Selecting a damsel or Chromis for my tank?

Zionas

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Well I’ve got unfortunate news. It looks like my tank will be below 100 gallons after all. The dealer said 26” (as per the original plan) would require extra suspension. So it’s decided that my tank would be 36”x24”x24” which gives me 85 gallons to work with.

To state the obvious. No tangs or butterflies would be considered. No Foxface either. I’m highly hesitant to put a Marine Betta in a tank of that size. Even if I could for a while, they grow to 8” and I’m worried about my small fish and crustaceans. Also heard they’re difficult to feed with anything other than live foods?

So, I know this will give me flak, but I’m willing to consider a damsel or two, or a damsel + Chromis for my tank. Damsels, as I already know, are extremely aggressive, but I’ve heard the Chrysiptera genus can be mild tempered. I’m looking at adding 1-2 Yellowtail Blue, Springer’s, Azure, Allen’s, Starcki’s, Rolland’s, Talbot’s, or Canary Deepwater.

I am also considering 1 Chrysiptera damsel + 1 chromis, most likely a Blue Green or a Black Axil. However, I have read from many places that Chromis are extremely susceptible to Uronema, which is extremely deadly to all fish. That makes me hesitant.

If I add a damsel of the Chrysiptera genus or maybe even a pair, what order should I put them in? I’ve made a list of all their tankmates / potential tankmates. I know Blue Green Chromis are pretty peaceful.


x2 Common Ocellaris clownfish / Black Ocellaris (captive bred)

x1 Yellow Watchman Goby + Pistol Shrimp

x1 basslet of some kind (Royal Gramma-peaceful, Swissguard Basslet-semi-aggressive, Yellow Assessor-peaceful)

x1 dwarf angel (CB, Flame, Atlantic Cherub, Flameback, Rusty, Half Black-all semi aggressive)


Can any dwarf angels like happily and healthily in a tank that’s 85 gallons and only 3 feet long? It’s a toss up between getting the 3” Cherub / African Flameback or one of the 4”.


I would love a Marine Betta, but what I’m thinking is should I get a Marine Betta I’ll only do five fish maximum. This means making the Marine Betta the centerpiece fish and axing either the basslet or the dwarf angel.

With a Marine Betta, here’s what I’m thinking:

x2 Common Ocellaris / Black Ocellaris (tank bred)

x1 Marine Betta

x1 basslet / dwarf angel

x1 Chrysiptera / Blue Green Reef Chromis / 1 Halichoeres wrasse or YC Hogfish



I would love advice. Sorry about yesterday when I said I’ve finalized my stocking. Things can change so quickly.
 

Hercaluis

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Well I’ve got unfortunate news. It looks like my tank will be below 100 gallons after all. The dealer said 26” (as per the original plan) would require extra suspension. So it’s decided that my tank would be 36”x24”x24” which gives me 85 gallons to work with.

To state the obvious. No tangs or butterflies would be considered. No Foxface either. I’m highly hesitant to put a Marine Betta in a tank of that size. Even if I could for a while, they grow to 8” and I’m worried about my small fish and crustaceans. Also heard they’re difficult to feed with anything other than live foods?

So, I know this will give me flak, but I’m willing to consider a damsel or two, or a damsel + Chromis for my tank. Damsels, as I already know, are extremely aggressive, but I’ve heard the Chrysiptera genus can be mild tempered. I’m looking at adding 1-2 Yellowtail Blue, Springer’s, Azure, Allen’s, Starcki’s, Rolland’s, Talbot’s, or Canary Deepwater.

I am also considering 1 Chrysiptera damsel + 1 chromis, most likely a Blue Green or a Black Axil. However, I have read from many places that Chromis are extremely susceptible to Uronema, which is extremely deadly to all fish. That makes me hesitant.

If I add a damsel of the Chrysiptera genus or maybe even a pair, what order should I put them in? I’ve made a list of all their tankmates / potential tankmates. I know Blue Green Chromis are pretty peaceful.


x2 Common Ocellaris clownfish / Black Ocellaris (captive bred)

x1 Yellow Watchman Goby + Pistol Shrimp

x1 basslet of some kind (Royal Gramma-peaceful, Swissguard Basslet-semi-aggressive, Yellow Assessor-peaceful)

x1 dwarf angel (CB, Flame, Atlantic Cherub, Flameback, Rusty, Half Black-all semi aggressive)


Can any dwarf angels like happily and healthily in a tank that’s 85 gallons and only 3 feet long? It’s a toss up between getting the 3” Cherub / African Flameback or one of the 4”.


I would love a Marine Betta, but what I’m thinking is should I get a Marine Betta I’ll only do five fish maximum. This means making the Marine Betta the centerpiece fish and axing either the basslet or the dwarf angel.

