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FAQs on Centropyge Angelfishes 4

Related Articles: Centropyge Angels, C. loricula/Flame Angel, Lemon/y Dwarf Angels, A Couple of Lemons; the True and False/Herald's (nee Woodheadi) Centropyges, Potter's Angels, Reef Safari! Keeping Multibarred Angelfish By Alexander Thomasser,

Related FAQs: Best FAQs on Centropyge, Centropyge Angels 1, Centropyge Angels 2Centropyge Angels 3, Dwarf Angel Identification, Dwarf Angel Selection, Dwarf Angel Compatibility, Dwarf Angel Systems, Dwarf Angel Feeding, Dwarf Angel Disease, Dwarf Angel Reproduction, Marine Angelfishes In General, Selection, Compatibility, Systems, Health, Feeding, Disease.  


Angelfishes for  Marine Aquariums
Diversity, Selection & Care

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by Robert (Bob) Fenner

saltwater fish survival rates. Centropyge (sel. f')    6/7/18
Are there statistics on the average number of specimens of a given saltwater species a hobbyist must purchase before acquiring one that lives beyond a few days?
Brian Waldbaum
<Mmm; there have been such data accumulations. In recent times efforts by Andrew Rhyne, Kevin Erickson... more extensive accounts years back by Tetra (Press Int'l). I (Robert Fenner) give my "general impressions" re such in articles, books I've penned. Do you have a specific fish, group in mind?
Have you searched/read on WWM re? The FAQs on "selection" are a good place to go after reading the general title/subject on a taxon. Bob Fenner>
Re: saltwater fish survival rates    6/7/18

Thanks for the response. I'm interested in Centropyge.
<Oh! Some European public aquariums have kept some species of this genus into the teens of years; a few into twenty some years>
I got into the saltwater side of the hobby after 18 years as a freshwater hobbyist in order to keep a dwarf angel. I read up on saltwater fishkeeping beforehand, and the take-away lessons seemed to be: 1) marine fish are more sensitive than freshwater fish, and 2) marine parasites are much more resilient and virulent than their freshwater counterparts.
<I do agree w/ these general statements. Do take into account that the majority of freshwater fishes are captive produced nowayears, less-exposed to pathogens, more inclined to adapt to captive conditions. In time, likely marines that are aquacultured for successive generations will likewise "harden".>
But even after taking those factors into account, I never succeeded in keeping a dwarf angel alive for more than a month. Many died within 48 hours in the quarantine tank. Since entering the hobby, I've lost 6 loricula, 2 ferrugata, 1 bispinosa, and 1 acanthops. I purchased them from a variety of sources, including online retailers and LFS. Needless to say, I have now left the hobby.
Are my results typical, or am I simply not cut out for the hobby?
<They are not atypical (unfortunately). I have been a part of the ornamental trade for more than half a century; and thus can/will attest that the high incidental mortality of Centropyge spp. are largely a matter
of rough handling, storage, shipping practices... incremental damage, stress from starvation, holding... The few specimens, crosses that have been captive-produced have been much more hardy. There are some "clues" I offer on WWM, elsewhere re picking out more hardy species, specimens... and providing reasonable-optimized settings for dwarf angelfish husbandry>
Brian Waldbaum
<Welcome. Bob Fenner>

A variety of Centropyge questions, and NMA fishes volumes   12/21/06 Hi Crew! <Hi Ed!  Mich here.> Love the site I learn so much each time I come. <Glad to hear you both like and learn.  It is always good to expand one's passions and intellect.>   In an earlier post, Bob said that a 150 gallon tank with lots of live rock could handle  a Coral Beauty and a Flame Angel. <Yes> I have a 90 with a good amount of live rock (100 pounds or so) I was wondering if this is big enough to host the same? <It might be.  Lots of variable come into play none the least include the temperament of the individual fish.> It currently has 2 clowns a royal Gramma some shrimp and serpent stars with oodles of snails. <Well, your system could certain support the added bioload.> An article on your site suggested adding 2 angels simultaneously to reduce territoriality issues. <Yes this would be smart in my opinion.  But if it can't be done I would introduce the Coral Beauty (Centropyge bispinosa) before the Flame Angel (Centropyge loricula)> My problem is that my quarantine is only 29 g and to add them at the same time I would want to purchase/quarantine at the same time. If I stagger them, who should I get first? <Centropyge bispinosa tend to be less aggressive than Flames.> Will they do okay in the 29 for a month with lots of PVC to hide in? <They may, they may not.  The good news is if they fair well, they obviously should be fine in your 90 gallon, If they don't there are mesh type tank dividers that you could install temporarily to keep them separated while in QT.>     I can raid my 'fug for pods and have a dedicated 10g algae tank for fresh red and green macro. Will that help? <Wouldn't hurt!> Lastly, any idea when the "fish book" announced in your reef invertebrate book will come out? <Sorry, I have not hear any rumblings.> <<Mmm, JasonC (if HE finds the time) and I may generate the other volumes... Antoine has seemingly lost all interest... is onto other full-time projects. RMF>> Thanks <Welcome!  -Mich> Ed

