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FAQs about Caryophyllid Coral Social Disease

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, Trauma, Pathogenic (Infectious, Parasitic, Viral) Predatory/Pest, 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,

The all-too usual issues of chemical allelopathy, stinging, digestive dominance, overshadowing... Mainly from Zoanthids, Polyps, Xeniids and other soft corals; but also other stony corals; including other Euphylliids/Caryophylliids

And over-zealous misplaced Clownfishes

Brown Jelly Euphyllia paradivisa... actually chem. starvation, allelopathy... iatrogenic errors      3/16/16
Good Evening,
<And you>
I am looking for your wisdom on saving a large neon Euphyllia paradivisa from the dreaded brown jelly disease.
This event is spreading quickly so please advise and I will jump into action.
<Likely expedient>
150 gallon, 6 year established mixed reef, skimmer, LifeReef CO2 reactor & sump & refugium, LEDs, MP 40s, constant pH 8.06 (due to CO2 reactor?),
<Maybe... What is your RedOx? >
CO2 reactor pH 6.5, no phosphates, no nitrates,
<... all photosynthetic; make that all life requires some measurable HPO4, NO3... See, as in READ on WWM re>

415 calcium, alkalinity 12 dKH,
magnesium 1300, 1.026 salinity, 80.8 degrees F, 20% water changes weekly, softies, few SPS, many LPS, 10 fish, hermits, starfish, snails...
I noticed a small Aiptasia on the disc of a large toadstool leather a month ago.
<So; in addition to chemical/food starvation, allelopathy may be an issue>
Yes, I should have addressed it but didn't.
This Sunday, I used a small dab of Aiptasia X on the anemone and noticed a ring of dead/loose tissue the size of a quarter around the pest.
So I turkey basted up the dead tissue and the melted anemone. When I did this it revealed a deep tunnel of dead tissue coming from inside the trunk of the
toadstool. Anyhow, I turkey basted up more dead tissue and then...
proceeded to gently turkey baste the new tunnel through the toadstool...when
I did this dead tissue spewed into the water column. I turned on the media reactor
<... what is in this reactor?>
to run carbon and did the 25% water change. Everything looked great in tank.
Monday, toadstool was still in good recovery.
Tuesday, toadstool looking still positively recovering-the tissue looks good! Polyps are thinking about opening under the normal shiny slime coat it gets when it goes through growth spurt. HOWEVER, on the other side of the 150 gallon tank, I noticed a tiny spot of brown goo on a hard to see area of a giant Euphyllia, around noon. Hoping it was waste product, I made a mental note.
At 5:00 p.m., the pea sized brown goo was quarter sized. I rotated the coral to take a photo and have a clearer view. Yes, it has to be tissue from the toadstool on the opposite end of the tank landed in the far end of the frogspawn! What do I do?
<Water changes, chemical filtrant (Polyfilter, GAC) use, and overdosing of iodide-ate
This is my prized (6 years with me) neon wall frogspawn. I can't loose it.
<Or lose it>
Panic is setting in! I have searched the internet and wet web....
Do I try the iodine dipping routine?
<Not dipping, addition>

(I tried this years ago to no avail.)
Do I take it to the LFS with a coral saw to separate infected from good?
(I think this is the only option to save part of this LPS. ?)
<A possibility... but not what I'd do... see the above, use the search tool (on every page on WWM) and READ>
By tomorrow morning, this could be really bad.
Thanks for any suggestions.
I have learned a painful lesson: turn off power heads when working around suspicious coral tissue and address pest anemones ASAP.
<And you; Bob Fenner>

Euphyllia Brown Jelly     3/16/16
another pic of brown jelly
<This looks more like BGA... do you have a microscope? Same response otherwise. BobF>

Toadstool Leather dead tissue     3/16/16
Here is a picture of the toadstool with the dead tissue and melted Aiptasia before I turkey basted up the majority of dead tissue.
The tissue was powdery & fibrous grey. The tissue on the toadstool was not slimy brown.
But it has to be what started the brown jelly on the frogspawn. ?
<A contributing factor very likely>
Thanks again.
<Allelopathy by Alcyonaceans.... reading. B>

