Red Serpent Starfish, ophioderma squamosissimus, reef safe or not? (nano fish, coral, clams)

Muffin87

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Could someone who's had a red serpent stafish in a reef tank chime in with their insight? I'd really appreciate it :)
I found this old thead about it, but it's vague. It's unclear if there are multiple species of red serpent starfish, and if they are all reef safe.

I just ordered a Red Serpent Starfish. The species is ophioderma squamosissimus, endemic in the Caribbean, reported maximum dimensions vary between 20cm and 40cm (8 and 16 inches).
My questions about it are:

1) Anecdotally, the oral disk of a ophioderma squamosissimus can be as big as 1 or 2 inches. Will it really be reef-safe? Nano fish, coral clams, included -- Don't care for shrimps and crabs.
Fish in 50G are pretty small. There're ocellaris, gobies, dartfish.

2) Is ophioderma squamosissimus the only bright red serpent starfish, are there other red serpent starfish species that could be mistaken for it?

3) Is the Green serpent starfish the only non-reef-safe serpent starfish?

Thanks a lot everyone!
 
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sunken3

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i have had red, black spiny, and green. i think any could be an issue to clams if the clam was unhealthy (already dying), but otherwise the red and black were never an issue. the green on the other hand.. that guy was aggressive. lost some fish from him back in the day. I picked him up to move him to my sump and he drew blood ... mean son of a gun.
 
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Muffin87

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i have had red, black spiny, and green. i think any could be an issue to clams if the clam was unhealthy (already dying), but otherwise the red and black were never an issue. the green on the other hand.. that guy was aggressive. lost some fish from him back in the day. I picked him up to move him to my sump and he drew blood ... mean son of a gun.
Thanks for the info!
Do you do large water changes?
I don't understand if they're hardy enough to withtstand a big pH swing (7.8 to 8.3), or a relatively big correction in salinity (30 ppt to 35 ppt).
Not planning to have either in the near future, but just wanna know if I need to be careful, should the need arise.
 

sunken3

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i have done large and small.. they seem to be pretty hardy (compared to other stars) but your mileage may vary.. is there a reason you would do a 30 to 35ppt water change?
 
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Muffin87

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i have done large and small.. they seem to be pretty hardy (compared to other stars) but your mileage may vary.. is there a reason you would do a 30 to 35ppt water change?
My tank is only 50G and I wanna find a way to keep dendros and sun corals.
Hopefully, my refractometer won't fail me. But errors do happen.
 
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rkpetersen

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I've had two large red serpents measuring about 10" when stretched out, and 4 smaller grey serpents, in one of my mixed reef tanks, for a few years now. They have never harmed any fish, coral or other invert. They are really a great addition, whipping out from behind rocks when food hits the water. I feed them chopped up table shrimp once a month or so, with a blunt-tipped pipette that lets them get the food, and not the greedy fish trying to take it from them.

Whether they are the exact species you're asking about, who knows for sure? But they are identical to images of Ophioderma squamosissimus posted online.

I like serpents, which are smooth skinned, more than the spiny brittlestars. I guess I don't trust the spiny ones not to damage corals, and the green spiny brittlestars are known to ambush and eat fishes.
 
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