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Old 08/14/2010, 03:20 PM   #1
av8
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Happy 20th Birthday Marilyn

Happy 20th Birthday Marilyn!

Introduction: I’m writing Marilyn’s life story as I believe she deserves some recognition, and a birthday is the best time to do so. That she survived all my mistakes and careless acts over the course of 20 years is, at least to me, quite an accomplishment.

I believe Marilyn (formerly Marlin) is an Ocellaris Clownfish. I acquired Marlin, and another equally sized juvenile clown, when my son was born in September 1990. It is likely they were 6 months old. Marlin did not get his name until several years later, when my kids wanted to name him Nemo, as in the Disney movie. I insisted upon the name Marlin, after Nemo’s father.

Marlin’s first home was an 18 tall tank. In those days I would not refer to it as a “reef” tank, just some rock and dead coral, with a helping of Caulerpa. In a short period of time both clowns exhibited a parasite. I removed them from the 18 gallon tank, treated them with copper and hoped for the best. Marlin survived the ordeal. I returned him to the 18 gallon tank where he lived for most of the 1990’s.

In 1999 my divorce saw Marlin move to a new home in an established 10 gallon mini reef tank. It had a “live rock” which had a small hard coral head growing when I first obtained it. There is a very small clam on that rock which I believe is still alive today. Marlin lived in that tank for a few more years.

In 2002 I left a friend in charge of feeding Marlin while I went diving on the Palancar reef near Cozumel. It turns out I left him the wrong door key. Marlin went 14 days without being fed. Upon my return, he was skinny for sure, but back to normal in a few days.
Later that year I set up a 55 gallon reef tank. Marlin finally had room to move around, which he rarely uses!

I’m not sure what year I introduced a pink tip bubble anemone, but after a few months Marlin moved in. Interestingly enough, I currently have 8 bubble anemones, and have sold off 8 more, all descended from that one.
In 2004 I introduced two juvenile Ocellaris Clowns to Marlins’ tank. At first the three schooled and it was a lot of fun to watch. After a few weeks, it became apparent that Marlin paired with one of the two juveniles, and they believed “three’s a crowd.” They started hitting on the other juvi, so I removed him to a different tank. Some time following this Marlin disappeared into the rock structure, and would not come out even to feed. I could see him back in his cave, so I knew he was alive. After about 10 days he made a brief appearance in the open and ate something. The only physical change I could see was shortly after he emerged from his rock cave. There was a tiny white piece of skin (?) aft of the pelvic fin, hanging loosely. It looked like a piece of the skin of a pea. I believe it was gone within a day or two. Slowly (s)he returned to his/her former bubble hang-out and habits. A year or two later someone offered that I had witnessed a sex change, as these fish are sequential hermaphrodites. We renamed him Marilyn.

All is well in the tank these days, but Marilyn is slowing down. She is not as aggressive and does not attack me with vigor during tank cleaning as in the old days. She spends more time hiding in her bubbles, and does not wander the immediate vicinity as much. Appetite is still very good. She is enjoying her retirement years. Happy 20th birthday Marilyn!


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Old 08/14/2010, 03:55 PM   #2
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Very cool!!! I hope she lives another 20 years.


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Old 08/14/2010, 03:57 PM   #3
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Wow I love this story! I hope my little maroon clown which right now is nemo lol but will of course turn to nema lol makes it that long ... Congrats! and HAPPY B-DAY MARILYN!


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Old 08/14/2010, 03:59 PM   #4
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Thats great!Lets hope to see him live 5 years more!


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Old 08/14/2010, 05:59 PM   #5
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Good story, thank you for sharing!


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Old 08/14/2010, 06:13 PM   #6
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Cool story. They truely are pets for the entire family. Does anyone know how long these guys live in captivity ??


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Old 08/14/2010, 06:55 PM   #7
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that's a really cool story!!


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Old 08/14/2010, 07:50 PM   #8
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When I asked the question here on RC the response I received was 23 years. I have reread my book Clownfishes by Joyce D. Wilkerson (an excellent book on our friends) and no lifespan was given. If anyone has experience in this area, I'd love to know.
Marilyn says tanks to all for the Birthday greetings!


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Old 08/17/2010, 01:43 PM   #9
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lol! great story! Thats crazy youve had Marilyn for so long!


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Old 08/17/2010, 01:54 PM   #10
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That's great. Puts it into perspective how important of a decision purchasing just a "normal" clownfish is. Thanks for the story.


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Old 08/17/2010, 02:09 PM   #11
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That is great. She looks pretty mean in her old age.