Shrinking Hammer Coral/Euphyllia Compatibility 7/16/10
Dear Crew,
Thanks so much for your dedication!
<You're welcome.>
Thanks to you, my reef tank is thriving, minus one specimen: a hammer coral. First of all, here is the tank information.
I've tried to include as much relevant data as possible for an accurate diagnosis.
54 Gallon Corner Reef

Rena Xp3 Canister 350 gph (sump coming soon)
Bak-Pak Skimmer
150 Watt 14K HQI
65 Watt PC 10K/6700K
2 Maxi-jet's w/Hydor Flo
RO water, pre-buffered
Tropic Marine Salt
B-ionic daily
2 gallons changed twice weekly

SG 1.025
Temp 80-82.5 degrees F (running warm during the summer months)
pH 8.4 (p.m. reading)
Ammonia 0
Nitrite 0
Nitrate 0 (although undoubtedly present in tank)

DKH 11
Calcium 340 (running unusually low)
Magnesium- Still need to buy the darn test kit!
1 Torch
1 Hammer
1 Frogspawn
2 Bubble Corals
1 Candy Cane
1 Galaxy (isolated)
Green Star Polyps
Button Polyp/Yellow Colony Polyp (very small colony)

Fish and Inverts:
Midas Blenny
Royal Gramma
6-Line Wrasse
Lawnmower Blenny (small)
Small feather duster
Skunk Cleaner Shrimp
Misc. snails and tiny hermits
The tank was set up as a FO for 3 years and as a reef since January. The hammer was one of the first specimens and over the past 3 months it has exhibited obvious signs of polyp shrinkage. The attached photo was taken 1 month ago and the coral has decreased in size by about 20% (coral appears on the left side in photo).
I have never witnessed any tank inhabitants sampling any corals and do not think that allelopathy is the cause (you may disagree!). I also do not think that the low calcium level would be the cause. My best guess would be an issue with too little or too much light or water flow. The specimen is placed about 18 inches under the HQI bulb and is fed a mixture of Mysis, NLS pellet, and various blended marine meat (although it does not appear to eat much compared to my voracious bubble corals). In addition, I've noticed that it, along with my Frogspawn almost completely withdraw their polyps at night and do NOT accept food unlike the other corals. I attempt to feed these two during the day.
My apologies for the long email. I do know that you prefer to have too much info. as opposed to too little. Again, thank you SO much for your generosity.
You truly have helped thousands of hobbyists and we appreciate everything that you do!
<Your Torch, Hammer, and Frogspawn Corals are all Euphyllia species and are aggressive in terms of allelopathy. The Hammer Coral, in my experience, is the most difficult of the three to maintain with all three being moderately difficult. I believe the Hammer Coral is likely losing the allelopathy war. I would move the Hammer Coral 6 to 8 inches away from the other Euphyllia species you have in your system. A note on magnesium....magnesium is a
major element of sea water and should be maintained at 1200-1300ppm. Low magnesium levels hinders stony corals from absorbing calcium to varying degrees depending on the actual magnesium level in your system.
An example is if your calcium measures 400ppm and your magnesium measures 650ppm, only 200ppm of calcium is actually available to the corals. You may also want to read here and related articles/FAQ's found in the header.
Thank YOU!
<You're welcome. James (Salty Dog)>
Joe W.

Torch Coral 5/31/2010
Hi gang, just back from Longboat Key Fla.
<Ahh! A few of us were t/here last year diving>
Had a great time and will post some pics later. Since I got back it appears something has happened to my Torch Coral. It grew from 5 heads to over 15 and was doing great. When I got back, 3 heads are dead and 3 or 4 are not expanding. The rest of the heads seem o.k. The only thing I did different was to turn off the skimmer for the week I was gone. Fish were fed every other day. There is a large Yellow Fin Damsel in there and once in awhile he nips at it but nothing terrible. I don't know if he would eat them?
<Might a little... if hungry... but sufficient to kill so much in such a short period of time?>
or, if the water being "dirtier" had a negative effect. All water parameters are good. The Frog Spawn is real good and all the leathers are doing fine. Any ideas??
<Likely the Leathers duking it out with the Euphyllia... Use the search tool on WWM w/ the term "compatibility" and read the cached views...
Allelopathy is my best guess:
Bob Fenner>

