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FAQs about Dragon Moray Eels 1

Related FAQs: Dragon Morays 2,
FAQs on: Dragon Moray Identification, Dragon Moray Behavior, Dragon Moray Compatibility, Dragon Moray Stocking/Selection, Dragon Moray Systems, Dragon Moray Feeding, Dragon Moray Health, Dragon Moray Reproduction, Morays/Eels: Moray Eels 1, Moray Eels 2, Moray Eels 3, Moray Identification, Moray Selection, Moray Behavior, Moray Compatibility, Moray Systems, Moray Feeding, Moray Disease, Moray Reproduction, Zebra Moray Eels, Snowflake Morays, Freshwater Moray Eels, Other Marine Eels,

Related Articles: The Hawaiian Dragon Eel Enchelycore pardalis by Marco Lichtenberger, Moray Eels, Zebra Morays, Snowflake Morays, Ribbon Morays, The "Freshwater" Moray Eels, Freshwater Moray Eels by Marco Lichtenberger, Other Marine Eels

Dragon morays... Hlth. diag., sys. f's      5/3/17
Hey Crew,
I'm a little concerned about CO2 and O2 levels in a basement tank. Set up is a 180 gallon 72x22x24 acrylic tank with 60 gallon sump large skimmer and lots of live rock in sump and display tank. My return pump is actually for a pond.
<Hopefully w/ no metal to corrode, leach into the system>
I have to restrict it with a ball valve to control water flow.
<Mmm; I'd be checking (the stamp AND consumption directly) re watts here. I live in a town w/ very expensive electricity. You may be better off investing in another pump>
I also have a large chamber in the sump with a mass of Cheto to control Nitrates. In habitants are two dragon morays
<Will need more room than this in time>
and a hand full of damsels, snails and crabs. So my one of my dragons has always had a faster respiration then the other but both breath harder at times then other morays I've kept? Is this a Enchelycore thing?
<No and no; s/b about the same>
My tank is in my basement should I be concerned about C02?
<I hope not; but I would check, AND install a CO2 meter>
Not sure how to post videos for you to actually see what I'm talking about
but here is a link?
<Ah, good>
<Mmm; the lighter colored animal IS respiring too quickly to suit me...
What is the water temperature here? I'd lower it to the mid 70's F...
slowing metabolism, increasing DO...), and the rock here? Appears to have a bunch of BGA on it (likely too toxic)... See, as in READ on WWM re limiting this. Do you have a DO test kit? I'd procure one ASAPractical and test here... AND in the meanwhile use a pound or two of GAC in your filter flow path and a pad or two of PolyFilter. Bob Fenner>
As always thank you not only for your reply but also for your service.
You guys are awesome.
Sincerely Brad.
Re: Dragon morays      5/4/17

Thank you Bob,
<Welcome Brad>
-Pond pump ( 2700 gph) is a sealed unit much like an aquarium pump no metal and only 30watts.
<Ah, good; and a bargain watt-wise!>
-I keep the temp @78 maybe I should lower it?
<Yes I would; at least for now... 74-75>
Water quality is as follows ( 0 ammonia , 0 nitrites and below .005-.010 Nitrates.
and rarely ever changes.
<How are Nitrates rendered thus? You may have a toxicity issue w/ chemical filtrants>
-I will read up about BGA
But tank overall has very little algae.
<The purplish red material on the rock is my concern. Need to sample, look under a scope...>
GAC will be added in sump.
<In a bag (likely Dacron/polyester), in the water flow path>
The lighter eel has always been like this but otherwise acts normal.
I do have the returns pointed to the surface and there is a lot of turbulence/ gas exchange.
<Good; this and the skimmer should render DO at saturation (7-8 ppm)>
There is one more thing I didn't mention. I have a auto top off which is feed through a 3 stage carbon filter. I do not have an RO unit. But I would suspect a ton of algae of my phosphates were over the top though.
<Mmm; not necessarily. Again, it may be that other real algae (Thallophytes) are being displaced, outcompeted by the Cyanobacteria>
I work in the auto field and understand trying to diagnose people's issues without actually seeing everything so I appreciate your willingness to give your opinion and expertise.
<Heeeeee! Don't you and I know it/this!>
And yes I will most likely have to re-home one of my beloved eels. Like Marco I absolutely love morays especially Enchelycore sp. thanks again Mr. Fenner.
<Cheers Brad. Will share w/ MarcoL. Bob Fenner>
Re: Dragon morays.     Here's Marco!      5/4/17

Hi Brad and Bob,
both eels breathe rather fast for my taste, especially the lighter one.
As Bob notes , that's not an Enchelycore thing. I'd try slightly reducing the temperature and increase the water flow on the surface even more. In addition, check the pH. Should be at least 8.0, better 8.2-8.4.
Also, ensure that the basement itself gets enough fresh air.
<Thank you/Danke Marco. BobF>

Japanese Dragon Eel HELP!!!!!! Mysterious losses... env.      4/6/17
I was wondering if you guys could possibly shed some light on a problem I'm having with Japanese Dragon eels.
<I will respond here and have sent your message on to MarcoL for his sep. resp.>
I am currently on my 3rd specimen within a 2 year period. The other 2 passed away after being in my current tank after 1 year and about 7 months respectively. Unfortunately, the one in my tank now I fear won't make it
through the night, and has only been in the tank for 1 week.
<Mmm; something wrong here... environmentally likely. Do you measure dissolved oxygen?>
I have a 150 gallon display tank with a 20 gallon sump setup and refugium. I run a protein skimmer, carbon reactor, and biopellet reactor.
<Why this last?>

Temp 78F, ph8.2, salinity 1.023-1.025, ammonia 0, nitrite 0, nitrate 20-40.
There is about 130 pounds of live rock, sand bottom, and terracotta pots (non glazed) in the main tank. There are also anywhere from 6-12 damsels in the tank at any given time, who do not seem to ever be affected (3 of which have been in the tank since the beginning).
<A good clue>

Diet consists of haddock, striped bass, squid, silversides, shrimp, krill, etc... Every eel has appeared to be in great health. Very active during the day. Very social with anyone that walks up to the tank. Great appetites. However, out of the blue it is like a switch is flipped and they stop eating, begin "gasping",
<This too>

become very lethargic, then die within a day or two. I have tried water changes, antibiotics, antiparasitics, without any luck. The first 2 eels were around 18-24 inches, while this new one is only about 12 inches. Any ideas what could be going on and why it only affects the eels?
<The DO issue comes to mind most prominently. A 150 isn't much room for a large eel... I'd add aeration... mechanically; and check to see that O2 is near saturation (7 or so ppm) here. Bob Fenner>
Thanks for any advice or help, Evan
Fwd: Japanese Dragon Eel HELP!!!!!!     4/6/17
I forgot to mention I have a full cleanup crew of Nassarius snails, blue legged hermits and peppermint shrimp that also appear to never be affected.
<Also leading me to suspect gas solubility issue.
Re: Japanese Dragon Eel HELP!!!!!!     4/6/17

Thank you for such a quick response...sadly though, this eel has passed as well. In terms of O2, how do I measure it?
<There are colorimetric assays like for much of what interests aquarists water-quality wise; as well as more expensive electronic meters>
Would the protein skimmer add enough O2 into the system?
<Not necessarily, no>
Could the terra-cotta be leaching some sort of poison?
<Mmm; good question: A point of fact is that there ARE other possible sources of morbidity, mortality here that would disfavor a large Muraenid (over damsels, the mix of invertebrates you mentioned)... I would remove
ALL that is questionable. I might avail myself of PolyFilter... as an aid (via coloring) as to what might be trouble here>
If O2 related, why do you think the larger eels lasted so much longer than the little one, who only survived 1 week and was doing great at my LFS for months in a much smaller tank and a Kidako eel tankmate?
<Can't say directly... but this IS the case... that smaller eels are more easily poisoned, die from env. stress vs. larger. I would have you (it will take a while) read generally re such HERE:
AND the linked files above. Bob Fenner>

Aquarium Build; and Enchelycore comp.     Gabe's go      11/16/16
Hi Crew
I have a question regarding a future tank build.
<I have an answer regarding your future tank build :)>
I'm thinking about a 48"x48" cube ( 220 gallon) for two dragon morays?
<Hmm... Maybe not the best idea.>
I currently have one Hawaiian dragon alone in a 6ft 125
<Too small if you want to keep it long term>
but would love to have a pair. What are your thoughts on those dimensions opposed to a 6 ft x 2ft 180 gallon.
Thank you
<Brad, the problem isn't the tank as much as it is the eels. The eels may not fight on an average day, but I can guarantee they will during feeding time. Taking into consideration the price of these specimens, I wouldn't do it. I would suggest the tank be larger as well if you decide you truly want to do this. Think about 150-200 gallons for each eel? You might also consider doing a really large tank and split it in half. Unless you can find a confirmed pair that has been living together in harmony for a very long time, I would steer away from keeping a pair. In the meantime, see WetWeb RE Dragon Morays. Let us know if you have any further questions, Brad. Cheers, Gabe Walsh>
Re: Aquarium Build; Enchelycore       11/16/16

Thank you for replying.
<My pleasure>
I truly appreciate your service.
<Thank you. We appreciate you using WetWeb>
Honestly I have read as much as I can find on these morays. Ever since I was a kid I have dreamed of keeping one.
<I too have wanted one for years. They're one of the reasons I changed from freshwater tanks to saltwater. At 15 though, I can't afford one.>
I have a bit of an obsession when it comes to morays.
<Same here>
I have been lucky enough to have snowflakes, zebras golden tails and even a green moray at different times in my life but Enchelycore sp have been out of my reach until now.
<That's a nice eel résumé my friend. I have also kept all of the above with the exception of a green moray. Where did you find yours?>
Space is always a factor and the 125 was the largest tank I could physically get into my house/basement. If I go bigger I will have to build in place.
I have read 150 gallon tanks are ok for one but the dimensions are nearly the same as my 125 ? Do you think I will be able to keep one alone in a 125.
Thank you again
Sincerely Brad
<Brad, in the end it is up to you. I can only lend you advice. With top-notch filtration and perfect water quality, you may be able to keep it for a little longer. The dragon may not necessarily be too big for the tank, but it may stress and die. How large is it now? They grow easily to three feet, which I'm sure you know. If it were me, I would hold onto it as long as I could, but as soon as I noticed ANY signs of stress that could be connected to tank size and swimming space, I would look for a new home. Again, I can't tell you what to do because it is your decision in the end. As long as the eel is happy and healthy, a 125 could work for the time being. However, if you ever get the chance to upgrade, you should definitely do it. I can see why you want to hold on to it as long as you can, as I wouldn't want to part with an eel of that value. We'd love to see some pictures of your setup too, Brad. Maybe a more efficient setup could allow for a longer time with your eel. Thanks again for writing and feel free to contact us again, as always. Cheers, Gabe>
Re: Aquarium Build     11/17/16

Thanks Gabe for all the advice.
<My pleasure. Write to us any time.>
The health of the moray is top priority. He or she is only about 18" and about 2" diameter. I purchased from BlueZoo aquatics in May.
<Ahh. Good old BlueZoo Aquatics. I order from them at least once a week. They send the healthiest livestock in comparison to other companies.>
I have 100 lbs of live rock, a large skimmer and a Fluval 405 with carbon and Purigen.
<This sound good for now. You may need to add/upgrade filtration once your eel gets bigger. They produce a LOT of waste, as I'm sure you know.>
Water parameters are below safe levels. Right now the tank looks empty but I know the effect a 30"+ moray has on a tank that size.
<Glad to hear you know what's coming.>
I'm serious in thinking a custom build tank will be my only option in the future.
<Makes sense. You can only fit so much through a door.>
Thank you again. It's always great to have a second opinion.
<Brad, thanks again for writing. That's a beautiful specimen you have. Hopefully everything will work out nicely for you and the eel. Good luck in the future! Cheers, Gabe>

Dragon Moray in a 90 gallon... no reading, using WWM       5/12/16
I would like to have your thought on this set up. A dragon moray with a school of damsels in a 90 gallon FOWLR.
<.... Nah; too small; and the damsels, food....
READ here:
and the linked files above>
The tanks filtration consists of a 55 gallon sump with an oversized skimmer ( rated for 180 gallons) and some live rock.
I don't plan on any other fish but might like to add an additional medium moray ( Jeweled(Muraena lentiginosa) or Golden tail).