Determined to raise flame angels   2/26/06 I know its done but where can I find some specific info like first food, tank size I should use for the harem, should I use day and actinic lighting. Where can I purchase the first food too. Thanks <... please read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/marine/fishes/angels/centropyge/loricula.htm and the linked files above. Bob Fenner>

Centropyge Angels and slime algae   1/21/06 Hello and thank you for answering my questions. <Welcome> I am very new to the hobby (3-4 months) and came across your site today. I tried to research as much as I could, but am having trouble finding the articles I have searched for. I'm sure I will get better with practice. <Agreed> I have a 20 gallon tank with a bio-wheel filter and sea-clone skimmer. I set it up with 'live sand' and a 1lb Fiji rock and a few pieces of base rock. After letting it cycle I added a coral beauty dwarf angel <... needs more room> and, shortly after, a cleaner shrimp. Next I added an ocellaris (sp?) clown and a green goby. The coral beauty picked on the clown for a while, but they seem to have an understanding now. <Too much stress...> I also have several hermit crabs and two turbo snails. My most recent addition is a Lemonpeel dwarf angel. <! Not in this size system, and not with another Centropyge...> I probably should have done more research first, but my fish-store guy said they would be compatible. <Incorrect> The coral beauty chased the Lemonpeel around for a few days, pushing at it with his tail and nipping. That seems to have stopped for the most part but the Lemonpeel spends a lot of time hiding behind the rocks. He seems to be eating fine (no, I don't know either sex, I just say 'he'). I have noticed that his bright yellow color has faded ever so slightly, or maybe that's just my imagination. From what I've read on your site, I think you do not think these two are compatible in such a small tank. Is that right? <They are not> Should I wait and see if they get along, or try to return the Lemonpeel (I hate to, he's so cute!) <I would return likely both dwarf angels here> My second question is about the dark green-black algae that is growing in my sand. I keep trying to siphon it out but it keeps coming back. It was on one piece of my base rock, so I just removed that. Is this the Cyano I was reading about on your site? <Very likely so, yes> You talk about over feeding as a contributor to the problem. I'm sure I'm probably guilty of this, but how much is too much? <Testing... for nitrates, phosphates...> I had a sand sifting star fish, but it 'up and died' and since I don't really know much about star fish, I won't try that again soon. <This system is too small...> I do not have an R/O filter so right now I am using distilled water from the grocery store. Is this OK, or should I buy the R/O water from the fish store? <Mmm, what's your tapwater consist of? If it is "that bad", you ought to look into RO for your own use> How often is too often to do a water change? <More than about every week on a regular basis> I have read 2 weeks, but the fish-store said not more often than once a month, and not to change the filter pack at the same time. <Good advice> I test my water and keep the ph at 8.2, ammonia, nitrites at 0 and try to keep the nitrates below 20-30. I have the phosphates tested at the store, and other than a problem with my protein skimmer that I fixed, it has stayed at 0 too. <Mmm, likely the phosphate is there... bound up in your algae growth...> Thank you so much. Karen in Kentucky <Return those angels, look into more suitable livestock for this system. See "Small System Livestocking". You and they will be much happier. Bob Fenner>

