Ricordea Predators, Irritaters, & Diseases

Discussion in 'Soft Coral Discussion' started by Azurel, Dec 31, 2007.

  1. Biertrinker

    Biertrinker Member

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    Well, I woke up this morning and checked out the tank while the actinics were on (sunrise). Underneath the florescent rics were little glowing bugs, and underneath the blue and duller colored rics were plain white bugs. I will assume the glowing bugs got their florescence from the rics they have been eating. Maybe the same guys James was having problems with? All I know is they move fast- about five days and they have destroyed my ric population. Did a quick fw dip. I'll report back again later. Ugh!
     

  2. J. Montgomery

    J. Montgomery Mouth Pipetting

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    Uh oh, thats never good. That'd be enough to make my stomach sink. The easiest way to spot a zoa eating nudi is when it goes from one colony to another while retaining the first color :(
    [​IMG]
     
  3. Azurel

    Azurel Morpharian Maffia Hitman R2R Supporter

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    Hey Brian,

    That really sucks, there is one thing I did not mention and actually forgot to mention is that I found some that were on some of the orange ones that did in fact have the pigment of the ric that was under attack. I couldn't believe it and that was one of the first things that told me they were what was causing the issue........The only thing I can say is FW dip with some iodine or iodide maybe even some sea-chem amino acid and vitamin supplement. That is what I used and move all rics from the area if you have healthy ones move them to a area away from the infection zone after a FW dip and the ones being attacked dip and move to another area. One of the things I was concerned about was mixing the infected with the healthy so I separated them. Now I have most of them back together. From what it looks like is a hatching of some sort that these little devils have come from. I have found that the tend to keep to the substrate and don't travel up into the rock work. I have some or a few rics now that are around the same area that was being infected and have showed no signs of issue since. I don't think these things have a very long life span with out the rics being there. I also had some PE type palys in the same location that didn't seem to show any signs of issues. So to my untrained eye it looked to me to be a specific predator on rics.......Keep us posted.....

    I hate to say it but I am glad I am not the only one that has seen this, cause you can be easily dismissed in this hobby if it is something new and unheard of before. Just like when I first started posting about pods eating my Red people eaters. They all told me I was stupid etc but when others start to have the same thing happening it is harder to dismiss.....I hope you don't lose any rics or as many as I did before I figured out what it was..........Keep us updated on your situation.....
     
  4. Biertrinker

    Biertrinker Member

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    Very interesting about the nudis Josh- even when stuff goes wrong in this hobby, in some small way we still get insight on some very interesting relationships.

    Another local reefer dropped by my place tonight, did water tests, then we checked out what we could under a microscope. The little orange guys are pretty small (the color made them a little easier to find on a slide), and the best I can describe them as, is tiny swimming pill capsules. We were watching them under 4x magnification. The difficulty however, is determining whether they were just scavengers eating dead/dying tissue, or were they actually killing the ricordea. I added six gallons total water volume to my tank tonight (added a sump after work) and the extra flow stirred up some detritus. Brandon (Bkv1997) spent some time blasting rocks in my tank with a turkey baster.

    I'll try another FW dip tomorrow with iodine, then move them to another part of the tank per James' recommendation. If something doesn't change quick though, I may be spending more time in the SPS forums (that's all I'll have left!). Just joking- I wouldn't leave you guys.
     
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2008
  5. Azurel

    Azurel Morpharian Maffia Hitman R2R Supporter

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    I can assure you Brian in my case there wasn't any dead tissue or sickness in the rics I was having this problem with...The ones I found that were florescent orange were definitely from the coloring of the ric either they ingested it or was on their exoskeleton.......Not sure of the reason for this other then there are some rics coming in from a distributor that has gotten infected rics and these things lay eggs inside or on rubble the rics are attached to and then hatch out......The FW dips/ iodine or Amino acid and vitamin supplement definitely helped.....I haven't had an issue in at least a week or more, most likely more then a week....
     
  6. Morphologic

    Morphologic Member Showcase Editor

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    I have also observed these tiny swimming "barrels" that seem to eat the flesh of the Ricordea and then ingest the fluorescent colored pigment. I believe that it is some sort of protozoan that causes "brown jelly" infections. Or at least when you find one infection, you always find the other. The best cure for this is to make sure that you have good flow around your rics. Sandbeds with low flow are a big offender and seem to encourage these infections. I don't think it is contagious so long as you keep the infected ric from touching any other polyps. The brown jelly seems to cut down on the flow/oxygenation even more, causing a feedback loop of badness to nearby corals. A syringe is helpful in removing the jelly so that coral can heal itself if the infection is caught early enough.
     
  7. xrayrider

    xrayrider Active Member

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    A friend of mine once told me he had been scuba diving once, and noticed a swarm of small critters, he thinks were some form of copepod, isopod, or amphapod. He went in to take a closer look. He said they were swarming around something he thinks they were eating. He couldn't say if they were eating a fish, or a coral, but when he got too close they swarmed onto the areas of his face and hands that were not covered by the wet suit. He said they really hurt when they started biting, so he got out of there without ever figuring out what they were eating. Maybe there are flesh eating pods that like Ricordea. Glad I never had them. Glad you are figuring out what to do about them.
     
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