I know larger is always better but I have this tank established and ready to go.
Oh and one more thing, the tank currently has a yellow Edged moray (<http://researcharchive.calacademy.org/research/ichthyology/catalog/fishcatget.asp?genid=384> Gymnothorax
<http://researcharchive.calacademy.org/research/ichthyology/catalog/fishcatget.asp?spid=57813> flavimarginatus
)in it. I had ordered a Jeweled (Muraena lentiginosa) but received this one instead, but once it arrived in the mail there was no turning it away.
<I'd stick w/ this fish here. Not add others>
Seller wouldn't take it back either So I have found another home. Have you ever housed one of these eels?
<PLEASE; use, as in search on WWM before writing us>
I have had many Morays in the past and this guy seems very docile. He is only 20" now but seems to be growing every
time I look at him. Also I feed my eels fresh fish and squid from whole foods.
Do you see any issues or concerns I need to know feeding grocery store sea food?
Thank you for taking the time to read this.
Sincerely Brad
<As sincerely, Bob Fenner>

Question for Marco about eels        11/20/15
Dear Marco,
I currently have a 72x24x24 tank with a 72x20x20 sump with lots of LR. Huge skimmer and plenty of flow in the tank with a gyre pump and 2 MP's.
The tank's LR formations were built specifically for eels, all caves from end to end.
<Sounds very good.>
Currently I have a 27" Japanese Dragon eel in the tank all by himself for 2 months now so would I be able to add another one?
<This depends a lot on the specific individual. Some accept another eel, some don't. Hard to give a proper prognosis. When both eels are added together and none has established its territory it's more probable to work out. Adding another eel months or years later is more risky in general. If it was my tank and choice, I'd keep only keep one dragon eel per tank. In fact that's exactly what I do with my larger eels.>
And if so, what size?
<Same size when referring to E. pardalis, slightly larger when considering some Gymnothorax species.>
If not, would I be able to add any other kind of eel?
<In general the same risk as with another E. pardalis.>
I cannot rearrange the rocks!
<Also see http://www.wetwebmedia.com/HIDragonMorayArt.htm  and http://www.wetwebmedia.com/DragEelCompF.htm  and
http://www.wetwebmedia.com/moraycompfaqs.htm  for more cases/opinions.>
Thanks for your help, Bill
<Welcome. Marco.>
Sent from my iPhone while drinking & driving

Dragon Eel, Dogface puffer, Volitans Lionfish (mix) question... Earl Clay Tres chimes in!      9/28/15
Hey guys. Long time reader, first time questioner here.
About a week ago I introduced a 18" Dragon Eel and a 6" Dogface puffer to a 150 gallon tank without any other fish.
<Be sure to use a powerful skimmer and possibly mechanical filtration for these messy carnivores. Fascinating but messy!> The next day I added a Volitans Lionfish to the tank that was slightly smaller than the puffer.
<This is likely to be a dangerous mix. As you mention, a puffer can be a fin nipper and worse...eels and lions are relatively slow, low-key animals who are easy pickings for a puffer. Puffers (and Tetradontiforms generally) are smart, relative to fish, and have personality. This can backfire when they realize they are in there with two captive compatriots. Those teeth are well equipped for tearing up soft skin, fins, and even biting through the spines of a lionfish...neither of which are likely to outmaneuver a puffer long-term. If the puffer decides to get mean, neither of those fish has any protection from it. A
puffer can be like a battering ram with a beak and 6" is big enough to be ornery and set in its ways...time will tell how this particular one will act. I have met several people with nasty scars from puffers and triggers.
Keep an eye on your fingers. ;) >
The eel and puffer acclimated very well and began eating and swimming in the open within a day. They even for lack
of a better term, "cuddle" together throughout the day and the puffer even sleeps in the same cave as the eel. <Based on your decor/rockwork in my experience, fish, especially largish ones that may have a harder time finding good cover than typically smaller ones might, will gravitate toward the same "best" cover.>
The lionfish on the other hand was very timid and wouldn't eat for 5 days.
<Not unusual, I recommend having the source of purchase feed a lion and see what or if it's eating. You may have to wean
it off of live food. I have had luck with mysis shrimp for this.>
Last night we found the lionfish with bites taken out of his belly, and unfortunately he has passed away.
<Sorry to hear it. The "forensic case" is clear here.>
We believe it was the puffer that did this, not the eel.
<Simple enough to tell: what do the bites look like exactly? Pointed teeth or a "beak"? Pictures would help here...I recommend taking some post-mortem photos or even putting the fish in a freezer (!) if you want to resolve these mystery murders or diseases more concretely.>
I have read on your site, unfortunately after the fact, that puffers can nip at lionfish fins.
Is this amount of aggression towards the lionfish normal, though?
Are the puffer and eel really "buddies" at this point, or are they displaying some sort of "dominance game" with each other? <Fish act like "dive buddies" all the time for a variety of reasons. I suspect at least part of it is as I referred to before, they are both doing the same things for similar reasons and their "hanging out" is a natural result. How much does the eel move around the tank? They are normally pretty sedentary and should hole up in a semi-permanent home. This seems like they are simply new fish to the tank that are investigating, taking advantage of the other's discoveries (escape routes, discovering food).>
Any insight would be greatly appreciated. Thanks, Evan.
<Sad to hear of your loss but with experience comes knowledge. My advice is to study up as much as you can, especially with large possibly volatile predators, before adding a new fish. WWM has some pretty in-depth info on triggers and puffers. Another key thing with these guys is order of introduction: least to most "mean".
The lionfish should have gone in first, then the eel, then the puffer imo.
The idea is to let the more timid or vulnerable guys to establish themselves first and also when the new ones come along they have not already entrenched themselves in a tank they consider their turf to defend.
I hope this helps! -E.C.3>

Moray eel tank. Dragon...       10/10/14
Hello to whom ever reads this at WWM! hope all is well :)
<Thank you Callum; yes>
I have a few questions that I was hoping you could answer as I have searched for a good while and found little information to help me out with a particular problem :)
Basically I now have a fully cycled 450 jewel vision bow-front aquarium that I was hoping to create a predator reef if possible :)
Dimensions are;60"x18"x24" - 450 litres (120 US gal)
<Ah yes; a handsome set-up; and barely large enough for one Dragon of size>
Now I was hoping to get a Japanese/Hawaiian dragon moray eel in the next few months but am not sure what to keep with it. In particular I was wondering if in this size tank it would be possible to house both a white mouth moray eel and a Japanese dragon together along with a few fish tank mates?
<Mmm; really... best to keep this species by itself... and train it (via feeding... with a stick!) to come out more often. It is a bonafide piscivore. WILL eat most fish tankmates in time>
Also would it be possible with good filtration and skimming to keep a few low care corals in this tank?
<Hard to do with this fish as well... It is given to periodic rambling about its tank, knocking over most everything not securely fastened in place>
Here was the stocking list that I was thinking of :)
Fish;. Hawaiian
dragon moray eel x1. White mouth moray eel x1. Blue throat triggerfish x1. Regal angelfish x1
. Yellowtail/Red Coris wrasse (gaimard) x1
. Blue/green reef Chromis x4
. Turbo snail x10
. Sand sifting star x2
<These might go with the Dragon>
. Green fluorescent mushroom coral
. Colony polyps
. Thick finger leather coral
. Brain coral – Favites
. Candy cane coral
<These stonies won't last long here>
TMC V2 pro skim 900 protein skimmer
TMC V2 Aqualumen 900 LED lighting system
FX6 Fluval external filter
<This filtration will need to be added to; as well as providing much more circulation>
Various power heads
Thanks in advance guys! Any info on the white mouth moray would be extremely helpful! :)
<Please read Marco's article re this species here: http://wetwebmedia.com/HIDragonMorayArt.htm
and the linked FAQs files above. Bob Fenner>
Re: Moray eel tank
Thanks bob! really appreciate the quick reply!
Think I will just stick with the dragon in a species tank :)
<This is best. A friend, Randy Donowitz at the Pratt Institute has an almost puppy like one... DO BE CAREFUL however... this fish is prone to leaving the tank i
f it can, AND IT DOES BITE>
Just out of interest as I cant seem to find much information on it, how does the white mouth normally do with tank mates?
<Okay if they're compatible with it>
Is it near the same as the dragon in terms of compatibility?
<Much more easy-going>
And by extra filtration do you mean more biological filtration etc or more flow?
I also thought the FX6 was a good choice as it was rated for up too 400 gallons?
Thanks for your help! :)
<Better, for sure, to have redundancy here. BobF>
Re: Moray eel tank
Wow that's sounds awesome man! cant wait to get mine now :) and will keep the tank locked down tight! wouldn't want to loose such a gorgeous fish over something as easily preventable as that!
Thanks for your help again Bob and am sure will be needing your expert advice in the future :D

Refugium dragon... eel placement/sys.       10/10/12
Hey guys I've got a question, first off I hope everyone is doing well. I have a 240 with a 75 gallon sump and an extra 100 gallon that I was going to use for a refugium, just a dsb rock and macro algae. The main tank will
hopefully be some triggers haven't decided what kind yet.
<Do take care here; Balistids aren't really very "mix-able" behaviorally>
The question is, would I be able to put a Hawaiian dragon eel in the refugium to avoid trouble with the triggers?
<In the 240, possibly>
 I will mostly be using it for a nutrient export I guess what I'm saying is, will a big messy eel negate the helpfulness of the refugium?
<Not really; if food/s, maintenance are matched>
 The dt might just be one bruiser like a clown or queen trigger
<I wouldn't mix/place an eel with these. Too likely to be bitten>
 so it won't be crazy overstocked. Well thanks for the help and for listening to my ramblings.
<Rambling guy Bob Fenner> 

Japanese Dragon eel and Cryptocaryon 11/30/10
Hi good day Marco
<Hi Kellvin.>
I am quite confused right now:) My dragon eel tank was infested by Ick.
<What other fishes are in there?>
I understand that I can't dose medication because of the eel, any option that I remedy the current infestation of Ick? Hyposalinity to 1.009? Is it safe for the dragon eel?
<Yes, should work, but is not always a reliable cure (some Cryptocaryon strains don't care that much about salinity). My preferred method would be to remove other fishes into a hospital tank to treat them separately and leave the moray eel in its tank without other fishes for at least 4-6 weeks. Chances are good it won't be a carrier, especially if it is healthy.
Please see http://www.wetwebmedia.com/ichartmar.htm to get familiar with this disease and its treatment.>
Thank you and sorry for asking you so many question. Kellvin Lim
<Good luck. Marco.>

Japanese Dragon eel 11/14/10
Hi crew of WetWebMedia,
<Hello Kellvin.>
Recently, I had purchase two 18- 24" Japanese dragon eel. I have a 6" Queen trigger and another 10" dragon eel. Can I transfer both the juv dragon eel and queen trigger together with large dragon eel? Thanks.
<Usually Dragon eels get along well with each other. However, the size difference of your eels is quite significant, so there some danger for the smaller eel to get swallowed.>
With Regards Kellvin
<Cheers, Marco.>
Re: Japanese Dragon eel, incomp. 11/14/10