Marine Centropyges: Flame Angel Rescue 10/27/05 Hi, crew. <Hi Roger.> I urgently need help in how to best care for a small Flame Angel I just rescued from the tanks of a major pet supplier.  <I understand how hard it is to see a fish suffer, heck even I might be suckered in, darn human emotions. To the point though, rescuing fish will only encourage folks to order and sell more fish in poor conditions.>  This poor fish was crammed into one of their small display tanks with about 10 Purple Tangs, a Coral Beauty, several Fire fish, and dozen or more Ocellaris Clown fish ( two of which were on the bottom) .  <Disgusting.>  Their fish arrive on Wednesday and I frequently stop by to see what's new. Imagine my horror to see this beautiful fish being tormented by the Purple Tangs and unable to escape. The flame was clearly distressed and obviously had only a couple of hours to live. After summoning the manager and voicing my displeasure about the flame's accommodations. We both looked for a suitable tank for it to recover. It took only a moment to realize this fish was doomed with no place to go. I now have a stressed-out Flame Angel at home in a 10 gal. tank.  <In a quarantine tank this small, I would do daily water changes.>  I bought it with the understanding that if it died I would get a refund or a replacement. The fish seems disoriented, though it is swimming around. It was so stressed that I skipped the usual FW dip. I didn't believe it would survive.  <I agree with your actions.>  The lights are off and have offered no food. Will do so tomorrow. I used water from my display tank, and a small Aqua Clear power filter, heater and PVC pipe for shelter. Other than that, I don't know what else to do other than wait. <You are on the right track. Monitor for signs of disease there may very be some from the conditions you describe at the store. Provide pristine water conditions and offer a varied diet perhaps with a nutritional supplement like Selcon.> <<It's also time to start offering food, animal cannot repair/heal itself without nutrients.  Nori, romaine, something it can free-feed on, along with meaty foods offered twice daily (don't leave in tank, siphon off uneaten), and do perform those daily water changes.  MH>> I appreciate any thoughts or advise. Thanks, Roger <Welcome, Adam J.> 
Re: Centropyge Rescue - Roger's Doing Things Right, Though 10/28/05
Thanks, Adam J. for responding to my request so quickly. <No trouble, you are welcome.> The Flame survived the night, and the rest of today, but the outlook remains grim. I mentioned that the fish seems disoriented.  <Probably still some trauma from his residence in such horrendous conditions at the Local Pet Store that you described.>  I now believe that's because he is blind, or extremely impaired.  <Possibly who knows what the conditions the tank you rescued him from were in. I'll guess some high nutrient levels at the least. Not to mention the intense levels of aggression from the purple tangs he was with.>  He is hovering in one place on the bottom and when he does move he bumps into the sides of the tank or his PVC shelter and just can't seem to find his way about. I was even able to reach in and hold him without any flight response.  <Not a good sign.>  <<Could be a sign of impending death - watch for stiffly held, erect fins, death comes very soon with that..  MH>> Could this have been stress induced and will it pass?  <Hard to say, even a stressed fish will run when in danger, a no- response shows weakness.>  I tried a little Mysis shrimp without success but will also try a small piece of Nori anchored where he hovers (thanks MH for the suggestion).  <Glad you saw that.>  My usual quarantine tank (29) is in use curing 30# of live rock, so the 10 gal. was /is an emergency room. Water changes will be done daily. How much of the volume? < Two to three gallons a day.> Any suggestions, thoughts or voodoo cures are certainly appreciated. <At this point the only thing you can do is keep water conditions pristine. Make sure the tank is efficiently aerated.> Thanks to all for the amount of time you take to help us out. <No worries, you are welcome.> Roger <Adam J.> 

Flame Angels Hi, Could you please tell me if you can sex Flame angels and any tips on how to get them to breed. I really want to try. Thanks a lot. <What little I know, and others input re the species is archived here:  http://www.wetwebmedia.com/fishindex3.htm  Bob Fenner>

Fishy Prices, Greetings! I truly enjoy your web site and the wealth of knowledge available. I only wish my brain could retain more. I was at the LFS perusing the stock and came across a Flame Angel (from Fr. Polynesia) that I was interested in until I saw the price. It was double of what of I had thought it should be. The owner said that prices on some fish are up due to the tsunami. I was wondering if you have any insight to the wholesale prices being affected by the tsunami or if the LFS is trying to fleece me. Thank you for sharing your expertise and your time.  <Well I can tell you this, my LFS sells Flames at 39.00-49.00 depending on their origin. James (Salty Dog)>

Golden Pygmy Angel Hey crew! A LFS was having a huge sale on livestock and tanks yesterday. I went there to just look.. (yeah right) and when I got to the fish section the very first fish I saw was a Golden Dwarf Angelfish. I have never seen one of these nor heard of them. The price tag was $90... <A bit steep. My thinking was the Flame Angel is the priciest among this species.>  ... and they had 30% off live stock so I could not say no. I really cant find a lot of info on this. I have looked on this website and found little as well. So could you guys give me some info on this fish? Are they a hardy fish? Are they rare to see in home aquariums?  <Larry, most of the pygmy angels are fairly hardy. I'm thinking what you have is a Rusty Angel. Here is a link with some pics. See if any of these look like yours. The link does have much to offer on the pygmy angels. http://www.wetwebmedia.com/centropyge2.htm  James (Salty Dog)> <<Mmm, if you go there James, you'll find this is a Centropyge aurantius. RMF>>