Weird frogspawn coral question... likely burned by a Galaxea neighbour   3/6/08 Good Evening, <Am here now for me> I have scoured this site and the internet for two weeks now with no answer to this puzzling question, although you guys have answered my 10,000 other questions without me even having to ask. Its all here for the taking. <Ah, yes> All comments on my methods/system are welcome. Anyway, back to the problem at hand. I have a frogspawn coral which I purchased three weeks ago and it is losing tentacles. About one tentacle is lost from each of its five polyps each day. <Mmmm, bad> The tentacles constrict at the base and eventually pinch off completely and float away. Otherwise, the polyps look fairly good. They extend each day, close at night, and eat mysis shrimp every other day. Also, the polyps are not receding where they attach to the skeleton. I suspect that this may be a response to the different lighting I have them under, as the colors are becoming richer as the days pass. <... could be> The store used 14000K 175 watt or 150, I forgot) metal halides, with about 7 watts per gallon. I have two 100 watt 6700K screw-in compact fluorescents, which give me 12 watts per gallon. I have used these bulbs on the tank since it was created 14 months ago; I have replaced them once already. I suppose some other background info will help also. The tank is 16 gallons, tiny, but I have failed twice with larger ones. I have about 40 pounds of live rock <! not much room left for water> in there with 3.5 inches of crushed coral substrate. I am using a sulphur based denitrification media in the lower layers of the substrate. <Mmm, this could be...> My protein skimmer is a SeaClone 100, which I have had for years and I like it due to its simplicity. I use no other filters. Parameters are as follows: SG 1.023 Temp 80F pH 8.3 Ammonia 0 Nitrites 0 Nitrates 0 never a problem because of the reduction of NO3 <Need to have some...> KH 10 Ca 450 ppm <A bit high...> I do about a 25 percent water change every week with a peristaltic pump to add water at the same time I remove it. I realize this is not as good as removing water then adding, but coral placement does not allow for it. I actually add a 5 gallon bucket of new water made from Oceanic salt mix, but some is removed due to the simultaneous siphoning out of tank water (the 25% I roughly calculated). I do not supplement any trace elements, as I perform such frequent water changes. <Good technique for small volumes> I also do nothing special to keep the parameters as they are. I do top off with RO water which has been remineralized with 10 micron powered aragonite and a dose of "purple-up" from CaribSea. <I would discontinue this immediately> Water flow is medium too low for the frogspawn and is multidirectional. It is placed lower in the tank, about 10 inches from the lights. Other livestock: 1 galaxy coral, rapidly growing, opposite side from the frogspawn <D'oh! Oculinids are very "stingy"... THIS is most likely the cause of trouble here> 1 Kenya tree, also growing, <Secondarily allelopathogenic...> 1 orange Fungia, 2 inches across, doing great on the sand bed. various mushrooms, Zoanthids, a little anthelia 1 green banded goby 1 Firefish 1 yellowtail damsel 1 brittle star snails and crabs All of these are long term inhabitants having been in the tank longer than 9 months (except the frogspawn). None of the corals have direct contact with each other via sweeper tentacles. Any suggestions, comments, and criticism is welcomed, as I want to solve the disappearing tentacle problem. Best Regards, Ken <Oh, I see by your titling below you have some life-science backgd.. There are a few possibilities, sources of potential loss of vitality that you hint at... But definitely read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/cnidcompppt.htm and the linked files above. Bob Fenner>

Dying bubble coral... Poor system and species mix  9/26/07 Good Morning Crew. I wanted to thank you for all the valuable info you provide, without it I would be lost! Here is my question though. We have a 40 gal. tank with 1 3" maroon clown who hosts in our Condy, <A poor match... will likely kill this Caribbean animal with growth, time...> a lawnmower blenny, a Mandarin goby, a Magenta Gramma, a Pajama cardinal,, 4 astrea snails, 4 hermit crabs, Various polyps, and a Bubble coral. <Quite a blend... these last two are not compatible in such small volumes> There is about 35 lbs. of live rock, and 2" to 3" in. of live sand. We have had the Bubble coral for about 5 months, and up until a month ago it was doing great, looked extremely full, and all calcified parts were completely covered. It is now slowly retracting from it's rock and is down to about half the original size. <Not surprising...> where it looked like it had three separate mouths, it now only has two, and one is totally shriveled up. It also has some reddish brown spots on some of it's bubbles, but it still has a healthy appetite. Please help, I don't know what is wrong! <Cnidarian allelopathy> Temp between 79and 81 Specific gravity 1.024 PH 7.8 Alkalinity ideal Nitrites 0 Nitrates a little high ( 40 ppm on quick dip test strip?) <Need to be at most half this> but the nitrates have been at this level the entire time the tank has been here ( 1 year, running 4 years total) Thanks for your time, any input would be helpful! <Read on... start here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/cnidcomp5.htm  and the files above... the search tool, indices... You need to re-think your stocking "plan"... Read about the needs/systems and compatibility of what you have, intend to keep... What you have now is untenable. Bob Fenner>

