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Follow my Oceanic 144g half circle reef tanks progress.
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Faux Anemone

Posted 12/23/2011 at 09:23 PM by Aaarrrggg

Crikey has it really been 2 weeks?! A local reef club member and I have been working on the watercharge system this week... well, I mean he has been working on it and I've been bothering him. I need to take some more piccies, but I'll be back with a big update about that soon.

In the meantime I had fun with a little experiment...
I saw a thread a while back where someone asked if clowns might take a fake anemone as a host. Most of the responses came back "no," which got be wondering. I mean, if a clown will readily accept a powerhead host, then why not a rubber nem?

As my nano has just been sitting there with my clowns, I thought I'd give it a go. I ordered a big (9") "Penn Plax" anemone ornament from eBay and added it to the tank.

[IMG]http://i144.photobucket.com/albums/r161/TheAaarrrggg/fake-nem.jpg[/IMG]

TBH I didn't have a great deal of hope for it. Both clowns are captive bred and are happy to spend most of the day begging for food at the waterline. The B&Ws in my first tank took a couple of months to accept an actual RBTA; so at best I thought these guys might accept this fake one a few months down the line. You can imagine my astonishment less than a week later when I came downstairs to this...

[IMG]http://i144.photobucket.com/albums/r161/TheAaarrrggg/hosting-fake-nem.jpg[/IMG]

Please excuse the poor quality pic. As soon as she sees me she comes rushing up to the surface (she's such a brat!) I had to commando crawl across the floor with my phone to catch this!

A couple of days later she started sleeping in it:

[url]http://youtu.be/yPa-2ds4qRk[/url]

Guybrush (male domino) still sleeps in the corner, but I find him in there occasionally and I haven't actually seen her chasing him away so I think he's just getting used to it. I often find them both snuggled up in there in the morning.

The real test will be when I move them over to the 144g. I'm hoping that they'll recognize the nem in the new environment and continue to associate with it. In 5mths time when the tank is mature enough I can swap in a real RBTA and fingers crossed, they'll jump right in! I know it looks rather unsightly in the meantime, but I just see it as their "training wheels" until they can have the real thing to play in. It certainly looks more natural than having them begging at the surface all day long.
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