Dwarf Angel Compatibility and Tank Capacity (1-22-04) Hi! <Hi there to you as well, Leslie here tonight.> Thanks in advance, you've all be so helpful. <You're welcome and glad to be of service.> I have a 75 gallon, 25 lbs live rock, 1 sand sifting star, 2 dozen scarlet reef, 1 coral banded, 1 clown (Sebae?), 1 coral beauty. Based on advice from my LFS I just added a Bicolor Angel. <Utto> After doing so, I got to doing some more reading and have learned that these angels might not get along with other dwarf angels, do you know if he would get along with the coral beauty? <It's always best to do your research first and avoid such challenges. Here is an excerpt from one of Bob's articles:  "All dwarf angels are territorial, especially with members of their own species, then other Centropyge. Only folks with very big systems, four or more feet long, should tempt fate with more than one of the same species... and then only with plenty of cover and their watchful eye. Adding more than one Centropyge to your system? Do try to place them at the same time; or if that's not probable, make sure the new arrival is bigger (or female gender if discernible) and rearrange the decor to disorient the current tenants."    Here is a link to some additional info on these fish http://www.centropyge.net/bicolor.html  > If not, I'll probably be able to tell you soon enough :). <I hope not for the sake of the fish. The bicolor has a poor rate of success in captivity and less than ideal conditions will most likely not increase your odds for success.> My other question was about tank capacity, I would eventually like to add a Blue Tang, would that be too much? <No, I don't think so but your tank size borders on the low end of the scale for the recommend tank size for these fish. I prefer to see them in a larger tank.> My filtration is probably light, just an emperor 400 (I change the filters monthly and the activated carbon in the extra insert twice a month) and power heads with sponges. I realize that I should probably have a skimmer, I've just haven't had much luck with them in the past. <That's too bad. A skimmer would be ideal. Perhaps your poor luck with them in the past was related to the brand you were using. Please do consider giving them another chance. You might want to give another manufacturer a try. I like the CPR Bak Paks and the Remora's> Thanks so much for your help! Matt <You're most welcome, Leslie> 

Pygmy angelfish Website Hi guys, <Jim> Okey Dokey, first let me wish you a very prosperous new year. Second, thank you so much for the use of your pictures. The new web site is up. Please visit >> www.centropyge.net << any positive comments please forward to me  :) Jim Stime, Jr Resplendent Group; Aquarium Design - www.aquarium-design.com Centropyge Angelfish - www.centropyge.net Midwater Systems - www.jellyfishtanks.com MyFishTank - www.myfishtank.com <Tis a beauty. Will keep my eyes open for the species pix that you're missing. BobF> Maximum size of a Centropyge hey bob, I wanted to ask a question about an eibli angel?  everywhere I have read says it's max size is 6 inches, is that true and if so is it likely to grow to it's max size in a 65g tank? thank you, Chris <About this size, yes... and likely an inch or so shorter in a small system. Bob Fenner>

Starting full-size thanks bob, if I can get a hold of a full size eibli angel maybe five or six inches, will it still do well in captivity? <Not a good idea to start with specimens that are adult size in general... Ship and adapt poorly to captivity. Shoot for one that is 3-4 inches overall length. Bob Fenner>  

Resplendent angel 9/04 hello there, <Howdy> well, it is still unconfirmed but it is believed that Resplendent Angels ( Centropyge ) are being tank raised in Hawaii. <Neat.... wonder if Frank Baensch is involved here?> I just picked up one, about 3/4" long from a local wholesalers on Friday. depending on the availability, and what the market will bear, this fish is still pushing $1,000 see attached picture. note the Clear-For-Life sticker is 2"x2" Jim Stime, Jr. Aquarium Design - www.aquarium-design.com Midwater Systems - www.jellyfishtank.com MyFishTank.com - www.myfishtank.com <Thanks for the note and pic Jim. Bob F>

Re: resplendent angel Bob, >> <Neat.... wonder if Frank Baensch is involved here?> << It was strange, the only info I could get out of Quality was that the fish did come from Hawaii and it was in cubicles right next to similar sized C. interruptus, which are tank raised. So it is assumed that these fish did come from Frank. <Me too. I recall Chris Buerner telling me (while showing us the interruptus in their back area) that those came from him I believe.> Aside from the lack of info from the wholesaler it seemed odd to me that no mention has been made with regards to MAC. I would think this would be something very exciting and beneficial to the advancement of MAC and the industry in general. <The idiots that are the MAC at top are clueless... in their ever-changing BS program they initially intended to absolutely exclude tank produced livestock... because they couldn't "tax" it. Yes> How was Kona ? Did you go to MACNA in Boston ? <Fine... out there most of August, will be out there most of October... a bunch of the shell nut friends to dive with (Marty Beals of Tideline and his wife Angela including... and a new Hash group starting up... And yes to Boston, very nice. Gave a pitch yesterday and ret'd home. Cheers, Bob F> Jim Stime, Jr.
Re: Resplendent angel Bob, I found Franks web site and confirmed what I thought, the Resplendents are tank raised >>> http://www.rcthawaii.com/index.html  <<< Jim Stime, Jr <Ah, yes. Bob Fenner>

