Canary wrasse and pipefish in same tank

living_tribunal

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I have had a very lazy pipefish in my tank for about a month and a half now. All was well and then I added a canary wrasse two weeks ago.

Everything was great until today. I noticed the canary wrasse nipping and bullying the poor pipe fish. The pipefish has always stayed in this one cave where the canary wrasse is now passing by frequently.

After I saw the canary nip at the pipefish, he then proceeded to mess with my mccoskers flasher wrasse (last thing he wants to do). It’s weird because the two have seemed very close until this point. They are constantly swimming with each other and hanging out.

I’ve only had really peaceful species until this point (two clowns, the pipe Fish, flasher wrasse, and blenny) and it’s the first time I’ve encountered any aggression.

My question is will this happen sometimes and not to be overly concerned with? Do I potentially need to feed more often? Should I potentially give the poor pipe fish to someone else?
 

Old Fritz

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First I have to ask how big of a tank do you have and how often do you feed?

A little aggression amongst fish isn't uncommon. In fact they kinda figure out a pecking order. Before my qt decided to explode my queen angel and sailfin tang would size each other up and the sailfin had a few small bites on him nothing too bad though. After a few days of that they stopped fighting. Now if your wrasse is going out of its way to attack the fish at every given moment there is an issue but typically small amount of aggression gets sorted out ime. Just be sure there is plenty of food for them and there is enough prime real estate as well. If aggression continues after that and it is having a drastic impact on your pipefish I recommend rehoming
 
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living_tribunal

living_tribunal

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First I have to ask how big of a tank do you have and how often do you feed?

A little aggression amongst fish isn't uncommon. In fact they kinda figure out a pecking order. Before my qt decided to explode my queen angel and sailfin tang would size each other up and the sailfin had a few small bites on him nothing too bad though. After a few days of that they stopped fighting. Now if your wrasse is going out of its way to attack the fish at every given moment there is an issue but typically small amount of aggression gets sorted out ime. Just be sure there is plenty of food for them and there is enough prime real estate as well. If aggression continues after that and it is having a drastic impact on your pipefish I recommend rehoming
Thanks for the input and that all makes a lot of sense.

To answer your questions, I haven’t seen any aggression like this before. It’s also very odd that the canary wrasse decided to mess with my flasher. The two have been good friends. It all happened in the span of maybe 5-10 minutes and it looked like the canary was trying to tell the pipe to go away.

My tank is 65G with a lot of open free roaming space but also caves and tunnels.
87226425-B33B-481E-942B-6D3E31213820.jpeg



What may be the cause of this is that I added the canary and pipe to get rid of a pest in my tank. To encourage it, I fed one large meal in the morning and another at night. They have definitely done major work on getting rid of the pest so maybe I need to return to 3 feedings a day.

I feed the pipefish more often though as he is very lazy and doesn’t like to hunt.

I feed a full mysis cube and a full cyclops cube a day for all of the 5 fish. They have also been eating the pest amphipods that bred out of control in my tank. The amphipods keep demolishing my copepod population which may be the problem here.

I’m starting an external tisbe culture next week. Should that help?
 
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Old Fritz

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if the aggression happened after a food source got kinda scarce that could be the cause aggression so adding a reliable food source that they can constantly graze for should help in that regard. But like I said a lot of the time its more them just setting their pecking order up.
 
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living_tribunal

living_tribunal

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if the aggression happened after a food source got kinda scarce that could be the cause aggression so adding a reliable food source that they can constantly graze for should help in that regard. But like I said a lot of the time its more them just setting their pecking order up.
I’ll continue to monitor it and see if the tisbe culture helps.

Canary wrasses are for the most part pretty peaceful right? I know they are more aggressive than flashers but should I be weary of the canary and the pipe being together?
 

Old Fritz

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I’ll continue to monitor it and see if the tisbe culture helps.

Canary wrasses are for the most part pretty peaceful right? I know they are more aggressive than flashers but should I be weary of the canary and the pipe being together?
I wouldn't worry about it too much. I've kept pipefish and seahorses with what people would normally deem more aggressive fish like angels and they do fine you just have to target feed pipefish and seahorses while making sure everyone else gets enough food
 
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living_tribunal

living_tribunal

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I wouldn't worry about it too much. I've kept pipefish and seahorses with what people would normally deem more aggressive fish like angels and they do fine you just have to target feed pipefish and seahorses while making sure everyone else gets enough food
I think it will be fine as well once I’m able to build my copepod population back up.

Thanks for easing my stress, I was so worried for the poor pipefish!
 

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