With a Marine Betta, here’s what I’m thinking:

x2 Common Ocellaris / Black Ocellaris (tank bred)

x1 Marine Betta

x1 basslet / dwarf angel

x1 Chrysiptera / Blue Green Reef Chromis / 1 Halichoeres wrasse or YC Hogfish



I would love advice. Sorry about yesterday when I said I’ve finalized my stocking. Things can change so quickly.
Have you considered any Anthias....they are peaceful and extremely colorful. I never heard of anyone having problems with chromis at all....file fish is another option you can get multiple to school...wrasse are another option for you....if you’re are thinking of eventually getting a clam I would not get a dwarf angel....you could add gobies .....I have a cube 24x24 and have 3 file fish 2 midnight Clowns 1 Anthia 1 wrasse 1 mandarin goby with no problems....I had a dwarf angel in my cube as well lived happily until I got a clam and it started nipping at it so it had to go
 
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Zionas

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From what I’ve heard, Anthias can be difficult to feed, require multiple feedings a day, and it’s best to have a refugium for them. If I keep anthias I won’t be keeping just a single one, that’ll add to the bioload of my tank, which I’m worried about if it exceeds seven fish.

I have no plans to keep a clam, my tank will be fish + soft corals only (pick some easy species) + some invertebrates (snails, hermit crabs, shrimp). If I get a dwarf angel, would a 4” one work?

4” as in CB, Flame, Half Black etc. Or would it be better to stick to a 3” like a Cherub or African Flameback? Any suggestions?

Once again, if I do the damsel + Chromis route I’d get a single BG Reef Chromis, but it’s the uronema that scares me.

Would a pair of Chrysiptera be too risky for either themselves or the other fish I plan on adding?
 

Hercaluis

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From what I’ve heard, Anthias can be difficult to feed, require multiple feedings a day, and it’s best to have a refugium for them. If I keep anthias I won’t be keeping just a single one, that’ll add to the bioload of my tank, which I’m worried about if it exceeds seven fish.

I have no plans to keep a clam, my tank will be fish + soft corals only (pick some easy species) + some invertebrates (snails, hermit crabs, shrimp). If I get a dwarf angel, would a 4” one work?

4” as in CB, Flame, Half Black etc. Or would it be better to stick to a 3” like a Cherub or African Flameback? Any suggestions?

Once again, if I do the damsel + Chromis route I’d get a single BG Reef Chromis, but it’s the uronema that scares me.

Would a pair of Chrysiptera be too risky for either themselves or the other fish I plan on adding?
From what I’ve heard, Anthias can be difficult to feed, require multiple feedings a day, and it’s best to have a refugium for them. If I keep anthias I won’t be keeping just a single one, that’ll add to the bioload of my tank, which I’m worried about if it exceeds seven fish.

I have no plans to keep a clam, my tank will be fish + soft corals only (pick some easy species) + some invertebrates (snails, hermit crabs, shrimp). If I get a dwarf angel, would a 4” one work?

4” as in CB, Flame, Half Black etc. Or would it be better to stick to a 3” like a Cherub or African Flameback? Any suggestions?

Once again, if I do the damsel + Chromis route I’d get a single BG Reef Chromis, but it’s the uronema that scares me.

Would a pair of Chrysiptera be too risky for either themselves or the other fish I plan on adding?
I have no problem feeding my anthias I have fed once a day with no issues . Currently I feed oyster feast, rotifers,cyclops, mysis shrimp, reef roids, coral frenzy. I’ve fed my tank 4-5 times a day sometimes and no issues. I do have a large clean up crew 5 turbo Snail 4 Nassarius Snail, 20 hermit crabs, 1 peppermint shrimp, 1 cleaner shrimp, 1 sand sifting Star fish, 2 Bumble bee snails, 2 emerald crabs, 3 Banded Trochus Snails. I have a large protein Skimmer, I have a refugium and I dose nopox. I feed heavy because your suppose to have some Phosphates and some Nitrates but I have 0 nitrates and 0 phosphates ‍♂. Is your tank going to be a fish only tank?
 

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Zionas

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That Japanese Velvet is a beautiful one for sure. As for what my tank is going to be, it’s going to be with soft corals only. I’m going to stick with some easy-to-keep species of soft corals until I get a bigger tank and I have more experience and money for some other coral types.

I definitely want to give all my fish a well-balanced diet. Would seafood from the market (clams, mussels, shrimp, small fish) work? What about live foods? That’s a bummer for me.

I’m asking about live foods because I messaged Paul B and he said he only feeds his fish frozen or live foods, no dry foods and no flakes or pellets. He says it’s one of the tips to keep fish healthy and long-lived.
 

Hercaluis

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That Japanese Velvet is a beautiful one for sure. As for what my tank is going to be, it’s going to be with soft corals only. I’m going to stick with some easy-to-keep species of soft corals until I get a bigger tank and I have more experience and money for some other coral types.

