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Zumaboy

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    Newport Beach, CA. USA
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    scuba, marine biology

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  1. Photo below taken under full spectrum lighting 5500K Gem Tangs (Zebrazoma gemmatum) are becoming increasingly scarce. The smaller Gem Tangs (Zebrazoma gemmatum) imported for the aquarium trade are generally 2.5" - 3.5" in size, and they almost all come from Mauritius. About half a dozen specimens have entered the US aquarium trade this year. These smaller juveniles are normally lighter in color, not displaying many of the rich color intensity of adult Gem Tangs. Until recently virtually no show size specimens have been introduced to the aquarium trade. The folks at iBluewater have been working hard to change this. Several times, while at Madagascar, their team dived the Reunion Island and surrounding small islands in the Indian Ocean, about 140 miles southwest of Mauritius. Their quest was to find out if there were Gem Tangs (Zebrazoma gemmatum) present by those remote small islands. If they were present, what sizes would they be? Large adults are especially hard to find, so these are the ones they were specifically looking for. As with large Yellow Tangs (Zebrasoma flavescens), large Gem Tangs (Zebrasoma gemmatum) dive fast and deep when they sense danger. They are a real challenge for any diver to get close to. Regional village divers say they do not have the expertise or the equipment to chase down the large Gem tangs (Zebrasoma gemmatum). On infrequent occasions, fishermen's nets/lines accidentally snare a large specimen or two. These specimens are normally the unhealthy ones, too weak to be able to dive fast and deep to escape capture. For these dives, the iBluewater team used Rebreathers instead of the usual scuba tanks. The added flexibility and longer dive times gotten from the use of Rebreathers gave them the ability to better explore these remote islands for the large tangs. Photo below taken under full spectrum lighting 5500K Many months of ground work had to be laid before the first of several Show Size (6"- 7") Gem Tangs (Zebrasoma gemmatum) was found. These fish are truly outstanding. Their white "Gem Spots" mesmerize with their intensity and clarity. The gem spots on their caudal fin is light yellow as is the color of their caudal fin. A blue line edges the back end of their caudal fin, this stretches from top to bottom of their caudal fin. The entire dorsal, anal, plevic and caudal fins are also all edged with a blue line. Further, a distinct greennish hue covers the entire pelvic and anal fins. This greenish hue is also present on the upper areas of the dorsal fin. The top and lower eye rims are blue. Blue also covers its upper mouth area, continuing to all of the lower mouth and throat area and extending to the start of the plevic fins. From there it transitions to greennish hues. Once the Gem Tangs have been found, the next set of major problems needed to be resolved - how to store them, then transport such large specimens to Los Angeles. Those details were eventually sorted out, and a holding facility was set up. The first batch of Gem Tangs were then ready to ship. These consisted of 5 singles and a bonded pair. Each of the singles were shipped in about 2 gallons of water and plenty of pure oxygen while the bonded pair received about double those amounts. An appropriate aquarium home for a single show size Gem Tang (Zebrasoma gemmatum) would start out at a 40-gallon fish and live rock only tank, with only a couple of small fish and 2 or 3 small shrimps. More ideally, an 80 to 120 gal tank would provide plenty of space and gallonage for up to a pair of large Gems. Gems Tangs (Zebrasoma gemmatum) are generally hardy fish. They acclimate well to captivity and feed readily. Aside from their rarity, the biggest challenge to owning Gem Tangs is likely to be the almost 4K retail price tag each. In 2009 the retail price for a 3" Gem was $2400. The last known sale price was $3999, sold in early 2013 by one of the three major online stores. This is, of course, a reflection of supply and demand. Import numbers will very likely remain low because of how difficult these Gem Tangs are to find and collect. LFS owners, wholesalers, and hobbyists, if you want to get one of these super rare fish, get in touch with iBluewater. They also have a very limited number of bonded pairs of Show Size Gem Tangs (not available anywhere else). Photo below Melanistic Gem Tang (Zebrazoma gemmatum) Photo taken under full spectrum lighting 5500K
  2. Several year ago, when Ibluewater started doing business with C-Quest, I had the distinct pleasure of getting to know its founder, the late Bill Addison. A significant amount of Joy Wilkerson's research and work on her Clownfish book was derived from information received through Bill's generosity in giving her full access to his breeding facility. Bill and I had many conversations about the Wyoming White (WW) and how difficult it was to successfully breed them in any numbers. His experience was that every clutch of eggs produced less than 5% Wyoming Whites. With some Clownfish, such as Latezonatus, over production made a once rare Clownfish more common. Due to the difficulty and random results of spawning designer Clownfish like the WW, these will likely remain rare in the foreseeable future. My friends at iBluewater were fortunate to have acquired several WWs from C-Quest just before they shut down operations in Puerto Rico. In hindsight, I believe iBluewater would have acquired any remaining WWs available to them. Since C-Quest closed operations, I try to note practically every person or hatchery that had one or more pairs of WW. Rumors would occasionally surface that yet another attempt was made to spawn WWs. None seem to succeed. Bob at iBluewater mentioned Sea and Reef Aquaculture and the excellent work they do. With their success spawning other species of Clownfish, he was very confident that they would be first to spawn the WW again. They are. Congratulations Soren and team! Sea & Reef has successfully spawned the Wyoming White.