PLEASE HELP ASAP!!!  Ammonia spike!!! Cnid., Anemone incomp.   9/30/06 Hey crew.  I need your advice.  I have (maybe had) a 29 gallon reef with a 15 gallon refugium.  I was gone for 2 days and came back to see I had a bubble coral looking like it had died twice!  I removed it, and took a water sample.  Ammonia was .25 ppm.  Well, I just so happened to be out of salt and needed to wait till the morning to go get some.   All of a sudden... white slime (looks kinda like mucus) come off of everything.  Every piece of live rock, every mushroom... everything.  I tried syphoning as much as I could.    <Yikes>   I ran and got an old Fluval and threw some carbon in it and ran it for the night. <Good try> I woke up the next morning to about 10 dead mushrooms, a dead hammer coral, and a rose bubble tip <... incompatible> that was not looking good at all.  I removed all of them.. <Best... but not back together... the root cause...> and noticed lots of goo coming off over every part of the anemone.  So, ... as I tried not to freak out, but rather act quickly.....  I went as fast as I could and got some salt.  I did a 10 gallon water change right then, and had to run into work.  I cam back from work and did a water test and the ammonia was 1.0 ppm.  I was at a loss of what to do.  I contacted my LFS and asked what they recommended.  I  was instructed to do a very very large water change.   <About the best stop-gap measure>   I changed 21 gallons of the 29 or so (less cause of live rock)  and left the water that was in the refugium.  I added a bag of live sand and mixed it with the sand currently in there hoping not to destroy all the helpful bacteria.  I then added 21 gallons of freshly made water and added a packet of bio-Spira marine.  Before the water change... everything looked like they were saying good bye to life... now they look like they want to fight to live.  I have a strange feeling this large of a water change will cause the tank to cycle again.  I was hoping to defeat this fear with bio-Spira.. but only time and your advice will tell.   I did a full water test.  Here are the results:   Ammonia - .25 (maybe .5, holding the test tube looks like both of them.  More so the .25 but I guess I should error on the side of caution)   Nitrite .05   Nitrate 5.0   Alk 2.9   Ph 8.4   Ca - 300   Salinity 1.026   Please give me some advice on what to do.  Anything and everything I can do.  I was planning on doing another 8 gallons tomorrow to try and lower that ammonia.  Are the benefits of doing the change worth the risk of further causing the tank to cycle?  I am soo lost and need your help.      Josh Henley <Mmm, something "caused" the initial stress/reaction of the one Euphylliid... very likely something to do with the presence of the Anemone... cascade of bad-events after this... Please read here:     http://www.wetwebmedia.com/cnidcompfaqs.htm and the linked files above, particularly re Anemone Incompatibility with other Cnidarians. Bob Fenner>

Air pockets in coral Hi Bob, I have a cup coral and a frogspawn and they formed air bubbles/pockets inside the coral. The cup coral one day formed a hole and some of the air escaped but another area still has an air pocket. this hole seems to be spreading. the frogspawn is still ok but still has the air pocket. what should I do and what causes this?  <Could be an infection... but more likely a dysfunction of these animals Zooxanthellae... the endosymbiotic algae... they're being overstimulated, otherwise being overactive, producing too much gas> how can I prevent this and will this cause the demise of my coral? <Depends on the cause/s... I would be checking my water chemistry, supplement practices...> I also have a anchor coral that one day seemed to not extend and now 90% of the tissue deteriorated. I'm not sure why since everything else seems to be doing well (xenia, bubble coral, Fiji leather), capricornis, scroll. I'm running 110w pc for 10hrs at night in my 30gal. please advise, thanks in advance for your time Jackson <Yikes... a thirty gallon with all these disparate life forms in it? An "answer" to the cause of your troubles is the mis-mixing of these incompatible types of cnidarians... you might be able to get by with chemical filtration, very frequent water changing... but there is likely a great deal of chemical and physical interaction going on betwixt all... and some are winning... others are on the other side. You need a larger tank, and/or to separate some of the stony from soft corals. Bob Fenner>

