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tds2264

Clown Fish Mate

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I am looking for some guidance from more experienced reefers!  I had a pair of clowns, had is the key work,  as the male somehow manage to jump out thru a small gap, landing on the lid screen during the night, is no longer with us.  For some time now the female has taken up residence in an Octospawn, she did not let him near it or he had no interest, not sure. I found her to be pretty aggressive towards him in general, close to the Octospawn always, at time would swim to where he was to show him she was boss.  My questions are: Would it be wise to get another mate for her, or is the possibility of her killing any new clown fish an issue? Lastly will she be fine by herself and her Octospawn?

 

Thanks for your comments in advance!

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What kind of a clownfish is it?

 

Ocellaris and Perculas are generally OK with adding a new mate (just make sure it's plenty smaller). Nasty clowns like tomato's, maroons, etc are notoriously difficult to pair, and can actually kill many potential suitors before liking their new mate. There's always a possibility though, no matter which species of clown you have, that she'll not like the guy you pick for her. If you really want that second clown in there, go for it. But, she doesn't NEED to have a mate in there if you're not liking the risk of aggression.

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If ocellaris or a percula, it shouldn't be too bad if you find a considerably smaller clown (ideally the smallest juvenile you can find) and use a breeder box. If you don't have a breeder box, you can add the smaller fish and keep an eye on them and separate if the aggression kicks up. Worst experience I've had with the roughly 6 pairs I've had was a maroon/ocellaris hybrid female that nearly beat a black ocellaris to death over the course of a few weeks before finally accepting him. The black clown was ragged for months, but they ended up forming a really strong bond. Regardless, you'll want to have a separate small quarantine tank up and ready in the event that the female is hyper aggressive and a threat to kill the new clown. Rehoming clowns is relatively easy in the area and some of the LFS' will take them back for credit if the pairing is unsuccessful (of course clarify before purchase).

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If you could get a larger clown would be best thing, especially she would change to a male. Move the coral around, changing up the environment, or put in the sump for a day or so to adjust.

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I disagree. He’s got the female already. Two female clowns in a tank almost always ends up with a single female left and a dead fish. 

 

There are very few reports of female clowns turning male. The progression happens the other way: male to female. Even IF it would have been the female to jump and you’re left with the male, you’ll still have best success with trying to repair by putting in a smaller clown than the one you have. The already established fish will exert dominance, and dominance for clowns also equals female. So adding a smaller one will by nature be more submissive, and you’re mimicking nature’s natural progressions rather than trying to go against the grain. 

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Either way you do it, you could always throw the one you have in the sump for a few days after adding the new fish.

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