Halichoeres wrasse suddenly hiding

Calm Blue Ocean

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I'm trying to decide if I should be alarmed or not.

My Halichoeres biocellatus has been hiding all day today. She has a little notch in the rocks that she will sometimes lay in if frightened but she has been in there on and off since early this morning. She is normally a highly active fish.

I've had her for a little over a year.

Nothing strange about her appearance, color and scales look good aside from a small bite mark from the YWG who tried to tell her to move along. The wrasse has always been a nervous nelly but nothing has changed in the tank that I can see to make her "afraid" all day.

All other fish behaving normally (2x ocellaris clowns, YWG, Midas Blenny, Pink Streaked Wrasse). No new additions.

Any chance this strange behavior could simply be part of transitioning to male?

At what point should I be concerned here?
 
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Calm Blue Ocean

Calm Blue Ocean

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Is the fish eating? Any other symptoms? You've already mentioned some aggression in the tank. It happens while you're not watching.

She hid during breakfast (pellets) and dinner (frozen mysis) but did poke her nose out when I put a pinch of freeze dried brine in at lunch (not a normally scheduled feeding but junk food in hopes of drawing her out). The YWG will certainly get after anyone who lingers too long in the vicinity of the shrimp cave but it's not a real bully type situation. Unfortunately the "I'm scared" nook that the wrasse defaults too is right above the shrimp cave, so maybe not the smartest.

The good news is that even though she was still hiding at 5:30pm (lights ramping down) she did go to bed properly in the sand by 5:55pm which is business as usual for her.

No other symptoms. Her eyes seem active and bright. And this is a normal hiding place for her, just not for such an extended period of time.
 
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Calm Blue Ocean

Calm Blue Ocean

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Update on the frightened wrasse.

Woke up this morning to the same scene from yesterday and wondered if I should maybe revise this thread with an Emergency tag:

wrasse.jpg


Didn't come out for breakfast and the baby brines hadn't started hatching yet. Then the pistol shrimp started to show his annoyance at her chosen hiding spot. As much as I was loath to, I decided to gently shoo her out of the spot before we had a bad accident. There are other safer hiding spots.

And you know what? She's acted pretty much normal ever since. Maybe a bit more clingy with the clowns than usual but she ate her mysis tonight and has been pecking at the rocks for pods all day. I'm truly mystified. We'll see if she's all business as usual tomorrow. She definitely gave me a good scare and hopefully whatever was up has passed. I really like this fish.
 
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Calm Blue Ocean

Calm Blue Ocean

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My fairy did that after I added flashers, he chased them and the next day he would NOT come out.
The day after he was fine...

I think wrasses are just weird.

Couldn't agree more. This fish is the smartest, craziest, and biggest personality in the tank. This morning she was swimming loops around the frag rack and this afternoon she's hunting amphipods with stealthy precision. Don't tell the others but she might be my favorite for all those reasons. Never a dull day with a wrasse.
 

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