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FAQs about Caryophyllid Coral Disease Treatment

Related Articles: Coral Pests and Disease; pests, predators, diseases and conditions by Sara Mavinkurve, Caryophyllid Corals, Elegance Coral

FAQs on Euphylliid Disease: Caryophyllid Disease 1, Caryophyllid Disease 2, Caryophyllid Disease 3, Caryophyllid Disease 4, Caryophyllid Disease 5, Caryophyllid Disease 6, Caryophyllid Disease 7, Euphylliid Health 8, Euphylliid Health 9, Euphylliid Health 10, Euphylliid Health 11, Euphylliid Health 12, Euphylliid Health 13, Euphylliid Health 14, & Elegance Coral Disease/Pests,
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FAQs on Stony Coral Disease: Stony Coral Disease 1, Stony Coral Disease 2, Stony Coral Disease 3, Stony Coral Disease 4, Stony Coral Disease 5, Stony Coral Disease 6, Stony Coral Disease 7, Stony Coral Disease 8, Stony Coral Disease 9, Stony Coral Disease 10, Stony Coral Disease 11, Stony Coral Disease 12, Stony Coral Disease 13, Stony Coral Disease 14, Stony Coral Disease 15, Stony Coral Disease ,
FAQs on Stony Coral Disease by Category: Diagnosing: Environmental (Pollution/Poisoning, Lighting...), Nutritional, Social (Allelopathy), Trauma, Pathogenic (Infectious, Parasitic, Viral) Predatory/Pest, Treatments 
FAQs on Stony Coral Disease by Family: Acroporid Disease, Acroporid Disease 2, Acroporid Disease 3, Acroporid Disease 4..., Caryophyllid Disease 2..., Elegance Coral Disease/Pests, Dendrophylliid Disease, Faviid Disease, Faviid Disease 2, Fungiid Disease, Mussid Disease, Mussid Health 2, Poritid Health, Trachyphylliid Disease, Trachyphyllia Disease 2,
FAQs on Stony Coral Disease by Type: Brown Jelly Disease,

Slightly reduced spg, dip w/ Malachite Green can/does often halt tissue degeneration

At times Lugol's, Iodide-ate baths, and pulsed over dosing have proven efficacious

Returning colonies to optimized, stabilized, low stress settings is requisite.

NEED some soluble N, P, and K. IF you have no nutrient... they will do poorly, die

Re: Torch coral help?    10/28/16
Hey there (once again),
Thanks for the help it really is greatly appreciated. Concerning the iodide-ate, is it the iodine supplement dosed in the reef tank on a weekly basis. Or is it the iodine dip used to disinfect?
<They are all the same here>
One last question. What is the sugar supposed to do? (Is it for the same purpose as carbon dosing?)
<Gets into the animals bloodstream... a source of simple nutrient>
Thanks again!
<Welcome. BobF>

Euphyllias... hlth.          6/13/16
Thank you. I notice something odd. The hammers in my 265 for the most part are doing well. Their heads get larger and the babies double their sizes in about 3 days. But there are few heads on the side that keep dying like the big heads are competing causing their demise?
<Possible... I encourage you to review the FAQs archived on WWM re this family's compatibility and health. Solutions frequently sought include the use of chemical filtrants, ozone.... moving the considered offender/s,
offendees... fragging...
Bob Fenner>