Hi Marco,
<Hello Kellvin.>
Thank for your reply. I understand that a bigger dragon eel will eat a smaller dragon eel. How about compatibility between dragon eel and queen trigger? Will they attack each other when kept together?
<The circumstances are not very good: Both are among the most aggressive fishes generally kept in tanks and moray eels are also believed to be one reason why the triggers developed their trigger. Sometimes Dragon eels work with triggers, but in other cases they are eaten or bitten badly at night.
It depends a lot on the personality and experiences of the fishes so far.
The queen trigger itself can also become a nuisance to the eels permanently biting their dorsal fin. Given the eels have enough adequate caves to hide this poses less of a problem for your larger ones. However, if I was in your situation I would rather not put the 6" trigger with the larger, 2ft moray eels.>
<Welcome. Marco.>

Hawaiian Dragon Moray Issue, sys., hlth. 11/10/10
Hello crew,
<Hello Josh.>
I'll try to make this short as I'm sure you have plenty to get to. About a month ago I stumbled upon a 32" Hawaiian dragon moray with tank and everything for a price I couldn't run away from ($500). Basically the lady didn't have any idea what her husband had left her with. To get to the point, when I got the eel home and moved (I took all the water with me) I checked the water and realized that the nitrates were 100 ppm+ and all they had been feeding it were silversides and krill. I immediately started with the water changes, and have now got the nitrates down to about 30-40 ppm.
Still not great, I know, but it is getting there and I'm trying not to do to much at once to avoid to much stress on an animal I know a lot of people never get a shot at owning.
<This issue needs to be addressed. Changing from high nitrates to low nitrates fast is not very stressful for a fish given a stable pH (it's like getting some fresh mountain forest air for us), the other way round is much
worse (this would be like coming from the forest and moving into a hardly aerated basement office).>
My problem is, in the last week or so I have noticed that the nostril flares on the front of the eels face were turning red. Today I checked him over, and one is nearly gone with the other looking not to excited about
still being there.
<Bacterial infection.>
He also was eating like a champ when I got him, and now just acts mildly interested but just twitches and turns away at any food I offer. It has only been about a week and a half without eating, not much for an eel I would imagine, but I can't help but think it is somehow related to what's going on with his nose area.
<You are certainly right.>
One of his eyes is also slightly cloudy looking, but I had just chalked that up to poor water quality for such a long period of time in his past home, so I'm not really to worried about that at the moment.
<Probably also a part of the infection.>
Anyways the ammonia is 0, nitrites are 0, nitrates are 30-40 as stated (and getting better), salinity is 1.024, temp is 77 degrees.
The tank is 120 gallon with probably about 50-75 lbs. of live rock, 80 lbs. of black reef sand, and 10 or so assorted damsels. It has a wet-dry filter, with an average protein skimmer, and a Hydor Koralia 1 powerhead in the tank for more flow.
<If this is the only powerhead in a 120 gallon tank it should be close to the surface and almost parallel to force as much gaseous exchange as possible without bringing air bubbles into the water. If you have another powerhead available add it. In moray eel tanks of this size I personally use powerheads moving about 2.500 gallons per hour or sometimes more to move the surface in addition to a skimmer.>
Since I got him I changed his diet to clams, shrimp, haddock, and squid (which he loved)....feeding him twice a week. I also began adding Brightwell Aquatics Vitamarin-M, and Brightwell Aquatics AminoMega with HUFA's to his food one time a week.
<What you feed sounds very good.>
It just drives me crazy, having improved everything about his conditions and seeing him now acting lethargic, hanging his head over rocks and just kind of laying (not supporting himself I guess). He does sometimes seem to "scrape" the side of his face along some of the rocks in the tank like something is bothering him. And there is the obvious loss off the nostril flares and not eating. So basically I am at a loss on what to do with this one.
<What I would do: One or two large water changes to get the nitrates to 20 ppm or lower, probably re-think the surface current, check pH. If this does not help within a week (not a good sign), a treatment with an antibiotic such as Maracyn 2 might be necessary.>
Any ideas would be greatly appreciated, Josh
<Good luck. Marco.>
Re: Hawaiian Dragon Moray Issue 11/11/10

Man, you are quick with the help, I really appreciate it.
<No problem.>
I thought sure I had remembered to add the pH info......at any rate, the pH in the tank is 8.2.
<Sounds fine.>
Upon reading your response I checked the pump coming up from the wet dry, that they had on there, and it's only pumping about 400 gph or so at the head pressure it is at. So, the next addition will be a Supreme Mag 9.5 pump in the next week I think. I took the existing 400 gph Hydor powerhead and put it up at the surface on one end of the tank, along with directing the wet dry return up towards the surface in the middle. In addition I went and got another Hydor powerhead, the 1,050 gph and put it on the other end of the tank blowing across.
<This should help a lot with water movement and gaseous exchange.>
Did a 50% water change today, and hoping to do another 1 or 2 before the weekend is out. He looks a little better, showing less red in the affected area of the nostrils anyway. And he seems to be a little less lethargic and more alert.
<These would be good signs. Hopefully he will recover again.>
Probably going to try to feed him a little in the next day or two. I really don't want to have to medicate, but I guess if that's what it comes to it has to be done. Just makes me really nervous.
Anyways, thank you so much for the help. Any other thoughts, I'm all ears.
<Sounds good so far. I'd be interested in the progress of the situation.
Cheers, Marco.>
Re: Hawaiian Dragon Moray Issue 11/17/10

Hello again Marco.
<Hi Josh.>
I wanted to thank you for your help with my Dragon Moray.
I got the nitrates down to about 15, and now that he is mine, plan on keeping then there. I went ahead and added the Mag 9.5 pump yesterday, in addition to the powerheads I had already added last week. So the tank is turning pretty good, especially at the surface. All of the red has gone from the affected areas, and the other nostril flare never fell off.
<That's good news.>
It looks normal again, and the one that had gone away looks healed and hopefully will grow back?
<Yes, very likely it will.>
One eye is still a tad cloudy looking, but I wonder if it's just going to be that way.
<Probably this will go away, too, until both eyes look the same.>
He ate a little squid last night when I tried to feed him, first food in 2 weeks, so that was a relief.
<Very good.>
All of his color is back, and he is back in his spot and acting normal. I'm just glad I didn't have to medicate. Just goes to show one doesn't always have to jump to "worse case scenario."
<Hope for the best, plan for the worst.>
Took care of the obvious, and the eel did the rest himself, pretty tough bugger. The only thing I'm thinking about doing is investing in a chiller.
With that Mag Drive pump my temp. is running at about 82 or so. I would think he would probably like it a little cooler, but I could be wrong.
<No, you are right. Something between 72 and 77 F would be my choice.>
Anyways, thanks for the help and advice, if nothing else it kept me from freaking out and over thinking things. Hopefully I won't have a reason to be bugging you about this fella again. -Josh
<Have fun. Marco.>

dragon moray and zebra moray :) 10/30/10
hello crew
<Hi. First of all I have bad news for you: Your shift key seems broken.>
I was wondering if you could answer my questions as I cant see to find the answer first of all I can get a Hawaiian dragon eel for about £400 is this a good price
also I will be purchasing a 5x2x2ft aquarium and will also have a zebra eel in there with it is it possible for them to live together in that tank or will it be like a battleground :)
I already have the zebra eel and he is about 24inch and the dragon moray will be around 16inch apparently
<I do not recommend mixing them. It is probable the Dragon moray will attack the Zebra eel as soon as it has reached a similar size.>
also I have a Sailfin tang that is in need of a upgrade will it be safe with them 2 in that tank
<Can be bitten by the Dragon eel, too. Depends a lot on the individual eel you'll get. Many E. pardalis work rather poor with most tank mates.>
thank you for your time
A hopeful Hawaiian dragon eel keeper :)
<The key seems to work again. Hooray! Cheers, Marco.>
Dragon moray and zebra moray :) 11/01/10

To Marco
Thanks for the swift reply :) sorry about the grammar I'm not too good with things like that :)
Just a couple more questions: Will the Hawaiian Dragon moray eat all tankmates then or does it depend.
<Large tank mates that can stand their ground should be OK. Likely you can also have success with cleaner shrimps and sometimes even small fishes not worth a bite.>
and also how long do they live.
<Medium sized and larger moray eels can live more than 20 years.>
I think I may try it and as soon as I see any aggression I will remove one.
<The poor Zebra moray...>
I do love eels though and will be purchasing one about next summer. I think maybe I'll let you know how its going and send pictures.
<Always good to get updates.>
When I asked the guy he said £800 but then said a medium sized one is £400. I thought it was a steal.
Anyway thank you for your time and I wish you all the best. A hopeful Hawaiian dragon eel keeper :)
<Cheers, Marco.>
Re: Dragon moray and zebra moray :) 11/01/10
One more thing extremely sorry. What tank mates would you recommend if any I saw some groupers and such with a Hawaiian dragon eel at a Sealife centre which was really cool :)
<Yes, this is a combination that can work given enough space for the grouper. What I personally like the most is seeing them being kept as pairs. This works especially well if two are bought and introduced to the tank at the same time. Almost failsafe if the two have been caught together as a mated pair.>
Best wishes
A hopeful Hawaiian dragon eel keeper :)
<Cheers, Marco.>
Dragon and Zebra Morays; tankmates 11/1/10

Hello again
<Welcome back.>
About the dragon eel again.
<Please use "I" instead of "I" in your emails to us, I (or we) have to correct all of it to make these Email postable and honestly I got better things to do. That's not a difficult grammar rule.>
I also have a saddled puffer and I was just reading on a website that if a eel eats a puffer it will die is this true?
<Not because of the poison, but it is possible that the Eel tries to swallow the Puffer while it is puffing. It can get stuck inside its throat and eventually both fish die. Try Google with "Puffer fish kills big fish" or "Puffer fish kills Dolphin".>
if so I will give the puffer to a friend. I just love the Dragon eel but I am now very concerned about the Zebra Eel. Do you recommend I should give it a go or is there no chance it will work
<If they were my fish I would not try. I cannot exclude it could work, but from my experience I would not be willing to take the risk.>
I would like to see if it works but I'm not sure if I would do at the expense of my Zebra Eel. Would a Jewel Moray eel be a better choice? (the Zebra moray is 28inch now)
<As a tank mate for the Zebra eel: Yes. As a tank mate for a Dragon eel: No... too small... will be dinner at some point.>
Also thought that the Hawaiian dragon moray and the zebra eel would end up at 4ft and the dragon moray 2.5ft as they would be growing at the same rate or is this wrong?
<The Dragon eel will be much more massive with a significantly larger girth, and by far more aggressive. They probably will get along fine for some time, maybe even a few years, but at one point I'd bet the Dragon will clarify who is the top predator in the tank. The Zebra eel may be gone over night. I'd keep them in separate systems.>
I hope that you can give me some advice as I really want the dragon moray :) Good luck in the future and I appreciate your advice and help If I do purchase the eel I will keep you updated Callum :) (new tank - 5ftx2ftx2ft) (old tank - 4ftx20inchx15inch)
<Cheers, Marco.>
eels - 11/03/10

