Hammer and Frogspawn acting up

coraline23

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Newbie-ish here! I have frogspawn that was very full and open for the first couple of months of owning. After a while, it’s tentacles have receded and are no longer as full and fluffy looking as before. This has been going on for months now. Additionally, I have a hammer that has started showing it’s skeleton in one place just the last few days. The hammer next to it seems to be fine.
Water parameters are all stable. Don’t currently have a way to test Mg and Calcium at home but LFS tested last week and all was in “perfect” parameters.
hammer is sitting in the middle of the 40 breeder with 2 ai primes. Help! It’s my favorite piece!

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vetteguy53081

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These do best at lower third of tank under moderate light and water flow
Temp 77-79
Ph 8.1-8.3
Salinity. 1.025
Nitrate < .4
Pho’s < .04
Alk 8-9
Mag 1300
Ca 440
 

Shirak

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Newbie-ish here! I have frogspawn that was very full and open for the first couple of months of owning. After a while, it’s tentacles have receded and are no longer as full and fluffy looking as before. This has been going on for months now. Additionally, I have a hammer that has started showing it’s skeleton in one place just the last few days. The hammer next to it seems to be fine.
Water parameters are all stable. Don’t currently have a way to test Mg and Calcium at home but LFS tested last week and all was in “perfect” parameters.
hammer is sitting in the middle of the 40 breeder with 2 ai primes. Help! It’s my favorite piece!

image.jpg
Have you been feeding them? Mine seem to do best when I target feed mysis and small LPS pellet food since I don't have many fish. How far above are the AI Primes? And what are you running for spectrum and intensity?
 
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coraline23

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Have you been feeding them? Mine seem to do best when I target feed mysis and small LPS pellet food since I don't have many fish. How far above are the AI Primes? And what are you running for spectrum and intensity?
We feed them on occasion. Usually mysis. The primes are 10” above the water and the hammer in question is about 5-6” below the water line. We are running a reduced version of Saxby’s.
We have two clowns, 2 fire fish, a Midas blenny and cardinal. Anemone crab and sexy shrimp.
 

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Shirak

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Hmm the Primes are not very high power at 20watts output I wonder if you are getting enough par for them at 15-16" from the light. Have you checked actual par values with a meter?

What are your nutrient levels at ? Nitrate and phosphate? You could try bumping up the target feeding too. I feed mine every other day or so and run around 5ppm nitrate and .06 phosphate.

Only other thing I can think of is flow.. up high there will be more flow so look to make sure they are not being blown excessively from the powerhead, especially from primarily one direction.
 
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coraline23

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Hmm the Primes are not very high power at 20watts output I wonder if you are getting enough par for them at 15-16" from the light. Have you checked actual par values with a meter?

What are your nutrient levels at ? Nitrate and phosphate? You could try bumping up the target feeding too. I feed mine every other day or so and run around 5ppm nitrate and .06 phosphate.

Only other thing I can think of is flow.. up high there will be more flow so look to make sure they are not being blown excessively from the powerhead, especially from primarily one direction.
Definitely not too much flow. I actually wondered if there wasn’t enough flow. It moves back and forth ever so slightly.
I haven’t checked the par with a meter...no access to one without buying and my LFS doesn’t have one to rent. I will take a water sample in today or tomorrow to get a reading on the values again. If the nitrates and phosphates are too low (like at 0) could that be a contributing factor?
I moved it up in the tank by about an inch a few weeks ago and brought it more center. It had been more to the side of the display. I have been very unsure about lighting for the whole tank
I had heard if nutrient levels are too low LPS can have a hard time also. We turned off the protein skimmer last night because we had chaeto in the sump that ended up withering away a while ago because there was nothing for it to feed on.
 

Shirak

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Definitely not too much flow. I actually wondered if there wasn’t enough flow. It moves back and forth ever so slightly.
I haven’t checked the par with a meter...no access to one without buying and my LFS doesn’t have one to rent. I will take a water sample in today or tomorrow to get a reading on the values again. If the nitrates and phosphates are too low (like at 0) could that be a contributing factor?
Yes 0 nitrates and/or phosphates would not be good for the corals. Most of their nutrition comes from the zooxanthellae which absorb nitrate and phosphate from the water. Do you often have no measurable nitrate and phosphate? What test kits are you using?
 
