Please visit our Sponsors

FAQs about Toadfishes, FW "Lions, Stonefishes"

Related Articles: Toadfishes Spiky characters; An introduction to the spiny, sluggish oddballs of the families Batrachoididae and Tetrarogidae by Neale Monks

Related FAQs: 

Brittany's pic of the front end of her toadfish.

Violet goby ideas     5/14/17
<Hello Meghan,>
I'm still playing around with different ideas of how to eventually house my violet dragon goby. Currently it is alone in a 55 gallon brackish tank, SG 1.005 (varies a little with water changes).
<All sounds fine. Precise specific gravity doesn't matter at all. The main thing is that there's "some" salinity, and it's not kept in plain freshwater indefinitely.>
I was thinking about an enormous tank, but I'm concerned with the ongoing cost of marine salt - especially considering 10-20% weekly water changes.
<Weekly water changes won't be necessary if you lightly stock the tank. 2-3 week gaps between water changes will be fine. Monitor nitrate (make sure it doesn't go too high) and pH (make sure it doesn't drop too much) and use these as a guide as to when to do water changes. Fundamentally, water changes are about keeping nitrate low and preventing acidification. We don't do massive weekly water changes to outdoor ponds precisely because
they're modestly stocked and have "natural" ways of avoiding high nitrate levels and fluctuating pH levels. Oh, and one tip -- if you can get old water from a reef tank, that's usually easily good enough to use in a brackish system! Mix with tap water, of course, to get the right salinity, maybe one part reef tank water with three parts tank -- and you'll get something around SG 1.005 that'll be fairly low in nitrate without needing any expense on salt!>
So now I'm thinking about a much smaller tank. 55 gallons - 48" long is the minimum size for the goby.
<Correct, though it's lookalike species, Gobioides peruanus, is considerably smaller.>
I read that dwarf fuzzy lionfish can handle an SG of 1.015 and up. My goby should be fine with that, too. I can even add a protein skimmer.
<While these lionfish (and other, Pterois spp.) do occur in below normal marine salinities, I'm not convinced they inhabit such waters indefinitely.
SG 1.018 would be fine, and standard procedure for many (robust) marines in the 60s and 70s, but SG 1.015? Seems a bit low to me, especially when there *are* true brackish water fish of similar type out there, such as Notesthes robusta and Neovespicula depressifrons, this latter being very similar in size and appearance to Dendrochirus spp. That said, the Dwarf Fuzzy is certainly easier to get, so I will let BobF chime in here before I get too adamant about its suitability or otherwise!>
So I'm thinking about a 55 gallon tank with the goby and some dwarf fuzzy lionfish. I'd love some little blue leg hermit crabs, too, but I'm betting the lions would eat them, right?
<It isn't common, but it does happen, yes. A lot depends on the relative sizes of the lionfish and the hermit crabs' shells.>
Would a 55 gallon be sufficient space for my goby plus 3 or more of the little lions?
<I would think not; when keeping marines, more space is better, especially if you're trying to reduce workload/expense.>
And would live rock work at that low SG? And would the rough surface of the rocks be a danger to the goby?
<Live rock will in theory work, in the sense that once the bacteria colonise the anaerobic crevices, you'll get denitrification alongside nitrification on the aerobic parts of the rock. But the marine invertebrates and algae? Nope, they'll die at reduced salinities, except in a few cases which often end up as little more than green-brown algal slimes. Might as well just get Tufa rock, lava rock or "dead" live rock. Bacteria will colonise these just as well. Will they scratch the gobies?
Well, it's a risk, yes; given these gobies come from muddy rivers and estuaries, abrasive rocks and reefs aren't something they're programmed to deal with. So I'd be looking at bogwood, water worn cobbles, that sort of thing.>
Maybe I should go full strength sea water so I can try corals or something, too. Would the goby be happy & healthy long term at the higher salinity?
<Gobioides broussonnetii can/does live in fully marine habitats. Not coral reefs though, and it might well be stung/irritated by polyps and the like.>
My goby isn't an aggressive feeder - it let Sailfin mollies & guppies munch the food intended for it. That's why it is alone now. Would the lions cause the same problem?
<Keeping them with livebearers is ideal, given that Gobioides are primarily herbivores and detritus feeders in the wild, so they all eat the same stuff. Algae flake, Plec wafers, and a few offerings of small invertebrates such as brine shrimps ticks all the right boxes. Easy peasey. Adding a nocturnal predator complicates things, and obviously would view small livebearers as prey. But shouldn't be a threat to the Gobioides, assuming the latter was much too big to be viewed as food. But predators need meaty food, which means nitrate because a problem more quickly, which would in turn mean more frequent water changes. So do-able, yes, but optimal, probably not.>
Thank you for all the help with my questions!
- Meghan
<Most welcome. Neale.>
re: Violet goby ideas (Bob, Dwarf Lionfish at SG 1.015?)     5/14/17