Aiptasia Tip <Hi! Ryan with you today> I currently have a 2 foot tank with 3 fish (Maroon Clown, Firefish Goby and Eibli Angel) the angel being the latest addition into the aquarium. I also have 1 fire shrimp and 1 skunk cleaner shrimp and a turbo snail. I put the Eibli Angel (1" Specimen) into my tank about 5 days ago and till now he has not eaten anything that I have added into the aquarium. I feed Ocean Nutrition Formula 2 Pellet food supplemented with Baby Brine Shrimp. The Maroon and Firefish go wild with the Formula 2 pellets but the Eibli Angel doesn't even take a look. Instead all it does is swim around the tank and in between the live rock nipping at the various algae and pods that are there. I remember having at least 4 red Aiptasia and 1 Green Aiptasia before adding in the Angel and I am certain of this as I was doing research as to how to get rid of them. My tank has been up and running for a while now ~ 1 year and the Aiptasia have been there since I can remember. Well now, there is not a sign of Aiptasia in my tank at all. My Eibli Angel is not appearing skinny at all and I have witnessed it "passing motion" 3 times already in the last 2 days. So from this I conclude that it has eaten my Aiptasia and I'm very happy about this. Yes my tank is small but I will be getting a 5 or 6 footer soon. Not asking for any advice just sharing my experience. <Thank you for sharing.  I will pass this along for others to refer.  Ryan>

Bicolor Angelfish color loss Hi I am Kenneth My son's Bicolor angelfish is losing color on the dark blue part of it, it is turning a light blue is it anything I should worry about? THANK YOU <Possibly... are your other livestock "okay"? It may be that this animal is deficient in some aspects of nutrition (lots of live rock is a standard item here), or that some aspect/s of water quality are lacking... do you have sufficient skimming, regular water changing? Could be "just a sign of age"... as the blue does diminish in the wild with growth/size. Bob Fenner>
Re: Bicolor Angelfish color loss
Thank you Bob for your help I will add liverock and check water quality. <Real good. Please do keep me posted. Bob Fenner>

-Stocking list for a new 65- Hi.  I'm contemplating an upgrade to a 65 gallon tank (36x18x24) and have been  attempting to complete a stocking plan before purchasing the new tank. <An often overlooked step!> I  currently have a mandarin [fat and happy for 6+ months on frozen as well as  plenty of live copepods/amphipods from the refugium] <One of the few that eats frozen, you're lucky!> and an ocellaris clown and plan to add these two fish to the new tank.  I plan on introducing a second  ocellaris and would like to add a pair of fire gobies and a flame angel and some hardy invertebrates. <Be sure you have somewhere to remove the new clown to just in case the resident clown really beats on it.> I have an Aqua-C Remora Skimmer and refugium on my current tank and would install them on the new tank along with a 6 inch DSB (my  main motivation for purchasing a tall tank).  I've read through the FAQs and several other sources and seen mixed opinions on the tendencies of Centropyges.  Could a flame angel peacefully co-habitate with the aforementioned fish in this size of a system and/or do you think this is too many fish for this tank?  <I think this would be an appropriate stocking list. The Centropyge shouldn't mess with any of the other fish, but it may nip at coral.> Also, I enjoyed the Reef Invertebrates book and look forward to the fishes! <Great! Will pass along. Good luck! -Kevin> Thanks! Christopher

Quarantine Quandary Hi WWM crew, <Hi there! Scott F. with you tonight!> Sorry to write again so soon. But here is the thing. I just had a very pretty Coral Beauty die on me in my QT. <Must be a lot of that going around with Coral Beauties these days...> I feel I may have killed it but wonder if it might have been the reverse. The tank was started over---here is what I did: I put a new sponge (Whisper) in my main tank for 3 weeks. Then I put in maybe 6 gals of new water and added 4 gals of water (maybe more) from the main tank. <Good, although you could have used 100% tank water, too> The main tank is doing nicely aside from some nasty algae <This, too, shall pass> , but everything is thriving, and it has been going for over a year. The QT sat around like this for awhile. <Remember, a QT is not a permanent feature...You break it down when not in use> Anyway on to yesterday: I had the fish just about two weeks.  I had just done a water change (1 gal), this is in a ten gal. This was the second water change. The water change is from my main tank. During the water change I pulled some PVC around and the fish swam about briefly. It looked healthy but has been rather shy. Yesterday sometime or other the fish died. <Bummer...> I was rather busy yesterday and I think pulled the dead fish out today. <Not the best practice, but we all have busy lives to lead....understandable> Post mortem revealed no burning, spots or marks of any kind-- darn healthiest looking dead fish I have ever seen. When the fish was alive I don't remember seeing heavily clamped fins or trouble breathing. I turned the Whisper off last night. Today I did a water test on the Qt and found the following rather alarming figures. I must say maybe I have gotten a little unconscientious on the water tests. <Oops> Both tanks are usually almost boringly stable. Even the Qt. But anyway here are the test results: temp 7.8; S.G. 1.023; ph 8.2; ammonia .6 !; nitrite 1 ! and nitrate 10. <Don't like that ammonia level. or the nitrite level..> To me this looks like a cycle or maybe a recycle. Could a dead fish have caused this? <In a small tank with minimal filtration, it's entirely possible...> Or could the fish have lived that long in water that bad? I know a damsel might but this was a Coral beauty. Or was the tank just too unestablished? (BTW, this doesn't sound too dissimilar to how I have started up a QT in the past.) I can't say I have not had unexplained deaths in the past. Would I see no distress in a fish with this water quality or lack thereof? <You would most likely see distress of some sort...Again, I'd opt to break down the QT between uses...Do test the water during the QT period...Hard to be sure exactly what it was that killed the fish...It could have been the ammonia and nitrite levels, if they were detectible prior to the fish's death...Or- it could have been poor collection practices (entirely beyond your control), etc. Don't be discouraged...Hang in there! Regards, Scott F> BTW, I did look in the FAQs but didn't find anything quite like this mentioned. Also what to do at this point with it? Big water change or let the tank just cycle itself out. Only biomedia is the sponge in the whisper. Thanks. --des