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coraline23

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Yes 0 nitrates and/or phosphates would not be good for the corals. Most of their nutrition comes from the zooxanthellae which absorb nitrate and phosphate from the water. Do you often have no measurable nitrate and phosphate? What test kits are you using?
Yes. They are usually 0. We are using the API 4 test. pH, nitrate, nitrite and ammonia. The mg, phos, calcium, alk we test at out LFS
Do you think an iodine dip would help to stop or slow the receding while we try to get everything else straightened out?
 

Shirak

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API test kit is not known for it's accuracy. But if it's reading 0 then it probably is. I like the NYOS for nitrate.. fast and easy to read. I use ULR Hanna for phosphate. and Hanna for Alk. Those are the 3 that really need to be monitored fairly regularly for a reef tank IMO. Salifert for Ca is a good kit also.

No I would not do an iodine dip. I don't think there is any pathogen there. Slow receding to me usually means the coral isn't getting enough nutrition or there is a problem with the Alk and Ca levels.. or both. What were the actual numbers from the test last week? 'perfect' doesn't tell us much. But since you have been getting it tested regularly and this has been a prolonged problem I am leaning towards nutrition. I don't see much in the way of coralline or algae in the tank which would also indicate low nutrients.

How often do you feed the fish and what is 'we feed them on occasion' with regards to the corals? Do you run any kind of chemical filtration or refugium?

I think the simplest thing to do would be increase feeding a bit. Particularly with target feeding those corals which are struggling with tissue recession, at least a few times a week. Monitor your nitrate and phosphate and try to hit around 3-5ppm nitrate and .03ppm phosphate and not let either drop to 0
 
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Shirak

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I have a prime 12hd not the 16 so I bumped up the levels slightly to hit 20w. 10" off the water and 6" below the water I was reading 205 par directly below the light. I measured the par in my tank with my neon hammer and frogspawns etc and was reading 175 -200 par. So I don't think you are too far off on light level. The thing with the AI lights is they are not know for spread and tend to be fairly focused. 5" off from center in any direction and par dropped to 100 at 6" below the water. Part of the issue is the 10" distance which is fairly close for AI lights. This amplifies the spotlight effect.

I would consider something like a Reef Brite Lumi light Pro. Either the 50/50 or the actinic if you like the blue pop on the corals, attached across the hood right behind the AI Primes. That would give you much better coverage and even out the light.
 

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I would get some exact #s of your params and post them. Alk, calc, mag, nitrate, phosphate and salinity to start. Reason being is if all those are within optimal ranges then you can move on to checking other things like light, flow etc... to try and find what might be bumming out certain corals. I have alot of light on my tank and keep the water as pristine as possible and all of my different lps I keep on the bottom of my 90g and they all do fine. I never feed them directly but I have alot of fish so they live off what food they might capture when I feed the fish, but mainly get what they need from elements in the water and the lights.
20210320_151901.jpg
 

Alexopora

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Newbie-ish here! I have frogspawn that was very full and open for the first couple of months of owning. After a while, it’s tentacles have receded and are no longer as full and fluffy looking as before. This has been going on for months now. Additionally, I have a hammer that has started showing it’s skeleton in one place just the last few days. The hammer next to it seems to be fine.
Water parameters are all stable. Don’t currently have a way to test Mg and Calcium at home but LFS tested last week and all was in “perfect” parameters.
hammer is sitting in the middle of the 40 breeder with 2 ai primes. Help! It’s my favorite piece!

image.jpg
Besides water parameters, I think you could also consider two more potential causes; flow and parasite. I’ve had hammers and frogspawn that shrivel up due to the flow. A little tweaking and change of position helped alot. You wanna see tumbling and bouncing tentacles and the flow coming from multiple directions. Another to consider, euphyllia eating flatworms. So far, I have encountered one when I brought home a new hammer frag a couple of months back. It looks like a flat sponge or coral flesh, that will squirm and move when u touch it or sprinkle some fresh water on it. Also if you found flatworms and manually removed them, scrub the euphylia’s skeleteon with a brush to dislodge any eggs and monitor. Repeat if necessary. These are so far the common problems I have faced with shrivelled euphyllias.
 
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