"Dwarf Fuzzy is certainly easier to get, so I will let BobF chime in here before I get too adamant about its suitability or otherwise!"
<As Neale hints; the genus Dendrochirus Lions can be kept at reduced spg, but not this low permanently. Too damaging to their kidneys, other internal organs. Bob Fenner>
Re: Violet goby ideas (Bob, Dwarf Lionfish at SG 1.015?)     5/15/17

Oh, and let me add Meghan, that you have another crepuscular predator option in the US trade; namely Butis butis, and beautiful species despite its “Crazyfish” moniker. Eminently suitable for life alongside Gobioides and *adult* Sailfin Mollies; will view bite-sized companions as prey. Please see attached for a photo of this underrated gem, a true brackish water specialist adaptable to anything from hard freshwater to full marine, but probably best in middling salinities. Adult length to 15 cm/6 inches; hardy, territorial but otherwise peaceful.
Bottom line, unnecessary to maintain (and possibly stress) a marine predator at suboptimal salinities when there’s a good range of brackish water predators out there to choose from!
Cheers, Neale

Bloated Toadfish       2/15/16
To Bob F I was advised to get in touch with regarding my brackish toad fish(tank is kept at sg 0.010
<Mmm; I'll take this as 1.010>
the top end for my archer's and green Chromide but I did take it 0.012 for 2 wks)by Neale monks on fb brackish group. My toad fish has been like this for over 4 months now it started after eating 2 archers 3/4 it's size in 3 days
<Looks like it got "poked" by their fins... inside>

(it have replaced that divider with a much better 1)but after it not going down over several wks I tried adding Epsom
salt at 6g to 20 liters and did the same again after the weekly 20% water change
and added a power head with the venture on as recommended by Neale monks with no effect on the toad fish(but my gold moray eel which had been sulking after a tank rearrange and was just starting to eat again went back to his normal greedy self). I have also tried Metronidazole but the fish would not eat the soaked food the fish still looks the same but is coming
out late evening and going into ambush mode so I have been giving it 1 cockle and 1 bit of salmon over a wk as it didn't feed for 2 months it's diet before this was the odd Hikari Massivore and odd prawn but it's main food was salmon, rainbow trout, basa, squid, cockles, Pollock and the odd bit of whitebait never feeders. The photos are quite old but can some tonight if it comes out which it normally does now Thank you for any help you can give
Steven M
<I would discontinue (or not use) the Metronidazole, but do keep adding the Epsom, with water changes. Do you have a "full marine" set-up there? If so, I'd move the Toadfish to this... as the higher specific gravity water will likely speed recovery. Also, I'd add more decor, habitat; so the Toad can get completely out of the light. Bob Fenner>

Re: Toadfish      2/16/16
Thanks for the fast reply I don't have full marine set up but will carry on with the Epsom salt the toad fish has a reptile cave which it stays in all day and comes out when the lights go out am I right to carry on with the light feeds or if it's hungry should I give it a little more than 2 cockles (or cockle sized bit of fish)
Thanks again
Steven M
<I would offer very little food for now. Wait till the fish is not so concave. BobF>

Thanks again for the speedy reply
Steven M
<Welcome... Batrachoidids are some of my faves... to try and find, photograph in the wild. B>

Help With An ID/Toadfish ID 2/21/10
Dear Crew,
Once again I beseech to dip into your infinite pool of knowledge. I recently came across this guy in my curing bin for live rock (after a fresh purchase, lucky me!!), and am at a bit of a loss as to if this guy is a scorpion fish or in my opinion, a toadfish. I have been scouring many sites in the hopes I can be 100% certain he is what I believe he is (Opsanus beta - or Gulf Toadfish). Am I right on this one? Some of them look so similar, though it seems the scorpions have many more pointy ends carrying a whole lot of hurt juice, as well as the eyes being much lower on the head, rather than perched on top like this particular guy. Or am I completely off and he is something else?
<It appears you are on the right track. You may want to visit this link where there are
a gazillion pictures of toadfish. This should help you with a positive ID although I believe your ID is correct.
Information and FAQ's re keeping this fish can be found here.
Thanks for the help crew!!
<You're welcome. James (Salty Dog)>

