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Posted By: greg <gregandeileen@juno.com>
Date: Thursday, 15 August 2002, at 10:06 p.m.

I fed the Clowns their favorite food today- the Hikari Carnivore Tabs. The first one hits the water, and here they come!

We have them trained to come to the back right corner of the tank so we can hand-feed them. With the powerhead mounted to the back wall, there is only about a 3" gap to the wall. They crowd into this tight area to get their food.

I have the powerheads set so the tops are about 1/4" underwater. Sometimes, if the food gets away from the Clowns, it is pulled in the current over the top of the powerhead and swept behind the powerfilter outflows. They race under the powerhead to get under the outflows and grab the food before it hits the bottom.

Today, I was feeding the largest Clown, Smiley. Smiley is about 6" long, about 2.5" tall at the center, and very thick and fat. So you can see it is a tight fit when he squeezes into the "feeding spot".

Anyway, I dropped a pellet in near the wall so he could grab it, but he missed it, and it floated over the top of the powerhead, which is about 2" wide. The other two dove under the powerhead to go after it.

Then Smiley did something that blew my mind. He hooked his front fins on the top of the head and did a "pushup", pulling himself on top of the head. The food was just floating off the head, so he lunged for it, out of the water!

It floated off the head and behind the outflows of the powerfilter, so he rotated onto his side and again lunged his head into the very tight spot behund the filter, which sits about 1" off the back wall.

He got the food in his mouth, but now he was stuck, laying on top of the powerhead with his head stuck behind the filter. He laid there and wiggled back and forth for a few seconds, trying to get through the small opening, and finally he got himself upright and shot through the gap, the food still in his mouth.

I was laughing so hard it hurt. He looked like Shamu at the Seaworld show, when Shamu comes up on the deck for food. It was really funny to see- a fat fish stranded on top of a powerhead, unable to get away because he would not let go of the food.

He is no worse for wear. I guess the whole thing is my fault- I let the kids teach them to eat from their fingers. In the beginning they would not come near to eat from mine, but when my one daughter was about 5 she would walk up to the side of the tank, put her face to the glass and the tips of her fingers into the water, and they would come and nibble at her fingers. This was really a sight to see- something I will remember forever. GREG

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