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FAQs about Caryophyllid Coral Disease, Pests, Predation 12

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) Predatory/Pest, Treatments   

FAQs on Stony Coral Disease by Category: Diagnosing, Environmental (Pollution/Poisoning, Lighting...), Nutritional, Social (Allelopathy), Trauma, Pathogenic (Infectious, Parasitic, Viral) Predatory/Pest, Treatments  Caryophylliids 1, Caryophylliids 2, Caryophylliids 3, Caryophylliids 4, Caryophyllid ID, Caryophyllid Compatibility, Caryophyllid Systems, Caryophyllid Selection, Caryophyllid Behavior, Caryophyllid Feeding, Caryophyllid Propagation/Reproduction, Stony/True Coral, Coral System Set-Up, Coral System Lighting, Stony Coral Identification, Stony Coral Selection, Coral Placement, Foods/Feeding/Nutrition, Disease/Health, Propagation, Growing Reef Corals, Stony Coral Behavior,

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>

Torch coral help?   10/27/16
Hello WWM crew,
I recently purchased a Torch Coral and just now noticed some skeleton exposed at night. So I flipped the lights on and did a visual inspection. I can't see any brown decay but I'm still worried about Brown Jelly Disease.
The head in question is the one on the far right.
My levels are:
<Ahh; all life needs "some" soluble/useful HPO4... and NO3.
See, as in read on WWM re. MANY people have been misled by chemical filtrant sellers on this issue. Your system may simply be too sterile chemically to support this life>
Temp-26 Celsius
Current stock:
Diamond Watchman
Barnacle Blenny
Snails (turbo tophats and Nassarius)
Hermits (dwarf zebra, electric blue)
Leather (toadstool)
Photosynthetic gorgonian
<Other usual "causes" include (other) environmental issues... too much/little of something necessary (physical, chemical, biological); predation/harassment (perhaps the hermits here), Allelopathy (maybe the Sarcophyton, Shrooms...>
It has just been only 2 days since I bought the Torch
but any help would be much appreciated.
<Oh, or just general stress... moving is VERY stressful. See WWM re the use of iodide-ate (I'd triple dose the system, then three days later, double dose), the possible use/administration of simple sugar. Write back after reading if your course of action, and rationale aren't clear. Bob Fenner>

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>

Black stalk on Hammerhead corals      8/15/16
I haven't written for a long time and tried to find my answer on your website but finally gave up. It's a strange question, I think!
I have three hammerhead corals in my 90 g. marine tank and something weird has recently happened. I've had the coral for about a year and all was well until now. The trunks/stalks/or whatever they are called have suddenly turn from white to black. They seem to be in good health otherwise.
<Have seen this happen before... metabolic? Some sort of overgrowth?
Doesn't seem to be debilitating... and does occur in the wild as well.>
The 90 g tank is about eight years old, has two clowns, one blue-green Chromis, four small pajama cardinals, one orange-spot goby, a Coral Beauty angel, and a Royal Gramma. Also, two cleaner shrimp and three peppermints (friendly, not nocturnal!), and three snails. The parameters are temp. 76 degrees, ph 8.4, no ammonia or nitrites, nitrates now at 2, phosphates 1.5,
<? ppm?>
calcium 495
<I'd let this drift to the low 400s>

dKH, alk now at 6-5 to 6.7. I have added 1 1/2 to 2 teaspoons Seachem Reef Builder twice a week after testing, but not at the same time as water changes. I mention this because I do a 5% water change twice a week per suggestion from one of your crew. I have a sump and a Eshopps protein skimmer (don't like, but can't afford a better one).
<This one's fine>
Since adding the Reef Builder the hammerheads have turned from white trunks and stems to black. Is this normal?
<As stated, not abnormal>
Should I stop the additive?
<What else would you use to sustain alkaline earths, alkalinity? I wouldn't stop>
I can send a photo if you think that is needed.
<Mmm; if you'd like>
Any help you can give me would be really appreciated!
<Really don't think there is a need for help here. I would continue as you are doing. Bob Fenner>
Re: Black stalk on Hammerhead corals      8/15/16

Hi Bob, Thanks for such a quick answer! I do appreciate your help so much.
The 495 of calcium I referred to is ppm. (I have several Salifert test kits now that I really enjoy--so easy and accurate.) The rise in calcium coincided with the addition of more aragonite sand. I thought my sand bed would be better if it were a little deeper, so added about 10 lbs. live aragonite sand and mixed it in well with the original sand. How do I lower the level of calcium now, or does it just go down on its own over time?
<The latter; just time going by. Not advised to offset this w/ alk. addn.>
I don't have any other product to sustain the alkalinity at a good level, so I was just wondering if Reef Builder was adequate.
<Should be; yes>
I'll keep testing and add as needed as you suggested. I have your book, "The Conscientious Marine Aquarist" and refer to it often. Up until a year ago, I had only FOWLR tanks, so there is still much to learn.
<Oh yes; for me most days bring facts, ideas I'd not considered>
Incidentally, I also want to thank you and your crew for the information on getting rid of that awful red slime algae (I know, blue-green algae) and added a third powerhead, rinsed the frozen foods, fed a little less food, continued frequent water changes, and monitored the protein skimmer daily.
All it well now--that a relief!
I don't have a photo of the black, or dark brown, stalks on the hammerheads, but it sounds like you've answered by question without one.
So thank you once again.
<Certainly welcome Edie. Cheers, Bob Fenner>
Re: Black stalk on Hammerhead corals      8/15/16

