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6 Line Wrasse Agressive


mattbaar

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I've had my IM 30l setup for about 3 months now. I started with 2 clownfish and my girlfriend picked a 6 line wrasse as our third fish. He has had no trouble with the clownfish or the 2 peppermint shrimp and cleaner shrimp in there. No aggression from anyone towards anything. Yesterday, I went to pick up a yellow watchman goby hoping to pair him with a pistol shrimp later on. The wrasse has been constantly harassing the goby and forced him to hide in a small crevice near the overflow. I have tried placing the goby in different parts of the tank and digging little holes for him to try and hide in but nothing has worked. I went and bought a small breeder box to put the wrasse in but I couldn't catch him so the goby is in there for now ( way easier to catch). 

 

Should I try and catch the wrasse and put him in the breeder in hopes that his aggression goes down or leave the goby in there? 

I really would like to get another fish or two and I'm worried about the wrasse doing the same thing with any other new additions.

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4 minutes ago, mattbaar said:

I've had my IM 30l setup for about 3 months now. I started with 2 clownfish and my girlfriend picked a 6 line wrasse as our third fish. He has had no trouble with the clownfish or the 2 peppermint shrimp and cleaner shrimp in there. No aggression from anyone towards anything. Yesterday, I went to pick up a yellow watchman goby hoping to pair him with a pistol shrimp later on. The wrasse has been constantly harassing the goby and forced him to hide in a small crevice near the overflow. I have tried placing the goby in different parts of the tank and digging little holes for him to try and hide in but nothing has worked. I went and bought a small breeder box to put the wrasse in but I couldn't catch him so the goby is in there for now ( way easier to catch). 

 

Should I try and catch the wrasse and put him in the breeder in hopes that his aggression goes down or leave the goby in there? 

I really would like to get another fish or two and I'm worried about the wrasse doing the same thing with any other new additions.

Six lines are very aggressive fish. It’s attitude is unlikely to change unfortunately. 

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23 minutes ago, mattbaar said:

I've had my IM 30l setup for about 3 months now. I started with 2 clownfish and my girlfriend picked a 6 line wrasse as our third fish. He has had no trouble with the clownfish or the 2 peppermint shrimp and cleaner shrimp in there. No aggression from anyone towards anything. Yesterday, I went to pick up a yellow watchman goby hoping to pair him with a pistol shrimp later on. The wrasse has been constantly harassing the goby and forced him to hide in a small crevice near the overflow. I have tried placing the goby in different parts of the tank and digging little holes for him to try and hide in but nothing has worked. I went and bought a small breeder box to put the wrasse in but I couldn't catch him so the goby is in there for now ( way easier to catch). 

 

Should I try and catch the wrasse and put him in the breeder in hopes that his aggression goes down or leave the goby in there? 

I really would like to get another fish or two and I'm worried about the wrasse doing the same thing with any other new additions.

Honestly, both the clowns and sixline can be bullies, especially in small tanks. If they clowns are still small, and not yet bullies, they will be in a few years. I'd only put fish in with them that can handle themselves with bully fish.

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A Little Blue

Introducing fish in order of aggression, from least (1st) to most aggressive (last) helps. 

But some fish are just jerks. Both Clownfish or Sixline are hit or miss. Some have no issues with either, others are not so lucky. Like people, fish do have personalities. And smaller tanks amplify those personalities to certain degree due to limited space that intertwine territories that some fish will fearlessly try to protect. 

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burtbollinger

theres very few fish more agressive than a sixline.  

 

I know a few guys who have had them be model citizens only to flip like a switch and become terrors.

 

the behavior will likely continue until he is removed

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30 litres is far too small for any of those fish. clowns need 40 litres and sixlines need at least 115 litres. no wonder your having aggression issues. they each want theyre own territories and there just isnt enough room, so they will fight for it.

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1 hour ago, BlennyBoi said:

30 litres is far too small for any of those fish. clowns need 40 litres and sixlines need at least 115 litres. no wonder your having aggression issues. they each want theyre own territories and there just isnt enough room, so they will fight for it.

He means 30l as in IM Nuvo 30 long.  It's a 30 gallon tank...3 feet long.

