Has anyone kept orchid dottyback?

Discussion in 'Marine Fish Forum' started by Stpaulhawk, May 14, 2018.

  1. Stpaulhawk

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    I'm preplanning what fish I will put in my tank and the internet reports on this fish are all over the map. Some say peaceful, some say terrible. All say it's the best option of the dottyback family, but that doesn't mean much to me due to my ignorance.

    Any thoughts?
     
  2. capman

    capman I contributed!
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    I have found them to be relatively laid back fish. Things will depend on what other fish you plan to keep with them, of course, and tank size, and hiding places maybe too of course.

    I have four in a 36" x 24" x 24" tank at the moment. There is one clear pair that is spawning. And two more that I think are females that may or may not be involved in spawning at the moment - there is some aggression toward these two, but things are seeming stable. I raised them up together from tiny fish that I got last fall.
     
  3. Gary

    Gary Started in '96
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    I had a single fish for many years in my old system back in the 90's. It was a favorite and I was sad to see him go in he end. He was the smallest fish in that tank so no aggression issues at all.
     
  4. Ben Nicholls

    Ben Nicholls TCMAS Old Timer
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    Never had a problem with them either. Have one in my tank now.
     
  5. Fiver

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    I have one in my 33 long. No problems, but he’s really the only fish living in that zone (lower level, rockwork). I added him after my pair of clowns and lawnmower blenny. Added a starckii damsel after with no issues.

    People love the color, and it’s a nice surprise because he’ll pop out from inside or under a rock when people aren’t expecting it/don’t know he’s in the tank.
     
  6. OP
    Stpaulhawk

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    What do you have for tankmates? How small did you add them?

    Fiver- do you think it would have been an issue if you didn't add the fish last?

    Thanks both!
     
  7. Nemo's Buddy

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    My Dotty Back is a bully to any new smaller fish I add. He will chase the new arrivals for several days until the new boundaries are established. I would make Shure its the last Nano sized fish added.
     
  8. Fiver

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    My dottyback was pretty mellow when I added the damsel last. I think it helped that my dottyback is really the only fish I keep that lives in the rockwork, although it certainly comes out in the open. My scape is pretty minimal.

    That said, I did add it nearly last because of what I had read about possible aggression.

    If anything, I would have added the pair of clowns last, but they were such a deal that I couldn’t pass them up.
     
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  9. Chad Vossen

    Chad Vossen Vossen kinda rhymes with awesome
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    Orchid dottybacks are great fish. I've got a pair in my 75 gallon that spawn every 7 days. Their babies make great zooplankton for the corals too.

    Also a fun species to raise. I've got a batch going right now.
     
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  10. Leicester56

    Leicester56 I contributed!
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    My orchid dottyback is a good tank citizen. Doesn’t bother anyone. The only somewhat annoying habit is that he takes mouthfuls of sand while digging tunnels for food and spits them out on my corals. It is a small species though and the effect is minimal.
     
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  11. OP
    Stpaulhawk

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    This is what I mean, several "peaceful" posts and one "bully" post. Lots of different opinions.

    Thanks everyone for your advice. Very helpful.
     
  12. OP
    Stpaulhawk

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    Very cool! Do you have any pictures of the little ones?
     
  13. capman

    capman I contributed!
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    Mine were really small fish raised by Chad. I had the group in a 20 gallon tank for some months. Had a few losses due to a crab that I didn't know was in there (I think that was the cause of the losses). Then in the larger tank I'm pretty sure the large male beat up and killed another slightly smaller fish that had the audacity to also develop into a male - this was an abrupt occurrence that I didn't see coming really. It is pretty laid back in the tank now though. There are lots of peppermint shrimp in the tank, as well as a mature pair of Darwin clowns. They mostly ignore the clownfish, and vice versa.

    In another tank of the same size there is a pair of percula clowns (21 year old fish!), a pair of Bangaii cardinals, a good sized rabbitfish, some engineer gobies, a marine betta, a mature male coral beauty angel, and a large mature neon dottyback. Neon dottybacks are much larger fish than orchid dottybacks, with a reputation for being much more aggressive. It ignores all the fish except for the coral beauty, and the coral beauty ignores all the fish except the dottyback. They spar a bit (I suspect they annoy each other due to their similar coloration?), but it is not too bad, and the coral beauty pretty much keeps the dottyback in its place.

    My general sense is that dottybacks in general seem like they are great tankmates for clownfish, though my experience extends to only these two species, and also a beautiful Pseudochromis porphyreus that I had years ago (a favorite species of mine, but also with a reputation for aggression). That P. porphyreus ignored most tank mates (including some blue damsels), but really didn't like a six-line wrasse when it was first introduced (things sort of settled down between them though, well, sort of).
     
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  14. Chad Vossen

    Chad Vossen Vossen kinda rhymes with awesome
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  15. capman

    capman I contributed!
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    How old are those dottybacks?
     

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