when you say water you mean saltwater right? you mix the bayer with salt water not tap water?OK, so truly one of the most asked about topics I discuss are those questions about dipping and QT procedure. It's also true I am nothing short of bananas when it comes to pest control, and have discussed individually with many of you, my exact dip protocol over the years.
I had been strong and vocal proponent of using Bayer on new arrivals for many years. Until one day, a customer of mine who was in the pesticides business, (who I hope will chime in here) essentially sat me down and told it to me straight, after having recommended to him Bayer like I normally did, following a really rough post dip prognosis after using one of the more popular commercial dips, where nearly all the frag I sent perished.
It was only after I myself had killed colony after colony of beautiful acropora in some of the more popular available dips, that I was finally desperate enough to try bayer myself. And I did. And it worked well. But here is the problem, as it was detailed for me with genuine concern. To use, or even recommend the use of a product like Bayer for any purpose other than its intended use, it's literally against the law. Now what does that mean? Basically, that all of us are technically breaking the law, every time we use Bayer to dip our corals in. Now ultimately it's pretty unlikely that any legal ramifications will come reigning down on the casual hobbyist using Bayer so no need to panic and start jettisoning that Bayer just yet. But in my case, having been the person who recommended its use, put me in a potentially liable position.
His example went something like this. If a customer of mine that I suggested Bayer to had a child come into contact with it and experience some kind of health problem, whether serious or minor, that I could potentially be responsible because it was my suggestion that he or she use the Bayer for a use outside of its intended purpose. Now again the chances are clearly slim that anything would go that far. But this information was all I needed to hear to become much less vocal, especially on public forums about using Bayer.
It made sense to me, and he assured me that he knew first hand, that there are people who would go to great lengths to locate and prosecute, if the situation was brought before them. So that conversation was the genesis of my search for a new dip and the end of my public advocacy for Bayer and a coral dip. I would only send people info on my dipping protocol and Bayer dosages if they requested it, and would be very clear about the risks, and re-tell exactly the example about the child as it was explained to me. Ultimately slapping a giant, “Use at your own risk banner” to every email with the Bayer regimen included.
This morning, after having sent that exact dip regime for the 100th+ time, (and yes, I always recommend a dip. No matter what. I have a zero exceptions policy, and that is the only way to go about keeping you system pest free) I felt it was finally the time to get vocal again about my exact dip regimen and to make aware some of the dangers and risks associated with using a product like Bayer as a dip. If there is anyone out there that can discredit, or validate this info, please feel free to share them here. I'd very much like to get some other perspectives on this as well from anyone else in the pesticides industry.
So, I am going to go ahead and post a copy of the exact short write up I have been sending people for a few years now. This was actually going to be a write up that I fully intended to share here on the forums years ago, but after my chat with the pesticides pro I put it back on the shelf. I have since modified and tweaked it here and there, as my methods have been refined as well, and as you’ll read have been working toward finding another dip for a long time now, as I'd like to get away from using Bayer completely.
Please make note that I am not advertising directly for any other dip here in any way. Nor am I or receiving any compensation at all for the mention of another dip. A much as I’d love to get a cupel free boxes of the stuff, I haven’t. I’m just stating that I have been using this dip with good results, and so far have not found anything else commercially available that I’d recommend instead. And if you have had good luck with another dip please feel free to share as well. Ultimately the general thrust of this write up, is to suggest a move away from Bayer, but here is the unpolished write up, complete with my exact dosages for Bayer as it stands.
Here’s a quick write up on my new arrival regimen. I am a little more aggressive on stuff coming out of QT, but I still have never found a worm at the inspection phase of anything coming out. I’d like to think that my QT is pest free as well but I don’t assume this at all.
My initial dosage is 3.5 oz bayer to about 1000ml water. If anything makes it through 15 min of that strength, I'll add another oz for good measure. I have had some acros stressed at the stronger dose, but haven't lost any yet. I have also been using a new dip by Polyp Lab called Reef Primer. I like it a lot in fact. It's clear so it's much easier to see whats going on, and it defiantly kills flatworms. Really hoping to move away from Bayer for good eventually, mostly because of longterm unknowns involved. I know that the reef primer is a safer product for sure. Still doing a double dip in Primer, then Bayer for good measure, ( see Bananas comment above) or I've even mixed them a few times now as an experiment. I generally implement a "scorched earth" type policy on new arrivals either way.
Anyway, the best defense however has been an extremely thorough inspection. I believe that this has made all the difference in my efforts to keep pests out. I’ll take each frag or colony one at a time, before they go in the dip, and in a separate small bucket I’ll baste them real hard with a flash light in my mouth. If they have even a single worm, from adults to really tiny ones, on them, I will find them at this stage. In most wholesale orders I'll usually find at least one. On stuff from hobbyist and other vendors, every so often.
If I do, I’ll isolate the worm in a small container like the pic below, and put a few drops of my prepared dip solution in there, and set my timer to 20 minutes. Usually within 10-15 min in the Primer they are immobile and/or very clearly dead, but this is not always the case when using Bayer. If they are not obviously dead, I’ll add some more bayer to the prepared dip and re-set the timer. This at least guarantees me that my dip is strong enough to kill them. If I find eggs on anything, coral, rock or plug, I toss them without hesitation. And don't believe anyone that says flatworms only lay eggs on skeleton, as illustrated in the second pic. Won't say exactly where these came from but if you are really curious let me know.
One more area of importance when using Bayer is a very thorough rinse. I like to fill up 2 five gallon buckets and a smaller bucket. Once the dip is over I'll vigorously shake them and swirl in the smaller bucket in an effort to remove any remaining critters, and to get and much of the Bayer off as possible. Then I'll let them soak for at least 5-10 minutes in the big bucket, hen again for another 5-10 in the other bucket. Sometimes I'll do three just for good measure.
Any update here? I've seen Reef Primer in my LFS. Have you moved away from Bayer? Still doing both? Or found some new miracle chemical?
Would you go as far to recommend this dip over some of the other options out there? I've run out of Bayer, and the warning labels on it are enough to scare me into looking for other options. I dont strictly do acros but all other corals I dip are less sensitive I feel.i have been using the UWC expel for the last few months actually and i like it a lot. i mix up a little stronger than the recommended dosage but so far so good. Effective and gentle on acros.
Would you go as far to recommend this dip over some of the other options out there? I've run out of Bayer, and the warning labels on it are enough to scare me into looking for other options. I dont strictly do acros but all other corals I dip are less sensitive I feel.
Where can you get this UWC expel from? I assume it is still not affective against aefw eggs?i have been using the UWC expel for the last few months actually and i like it a lot. i mix up a little stronger than the recommended dosage but so far so good. Effective and gentle on acros.
Really appreciate the feedback, just purchased a bottle. If its quality enough for Battlecorals home base its good for me.Hi there, Yeah I definitely would I have been echoing that to curious customers as well. It's a way better alternative to bayer. That i am sure of. I have also been experimenting with using a potassium salt brine solution, and will update this thread as I have more info as well.
When you say you mix it up stronger than the recommended dose, what is the ratio you are using? I’ve been using bayer but would like to try the UWC expel.i have been using the UWC expel for the last few months actually and i like it a lot. i mix up a little stronger than the recommended dosage but so far so good. Effective and gentle on acros.