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As others have mentioned, order of aggression can help.  I have the same tank and put my two clowns in first.  I later added the six line.  Tried a tailspot blenny last and it didn't work out.  The six line was going after it.  I removed the blenny and it now resides happily in my wife's tank.  Some say you can try rearranging your aquascape to break up established territory.  I'm content with my 3 fish and the six line has probably helped my tank more than the blenny would have....in regards to pest management.

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2 hours ago, DreC80 said:

As others have mentioned, order of aggression can help.  I have the same tank and put my two clowns in first.  I later added the six line.  Tried a tailspot blenny last and it didn't work out.  The six line was going after it.  I removed the blenny and it now resides happily in my wife's tank.  Some say you can try rearranging your aquascape to break up established territory.  I'm content with my 3 fish and the six line has probably helped my tank more than the blenny would have....in regards to pest management.

 

I like the wrasse a lot but it being my first tank, I really wanted to try out some other fish as well. I'm also worried that when the wrasse grows up he will become more agressive. Looks like I'm just going to have to try and catch him. I don't think rearranging the aqucascape would work. He patrols the tank all day looking for things that are out of place.

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16 minutes ago, mattbaar said:

 

I like the wrasse a lot but it being my first tank, I really wanted to try out some other fish as well. I'm also worried that when the wrasse grows up he will become more agressive. Looks like I'm just going to have to try and catch him. I don't think rearranging the aqucascape would work. He patrols the tank all day looking for things that are out of place.

If you've already got clowns in there - I would probably just leave the sixline and make it a semi-aggressive tank since you've already got 3 aggressive fish in there and you don't have room for many more. There are tons of fish that will do fine in a tank with a sixline and can be kept in a 30 gallon tank. Things like a dottyback, damsel, or a small hawkfish would all do fine with a sixline or other agressive fish.

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51 minutes ago, jservedio said:

If you've already got clowns in there - I would probably just leave the sixline and make it a semi-aggressive tank since you've already got 3 aggressive fish in there and you don't have room for many more. There are tons of fish that will do fine in a tank with a sixline and can be kept in a 30 gallon tank. Things like a dottyback, damsel, or a small hawkfish would all do fine with a sixline or other agressive fish.

Good call. That would keep my girlfriend happy as she is the one who chose the wrasse. Damsels are okay on their own? 

 

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49 minutes ago, mattbaar said:

Good call. That would keep my girlfriend happy as she is the one who chose the wrasse. Damsels are okay on their own? 

 

I'm pretty sure a damsel would be just fine in a pothole with a light drizzle. When man is long gone from this earth, in the company of cockroaches, the damselfish will live on.

 

A damsel may fight with your clowns for territory, or they might get along. If you've got lots of hiding spots - you've got a pretty long tank so who knows. If they are all smaller fish you've got a much better chance.

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In my 22g I had two clowns...damsel...Gramma (had dotty back but ate shrimp)....and a sixline.

 

The clowns have been with me many years now and the female is the meanest thing in the tank. When clowns spawn they turn crazy and some may even pick up fish and toss it into the anenome. 

 

My sixline was added last and the clown keeps it in check.

 

It may be difficult to even add damsels after a sixline...they can be murderous to even semi aggressive fish.

 

When I swapped the dotty back for a Gramma...I took the rock out...caught the sixline... Put it in a QT tank for a few weeks while the Gramma settled in. Then I added the sixline back without issue.

 

I actually just sold the sixline and getting a Coris wrasse instead. My sixline was still not causing problems but they are a fish where you wake up one day and find it murdered your other fish randomly after being fine for years.

 

 

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Just an update: I got my goby to find a little cave and he's happy there now. It's really cute watching him poke out to grab some food. The wrasse stopped to take a peek a few times but since last night he has left him alone and doesn't seem to mind the goby being there. Now to get a pistol shrimp...

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On 3/18/2019 at 3:41 PM, WV Reefer said:

Six lines are very aggressive fish. It’s attitude is unlikely to change unfortunately. 

Yup, know a guy elsewhere that does various saltwater tank troubleshooting issues for other people.  The fish that he has been called on to remove the most?  The 6 line wrasse.  

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Just now, Jesterrace said:

Yup, know a guy elsewhere that does various saltwater tank troubleshooting issues for other people.  The fish that he has been called on to remove the most?  The 6 line wrasse.  

It’s such a shame because they are a really pretty fish. I’m lucky that mine is in with other aggressive fish so it’s not an issue. 