I definitely want to give all my fish a well-balanced diet. Would seafood from the market (clams, mussels, shrimp, small fish) work? What about live foods? That’s a bummer for me.

I’m asking about live foods because I messaged Paul B and he said he only feeds his fish frozen or live foods, no dry foods and no flakes or pellets. He says it’s one of the tips to keep fish healthy and long-lived.
The Only live food I have ever fed was plankton and I would not recommend it because too many sponges and feather dusters appear. I have fed my fish flakes only for well over a year and they are healthy and strong. I do have copepods in my tank for my mandarin goby. I would not recommend any of the store food you mention unless you have a predator tank.lol.
 
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jsvand5

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Try to get a two of each of whatever types of Chrysiptera’s you decide on. That helps with aggression towards other fish. They spend most of their time worrying about each other and don’t seem to mess with other fish. I like ordering they captive bred Azures. They come in nice and small and they only cost a few dollars more than wild caught ones.
 
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Zionas

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I’d get captive bred everything if I could, but unfortunately in Asia captive bred fish are usually just clownfish. If I get a pair of Azures or even the Talbot’s, I’ll be introducing them at the same time, but they’ll likely be the same size as my clownfish that I plan to buy small (3-4 cm). Wouldn’t my Clownfish pair and the damsels fight?
 

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I have 6 damsels and a BG Chromis in my 4 foot long 75 gallon tank. I have a yellow tail, a blue, and azure damsel that seem to just hang out together and cause no troubles. I have a tablot damsel that hangs on the other side of tank, again, no problems. My 3 strip damsel is a bit of punk now and then but my chromis seems to keep him in line. A couple months ago I added a jewel damsel and I have read they can be a terror but so far no troubles, probably because it is the newest fish and has been put in his place right from the start.
 
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Zionas

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How’s the Chromis? I’ve always wanted to try that fish but its susceptibility to uronema puts me off.
 

saf1

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You shouldn't catch flack for anything here if truth be told. If you want a fish herbivior you have options even with tangs. Smaller tangs like the Kole and Tomini come to mind. If you want to stay away from those in a 100 gallon you could go to something like a lawnmower blenny.

Damsels you want to stay in the Chrysiptera family. So Azures, Talbots, Tracy's, etc. As a few stated any fish can become aggressive if the tank isn't set up properly. Damsels need a lot of nooks, crannies, and caves to hole up in. They will carve out there space and chase some away that try and take it. So a mature tank with healthy coral growth is best when keeping lots of damsels. At least in my opinion. @ca1ore as a metric ton of Damsels in his 450 and it isn't really the size that lets him pull it off. I mean it doesn't hurt, right? But if you look at his tank and how the corals / rock is laid out they offer room to break up the chase, hiding spots, and sleeping quarters.

Chromis - start with 10 end up with 1 or 2 if you are lucky. I'm not a fan of them but that is a personal preference and opinion of mine.
 
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Zionas

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@saf1 Why are you not a fan of Chromis? Is it because of uronema?

I’m thinking of either a pair of Azures or Talbot’s. Would that work well with the other fish I’ve listed? Should they go in before or after my dwarf angel?

As for Chromis, I only intend to keep 1 should I decide to get one.
 

saf1

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@saf1 Why are you not a fan of Chromis? Is it because of uronema?
@Zionas yes. That is one aspect or issue for sure. Probably more important is that every time I've tried to keep them I'd start out with about 15 and end up with 1 or 2 remaining. It seems they always gang up on the weakest or smallest one. Once that fella is gone they find the next and repeat the process until only 1 or 2 is left standing. So I've just written them off ever since.

Too bad because they are a fish that seems to do well in the upper water column.
 
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Zionas

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I think I’m going to avoid the Chromis and just stick with a pair of Azures or Talbot’s. I was not able to find the other species: Rolland’s, Springer’s, Starcki’s. Yellowtail Blue from what I’ve read are a bit more aggressive than Roland’s or the Azure, though I could be wrong.

I’ll only be keeping a pair of Talbot’s or Azures but I’m worried they’ll fight with the clowns and other fish. Maybe even 3 fish would be better than 2 or would that be too many?
 

saf1

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Note Starcki's are a bit more expensive. Well, a lot more expensive :). Similar to the Canary Deep Water Damsel. A very pretty damsel. Well, teh Starcki is 80 - 130 bucks vs the 200+ the Canary demand. But both are, well, worth it.

I would go with 3 to 5. I had a trio of Azures for the longest time in my 40 breeder. Looking back I would have went with 5. A lot depends on how mature the tank is and aquascape. You really need to visualize their own areas if you will and go from there. Especially if you they pair up.

I'm not an expert but overall I like the odds with even numbers.
 
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