New tank and already infested :(

normal

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Hi Everyone,

First of all let me thank all of you for sharing knowledge on the hobby and making such a great sharing place.

I'm a complete noob in saltwater tanks and I've just set up my first tank! It's a 120 lt (30 gallon) cube and filled it with live rock because i was told it was better for all critters that come within, but it seems i made a huge mistake.

So, my aquascape is made out of 4 rocks, 2 base rocks and 2 rocks that sit on top of those base rocks. Base rocks came from one of the tanks of the LFS (the coral frags display tank) and the top rocks came from another tank.

The base rocks came with a few hitchhikers, including what i think are palythoa and zoanthid polyps (purple and orange). Mind you, i wanted a paly/zoa free tank because of my toddler kid. I've attached an image for reference

The big issue is on the 2 top rocks. They are full of aiptasia... I was super excited when i saw the first one because it was red under the lighting setting i had at the time, but turning all whites up, it's full brown and just like any other aiptasia image. I've also attached the image for reference, but i'm convinced it's the dreaded "weed".

Now i'm in a bit of a crossroad... I can either try to return all rock, since the tank was set up today and rocks bought today as well, or i can try to control this, but with the naked eye i'm spotting 3 or 4 aiptasias.

What do you think i should do?

image10.jpeg image7.jpeg image0-1.jpeg
 

claus

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You're at the point where it is better to pull the rock and start fresh if you don't want to deal with the problem later when it is established. Having said that, of all the problems I had with pests or problem coral ( planeria, purple clove polyps), aptasia in my experience were the easiest to eradicate naturally with peppermint shrimp. Purchase dry rock, that way you start with a clean slate.
 

Silverfish

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Welcome and sorry about your rough start. Since they r new I would gently remove and soak in fresh water then scrub the heck out of them and repeat. Then let them completely dry out and try again.

Some would say toss them, which is not a bad idea.
Also b sure to look at other ideas and use what works for you!
 
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Thanks all for the quick replies. If i return the rock, do I have to remove water and sand? Can i just add dry rock and feed it with bacterias straight away? The tank was only cycling for 1 day.
 
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Two cents of optimism here...
A few points to address; the first is, "safety". The majority of inhabitants within the reef tank, and the reef tank itself should not be considered "child safe" or "child friendly". It is not! Great care should be afforded to both.
As for exchanging the rock, I'm sure the person who sold it will not mind exchanging it. After all, those critters came out of his system.
The bright side of all this is that you have identified a pest and can take corrective action at eliminating it, or just starting over again; maybe with dry rock.
My first tank started with live rock with all kinds of weird things living on it, and at night with a flash light I could see even more strange things that had emerged from it.... it was crazy awesome!
It's a really good way to learn about the hobby, as your going to encounter these things as you progress.
I say welcome and enjoy!
 

brandon429

why did you put a reef in that
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do not trade off ten mins of aiptasia removal for forty months of dinos/white rock. keep your live rock, case closed. above/screwdriver told you how to rid them, it works. take time time to guide and you should keep this rock. you will have to access this live rock for other tradeoff issues, such as gha coming up. you will access the rock a hundred times directly over the course of the reef if you are doing it right, gardening and directing nicely, and its all better than one round of dinos by stripping all the life back out of the tank.
 

xxkenny90xx

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do not trade off ten mins of aiptasia removal for forty months of dinos/white rock. keep your live rock, case closed. above/screwdriver told you how to rid them, it works. take time time to guide and you should keep this rock. you will have to access this live rock for other tradeoff issues, such as gha coming up. you will access the rock a hundred times directly over the course of the reef if you are doing it right, gardening and directing nicely, and its all better than one round of dinos by stripping all the life back out of the tank.
+1
 

brandon429

why did you put a reef in that
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I truly think aiptasia is the easiest invader to work with, especially when in low numbers at the start.

what the masses do is different, they inject stuff or use animals and that adds variation. but if i took that live rock out and used a screwdriver to dig it out, perhaps even break a rock in half at critical access points (now you have two) one pass can simply rid that tank of the few aiptasias, all done outside of the tank. they only wreck tanks when allowed to remain in place, we'd absolutely pulverize them in one pass.

I had an aiptasia stuck to the side of my live rock/an old piece. the aip came off a new brain coral frag, landed there. used rusty wire cutters to lop off the section of live rock it was attached to, no more aiptasia.

work with their anchor points, dig out and take the holdfast with them. dont smear the flesh all around into the crevices. coralline fills back in your cut and dig points.
 

Dolelo96

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I replaced my rock with CaribeSea Life Rock andI love it...

 
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Hi again everyone! Thank you all for your replies! My LFS replaced the rock with rock from a completely different tank and I've restarted.

I'm now passing through a stage of what I think is Diatoms, but I'm not too sure... They have bubbles on top of them and form strings when on the glass surface, so I read it could be Dinos. Should I be worried?

The tank only has 1 week with this live rock.

Pictures attached! Thanks all

image1.jpeg image2.jpeg image4.jpeg image3.jpeg image0.jpeg
 
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glb

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That could be diatoms, which are normal, but the bubbles could make it dinos. Agreed that you don’t need lights on during a cycle. Turning them off should take care of any nuisance algae. Hang in there, all tanks go through an ugly stage!!
 
OP
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Thanks for the replies guys. I have 2 hitchhiker paly/zoa polyps. Will they survive a blackout?
 

vetteguy53081

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Thanks for the replies guys. I have 2 hitchhiker paly/zoa polyps. Will they survive a blackout?
Yes and leave rock in there. The aptasia- get yourself a kleini butterfly and the aptasia will be gone in days
 

Rogueaquariums

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Hi Everyone,

First of all let me thank all of you for sharing knowledge on the hobby and making such a great sharing place.

I'm a complete noob in saltwater tanks and I've just set up my first tank! It's a 120 lt (30 gallon) cube and filled it with live rock because i was told it was better for all critters that come within, but it seems i made a huge mistake.

So, my aquascape is made out of 4 rocks, 2 base rocks and 2 rocks that sit on top of those base rocks. Base rocks came from one of the tanks of the LFS (the coral frags display tank) and the top rocks came from another tank.

The base rocks came with a few hitchhikers, including what i think are palythoa and zoanthid polyps (purple and orange). Mind you, i wanted a paly/zoa free tank because of my toddler kid. I've attached an image for reference

The big issue is on the 2 top rocks. They are full of aiptasia... I was super excited when i saw the first one because it was red under the lighting setting i had at the time, but turning all whites up, it's full brown and just like any other aiptasia image. I've also attached the image for reference, but i'm convinced it's the dreaded "weed".

Now i'm in a bit of a crossroad... I can either try to return all rock, since the tank was set up today and rocks bought today as well, or i can try to control this, but with the naked eye i'm spotting 3 or 4 aiptasias.

What do you think i should do?

image10.jpeg image7.jpeg image0-1.jpeg
I would personally take that rock out & start over with dry rock or try a small army of peppermint shrimp to see if you can eradicate the aptasia
 

Sailingeric

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I would personally take that rock out & start over with dry rock or try a small army of peppermint shrimp to see if you can eradicate the aptasia
Sounds like the OP got different rock. I had some aiptasia in sump that I think I mostly got rid of but when I did see a couple on a rock in my DT I pulled the rock out and hit the spot with a cooking blow torch, like what you would use to make creme brulee. It is extreme but that stopped it and I have not seen any since.
 
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