Do most places have aiptasia?

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Isopod80

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In nearly 30 years of reefing I don't believe I've ever walked into an LFS that didn't have at least some visible aiptasia. Same thing goes for the various diseases. The supply chain in this hobby is honestly pretty filthy and always has been. This is why proper quarantine of all newly acquired specimens is so important.
 

PokeFish

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2 out of 3 LFSs near me have aiptasia. I thought this was just limited to those and a few other stores. I went to California and visited Unique Corals, and they have aiptasia too. So do most LFSs have aiptasia?
my lfs dont have too much
 
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MaxTremors

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2 out of 3 LFSs near me have aiptasia. I thought this was just limited to those and a few other stores. I went to California and visited Unique Corals, and they have aiptasia too. So do most LFSs have aiptasia?
Yes. Unless they meticulously quarantine they’re incoming stock for months, they undoubtedly have aiptasia (and bristle worms, asterinas, mini brittles, etc.). For me, it’s not really an issue, if you inspect before purchasing and deal with any that come up immediately, they don’t become a big problem. They’re just part of reef keeping. I think it’s one of those things along with the other hitchhikers that I mentioned that people have been told are a huge deal and so they’re super paranoid about them, but in reality they’re completely manageable and are easy to deal with if you don’t let them get out of control.

When I was younger and first got into reef tanks, my mother wanted a tank set up at her house, so I set one up for her. I took care of it for like a year but then I moved out of the country, and when I got back a couple years later, the tank was just covered in aiptasia. I mean hundreds if not thousands. But they were kind of pretty in their own way and they didn’t really bother the other few corals in the tank (mushrooms, palys, and a toadstool), and my mom like them, so they stayed. I was kind of a neglected tank, there wasn’t any algae, but there were tons of ‘pests’/hitchhikers, there were tons of worms that were sort of a cross between spaghetti worms and vermetid snails, they were in the sand and had two long flowing tentacles, tons of bristle worms, massive amphipods, just all kinds of microfauna. And it wasn’t an ugly, it was kind of cool tank. Had a leopard wrasse, a clown fish (that was hosted by the mushrooms/aiptasia), a massive and fat lawnmower blenny, and a coral beauty angel. It was the late 90’s and I’m pretty sure it had power compact lighting and a normal output actinic fluorescent bulb (that I don’t think ever got changed), most of the corals were pretty drab back then (I don’t know if was the lighting, just what was being collected, or both, but corals looked nothing like they do now), so the aiptasias didn’t really take away from the other corals.

Anyway, my point is that I know what scan happen if aiptasia are left unchecked, but even with that experience I don’t think these ‘pests’/hitchhikers are as big a deal as a lot of people make them out to be. There’s no need to panic about them, so long as you manage them (which isn’t hard) there’s nothing to worry about. The only way they get out of control is if you do nothing (and over feed, neglect the tank, never do water changes, and top off with dechlorinated tap water). They’re just something we have to manage, and expecting an LFS to be aiptasia free is unrealistic.
 

Darren in Tacoma

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Yes. Unless they meticulously quarantine they’re incoming stock for months, they undoubtedly have aiptasia (and bristle worms, asterinas, mini brittles, etc.). For me, it’s not really an issue, if you inspect before purchasing and deal with any that come up immediately, they don’t become a big problem. They’re just part of reef keeping. I think it’s one of those things along with the other hitchhikers that I mentioned that people have been told are a huge deal and so they’re super paranoid about them, but in reality they’re completely manageable and are easy to deal with if you don’t let them get out of control.

When I was younger and first got into reef tanks, my mother wanted a tank set up at her house, so I set one up for her. I took care of it for like a year but then I moved out of the country, and when I got back a couple years later, the tank was just covered in aiptasia. I mean hundreds if not thousands. But they were kind of pretty in their own way and they didn’t really bother the other few corals in the tank (mushrooms, palys, and a toadstool), and my mom like them, so they stayed. I was kind of a neglected tank, there wasn’t any algae, but there were tons of ‘pests’/hitchhikers, there were tons of worms that were sort of a cross between spaghetti worms and vermetid snails, they were in the sand and had two long flowing tentacles, tons of bristle worms, massive amphipods, just all kinds of microfauna. And it wasn’t an ugly, it was kind of cool tank. Had a leopard wrasse, a clown fish (that was hosted by the mushrooms/aiptasia), a massive and fat lawnmower blenny, and a coral beauty angel. It was the late 90’s and I’m pretty sure it had power compact lighting and a normal output actinic fluorescent bulb (that I don’t think ever got changed), most of the corals were pretty drab back then (I don’t know if was the lighting, just what was being collected, or both, but corals looked nothing like they do now), so the aiptasias didn’t really take away from the other corals.

Anyway, my point is that I know what scan happen if aiptasia are left unchecked, but even with that experience I don’t think these ‘pests’/hitchhikers are as big a deal as a lot of people make them out to be. There’s no need to panic about them, so long as you manage them (which isn’t hard) there’s nothing to worry about. The only way they get out of control is if you do nothing (and over feed, neglect the tank, never do water changes, and top off with dechlorinated tap water). They’re just something we have to manage, and expecting an LFS to be aiptasia free is unrealistic.
That is reef keeping in a nutshell.
 

Frostblitz20

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It’s impossible to avoid it. I gotton it off frags from many of the main online sellers as well. It’s hard to see if a frag gets seeded with it until it grows out. The only seller I’m aware of that doesn’t have anything is Jason fox and that’s because he does this crazy 4 tank QT method and it takes months to make it into his stock for growing out of QT phases.
 

reefiniteasy

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Here is a picture from a display tank in one of the big three shops here in Orlando. It’s everywhere.

710699CC-1A0B-44EF-AB6A-7743EF186375.jpeg
 
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