Hello crew
<Hi Cullum>
I am upgrading my tank as you may remember (still haven't decided on that Dragon eel :) ) I will have to take all my fish out of the aquarium and put them in buckets for a while. Do you recommend me putting the filter and a heater in there?
<Yes. Don't let the filter dry out. It needs to keep its bacteria alive.>
Also they will be going into the tank straight away as the filter I
have is rated for 180 gallon or something like that and I
will be moving the same rocks over and the water with some RO water is this ok?
<RO water? You probably mean saltwater mixed from RO water and salt. I'd definitely add some more live rock to the new system and use as much freshly mixed water as possible. If the old water has significant nitrate readings I'd dump most of it. The water itself contains not much beneficial bacteria you want to transfer. It's mostly the rocks, the filter and the sand/gravel that do. I'd transfer all the rocks and a part of the sand/gravel (and dump the rest just like most of the water). Transferring all sand/gravel will likely lead to very cloudy water, because a lot of the fine organic material trapped in between the grains will be released.>
The new tank is 5x2x2ft and the old one is 4ftx2ftx15inch is this enough water?
<For what?>
As the tank is going to be in the same place as the old one this has created a problem.
<Yes. That is why you need all the old rock, possibly some new rock and the filter. A skimmer would be very beneficial in this situation. I guess you do not own a skimmer and do not intend to buy one (If you do: good idea!). Borrowing a spare one from a friend would also be a good idea for the move. Also, after the change you should definitely check for Ammonia at least twice a day for about a week, to see if transferring the beneficial bacteria worked as intended.>
Any advise on a better way
<See above and see http://www.wetwebmedia.com/movelvstkfaqs.htm for other opinions.>
I have been talking to a guy at the shop about the Dragon eel with the Zebra eel and he said give it a go and if I see any aggression remove one but im
still not sure. Anyway this combo could work?
<See last emails. I would not try. How often do you intend to ask this question to get the very same answer from me? You won't get a "Do it" from me. Period.>
Any fish you recommend to go with these eels and in this size tank?
<Since I cannot recommend the combination of the eels, I cannot recommend adding anything else to this combo. The Zebra moray is compatible with a lot of peaceful fishes, the Dragon Eel only with large fishes that can stand their ground such as groupers or a second Dragon eel (see last emails).>
Thank you for your time Callum :) I love your website I have been reading it since I started my Marine aquarium keep up the good work :)
<I'm glad you like it! Cheers, Marco.>
re: eels; I like to move it... switching tanks - 11/03/10
Hello Marco
<Hi Cullum.>
OK but do you recommend me putting the fish in strait away after the tank is set up as this is my only option.
<Better than being in a bucket. I'd transfer them when the cloudiness is gone. As noted earlier a skimmer would be a good item in this situation, because it will add oxygen and remove some of the waste, which will be set free during the move of the rocks and possibly sand/gravel. A move like yours can be done, even if other options like cycling the new tank first for a couple of weeks are better. Just avoid transferring too much dirty sand/gravel, avoid too much dirty water and keep the filter and rock bacteria alive.>
What kind of size bucket do you recommend for a Zebra eel, Sailfin tang, Yellow tang and a Valentini puffer (sorry for spelling)
<The bigger, the better. A good old 6 gallon salt bucket would be my minimum per fish for about 6 hours, but if you have bigger containers available use them. You'll need additional space for the rocks. Keep the buckets well aerated and covered. Don't feed the fish one day before the move.>
I don't think my LFS or my friends can keep my 28inch Zebra moray in one of their tanks :) but if necessary I will ask So how much do you recommend me transferring over ( water )
<If the water is clean (not probable in a FO tank) and shows nitrates
<5ppm you can transfer most of it, If the water is polluted (nitrates>20 ppm) I'd transfer as little as possible. The filter and the rocks contain the bacteria, the filter and surface bacteria need to survive the move, the water is not so important.>
Sorry about asking about the Dragon eel again Thanks Callum
<Cheers, Marco.>
Re: eels 11/4/10

Hello Marco :)
OMG the questions never end :) sorry once again Should I put a heater in the bucket ?
<Yes, but don't let it get too hot.>
Also you said about keeping the bacteria alive how would I do this?
<Simply by having the filter running. Don't clean it during the move... wait at least a week.>
Could this create a ammonia spike?
<If you kill the filter bacteria by turning the filter off for a few hours or by cleaning it this could cause an ammonia spike.>
Would Nutrafin cycle be a good idea to use because it says it has live bacteria?
<I'd rather rely on the bacteria in your filter and on the rocks (don't let the rocks dry). You can add a live bacteria product if you want, but I do not think you need to.>
I'm just really worried about this move and can't have a safe state of mind without your expertise
<So far you sound quite well prepared.>
Thank you so much
<Welcome. Marco.>
Re: dragon moray and zebra moray :) Chapter 27 -- 11/7/10

Hello Marco :) Again
Now I am thinking of getting a Snowflake moray for my aquarium as the Dragon eel is unsuitable. Will this be ok?
<Most likely it should get along fine with all of your fishes. See here http://www.wetwebmedia.com/snowflakemoray.htm and in the linked FAQs.>
And how fast do Zebra eels grow because mine has grown like 18inch in 9 months. Is this normal?
<Very fast for a Zebra eel.>
I checked his length today and he's about 3ft and when I got him he was 18 inch. I saw a Dragon moray in the shop today and it was beautiful and scary at the same time. Still its not really worth the hassle with my tank and all and I couldn't bare it if it died £400-£1000 down the drain. Thank you for your time :) again Callum
<Welcome. Marco.>
Re: dragon moray and zebra moray :) Chatting more 11/10/10

Hello Marco
<Hi Callum.>
I am planning on a eel but am not sure which one yet so.
I can't upgrade my tank for about a year now so if I only had a puffer and a tang in a 80 gallon tank with the 2 eels would this be ok for a while.
<I'd wait for the second eel until an upgrade is possible.>
Thank you for your time
Callum :)
<No problem. Marco.>
Re: dragon moray and zebra moray :)
Thank you for the advice but would this be possible or would a fish end up dead
<Overpopulated tanks often adjust the number of their inhabitants to the available space over time... If you put too much fish in there, your fish are going to suffer, possibly one or more might get sick and die. Your 80 gallon tank is full in my opinion... a large eel, a medium sized to large tang and a puffer are already pushing it. Therefore, I'd stop adding more until an upgrade is possible for the sake of your current pets.>
Thank you for your time
Callum :)
<Cheers, Marco.>

I like to move it... switching tanks... and some eel tank mates II - 11/03/10
I am really sorry for asking so many questions but I really need advice.
<No problem at all.>
By the way I have a protein skimmer rated for 180 gallon I think that has been running on my 4ft aquarium for a year and a bit without fault.
<Very good . This will make the move much easier for the fishes.>
My tank water is really clean with under 5 nitrates and sometimes 0 !!!!! :) which is really cool
<In this case you can transfer all of your clean water into the new tank.>
I think that I'm not going to get the Dragon eel so do you recommend any other eels? I appreciate your advice I love my zebra eel too much :)
<There is quite a number of medium sized semi-aggressive eels, which probably will get along with a Zebra eel and your tangs and puffer: Most Echidna spp. would suit well such as Snowflake eel (E. nebulosa), Chainlink (E. catenata), Barred moray (E. polyzona). Also some members of the Gymnothorax genus such as: Goldentail eel (G. miliaris) and the White eye morays (G. thyrsoideus and G. griseus). Quite a list to choose from. Even a Jewel moray (M. lentiginosa) should work with the Zebra eel, but the other fishes may not be totally safe.>
I'll attach some pics of him now and one cool pic of my puffer :) He's called THE KRAKEN :) Thank you for your time
<Thanks for the pictures. Look great!>
Once again Callum :)
<Cheers, Marco.>

Japanese Dragon Eel and clown trigger. 9/14/10
<Hello Kellvin.>
My fish store is bringing in a Japanese Dragon Eel for me. 25-30cm.
Currently I have a show Clown Triggerfish 25cm and a Banded eel and some grouper. Can the dragon eel be kept together?
<Nothing I would recommend.>
Lastly, can dragon eel tolerate Seachem Cupramine?
<Although it might not die instantly, no moray eel should be brought into contact with copper containing products of any sort.>
Thank you with God Bless. Kellvin.
<Cheers, Marco.>
Re: Japanese Dragon Eel and clown trigger.
Japanese Dragon Eel and clown trigger II, 09/15/10

Hi Marco,
<Hello Kelvin.>
Thank you for your quick respond. You mean that the Dragon eel will attack the groupers 15cm to 20cm and the trigger? Thank you very much.
<I rather see problems with the banded eel in the long run, which may/will get eaten as soon as the Dragon eel is able to. Groupers of adequate size are generally better tank mates for eels than triggers. They often
accompany eels in the wild, the two even hunt together. In addition, a Clown trigger of 25 cm can pose a severe threat to a young (25-30 cm) dragon eel. Therefore, I consider the fish community you asked about as not so ideal. This does not mean it won't work in every case, but implies that the chances are not too high. Consequently, I won't recommend it.>
Regards Kellvin
<Cheers, Marco.>
Re: Japanese Dragon Eel and clown trigger.
Hi Marco,
<Hello Kellvin.>
Oops I forgot to ask you, can I add my Clown Trigger of 25cm on my 300g tank consist of angelfish average size of 6-10 inches? Thank you.
<Please read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/clntrigart.htm. Younger Clown trigger can often be kept with various larger fishes, but once grown many if not most of them become rather aggressive towards their tank mates.
Bob put it this way: "almost always becomes something of a total terror with growth/age". Consider this when putting the trigger with other fishes.
Regards Kellvin
<Cheers, Marco.>
Re: Japanese Dragon Eel (comp.) and clown trigger. -- 09/25/10

Hi Marco,
<Hello Kellvin>
It's me again. Sorry for popping you so much question.
<No problem.>
I have had my Japanese Dragon eel, it is only 20-25cm.
I had taken your advice seriously and sold off all my large groupers and clown trigger. Currently in the Japanese eel tank, I have a pair of 6-7 inches Meredith angelfish, a Six barred angel, a Queen angel, a French angel and a Koran angelfish.
<Should work as long as your eel is so small, but an adult Dragon Eel (in about 1-2 years) can pose a problem even to large angels.>
All are about 6-7 inches too. The Japanese eel did not bother them like wise. I have a Banded eel (Echidna polyzona) maybe 3-5cm larger than the eel.
<E. polyzona is relatively harmless ('Snowflake Eel league'), another banded eel, Gymnothorax rueppellii (also called yellow head) would be a different story.>
I am afraid that it will attack my Dragon eel, what do you think?
<If they have enough caves (which is essential when trying to keep several morays together) they should get along, sometimes some small fight occur at the beginning. So, I'd monitor their first meetings and feedings equipped with a net. However, since the Enchelycore pardalis (Dragon Eel) gets much larger and more aggressive than its cousin, it will endanger the banded eel at some point in time. Remember, with about 3 feet total length expected the Dragon Eel will become a large predator.>
And I have a Miniata grouper (Cephalopholis miniata ), a black saddled coral grouper (Plectropomus laevis) and a Threadfin Snapper (Symphorichthys spilurus) all of them were 5-6 inches respectively. Can I mixed them with the baby Dragon eel? Please kindly advice.
<I'd let the Eel grow a few (2-3) more inches to be on the safe side. In a large system (>>500 gallons) they might even be long term compatible with your Eel.>
Thank you
Regards Kellvin
<Cheers, Marco.>

Re: Japanese Dragon Eel and clown trigger. 9/26/10

Hi Marco,
Thank you very much. I had learnt a lot from you.
<You are welcome!>
Regards Kellvin.
<Very colorful specimen. Cheers, Marco.>

Japanese Dragon Eel and clown trigger.; now angelfish with Cryptocaryon - 06/10/10
Hi Marco,
<Hello Kellvin.>
It is me again. My angelfish is infested with Ick. I can't dose any copper or medication because of the Japanese Dragon eel in there. What can I do? Please advice me. Thank You.
<Separate them (for at least four weeks until the last symptoms have disappeared) and treat the angelfish (as well as all other non-eel tank mates) in another tank. See here (and in the linked FAQs to learn about this disease and its treatments: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/ichartmar.htm). A healthy eel is quite unlikely to become a host (blood toxins, toxic mucous).>
<Good luck. Marco.>
Re: Japanese Dragon Eel and clown trigger.
Japanese Dragon Eel and clown trigger.; now angelfish with flukes - 10/09/10

