Why do some zoas thrive and others melt away? (zoa pros we need your help)

BRS

Have you ever had problems with zoanthids "melting" in your tank?

  • YES but only with certain zoanthids

    Votes: 129 41.7%
  • YES with a lot of different zoanthid types

    Votes: 78 25.2%
  • No not at all

    Votes: 66 21.4%
  • I don't keep zoanthids

    Votes: 31 10.0%
  • Other (please explain)

    Votes: 5 1.6%

  • Total voters
    309

shakacuz

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i've had bob marley's, el corazone, a-kraks, illuminati's, nirvana's, buttmuncher, buttkisser's all melt on me (in different times). water parameters were good, so i chalked it up to bacterial infection/high metals from an ICP test..
 

whiterabbit

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Just posted this in another thread, but I can't keep Orange Oxides. I've tried 3 different frags from 3 different sources and placed them in different locations in my tank and they've all melted away. I have a ton of zoas (to the point I have to trim them back) and coral that's "harder" to keep, but the Oxides are the only ones that really just won't take.
8-1-reef-living room.jpg
Where did you get that zoa in the front center; the ones with the pink centers? You have a gorgeous tank btw, but those zoas are real stunners.
 

xiong_reef

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There are many strains of Cyanobacteria that can effect zoas and chemi clean can help with that issue.I use it regularly and hope I don’t lose my LSOH, Illuminati and various other high ends. however I’ve tried a half a dozen purple monster frags but cannot keep them from melting
Do you treat the whole tank with chemiclean?
 

HappyMeal

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I only have about 6 months experience with them so far but have accumulated an assortment in that time. I've notice that different variations like different parts of the tank. The longer tentacle ones usually like higher flow and generally respond to direct feeding more than short tentacle ones. Some short tentacle ones like more lighting than others while some like shadier spots with low flow.

I had a short tentacle zoa that was open and looked well, but then started receding and only partially opened for about a week. I moved it a distance of about an inch and a half to a spot with a little more shade and it has now doubled it's polyps in a couple of weeks.

I have another cluster perched higher up on a rock. All of the polyps in the shade melted away, but the rest of it looks fine and happy.

I've seen different generalized placement recommendations for zoas from different places. I'm starting to see that the recommendations are a good starting point, but not all zoas will be happy in the same conditions.
 

Moray_SC17

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I agree with this alot. Low par, high nutrients and high flow to prevent detritus buildup between the stalks is key. Another important aspect with zoas is a solid qt procedure. Protozoan infections have been a very wide spread culprit for my systems. I commonly use metronidazole with success in even saving the "meltiest" specimens.

Hahahahhaaaa. Yes. Stuff melts.

Number one reason is high par. Some of the ‘most difficult’ to keep zoas just need low par (~80) and high nutrients (wolverines, halls, Mohicans, etc). My trough maxes out around 150par with all lights on but some areas in the edges are 70-80par.

A very close second is bacterial and protozoan infections. I believe it’s grossly under estimated just how often people lose frags or colonies to stuff that gets introduced via new acquisitions.

Finally there’s a good old fashion ‘group melt.’ It’s almost like a pheromone a specific strain will put out there to either stall or full melt.

In a larger sense zoas parallel tangs. Both Achilles and naso tangs are grouped together as ‘tangs’ but their diets and ecological niches couldn’t be more different. Just so utter chaos and bam bams are both ‘zoas’ but their morphology and tolerance for different conditions vary. Needless to say not all zoas are created equally and our superficial classification of ‘zoas’ or ‘palys’ fails to capture the nuance of just how different some strains are from each other.

My stumbling block for the longest time was as#kraks. I finally got those and wolverines sorted out.

I am, however, done with trying bloodshots. There’s pirates blood and enough similar ones to make it just not worth trying. Occasionally you hear about a ‘bullet proof’ strain but I have see/had long term success with one yet.

EB045E65-810A-43F0-A71A-6B79933C458A.jpeg
 

littlebigreef

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I agree with this alot. Low par, high nutrients and high flow to prevent detritus buildup between the stalks is key. Another important aspect with zoas is a solid qt procedure. Protozoan infections have been a very wide spread culprit for my systems. I commonly use metronidazole with success in even saving the "meltiest" specimens.

Excellent call on the metronidazole. I recently added it to my treatment regime where furan or chemiclean weren’t working. Do you use metroplex or a different product? And are you using it as a dip or do you treat system wide?
 
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