This seems to have come back to me---I hope I'm not duplicating my previous message. Edie
<Thank you for re-sending. B>

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>

Please help. Cnid. allelopathy in a new, large sys.       5/26/16
Hello Mr. Fenner,
<Hey Dai>
I hope you can point me in the right direction. I have a 265 gallon reef tank that I set up 4 months ago. I have sump/refugium, 4" carbon reactor, 6" media reactor with media pellets, 8" skimmer. Lights are 4 Hydra 26 HDs.
Nitrate /phosphate is zero

<Mmm; stop here: You know that all bio-mineralizing life requires "some" NO3 and HPO4? W/o these basic chemical nutrients all your "corals" will be very stressed/starved>
and the water is within reef parameters. The tank has 3 sections. Left is Zoas, center is 100 plus heads of hammers/frogspawn, and the right is 18" green leather and 4" green toadstool.

Everything was fine with Zoas multiplying, hammers sprouts tiny babies but within the past 5 days, some of the hammer heads just died leaving stalk white skeletons.
<The "losers"... to either the Alcyoniids or Zoanthids>

I bought a 60 gallon so this weekend I can put the finger/toadstool in it.
I hook up the FX6 filter (400 GPH) with carbon to address chemical warfare since Monday. I think the reasons on the demise of the hammers are :
1. Chemical release from leather/toadstool.
2. Media reactor strips all nitrate/phosphate which hammers do need to grow.
<Definitely a/some factor>
So my plan is:
1. Move the toadstool/green finger to the 60 gallon.
2. Discontinue the FX6.
3. Discontinue the carbon and media reactor (all in one pellets).
<Sounds good>
The Zoas are thriving with new heads forming every week. I love to have a garden of hammers and while some people grow these like weeds, I can't keep them alive. Before dying, they thrive then die next day. Is my diagnosis and plan of action correct? Thank you Mr. Fenner. Dai
<I do agree with your plan; is what I would do, try at this point. IF no improvement, I would move the Euphyllias elsewhere. DO PLEASE READ AND HEED my acclimation protocol for introducing any/all NEW Cnidarians... by mixing water to/fro twixt the main-display and isolation/quarantine system. HERE:
Bob Fenner>
<<Note: next time mention triple-dosing iodide-ate>>
Re: Please help

Thank you Mr. Fenner. So you are saying maybe it is the Zoas that are affecting the hammers as well ?
<Might/could well be; yes>
In that case should I move the hammers to the 60 and leave the toadstool/finger in the main tank?
<Yes; a better plan... Plus I'd triple dose all (both systems) with iodide-ate... every three days, three times>
Or just leave them in the main tank for now? I bought the 60 for the leathers specifically. Is it OK to run the 4" carbon reactor?
<Can't say from here. I would NOT use such on a newish system period>
On another topic. I think the" all in one pellets" give people the false sense of security.
<Oh yeah; the/a "western ethic"... trained to be good consumers... "Buying" something... but sans understanding, often false notion/s>
The dealer touts as " zero nitrate and zero phosphate" so people go crazy thinking they don't have to do water for a year. But while this is true, it is hurting corals because it is stripping of the essential nutrients that corals need.
<Yes... even other media/sources tout that the world's reefs are "nutrient free" when in good shape. NOT the case. They are nutrient concentrated; with the life there scavenging most all available. NEVER zero nutrients in the water>
If you have to rely on these 'miracles" to get nitrate/PO4 to be zero then that person needs to evaluate his technique of husbandry.
<Very well stated>
Thank you and I look forward to your guidance. Dai
<And I to your further sharing. BobF>
Re: Please help     5/27/16

Ok, so this is the plan. Move the hammers to the 60. How much of new water to old water ratio be?
<About half>
If the old water is not good (chemical warfare, no nutrients) then may be start with 100% fresh water?
<Not I>
You talk about triple dose 2 tanks but I am not familiar with the medication. You mean every three days, I dose the tank 3 times a day and for how long? Is this the iodine coral dip?
<See WWM re. B>
Thanks! Dai
Re: Please help... Euphyllias, hlth.       6/3/16

Hello Mr. Fenner
<Hey Dai>
The 60 gallon is getting ready as I had to order a new tank. In the mean time my hammers are dying so I need to get them out of my 265.
<I'd move NOW; with a good deal of their present water>
I have a 50 gallon tank and freshly prepared water (a week old) that I will put in that tank with 40% old water and 60% new water.
<Oh! Good>
I will move all the hammers into that 50 gallon until the 60 is ready (likely by this weekend). The 50 just have HOB filters, T5 so do you see any issues with this plan?
<I do not... I WOULD triple dose w/ iodide/ate after the move... possibly more as a dip, along w/ a simple (hexose) sugar enroute>
I have run an external filter FX6 (400 GPH) to get rid of the chemical warfare but the hammers are still dying. Thank you for your reply. Dai
<Cheers! BobF>

