Clownfish Feeding Habits

jbilliel

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I have two clownfish that will refuse to leave their small section of the tank regardless of what is going on. I have an automatic feeder on the other side of the tank (away from the overflow) and no matter what I do these dumb clownfish will not go eat. If I don't feed them in their area they won't eat.

How do I get them to feed with all the other fish? Do I just stop supplementally feeding them and force to them to go eat with the others?

Any thoughts?
 
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jbilliel

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It's a 90 gallon tank with the overflow at the 3/4" mark on the back wall and of course they like to hang out behind the overflow in the 1/4" between the overflow and the glass. The feeder is on the other side of the tank.

The others know that once the powerheads turn off its feeding time, but the clown fish are dense...
 
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SDK

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Your Clowns are not dense, and are unlikely to change their behavior. They are programmed to look for an anemone to live in, and will pick something else as a substitute if one is not available.

These are fish that are most likely going to stay within a square foot of their home base. It's up to you to get food to them.

My tank also has the feeder at the opposite end of where my Occeleris pair live. Instead of shutting the powerheads fully off at feeding time, mine are programmed to lightly blow the food around the tank, and they pick off what floats past. That is their natural feeding mode...
 
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jbilliel

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I do not have an anemone. Perhaps I should get one?

My clowns are weird as they really don't hide anywhere. They just stay behind the overflow box as I think the flow in the tank is a little stronger than they prefer.
 

SDK

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If your tank maturity and lighting are adequate, you can certainly try an anemone, although it won't solve the immediate feeding problem.

There are also variables to that strategy that won't be in your control. Not the least of which would include where the anemone decides to settle, and if the clowns decide to host it at all....
 
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jbilliel

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I have two neptune wav pumps at less than 10% so I am running just about the bare minimum that I can. All the other fish and soft corals love it, but the clowns seem to not like the flow as much
 

saltnut

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Jeez if they swim around when the pumps are off which you stated happens before the feeder starts I am surprised they don't find the food. Maybe add a bit of food between the feeder and their favorite spot to get them closer. I do not know my clowns are always ready to eat any thing any time. I only use a feeder when on vacation. How long have you had them? Are they still adjusting to your tank?
 

Hincapiej4

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They are happy in that area....you can't control them. If they eat when you target feed them, then feed in that area. You can't force anything in your tank do what you want because you want it. You'll learn that heavily with anemones.

Clowns stay close to what they are hosting...it's how they are built. They bring back whatever they can't eat themselves and feed what they are living in. A rock, a nemmie, a powerhead...anything, they'll feed it.
 
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jbilliel

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I have had the clowns for 6+ months so this not new, but I am tired of feeding them separately as I am trying to automate everything with my feeder. lol
 

fowler279

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Mine know when the pump goes off where they are going to be fed. Its strange reading this thread as mine dont act anything like that. I do have one that stays on one side of the tank but he does venture out quite a bit. The other one hosts under one of my rock structures but has become more adventurous as well. When i come home and get ready to feed they are right in the front right corner waiting to eat. Once they are done they go back to their normal spots. Maybe its due to the size as mine is only a 20G.
 
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LeftyReefer

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Your Clowns are not dense, and are unlikely to change their behavior. They are programmed to look for an anemone to live in, and will pick something else as a substitute if one is not available.

Oh I beg to differ!

My clowns are definitely dense. I have provided them a beautiful (and expensive) anemone and yet one clown chooses to host my cheap jebao powerhead in one corner while my other clown hosts my tunze magnet scraper in the other corner. When they aren't hosting my tank hardware, they are usually wrangling bubbles. I think they were very appropriately named clownfish and not rocket scientist fish for a good reason.
 

Hincapiej4

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Oh I beg to differ!

My clowns are definitely dense. I have provided them a beautiful (and expensive) anemone and yet one clown chooses to host my cheap jebao powerhead in one corner while my other clown hosts my tunze magnet scraper in the other corner. When they aren't hosting my tank hardware, they are usually wrangling bubbles. I think they were very appropriately named clownfish and not rocket scientist fish for a good reason.

Hah!
 

ThRoewer

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That's just how anemonefish are.
I have some that will chase a bite through the entire tank - usually the larger "clarki"-types (bicinctus, milii, chrysargyrus) and maroons - while others - most of my clownfish (percula and ocellaris) - don't leave their anemone, flowerpot, or corner and just wait for the food to come to them.
 

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