Unhappy hammer- coral aggression My hammer coral was looking good until I placed a purple torch next to it. They were about 2.5 inches apart, I increased the separation to ~4 inches. <very good move but not enough. The "rule" is 6-10" minimum between all coral... more between aggressive species. These two coral mentioned are VERY aggressive (modified tentacles at night and chemical exudations shed> The hammer's polyps are semi-retracted, sometimes completely retracted. Both corals are stetting on rocks on the bottom of a 29 gal tank. I've had the hammer for about two months, everything was fine, its been about four days since I got the torch. What should I do? <more space and good water flow. Aggressive skimming and weekly changes of carbon will help temper the aggression too. Best regards, Anthony>

Bubble problems.. <cheers, Brett> Hello Wet Web Staff, >  I have a problem with a Plerogyra sinuosa. It was doing great for a period of a year or so. It has been a gracious host to a clown fish for all of that time. <ouch... Scleractinia hosting clowns usually means trouble for the coral. Repetitive and unnatural abrasion of soft tissue against its own skeleton from the guest (clown). Wounds and tissue recession are inevitable in time> From readings on your site I found that I haven't been feeding it enough, but it was being fed periodically cut pieces of whole shrimp. <yes... please do feed minced (smaller pieces) several times weekly for the coral doesn't consume itself (attrition) in time> It also always gets floating brine shrimp that go uneaten by its finned tankmates. <Hmmm... adult brine? Very hollow food (almost no nutrition here... animals starve to death on this.). Try Mysis shrimp instead. Many other possibilities too... Gammarus, Pacifica plankton... anything but brine shrimp!> My problem is within the past week the bubbles are separating from the base. <not good indeed> The coral still balloons and otherwise looks normal. It's just that half of it is free from the stony base. What's your prognosis?   <it can survive... will take a few months... the clown must be removed and food particles have to be 1/4 or smaller (tiny) to prevent internal damage> I'm hoping maybe this is normal, however, I'm doubtful since I see no other queries stating this type of problem. <correct, my friend... it is not a good sign at all.> Tank chemistry parameters show no anomalies in any readings and are all within ranges that are considered healthy. The tank has been running for years with no real changes in chemistry. Lighting is 4 96 watt pc. bulbs two actinic two bright, running 12 hours a day.  The specimen is located about 12" below the surface, midway up a live rock wall and has never been moved. <all good as per above... must have been starvation or abrasion from the clownfish> Thanks for your time. Brett <best regards, Anthony>
Re: Can my bubble be saved???
Hello WWM Staff, I have been in touch with you recently, Anthony I believe, about my green Bubble Coral (Plerogyra sinuosa).   <cheers> If you recall, I have a clown that took up residence in it. <Ughh! Yes> As a result, over time, he separated the flesh from the stony base. You suggested separation or removal of the clown. I have isolated the coral specimen and at this time it's completely [detached from its skeleton]. <Ouch... that's going to leave a mark> The skeleton has been relegated to the sump for filter media. Anyway, will the "flesh" only specimen survive? <Yikes... what has happened is unnatural and uncommon. A stress induced strategy to be sure. I can't say if it will survive. I would suggest keeping it in a shallow dish of sand and feeding it regularly with hope for attachment (doubtful)> It still inflates albeit not as full and lush as before and if a fold develops it looks downright awful at the site of the fold. It has been without a base for about two weeks now. I have it in a perforated plastic Beta tank within my display tank. <very fine as long as it can get water flow> I have a small amount of sand from the tank in its isolation tank and it's resting on that. <excellent!> If it will, or has a chance to survive what do you recommend? <yes... possibly> Can I or should I attach it to a rock or piece of dead coral? <give it several months. If not attached by then, consider stitching it.> If so with what? If a section of it goes into decline any further can I "prune" it off and be left with anything that will live? <yes... but it would be a bad sign at that point> If I'm covering new ground here with this problem and solution any advice to increase my chances of success with be greatly appreciated. Thanks for your help. <best regards, Anthony>

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