Need help cleaning out tank fast

Blackice_Tom

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I have had a fluval evo 12 tank setup for going around 2 years. I have had a clownfish for a year and a half and a bubble tip anemone for close to a year now. But around the time I added an anemone I also added a zoanthid rock. Me as a beginner didnt check the rock or dip it so it became infested with unsee an aiptasia. At this time I just started neglecting the tank and only taking care of my clownfish and not coral. Now over quarantine I have finally seen how bad this tank looks. It is the worst infestation of aiptasia I’ve seen. The clownfish looks to still be healthy and happy but my zoanthids and anemone has died. I need to get rid of all of these aiptasia but don’t know how to do it. There are so many my lfs said not to us aiptasia rx or Kalkwasser. Do I just ditch these rocks and go get new ones, or keep these rocks, but I don’t know how to get rid of all of the aiptasia. Any help will be appreciated because I’m at a road block. But I do have a couple smaller tanks just laying around with RO water if you needed to know
 

Fishy65

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I am a big fan of using natural means. There are shrimp, filefish, and nudibranch that will eat them. It may take time but I always opt for Natural methods before I go for chemicals. Getting new rock is an option to... but IMO if you add new rock to the tank without sterilization you will end up with more aptasia.
 

andrewey

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You have a few options at this time (you have more, but these are the ones I would personally select from).

1) Discard the rock/substrate and start over with fresh live rock or bleach the rock/tank and start over with dry rock. House the clown temporarily in another enclosure. Not a fan of this technique in a normal tank, but given the lack of coral/other animals and the size of the tank, worth considering in your case.
2) Buy some berghia nudibranches- cost a bit of money, but most likely to be effective.
3) Contact your LFS/reef club and see if anyone has a matted file fish you can borrow. Make sure to get one that is known to go after aiptasia. This won't be as effective as the nudis due to the limitations on what the file fish can physically reach (underside of rocks, crevices, etc.).
4) Manual removal. Remove one rock at a time and either kalk or cover in epoxy/glue. Make sure to rinse off well to ensure you don't harm the tank with pH if using kalk/lemon juice. This can work on a tank this size, but it's going to be an uphill battle and take a few weeks of manual labor.
5) I would skip the peppermint shrimp in this case. You're more likely to recieve an "imposter" and many peppermints won't touch some of your larger aiptasia. Not as effective as the nudis or file fish.
 
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Blackice_Tom

Blackice_Tom

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That’s a good idea about the filefish and nudis but I don’t really have a good trustly lfs anywhere semi close at all that sells live animals. I can restart my tank because I have access to sand and rock for cheap and good live bacteria.
 

BighohoReef

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If the aptasia is too much to handle I would recommend removing all rock and starting over. Make the old live rock garden stones and get new live or dry rock and restart your cycle. Clean the tank thoroughly though as aptsasia is a hearty little nem.

If you want to want you to keep what you have you can try aptasia eating bergphia nudibranch coupled with a filefish and they should mow a majority of it down. The filefish might be to much for your smaller water column though.
 
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brandon429

why did you put a reef in that
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I bet we can beat it using standard nano reef cleaning and rasping. so let me know if you want the tank rip cleaned and 1st round aiptasia killed off/you are using a special metal tool not a doser.

a rip clean is taking your whole reef apart, cleaning out junk in the sand, cleaning all rocks, and putting back a 100% fixed tank in about 3 hours time. there's a certain way to remove aiptasia that isn't very commonly used...which is why you see all the various approaches hoped will work but not quite sure.

when I got an aiptasia in 2009, I did the move and haven't seen another since. we have a 35 page thread of hundreds of rip cleans, they're skip cycle moves we know how to avoid recycling reefs. if you want a custom job, it wouldn't be hard to fix this particular reef that aip invasion isn't that bad.
 

brandon429

why did you put a reef in that
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experiment real quick, lift one out and do this anti anemone move :)

lift out rock and take a flathead screwdriver, small one, and hammer tap it up under an aiptasia taking out some base with it/chipping and rasp dislodge. remove it exactly in the way polyps are removed medically; they're obliterated for a reason and the substrate they were attached to bleeds a bit for a reason (thorough, one pass remove)

you could easily rinse the spot off in distlled or clean water it does not have to be saltwater, flush raspings down the sink, and set the rock back -1 aiptasia, the right way

sounds like a big job>? price of hesitation. doesnt change the outcome, I never have aiptasia in the pico reefs we make online due to rasping, they're 100% beatable. we begin on polyp 1 or 3 max; having 50 doesnt change anything. catchup dentistry is catchup dentistry. its the right way to fix the tank.

then we blast clean all the sand out/set up a perfect new old tank.
 

andrewey

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Could you elaborate on this "special metal tool"? I'm extremely dubious how you are able to overcome the issue's of aiptasia reproduction, something I haven't seen any manual removal overcome in one shot? Does your metal tool overcome the aiptasia's asexual reproduction? How would this differ from the challenges faced by those employing any other mechanical means?
 

BighohoReef

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Here is a Rip Clean thread

 

brandon429

why did you put a reef in that
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make sure to research well before running the clean, we rinse your sandbed in tap water and if you underdo that, its very dangerous. needs thorough planning before whole rip. if you try and clean the system without rinsing the bed clean, that's 100% risky...so many paths to take and only one is safe for a surgical cleaning move.

doing the rock modeling portion above is a single rock, that doesnt disturb sandbed waste so thats nbd
 
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ifrankielin

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Move your rock into your friends tank with copperband fish in it.
It should be taking Care in a few hours.
Few piece at a time.
My copperband rid my 180 tank full of aptistia in a day.
 

vetteguy53081

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Kleini butterfly is your answer. It will have these gone in 3-5 days.
Eats aptasia like candy, colorful and friendly, eats ALLfrozen and dry foods and does not bother my coral.
 

LOVEROCK

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Could you elaborate on this "special metal tool"? I'm extremely dubious how you are able to overcome the issue's of aiptasia reproduction, something I haven't seen any manual removal overcome in one shot? Does your metal tool overcome the aiptasia's asexual reproduction? How would this differ from the challenges faced by those employing any other mechanical means?
Dental pick
 

brandon429

why did you put a reef in that
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but its a 12 gal

we wouldnt want to add waste on top of waste, compounding. our rasp is faster than a fish, more thorough. there's only one reason aiptasia invade someone's tank: they want it that way. To lay out a way to fix it and opt out of that is to select in for the invasion, or its continuance.

in a 12 gallon there isnt one invasion that can win, not one. they're invasion proof, unless we want them invaded and then they are. With the access trick above, a nano can withstand any invasion in reefing and beat it.
 

brandon429

why did you put a reef in that
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a metal dental pick profi angle mentioned above is the best rasping tool

its what it takes to dislodge plaque, or accreted reef items, or flexible little anemones. and its exacting vs broadcast, allows a dentist to rasp right up under gums and us to rasp right up next to corals....dentistry and reefing have about 20 blending points for sure. being that reef dentistry is typically a mode of access, not all tanks can enjoy it. but any nano on the earth sure can, 12 gallons is easy to take apart.
 

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