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You are here: Home Volume IV September 2005 Hot Tips: Aggressive Fish Tips

Hot Tips: Aggressive Fish Tips

By Advanced Aquarist's Readers Posted Sep 14, 2005 08:00 PM Pomacanthus Publications, Inc.
This month, our readers discuss tips they have for keeping aggressive fish.

A selection of useful tidbits of information and tricks for the marine aquarist submitted by Advanced Aquarist's readership. Readers are encouraged to post them to our Hot Tips sticky in the General Reefkeeping Discussion forum or send their tips to for possible publication. Next month's Hot Tip theme will be "Your Favorite Lighting and Why".

Aggressive Fish Tips:

I guess that the lack of answer reinforces my thinking: just don't! If you have a nice and peaceful reef tank, one of the worst thing you can do is add an aggressive fish that will terrorize/kill all of the shy/peaceful inhabitants in your reef. If you want aggressive fish, just make a special tank just for them.


Other than the previous advice of "don't rock the boat", If you have a new aggressive fish, try to reaarange the aquascape to negate any territorial issues there may be with established fish.


Always keep one eye on the fish, and one eye on the algae scrubber stick, net, or whatever your other hand is holding/doing in/near the tank or water. It may help keep you from getting nailed by a tesselata eel like i was. ;)

Many of the aggressive fish, including the more sedate by nature fish, like lions, can be surprisingly quick and sudden, and many of the aggressive predators have other dangers in addition to teeth (tesselatas have an anticoaglant in their saliva that can keep a bite wound bleeding for hours, and make a hand go numb for a day).

NEVER hand feed a lion fish, regardless of how 'tame' you think it may be.

Use good sound stocking rate rules, remember that 1" of an 8" grouper is like 6" of damselfish, at a minimum, and each damsel should have a minimum of 3-5 gallons of water for maximum comfort/life support.

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