Hi Marco,
<Hello Kellvin>
My angelfish have no Ick as mention previously. In fact they are flukes instead.
<How can one confuse these two diseases? See http://www.wetwebmedia.com/parasiti.htm, Trematodes (also called flukes) mostly occur only on freshly imported fishes.>
So I am going to treat it with Praziquantel. Can dragon eels withstand this medication?
<Eels have been treated successfully with Praziquantel. However, to avoid negative consequences on the small and possibly larger invertebrate life within the tank, I'd definitely treat in a separate hospital tank. Cheers, Marco.>

Multiple Dragon Moray Tank 03/05/09 Hey crew, <Hi Joe.> I assume this will go to Marco. Hey bud, hope all is well. <Sure, everything's fine. Thanks.> After speaking with you in the past about a Tesselata tank I think I have officially given up on keeping one of these monsters, just can't justify that big of a tank and those huge water changes for just the single eel. So I'm writing today to inquire about my plan B. I'm considering this plan in my existing 240g or downsizing to a 180g (preferred). Can a Dragon Moray (Enchelycore pardalis) and a Brazilian Horned aka Whitespot Moray (Muraena pavonina) be kept together in a 180g? <In terms of water pollution, space required: yes, but with regard to their character this can become problematic. Almost all M. pavonina I had with other eels became aggressive towards their tank mates including morays at some point. The E. pardalis can be quite comparable in the long run... or stay quite peaceful.... hit and miss.> I'm thinking of these 2 eels and one display fish (maybe a Queen or Emperor Angel) <May be attacked, interpreted as a big piece of food, may not be able to hide from the morays. Probably should placed in before the morays to become dominant while the eels are still freshmen.> along with a variety of Damsels/Chromis/Clowns for activity/food/color. Think this is a feasible tank? <Possible... but you should be prepared that one eel may have to be removed at some point. Both should have the same size and be put into the tank together. Lots of caves will also help to reduce territorial behaviour.> I would of course have a HUGE skimmer <Yes.> and wet/dry on it. <Not necessary in my opinion, I'd rather invest into good live rock and power heads.> Thanks for any thoughts or ideas or better main fish for a tank like this. <What you plan can be done... may fail... will definitely depend on the character of the two eels. Other moray combinations have higher chances for success: Zebra eel, Snowflake eel, Banded moray (E. polyzona), Mexican dragon (M. lentiginosa), Chainlink, Goldentail, White eyed morays (G. thyrsoideus and griseus) are easier choices that can be kept together. A divider would be another visually less attractive option or limiting yourself to just one of the desired species (one specimen or a mated pair).> Joe
<Cheers, Marco.>

Dragon Eel is slipping away -- 2/21/09 I have had an 18-20 inch Dragon Eel for 6 years. He's always been blind as a bat but is otherwise a hearty eater, healthy as a horse. He is of course beautiful, and they are no longer exporting this fish from Japan so he's essentially irreplaceable. Tank is 240 gallons and is kept clean, and is professionally serviced every month. Water quality has remained good throughout (I am a big believer in over- filtering a tank). He has survived a very wide range of tankmates. <And eaten some likely> About 4 months ago the tank had to be moved from a location about 7 miles away to its current locale. The only 2 fish that came along with the eel were a porcupine puffer (about 10 inches) and a Harlequin Tusk (5 inches). Not a lot of fish for a big tank, but hey, the economy. Since the move, the eel lost its appetite, eating only occasionally. Diet includes prawn, silversides, and "Variety Supreme" (or as we call them, "gumdrops"). <Mmm... not what I would use... Do you supplement, add vitamins, HUFAs?> I chalked his loss of appetite up to stress related to the move, since he otherwise exhibited no symptoms. But then about 6 weeks ago one of the 2 heaters in the tank burned out and the tank got a little cool for a few days (about 8 degrees F below normal). He stopped eating altogether and started to experience some sort of seizures. Once the heater was replaced he seemed to improve a bit (he finally moved back to his hidey-hole for a couple days, for example) but has demonstrated what I can only call neurological deficiency ever since, having trouble swimming, not eating at all, and occasionally hanging out upside down. <Bad> Now, 6 weeks later, he stall won't eat, he lies upside down in the middle of the tank. His breathing seems labored. He has lost lots of weight. But otherwise, he is asymptomatic--no obvious disease, no sores, no color change apart from being slightly paler -- nothing. Just starving and wasting away. I am contemplating euthanasia at this point. <Mmm, not quite yet> I don't have a sick tank or the budget to buy one, really, unless I believed there was a really great chance of it being successful. Do you foresee any hope at this point or should I admit the inevitable and put the fish down? Or is there something obvious I have missed? Thanks for your consideration, Brian Maffitt <Look into one of the commercial "appetite stimulants" sold in the trade... Selcon, Seachem's "Garlic Guard"... and raise the temperature to 82-84 F.... This and other Muraenids can recover from long bouts of non-feeding. Bob Fenner>

Re: Dragon Eel is slipping away 2/21/09
Thanks so much for your response. A follow-up--he has a white curling emission coming from the opening in his midsection, is could possibly be a worm, or maybe he's just pooping? I could send a picture if it would be useful.
<Would be. B>

This is fecal material... I would force feed this animal... See WWM re if you are unfamiliar. BobF. 2/22/09

Parasitic worms I need some help! My Hawaiian Dragon Eel stopped eating. I notice that he has thin, tan worms all over his body. The worms are about an inch in size. The part that doesn't hook into the eel ends in a point. Please tell me what I can do to treat this. I know eels are sensitive to many forms of treatment. He is a full size eel. Thanks so much for any advice you can give. Kelly <Mmm, need to have a definitive identification of these worms... to the phylum level. I suspect they're flukes of some sort, and could be treated with an organophosphate. I suggest a pH-adjusted freshwater dip (that will likely result in a bunch "letting go" for microscopic exam.) at this point. Be careful with netting the specimen and keep the dip tank covered and heavily aerated during this procedure. The dip by itself will not effect a cure... as the worms are likely of a type that have direct development and will still be present in various stages in the main tank when/if you return the eel. Bob Fenner>
Re: Parasitic worms
Hi Bob, <Hi Kelly> Thanks for your response. I did do the freshwater dip. It took 18 minutes for the leeches to let go. (not die, just let go). Yes, I did say leeches. I took some of the specimens to an aquarium today. I was told that they were leeches. <Easy to see with some magnification (and specimens!)> Unfortunately, these leeches like to live in the substrate. I had 200 pounds of sand and crushed coral in my tank. Well, with some help, I actually removed all the substrate and bought more live rock. The substrate is totally infected with these leeches. Just looking at them makes my skin crawl. I am treating the substrate with Clout in a separate container. <This should "do it"> There are no more of these leeches visible in the tank. Although, he does have two of the leeches on him. Compared to the hundred that were all over him yesterday, I consider this a huge accomplishment. Once the eel settles down and does not appear so stressed, I will try to pick off the two remaining leeches. This has been a very long project, but is well worth the effort to save this beautiful eel. <Yes> We have a Titan trigger fish with the eel. She was sick in the past and had to be quarantined. We now think she was being infected by the leeches as well. Since last night when we gave the eel a freshwater dip, the Titan has been extremely protective of the eel. She lies right beside him. If I am working in the tank near to the eel, she goes completely ballistic. I have to say a full size Titan trigger and full size Hawaiian dragon eel are a nice match. Although, I would not add anything else with them. Take care Bob. Kelly <Thank you for the progress report. Bob Fenner>

Dragon Eel Hi Bob, I have a 75 gallon FO aquarium that is currently stocked with: 4" Naso Tang 3" Panther Grouper 4" Foxface 3" Volitans Lion 3" Picasso Trigger 2" Tomato Clown I would like to add a Dragon Eel (Muraena pardalis) to my tank. <Yikes... in a 75 gallon system? Sorry to state, your system is already going to be overcrowded with modest growth of what you already have...> They are a bit pricey so I wanted to seek the advice of a professional before I made the purchase. Would this overload my tank?. <Definitely> I have a large wet/dry filter and protein skimmer. Is the eel compatible with my other fish? <It would likely eat the Clown> Will the eel be aggressive to me when I clean the tank? <Not common. This is one of the more "peaceful" fish-eating Moray species. Unfortunately it (and some of your other livestock) need larger quarters. Bob Fenner> Thank you for your help. Jim, Logan, UT

Eels Hi, <Good morning, PF here in the bright and early, at least by my standards...> I am purchasing that book I have already ordered it. <I'm assuming Michael's book on sharks and rays.> I know a lot about epaulettes but no where can I find information on how well they do with eels, in particular a Hawaiian Dragon Eel or a Tesselata Eel. <Both eels are piscivorous, and if there is a substantial size difference, I imagine one would eat the other. That said, Tesselata eels reach almost 6' in length, that's a lot of eel. Hawaiian Dragon eels reach about 32" - 1/2 the length. Don't forget the square/cube law: double the size, 4X the mass. > I have read everything on your website about sharks and almost everything about eels but I didn't find any information on Hawaiian Dragon Eels or Tesselata Eels. <I would recommend you read Scott Michael's Reef Fishes Vol 1, there's an extensive section on eels.> I also am looking into the blue dot stingrays. I am not necessarily getting an eel or a stingray but I am definitely getting the sharks. I have read numerous books on marine aquariums that included information about sharks. I have also contacted the aquarium about epaulettes. I am smart enough to know not to get any kind of shark that is sharky-looking, like a nurse, lemon, white tip, leopard, shovelnose, or hammerheads, which are available from time to time. <Good for you, I can't believe someone would try to keep a hammerhead, well, actually, sadly I can believe that.> I have read lots of information about the sharks but I cannot find any information on how they behave with the Hawaiian Dragon Eels or Tesselata Eels or the blue dot stingrays. <The sting rays fair poorly in captivity, and need a very different setup than either the Epaulette or the Hawaiian Dragon eel - the ray needs a large, sandy area, while the shark and eel need rock work. For the sake of the ray (not to mention your wallet) leave it in the ocean, or go see one at a public aquarium.> So I need to know if they can all be housed together or with just an eel or just a stingray and sharks? <Think I already answered that one.> I also need to know some information about the Hawaiian Dragon Eel such as his behavior, what it eats, and if it is hardy? <It's an aggressive piscivore, like all eels prone to carpet surfing, and yes they are hardy animals. They are also known for going on hunger strikes. Do pick up and read Michael's book.> I also need to know if the sea life I listed above are compatible with a woebegone? <Not in my opinion. The woebegone gets over 10' long and is no more appropriate to keep than the hammerhead.> I know it is compatible with an Epaulette but I don't know if it is compatible with the other sea life I listed. Please help me. Thank you very much. Sincerely, Versusdude320 <Well, I hope this helps. Please do some more reading and research before making any final decisions. Have a good day, PF

