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Tankmates for Rays and Benthic Sharks

Posted 12/26/2011 at 08:09 PM by alprazo
Updated 12/26/2011 at 10:10 PM by alprazo

Tankmates - adding a shark to an existing tank stocked with fish or adding fish is one of the most frequently asked shark related questions in the forums.

Simply put, other sharks or rays depending on the tank size. Even this adds risk. I watched my wobbegong crush an epaulette twice its length and know of a horn shark that was blinded by an epaulette with a habit of sucking eyes out.

Fish considered safe "with caution": Groupers, squirrel fish, grunts, goatfish, snappers, spade, batfish, and jacks usually will leave the sharks alone. Though I have lost lookdowns to an epaulette and lost a shark to a grouper.

Fish to avoid: Angelfish, trigger fish, filefish, pufferfish, moorish idols, boxfish, and cowfish. My first Atlantic ray was killed by file fish. I lost another to a blue angel. Of course there are always exceptions and I use a 6 inch moorish idol to keep my quarantine tank running. It has never been a problem.

Wildcard fish - Damsels, cardinal fish, chromis and all fish of a size that could be swallowed - may be food. Wrasses that bed down, often fall prey too. Some others that are questionable: Tangs, hogs, broomtail wrasses, lions, scorpions, and rabbits.

I have recently describe such an issue in my ongoing wobbegong post.


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