Loud gulf toadfish Opsanus beta  12/13/08 Hello, my name is Desha. I have a 6-month-old, 75 gallon saltwater tank that I have stocked exclusively with finds that I have acquired, mainly by catching them in my cast net, from the pier half a mile from my house on the Gulf Coast of Mississippi. <Neat!> I have done lots and lots of research in the past 9 months or so and have very often found information on your site that I could find nowhere else. Thank you guys for that. Hopefully you can find the time to answer a couple of questions for me. I am attaching pictures that may be useful. Please let me know if you have any problems with the attachments or if perhaps I could take a picture from a different angle or something that may help. <Okay> The pride and joy of my tank is my 8-inch long gulf toadfish, Opsanus beta. I also have an amazing anemone that was caught on my pier by a friend of mine. It is attached to a hermit crab shell. (He brought it to me saying what an amazing soft shell hermit crab he had found but when it was put in the water the anemone opened and revealed the reason for the "soft shell." The crab had only 1 eye and died within 12 hours but the anemone seems to be well and happy.) I also have a striped hermit crab, 2 small PopEye mullets, a few grass shrimp and half a dozen snails. Until a couple of weeks ago, I also had a beautiful little sea robin but he fell victim to the toadfish. <Are "big eaters"> My first question is about the snails. Three nights ago they began laying eggs on my aquarium glass and have been doing this off and on ever since. The thing is, I have no idea what kind of snails these are and none of the pictures that I have found of snail eggs look like mine. They look a little like short, thick, white hairs growing on the grass. I would like to figure out the gestation period and the likelihood that I will have little snail babies soon and whether I will need to provide some sort of special food if they do hatch. Perhaps you know some of these things or can give me a bit of a clue as to what kind of snail this is so that I can do some further research. <Mmm, would like some other pix to compare... Southern Oyster Drills (Stramonita haemastoma)> My other question involves my toadfish. For about a week now I have been hearing a loud noise from the aquarium at all hours of the day and night. It is literally loud enough that it wakes me up. It sounds like a cell phone vibrating in a dresser drawer. At first I thought it was a powerhead malfunctioning and finally have realized is my fish. I have heard the sound of the toadfish played online and I am certain it is him but I am surprised. I was aware that the toadfish made sounds but I had been under the impression that it was unlikely for one to vocalize in captivity. Is this uncommon? <Not uncommon> Also, as I understand it, this is a mating call. So does he need a mate? <Mmm, not really... Likely to fight in too small a space> Will he ever give up and quit calling for one? He calls every 5 to 25 minutes around the clock. >Heeee! Are loud for sure< Thank you guys for everything. You have a wonderful site. Thanks again, Desha <Thank you for sharing your experiences, commentary. Bob Fenner>

Any ideas for this tank? Toadfish sys.   5/28/2008Hi, <Jon> Four or five months ago I bought what I think is an orange toadfish from the LFS. I tried to do as much research as possible on these fish as I could, but not a lot of info seems to be available, or people just don't keep this fish. <More the latter> I have since had to use the method of trial and error to figure out what the best way to take care of this fish. I currently have it in a 30 gallon tank with 60+ lbs of live rock. It so far doesn't seem to have a problem with a serpent star that I put in the tank a week ago, but I don't know if that will last. The toadfish tends to put all sorts of things from shells to algae in its mouth until it decided that it isn't food. <What they do> I plan on upgrading the filtration a lot and making the tank into more of a planted tank. <?> I want to put some mangroves in the tank <Mmm, I'd add a sump... put the mangroves there... tie in w/ plumbing> since it has an open top, some algae, and maybe make/get a sump with more volume and more live rock. I have a few questions though... Are there any fish that I could put with the toad? Currently I'm humoring the possibility of adding a lion if I got a little bigger tank or something. <Not likely in this small volume, no> What specific improvements to the tank would I need to make so that I could add compatible fish? <A much larger volume... then studying the habitat of this fish (look up Batrachoidids (the family) on the Net, fishbase.org... then the species...> Is the tank size alright if I add more filtration? The nitrates right now in the tank are a little high, but nothing big. <... can't tell anything w/o data re water quality...> Are there inverts that the toadfish wouldn't eat, and wouldn't devour algae too much? It seems to me that the fish would like shrimp and fish more than anything with a shell. I don't think it can crack very many shells. <Again... volume...> If I add a sump with considerable live rock, will that help a lot with filtration, or do I need to get a bigger tank in general? <Bingo! Yes to both> Do you have any suggestions in general on how to make this tank more aesthetically pleasing than what is now (one slow-moving toadfish, and a bunch of live rock)? Thanks a lot for your help, Jon <Please read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/batrachoididae.htm and the linked FAQs file above. A neat group of fishes... behaviorally. Cheers! Bob Fenner>