Avoiding Reef Jerky Dear WWM Crew, <Scott F. at the keyboard tonight!> I am finally ready to stock my 437 gallon (80"x36"x36") Acrylic Tank with two Hawaiian Dragon Moray Eels, in a reef type environment. The tank has two openings each measuring 16"x22". My concern is whether to leave these openings uncovered in order to enhance air exchange or cover them with acrylic panels to make the tank "eel proof", as well as control evaporation. Lighting initially will be a 6 foot custom Sealife ABS Fixture with four 96W P.C.'s. The tank is plumbed to a 150 gallon open sump and connected to a large Aqua Medic Protein Skimmer. I would appreciate your advise on whether or not to cover the tank openings. Thanks, Ron Well, Ron, as you have surmised, Morays can slither out and around just about any form of confinement, if they feel frisky. I've even seen them many times, when I was fishing, slither right out of the water to eat fish that we were cleaning on the rocks - an amazing sight to see! I'd opt for a cover of some sort- either the factory supplied acrylic slot covers, or a finer eggcrate over the openings. Either way, you do want to secure them, or they can definitely become "reef jerky"! Regards, Scott F>

Tesselata Moray 9/8/05 Hi, I was wondering if you could give me some guidance, I'm looking to have a custom tank built for a Tesselata Moray eel, would 60" x 30" x 30" be large enough. I'm planning to keep the eel on his own, with plenty of hiding places. Also as the tank is going to look pretty empty until he has reached maturity, how quickly to they grow if fed daily, and how active are they through the daytime. Thanks Kev >>>Greetings! That tank should be fine for quite some time. Whether or not it will be appropriate as a PERMANENT home is open to debate. This is due to the eventual size of the animal in question. Moral eels are very sedate though, and don't need much swimming room. Even still, I'd say you're on the edge here. I've seen adult specimens in captivity, and they are quite large. I'd shoot for a 72" tank if possible. Growth rate is tough for me to pin down, depends on feeding regime and frequency of water changes really. I'd say you'd be looking at an 50" animal in about 2-3 years though. Hope this helps. Jim<<<

Substrate for Dragon Eel/Freshwater Top Off mix-up - 3/22/07 Thank you all in the process of getting my aquarium off and running. I have learned so much since I stumbled across this web site 1 month ago. <No problem friend, that's why we're here. Glad to be of assistance.> I will be starting a 240g (96x24x24). The Hawaiian dragon eel will be my center piece. <Wonderful choice, and an excellent configuration for such.> It will be a FOWLR system with a 90g sump, 250 lbs live rock and a 2-3" live sand bed or crushed coral. Could you please offer me your expert opinion on which type of substrate would be best suited for this system? <A sugar-fine oolitic sand always wins out in my books -- not only is it easier to maintain, I think it just looks better!> would you also recommend a refugium for this setup? <Absolutely, though no reason to add more to the tank -- a section of your sump will happily suffice.> Further more, I was reading the section on specific gravity. Mr. Fenner advises (if I understand the article correct) that one should not refill evaporated salt water with freshwater. <Mmm, no, I do believe this is a misunderstanding on your part. You should always top off evaporate with freshwater.> He advises that one should do a water change when the water level noticeable evaporates. <Which article are you referring to? This seems to counter everything I've ever read from Bob...> So my question would be, is a freshwater top off system necessary? <Depends on your diligence and laziness levels! If you would like the majority of your tank to be blindly run to you, then an auto top off is a worthwhile investment.> When I notice the water level decrease a little should I do a water change? <You should perform a water change regularly on a schedule of maintenance (a good 'rule of thumb' is once a week.)> How much can I expect my tank water to lose over the course of a week? I live in Calgary, Canada and it is very dry. <This all depends on several factors, such as your ambient home temperature, the tank temperature, the lighting scheme used, the type of cover you employ, etc. I would say a safe estimate would be a half a gallon a day, give or take. Again, don't trust this as a set in stone factor, this is entirely determined by your configuration.> My original plan was to buy a auto top off system and use RODI water and do weekly 5% water change. What would you recommend? RODI auto top off and a 5% weekly water change or when the water evaporates a little just do a water change? <Weekly 5-10% water changes, with whatever water top off scheme you choose will be sufficient.> Thank you for your time, Brent <Anytime, Brent. Glad to help. -JustinN>

Hawaiian (I'm here!) Moray Eel, sys. 3/28/07 > Hello all! > Thank you for all your help thus far. You guys must be avoiding my emails because I send them so often. I do not try and waste your time. I do as much research as I can before I bug you with my questions. <Mmm, something wrong here Brent... our mail server keeps returning outgoing to you...> > My first question is, what is the girth of a full grown Hawaiian dragon eel? <Mmm, about the size of your forearm at its thickest> > Second, I will be buying an aquarium that is 96x24x24 (240g). What size of intake and return holes are needed in the overflows to get the proper water movement? I will also be using the Durso standpipes. <This, and much related material is archived here: http://wetwebmedia.com/marsetupindex2.htm Scroll down...> > Third, the aquarium will house a Hawaiian dragon eel as the center piece. All other fish are subject to the eels compatibility. How much water should be turned over in 1 hour? <10-20 times is about right> > Forth, I will be using a 90g sump with a refugium built in. How many gallons should the refugium be? What should be in the refugium for a FOWLR system? <Also posted... see the above index...> > Fifth and final question, I will be employing the use of a Euro-Reef RC250 skimmer. Would you recommend that I put the skimmer in the sump or plumb it externally? <In the sump, first area... with a weir to keep the water level constant, about the right level> Would the Euro-Reef RC250 be an appropriate size for the aquarium? > Thank you very much for all your knowledgeable replies. > Brent <Mmm, I think it will do fine for here. Bob Fenner>

Japanese Fishes. Centropyge interruptus, Enchelycore pardalis sys... 6/30/07 Hello and thank you for your extremely valuable site. I have searched and not found references to my questions. I'm a long time owner of a 200g reef setup and have learned many lessons first-hand and from sites like yours. I'm now embarking on remodeling my house around my dream setup. A 500g reef tank and a 170g eel tank (one specimen). <How nice!> I have one question that affects both tanks. I would very much like to keep a Centropyge interruptus in my reef tank. Also, I have planned the eel tank entirely around a Japanese Dragon Moray (Enchelycore pardalis). My understanding is that the dragon moray has more stunning color when collected from Japan than Hawaii. <Mmm, yes... or the Marquesas... though both/all "color morphs" are gorgeous...> My LFS has told me that both fish require significantly cooler water than other fish. Is this correct? <Mmm... define "significantly"... My answer is no... both are tropical fishes, both collected in warm water... though the small Centropyge does occur in water in the upper sixties F. in places> I can cool the eel tank easily as it is a separate system, but the angel will be mixed with fish from all over the world. I have not been able to find a recommended temperature range for these animals. Will a warmer tank temp (~80F) affect the viability of the angel? Any suggestions? <Should be fine... You can find, see, infer this information by looking up these species on the site fishbase.org Cheers, and good-life with your projects. Bob Fenner>

Dragon Moray, sys... 1/1/08 Hi, I currently have a 2 year old 400 litre marine aquarium with a 30 watt UV steriliser, Eheim wet/dry canister filter, Fluval external filter, plenty of liverock, and a AquaMedic protein skimmer with a sander ozonizer. Its currently stocked with a 5" sub adult queen angel, a 5" dogface puffer and a 6" great barrier reef harlequin tusk. <Yikes... you're a good candidate for a larger system and much more filtration> I have recently seen a 2ft dragon moray at my LFS, I have been looking for one for 3 years and this is the first one I have seen. <Sometimes there are a few more of these to be found underwater, but most years... in diving a hundred, two hundred times in their geographic distribution I'll maybe see one> The store owner assures me I will not have a problem, but as the fish is 800 pounds ($1600 at current exchange rate) so I would appreciate your advice. <Where's my collecting gear!?> Thanks Kev Manchester, England <A good species, typically good specimens, but... your system is too small as it is, to house the fishes you have at what will be their about full size per the setting. I would go forward with the acquisition if you have a tank at least twice this size. Cheers, Bob Fenner>

Dragon moray compatibility I have an 18" Hawaiian dragon moray in a 65gallon tank. He is doing great and eating well. He is the only fish in the tank with the exception of some damsels I get about once a week for him to chase around and eat. I want to put a fish in there that actually swims around. The tank looks pretty empty most of the time. I really want to put a clown trigger in the tank with him. I know this fish will eventually out grow my 65 but for now the one I saw at my LFS is the perfect size. Too big to be eaten and too small to have an adverse effect on the tank quality. My biggest concern is if the trigger will pick on the eel? It's the eels tank and I don't want to get something that will hurt him. Thanks. <Mmm, well, this tank is already too small for just the Dragon Moray... and it has now been "trained" to eat what comes into its system... I would NOT place a trigger in with this fish. Bob Fenner>

Could you tell us what are the natural predators of the Hawaiian Moray Eel? 1st Grade Report 11/15/05 Aloha, Could you tell us what are the natural predators of the Hawaiian Moray Eel? Any help would be appreciated. Mahalo, George <Mmm, the resident sharks, including the White Tip Reef, Triaenodon obesus mostly. Bob Fenner>

Japanese Dragon eel and Volitans lionfish -- 11/24/2007 Dear WWM crew, <Bill.> Love your website, it's the best website in this hobby for this hobby. <I'm glad you like the site.> I have a 120 gallon tank with about 100 lbs of live rock and a 30 gallon sump with a ETSS skimmer. The lonely inhabitant is a 30" Japanese Dragon eel and since he is always at the bottom of the tank (only comes up when hungry), I think the tank could use another fish so I was thinking about adding a V. lionfish but I'm afraid that it could sting the eel since the eel might get the wrong idea and try to eat it or would he? <Dragon eels (Enchelycore pardalis) can be a real pain for tank mates due to their long teeth, enormous power and fish eating tendencies. Fish large enough to be safe on the other hand may be a threat to the eel. The lionfish is both, a possible threat to the eel and possible prey. I would not risk losing this rare and expensive moray by adding a lion.> Do eels know to stay away from Lionfish? <In the confined space of an aquarium this may not always be possible. Since the eel was in the tank first, it may well interpret the addition of a lion (and most other fish) as feeding. Can work if your eel is exceptionally peaceful, but the risk is too high in my opinion.> So if too risky to put in a Lionfish, what other fish would you suggest? <Mmm'¦ have many eels together with other eels of the same size without major problems, but eels will stay at the bottom, too, and dragon eels are not among the eels seen sharing their caves in the wild'¦ robust groupers work well with many eels, too, but they need a lot of swimming space and I do not think a 120 gallon system could support a half a metre grouper'¦ Tiny fish like some gobies work quite well with large eels. To be honest I would not try another fish in this tank.> I don't want to deal with Angelfishes or Puffers. <I'm sure the dragon would love dealing with them'¦ pricey food and if the puffer puffs possibly a dead moray.> I really love the Sohal tang and the Harlequin tusk but they would have to be huge since the eel can eat filet of fish (6" long x 2" height) which is pretty big, huh? <Oh yes, and they can take out chunks of larger fishes by forming their body into knot.> Thanks for your time, Bill. <Sorry if it is not what you wanted to hear, but personally I would not try tank mates. Rather enjoy the dragon in his own tank. Much more relaxing. Take care, Marco.>
Re: Japanese Dragon eel and Volitans lionfish -11/27/2007
Dear Marco, <Bill.> Thanks for your quick response. <No problem.> I actually forgot to mention that the eel is going to be transferred to the 120 gallon tank so, if that's the case, would I be able to put the Lionfish in 1st and then the eel?? Do you still think it might not be worth the risk to the eel? <Chances are better when you add the Lionfish first. Anyway, I personally would not risk the life of this pricey and wild caught Moray eel. It is possible they will live together peacefully, but the probability is rather small. Chances are good the Eel will kill or eat the Lionfish at some point. Worst case scenario is the Eel is stung to death while killing the Lionfish.> Thanks, Bill. <Welcome. Marco.>