Question re: Branching Euphyllia dying    2/22/16
Hello WWM!
<Hey Cath>
Thank you in advance for all your advice and help. It's such a wonderful resource for us new aquarists. I'm having some serious troubles with one of my corals and none of my coral books have been able to provide a clear answer.
Some background, I have a 72G w/ 20G sump (with refugium), running now for almost 9 months old. I have 1 torch Euphyllia, 1 branching Euphyllia, 1 hammerhead Euphyllia and 1 leather A. Sinularia. Also a small Ricordea that arrived with the live rock. All are fairly spaced out with at least 6-8 inches between them. For fish I have a watchman goby + pistol shrimp, 3 Banggai cardinals, 1 Firefish, 2 clownfish & 2 cleaner shrimp.
Up until 2 months ago, everything was going along perfectly with really no issues, corals were looking healthy and I'd had nothing die beyond the occasional snail or hermit crab. The problems began when I took a holiday over Christmas and the tank went almost 6 weeks with almost no maintenance.
I came back to a tank that had a variety of macroalgae taking over the live-rock. A couple weeks ago I started again with my typical 10G water changes. Then last Tuesday I noticed my torch euphellyia had lost 2 out of 6 of it's branches (the polyps had seemingly disappeared overnight and left the calcified stumps behind). On Thursday the remaining branches looked worse for wear and so I did another water change of 10G and checked all the water parameters.
<Then; or now; I'd be double, triple dosing w/ iodide-ate>
Nitrates/nitrites and ammonia all basically zero.
<Ahh, need some N, P, K....>

By yesterday one more branch's polyps are shrunken right to the base and what looked like a piece of dead polyp hanging off it, a second branch is looking darker and more retracted with the last two branches still looking healthy. The other corals look fine and no different than usual.
My question is should I cut off the dead/dying branches to try to save the last normal branches if it is in fact some kind of infection?
<I'd leave all in place. The way Euphyllias (Caryophyllid, Euphylliids) "work" is that the various branches are autonomous... one dying won't necessarily mal-affect the remaining>
Should I be turning down the lights in case the coral is struggling from a sudden light shock? I can't think of what else it could be because nothing else has changed as far as temperature, salinity or nutrient dosing (I do only occasional Ca). No new creatures have been introduced - the clownfish and hammerhead Euphyllia were the last to be added in November.
Thank you thank you!
<I would step up the fish et al. feeding to where you can register some NO3.... or more dangerously add a complete "coral" fertilizer that will do this... I'd also be using GAC in your filter/flow path... Do you have means of measuring RedOx? Bob Fenner>

Question on further treating Hammer Coral -- 02/01/09 Hello there everyone... & Thank You ahead of time for any help you can offer! <Welcome> I received a green hammer coral as a gift - It was doing good for about a day, then I noticed that one end was shriveling up and being covered by a white film. I syphoned it off and saw brown stringy stuff and started doing searches. It appears to be Brown Jelly disease. I did a fresh water dip with Lugol's Iodine for about 5 minutes and syphoned off as much of the diseased area as I could. I returned it to the tank and has been about 2 hours since and it has opened back up with the exception of some still ailing areas. <Mmm> My question is two fold. How long should I wait to see improvement before I decide to take further measures? <A few days> And also since it did seem to spread to the other two heads if I decide to have my husband break out the Dremel are there any good photos or instructions on fragging a hammer coral? <Likely in books, articles... See Anthony Calfo's work> I read some people say in the case of an infection to just cut right through the flesh to remove the diseased portions and then iodine dip them. I would like to try and avoid causing any further stress or damage - I did make a concentrated iodine solution and use the turkey baster to shoot it right at the coral which I thought might help without the stress of the dip. <Mmm, the breaking, rinsing need to be done out of the water... over a bucket or such> I just want to react quickly enough without being hasty and over reacting... I did not QT this coral as I didn't have the proper lighting in my QT. My specs are 12g Nano <Hard to keep small volumes stable, optimized> temp: steady 77 my ph was 8.0 yesterday and I dosed Super KH Buffer <Needs to be done through pre-mixed water changing> Nitrites and Amm. 0 and Nitrates <10 ppm Sal 1.022 <Much too low... see WWM re NSW strength seawater use> Some pics taken with my phone was the best I could do... I hope it helps! Hammer Coral Dying - a set on Flickr I think that covers it. I have read many threads but it seemed necessary to get more specific help as it seems I can still save this beauty. <I would take your time here... Read re Euphylliids... on WWM at least. Bob Fenner>

