BTA Appears to be Unhappy

Discussion in 'Invertebrates' started by Nick, Aug 11, 2013.

  1. Nick

    Nick

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    I added a Bubble Tip Anomie to my 3 1/2 year old aquarium two weeks ago. During the first 10 days, it seemed perfectly happy; it hosted one of my tomato clowns, had a healthy appetite and settled in nicely in a spot on the reef.

    In the last 4 or 5 days, I notice that while it responds to light and other stimuli, the tentacles have "deflated" leaving it to look like a big white disc, still firmly attached to the reef.

    Following are my test results:

    Specific Gravity = 1.020: I realize this is a bit low and have begun raising to 1.024.
    PH = 8.2
    Phosphate = 0
    Ammonia = 0
    Nitrates = 10: Currently correcting with water changes.
    Nitrite = 0
    KH = 196.9

    According to the test kit instructions, the KH range should be in the 100-200 ppm range for marine fish and inverts.

    Other Details:

    1. The total tank volume is 25 gallons with the display tank being 20 gallons.

    2. I do a 20% water change weekly. I prepare the water using a 5 stage RODI filter. The water is continually moving via submersible pump with salt mix and buffer added.

    3. I dose the tank with iodine once per week.

    4. Lighting is approximately 4-5 watts per gallon.

    How do my numbers look? Is there something else I should be testing for? I'm feeling a good amount of frustration; this is the second time I'm trying with a BTA and I'd like to enjoy success with it.

    Your feedback is appreciated.

    Thanks in advance.
     
    Nick, Aug 11, 2013
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  2. Nick

    chichimom79 reef junkie

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    Do you have a test kit for iodine? Why are you dosing it?
    It could be the depressed salinity. That's very low. Raise it about .001 per day. What kind of lights are you running and what is your temp? Does your temp fluctuate?
     
    chichimom79, Aug 11, 2013
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  3. Nick

    Nick

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    The LFS told me to dose iodine once per week, so I did. I haven't tested for iodine thinking there was no chance to OD the tank because of the weekly water change. But I have begun to wonder if it is an iodine overdose. I will discontinue the dosing until I can test.

    I did a 20% water change on Friday and before the original posting, I did another 10% without dosing iodine.

    I've begun raising salinity; i'm not sure how it got that low but expect it to be back to normal within the next 3 to 4 days.

    As I stated in my original post, my lighting is 4-5 watts/gal. It is (4) 10k florescent tubes, (2) white and (2) blue.

    my temps range between 78-80 degrees. It has dipped to 76.5 at times but has never gone over 80.

    I appreciate your taking the time to help.

    Nick
     
    Nick, Aug 12, 2013
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  4. Nick

    salt_for_brains Alabama Reefer VIP Member

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    I would shoot for 1.025- 1.026 SG. Is your anemone bleached? I asked b/c you said it looked like a big white disc. If you have compact fluorescent bulbs that isn't very intense lighting for an anemone even though you have 4-5 watts/gal. Tomato clowns can also be pretty rough on an anemone.

    Can you post a pic?
     
    salt_for_brains, Aug 12, 2013
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  5. Nick

    Nick

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    Okay... I certainly can go up to 1.026...

    I'd hate to think that the intensity of the lighting was insufficient; I spent a lot of money on that light fixture. Maybe I can get more intense bulbs?

    I've tried posting a before and after photo.

    lets see what happens.
     

    Attached Files:

    Nick, Aug 12, 2013
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  6. Nick

    salt_for_brains Alabama Reefer VIP Member

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    That is a very bleached anemone. It has lost most of it's zooaxenthella. It takes a lot of time and TLC to get it back healthy but it can be done. Pristine water parameters with minimal fluctuations is a must. If it will eat I would offer very small portions of nutritional meat like PE mysis. It could be bleaching from your water parameters, lighting or both. It is stressed and is expelling its zooaxenthella.

    Does your bulbs plug in on one end or both ends? Compact fluorescent plug in only on one end.
     
    salt_for_brains, Aug 12, 2013
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  7. Nick

    Nick

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    My lights plug in on both ends.

    In my OP, I listed the water test results. Is there something I should be testing for that I currently am not?

    You mention the problem may be stress related due to water parameters. It seems the thing to do would to first be to confirm correct water parameters.

    How much time do I have before time has run out? Is the BTA unhappy or dying?

    Very frustrated.
     
    Nick, Aug 12, 2013
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  8. Nick

    ErinCahir Sausage Wrangler

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    He looks very bleached, but his mouth is closed and he's attached to a rock, so that's a good sign.

    Try feeding him with a tiny squirt of mysis (or comparably sized food) and see if he takes it. It'll be an uphill battle because he wasn't healthy when you got him, but you should be okay.
     
    ErinCahir, Aug 12, 2013
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  9. Nick

    Nick

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    If you look at the "before" picture, that is the condition he was in at the LFS. I had him on hold and observed him for 2 weeks before I took him home. So I don't know that he was unhealthy when I purchased him.

    So to be honest, I don't feel any closer to a game plan in terms of getting it healthy than I did when I first posted. What I have are more questions.

    1. Light: it was suggested the lighting may be a issue. After answering additional questions about lighting, I still don't know if my lighting is adequate or if I need to make a change.

    2. Water quality: I've posted my latest results but I still don't know if my results are acceptable and if there are other things I should be testing for.

    I guess I'm asking: Whats my nursing care plan here?
     
    Nick, Aug 13, 2013
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  10. Nick

    salt_for_brains Alabama Reefer VIP Member

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    It sounds like you have T5 lighting which is way better than compact fluorescent. As far as I can tell from the parameters you posted the nitrates and SG are the only two issues I see for the health of your nem. Continue to do your water changes to try and get the trates closer to 0. Slowly raise your SG to 1.025-26 range. Other than that all you can do is try and feed it small amounts if it will accept it, give it light and try and keep your parameters as stable as possible. It takes months to bring one back from bleaching. Anytime an anemone is transferred it is a stressful event for them. As Erin said, it's mouth is tight and it is still attached so that is good. It appears it is also not hiding from the light so that is good too. I hope this helps and good luck!
     
    salt_for_brains, Aug 13, 2013
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  11. Nick

    chichimom79 reef junkie

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    I did answer you about parameters. Slowly raise your salinity, get your nitrates closer to zero and keep everything including temp as stable as possible.
     
    chichimom79, Aug 13, 2013
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  12. Nick

    Nick

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    Yes... its definitely T5. I purchased it on a recommendation because I wanted a BTA.
     
    Nick, Aug 13, 2013
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  13. Nick

    Nick

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    Yes you did, Chichi. Thanks to you and everyone else who has taken the time to read and respond. I hope that I will have some good news in the not-to-distant future. I will keep everyone posted.
     
    Nick, Aug 13, 2013
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  14. Nick

    Nick

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    Re: BTA Appears to be Unhappy - ** UPDATE **

    Well... I have my nitrates down to around 5 and SG is at 1.026.

    The BTA seems to be bouncing back... as long as the light is out. About an hour or two after the light comes on, the BTA seems to tighten up into a ball. But when the light is out, it seems to relax and open up.

    I'll post pictures soon.

    It appears that the BTA is sensitive to light. What does this indicate?
     
    Nick, Aug 23, 2013
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  15. Nick

    salt_for_brains Alabama Reefer VIP Member

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    Your anemone is bleached and has to build up it's zooxanthella. It is very sensitive to light without it. It takes months to help an anemone recover from bleaching. Just be patient.
     
    salt_for_brains, Aug 23, 2013
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