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Discussion Starter #1
I really want one of these fish, and do have lots of copepods etc in my live rock. I was shocked when I saw one on CL for $30 and tried to buy it. Long story, the person was a flake, and I ended up not getting it. Anyways, the chance of seeing one on CL again will be rare. I can order one at the LFS that is wild caught for $23 or get one that is captive bred for $75. I would of course rather pay $23, but I feel really guilty getting a wild caught one. I hear they are pretty over fished. What are others thoughts about this? I need help making a decision on this one. Thanks.
 

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I really want one of these fish, and do have lots of copepods etc in my live rock. I was shocked when I saw one on CL for $30 and tried to buy it. Long story, the person was a flake, and I ended up not getting it. Anyways, the chance of seeing one on CL again will be rare. I can order one at the LFS that is wild caught for $23 or get one that is captive bred for $75. I would of course rather pay $23, but I feel really guilty getting a wild caught one. I hear they are pretty over fished. What are others thoughts about this? I need help making a decision on this one. Thanks.
I wasn't even aware that they captive bred these. I read articles that it was someday going to be possible, but never have seen them available.

Is there any other LFS that can offer a captive bred? The nice thing about having a captive bred is that I assume they can get them to eat prepared food, so they will have a much higher chance of living (if you consider that it may take three tries to have one live, maybe buying one @75 isn't that bad of a deal). And you will probably see a captive bred more. I had a pod eater in my 150, and I never saw him. He hid in the back and chowed on pods all day, lol!

What size is this tank again? How mature is it?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I wasn't even aware that they captive bred these. I read articles that it was someday going to be possible, but never have seen them available.

Is there any other LFS that can offer a captive bred? The nice thing about having a captive bred is that I assume they can get them to eat prepared food, so they will have a much higher chance of living (if you consider that it may take three tries to have one live, maybe buying one @75 isn't that bad of a deal). And you will probably see a captive bred more. I had a pod eater in my 150, and I never saw him. He hid in the back and chowed on pods all day, lol!

What size is this tank again? How mature is it?
Good point for captive bred. Hmmm. From this LFS said they do have someone who breeds them.
 

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I had a Mandarin. Resilient fish if they eat. He survived in a 46, thrived in a 150. I thought I lost him until one night I was doing a top of when the lights changed and Voila! there he was in the sump! He must have jumped over the baffle, down the standpipe, and into the refugium! He was chowing on all the pods that nobody else could get to. It was one of the happiest days of my fishkeeping career...
 

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I had a Mandarin. Resilient fish if they eat. He survived in a 46, thrived in a 150. I thought I lost him until one night I was doing a top of when the lights changed and Voila! there he was in the sump! He must have jumped over the baffle, down the standpipe, and into the refugium! He was chowing on all the pods that nobody else could get to. It was one of the happiest days of my fishkeeping career...
Awww. They are so cute. How risky is it that they might not eat? Odds? 50/50? I hope better. I don't want one to die on me if I take him from the ocean.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
6 months. Lots of different pods, mysis shrimp I got LR rom est. tanks.
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Discussion Starter #10
What size (gallons) is it?
75 gallons with a 15 gallon sump. Did some "redecorating" and had some casualities :-( Had my rock with my purple monitpora fall and break the coral, so I re-glued the broken piece. Completely lost my frag of birds nest. I saw it fall and, stupid me, didn't put it in a bowl of water until I could set again. Tore up as much as I was willing to, and never found it. Such a bummer. Overall, I like the re-arranging I did, so I guess, there are is some positive to it all.
 

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i have looked at mandarins at the lfs so many times, my head hurt! they were priced at $25 and now i'm wondering if they are tank bred?? i've never heard of them being tank bred and if you look at the description at liveaquaria.com, their description of care level is "difficult".

i might be 100 years old by the time i have the nerve to get one of these but i SO want one!!

btw gwen, liveaquaria has mandarins for as little at $20. of course, there would be shipping costs but i have bought fish from them and had really good luck. their packaging is extreme and everything i've gotten has been super healthy!

if you do buy from the lfs, i would insist on seeing the fish eat a prepared food before i wrote the check. ;)
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thanks for the article. I had actually stumbled on that one myself. If they order me one, I will pick it up when it comes in. I'm not going to be able to see it eat. I would have to count on him eating off the live copepods in my tank. Ideally, perhaps one day he'd eat prepared foods, but the plan is for it to eat what I have in my tank. I was taking rock out yesterday, glueing some frags, and did see a mysis shrimp in the bucket, so I know now they are not just in my sump but in the tank, which is cool!

I'm going to California in 2 weeks for a long weekend. I'm going to likely order one, (wild caught, for $23), but will wait till I get back. I'll let you know how it does. I bet the lfs I would get the captive bred one from, orders it from FL, since it sounds like they are breeding them. I hate to be cheap, but I really don't want to spend $75-80 for one. Wild caught are probably heartier.

Online purchases are nice if you can go in with a couple other people, because shipping is more than the fish!
 

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Discussion Starter #15
My new Dragonette!

Picking up RO water from my "reef friend" and he said he saw a few of these at the reef store. Sure enough they had one left (some guy asked them to hold it and never returned, so he's mine!). I love the him! The picture is of him minutes after he was put in the water. After about 5 minutes, he fixated on a rock that he must have seen copepods. It was so cute watching him try to hunt and get a copepod inside holes in the rock. Healthy guy, and I'm sure he'll do well in my tank. I've already seen him this morning, though my lights are off. Very brave, confident fish after spending his last week in shipment etc. He had been at the LFS since Wednesday, and must have been very hungry! Such beautiful fish.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Just want to update all, that my Mandarian is doing great. Seems to find lots to eat and seems happy.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Is he taking frozen food, or just chowing on pods?
Just the pods I assume. I've not seen him eat frozen. He is nice a fat, and hangs out on the rocks or behind the rocks.
 
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