Pictures for Urgent Help with a Hammer Coral 1/8/04 Hi guys.  I need your help badly. <Hi Jim.  Adam here, hopefully with the help you need!  I have combined your two messages into one.> Just before Christmas I purchased two new corals, a large hammer (non-branching) and a very large frogspawn/Octobubble with 5 (soon to be six) heads.  Based on readings and previous discussions, I placed the frogspawn within the top 8 inches, and the hammer a little further down, because that's roughly where they were at the LFS, and we have nearly identical lighting (4x48" VHO, 3 White and 1 actinic). <Wise to introduce the corals to light they are "used to".  I would guess that these would do fine anywhere in the tank, though.> Well, the frogspawn was doing well, but the hammer wasn't opening all the way, particularly the parts that were lowest on the coral and most facing away from the lights (as I said, this is a LARGE specimen with a very convoluted skeleton and many mouths.  The "ridge" has at least three Y's in it). <Non-branching Euphyllias tend to be a bit more delicate than the branching varieties, and when they do get injured, you risk losing the whole animal instead of a single head.> So I decided that moving it a little higher on the rock formation was in order.  Well, I was right, because after moving, the whole animal opened up much better, <I doubt this was light related.  More likely current or simply time in your system.> except for the part that I bumped/scraped against the edge of a neighboring rock while repositioning (on the part that was already weakened by inadequate light, no less). <Oops!  I know what is coming next....> Well, within a day I thought I could see tissue recession, and on New Year's eve I began to see brown, stringy material coming up off the wound.  Fearing Brown Jelly, which has killed the other two hammers I have tried in the last five years, I read as much as I could on your website, then I fixed a clean bucket up with 3/4 gallon of tank water, plus 1/2 gallon fresh water, plus 4 drops of Malachite Green.  Made the coral mad.  Mucus everywhere.  But by noon the next day, the whole coral, except for the wounded part, looked great again. <Glad the coral survived the dip!  If by "fresh water" you mean non-salt (as opposed to freshly mixed artificial sea water), I would skip that step.  Hyposalinity is equally or more dangerous to the coral than to any opportunistic invaders.> Well, the recession continued, but slowly.  I can't imagine it is brown jelly, because after a week there is less than an inch of receded material/skeleton exposed, and none of my other corals are affected (thank God).  I did try another Malachite Green dip, using five drops with the same water mix, night before last.  It hasn't done anything to slow the progress. <See below for comments on Iodine dips.  In addition, you can try sealing the edge of the receding tissue with super glue.  This often helps stop the progress of recession.> This is a large, beautiful (and expensive) hammer, and I really don't want to lose it.  What can I do?  I'll try to snap a picture tomorrow when the lights are on and the coral is open. <As long as "Brown Jelly" isn't present, this type of recession often stops on it's own, and the coral just resumes growing from the remaining living portion.  Sometimes, despite best efforts, it takes out the entire coral.> Incidentally, here are the param.s for my tank: 72 Gallon bowfront Berlin Protein Skimmer Refugium with Sand/LR/Caulerpa Ammonia=0 Nitrite-0 Nitrate<10 ppm PH 8.4 Alkalinity 4.46 meq/L I can't speak to calcium right now, because my test kit went bad and I need to get a new one.  Has typically been around 380-420. I am currently using about 1 Sea Lab 28 block per week as my only supplement.  I don't like to add things to my tank unless they appear to be necessary. <Everything sounds fine, but you didn't list salinity (I am partial to full strength of 1.025-1.026).  I am not familiar with the sea lab product, but guess that it is for alkalinity?  I also agree that in most cases that additives (other than Ca/Alk) are unnecessary, especially if you aren't testing for them.> My Red Lobophyllia has been doing nicely for the last two years, as has my Candycane/trumpet coral.  The Candycane divides regularly.  Growth on the Lobophyllia has been pretty slow, but it is at the bottom of the tank on the substrate.  Unfortunately, I do have some soft corals in the tank.  I am slowly transitioning from soft to LPS, but I just can't bring myself to get rid of my Colt or ALL of my green frilly mushrooms and star polyps (I took about 75% and gave them away or put them in other tanks).  None of them is close to the Hammer. <It sounds like most of your corals are healthy, but beware that Shrooms and colts are high on the list for chemical warfare.  Physical proximity in the tank doesn't mean much in such a small volume of water.> Thanks so much for your help Jim Jensen Hello again.  I took a couple pics with my digital camera this morning.  I am afraid they aren't great (neither is the camera), but at least you can see the problem.  Ignore the blue spot in the second photo, it's just glare.  The coral looks worse today.  You can see the brown, stringy material coming up off the dead part of the skeleton.  Should I try doing another Malachite Green dip, or some sort of Iodine dip?  I've never dosed with/used Iodine.  I am not sure where I would even get it.  I imagine that what you get at the drug store is not the right stuff. <It is hard to tell much from the picture.  I have not used malachite green, but have used Lugol's iodine, which should be available at your local pharmacy (some won't sell without a prescription), scientific supply store, or a good pet shop.  A 15 dip with 10-15 drops per quart of tank water makes a reasonable treatment.  During the treatment, gently brush away any necrotic tissue with a toothbrush.  After treatment, consider sealing the "wound" with super glue.> Please advise!  Jim
<Good luck!  Adam>

