Know your fish
Fish are like humans in many ways with their lives revolving around the creation and maintenance of a home, protecting it, putting food on the table and, of course, sex. There’s no better way of avoiding potential issues with changes in behaviour than to know the individual fish concerned and that means researching it before purchase. Is it a species that will change sex and become more territorial? Does it have a reputation for being aggressive and if so, what species of fish does it single out for aggression more than others?
Can you make arrangements for your fish to be fed regularly in your absence if a lack of food is likely to become a problem?
Is your set-up large enough to house a territorial individual of a particular species? Dealers can help here as many will have had feedback from customers regarding the long term behaviour of the fish that they sell. Rather than the single anecdote: ‘It was fine in my aquarium’, they will have their own experiences with a number of individuals to call upon.
Compiling such a wealth of information might seem intimidating, but it can save a heck of a lot of heartache in the long run — as anyone who has tried to catch a Pyjama wrasse in a large reef aquarium will verify!