Re: Ick! The first thing an aquarist says when he sees white spots on his fish. Some Gifts Are "Not" - 07/07/07 EricR, <<Scott>> Thanks for all of the advice. <<Is my pleasure to share>> The Eel, the Grouper, and the Puffer will all go to new homes once they either get too large or I move to a larger apartment as I am slowly going to convert this tank to a reef system. <<Mmm, better sooner than later…>> I have attached some small cell phone photos of my inhabitants. <<Beautiful specimens, I understand your attraction re…but some (you know which ones) are already looking "too big" for your system>> Can you identify the rock fish for me - I've had no success matching up images? <<I can only guess (perhaps if Bob sees this he will have a better idea), but it appears to possibly be a species of Stonefish or Scorpionfish, but…it does also look like there is a "lure" positioned between the eyes that would be indicative of a species of Anglerfish. Either way, do note the size of the head/mouth in relation to the body size…this fish is likely capable of consuming other fishes nearly a large as itself…consider yourself "warned"…>> <Is a Batrachoidid... Please see here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/batrachoididae.htm, RMF> The Eel, Rockfish, and Puffer I rescued from my office's remodel. <<Good intentions…now send them to proper homes>> They were going to throw out the tank and all fish. <<Unfortunately this is not uncommon re these settings>>>> I couldn't let that happen and now I am learning everything that I can to give them a happy home. <<Lest you know another hobbyist who can/has the systems to accommodate, best to take to your LFS for some store credit>> Thanks again for your site - I'm reading through it everyday. <<Excellent, my friend>> Regards,
<<Cheers, Eric Russell>>

Cost of a toadfish?   5/25/07 Hey guys, quick question for you guys. I have a magnificent red oyster toadfish. He is about 6 inches long and in wonderful condition. However..... I want to start a small reef aquarium and I can't do that with him... he makes too much waste and eats everything lol. I don't really have the resources to have two tanks right now, so I have talked to a local aquarium store and they are willing to take him in for store credit. Problem is I don't know what a reasonable cost would be. He was originally bought for around $50, but should he increase in price since he's larger? Thanks, Josh <Actually, about the same price... this is one of quite a few species that don't increase in value with growth. Bob Fenner>

Snowflake bit orange toadfish   4/15/07 Hey there Bob and friends,   there doesn't seem to be much info on toadfish anywhere on the web. <Not much...> Just a quick question,...I have a 90 gallon with a dogface, a 6 inch orange toadfish, and a 18 inch snowflake eel. I've noticed the eel doesn't seem to bother anyone EXCEPT the toadfish. Today I came home and noticed the toad's gill on one side looked a little shredded and there seems to be a little piece of cartilage sticking out from the gill area. He doesn't seem stressed and still eating whatever comes near him. (i.e. freeze dried krill, live ghost shrimp)...........and finally the question(s)!!!.....Do you think he'll heal from this/be okay? And is something I can to do to aid in the healing?? Are eels and toads mortal enemies?? <Mmm... not really so much as enemies as the not-well sighted eels desire to keep the bottom "cleared" for their investigation, use... and don't have hands, thumbs to sample, manipulate their universe... only a mouth with sharp teeth... BobF>     ..thanks a million,   Adam B.

