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View Full Version : Butterflies!! Who's got em.... in a Reef.


JDigital
01-10-2009, 07:55 PM
So I have been trying to come up with something different for the 40cube I've been working on in regards to stocking...

It will be a reef tank, SPS up top and Zoas down low. I was pondering the idea of having a Butterfly as the "Main attraction" but not sure if they are all reef munchers, or any that are "more" reef safe than others...

Any member here have one (or more) in a reef tank? if so, which one?

EmilyB
01-10-2009, 08:05 PM
I've kept a few different types. Most munch one thing or another. Probably the best one was the Golden, and she loved aiptasia to boot. However, you will be hard pressed to keep a butterfly in a tank that small.

seanoman
01-10-2009, 08:48 PM
I currently have a Racoon Butterfly in our 225 gallon SPS only Reef. It will nip at the corals a little bit, but only usually when the coral is first introduced. Other than that, It only eats clams or other fresh seafood. It will not eat mysis or pellet. Other than that, I absolutely love this fish, it has so much personality and is just beautiful.

Myka
01-10-2009, 08:50 PM
Ya, I think 40g is too small for any Butterfly. What about a nice Fairy Wrasse?

Also, keeping zoas with SPS isn't the best idea as the zoas release toxins that irritate SPS. Zoas have a tendency to take over like a weed too, and will sting and damage SPS. If you do try it, you will have to run a significant amount of carbon to absorb the toxins from the zoas, and large amounts of carbon are also known to reduce polyp extension on SPS. It's kind of a lose, lose situation.

JDigital
01-10-2009, 09:04 PM
^^ Interesting info Myka... I know Zoas are toxic, but did not know they actively release toxins into the water column.. Will have to look into that more. Thanks.

I wanted something different in regards to fish... Everyone has Tangs, Clowns, Wrasses, etc... I don't think I have come across a tank on Canreef (except for seanoman mentioning his/her tank just now) where there is a Butterfly..

Mrfish55
01-10-2009, 09:23 PM
Quite a few people keep Copper Band Butterflies (Marie has a beauty) mine was doing well untill the coral band shrimp got hold of him :sad: I would have to agree that 40gal is too small for a butterfly.

Myka
01-11-2009, 03:41 AM
^^ Interesting info Myka... I know Zoas are toxic, but did not know they actively release toxins into the water column.. Will have to look into that more. Thanks.

You're welcome. Leathers also release toxins into the water. In fact, most corals have the ability, some are just worse than others.

fishoholic
01-11-2009, 03:57 AM
Ya, I think 40g is too small for any Butterfly. What about a nice Fairy Wrasse?

Also, keeping zoas with SPS isn't the best idea as the zoas release toxins that irritate SPS. Zoas have a tendency to take over like a weed too, and will sting and damage SPS. If you do try it, you will have to run a significant amount of carbon to absorb the toxins from the zoas, and large amounts of carbon are also known to reduce polyp extension on SPS. It's kind of a lose, lose situation.

You're welcome. Leathers also release toxins into the water. In fact, most corals have the ability, some are just worse than others.

Good info to know. We have a lot of zoos in our tank and run carbon, in the past we have never been able to keep SPS, the zoos never touched the SPS but still, it makes me wonder. I always just thought it was bad lighting/flow not enough calcium or something, but maybe not.

Lance
01-11-2009, 04:01 AM
^^
I wanted something different in regards to fish... Everyone has Tangs, Clowns, Wrasses, etc... I don't think I have come across a tank on Canreef (except for seanoman mentioning his/her tank just now) where there is a Butterfly..


Emily B keeps Butterflys, or at least she used to. Beautiful tank and fish.

EmilyB
01-11-2009, 04:16 AM
Emily B keeps Butterflys, or at least she used to. Beautiful tank and fish.

Thank you, I posted....he never noticed I guess.....:lol::mrgreen:

Delphinus
01-11-2009, 05:10 AM
Hey, I have a butterfly too! :lol: I keep a CBB. :)

The best reef safe choice is supposedly Hemitauricthys polylepis, the pyramid butterfly.

But I'm afraid to say I too believe none belong in a 40g cube, sorry man. Just too big of a fish.

JDigital
01-23-2009, 02:52 AM
Thanks guys.. I have scrapped that idea.. I'll come up with something else unique I guess...

wgama
01-23-2009, 03:39 AM
O I know a guy who keeps copper band butterflies in his reef tanks with no problems.

JDigital
01-23-2009, 03:53 AM
O I know a guy who keeps copper band butterflies in his reef tanks with no problems.

Yea, I should have mentioned in my first post I was thinking of butterflies other than the very common CBB. :lol:

fishytime
01-23-2009, 04:03 AM
I believe Carmen has one(CBB) in her tank too.

Carmen
01-23-2009, 04:52 AM
yup! Awesome little guy never touches anything other than Mysis!:wink:

VFX
01-23-2009, 06:36 AM
I've kept various Butterflies in my reef tanks for years.

My Long Nose didn't touch my corals but harassed my clams.

My Saddle Back would munch on my hammers occasionally & sometimes would forage around the clam's shell but would leave everything else alone.

Ditto the Double Saddle Back I had.

My Racoons didn't touch any corals or clams except for the occasional nibble at my hammers.

My Copperband annoyed my clams but left anything else alone.

My Heniochus Dipherutes was totally fine in my reef & even my Heniochus Acumitatus left my corals alone. The Acumitatus are known for chomping on corals though so i guess I got lucky with that particular one.

The only problems I had was trying to get my Racoon to eat at first but other than that they all ate like pigs (esp. the Heniochus).

I'm planning on trying a C. Auriga in my next tank (definitely not reef safe!)

It'll start as a FOWLR Butterfly-centric tank but I'll slowly introduce corals & if they get nipped I'll just remove them and put them in my reef tank.

.

grifter
01-23-2009, 07:41 AM
Mrfish55 is right your system might be a little too small for any butterflie. As for it being in a reef I think it all depends on the fish itself Cause I have a Bennetti and a Copperbanded in my reef tank and they don't seem to be hurting anyone, all my feather duster are still there. I also have a 6" Gold flake cruising the tank ass will and I was told he would destroy my polyps, but the only thing he has destroyed so far is my wallet, from all the hakari krill and mysis shrimp he's been eating.
But best of luck though