Dragon moray comp. -- 01/04/2008 Happy new year and thanks for the quick response <Happy new year to you, too'¦ please attach earlier e-mails to new queries, so we know who answered your last question.> , I did forget to mention that I am planning to upgrade to a 1000 litre tank within the next 12 months as I love my Queen Angel and I know it could reach 45cm. The only thing stopping me at the moment is the size of my apartment, which will not be an issue for much longer. I would normally wait, but this is the first Dragon Moray I have come across in the UK after 3 - 4 years of searching. Do you think if I improve the filtration as you suggested, I would get away with keeping the eel in my current set up for the short term until I upgrade. If so what upgrades would you recommend? <I would not risk the lives of your beloved Queen Angel, your puffer or any other fishy inhabitants by putting a Dragon Moray in the same tank. Even other morays of similar size often flee from Enchelycore eels. They can take chunks out of large fishes and fold angels to fit them into their stomach.> All my fish are really healthy and I do regular water checks and changes with R.O.. water. I am even considering trading my black coral sea puffer against the eel if you think it would be a risk to keep them all, but I am very reluctant to part with any of my fish as they all work really well together. <The Dragon would be a typical case for a specimen only tank. Not much I can think of -- aside sessile invertebrates, snails, hermits -- is safe with this type of moray, even other Moray Eels may fail.> Thanks, Kev. <Cheers, Marco.>

Moray Eel order of introduction to the new system -- 01/07/2008 I am planning consolidation of White Mouth (18 in) and Hawaiian Dragon (15 in) into the same system. Both are pretty laid back and fed mostly frozen silverside fish. <Usual warning: Feed a varied diet with clam flesh, mussel flesh, prawns, scallops, squid, fish, and add vitamins from time to time. Your eels will probably thank you by having a long and healthy life.> What order would you suggest for moving them? My plan is to move the white mouth first and introducing dragon a week later. <This coincides with my recommendation. Although I would have kept the Enchelycore preferably in its own system, what you suggest has been done successfully at least for some time. Be prepared to remove the White Mouth or the Dragon in the case of severe aggression, though. In addition provide enough hiding spots for both of them and ensure the tank is 150 gallons or larger. It's good the Dragon is slightly smaller. The first nights and the first few feedings will be the most critical moments.> Thank you in advance for your help. Steven <Good luck. Marco.>

Eel on Diver's Den. Muraena ID, comp. 12/20/08 Hi Crew, and Happy Holidays <Hello Kirk.> Diver's Den has had what they term a "West-African Horned Baby Moray Eel" (7 inches, but they have had it over a month), they are saying Muraena melanotis <Correct, I've seen this species on this page.> which if I am not mistaken is typically the Brazilian Dragon Moray? <No, these are mostly Muraena pavonina, a much smaller species. The name Brazilian dragon moray has been used for M. melanotis in the past, too, a typical problem with common names. I am aware there is an awful lot of misinformation on this group of Muraena species (M. pavonina, M. melanotis, M. retifera and even M. lentiginosa) in hobby and even scientific literature (even Michael, Debelius?). Let me know if there are any questions on their ID or taxonomic status, I've dealt with them in detail in the past and still keep M. pavonina.> Do you think this would make a decent community Moray? <Hehe? no. They get well over 1 m and as thick as a strong arm. Really voracious eaters when settled in and healthy. Think of them as being quite similar to G. favagineus or G. undulatus in terms of character, basically its the same ecological niche this species fills in the tropical, mostly Eastern Atlantic.> I have a 8 foot 240 with the following...Sohal Tang, Asfur and Coral Beauty, Sunset Wrasse & Harlequin Tusk, Sargassum & Redtooth Triggers. The Coral Beauty might be a worry as the Eel grows older (I could put him in my other tank), other than that do you think this Eel would work? I have heard favorable results with the Brazilians in "aggressive community set-ups". <With M. melanotis, the possible loss of the sunset wrasse and the coral beauty is obvious. But even the larger fish may be bitten, ripped apart. I cannot completely exclude it might work, it depends a lot on the temper of this specific eel, but I would not be willing to take the risk.> Would I be better off to look for a Jeweled Moray (Muraena lentiginosa)? <Yes, MUCH better.> I am still a little confused on the difference between melanotis and lentiginosa as I have gotten conflicting info. <Yes, I've been there. M. lentiginosa has smaller hornlike rear nasal tubes, its yellow spots are bordered by a dark rim and it has tiny hair like structures on the top of its head. M. melanotis has white spots on a dark grey background and the longer horns are generally more white (due to white spots) than black. If you still feel unsure you, can always send a picture prior to purchase.> Appreciate any help, Kirk <One of my favourite topics. Cheers, Marco.>

Concern for Hawaiian Dragon... beh., hlth. 1/24/07 I purchased a 20" dragon for my LFS and he is currently in QT at the LFS. I go up there almost everyday and feed on Wed and Sat (grouper, snapper, shrimp). I have noticed that sometimes he is only using one pouch to breath. <Not atypical... not a large concern> I have smaller eels at home and they have never done this so I am really concerned. The guys at the LFS don't know a whole lot about eels and I am getting scared. Please Help!!! Thanks D <I would not hold off on buying, moving this Moray on this basis, and would feed it more like twice a week at this size. Bob Fenner>

Dragon Eel I was thinking of buying a Dragon Eel for my 180 FOWLR. What do you think about this eel? Does he get fairly big? Long? Will this type of eel go after everything? I really can't find that much information about this specimen. <Enchelycore pardalis? About three feet maximum length... a fish eater. Will eat what it can/does catch> If I did buy this type of eel will I be able to put my hand in the tank to clean it. <Yes, carefully... watching where the Moray is... keeping your hands out of its way> Your opinion will be greatly appreciated. Could you also give some examples of some other fish that I should be able to place in the tank. I'm assuming that all other fish in the tank should be 7inches or bigger correct. When buying fishes of this I'm sure my selection is limited due to the fact that most fish do poorly when you purchase them at that size. <Hmm, depends on the starting size of the Moray... do read over the selection pieces and Moray cover article posted on the www.wetwebmedia.com site. Bob Fenner>
Re: Dragon Eel
Does this go the same for the Cortez Dragon Eel? Does this eel look similar in color (markings)? Would this be a better choice? Will this eel come out and show itself during the day? <Yes, yes, about the same in choice, and eventually. Bob Fenner>
Cortez Dragon Eel
I was wondering do you think that I could add a 10' Cortez Dragon Eel to my 200 gal FOWLR tank with these following fish already in occupancy? 12' Snowflake Eel, 6' Vlamingi Tang, 5' Pink Tail Trigger, 5' Paddle Fin Wrasse, 5' Twin Spot Coris Wrasse, and 6' Red Coris Wrasse. The Cortez Dragon would be the last addition to the Tank. I know that the current tank size seems like I will be overcrowding the fish but I'm waiting on my 360 gal tank that is on order. I know that Eels hunt at night and was wondering if you think that I would wake up one morning to find my Paddle Fin missing? My Snowflake missing? <Hmm, well, if these fishes were consumed by the Cortez, it would take a couple of years for this to happen. I'm more concerned that the trigger or Coris wrasse might harass this young Muraenid... but give you good odds that this addition will/would work out> I'm looking for an Eel that I could start off small and probably wont be a total terror as it gets larger to my current set-up. I don't want anything like a Zebra moray, but something different that you don't see often in the pet stores. Any suggestions? Already tried looking on the WetWebMedia site and various dealers. Any extra information would be appreciated. <Please look over the section "The Fishwatcher's Guide to... Tropical Eastern Pacific" posted on the WWM site, and consider picking up a copy of this book... need to get them out of the living room. Bob Fenner>

Morays Hi Bob, I am looking at getting a 125 gal tank and was wondering if I could house 2 of the following a Zebra/snowflake/dragon together? <Yes, they can be kept together in such a system> Or what would be allowable tankmates. (clowns with anemones?)>?? <If the anemones were placed high enough in the water column. Likely on live rock> I read the long article on the Zebra moray, is there any literature online about dragon morays? <Don't know... search by the genus name... some on fishbase.org> Kurt <Bob Fenner>

Dragon Eels and Tesselata Eels Hey guys, My first question is about Dragon Eels. How easy are they to keep? <Very much so. Same old challenges of not letting them get out of the tank... getting big, being messy...> I currently have a Chainlink eel and a Blackedge and they are pretty easy to take care of. Both were really easy to switch to frozen food and are fairly fun and personable. Is a dragon the same way? <Yes> Or am I looking at something that is going to be more difficult to care for? My second question is that I have fallen in love with Tesselata eels. I currently have an empty 75 gal that if I got one would go into until he outgrew it. How fast do these guys grow? <Not that quick... a few inches a year... given "just" feeding for maintenance (as opposed to growth, satiation> I have heard that they can be pretty aggressive and I have heard that of the larger morays they are one of the best to keep. Any info on them would help. Thanks for your help, Wade <Please see the various references to the Moray Eels posted on the materials archived re the group on WetWebMedia.com Bob Fenner>

Adding an Eel - Dear Bob, I came upon your site last evening and tried to read as much as I could about this eel. We have a 400 gal tank with: large porcupine puffer, rainbow puffer, 14" French blue angel, 14" gray angel, 5" queen angel, 5" emperor angel.10-12" Naso tang, 4"yellow tang, 6" blue tang, 5" Huma Huma trigger, blue line trigger,7" white face angel, 8" blue ring angel and some small ( 2-3") damsels that were the starters. The guy who takes care of the aquarium and our fish wants to add a dragon eel. I am not sure of it's current size but he says it grows to 18" and is docile. I have read so many conflicting articles, letters and statements that I feel unsure of this addition. Are my current fish going to be in danger?
<Not necessarily, but I think I'd forgo this choice in your situation. While this is a very good looking and docile eel [in eel terms] your tank sounds like it has enough going on without the added bonus of an escape artist in residence. I think you'll also find it won't be exactly cheap. If you can live without this, I would.> Please respond ASAP if you could as he would like our answer by Monday 10/04/04. Thanks for your time! Sincerely, Linda <Cheers, J -- >
- Adding an Eel, Follow-up -
Dear WWM FAQ Crew, Thanks so much for your rapid response! <My pleasure.> I completely agree with you. This was not a specimen I was looking into, but offered by our "tank caretaker". <All the more reason to pass on it.> This is a seasonal home so we are not there much through the winter. I just did not want any problems with the other fish being in danger. I also don't know exactly how large it would get and basically want to keep the "peace" in my aquarium! <You can expect the Dragon eel to make it to about two feet.> Thanks for your quick reply, I really appreciate it. Will stay tuned to your wonderful and informative site! Sincerely, Linda <Cheers, J -- >
Re: Tesselata Moray in a 60" x 30" x 30" tank 9/11/05
Thanks for the quick response, In light of your opinion I have decided to reconsider, my LFS also say the Tesselata Moray in their experience is the most aggressive Moray. Would a Dragon Eel be more suitable? and if so could I pair it with a Lion fish?. I have contacted my LFS in England, and they say they could source me a dragon eel in 3-4 weeks for 600 -700 English pounds, would you say this is a fair price? (Tank size 60" x 30" x 30") >>>Hello again, I'd say that is expensive, but about what I'm used to seeing nowadays for that animal. I paid $100 for mine (roughly 200 pounds?) 10 years ago. They are a better choice in the size department for sure given your tank size. How about a zebra moray, a dragon moray, and a Mexican dragon? You could put all three in a tank that size. He should be fine with a lion fish. Cheers Jim<<<

