Not the best of days on the reef today.
At feeding time I noticed the Male Pintail wrasse was MIA. He was absolutely fine the previous day, eating more than his fair share of food as usual. Then today he was gone. This prompted a frantic searching of the tank both inside and out by the entire family. There was no sign of him in the tank so we got on our hands and knees with torches searching the entire room, under cupboards and behind the tank (even though I have a net top to the tank). The fish however was nowhere to be found, how can a fish as large as this vanish so completely in a small tank?
It was my son who finally solved the mystery, he spotted the very tip of the wrasse’s tail poking out from a hole in a rock hidden right at the back of a cave at the very bottom of the left hand rock pile. Possibly THE most inaccessibile area of the tank.
Now I was faced with an impossible decision, let the fish die (the tail was still twitching) or pull out all the rocks? My husband pointed out that even if I did remove the rocks complete with large corals, how was I going to actually get the fish out of the hole?
We decided to wait and see if he could miraculously extricate himself on his own. For hours I hovered nervously around the tank hoping for a miracle. It was heartbreaking watching the female Pintail waiting around/in the cave, clearly aware that her mate was in there somewhere. Kinda surprising considering how he likes to chase her sometimes.
I had pretty much given up hope when, late this afternoon, the stupid wrasse managed to wriggle all the way THROUGH the hole in the rock and emerge out the other side. I didn’t know that was possible, up till now the only critter to use this hole is the Pom Pom crab.
Sadly the fishie is now in a really poor shape. His dorsal fin is shredded, he has wounds on his face and many missing scales on his side. I don’t know if he will survive this ordeal or not but he was in good condition yesterday so I can only hope. He wouldn’t eat tonight however.
Keeping a reef tank is so relaxing... NOT!!
Hi, my name is Lisa and I live in Derby, UK. I am a self-confessed reefaholic!