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8 minutes ago, WV Reefer said:

It’s such a shame because they are a really pretty fish. I’m lucky that mine is in with other aggressive fish so it’s not an issue. 

 

Agreed.  They need to be kept with fish that give as good as they get or used for eye candy and pest removal services in a small dedicated frag tank where they are the only fish. 

 

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8 hours ago, WV Reefer said:

It’s such a shame because they are a really pretty fish. I’m lucky that mine is in with other aggressive fish so it’s not an issue. 

yeah, mine lives with a clarkii. they fight quite a bit but its all bluffing and neither actually gets hurt. kinda freaked out the first time it happened. i had just put in the clarkii and the sixline had been established for nearly 4 months. they started fighting and the clarkii actually won.

On 3/19/2019 at 8:25 PM, DreC80 said:

He means 30l as in IM Nuvo 30 long.  It's a 30 gallon tank...3 feet long.

oh sorry i thought 30l meant 30 litres my bad. yeah 30 gallons is great

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  • 4 years later...
IHaveADegreeInMarineBioBut
On 3/19/2019 at 8:27 PM, Tamberav said:

In my 22g I had two clowns...damsel...Gramma (had dotty back but ate shrimp)....and a sixline.

 

The clowns have been with me many years now and the female is the meanest thing in the tank. When clowns spawn they turn crazy and some may even pick up fish and toss it into the anenome. 

 

My sixline was added last and the clown keeps it in check.

 

It may be difficult to even add damsels after a sixline...they can be murderous to even semi aggressive fish.

 

When I swapped the dotty back for a Gramma...I took the rock out...caught the sixline... Put it in a QT tank for a few weeks while the Gramma settled in. Then I added the sixline back without issue.

 

I actually just sold the sixline and getting a Coris wrasse instead. My sixline was still not causing problems but they are a fish where you wake up one day and find it murdered your other fish randomly after being fine for years.

 

 

Don't mean to dig up an old thread.. but this is the exact stocking (clowns, gramma, wrasse) I'm thinking right now! I believe the gramma/wrasse will be fine for the same reasons you said as my clowns are also aggressive. Getting a lot of backlash about it though, understandably. Just great to hear someone had the same idea as me. 

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40 minutes ago, IHaveADegreeInMarineBioBut said:

Don't mean to dig up an old thread.. but this is the exact stocking (clowns, gramma, wrasse) I'm thinking right now! I believe the gramma/wrasse will be fine for the same reasons you said as my clowns are also aggressive. Getting a lot of backlash about it though, understandably. Just great to hear someone had the same idea as me. 

It totally depends on how big the tank is, the order you add them, where in your tank the clowns and wrasse set up, and the temperament of your wrasse. If you are getting backlash, how big is the tank and where in the tank are  your clowns and gramma living? If there is swimming room that doesn't overlap with the gramma and clowns territories, it'll probably be totally fine so long as you add nothing else and don't re-scape. If the only swimming room in the tank for the wrasse overlaps with the territory of the clowns or gramma, there very likely to be a lot of trouble.

 

Trying to put these 3 types of fish together in a 20g is probably not going to go very well. In a bigger tank? It'll probably be fine. For example, my clowns and gramma actually all live together in a single cave in the front corner of my tank and they are never further than 6" apart from each other (even when the clowns are spawning). This means the entire rest of my 50g tank is free open swimming room with no LoS, so it would work. In my old 20g, if I put them all in there together, it'd have been a bloodbath.

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IHaveADegreeInMarineBioBut
31 minutes ago, jservedio said:

It totally depends on how big the tank is, the order you add them, where in your tank the clowns and wrasse set up, and the temperament of your wrasse. If you are getting backlash, how big is the tank and where in the tank are  your clowns and gramma living? If there is swimming room that doesn't overlap with the gramma and clowns territories, it'll probably be totally fine so long as you add nothing else and don't re-scape. If the only swimming room in the tank for the wrasse overlaps with the territory of the clowns or gramma, there very likely to be a lot of trouble.

 

Trying to put these 3 types of fish together in a 20g is probably not going to go very well. In a bigger tank? It'll probably be fine. For example, my clowns and gramma actually all live together in a single cave in the front corner of my tank and they are never further than 6" apart from each other (even when the clowns are spawning). This means the entire rest of my 50g tank is free open swimming room with no LoS, so it would work. In my old 20g, if I put them all in there together, it'd have been a bloodbath.

