before I purchase any saltwater fish, I asked
the sales representative to feed the ribbon
eel, then the Moorish idol. The ribbon eel
gradually came up and snatched a feeder
goldfish from the tongs. Surprisingly, the
Moorish idol also went after the mysid
shrimp being offered.
From the research I have done, Moorish
idols will perish in captivity since, in the
end, they are still not receiving the specific
nutrients they get from the sponges and
inverts they eat in the wild—much like a
human being fed solely with popcorn. Is
it the same for the ribbon eel? If the eel
has a good appetite, and considering that
shipment was reasonable for the animal,
would it also perish due to a lack of
nutrients? If it is possible to keep them
given the right conditions, what type of
setup would I need for a ribbon eel?
Thanks in advance!
As you discovered from your
research on the Moorish
idol, getting a fish with a
highly specialized diet to eat A
something in captivity is only part of the
nutritional picture—and sometimes, it is a
very small part of it. A Moorish idol may feed
regularly on offerings such as mysid shrimp,
yet still waste away over the course of weeks,
months, or even a year or more because
such foods simply don’t come close to their
natural diet. The real trick is ensuring that
they receive adequate nutrition for sustained
health and growth in the long term. In the
case of the Moorish idol Zanclus cornutus,
this would mean providing a steady supply
of living sponges, which constitute the bulk
of its natural diet. Even those rare hobbyists
who have access to such a food source seldom
succeed in keeping this fish alive for long,
as the species ships poorly and is finicky
beyond belief when it comes to factors such
Most specimens of the ribbon eel Rhinomuraena quaesita will refuse to accept the nonliving meaty
marine foods they require to stay alive in captivity.
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Two Little Fishies, Inc. 1007 Park Centre Blvd. Miami Gardens, FL 33169 U.S.A.
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