Mexican dragon eel 10/21/05 Hi, I've wanted to setup a saltwater tank for many years and was given a 55 gallon tank by a friend so I decided to jump in. I've always wanted eels so I've been reading everything I could find and came across your web site. Today I came across an eel that I really liked and was informed by the owner that it was a Mexican dragon eel. My questions are, is a 55 gal tank big enough for this eel and say a lionfish? <Mmm, no... not even just for this species of eel... needs at least twice this volume> Is this type of eel hard to find normally and usually expensive, because I know Hawaiian Dragon eels are. <Is about the same retail in most places in the world... a bit cheaper closer to the source> And lastly how must live rock/and what type of filtration should I go with? <Please read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/morays.htm and the linked files above> A friend is going to give me a wet/dry system that he was going to use on a 120 gal tank and I was looking at an Aqua C Remora hang on protein skimmer. Is the wet/dry system needed for just these two fish? Any help would be appreciated. Thank you Larry <Please read on WWM re wet-dries, marine filtration... Bob Fenner>

Moray Eel Species Only tank for a 75g suggestions 12/28/07 <Hello Joe> I had been planning on making my now 75g grow out tank as a species only tank for a prized Japanese Dragon Moray eel. I know this eel max's out at 3' so I'm a little concerned that the tank may be too small even if he is the only one in it. If it is too small for a DME what size eel should I be shopping for to place in a 75g species only tank and do you have any good suggestions? <This tank should be fine for the eel as it will spend a majority of its time in a cluster of live rock waiting to ambush some prey. The main points of concern are not the 75g tank size which is the smallest tank I would use, but that water parameters are kept as constant and close to Natural Sea water (NSW) as possible. Keeping Nitrates and Phosphates as low as possible too will aid in the long term survival of this animal. Finally, feeding it appropriate foods is also very important. Train the eel to take frozen Saltwater Fish (as Freshwater fish will be too fatty) and thawed frozen shrimp from the grocery store. These are much cheaper than aquarium prepared frozen foods for predatory fish) Frozen foods are best as they will limit any introduction of parasite or disease that live foods could introduce. Hope this helps-Rich...aka...Mr. Firemouth> Thanks Joe

Re: Green Moray Eel, now Gymnothorax castaneus (Panamic green), sel. - 04/14/08 Hey Marco, <Hi.> Yes I do really like Gymnothorax castaneus as well but heard they were horribly shy and hide all the time so I took them off my list. Have you had any experience with them? <Not from the aquarium trade, it's not imported over here so far. <Germany> I strongly doubt it is generally much shier than G. funebris given how many photographs of it in nature exist, and how often they are seen by divers. This is among the top predators in the rocky reefs of its distribution with not many enemies as adults. I'd expect exactly the same as with G. funebris: The young often hiding, but the adults quite outgoing and curious. These two species are closely related.> I have a Japanese dragon eel in one of my tanks and they say they can be shy as well but he's always out and a bout and one of the least shy eels I've ever owned so guess just comes down to the individual. <Exactly. There are general statements possible and published about each species, but not all moray individuals seem to read what we write.> I sent a picture of my dragon eel with his purple Rhinopias roommate cause you seem to be a pretty big eel nut like me lol. <How did you come to this conclusion? Mmm'¦ looking around you may be right. Thanks for sharing the picture!> Anyways thanks again for all the advice always like to have all the info before I start a new tank. <Very good. Cheers, Marco.>

Expensive tastes! RMF

Moray ID 9/14/03 Greetings, I was wondering if you could help me with a Moray eel Id. The animal in question is shaped much like a Dragon Moray. The pattern of the animal is chocolate to black with nice sized white pearl circles all over the body. The eel also has a pair of horns much like that of a Dragon Moray, and the head is elongated. Overall the animal looks much like a Dragon Moray without the spectacular coloring. I have searched everywhere and have not seen any photos or descriptions of this animal. Any info. would be of great help. Thank you. Best Regards, Michael Castiglioni <Michael... without a picture, it is nearly impossible for us to say. Let suggest you do a search of fishbase.org using the genus Muraena. I suspect you will fin what you are looking for from this group of horned morays. Anthony>

An expensive Moray Eel Gamble hey guys- I've got a 265g set up for about a week now. There is a sale at my LFS that has a healthy 2ft. Hawaiian dragon moray for $600 (good deal, for me any way). am getting a shipment of 90lbs of live rock in on Tuesday, but if I get the eel, I have to get him tomorrow (before the live rock). is this a hardy fish, do you think he will fare well and survive my tank or is this fish to risky to gamble that money? please let me know your opinions and quick, like I said, I have to act on this tomorrow. thanks, Justin <I caution you to wait here... though this species is tough, it will likely suffer tremendously being placed in such a new system... AND then suffering through live rock curing... better by far to be patient... another such "deal" will come along in time... when your system is well-enough aged and stable. Wait. Bob Fenner>

Dragon eel I looking for a eel that called a dragon eel. My friend said its yellow has a horn on top of it head. If you can tell maybe when I can get this eel from or maybe help me find a location that sell them. I'm in the New York area. Thank you. <Likely Enchelycore pardalis. Please see here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/morays.htm Can be special ordered through LFS or check with The Marine Center (linked at top of page). Bob Fenner>

Sexing Hawaiian Dragon Moray Eels Dear Mr. Fenner, <Hi Ronald> I currently have one Hawaiian Dragon Moray Eel and now have an opportunity to purchase a second specimen. I would most appreciate any information you could provide relative to determining the sex of Dragon Moray Eels as well as breeding information. I recognize that this would be a difficult challenge and am prepared to do whatever is required. I am currently in the process of setting up a 437 gallon tank to hopefully house these two Morays. Your anticipated response is most appreciated. <Have looked through my print references and fishbase.org... No external differences between the sexes. Have seen (rarely) morays in "pairs" (and on occasion more than one, two species in a hole/cave) while diving, but never Enchelycore pardalis. Bob Fenner> Kindest regards, Ronald Allard

Hawaiian dragon eel; searching for information 03/18/07 Hello all!! <Hi Brent. Marco here.> With all of your answers to my previous questions I go into this hobby with a lot of confidence! So thank you for your knowledgeable replies. <You are welcome.> I am starting up a 240g (96x24x24) aquarium. <Nice size.> My fish list is an emperor angel <This fish will get a little large for your system. Search WWM for Pomacanthus imperator. Provided you have a very good filtration and no other large fishes, it may work.>, clown trigger (I am aware of the trigger's tendencies and am financially prepared to move the trigger to another large system) and a snowflake eel. I was browsing over the Internet for different eel species and came across a Hawaiian dragon eel. I tried to find some info in the FAQs about this eel but couldn't find any. Maybe I was not looking in the right places. <Try WWM and also check Fishbase.org. Using the search feature at WWM I stumbled over several posts regarding this species. Also try searching for Enchelychore pardalis.> Would the Hawaiian dragon eel work in the setup I am getting? <If you can remove the trigger just in case and provide high water quality I'd say: yes.> If it does, I would replace the snowflake with the dragon eel. How big do the Hawaiian dragon eels get? <Size is posted. Will get about 1 m.> Are they aggressive? <They are predators that will eat smaller fishes. But be prepared they also may bite larger fishes. In that case you probably will not have any problems finding a new home for him.> Perhaps you would be so kind as to direct me to the proper link that could help me answer these questions? <As noted above please use the search feature>. I am sure that you have answered all of my questions a hundred times before and I don't want to waste your time. Thank you for all your hard work and dedication. Brent. <You are welcome.>

It's A-Moray! Hey Bob, sorry to trouble you but I do have a question that I would like your knowledge to handle. <<Not Bob, but JasonC - Bob is away diving.>> Hopefully I have a Dragon Moray coming in soon for my new 125 it's being kept at the store till I have the tank ready for it. It's from Okinawa, not Hawaiian, is there any difference in care requirements? <<none that I can think of>> My main question is compatibility. What sort of fish would go in with this guy? Will it be possible to keep other large guys < dragon wrasse, Hawaiian black trigger, Volitans lion, large puffers, etc> or will he end up chomping them, and as such being better with large school of Chromis like fish? <<depends on the size of the eel, but the first list - these are tough customers, potentially your best match for an eel neighbor.>> thanks for any help, I'm still amazed you give out such personal service. <<you are quite welcome. Cheers, J -- >>

Re: lionfish/porcupine puffer compatibility Thank you so much for the info! I will have to refrain from getting a lionfish, as beautiful as they are. And I also really appreciate the information on my peppered moray eel -- I've been hunting all over the place for info. One last question -- why doesn't any sell these beautiful eels? Are they rare in captivity or is there something important I should know that would explain their absence in the trade?? <Mainly a "founder effect" likely at work here... Because there is no established market for this species, divers don't collect them... and the Catch-22, people don't order them because of lack of exposure!> He is an easy feeder and isn't real picky (gets a diet of snails, small crabs, shark meat, krill, silversides, beef heart as a treat, scallops, squid, etc...). Thanks again, Bryce. <Folks do go out of their ways (night collecting for instance) for "desired species" of Morays like Dragons... can be found. Bob Fenner>

Large Moray eel Species only tanks - Need an eel expert Large Moray eel Species only tanks -- 01/07/09 Afternoon crew, <Morning Joe.> Over the past several years I have found myself falling in love with Morays more and more... <Happens.> and what's not to love (no sickness, easy to feed, not picky about water, long life, and on and on and on). I currently have a 30" Dragon Moray in a 75g (pic included) with a shoal of yellowbelly damsels (I know not ideal), but he is very happy, as well as a large 30" SFE and 18" Brazilian Golden in a 240 Community tank. Sorry, back to my question at hand..... I want to eventually do one of several tanks, but I'm not sure what is feasible. Need some guidance and recommendations. <No problem, I'm a fellow moray eel fan.> 1. For my other favourite species a Tesselata (I know 6' and killers), Can 1 be kept in these size tanks for life? 240sq (48x48x25) 240g (96x2x24) 375g (96x36x25) 500g (96x48x25) Bigger???? <I'd say the 500g is the minimum. 600-750 would even be better. I've done what you plan in about a 240 gallon and after a few years it's already becoming time to upgrade.> 2. Can multiple Dragon Moray eels or multiple Tesselata Moray eels be kept together in a species only tank if the tank is big enough? If so how many and what size tank? I have personally seen 2 large Tessie's together in a LFS, but not sure if that will work long term. I have also seen videos of multiple dragons in 1 tank, but again not sure if it would work long term. <Yes, for the E. pardalis. Especially in cases where two have been caught and imported together (mated pair), they generally can be kept together. In very large tanks (>800 gallons) even several pairs can work. Just adding a new one to a existing setup is more risky and can result in extensive biting. It's essential to provide a sufficient amount of rock work and caves and I would consider a 240 as the minimum for a pair. The new one should be slightly larger and adding the eel should be combined with a change of decoration. The G. favagineus is more difficult and rarely kept as pairs in home aquariums. In public setups of several 1000 gallons it should be possible to keep a pair. In smaller tanks I would not try this. It's best kept as a single specimen.> 3. Lastly with a Tessy if I wanted to add PVC pipe behind the LR to reduce the chances of him crushing himself when he gets huge how big of a diameter pipe would need to be used, I've yet to see a FULL size adult. <There you go: http://www.kapstadt.org/images/images-13/moray-eel-fish-fisch/moray-eel-muraenen-3g.jpg .> I was guessing 3" PVC but was not sure if that was enough. <Diameter of an adult is greater than 3'. 7' are more adequate. The rocks should be fixed with concrete to avoid them tumbling over again and again.> I like the simplistic approach of pick your favorite species and give him a tank with lots of small & cheap Chromis and Damsels. Easy to feed and care for. I would buy the absolute biggest skimmer and wet/dry I could for this tank and add tons of Live Rock and caves. Thanks for all the great information and wonderful site, hope to see one of you guys up at ThatFishPlace in April for the Spring Open House, I know Anthony has been there several times. Joe <Good luck with your endeavour. It's good you are planning ahead. Cheers, Marco.>

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