Fu Manchu Lionfish - Can Anyone Give Me Any Insight?



So, I picked up a Fu Manchu Lion. I've wanted a lionfish for a long, long time, and while I do prefer the look of a fuzzy lion (or even a zebra), the Fu Manchu is simply a better fit for most of the tanks I'm able to set up at this point. I set up a 10 gallon, barebottom, with cycled rock and cycled filter media, and am going to QT and use this as his holding tank.

I do have a few questions:

I'm thinking about either a 20 high or 25 extra-tall for him long-term. I can't have a tank longer than 24" in this particular spot, so I'm rather limited. That said, I think a 24" tank would be fine for him, and a lot of people seem to agree - I know that some will disagree, though, too, so I'm willing to hear some opinions on tank size. If push comes to shove I could theoretically offer him a 20 long, but it wouldn't be ideal.

I'm currently feeding him table shrimp soaked in Selcon, and ghost shrimp that have been gutloaded with stuff from my freshwater tank. How much should he be eating? So far, he seems to only want a small chunk of shrimp or a single ghost shrimp a day. I'm sure he's still settling in, and he is only about 3" right now, so I imagine he's going to eat a bit more as he gets used to me and the tank. Opinions?

What's the ideal tank for him? I know he's reef-safe, as long as nothing fits into his mouth, but I'm thinking of probably a FOWLR or maybe a FOWLR with a few soft coral, nothing special. I'll probably keep him by himself if I keep him in a small tank, although it's possible I'll eventually try my female clown with him. She's been super aggressive to her male lately, so I'm considering separating them. Just worried about her getting eaten as he grows. That's far off into the future, though.

Does anything spring to mind that I should know? Obviously, avoid getting stung, and try not to net them if you can keep from it. General Saltwater care applies, too. Other than that, though?
  • Moderator


Giving this a bump up for you hope the salty members can help you today


maybe this article can help you


Ideally a 30 inch tank would be best long term, but the good news is that it maxes out around 4 inches (smallest of the lions available) and lions aren't fast swimming fish. As for the diet I believe that lionfish need live prey as part of their regular diet if memory serves me correctly, although they will supplement with things like you mentioned. If you want to put it to the test, I recommend picking up some LRS Reef Frenzy. It offers a clean food source and a buffet of food options to boot. If that doesn't work you may need to switch to some live additions.

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