4 Reasons Behind Your New Clownfish Not Eating And Its Solution

So you’ve brought home a new clownfish. But alas! Your clownfish stopped eating. I understand how frustrating and scary this is, as you don’t want your beloved pet to waste away.

Why are your new clownfish not eating?

A new clownfish might stop eating due to adjusting to the new tank. Also, your fish may not be used to eating pellets or live foods.

The electrolytes present in your tank also may not suit the new fish. Underlying diseases can also cause your fish to stop eating. 

This is only a brief overview of the topic. To learn more about this topic, let’s get down to the main segment!

Why Did Your New Clownfish Stop Eating? 

Unlike other terrestrial animals, it’s difficult to understand exactly what’s wrong with your fish. You must carefully observe your fish and know exactly what’s wrong with them. 

So the loss of appetite can mean a significant problem for your clownfish. But as long as you remain careful and cater to your clownfish’s needs, your clownfish will start eating in no time. 

Now let’s look at all the reasons why your new clownfish is refusing to eat. 

Adjusting to New Tank 

The most likely cause of your new clownfish stopping eating is its transfer to a new tank.

Maybe your clownfish was acquired from the ocean or an aquarium. Either way, its previous setting wasn’t the same as the one you’re providing now. 

This clownfish was probably accustomed to the environment it was previously in. So such a big change all of a sudden can cause stress to a clownfish. As a result, they tend to stop eating. 

A new environment can cause any pet to be stressed. So naturally, a clownfish isn’t comfortable when it’s shifted to a new tank. 

Clownfish also may feel lonely at times. This happens due to being shifted from a place full of fish to an aquarium with none.

However, this shouldn’t be an issue, as clownfish can live alone.


Most new clownfish stop eating when placed in an entirely new environment. So you don’t have to worry about it too much. 

Focus on making your fish feel as comfortable as possible. Keep the water tank in the dark place and give some space to the new fish.

Limit exposure to other fishes by keeping the new clownfish in quarantine. 

Your clownfish can go one without eating for 7 days.

If it still doesn’t eat after 7 days, consult a vet. There might be some underlying issues. 

Not Used to Eating Certain Types of Food

Whether your new clownfish is wild or aquarium-based, its food habits may be different from what you’re providing it now. As a result, it’s refusing to eat this new food. 

There are pellets and flakes designated for clownfish available on the market. Many fish owners use these as it’s quite convenient. 

However, the best possible diet for your clownfish is small live creatures like cyclops, tiny crustaceans, etc. So always try to provide them with that. 


If they are accustomed to dry pellets or flakes, keep giving your clownfish that for the time being.

After it has adjusted to the new environment, it introduces live foods little by little. 

Start to acquire live creatures if you’re feeding your clownfish pebbles when it’s habituated to eating live organisms. 

Imbalance of Electrolytes in Tank 

Sometimes the electrolytes present in your tank may be imbalanced. As a result, it can hurt your fish. 

Different types of fish require different levels of nitrate, phosphate, and other compounds in the tank.

A rise or fall in these levels can cause your fish to lose its appetite. 

These imbalances are often regulated by the anemones present in your water tank. However, if these anemones start to die, this imbalance can’t be resolved.

So you may need to look for dying anemones in the water tank. 


You can find different types of water testing kits on the market. These testing kits detect the number of compounds present inside the tank.

So use these kits to determine if there’s an imbalance of electrolytes in the tank. 

If you see that there’s a rise from the natural number, then change the water in the tank.

If there is a low amount of electrolyte present, put some supplements in the tank. 

Underlying Diseases 

Although diseases are not as common in new clownfish, it’s not impossible. Some fish may suffer from various diseases and infections. 

Sometimes your clownfish can suffer from the black spots disease. These infections can show many symptoms. One of them being the loss of appetite. 


Start to inspect your clownfish carefully. Look for signs of infection. Also, check if it’s showing other symptoms besides the loss of appetite. 

If you suspect that there may be an infection or disease, take your clownfish to a vet immediately. Your vet can properly diagnose your clownfish and see what is wrong with it. 

After diagnosis, your vet may take different treatment plans depending on your clownfish. This will take care of your diseased clownfish. 


Question: How long can my clownfish survive without eating?

Answer: A clownfish usually survive a few days to a week without eating. However, make sure that clownfish are eating once it has been more than 7 days. 

Question: Do clownfish tend to be fussy eaters?

Answer: Generally, clownfish are not fussy eaters. However, when it’s moved to a new environment, it may stop eating for a while due to stress. 

Question: How much should I feed my small clownfish?

Answer: Ideally, you should feed your clownfish around 4-6 pellets each day. As for living food, break the frozen cubes into the size of pellets and feed them. 


With that, we’ve reached the end of this segment. I hope all of your doubts regarding why your new clownfish is not eating have been answered. 

Make sure to treat your new clownfish properly, depending on the problem it’s facing.