Re: Snowflake bit orange toadfish   4/16/07 .....thanks for the quick response,...I guess I kind of bunched two or three questions together. If you had to guess, would you say he should be okay? <No way to tell... but the family is very tough by and large...> And is there anything I can do to help??    <Mmm, you have moved this fish? Or the Eel? Likely need to be housed separately>   thanks again, Adam B.      (from previous post)****and finally the question(s)!!!.....Do you think he'll heal from this/be okay? And is something I can to do to aid in the healing?? ...sorry! <Likely so, and just general good husbandry. Bob Fenner>

Orange toadfish? ...Close Frogfish ...Orange you Hoppy?   1/30/07 <Hello Brian, Mich with you today.> Ok, so we made our weekly trip to the LFS, and found the newest addition to my fish only tank. They were advertising it as an orange toad fish, but several Google attempts later I can't seem to find any information on this so ugly he is cute... thing. <Oh!  I love these fish!  Yes, so ugly it's cute! And great at hide and seek!  There's nothing but rocks in this tank... nope, no fish here... you can't see me... love 'em!  Love to watch them go for walks too!  Amazing!  Can you tell I like this fish?  Yes, this is angler or frogfish... though toadfish seems like a more accurate description with all the warty-like lumps and bumps.   He seems to get along perfectly well with my Volitans and my Wolf eel, but I like to know a bit about the background of the fish I keep. Any help would be greatly appreciated! <Here you go! http://www.wetwebmedia.com/anglerfishes.htm http://www.wetwebmedia.com/indoanglers.htm http://www.wetwebmedia.com/angleridfaqs.htm Happy reading!  -Mich> <<Actually... this is most likely a Batrachoidid: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/batrachoididae.htm  RMF>> Brian

Snail growth and toadfish ID.  10/24/06        Hello Crew,    <Danny>                  Thanks for taking the time to read my letter. First off, I have an adult toadfish but I'm having problems getting the exact species name. I have included a picture. <Mmm, not here... have you perused fishbase.org re the Batrachoidids? Is this a tropical West Atlantic species? See Paul Humann and Ned DeLoach's works...> He's given me no problems aside from eating all his tankmates. <Not atypical for the group/family> Second, one of my turbo snails has developed a white cottony growth on his shell. There are two of them and were not part of him when the snail was bought. I picked him up out of the water to get a better picture and the growths held up without water. I don't think there is anything on his shell that would support bacteria or mold growth, so sponges maybe? <Perhaps> Also, I found a growth at the top of the white growth that resembles a feather duster. The (radiola?) from the duster are very similar top what's hanging out ton my snail. I also found the same white growth on one of my filter pads. <What a planet eh? I'm not leaving! Nothing to worry re here>   Thanks,   Daniel <Welcome. Bob Fenner>

Question about my sick Toadfish - PLEASE reply!  9/25/06 Good evening, <AM here now...>     I'm a college freshman with an attachment to toadfish. <Batrachoidids... neat family of animals>   I formerly lived on the east coast, where I participated in a marine science course and was introduced (quite by accident) to the species. <There are a few...>   When I moved to the mid-west for college, toadfish number one (an oyster toad) <Likely Opsanus tau> went to the Baltimore Aquarium, and on my arrival out west, I discovered a petstore that had accidentally ordered an orange toadfish.  I had missed the oyster toad greatly (despite the hell the silly little fish put me through) and decided to adopt the orange toad.     This guy was in the petstore for about a year, during which time they were giving him freshwater feeders. <An exceedingly poor practice for all involved> When I had the oyster toad, I hand-fed him pieces of squid and shrimp - occasionally a small saltwater fish (a damsel or something) but had never given him freshwater fish. <Much better>   Well, the orange toad has been a part of my life for about two and a half weeks...and I've been keeping to the same feeding regimen that the shop had him on.  As of two days ago, he started looking a little off-color, and has stopped eating.  Upon a few trips to pet stores in the area I learned that freshwater fish are very bad for saltwater fish to eat...and am rather worried about the toadfish now. <...>     I bought a couple damsels for him and put them in his tank, but he's shown no interest.  I've also bought a bag of frozen silversides for him - but he's been on live food for so long I have no idea if he'll ever warm up to the idea of a dead meal. Water stats: (If helpful) Salinity: 30, pH: 8.2 1.) Is there an all-around medication I can give him to help him recover? <Mmm, no> If so, what is it called and where can I find it? 2.) Is there anything else I can do to undo whatever damage a year's worth of freshwater PetSmart feeders has done him? <Wait, have patience, hope... may be symptomatic... some sort of fatty degeneration, a deficiency syndrome... even a physical/blockage...> 3.) Though I do have several years' saltwater fish care under my belt, any additional advice you could offer on the topic of toadfish (as it seems I'm permanently doomed to coexist with this animals!) would be most appreciated - I've noticed information on the internet is somewhat lacking. Thank you, ~ Julia    a.k.a: The crazy toadfish caretaker. <Really just a matter of time going by... and your changing to more appropriate foodstuffs if this fish spontaneously remits. Bob Fenner>

