Why do all my Emerald crabs die?

Discussion in 'Invertebrates' started by CMOS, Dec 19, 2010.

  1. CMOS

    CMOS

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    Howdy All,

    I have a pretty nasty infestation of Bubble Algae and have TRIED to combat it with Emerald crabs. The problem is they die within a couple of days max. I've tried to reintroduce them at different times but they just don't last.

    Aren't these critters pretty hardy?

    FYI: Nitrates = 0, Nitrites = 0, Ammonia = 0, PH ~ 8.0-8.2, temp 80F.

    Thoughts?

    CMOS
     
    CMOS, Dec 19, 2010
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  2. CMOS

    bjohanson1234 .........

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    How do you acclimate the crabs?

    Have you ever used a copper based medicine in your tank? Copper is highly toxic to inverts even in very low ammounts

    What kind of water are you using? Tap or RO? Tap water can contain copper and other heavy metals.
     
    bjohanson1234, Dec 19, 2010
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  3. CMOS

    cageburn

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    +1 on the copper. Test for it if your not sure. The best way to get rid of the bubble algae would be to remove all rock, bleach it. Drain the tank and sump completely and start over from scratch. Its a pain in the butt, but it works. If you just leave it, it will get really bad.
     
    cageburn, Dec 19, 2010
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  4. CMOS

    CMOS

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    NEVER on the copper.

    I have a 5-stage RO/DI (FilterGuys) water treatment system with a TDS meter.


    CMOS
     
    CMOS, Dec 19, 2010
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  5. CMOS

    CMOS

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    cage, I honestly don't have the funds to replace all if my live rock. It's not feasible for me to get rid of every rock in my tank.


    CMOS
     
    CMOS, Dec 19, 2010
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  6. CMOS

    bjohanson1234 .........

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    How do you acclimate them?

    Also, what other things do you have in your tank? Anything that might be attacking the emeralds? Such as a mantis that hitched on the rock?
     
    bjohanson1234, Dec 19, 2010
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  7. CMOS

    cageburn

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    dont replace the rock just take it out, bleach it, let it dry, Then put it back in the tank. Drying the rock takes the longest. No need to buy more rock. Dont put the rock back in though until all the water from the system has been drained and replaced. Dry everything with a towel too if you can.
     
    Last edited: Dec 19, 2010
    cageburn, Dec 19, 2010
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  8. CMOS

    CMOS

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    Pardon the ignorance but won't that kill the beneficial micro-organisms in the rock?



    CMOS
     
    CMOS, Dec 19, 2010
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  9. CMOS

    CMOS

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    Acclimation: float, then add 1/2 cup tank water to bag. Repeat twice then in they go.


    Nothing in the tank that could munch on a Emerald. The nastiest thing I have (chuckle) is a Banded Coral shrimp.


    CMOS
     
    CMOS, Dec 19, 2010
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  10. CMOS

    bjohanson1234 .........

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    How long do you take to acclimate?

    What is the salinity of the tank they are coming from and the salinity they are going to?


    I usually take between two and 4 hours to drip acclimate my inverts.
     
    bjohanson1234, Dec 19, 2010
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  11. CMOS

    CMOS

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    Unsure about LFS salinity. Mine is .023-.024.

    Total time - maybe an hour.

    Suggest I do a bucket drip for a few hours?


    CMOS
     
    CMOS, Dec 19, 2010
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  12. CMOS

    Bifferwine I am a girl

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    Before you try taking all the rock out, I'd try a drip acclimation on a couple new emeralds. You may not be giving them enough time to acclimate. Inverts do better if they are acclimated longer than you would for fish.
     
    Bifferwine, Dec 19, 2010
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  13. CMOS

    Bifferwine I am a girl

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    Also, are you sure they are really dead and not just molting? I have 4 emeralds in my tank, which I see about once every 3 or 4 months, because they are never out in the day. When I do see them, it's usually just a little green claw sticking out of a rock and reaching around for food. They can be tough to spot.
     
    Bifferwine, Dec 19, 2010
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  14. CMOS

    CMOS

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    Biffer, that's a fair question. 1) I NEVER see them after a day or two and 2) the BA infestation is not being reduced - and remember this is only a 45 gallon tank. I would suspect that if even ONE were alive, I'd see a difference in the BA.

    Over the last 6 months I have tried to introduce 4 Emerald crabs. (See #1 and #2 above...)



    CMOS
     
    CMOS, Dec 19, 2010
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  15. CMOS

    yote Ceritfied Mantis Hunter Moderator

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    CMOS Try a slower acclimation.And pick out all the bubble algae you can.It may be growing faster than your crabs can eat it.
     
    yote, Dec 20, 2010
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    Piratefish SPS Freak

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    BA is a real pain. When I got my tank it had BA the size of golf balls Im not kidding. When I move it from the guys house i got it from I scrubbed all of the rocks and rinsed with tap water. Well that was in July and its back. I have 7 emerald crabs 3 died. They only seem to eat the BA that is on the smaller side like pea sized or smaller. I have been pulling out the smaller rocks and cleaning them in saltwater and then doing a quick rinse with rodi water, It helps but with in two weeks I am seeing new growth. It only seem to grow where there is little or no coralline. Also I wait until the bubbles get larger and chip or pick them off the rocks. Which I just did before my flatworm dosing the did a water change. Here is some info on it 'Bubble' Alage: Selected Descriptions, Controls and Comments by Horge Cortes-Jorge, Jr. - Reefkeeping.com

    It is a real drag but it doesn't bother me like it did at first. I would like to get a larger tank next year and if that happens I will take out the rock and dry it and start over. I have some really nice pieces that this guy spent a ton of money on and would hate to buy new stuff.
    GOOD LUCK

    Oh drip the crabs longer it works.
     
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2010
    Piratefish, Dec 20, 2010
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  17. CMOS

    CMOS

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    Good responses. Thanks to all.


    CMOS
     
    CMOS, Dec 20, 2010
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  18. CMOS

    Zissou What about my dynamite? VIP Member

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    Some of his suggestions will help:

    [ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MeqtPe3XukM]YouTube - 4 Ways to Remove Bubble Algae From Your Reef Tank[/ame]
     
    Zissou, Dec 20, 2010
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  19. CMOS

    CMOS

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    Ziss,

    I'm tellin ya, I have SO much BA in my tank that it would take a team of surgeons a week to clean it with that method.

    I actually tried a similar method of removal many moons ago but just couldn't get the BA bubbles to come off as my live rock is highly textured. I just can't get at some of this stuff.

    The sad reality is that when the BA first appeared I neglected to attack it right away (new baby in the house) so after a rather lengthy period of time, the tank was pretty highly infected. Right now it's not getting any worse because I'm limiting the MH lighting. I'm hoping, once I get some Emerald crabs stabilized, that the BA will be significantly reduced enough to be considered "manageable".

    Thanks for the video. I did see a couple of things in there that I can try.

    CMOS
     
    CMOS, Dec 20, 2010
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  20. CMOS

    cageburn

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    correct the bleach will kill everything on the rock, but thats not a big problem. the rock will recycle and the bacteria will come back.
     
    cageburn, Dec 20, 2010
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