  3. and who knows their offsprings may one day dance across to your end of the globe... )
  4. Several weeks ago I posted a pic of the only Blue Spotted Yellow Cap Maroon ever found and as if that was not rare enough. Check out this pic, a mated pair of Blue Spotted Maroons, this WC pair is the only known pair in captivity.
  5. I'm going to agree with LemonLemon that its likely "water quality issues" ie. an ammonia spike. While Brooklynella is more commonly associated with Clownfish it can and does affect other marine fish. This protozoa multiplies rapidly and have been know to kill with within 8 hours. Google The Brooklynella Parasite presented by Charles & Linda Raabe.
  6. Its not a hybrid all its features are that of a Maroon Clown such as the unique features of the Lightning Maroon. No Clownfish found in the Yellow Stripe Maroon's home range has blue features. Chrysopterus is found only in Fiji, Tonga and The Solomon Islands. That said the blue stripes of Chrysopterus is derived from reflective properties rather than "true blue color features". Bicinctus may also have blue stripes, however the are found in the middle east. This fish's features are likely unique. This is probably the only Maroon Clown currently in captivity to have a blue spot.
  7. The blue dot is just on the pictured side....
  8. Premnas Biaculeatus Blue Spotted Yellow Stripe Naked Maroon Clown ( Premnas Biaculeatus) Extremely Rare this Naked Stripe Maroon is of the yellow stripe variety, Naked Stripe Maroons are more commonly of the white stripe variety. To add to this already rare find is a blue spot/dot centered half way at the base of the dorsal fin. Just thought I'd share.
  9. I tend to agree with dieran_green, glue 'em. Any time you do any major aqua scaping such as you have suggested, you run the risk of upsetting and stressing the inhabitants. Try a better brand and or stronger glue I'm curious to know how you managed 3 pairs of Clownfish in the same tank without incident. i) may I ask; how old and how big they are, clarkii,perc and saddleback. ii) is each pair hosted by a nem.
  10. I tend to agree with dieran_green, glue 'em. Any time you do any major aqua scaping such as you have suggested, you run the risk of upsetting and stressing the inhabitants.
  11. Unfortunately collection is still disallowed......
  12. Fuel, you're spot on. One could easily misidentify A.Akindynos(barrier reef anemonefish) for A.Omanensis and to a lesser extent the brown variation of A.Bicinctus.(found mostly around the Eliat coast of Israel). Except that the Oman Clownfish is endemic to the 1242 mile(2002KM) coastal shallows of Oman. 1st pic A.Akindynos........Middle pic A.Bicinctus.....3rd pic A.Omanensis Using the three pics above as a reference guide here are the differences to note. a) A. Bicinctus in the pic above is a brown variation generally found around the Eliat coast of Israel. It is also this variation that is commonly used in CB. The 1st band of Bicinctus is generally thicker than that of Omanensis or Akindynos and generally not constricted or separated at the top. Its middle band while generally narrow is still considerable thick than either Omanensis or Akindynos. Its caudal fin is generally yellowish and never white. Here are the differences between A.Akindynos and A.Omanensis. The pelvic and lower back fins of Omanensis is black while that of Akindynos is generally yellowish to yellowish brown. Their middle bands are narrow however that of Omanensis is much narrower with a scale count not exceeding 4 scales. Its caudal fin is also strongly forked or as "Fuel" puts it Lyretail. I hope this makes it a little easier to sort out the differences between these three Clownfish species.
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