"Freshwater Lionfish"   1/7/06 Hello I have had trouble learning what the species requires I searched your site an your crew says its a Sculpin or something but here is the fish that I have. This is the scientific name Batrachus trispinosus.  This is a picture of the fish your pictures weren't the same thing. There are numerous common names as with all fish, but I get the best results on Google using the name Freshwater Lionfish. >> Sorry I hit send too early my cut and paste is all garbled by Word: Batrachomoeus trispinosus (current valid name) comes from Brackish water, in the Mekong and around Indonesia. There is a very similar fish from the North and Atlantic coast in the mangroves of South America called Batrachus surinamensis, also found around the mouth of the Amazon in Brazil and points south. As suggested they will need some salt in the water. They get quite big, I have seen them over 16 inches. Other than that they have the same requirements as marine species in the group. <Thank you for this. There are indeed a few species offered as "FW Lions"... almost all are brackish to marine animals. Bob Fenner> FW Toadfish, using WWM 7/26/05 I was at the pet store the other day and they had a freshwater lionfish. I thought he was way cool.   She told me although pretty calm during the day.  He was active at night and I needed to be careful of his spines.   She informed that if I ever got pricked by the spines. I needed to call 911 because I could go into anaphylactic shock and die. <Mmm, no... not from a Batrachoidid>    Then I went on another site and it said they were harmless. confused? help <Please read here: http://www.google.com/custom?q=toadfish&sitesearch=wetwebmedia.com Bob Fenner>

Toadfish Pics Dear Mr. Fenner, <Brittany> A while ago one of my toadfish died. I put it outside and an after  death reflex happened. It's mouth opened up completely. I have  some pictures of his teeth. Apparently this kind of toadfish have 2+ rows  of teeth and it is amazing. If you are interested in pictures please let me  know. Brittany,
<Please do send these along. Bob Fenner>
Re: Toadfish Pics (file included) Please let me know if any of these pictures are going to be used on the website. I sent the pictures in their original form for quality. <I would like to post the first, with credit to you. Bob Fenner> <<Looking for..>><Sorry re Mar... here tis. RMF>

Oyster toadfish Hello.<Hello Pearl> I am doing a school project on the oyster toadfish and I was just wondering if you might be able to answer a few Q's for me. I answered 1 from your site, but I still have 5 more to go. Well write me at XXXX@msn if you are willing to help me. <I will direct you to this info I came up with. <Good luck with the project.  James (Salty Dog)> Thank-you, http://search.earthlink.net/search?area=earthlink-ws&q=toadfish Pearl Foster Bloated toadfish I went fishing in N.S.W. last week and caught a toadfish when I pulled it in it filled up with water can you tell me How and why they do this please? <Mmm, I suspect this is some sort of reflex defensive mechanism... maybe doing so makes these sedentary fishes a bit less edible... physically, psychologically? Bob Fenner>

Another rare fish discovered (from Eric Cohen, Sea Dwelling Creatures) Bob...my buddy! How the hell are ya?  I hope just grand! <Yes, back from FLA, diving, visiting Di's mom... looking at bunk weather in San Diego, thinking of the tsunami mess out in the I.O., wishing I was there to help> Just wanted to let you know what we have collected a rare Coral toadfish -   Sanopus splendidus that was found in Belize.  The articles I have been able  to find on this baby says only known to be found in Cozumel.  Well......my   friend....I guess then this finding just changes everything now doesn't  it? <Well, not everything, but this "Sapo" I have only seen in Cozumel... and I do wish I had Paul Humann's experience, pix for these toadfishes!> Anyway....if you want to see the photo....just check it out on the cool   stuff section of our website.  Scottie threw down some nice photos  today.  I am hoping that the Shedd aquarium takes the fish.  Long Beach  has no Atlantic stuff... bummer. Best regards, Eric <Oh? Am sure they're most concerned with Pacific displays. Hope to see you soon, Bob F, back in da saddle>
Re: another rare fish discovered
Bobbie baby! <Eric> Luckily we spoke with the fine friends of the Stephen Birch Aquarium and that is where the new home for the Sanopus greenfieldorum will be living out his wonderful life.  So if you have a chance to stop by, you can see him close up. Yeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee <Hope to> Take care and have a great new holiday. Eric <Thank you my friend. To you and yours as well. See you in the new year. BobF>

