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Sick Clown Fish :(
hey guys i could use your help before things get worse. i just started up a new saltwater tank about 4 weeks ago. its a FOWLR and so far its only occupaints are two Ocellaris clowns. the smaller of the two seems fine and is following the other one. the bigger one looks like he is having a hard time to swim downard and spends all his time in the first 5-7 inchs of water. there is no visible signs of damage to him and i would like to fix this if there is a medication i could give him.
Clownfish: Facts, Discussion Forum, and Encyclopedia Article
Clowns have a weird swim patter anyways. If he continues eating and swimming about, and not laying at the surface, I'd leave him be.
This is a very difficult question, especially without more details. My first instinct is that your 2 subadult Clownfish are engaged in behavior to determine who is going to be the female and who is going to be the male. The submission fish is displaying this trait by bobbing up and down near the surface. My fear is that it will jump out of tank, trying to escape the PERCEIVED or real threat coming from the dominant soon to be female.
What size tank are we talking about here? It can be very difficult to keep a pair of Clownfish in a tank under 29 gallons, if they don't quickly take to one another. You may end up having to remove the submissive fish.
Another possibility is that you have a swim bladder issue. Many fish suffer damage to their swim bladder when being collected. Hopefully you took great care in selecting your fish, only purchasing after a good time of observation at the LFS &/or multiple visits. Also, hopefully you are using a quarantine tank to observe. If both of these are true, then you can likely rule out health issues, and assume you are witnessing the behavior I described above.
So, how long have you been at this side of the hobby? Any future plans for the tank?
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