Centropyge mixing 7/20/03 Crew: I have read that mixing Centropyge species in the same tank is a no-no, but I just have to ask about a specific combination.  I am interested in the Flame Angel (C. loricula) primarily.  In addition to that, I was hoping I could get away with the Cherub Angel (C. argi).  My thinking is that their different sizes and colors would make it okay to have them both in a 55 gallon (48" long).  I appreciate your time.  Rich <with so many beautiful fish in the sea... I wonder/advise - "why tempt fate" by mixing congeners, conspecifics or other fishes likely to fight/compete. In this case, I will admit that you have a better chance of it working than with other Centropyge... but again, why tempt fate? My advice is to select only one. Kind regards, Anthony>
Centropyge mixing Follow-up 7/21/03
Anthony: I appreciate your reply to my Centropyge question.   <always welcome my friend> A summary: you basically said C. loricula and C. argi may work together in my 55, but "why tempt fate" when there are so many other fish in the sea.   <correct :) > A follow-up, if I may: I recently returned my last remaining Damsel, the Azure Demoiselle (Chrysiptera hemicyanea - seen here (my picture) after Bob identified him for me a few weeks ago:  http://www.wetwebmedia.com/chrysipterafaqs.htm ) to LFS after 43 weeks(!) in display because he got a little chippy towards others, <heehee... cheeky monkey> maybe when he realized he was the eldest occupant after the other damsel returns (sorry, the damsels were used for cycling before I found your site - none died in my care by the way - please be gentle :D).   <no worries... quite common to do> I was looking at the C. argi as a "blue-to-purple-and-yellow-small-when-grown-up" replacement for that beautiful damsel I had (*sniff*). I have been leafing through my Marine Fishes by Scott W. Michael, but I can't seem to find anything suitable.  I was hoping something would leap to your mind, relating to the fish of course! (hey, I can dream, right?).  Also, can you recommend a marine-fish-suitability reference larger than Mr. Michael's?  Thanks again and again for your guidance, Rich. <absolutely... fishbase.org  It is the largest reference any of us are likely to find, and its free on the web. Search by common name or scientific when know. Or pick a genus that you are favoring and follow the links to all of its species for a browse. Note that there is a link for more pics on each individual page as well as links for diet, reproduction, distribution, etc. Best of luck! Anthony>
Centropyge mixing Follow-up II 7/21/03  
Anthony: Wow, that must be the speed reply record!   <they don't call me Sir Speedy for nothing. Erhhhh... on second thought, don't spread that one around.> I first thought it bounced back. <we do try to reply to all within 24 hours here... some days/weeks(!) are busier than others> As far as the reference goes, I was hoping for a book I could leaf through, as well as proudly display on my bookshelf.  Anything on that order? <nothing so much on all fishes collectively. It would really be a monumental endeavor. Its best to focus on titles that feature families and groups. Helmut Debelius has produced some outstanding books in this manner. Very handsome production. Of course... there is our volume two coming soon ;) Reef Fishes <G>> Thanks, Rich. Ps: Reef Invertebrates book is AWESOME - don't tell me how it ends, I am not done yet ;)! <Ha! Happy reading... and hoping the book makes it out of the lavatory without color changes to the images. Anthony>