Toadfish Dear Bob, Can you tell me if two Orange Toad Fish can go together? Sincerely Blake <Blake, Yes, two toad fish can go together as long as they are the same size.  If one is bigger than the other then the smaller one might get eaten.  Even if they are the same size, one might try and eat the other.  Good Luck. MikeB.>

Oyster toadfish  Hi. I recently purchased an Opsanus tau (oyster toadfish) and was wondering whether or not he could be tank mates with an Opsanus beta (orange toadfish). I know one is brackish and one is full marine.  <Don't think/believe that either would be "happy", live that long being converted to the environment of the other... besides, this is NOT a social animal>  Is it possible to combine them and convert the oyster toadfish over to marine or would I be better off just not trying it all together. I cant find much information on them being tankmates or having any at all...I am not sure the oyster toadfish would appreciate full marine conditions, although it was tossed up in the discussion. Thanks for the help!  <I have seen O. tau in the wild (my pix are on WWM)... always solitary, shallow water... and a few times in Atlantic seaboard public aquaria... Bob Fenner>

Re: Freshwater stonefish Hi Bob <Hello Kerri> I contacted you a while ago about our "freshwater stonefish" (unclassified, but of the family Batrachoididae), of which I have been meaning to send you a picture and so I have finally sent you 2 small video clips... Sorry for the delay. I hope that you find these clips useful. This "stonefish" is from Gambia and we are unable to sex them at the moment. <Can't open them... something to do with no match with XP and RealPlayer> Anyway, he seems to be sick or stressed and I was hoping you could help me. He binged on live fish - small tilapia and guppies - for about 3 months and then he just started fasting, he exhibited what I would assume was hibernating behaviour, always hiding, not moving much, but no signs of stress or disease. This has been going for about two months now. Then last week we noticed that the bulge in his abdomen - where had eaten so much - has a depression running down the centre, like he has 2 swollen lobes running down his abdomen. We were advised by the pet shop that this may be a sign of constipation, and then yesterday we found droppings (for the first time in 2 months), but they were small and whitish-grey, which I know is a definite sign of constipation. He has also begun breathing deeply, taking large "gulps" often. <Could be "natural" (non-constipated) behavior> Please would you give me your opinion of what might be wrong with my fish, and might these two symptoms be related? Is there anything I can feed him or treat him with (bearing in mind he only eats live fish)? Thank you for your time, Regards, Kerri <Perhaps an internal blockage... might be due to a parasitic condition, a nutritional deficiency. You could look at the fecal material under a microscope... Perhaps administer Epsom Salts (either as a bath or directly to the water)... Is the animal in straight freshwater? Bob Fenner>

Does He Bite? -- FW Lionfish (12/11/2003) Hi, I could use a little bit of help. <Steve Allen here, I'll give it a shot.>I just purchased this fish from a pet store. The owner told me that it is a freshwater lion fish. <Better to research before you buy> He is a strange looking fish but beautiful just the same. <my favorite kind> He looks like one of those rock fish you would find in the ocean, at the same time he looks like a mud skipper. Anyway my question is what are the care requirements for him? What pH level should he be in? What does he eat? I have tried several types of food but he doesn't seem to be eating anything. What type of fish can I house with him? Right now he is housed with some Angle fish, Parrots, and Pink Convicts. It doesn't seem to be a problem yet but I would just like to make sure. I would be very thankful for any information that you can give me on my strange little friend. <Could he be one of these?       http://www.wetwebmedia.com/batrachoididae.htm   If so, the info you need should be available from the link. If not, we may need a picture to get an ID. You could also ask the pet store for Genus & species. Thank you, Dawn <You're welcome. BTW, I'm sure you like the pretty fond you sent your question in, but it is very difficult for us presbyopic 40-somethings to read. Please send future inquiries in a standard book such Times New Roman--much easier on the eyes.>