Re: Urgent Help with a Hammer Coral Adam, Thanks for the advice! <No worries!> Since I sent in the email, the recession has almost stopped, and I am not seeing any necrotic tissue, so I am just holding my breath and leaving it alone, thinking that disturbing the coral for a dip right now might do more harm than good. <Glad to hear the coral is improving.  I agree strongly with simply leaving it alone as long as the recession has stopped.> I did purchase some Kent Iodine, and added two small doses over the last 4 days (1 tsp), but I don't want to add too much until I get a test kit (which the LFS doesn't carry).  Is Lugol's different from the prepackaged Kent Iodine?  How much Kent would I use if I did decide to do a dip treatment?  And I assume you meant fifteen minutes? <Yup.  15 minutes.  Sorry for the omission.  The Kent iodine additive is different than Lugol's.  Kent does also distribute Lugol's, but it is packaged in a medicine dropper style bottle.  I am not sure what the equivalent dip dosage would be since they are different chemical forms of iodine.> As for the Malachite dip, I was using 3/4 gallon of saltwater out of the tank and 1/2 gallon of fresh (non-salt) water, because it seems like Bob was suggesting that hyposalinity increases absorption of the Malachite.  But since there doesn't appear to be any brown jelly, I won't try Malachite green again (unless bj sets in....) <I will go back and read Bob's recommendation on this, but I feel pretty strongly about not subjecting corals to hyposalinity since it exerts a great deal of osmotic stress.> My tank runs 1.023, <With corals present, I strongly recommend NSW concentration of 1.025-1.026.> and the Sea Lab 28 is supposed to be a "complete" supplement--Calcium & Alk, plus strontium, Iodine and other trace elements. I don't put a whole lot of stock in the whole "trace element" thing, but the blocks do seem to keep everyone happy and growing. <Agreed about the trace elements, but I am in favor of "balanced" additives like this one that contain the proper ratio of major elements like Magnesium, etc.  Sounds like a convenient product that is serving you well....  Don't fix what ain't broke!> Thanks again, Jim Jensen <Always glad to!  Adam>

-Dead portions of hammer- Hello again, I just have a quick question for your fine staff.  I have a three fingered HAMMER CORAL.  Unfortunately, one of the fingers seems to have died.  Their is no sign of life.  However, the other two fingers are flourishing.  Can I cut off the dead finger or what would you suggest. <Absolutely, provided there is no live tissue connecting the dead head to the live ones.> Their is some brown slime starting to form on the dead finger. <Definitely remove this dead one, it would also be good practice to give the other heads an iodine dip, do a search on this site for info how. Good luck! -Kevin> Thanks again for your hard work and dedication, Jose