A 20 gallon long. My clowns live in the back left corner of the tank between the heater and the wall at the water line. They come maybe to the back middle during feeding times, but the male defends that territory well from my hand. 

I have two rock islands that I think could further help break up territories. If things don't work out, I do have a spare tank I can set up until I'm able to rehome the fish.
I don't have the other fish yet.

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48 minutes ago, IHaveADegreeInMarineBioBut said:

A 20 gallon long. My clowns live in the back left corner of the tank between the heater and the wall at the water line. They come maybe to the back middle during feeding times, but the male defends that territory well from my hand. 

I have two rock islands that I think could further help break up territories. If things don't work out, I do have a spare tank I can set up until I'm able to rehome the fish.
I don't have the other fish yet.

Adding the sixline before the gramma is much, much more risky. Just like the clowns, the gramma is going to have it's territory where it just hangs out all day - they don't really swim around in open water much. The sixline needs to have swimming room that doesn't go through either of their territories. Adding a tiny sixline after your clowns and gramma are much bigger gives you the best shot. Settled clowns and grammas are much less likely to chase a tiny fish as long as it gives them room and the sixline is less likely to be aggressive if it'd get smacked around for trying.

 

Maybe you'll get lucky like I did with mine - my gramma and clowns actually share territory - the three of them share the same cave in the front corner of the tank and are never more than 6 inches apart except for feeding. They even tolerate the gramma when they are spawning, strangely enough and they've straight up murdered fish (including a sixline) over the years when they weren't actively spawning! That leaves a good 75% of the tank open for swimming without line of sight, so I'd orobably have no issues.

 

If you have something similar to that, where the gramma and clowns are all basically together or the territory it picks leaves a bunch of swimming room - you've got a good shot of it going fine. But, if the gramma is on the other side of the tank from the clowns and the sixline has to swim through it's territory and/or the clowns territory just to move around - it's going to be a fight eventually. The sixline needs swimming room that doesn't overlap with either of their territories. If they don't have that, the gramma and wrasse are going to be constantly going at each other and the clowns may even get involved, which is never good.

 

That said, even if it has swimming room, you may just end up with fish who are super aggressive and it's the thunderdome.

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IHaveADegreeInMarineBioBut
Just now, jservedio said:

Adding the sixline before the gramma is much, much more risky. Just like the clowns, the gramma is going to have it's territory where it just hangs out all day - they don't really swim around in open water much. The sixline needs to have swimming room that doesn't go through either of their territories. Adding a tiny sixline after your clowns and gramma are much bigger gives you the best shot. Settled clowns and grammas are much less likely to chase a tiny fish as long as it gives them room and the sixline is less likely to be aggressive if it'd get smacked around for trying.

 

Maybe you'll get lucky like I did with mine - my gramma and clowns actually share territory - the three of them share the same cave in the front corner of the tank and are never more than 6 inches apart except for feeding. They even tolerate the gramma when they are spawning, strangely enough and they've straight up murdered fish (including a sixline) over the years when they weren't actively spawning! That leaves a good 75% of the tank open for swimming without line of sight, so I'd orobably have no issues.

 

If you have something similar to that, where the gramma and clowns are all basically together or the territory it picks leaves a bunch of swimming room - you've got a good shot of it going fine. But, if the gramma is on the other side of the tank from the clowns and the sixline has to swim through it's territory and/or the clowns territory just to move around - it's going to be a fight eventually. The sixline needs swimming room that doesn't overlap with either of their territories. If they don't have that, the gramma and wrasse are going to be constantly going at each other and the clowns may even get involved, which is never good.

 

That said, even if it has swimming room, you may just end up with fish who are super aggressive and it's the thunderdome.

This is exactly my train of thought. I've had a sixline before (early 2010s) and it was chill. So when I came back seriously to the hobby before covid, I was kind of confused as to why they got so much hate. I do genuinely believe it's a 50/50 chance if you get a 'good' one or not. And I do understand they get more aggressive as they age and that one fish doesn't represent them all. Never had a gramma. 

Will definitely try a gramma for now as I've been wanting a fish that swims out in the front for a few years now... love clowns but why they gotta do that haha

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