View Full Version : new owner of a Russell

07/28/2007, 12:59 PM
Unfortunately for me I didn't do enough research on my lionfish before I bought him/her? See! And listened to the clerk at the fish store. I was given frozen silver eels and told to defrost in water and just drop them in and it will eat. HAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Never happened and I am darn tired of playing with his food and not my own.

So went back to the fish store and bought some ghost shrimp at another clerks suggestion and fed them to "Spike" and he ate about six of them. WOW!!

So now my question is do I continue with the ghost shrimp for a month as I believe it said in your article and then wean him from the frozen. And when we do wean him any suggestions.

Oh and the clerk also sold me five damsels to be in the tank with him saying they would be safe because his mouth is too small to eat them. Well he ate one the first day. And imagine my surprise! A lion fish grows bigger.

I want to add some friends in the tank for him and would love some suggestions. And do I need to find a new home for the damsels.

Thanks for any help



07/30/2007, 11:37 AM
Well from the looks of the pic looks like you have a volitan.. very nice and beautiful fish.. how ever I hope you know that he/she will get to be upwards of 14 to 18 inches. and you will need a 100 gallon tank or bigger later on.. this fish is most definatly the biggest of the lions and as such he will be in charge of the tank. they are a more aggressive eater than some of the small lions , and yes he will " try " to eat just about anything he can get in his/her mouth.. and they have a very very large mouth.. only belive about 5 percent of what the LFS tells you.. most times they haven't clue. As to feeding the fish... Continue for a week or so with the ghost shimp... and use a " feeding stick " grap a shrimp and you will seem where they hinge on their back , this is the muscle they use to propell through the water. if you squeeze this muscle and basically break the back of the shrimp you will be able to hold it in a loose fit , feeding stick.. do this for a week untill your lion gets to know you and the stick , he will soon learn what it looks like.. and feed once a day about the same time.. get a routine going. it will pay off in the end.. once the lion is settled and knows the routine it will be much easier to wean him/ her to prepared foods.. DO NOT !!!!!!! AND I MEAN DO NOT !!!!!! FEED FRESH WATER FEEDER FISH OF ANY !!! KIND... this is not a natural diet for your lion... imagine you eating nothing but Big Mac's and nothing but... how would you feel after a few months.. the fresh water feeders, pellets etc.. will kill your lion... without question... once he is use to the feeder stick then go to the local deli and buy " RAW " shrimp , crab , squid , etc.. using a pair of scicors , cut the meat into strips about the same size as the ghost shrimp. and offer it to your lion.. you can include frozen krill from you LFS but use it in proportion to the other foods.. just like you your lion likes and needs a varity of diet... and a good diet will keep him/her healthy and happy... never ever over feed.. they will eat untill the food it literaly hanging from their mouth.. again how would you feel if you stuffed big mac's into you untill you couldn't swallow any more.. as your lion grows the size of the meat pieces should also increase.. as for how much to feed , just look at your fish and imagine the size of his/her stomach.. and feed accordingly .. If your lion does not take to the prepared foods right off ,, don't worry.. they can go for weeks without eating.. and some individuals can be down right fussy.. I have seen me feed one of mine a piece of shrimp ,, he grabbed it , chewed it and spit it right back out.. this is something you have watch for.. to make sure they are eating the prepared foods that you might think they ate but spit it out when you where not looking.. don't be afraid to let he go hungry for a couple of days ... if your lion doesn't take to the prepared foods right off , let him/her go hungry for a day or two then try...

Make no mistake.. these fish are smart and they do learn.. the feeding stick if more for your benifit than the fish.. if you ever try to " hand feed " as some people have.. he might think the next time you have your hand in the tank that your fingers are food and come visit you.. even though these fish are smart ,, remember it is still only a fish... no matter how tame your lion seems to be ,,, RESPECT THIS FISH AT ALL !!!! TIMES... much to popular belive... these fish do not attack you.. you get stung by bumping into them.. if something spooks the fish and he/she gets defensive.. they may come over near you and will erect their spines and wait for you to make the next move..

I hope this helps you... enjoy your fish ...