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Fish Removal

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  1. #1

    Default Fish Removal

    What is the best way to catch a fish in a reef tank. I bought an Eibli Angel from my local fish store which they said would be reef safe but it isn't. The darn thing is nipping at my green brain coral. I need to get it out ASAP. I've tried the nets but ther isn't much room. If I moved as many of my corals off the rocks and took them out of the tank for a few minutes would this screw up my tank. Please help!

  2. #2
    lReef lKeeper - Reefkeeper CR Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    louisville ky
    First Name


    i had to put ALL of my corals and 300lbs. of LR in buckets and rubbermaids to get a clown tang out of my reef. you could try a fish trap, but it may or may not work.
    i think your only SURE FIRE way is to remove EVERYTHING from the tank, catch him, and put it all back ... in the same night (or day). i considered it a good time to reaquascape my tank. it took 5 hours to get it right, but now it looks better than it did before.

  3. #3
    dakar - Reefkeeper CR Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    First Name


    Unless you feel lucky enough to try a fishing pole (yes, it HAS been done and photodocumented, by one of our illustrious Mods no less) getting lucky using multiple nets and multiple hands to assist if possible, baiting it to your nets, tryign to snag him while sleeping, then when all else fails tearing apart your reef to get him out is about the only real option.. At best... it sucks rocks.

    After the first time of tearing it down to get a fish out, it instills the ability to rationalize between the ah now that's pretty and the 'what if this or that fish doesn't work out' thought patterns when browsing for new animals to add to your reef
    Every electronic device is manufactured with smoke stored deep inside... only a true genius can find a way to set it free.

  4. #4


    I've done all of the above in order to catch fishes out of my tank.

    The first time I had to remove a trigger and I ended up taking all - I mean all my coral and rocks out in order to net him out with a couple of nets.

    The second time, I had to fish out an aggressive, (by then) oversized maroon clown (darn thing grew and grew and grew), I used a piece of prawn on a very small hook to fish him out. Had to be careful as a number of fishes were rushing for the bait/hook. Finally got him out.

    The last time - last month, I had to remove my angels - an emperor and a blue face. (I know, it wasn't wise to put these fishes in my tank with corals). Found a small hamster cage (cage with plastic bottom and a door on the top), rigged a fish line to enable me to pull the door shut when needed. Left the cage in the tank and placed some food on the floor of the cage. Caught the emperor in seconds (not shy fish) and the blue face (very shy but hungry...) after one day !

    I am very careful in choosing the fishes I put in the tank now.... too much work trying to catch them out of my fish/reef tank.

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