Tempting An Angel I just bought a Bicolor Angel on Tuesday and it hasn't eaten anything. I know it is normal for a fish to not eat for the first couple of days but this guy is very active and swims all over the tank. When I put the food in he will act like it isn't there, swimming normally with no interest in the food. He is about 4 1/2 in. including his tail and I have tried brine shrimp, algae sheets, and krill. Should I try something else or just let him be? Thanks, Andy <Well, Andy- it's very important to continue tempting this fish with as many different foods as you can think of. I'd try to throw in a few small live rocks that have a nice growth of fauna and microalgae on them. You also might want to try some other frozen foods, particularly "Angel Formula" by Ocean Nutrition. I've used this food many times to tempt finicky Centropyge angels into eating a captive diet. Be sure to keep the water quality high, and the feedings varied and frequent. Hopefully, this guy will come around and feed...Good luck! Regards, Scott F>

Black Centropyge nox feelin' blue... Hi!! <Hellooooo, Kevin here> My husband & I found your website a couple weeks ago while researching the viability of getting a mandarin, and we found your FAQs very helpful. <Great, I hope it allowed you to make an informed decision.> This is my first time posting a question, and unfortunately it is not under happy circumstances. We got a black nox dwarf angel recently. <One of my favorite Centropyge angels, unfortunately they don't do so hot in captivity.> We quarantined little Jiji for 2 weeks, and since he looked fine, was active, and was eating well, we put him in our main tank Saturday night (adding him to Picasso the Sailfin tang & Gilligan the Ocellaris clown).  However, the other day we noticed Jiji was occasionally scratching himself against our live rock, and upon closer examination saw that he was breathing rapidly & had whitish patches on his sides & fins.  We removed him from the main tank & put him back in the QT last night.  I dosed the QT with Formalin last night, and we will probably give Jiji a freshwater dip this evening. <Good plan, run a full set of water tests on both the QT and the display.> As you may have guessed from the medication, I think Jiji has come down with Brooklynella.  I know the scratching is a sign of a parasitic infection, and the whitish patches are way too large for ich or velvet.  But while his gills are moving very rapidly, Jiji is not gasping at the top of the tank, nor is he lethargic or not eating.  In fact, he is still quite active.  Does this mean that he is just in the early stages of Brooklynella or that he may have something else altogether? <It's likely Brooklynella, if not the formalin should knock it out anyway. Make sure it is well fed with vitamin enriched foods, lots o' algae, and if the formalin isn't working very well add some copper sulfate. This is also why I quarantine for 30-45 days, even though the fish may look bullet-proof they still can go downhill and get everyone else sick.> Also, since medicating the main tank is NOT an option & neither is removing the fish (we have no place to move them to), what would you suggest as alternatives to making sure this doesn't spread?  I am considering picking up some garlic extract to add to all the fishes' food, as garlic seems to bolster their immune systems. <I'd try the garlic, and if all the fish are healthy you won't have to worry about it spreading. Good luck, I hope everything goes well! -Kevin> Thanks in advance, Samantha

Multiple dwarf angels in a tank? (06/21/03) Hello again, <Hi! Ananda here again...> Is it possible to have 2 dwarf angels in a 44 gallon tank?, flame and a coral rock beauty??? <Not recommended at all. Centropyge angels are generally hostile to each other.> Thanx for the 2 links on live kits!!! <You're quite welcome. --Ananda>

The perfect Centropyge angel? Good day to you. <And the same to you.> I was wondering if there is a dwarf angel that is more reef safe than others. <Two words: crap shoot. It's usually 50/50 although every Lemonpeel or golden pygmy angel I've run into has been a nibbler, that's not to say that there are many people which have these fish in their tanks behaving themselves. I've had pretty good luck with flame angels at the shop, and I have one at home who hasn't nibbled for 3+ years. Good luck, and I hope you nab the right one! -Kevin>

Where Angels DON'T Fear To Tread! Thanks for your time and assistance, it's truly valued out here in reeferland. <And we really enjoy corresponding with our fellow fish nuts! Scott F. with you tonight...> I have been preparing my tank for the last few months to display a Centropyge multicolor and, as this fish costs about 5x any other living investment I have made, I am a little paranoid about my preparation. <I Don't blame you! It's a great fish, and can live a long time once it's settled in> I've written here a few times so a Google with broh will bring up my past questions - The tank is MUCH more grown out than these older pics show http://www.skimmerless.com/content/rig/12/. The quick of it - I had a pump failure about 6 months ago, and the consequent death left me saddened, but excited that I could restock closer to my original stocking plan. <Looks like a nice Centropyge environment to me!> The tank has gone about 3 months now with a school of 9 Chromis viridis as the only fish. The tank is 30x30x30 with a 55gal refuge. I have let the macro grow like wild, removing only the algae that interferes with the corals by shading, or growth. My parameters are the best they have ever been, with all levels at zero except Nitrate which tends to hang out a little below 5 ppm. <Still quite acceptable, and can drop to undetectable levels with continued good husbandry procedures> I have been reading through the FAQs here and whatever I could find on the web about this fish. I am curious about specific algae that this fish will take. I'd feel awfully silly if all the Caulerpas (racemosa, mexicana) Dictyota I grow are not of interest to the fish. <Well, this fish is usually found among rubble on steep outer reef slopes, so macroalgae may form a more limited part of its diet. However, if well maintained, the macroalgae can perform other valuable services, such as serving as a fine nutrient export mechanism, and acting as a haven for useful food items, such as amphipods, etc.> The only other question I have is about lighting. The tank was aquascaped with hiding in mind - so there are lots of caves and almost completely dark areas, however, there is still close to 1000W pouring into this tank. Should I reduce my 10000k lamp schedule and rely on the 20000k more to simulate a deeper environment? <It certainly couldn't hurt...It will certainly lend a more "realistic" look to the tank> The only other fish in the tank will be the Chromis, a blue spot jaw, and possibly a fairy wrasse in the future. Thanks. Bill Roh <Sounds like a nice mix. I like your approach to keeping this unique fish! It's very cool to plan a biotope around a fish's special needs. Good luck! Regards, Scott F>