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Old 08/17/2010, 02:18 PM   #12
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Very cool! From what I understood, after being a single clown for a certain period of time the clown will become a female.

From this article - http://www.fishlore.com/Wiki-ClownFish.htm

"In typical home aquaria, a juvenile only several months old can make the change from juvenile to male to female in as little as a month"


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Old 06/21/2012, 02:03 AM   #13
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I am resurecting this post! I was looking to see how long clownfish lifespan is. It is very interesting this one has lived so long! It' s a good reminder that not only are we "hobbyists" but responsible for the lives we choose to put in our care.


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Old 06/21/2012, 10:22 AM   #14
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Long live Mairlyn!


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Old 06/22/2012, 09:40 AM   #15
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yeah, 2 years later, I would be interested to know if this critter is still kicking.


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Old 06/22/2012, 10:15 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Angel85 View Post
I am resurecting this post! I was looking to see how long clownfish lifespan is. It is very interesting this one has lived so long! It' s a good reminder that not only are we "hobbyists" but responsible for the lives we choose to put in our care.
There is/was a local maroon that was said to be 30+ years old. It was said to be one of the original breeders for C-Quest. I can't be sure how accurate the claim is because C-Quest is only 24 years old, and they started with ocellaris/percula. The fish did look very very old though. The last time I was in the shop where it lived, the fish wasn't there. The owner wasn't there either, so I couldn't check on the status of the fish.

Just FYI. Claim of 33 year old percula.
http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j...7Wl5qvuRWUXRbw


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Old 06/22/2012, 02:04 PM   #17
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Still "kicking" ... no. Having a bubbling good time, you bet!

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yeah, 2 years later, I would be interested to know if this critter is still kicking.
Marilyn is alive and well. I believe her to be 22 years old now.


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Old 06/22/2012, 03:29 PM   #18
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Great job in taking care of her all these years. She's family!! She looks great from her picture. Hope you get many more years of her to enjoy!


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Old 06/22/2012, 05:33 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elegance coral View Post
There is/was a local maroon that was said to be 30+ years old. It was said to be one of the original breeders for C-Quest. I can't be sure how accurate the claim is because C-Quest is only 24 years old, and they started with ocellaris/percula. The fish did look very very old though. The last time I was in the shop where it lived, the fish wasn't there. The owner wasn't there either, so I couldn't check on the status of the fish.

Just FYI. Claim of 33 year old percula.
http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j...7Wl5qvuRWUXRbw
yep, I know the shop you mean. I wondered the same thing as the last time I was in there the big maroon wasn't in the tank and I forgot to ask before I left.


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Old 06/22/2012, 07:50 PM   #20
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Marilyn's debut on YouTube:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sqzqd...ature=youtu.be


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Old 06/22/2012, 09:23 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elegance coral View Post
There is/was a local maroon that was said to be 30+ years old. It was said to be one of the original breeders for C-Quest. I can't be sure how accurate the claim is because C-Quest is only 24 years old, and they started with ocellaris/percula. The fish did look very very old though. The last time I was in the shop where it lived, the fish wasn't there. The owner wasn't there either, so I couldn't check on the status of the fish.

Just FYI. Claim of 33 year old percula.
http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j...7Wl5qvuRWUXRbw
EC, if you are talking about the maroon pair at Sea in the City, then the female died a year or so ago.


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Old 06/22/2012, 09:46 PM   #22
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I like the story of marilyn,Hope to have mine that long,they were just 3 months old when I got them and this year they will 6 years old.


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Old 06/23/2012, 12:00 AM   #23
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Talking

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Marilyn is alive and well. I believe her to be 22 years old now.

That is awesome that she is still alive and that you are still on the forum to update us on her! What is your advice to keeping her living so long? Have you had any other fish live as long or close to Marilyn's age?


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Old 06/23/2012, 12:04 AM   #24
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EC, if you are talking about the maroon pair at Sea in the City, then the female died a year or so ago.
Aww, thats too bad! But she had a good life it sounds like..


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Old 06/23/2012, 08:30 AM   #25
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Quote:
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yep, I know the shop you mean. I wondered the same thing as the last time I was in there the big maroon wasn't in the tank and I forgot to ask before I left.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Postal View Post
EC, if you are talking about the maroon pair at Sea in the City, then the female died a year or so ago.
Yep...... That's the fish I was talking about.
Thanks for the update on her status. Even though it's not what I was hoping for.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Angel85 View Post
Aww, thats too bad! But she had a good life it sounds like..
I'm sure she had a GREAT life while she was in that shop. All the animals are very well cared for. Especially her.


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