More on coral meltdown Hi there, a good friend of mine has a nasty problem.  In about 24 hours a huge frogspawn melted down to the skeleton, forming this brown goo that smells like death (brown jelly disease?).  All hammers and frogspawn in the tank seem to be affected to some degree (there are about 5-6 of them), the brains and Blastomussa

Dying Frogspawn Bob, Help! About a week ago I purchased a frogspawn coral and installed him my tank. Within two hours he was fully open and beautiful.  Over the last two days, however, he has degenerated:  two of his four polyps weren't opening all the way, and today, one of them has turned brown and dissolved away, leaving an empty husk.  As far as I can tell, my water is in good shape - nitrites and nitrates undetectable, phosphates < 0.2 ppm, calcium just over 400, alkalinity over 4, pH at 8.3 - what can I do to help this guy? I read over the FAQs about Euphyllias, and I see you recommend lowered S.G. malachite green baths, does this apply in my case?  I don't want him to lose any more polyps - and can the one he lost ever grow back? <Yes, this specimen is a prime candidate for this treatment. Do it soon, as in NOW. And yes, the lost tissue (and more) will grow (back).>Should I move him closer or farther away from the lights? <After effecting the dip, yes and apply a bit more circulation> Could the one blue striped mushroom I've installed since his purchase cause a problem? <Really only if it is/was placed very near the specimen> Any help you can give would be greatly appreciated. Josh <Bob Fenner>

Hammer coral Hi Bob; I have a green hammer coral that I received as a gift, Much to my dismay. I've only had the thing for about a week and the tissue is falling out of the skeleton. My water parameters are good but my nitrates may be a little high for coral, but not skyrocketed. Any way I've heard of disinfecting coral using iodine. I have Kent concentrated Iodine on hand, any idea of how I would prepare and conduct a dip or bath using this product for the coral in case this is bacterial related? <I do endorse, use, train collectors/wholesalers to use iodide (this is what it is...) solutions (pretty concentrated compared to "supplementing" dosages) and hyposaline solution (dilute seawater) on arrival for such purposes... But not once the specimens reach this far, long. Please do read over the FAQs files on Stony Corals, particularly the family Caryophylliidae (this is a member of that family) archived on the site: www.wetwebmedia.com on the use of malachite dips in these cases.... Have seen MANY such cases resolved with such treatments. Do this NOW. Bob Fenner>
Re: hammer coral
hi again; to dip the hammer coral would a Meth blue dip or Quick cure containing 99.20% formaldehyde and .75% malachite green work? <Just the malachite, no formalin/formaldehyde... as detailed on the pages you've been referred to. Bob Fenner>

Anchor Coral Regeneration Bob, I recently used your malachite dipping method to stop a bacterial infection in my anchor coral. I believe that the infection has been stopped because the coral is no longer receding. Will this guy re-grow the tentacles that were lost while the infection was going on?  <Yes... likely so. In time> If so, is there anything I can do to help the process or do I have to just let Mother Nature take its course? <A bit of both. Keep your system optimized and stable... an eye on alkalinity, biomineral  content, use iodide and vitamin prep.s about once a week...> Thanks for your help and the cure! Chad <You're welcome my friend. Congratulations on your success. Bob Fenner>

Corals are starting to die off. I have power compacts for lighting (4 55 watts bulbs) I just changed my bulbs about 2 months ago. As for corals, I have: colt open brain  green torch frog spawn hammer finger leather  several mushroom/polyps My test results: PH 8.2 specific gravity 1.022 ammonia 0 nitrite 0 nitrate 1.0 Phos 0.2 Ca 450ppm Sections of my hammer and torch would look brown and the next day it would just fall off. I don't know if that made any sense. the only fish I have are a lawnmower blenny and sleeper goby.  I clean the glass once a week. I also do a 20% water change once a month. I use B-Ionic, Iodide, Reef Vital DNA and Strontium. >> A few things might be at work here... the most likely of two are a low alkalinity condition (less than 3 milliequivalents per liter), which I would get a test kit for and counter your calcium concentration by buffering it (the alk.) up... and lowering your calcium (this will just happen in reactions to the increased alk.) to maybe 350-400 ppm. The other is a bacterial infection... I would remove the affected corals (genus Euphyllia) and dip them in a slightly lowered specific gravity (just a couple of thousandths) of your seawater with a bit of freshwater added... and a "dose" of malachite green (from your fish store... sold under this name and other generic) of about twice the labeled concentration... for ten/fifteen minutes... and toss/throw away the dip water. This is a standard practice in the trade/business of ornamental aquatics with these corals. Bob Fenner
Re: Corals are starting to die off.
> Hi Bob, you were right. My alkalinity was very low. Test kit shows about 1.8 (I believe it is supposed to be about 3.5). I am using a Kent product to increase it. My question is as follows: > Like I told you, my coralline algae has been turning white but over the last few weeks I have also notice a very slight change in the tissue on the side of my Anchor coral. It has "receded" very slightly. Could that also have been because of the low alkalinity? As I previously told you all my other parameters are great including Calcium of 450. > Will that tissue on the side of the Anchor coral grow back with the improved alkalinity? He is still opening beautifully. Could something else cause the slight receding.  > Thank you as always for all your help. > Andrew >> Ah good, glad to hear the confirmation re your low alkalinity... and yes, the symptoms you describe for the Coral could be directly and solely due to the lack of same... And I would proffer a short term suggestion for quickly boosting alkalinity... do add about a teaspoon per ten gallons of system water of baking soda (yes, sodium bicarbonate),,, and re-check the measure each day till the reading is at least the three and a half milliequivalents per liter that you mention... And yes, the animal may easily re-attach/grow the removed tissue, Bob Fenner 

 as well as a couple of softies seem ok for now.  Corals were dipped in Tech-D last night and will be freshwater dipped today.  He put in additional skimming, carbon and a PolyFilter.  We're looking for advice on how to avoid a total meltdown. >Thanks Stephen ><Besides what you've done....water changes, water changes, water changes.  Like 10-25% a day.  I wouldn't do anymore stressful treatments.  Test water parameters and make sure they are within the norm. Also watch temp...this is most likely environmental. QT all new corals.  Best of luck!  Craig> <Hi Steven, I looked into this further (in Anthony Calfo's great book!) and he advises removing all infected corals from the display in a plastic container, then removing any infected, dead and necrotic tissue with a stream of water and then with a toothbrush down to healthy tissue, then placement in a QT tank, perhaps with iodine/Lugol's in known doses.  As a last resort fragging/separation of healthy tissue from infected. Discard all operation/rinse/cleaning water and lift corals from display in container to prevent stress and contamination. Iodine may be used as a dip and in the working containers. Time is of the essence. Good luck, Craig>

Hammer Coral Problem  <Hi Ken, MacL here> Sorry. <No biggie> I hit the send button prior to getting the message ready.  Quick question for you. I have a problem with my hammer coral bailing out of the skeleton. <Not good at all.> I have good water quality with 0 nitrates, PH at 8.4, calcium at 380-400 no ammonia and no nitrates.  I have been using a Kent calcium additive and I am wondering if perhaps I over did it in the past week. I put 1 teaspoon in on two separate days. I also feed the corals brine shrimp/small arctic shrimp (don't remember the name) combination about every other day.  Last night the hammer looked like it was feeding well but then this morning I noticed that it was bailing out. <Sounds possibly like an infection to me. Is it also getting any kind of jelly looking thing? Honestly sounds like it might need to be dipped. I personally have had good luck with coral reef dip by SeaChem for a commercial product and there's a great dip listed on the WetWebMedia website.> Any ideas? Thanks, Ken <Try the dip on WetWebMedia Ken and good luck! MacL>

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