Coral beauty beats up porcupine puffer? Whaaaa?!! I recently purchased a coral beauty <Good lookin' fish>, and a while after that, after some research and a LOT of questions added a porcupine puffer. OK well the thing is, they were fine until about 8 days after I put the PORK in and I started to see the Pork's skin looking as if it had been torn off. Well jumping to many conclusions I thought it might have been a disease, I have been doing water changes on a regular basis and all the water perimeters are fine. Before taking him out I saw my coral beauty go up and bite him, and it looks as if she is the culprit in this mess....so my question (finally hehe) is this normal/common, or do I just have one evil coral beauty??? <Yes, coral beauties are generally passive with fish other than Centropyge angels.> what would you do? <Well, make sure that the puffer wasn't already sick. Any fish will take advantage (much to our dismay) of a sick critter. If the puffer was hurtin' then it is likely that the angel was simply capitalizing on a weak tankmate. Darwinism at its best. -Kevin> Thank you much, Karie

It Ain't Over Till The Bloated Fish...Lives (Centropyge "Bloat') Dear Piscatorial Crew: <Scott F. your Fishy Friend tonight!> Hola! <Good evening!> Could you please tell me more about the Centropyge "bloat" syndrome. I've scoured the net for info and apparently it's endemic to dwarf's. But why do they develop the bloating during initial shipment? <Well, this malady is thought to be caused by decompression trauma. Many of these fishes are collected at depths that require some decompression. Some collectors insert a needle into the fish's anus (yuck!) in order to "help" the fish decompress. This, and other decompression "techniques" can result in a serious internal infection caused by bacteria.> They are finicky eaters and I'd imagine it's hard to ingest bacteria. Also, there is an instance of a Centropyge Bicolor eating Cryptocaryon from a surgeonfish and contracted the disease 2 days later. How do you cure it apart from feeding antibiotics? Or does this mean, "That's all folks, the show is over"? Please advice. Best, Bazza <The resulting infection can be cured with antibiotics, either in the water, or in the food. It's quite possible to save an affected fish, if quick action is taken! Good luck! Regards, Scott F>

A Perfect Angel For A Small World! Hello WWM Crew! Want to thank Scott F for the previous advice.  Very helpful.  Today, I assure you, will be a quick question. <Glad that you found it useful- I'm back with you tonight!> My 25 gal tank is cycled with 25 pounds Tonga Live rock, 40 lbs sugar fine live sand.  Eclipse hood filtration, 2 power heads and a CPR skimmer 2r producing 1/2 cup a day tea-coffee colored waste. <You know that I love to hear THAT!>   Current Bio-Load: 1 Lysmata amboinensis 1 Lysmata debelius 1 Mithrax Crab (LR Hitchhiker) 5 Miniature Blue legged Reef hermits. 3 small Red sea snails My initial stocking list included the above and a flame wrasse/flasher wrasse.  Would also adding a small pygmy angel in time be overdoing it?  I want to keep this tank under stocked and healthy as possible. Thanks again! Ryan Bowen San Francisco, CA   <I think that you nailed it, Ryan...You're right about where you'd want to be, in terms of fishes, in this sized tank. As far as the pygmy angel, you could go for the "Cherub Angel"( C. argi), the "Flameback Angel" (C. aurantonotus), or, if you are a Pacific kind of guy, like me- a good small choice would be C. fisheri or C. flavicauda. All of these are small, very adaptable, and have interesting behaviours and color patterns. I'd let the tank become established for a while before adding the angel, as it will need some microfauna and algae to pick at to help supplement it's diet. Other than that- just provide common sense care and you'll enjoy these fish for many years to come! Good luck! ScottF>

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