Fresh/Brackish Water Stonefish Question (11/21/03) Hello! <Hi! Ananda here this afternoon> We have a problem with our stonefish. We bought him about half a week ago. He is a fresh/brackish water variety, and they say he is non-venomous. I cant find his exact breed in your pages here because from what I can find, all the freshwater/brackish water ones are at least slightly venomous. <Do check back with your retailer and see if they can get more info regarding the species name.> Anyhow, he is handfed two tuffies a day, as was instructed by the specialist we bought him from. <Minnows?? I would try to wean him off of live food, as it could easily carry disease.> Well, today for the first time he wont eat, backs away from our hands, and appears to be gasping, half opened to fully opened mouth. There appears to be no toughie stuck in his mouth, or anything like that. The water quality is normal, no ammonia or chlorine, ph is in the clear. <I'd really prefer some numbers on these... did you check nitrites and nitrates as well?> He lives in a 55 gallon tank with a small silver dollar, three black skirt tetras, two paradise gouramis, a red tailed shark, and two African butterflies. Everyone is getting along fine. I vacuumed the gravel today and did a 15% or so water change. Would that have hurt him? <Hmmm. Possibly something got stirred up from the gravel and was ingested by the fish? Did you vacuum the entire gravel bed? Depending on conditions, that can disturb the nitrifying bacteria enough to create a mini-spike of ammonia.> I'm concerned for my stonefish, we have grown quite attached. I put new salt in the water for the amount that I remove each time I do a water change. Any suggestions? <Yep, a different tank for the stonefish, possibly all by his lonesome self until you find out what species he is and whether or not he's going to need brackish water. I'm a little concerned about the salt -- how much are you using? Some of your other species are salt-intolerant.> -Laura <Hope this helps, and do please ask if you have any more questions! --Ananda>

Freshwater Stonefish Can you give some info on what's called stone fish is it truly freshwater fish .. I'm thinking purchasing one for my collection of oddballs... <Please see here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/batrachoididae.htm and the linked FAQs (in blue, at top) re freshwater "Lionfishes", and "Stonefishes". These are not freshwater fishes, but brackish to marine. Bob Fenner> Thanks , Ed

FW Lion? Hi We have bought what we were told is a freshwater stonefish. We have no idea of it's scientific name or where to find information on it. Please would you help us!!!! If you need a photo, I can scan and send one to you. <... you bought an animal w/o knowing its husbandry requirements? Is it here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/batrachoididae.htm? Good luck. Bob Fenner> Thank you so much for your help, Regards, Kerri and Ian Hudson

Next stop on the research train: Fishbase.org (05/29/03) Hi there <Hi! Ananda here, doing some research this morning...> I recently bought a 3 inch Batrichthys grunniens and I have got no info concerning it <As soon as I have a genus and species name for a fish, I head for http://www.fishbase.org to get their info... they list the common name as the "grunting toadfish". With that and a bit more info from Fishbase' page, you can then find more info elsewhere. Also... buying a fish before researching it is generally not a great idea... could be like purchasing a pet rat not knowing that your cat will think it's a tasty treat...! > It took me hell just to identify it!!! <Doesn't help that they've changed the name on it, too. The current Latin name for this fish is Allenbatrachus grunniens.> just wandering whether will you guys will be able to provide me more info regarding it (e.g. water conditions, tank mates, feeding) <Heh. I'm going to suggest you head over to Fishbase and take a look. When you get to the main page, just type in "Batrichthys" in the Genus field under Scientific Name. Click the search button, and the list of all Batrichthys species is shown. Scan down that until you find grunniens, click, and voila! Your fish. Since Fishbase is a work-in-progress and not all of the entries have 100% of the possible info, I like to look at the entries for several species in a genus. That may help here. And if you have a digital camera, do send the good folks at Fishbase a photo...> thanks a lot <You're welcome. Have fun wandering Fishbase! --Ananda>

Lionfish (Fresh Water), reading WWM Bob, Is a fresh water lionfish poisonous? The pet store I bought it from had no clue. Both the pet store and I have done extensive research, and we can't find anything on them. Input http://wetwebmedia.com/ insert freshwater lionfish in the search tool on the bottom of the page. Bob Fenner> Thanks,

Become a Sponsor Features:
Daily FAQs FW Daily FAQs SW Pix of the Day FW Pix of the Day New On WWM
Helpful Links Hobbyist Forum Calendars Admin Index Cover Images
Featured Sponsors: