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FAQs about Caryophyllid Coral Predators, Pests

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,
FAQs on Euphylliid Disease by Category: Diagnosing, Environmental (Pollution/Poisoning, Lighting...), Nutritional, Social (Allelopathy), Trauma, Pathogenic (Infectious, Parasitic, Viral) Treatments 
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,

Worms, crustaceans, snails... That can and should be excluded via isolation, aka quarantine on arrival

MANY other Cnidarian groups, species: Anemones of all kinds, Zoanthids, Corallimorpharians... other Scleractinians... That should be co-introduced via mixing of waters AFTER determination of health in quarantine twixt the main and isolation systems.


Mystery hitchhikers on my frogspawn     2/10/17
Hello WWM crew!
I was referred here from Bayou Reef keepers by Jordan Stari.
<Ahh! Hi to Jordan. Hope to catch up with him at this year's MACNA there>
He recommended that I post this query specifically directed toward Lynn Z since she’s the invert expert. I have a mystery beastie on the base of two of my branching frogspawn heads. When they first showed up, they were so small I could barely tell they were something other than part of the coral. Then I started noticing they had kind of a corkscrew antennae or some other protrusion. I thought they might be some kind of Nudibranch, but even with a magnifying glass, it was difficult to pick out any distinguishing characteristics. I searched every site and message board I could find to no avail. They are right at the boundary between the soft tissue and the skeleton of each head and seem to retract into the soft tissue if I shine a light on them for more than a few seconds. When I got home from work today, one of them had come out far enough that it was ~1/2 – 3/4” long. I took some pictures, but only one of them is small enough in file size to comply with WWM picture requirements and it is hard to see anything on that one. I have attached it as a first look. If it’s okay, I would like to post the best quality picture that shows it pretty well.
Please let me know if that is ok.
<Yes; though; I don't see what you're referring to. Lynn?>
I have had these corals for about two months and they have grown probably 2-3 times the size they were when I got
them in that time. Two of the heads have begun to split. Until about 4 days ago, all seemed to be well. All of the corals in the tank have been given a 10 minute CoralRx Pro dip before being placed in the tank. I’m thinking that since they emerged from within the soft tissue, maybe they were there from the beginning and survived the dip.
In the pic, the dark vertical shape on the left is the branch of the skeleton. The offending beastie is the whitish thing running parallel to the branch (it is roughly ½-3/4” in length). As I said, I have better pics, but did not want to run afoul of the posting rules.
<Do post elsewhere on the Net and send along links please>
Please let me know if you know what this is, whether I should worry about it, and how I can get rid of it if necessary.
<Like grading school papers, "When in doubt, count it out", I'd vacuum, remove this>
Thanks in advance for the help!
Kevin Drane
<Have sent on to LynnZ for her input. Bob Fenner>


Re: Mystery hitchhikers on my frogspawn - 2/11/2017
Thanks for the quick response. I have a couple of pics posted on the Bayou Reefkeeping forum. Here's a link:
Euphyllia eating Nudis?
<Mmm; the little white bits right? I don't see rhinophores, gills on these... Look more like Scutus... a snail on what little I make out... white shells (could be overgrown), and black feet... No way for you to remove, shoot and send a better close up pic?>
It seems to be hiding within the soft tissue of the coral because there are times when you can't see it at all and then it just appears. Thanks again for the help!
<The better pic please. Bob Fenner>

Re: Mystery hitchhikers on my frogspawn - 2/11/2017
Actually, the long white thing that is extending down from the base of the soft tissue is one organism. The white bits are part of it.
<Don't see it mate>
There is no shell and it's all white. While it was extended out like that last night, I tried to suck it out with a turkey baster and it held fast. I then tried grab it with some tweezers and it still wouldn't come loose. It ended up breaking in two. The part that was still attached retracted up into the coral's soft tissue and I haven't seen it since. The part that broke off
kind of fell apart and the pieces were very small helical bits maybe 2-3 mm long. My fire fish ate ended up eating the pieces. Now I'm worried that it is going to die inside the soft tissue and as it rots will poison the coral. I'm debating whether I want to break the heads free from the rock and dipping them with Bayer.
<Have you considered fragging this colony? I might. B>
Re: Mystery hitchhikers on my frogspawn - 2/11/2017

Thanks for the quick response.
<<Hi Kevin and Bob. Sorry I’m a late arrival on this topic!>>
I have a couple of pics posted on the Bayou Reefkeeping forum. Here's a link: Euphyllia eating Nudis? http://www.bayoureefkeeping.com/forums/topic/16109-euphyllia-eating-nudis/#comment-191958
<Mmm; the little white bits right? I don't see rhinophores, gills on these... Look more like Scutus... a snail on what little I make out...white shells (could be overgrown), and black feet... No way for you to remove, shoot and send a better close up pic?>
<<Unfortunately, I can’t see enough detail in the photos to determine exactly what the subject is either. Offhand, it looks like a typical looping mass of Cerith snail eggs - I’ve seen these before on Euphyllids. Please see the following link for an example (bear in mind that these looping masses can be variably arranged): http://www.nano-reef.com/topic/270550-whats-on-my-frogspawn/ . Do you have any of these snails in your system? If so, and this is an egg mass, the multitude of loops should start breaking up and detaching within a few days.>>
It seems to be hiding within the soft tissue of the coral because there are times when you can't see it at all and then it just appears.
<<If this is an egg mass, perhaps it’s acting as an irritant? Honestly, I’m not a coral expert so I’m not sure if it’s possible for the soft tissue on a euphyllid’s stalk to react by trying to alternately envelop then repel an irritant.>>
Thanks again for the help!
<The better pic please. Bob Fenner>
<<You’re very welcome. I just wish I could have given you a concrete answer. Ditto what Bob said regarding a photo (if possible!). Take care, Lynn Zurik>>
<Thank you Lynn. B>

Re: Mystery hitchhikers on my frogspawn: Mesenterial Filaments - 2/11/2017
<Greetings, Kevin>
I do not have any Cerith snails
<There goes that theory! On the plus-side, I believe I have an answer for you.>
and I've never seen snail eggs move around like this.
<No, any movement would have to have been caused by something else: water current, hatching individuals, instability/movement of whatever the mass was deposited upon, or perhaps a critter of some sort wriggling about inside the mass.>
Unfortunately, I can't get another picture because after I tried to pull it off, it retracted back up into the soft tissue of the coral.
<Yep, this is normal (see below).
There is no question in my mind that it is some kind of separate organism. I have posted another picture to the forum- this time with annotation.
<Yes, I see – thanks. After thinking about this a bit more this morning, I started wondering if what we were seeing was simply part of the coral itself, and that was the ticket. All those loopy structures (that look like guts) did indeed come from inside the coral. They’re mesenterial filaments that, thanks to stinging cells/nematocysts, are used to capture/digest, as well as fight off any threat/intrusion into a coral’s “space”. It could be that the coral detected a threat (physical or chemical), and deployed the filaments. I see a small collection of vermetid gastropods to the left of the filaments that may be at least part of the issue. Vermetids send out sticky strands to catch food particles that drift by. Those strands could be contacting the coral’s soft tissue and irritating it. I ran across a photo at WWM that looks very similar: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/carydisf7.htm . Please see the query at the bottom of the page titled “Worm infestation… no -12/28/2007”, as well as a WWM search for mesenterial filaments, Vermetids.>
I appreciate the time you have spent trying to help me.
<No problem, I hope this helps. By the way, if you decide to get rid of the Vermetids, you can do so my either breaking them off with tweezers at the base (do not use bare hands – the tubes are brittle and very sharp!), or seal the tube openings with some gel-type Cyano glue.>
Hopefully the new picture will help you see it better.
<I think we’re good to go! Take care, Lynn Zurik>
Thank you Lynn. B <Always a pleasure, Bob!>
Follow-up Re: Mystery hitchhikers on my frogspawn: Mesenterial Filaments - 2/11/2017

Awesome! Thanks for the diagnosis.
<You are most welcome.>
Jordan was right that you know your stuff.
<Well, we all learned something this time! All I knew was that things weren’t adding up, critter-wise, so I followed a hunch and it paid off.>
You just saved the coral from the trauma of being broken off the rock and dipped again.
I just knew it was some kind of parasite.
<I can certainly understand why.>
Unfortunately, in my haste to keep a parasite from harming my coral, I tore some of its mesentery trying to remove it. Hopefully it recovers!
<I would think so.>
It all makes perfect sense now that I put all the pieces together. They had (very small) Vermetids on them when I bought them as frags. The coral and the Vermetids have both grown considerably since I got them.
<Yay, regarding the coral! As for the Vermetids, they thrive/multiply in high nutrient conditions so do keep an eye on this. Same goes for what appears to be some Spionid or Chaetopterid worms to the right of the mesenterial filaments. In silhouette, you can see a number of paired feeding tentacles (“palps”). Although not visible in the photo, these palps extend from hardened mucus tubes covered with sand grains, bits of substrate, and/or shell. These worms are typically harmless/beneficial particulate feeders/detritivores but when numerous can irritate corals, particularly Zoanthids.>
In the last couple weeks, the coral has not been extending as much as it had been. Now I realize it was due to the Vermetids growing as much as they have. I will try scraping them off now that I know they are causing irritation.
<Good idea. Just be careful. You do not want to get a nasty infection after cutting yourself on those sharp little shells!>
Thanks again!
<It was a pleasure! Take care, Lynn Zurik>

yellow mesh starfish; Euphyllia pred. follow-up         8/7/15
i think i have found who has been eating my hammer head and frogspawn.. i can be wrong but i think not. can you confirm my suspicions?. it looks like a piece of hammer head coral dangling from the starfish.
<I agree...
<Don't see references pointing to Nardoa novaecaledoniae feeding on corals in the literature though.
Bob Fenner>
Re: yellow mesh starfish        8/7/15

i was told they are reef safe but this shows different. i am going to isolate him and see what happens. thanks for the quick response. i truly appreciate it also your knowledge.
<Thank you for sharing. BobF>


white bugs on Euphyllia       1/2/14
Hi Bob,
I have been trying to search information on your site about white “bugs” that seem to specifically infest Euphyllia species, but haven’t found anything.
<Any chance of a decent pic?>
A Google search has found a few threads from various aquarists and there’s disagreement on whether they are harmful or not.
<Well; the planet does "show", "exhibit" may be better, all range, degrees of commensalism, predation et al. relations twixt species, individuals>
Some say that they disappeared on their own, others say they killed their corals.
<I can believe/imagine all>
They are not the “typical” copepods that tanks typically have visible on the glass, and are too small for me to capture on my camera (I tried),
<Maybe a friend has a cheapy scope... there are some really spiffy ones you can order for cheap that will allow imaging to be recorded>
 but this link shows a decent picture of them http://www.ultimatereef.net/forums/showthread.php?t=473550 .
<Uhh, look like little white zots... could be most anything...>
I have two paradivisas, one ancora and one glabrescens. I mostly see these bugs on the Torch, though I wouldn’t say it’s being swarmed or anything. They are not very active, some crawl slowly, some seem to be partly imbedded into the coral...perhaps feeding on the coral?!
<... what would Doug Adams say/write? "Don't panic">
 I have seen the odd one on the divisas, never the ancora. All corals seem well with the exception of the Torch, which has been slowly receding over several months. Not sure if the recession is related, as I have had some recession issues with some other LPS species which do not show any kind of “bugs”...so I’m not sure if there’s a cause and effect here, or purely coincidence. Are you familiar with these critters, and can you tell me whether they are a problem and should be treated somehow, or harmless?
<... Are you in China? If the US, UK, I'd go w/ not guilty till proven so... BobF> 
Re: white bugs on Euphyllia   1/3/14

Hi Bob! I'm in Toronto, Canada, so I will assume not guilty until proven otherwise. Interestingly some hobbyists wrote that they treated with dog heart worm medication to kill them, and their Euphyllias rebounded and started looking better.
<This might (well) not be a cause-effect event. Beware of anecdotal accounts>
They're simply too small to get a good photo with my current camera, and I don't have access to a scope...there are other photos on line and even a video on YouTube that someone made to show them, but in all cases they just look like white dots. I had noticed them for months before realizing they crawled and were thus alive. For now I will just continue to monitor. Thanks again. Dave
<Such small critters tend to come and go in captive systems. I would not over-react. Cheers, BobF>

Frogspawn ID and compatibility 4/3/12
Hi crew!
<Hello Jennifer>
I bought a frogspawn about 6 weeks ago. After QT it went into the main tank. All was good (attached pic) then all of the sudden it closed up and has not opened back up (attached pic). This has been going on for about 2 weeks. All of my other corals are doing well. I was advised that it could be the coral beauty picking on it so I put it in the refugium hoping it could recover but to no avail. Water parameters: Ammonia - 0, Nitrite - 0, Nitrate -0, Phosphate 0,
<Corals do benefit from the presence of low nitrate and phosphate levels.>

Calcium 420 (a little high, don't know why),
<How about magnesium, equally important.>
pH 8 in am, 8.3 in p.m., salinity 1.024. My question is could this be coral warfare? The other inhabitants are: Pulsing Xenia which was introduced into the tank about a week after the frogspawn, 2 ricordae <Ricordea> mushrooms, and green star polyps. I have a 55 gallon with a 30 gal refugium, 60 lbs of live rock and run protein skimmer full time.
Should I put this guy in a hospital tank and see if it is the other corals affecting it?
<Actually, the Frogspawn is the most aggressive coral amongst your corals. The star polyps (Briareum) are rather peaceful while the Ricordea is semi-aggressive. Have you actually witnessed the Coral Beauty picking on the Frogspawn? My other concern would be light. You made no mention of lighting and Frogspawn (Euphyllia paradivisa) appreciate bright indirect lighting. Good water flow, preferably wavemaker style, also encourages polyp extension.
Euphyllids are good indicators of water quality and failure to open may indicate less than perfect water conditions. Good water parameters are not necessarily indicative of good water quality. If not already doing so, I suggest dosing with iodine/dide. Other necessary elements such as strontium may be missing as well. Weekly water changes will supplement these elements back into the system. Do read here and related articles/FAQs found in the header.
Thank you once again!!!
<You're welcome. James (Salty Dog)>

Re Frogspawn ID and compatibility 4/4/12
Hi James!
<Hello Jennifer>
I don't have a magnesium test kit but I've ordered one online, should be here soon.
I do weekly water changes about 12 gallons a week.
I have a new AquaticLife Quad T5 running UV <UVL?> bulbs, 2 actinic and (2) 10,000k. I had located the frogspawn to a little alcove if you will but it was getting a fair amount of water flow.
<With your lighting you could place the Frogspawn most anywhere. Actinics offer some benefit but you would be much better off with three 10K lamps. I am assuming you are using the UVL Aquasun or Actinic White lamps. Both of these lamps more closely duplicate the wavelengths corals best respond to. See attached chart.>
I have 2 Koralia 750 and 2 Koralia 550. I did adjust the water pumps thinking that might have been the problem and eventually I did move the frogspawn to a different location in the tank (but still in the sand) thinking that lighting could have been the problem and it didn't seem to help at all.
I have not seen the coral beauty nipping at the frogspawn. He's fairly well behaved when it comes to the corals. I do put a drop of Lugol's iodine about every 2 weeks.
<I would do three drops every week.>
If it could be water conditions why are my other corals doing so well?
<Likely because Euphylliids are more sensitive to water quality than most corals.>
Should I take this coral back to the LFS?
<May want to run some good quality carbon in the system first and see if there is any improvement before returning the coral. Which brand of salt are you using?
I have had good results using Tropic Marin. The new improved Red Sea Salt is pretty good as well.>
Thank you again!
<You're welcome. James (Salty Dog)>
Re Frogspawn ID and compatibility 4/4/12

Hello again James!
Yes I am running the UVL Aquasun bulbs.
<That particular lamp closely matches the desired PUR wavelength that corals respond best to.>
I will seriously consider getting a third Aquasun bulb. I'm wanting to get more into corals so I want to be sure to have the proper lighting first.
<May even consider four Aquasun lamps. Would be much better and increase PAR value.>
I will increase the Lugol's. I do run activated carbon but I will change it out. I've been using Instant
Ocean but I've been worried about the quality lately. I check the pH about a day or so after mixing and it's only at 8.0. My RO water is 7.7.
<I got away from that brand a couple of years ago. Too much inconsistency in their mix.>
Also after I mix it there is like this brown foamy scum on the top.
<Wouldn't be from the salt. Do you clean the mixing container good after use. May be dust getting in the container if left open.>
I've been researching changing the brand but I'm concerned about conversion problems.
<Changing 10 gallons of water with a different brand salt every week should cause no problems.
I've been through this a couple of times in the last five years.>
I know I've seen an article on your website on how to change over the salt mix. Thanks
again James!
<You're welcome. James (Salty Dog)>
Re Frogspawn ID and compatibility 4/3/12

Hello Mr. Dog!
<Hello Jennifer.>
Really...4 Aquasun bulbs..cool!
<Would be your best option for a four lamp fixture.>
I've read lighting FAQs and everyone seems to run actinics. But if the corals can live without them so can I.
<The actinic wavelength is present in these lamps. You don't notice it as much because it is masked by the other wavelengths.>
I'm assuming this will also increase the coral options as well once I get this situation under control.
<It will increase your intensity in the PUR wavelengths.>
I do wash out the container maybe every 2 or 3 months. The scum doesn't show up until I mix in the salt and I only take off the lid on the day I am doing a water change. The container I keep the top off water in does not get this brown scum in it. So which brand, Tropic Marin or Red Sea, do you recommend?
<I've been happy with Tropic Marin. It's a bit pricey but you get what you pay for. It does contain every element found in sea water.>
Thanks again, James!
<You're welcome. James (Salty Dog)>
Re Frogspawn ID and compatibility 4/4/12

Hello again!
<Hi Jennifer>
Jeesh you are fast!
<Fastest gun east of Tucson.>
Awesome...4 Aquasun bulbs it is! I will start changing over to Tropic Marin. Thank you for all of your advice!
<You're welcome. James (Salty Dog)>

Branching Hammer Coral Problem 1/27/12
Hello Wet Web Media,
This question pertains to a Euphyllia parancora that I have had for 5 years.
Purchased with 2 branches, the hammer coral lived 4 years in a 65 gallon reef tank. The hammer moved into a 150 gallon reef tank a year ago and now has 20+ branches. I have had no major problems. All corals are growing.
A few months ago, I noticed the tissue which grows on the stony branches getting darker on one of the 2 original branches.
<I see this>

This darker tissue is spreading to cover up a few of the polyps and is spreading down the live rock. Please look closing at photo (photo on its side taken at night so you can see under polyps) and note the brown tissue spreading down the rock and covering the lower part of the coral. Is this the dreaded brown jelly
<Mmm, maybe>
Yikes! If so, I should remove live rock it is now attached to and then remove the affected branches...
<I'd leave in place... check all parameters, dose full-strength w/ iodide-ate. IF the colony continues to disimprove, I would move it to another system>
150 gallon reef tank
30 gallon sump
Aqua C skimmer
15 gallon refugium (plan on doubling size soon)
3 power heads
Orphek LEDs
10% saltwater changes each week faithfully
81F stable temperature
1.025 specific gravity
440 calcium (working on this)
Alkalinity between 9-11 (working stability)
Nitrates 0
Euphyllia paradivisa
Euphyllia divisa (huge and directly above the paradivisa)
<Could be this is poisoning the E. parancora>
Green Corallimorphs
<Or these>
<Or this>
Fungia paumotensis
Caulastrea Furcata
Cynarina Lacrymalis
Montipora Capricornis
Seriatopora hystrix
Clove Polyps
Derasa clam
Crocea clams
Red Legged Hermits (will these prey on snails for food?) <Can, yes>
Blue Legged Hermits
Banggai Cardinal Pair
Shrimp Goby
Red Sea Sail Fin Tang
Ocellaris Clownfish Pair
PJ Cardinal
Brittle Star (very large, will this prey on dragonets?) <Perhaps>
Serpent Star
Thank you so much!
<Welcome. Bob Fenner>

Re: Branching Hammer Coral Problem-encrusting dark sponge? 1/28/12
Hi Bob,
Thank you for the advice. However, I just couldn't wait it out...so I dismantled the whole tank to remove the afflicted live rock and hammer coral. The live rock went into a bucket and I drove to the LFS with the dark tissue encrusted hammer. I learned that the dark tissue was not slimy (as I imagined brown jelly to be), but sponge like. The dark tissue peeled off like the skin of an orange and had no smell. It must be some sort of encrusting sponge. ?
<Mmm, maybe... do you have a microscope? Don't know how much detail we'd expect to see>
I peeled, scrubbed with a toothbrush, discarded the dead branches of the hammer, fragmented the good branches and soaked them in Lugo. The newly fragmented hammer branches are relocated in a high current area where I can retrieve and scrub if/when the sponge returns. All the polyps are extended and look good.
<And you, BobF>

Critter ID'¦Barnacle, Maybe -- 11/04/10
Hi Crew,
I don't have a picture yet and am not sure if I can get one. I just bought a torch (Euphyllia) and there is something strange in middle of the tentacles. It is bullet shaped, white, very thin, about 3/16th of an inch wide and tall. When it opens a little spring like thing comes out and in. That is best as I can describe it. Maybe an alien space ship. Doesn't look like a living thing, looks more mechanical.
<<A barnacle perhaps'¦have a read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/cirripediafaqs.htm >>
<<Welcome'¦ EricR>>
e: Critter ID'¦Barnacle, Maybe - 11/05/10
Right on, it really is neat to watch but I think I will get rid of it.
<<Not likely necessary'¦ Harmless if not beneficial -- and not destined to survive long-term in home aquaria. EricR>>

Unusual Frogspawn disease or parasite 10/14/10
Hi There,
I have 2 huge frogspawn corals in my tank for at about 2 years. Recently both corals started doing poorly. I noticed a bunch of very tiny "creatures" crawling near the mouth of most of the coral's heads. So I remove the corals and bathed them in "Revive" first, then "Lugol's". I still see the tiny creatures walking around! What should I do next?
<Mmm, you need to have a positive identification to at least the phylum level... worm/flatworm, crustacean here, before proceeding>
Should I use another chemical, if so which one?
<... depends on what this issue is caused by>
Also is there a fresh water dip for corals please? If so how, long should I deep the corals in fresh water and how often please? Do you think that would kill them?
I have never seen such "creatures" on any of my corals before and they only like to live on the frogspawn, all the other corals such as the hammerhead, sunny corals, colt, polyps, etc... are happy and have no bugs crawling on them.
Thank you so much for your help.
<Well, you can use the search tool on WWM re... or just read through here:
and the linked files in the series (above). Bob Fenner>

Removing Bristle Worm From Bubble Coral 7/8/09
<Hello from Key Largo!>
I have a bubble coral that I purchased 10 months ago. It was injured and only had a few bubbles on it when I bought it (they said it had a 50/50 chance).
<Impressive you've managed to keep it alive this long!>
Anyway I read up about them and started to target feed it.
<This will benefit this coral. I would also recommend you soaking your food in Selcon as well.>
It started to look better. About two months ago it began to grow a new skeleton.
<Very good.>
So far so good. Then last night I saw 2 bristle worms poke out from the skeleton underneath the bubbles. First I was wondering if they are eating the bubble coral?
<Likely not. Generally bristle worms eating dying/decaying matter, not living tissues.>
Second, How do I get them out of there without causing damage to the bubble coral.
<I would likely not remove, you can observe the coral, but even if you see tissue loss, that does not necessarily indicate that the bristle worms are doing the damage, more likely they are doing a beneficial service of removing the damaged tissue.>
Your help would be greatly appreciated. I have a 180 gallon tank with 1 coral banded shrimp, 1 fire shrimp,
<I would add another so they might pair up and the spawn can feed your tank.>
1 blue hippo,1 kole tang,1 clown, 2 mandarins,1 Flameback angel,1 Foxface, and 1 yellow tang.
<Watch all those tangs!>
Also have many snails and hermits, and 2 feather dusters.

Euphyllia Eating Flatworm? Polyclad -- 4/30/09
<Hi there, Cath!>
I've lost several of my Euphyllia corals in the last couple of months.
This morning, I've found what I think is a kind of flatworm on many of my frog, torch and ancora pieces. With a close look and more attention, I saw that all my Euphyllia are literally infested by this 'little' (some are up to ½') beast.
There are also a lot of yellow eggs around them. Here is, in a joined piece, a picture of the beast. The shot was not taken by me, but by a fellow reefer of my area who has the same problem. What exactly is this flatworm?
<Looks like a Polyclad of some sort to me (see link below for more info).>
Is there a way to get rid of them?
<Manual/diligent removal of all visible worms/eggs. In addition, check any and all other corals (and rockwork if possible) for further evidence and remove any you come across. I'd also put the corals, one at a time, in small tub or container with tank water, and using something like a turkey baster, blast any areas of dead skeleton/rockwork with water to hopefully dislodge any unseen juveniles.>
I've made a lot of searches and haven't found anything about it.
<That's understandable. I looked everywhere and only found a couple of unconfirmed hobbyist reports related to Euphyllids and suspected Polyclad predation. Furthermore, I was unable to find any documentation, anywhere, confirming actual predation of any coral species by these worms at all. That's not to say that it's not possible however. Apparently, there's a lot of information still needing to be discovered/revealed regarding these large worms. The general consensus is that they're all predatory - consuming various colonial or sessile organisms such as Tunicates, Bryozoans, bivalves, barnacles, etc, as well as other small invertebrates such as amphipods, small snails, Polychaete worms, and even other flatworms. Also, some evidently feed on algae, especially diatoms, but only as juveniles. The problem with this situation is that unless you've actually seen the worms eating live coral tissue, you have to consider that their presence may be secondary/incidental. Perhaps the corals are dying due to one or several other reasons -- for instance environmental issues (water chemistry, chemical warfare/allelopathy, etc), or due to fish/crabs, etc picking at them. The culprit could even be another type of flatworm (perhaps Acoels?) or something else entirely. The Polyclad flatworms could be there to prey on the real predator(s), or other incidental/harmless amphipods, etc, that have congregated to feast on the sudden bloom of algae and/or dying coral tissue. Admittedly, an infestation level of anything near a damaged coral doesn't look good, but I'd rule out other possibilities just to be sure. I have to admit, if I were in your shoes, I'd likely err on the side of caution and remove as many Polyclads as I could. Had there been just one or two, I'd have left it/them, but in the case of many -- bye bye!
I've got some links for you to read through. Here's a similar situation: FAQ titled 'Euphyllia Health issues / hitch hiker ID... likely allelopathy, env. 6/9/08', at this link: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/carydisf7.htm
Allelopathy issues: http://wetwebmedia.com/cnidcomppt3.htm
Flatworms: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/flatworms.htm  >
Thank you!
<You're very welcome! Take care, LynnZ>

Frogspawn Parasite, or just feeding, barnacle 04/02/09
Picked up a Branching Frogspawn from our LFS today, There are four heads, and directly in between two of the heads is a round piece of skeleton that sticks out about 1/4 inch farther then the other parts of the skeleton.
There is a hole on this piece, and periodically, little "feathers" come out, spin a little bit, then retract.
<This sounds like a barnacle. A picture would be helpful to confirm. Some can be trouble depending on their location on the coral.>
It kind of looks like a feather duster, but has only a few, (less than ten) very thin feathers, and they are arranged in a sort of crescent shape, not even a half circle. They really don't seem to be affected by light that
much. Is this a parasite, or is it a part of the coral and the way it eats or something. Thanks for your continued help.
<I don't know if I'd call it a "parasite" per se, but if it is a barnacle (and if it grows too big in the wrong place) it can cause some annoyance to the coral. I wouldn't try to remove it at this point though. Please do try to send a pic.
Sara M.>
Re: Frogspawn Parasite, or just feeding 04/02/09

I have confirmed through pictures online that it is a barnacle, so i should leave it?
<I would remove it IF it is easy to remove. Try breaking it off with a pair of needle-nose pliers. If it comes/breaks off easy, good... if not, I wouldn't go to any extreme measures to remove it.>
If a picture is necessary to tell me if i need to remove it, or to leave it, i can take a pic tomorrow morning when the lights come on. Do barnacles pose any threat to the other members of the tank?
<No. I'm not even entirely sure they cause frogspawn any trouble.
However, I have heard stories (and seen pictures) of barnacles growing in/on the actual polyps, close to the mouths. Some people swear that a barnacle growing in such a place has killed their polyps... but I don't know. I think the barnacles (filter feeders) just grow where they grow, and sometimes it's inconvenient for a coral.>
we have cleaner shrimp, clownfish, mandarin, hermits, all types of snails, open brain, lobos, torch, spaghetti leather, mushrooms, Acros, and pulsating xenias.
Sara M.>

Vermetid Snail Mucus Causing Frogspawn Polyp Ejection? - 11/14/07 Hello Wet Web Media, Since launching my 24g nano earlier this year, I have been an avid reader of your site. Thank you for contributing so much information to the reef-keeping world. <our pleasure, thank you> Your site has helped me to diagnose a problem, but now I need input on how, or whether, to "solve" it. The pride of my tank is a bright florescent frogspawn that I added about five months ago. Since that time, two remarkable things have happened: first, the frogspawn has rapidly divided: from four heads to ten or twelve, and dividing still. <wow> Loving my frogspawn as I do, I was initially enthused by its reproduction. I've placed this coral in a nice space where it can expand and be a real showpiece in the tank. But I recently read a post by Anthony Calfo on this site that described polyp ejection (featuring the clear bubble that has developed on a few of my frogspawn heads as they've split) as a "stress induced strategy of asexual reproduction." <Interesting, but I'm not yet convinced that this is what is happening here with your coral. There is certainly plenty of reason and academic research to support the notion that polyp bail out is a response to stress (and method of asexual reproduction). Polyp bail out is when the soft tissue of a polyp detaches and drops out of the coral skeleton. If conditions are right, these dropped polyps will form new skeleton, and ultimately new colonies. (see "Polyp Bail-Out: An Escape Response to Environmental Stress and a New Means of Reproduction in Corals" by Paul W. Sammarco, published in Marine Ecology, Vol. 10: 57-65, 1982). Thus, if your corals polyps were bailing out, I'd expect them to be dropped from the mother colony and forming new colonies (not forming new branches on the same colony).> This got me thinking about the second remarkable thing that has happened since I acquired the frogspawn: in the last several weeks, a great deal of mucus or webbing has accumulated around the stalk or stem of this coral. Today, with the help of your site, I at last found the likely cause of this mucus: the frogspawn came with what I originally believed to be two tube worms attached, but what I now believe to be Vermetid snails. A small colony of Vermetids has since grown up on the frogspawn and the surrounding live rock. (Perhaps they thrive on the phyto I feed my feather duster.) Recently the web of Vermetid mucus has grown pretty thick on the frogspawn and has even trapped a bit of detritus. <Indeed, this is what the webs are for. If you watch them, you can actually see them "reeling in" these webs to collect their catch.> So now I am wondering: could this mucus web be irritating the frogspawn, resulting in stress-induced asexual reproduction? <It's *possible* but I'm not sure how likely...> If so, is that a bad for the long-term health of the coral? <It's hard to say since I'm still not sure your coral is truly stressed. Could you send in some pictures maybe?> If so, what if anything should I do to prevent it? Would you recommend or advise against an effort to baste or vacuum some of this mucus off the coral? <Likely a futile effort...the snails will just make more.> Dare I attempt to remove the snails? Some sort of dip? <Eek, don't dip it. If you MUST kill the snails, use a needle/syringe to inject vinegar/Kalk/etc. into the tubes.> Thank you very much for your time and expertise. Ben Irvin <De nada, Sara M.>

Attn Sara M: Vermetid Snail Mucus Causing Frogspawn Polyp Ejection? -11/14/07 Hello Sara, Thank you again for your time and insight. So, if polyp ejection or bail out results in a complete detachment of the polyp, that is definitely not what is happening to my frogspawn. However, some, but not all, of the heads that have divided on my frogspawn have developed a clear bubble similar to the one pictured on this page: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/caryfCorlsaqs.htm And the frogspawn does seem to be splitting very fast. <Yeah, this is odd...> Here are two pictures: the first, #546, shows the frogspawn from below. You can the see largest, green worm-like structure, as well as a web of greenish-whitish mucus-like material accumulating on the coral and the rock. <That actually doesn't look like Vermetid snail mucus web. If anything it kind of looks like sponge.> The second, #550, shows the frogspawn from above and behind. You can see more worm-like structures, as well as a web of mucus-like material that is catching detritus. This is the first I've noticed, but there seems to be some algae now growing on the mucus-like material as well. <That wouldn't happen with Vermetid snail mucus.> One last thing that perhaps I should have mentioned earlier: this frogspawn is hosted by two true Percs. <Hmmmm... interesting. Normally I would tell you that clown hosting is very stressful to corals. But this is such an odd thing with your coral growing so fast.> I'll confess, I thought I had it all figured out, so I await your judgment: is this bad for the coral? need it be addressed? if so, how? <I'll be honestly with you, I'm a little baffled myself. Hosting clowns usually stress out corals quite a bit. But if your coral is growing this fast, and if it keeps growing this fast, I'd question how stressed it must be. Typically, stressed corals don't grow so fast (if much at all). Let me ask you, do the clowns feed the coral?> Thanks once again. Ben Irvin <Thanks for writing, Sara M.>

Re: Attn Sara M: Vermetid Snail Mucus Causing Frogspawn Polyp Ejection?-11/14/07 Hi Sara, It's really nice of you to take the time, and I'm happy to respond, even at risk of showing my ignorance, so long as I am not taking up too much of your attention. <Not at all... I quite enjoy hearing from other people about their experiences with their corals.> I, too, wondered about the possibility of a sponge, but was at a loss to explain the worm-like structures in the gauzy, mucusy material. <I know it doesn't look like your typical sponge, but I'm 98% sure it's some kind of sponge. Sponges can be mucus-y, web-like, gauzy... all the things you're describing are not inconsistent with some kinds of sponges.> To give you a better sense of what this looks like, if I saw it growing in my fridge, or in a garbage can, I'd think that it was mold. It is whitish-greenish in color, it clings to (possibly grows on) the adjacent rocks. It has developed worm- or tube-like structures in it. It seems to cling to, or grow on, the lower, green portion of the stalk rather than on the white portions of the heads. Now, ugh, here's my ignorance: in response to your question, do the  clowns feed the coral, my answer is, I don't know what that means. I feed my clowns Mysis and Cyclopeeze every third day, a reduced feeding schedule that is aimed at reducing nutrients in the tank. (I also add a few mg of phyto twice per week.) I occasionally squirt some of the Cyclopeeze in the general direction the frogspawn, but in general I don't target feed it. The clowns stay close to the frogspawn and swim in and around its heads at night. <Just like how clowns bring food to anemones in which they might be hosting, they will often also bring food to any coral in which they are hosting. This is what I mean by "feeding."> Again, I acquired this coral in May. It had four heads when I obtained  it, and I suspect I'll have sixteen soon enough, each heading having split and many now splitting again. <Dear lord that's a lot of splitting. Do you have any pictures of the whole coral colony? I'm just curious to see this thing now.> This coral had been fragged off of a specimen the size of a basketball in my LFS's show tank. So perhaps it is just a quick grower. <Oh cool... I was just going to say that it would be interesting to see if the coral grew just as fast without the clowns (and/or in a different tank). So, if a frag of it in a different tank is growing just as fast, that might tell us something. But I'm afraid I still don't have a real answer for you as to why it's growing so fast. I suppose it could have some sort of genetic "defect" that is causing this. But I honestly don't know. Please do record all this though (take pictures and make notes of observations).> But I want to be sure that whatever is growing/clinging to its trunk is not an irritant. <If you're worried, and if you can easily remove it, go ahead. Better safe than sorry I suppose.> Your insight is greatly appreciated. Ben <De nada, Sara M.>

Re: Attn Sara M: Vermetid Snail Mucus Causing Frogspawn Polyp Ejection? -11/14/07 Hi Sara, Unless you recommend otherwise, I will put some light water pressure (turkey baster) on what we think is the sponge. If it blows off, great, but if it doesn't budge, I probably won't risk any kind of intervention. <Sounds like a good plan. You could also use a pair of tweezers to try and gently pull it off if the baster doesn't work.> Later this evening, I will send you two pics of the coral, one opened and one closed. <Cool, thanks!> Have I told you that I appreciate your expertise? <Hehe, yes, and thank you again for sharing with us.> Ben <Best, Sara M.>

Re: Attn Sara M: Vermetid Snail Mucus Causing Frogspawn Polyp Ejection? -11/14/07 Thanks for the advice, Sara. During a regularly scheduled water change this evening, I attempted first to suction and later to blow this unidentified material off the frogspawn. I was able to remove a little of the detritus and what looked like a bit of brownish hair algae, but the mystery material stayed put. So, since you haven't identified it as fatal coral-killing death stuff, I'm going to let it be. <Yeah, I'd just let it go for now. Most sponges don't pose any real threat to stony corals.> I've attached two pix: the first, #556, shows the whole coral as it's  beginning to retract for the evening. For scale, the whole thing cuts an arc a  little bit bigger than a soft ball. <Thanks for the pics, looks like a healthy coral. :-)> The second pic, #566, shows the coral closed up a bit. I had hoped to  show you a picture of the coral closed all the way, so that you could distinguish the separating heads, but the frogspawn doesn't seem inclined to close up tight tonight. But, just for example, the two heads at the far right of the picture have each developed two mouths and the splits seem imminent. Likewise, on the far left, what appears to be one big head is actually four. It's really been amazing to watch. <Indeed, very interesting.> But so long as it is not an unhealthy response, I'm happy! <Corals are still so mysterious to us humans. All I can really say is that the coral looks plenty healthy. I'm not going to promise you that there's no chance this accelerated splitting isn't a result of some kind of stress. But I don't have any reason to say it is either. And even if it were, it's obviously not killing the coral. So I say just keep doing what you're doing and keep an eye on it.> (Also, in the background of 566, you can see a bit of pink sponge in the vicinity, so maybe this is a sponge-worthy rock.) <LOL... "sponge-worthy"--too funny.> And speaking of rock, you rock. Thanks for all your help. If you ever need a totally noobtastic second opinion, be in touch. <Fabulous, my pleasure.> Best wishes,
Ben Irvin
Sara M.>

Re: Aiptasia and Frogspawn corals  5/31/06 Hello Bob. The return of the Aiptasia, imagine that! A strange thing noticed on the specimen growing among the frogspawn colony: The tentacles closest to the frogspawn polyps are receded and wilted while the pest tries to avoid these polyps. I found several others growing near the top of the tank where the P. skimmer empties into the water. I know why they grow here though only discovered their presence in the passed couple weeks. This is where I put food for dispersion by the flowing water and it sometimes collects near the top of the rock. I purchased what I thought are Peppermint shrimp but I am not so sure as these are larger than usual and the coloration seems more subdued and the specimens darker. These are neat little guys at any rate even if they do happen to be the wrong shrimp. I am still looking for the Berghia but have never seen one offered at any of the LFS(s). Right now I am using my QT tank for control though the one rock is exceptionally large where these pests reside. I may restart my 55 gallon tank and purchase a Copperband butterfly or similar species for control... not sure though as incurring more expenses and maintaining yet another tank might get real old real fast. Maybe if I can repair the light fixture on the 24 gallon (I think the external ballast went) then the new light I got could get moved.... Decisions, decisions.... Sincerely, James Zimmer <<James:  Frogspawn has a powerful sting.  Sounds like it is stronger than the sting of an Aiptasia.  Peppermints are hit or miss.  When I have bought them, only about 1/2 to 2/3 eat Aiptasia.  Berghia are available online.  If you do a search on www.reefcentral.com and other sites you may find people selling them.  Unfortunately, if they work, they will die once they have eaten all the Aiptasia.  Rather than use critters, if you don't have too many, I like to make a batch of Kalk paste and inject it into the Aiptasia holes with the plastic syringe you get with baby medicines.  After you inject it, don't scrape the paste off.  Eventually coralline algae will grow right over it.  Best of luck, Roy>>
Re: Aiptasia and Frogspawn corals
- 06/01/2006 Roy. Thank you for the advice on Aiptasia control. I have used the Kalk paste or slurry also and depending on location or orientation to preferred animals I am sometimes reluctant. Yes, this latest crop will have my work cut for me. I may just use the paste method again for the large rock as it is too much to move into the smaller QT. As for smaller rocks I can move them and train, hopefully, the shrimp to eat the pest anemones. I will not use concentrated Ca(OH)2 near the frogspawn if I can at all help it. Again, thank you. James <<James:  You're welcome.  Based on my experience, the Peppermint Shrimp will either like Aiptasia or not (that's why if you have a big enough tank, it's good to buy 2 to 3 to see who will eat them).  In my best case, one peppermint ate about 100 Aiptasia within about a day.  It was amazing to see him attack them.  He looked like a boxer working on a speed bag.  Unfortunately, for that Peppermint Shrimp a Skunk Cleaner Shrimp attacked him and ate him.  I guess the Skunk Cleaner liked the taste of Aiptasia fed shrimp. If you are careful with the baby medicine syringe and make a thick enough paste, you can inject the paste with a lot of control (like you are decorating a cake).  If some of the paste starts to float off, just disburse it as fast as you can.  In my experience, if a little bit brushes a coral (such as your frogspawn) as it floats buy, it won't hurt anything. Best of luck, Roy>>

Frogspawn health    4/14/06
Hello Crew,
Help, my frogspawn hasn't come out since last Fri. It still has all of its color and doesn't have brown jelly. My water params. on Sat. were:
pH: 7.9
calc: 390
alk: 8.4 dKH
mag: 1140
sg: 1.025
phos: 0
amm: 0
trite: 0
trate: 0
<These numbers are all okay, but...>
I had several corals that withdrew their polyps for a couple of days so I checked for everything. I found a leak in my tank and my top-off worked overtime. My sg went from 1.026 to 1.024 by Thurs. By Fri. I had my sg back up to 1.025. All the other corals are back to normal but the frogspawn has not come out at all. I have noticed the white things circled in the pic and can not figure out what they are. I can't tell whether it's a worm of some type or just the tissue folded up on itself.
<... Mmm, these look like a problem to me... perhaps predatory Nudibranchs...>
Should I dip this coral? Wait it out? Or is it too late?
<Not too late. I definitely would dip this colony. In water of slightly reduced spg. with a triple dose of Lugol's applied to it... for fifteen minutes... and I would siphon out these "worm like" creatures if you see them again>
Any help would be appreciated. Thanks.
<Do read the coverage on the Caryophylliidae posted on WWM. Bob Fenner>

Seeking advice for a problem (disease/parasites?) with my branching hammer coral (Euphyllia parancora)   2/14/06
Hi! I have a beautiful and (so far) healthy branching hammer coral with metallic green tips. There are even new branches slowly coming out. I recently noticed that there were small holes in the skeleton (I mean the hard non-fleshy part...). Holes have a diameter of about 1mm. I verified with a needle (with caution) to be sure they were not just dark spots giving the false impression there were holes but they really are holes. In two places the holes are much larger (many small holes done next to another?) making those spots look like a piece of cheese...
<Good description>
The night before I noticed hundreds of small oval shaped 1mm creatures crawling everywhere in the tank (glass, LR, and LPS corals). They are not flat, really like tiny little whitish walking eggs. They don't look like the typical copepod. I also have
some copepods and really I don't think these are. They walk in a somehow clumsy way and not in a gastropod's fashion. Sometimes they just release hold and let themselves go away with the current. Even tough very small I think I can see eyes gleaming when I use the flashlight (as with mysids) so they could be crustaceans. I took one and tried to see better with a magnifying glass but I couldn't see more details. Unfortunately I don't have access to a microscope right now. I didn't see any of them actually entering/exiting a hole so I can't even conclude they are related to the problem.
<Not likely>
Is it even possible that these holes were there since I got the coral but that I never noticed. I don't think so, but since I didn't take any pictures... Of course now comes the paranoia and I am under the impression that the coral's fleshy base was whiter than it is now. Looks a bit brownish to me under the flashlight (it's subtle...).
<This is no worry>
I am worried for my corals, I have other beautiful Euphylliids in the tank and I don't want to loose them.
<Or lose them>
I know it's probably not an easy question.
Thanks for any advice!
<The empty areas are very likely due to your water quality... Something out of balance... biomineral (calcium, or magnesium percentage) and alkalinity... check these and fix. Along with feeding, sufficient light, good care, these should go in time. The "bugs?"... I'd ignore them for now. Bob Fenner>


Hammer Coral With Feather Worms? - 11/25/05
Hi Bob, Anthony, crew,
<<Crewmember EricR here tonight.>>
These holes in my hammer coral contain a feather worm of some type?
<<Are you asking me?  I've seen this before in various corals (usually Porites), though never before in a Hammer Coral.>>
There is also one hidden in the branch head below in the middle.
Sent an earlier email in regard to why my hammer withdraws as the day goes on.  Could these be the culprits?
<<Possibly...most corals show a tolerance for these worms...but there's always the exception.>>
If so should I eliminate them and how?
<<Up to you...  If you think they are causing the hammer to decline and you wish to keep it over the worms, then yes, you'll probably have to remove/kill them.>>
Have a Happy Thanksgiving.
<<Regards, EricR>>

Frogspawn Infestation 11/6/05 Hello all, <Howdy Matt> WWM is an excellent site with tons of info. I could not find anything with my problem, however. I have a 45 gallon breeder aquarium with 285 watts of VHO light that is dedicated to mostly LPS/softies. It has been set up for about 10 months, and most of the livestock is doing very well.  Beginning about 4 weeks ago, the frogspawn was not showing as much polyp extension. There has been progressively less and less extension since that time, so I looked very closely at it. There are many tiny white creatures crawling all over it. From a macroscopic perspective thy look like copepods: Same tiny size, white color, and movement. I'm attaching a picture that shows the relative small size of the critters, if not much definition. <Nice pic> I also have other Euphyllia in the tank including a torch coral, hammer coral, and pearl bubble coral. All these corals are doing well and do not show any signs of infestation. Tank parameters are kept stable with a top off unit and B-Ionic. I run an aqua C urchin skimmer and do regular water changes. I have not dipped new corals when I add them to the tank however, and feel that this is the most likely source of the white critters. Other measurements: Salinity 1.025 Nitrates 0 Ph 8.2-8.3 Ca 420 DKh 9.8 I know I should start dipping new corals, but what can I do for the current Frogspawn infestation? And what are these things?  Thanks, Matt <From the pic, your description of their behavior, likely some sort of crustacean... I would go the fish predator route here if you can allow, have space... Perhaps an Amblygobius species of Goby... a small, compatible wrasse... Bob Fenner> 

Melting Xeniids & Flatworms Galore Hi there WWM Crew. <Hey, Mike G with you tonight> Have been enjoying your site and links but have run into a couple of problems. To begin, let me give you the stats on the tank: <I personally thank you for giving me the stats on your tank. Out of many, many emails I have answered today, you are the first to provide such information. :-) > SG 1.025 <Fine> pH 8.0 in the morning (before lights come on) and 8.2 5 hours after lights on.. <You might want to find a way to remedy this. That is a large pH swing, and would cause undue stress to your pets.> NO2 (0) <Perfect> NO3 (20)  <Okay, but it could be a bit lower> NH3 (0)  <Perfect> Tank is set up with l MH l4000K and 2 65W 03 actinic along with a Bak Pak 2R protein skimmer that's skimming l/2 C of green stuff a day. Tank temp. fluctuates between 77.5 to 80F degrees lately. Water change weekly 15 gals. Sometimes time doesn't permit, and water gets changed every 2 weeks. <Sounds fine. I am left wondering how large your tank is, though.> Problem l: For some reason, my pulsing xenias are dying (melting) and I can't figure out why. Have had these Xenias now for almost 2 years pulsing and dividing away and now...  What's going on here? <This is a common problem with Xeniid corals, they seem to "melt" when in unfavorable conditions or after drastic changes in water parameters. Take a gander at the following link, namely the topic "Xenia Health" about 3/4 down the page. http://www.wetwebmedia.com/xeniidfaqs3.htm  > Problem 2: My frog spawn frag (originally only 2 heads - now 6 heads) has been invaded with oval shaped pumpkin colored flatworms - have no idea where they came from as I do quarantine any and all going into the main tank. I've  read that they come and go But, now they've migrated to my pagoda coral and I really don't want it to take over the whole tank (60 gal)!  <Ah, there we go, 60 gallons. Flatworms have a habit of overrunning marine aquaria.> On my next water change or sooner, can I do a fresh water dip or Lugol's iodine dip on these two corals without harming them and hopefully getting rid of the flatworms?  <That is exactly what I would have recommended you do.> Thank you for your help/advice. <Best of luck, Mike G>

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