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>

Euphyllia Brown Jelly-cautiously optimistic     3/18/16
Hello Bob,
Thank you for your advice! I am cautiously optimistic.
When you mentioned RedOx, I was reminded to learn more about this measurement.
<A VERY useful indicator of a system's capacity to foster life>
Reading through the articles in WetWeb helped me understand its importance. It will be the next addition to the system.
I did a 25% water change, changed the carbon, changed the poly filter material, cranked up the skimmer, gently turkey baste away any brown jelly that forms every couple hours, raised the iodide-ate to .09 overnight, the next morning 20% water change, more turkey baste removal, iodine level now at .08 and the frogspawn is looking pretty good!
<In the photo; I agree>
(Tomorrow I will do a 10% water change and work on getting the iodine down to .07.) The brown jelly production is now minimal and the other 3/4's of the frogspawn is acting almost normal.
(The only coral objecting to the high iodine level is a sunset encrusting Montipora, other Montiporas are looking fine.)
I have been reading and will continue to read about increasing nitrates and phosphates. So the goal is NO3 a few ppm and HPO4 between .01-.05?
I looked back into the log, and Nitrates ranged between 0 - .2 (Salifert), and Phosphates ranged between 0 - .04 (Hanna & Red Sea) over the past 6 months. Most of the time the readings were 0, which is strange when the
refugium is full of macroalgae,
<Ah, not strange... the algae are/were scavenging most all>
fish are generously fed, I target feed corals, corals are growing, and occasionally tank has a minor hair algae event.
<I'd remove a good deal of the 'fuge macro-algae... only run the 'fuge lighting at night; in opposition to the main/displays>
A Neptune Apex was recently installed, so the next programming I will do is to turn off the skimmer during feeding...and night?
<I'd leave running at night; for DO>
and add the ORP probe.
Anyhow, thank you for the recommendations and hopefully this wall Euphyllia will pull through. I feel that it was in a thriving state of health before this event due to its tripling in size over the past 6 years, great polyp extension and good fleshy tissue around the calcified base.
Reading, reading, reading is the only way I have gotten this far in the hobby...the chemistry part isn't natural for this art major. Thank you for trusted advice.
<Your response, success... is exactly what I hope for in producing and making WWM available. Thank you for sharing.
Bob Fenner>

Diatoms, Phosguard and photo period; plus Euphyllia env. loss f'       2/23/16
Hello all and thank you for the kind service you do for us in the hobby.
<Hope to be helpful!>
I have had my 60 gallon reef tank since September 2011. For many years I ran a Marineland reef capable led light. I loved it. Eventually some leds began shorting out and I replaced it with a Kessil 350 led.
<Excellent product.>
After 8 months the Kessil stopped working.
<Uh oh! Any idea why or what specifically went wrong? I'd have looked into getting this fixed, it should be under warranty and in any case, failure like this is both uncommon and unacceptable with a light of that build and price.>
I went without a light for a month or two and lost my hammer coral.

<And probably a lot of other organisms great and small, certainly. What else was in there? And did it get window/external light? Did you feed the tank?>
I then bought another Marineland reef capable 48" led fixture and put it on my tank. Here is my issue now; I got a horrible diatom outbreak right away. I tried decreasing the photo period from 8 hours to 6 hours and then to 4 but nothing helped. My sand and my rocks were covered with horrible powdery brown growth. I tested my r/o water with a tds meter and discovered I needed new filters. I ordered these and began using purchased r/o water that tests ok in the meantime. I rinsed my rocks in old tank water and did a 15% water change and kept the light off for a week and started running Phosguard Saturday. My tank looks amazing again. Can I put my light back on? Will I get another outbreak? Was it my water? I'm so confused and unsure what made the positive difference, the lack of light or the Phosguard. I appreciate any insight.
Thank you for your time,
<Well this is certainly a combination of factors but can be boiled down to "nutrients" from die-off, possibly your source water as well, lack of water changes, disrupted biological filtration. All these will cause all sorts of nuisances to crop up. Your best weapon here is simply more frequent/larger water changes. Say 20% a week. This will get things back on track, especially alongside the Phosguard and good ro/di water. If it were me I would set the light up normally; diatoms/slime algae and their ilk love low-flow, "dirty" water and usually, low lighting. There's no mystery or trick here, just keep up your water quality with water changes, keep the tank as stable as possible, under stock it for a while and don't feed any more than you need to. Then go from there. As you have seen, coral is known to be "fragile" but it often surprisingly tough! Anything that survived
this disaster is likely to do great again if you stick to the above concepts. -Earl>
Re: Diatoms, Phosguard and photo period

I also want to add I run a reef octopus hang on the back skimmer that produces maybe half a cup of dark skim a day.
<Excellent! Invaluable tool and it seems like you have it tuned in well.>
Re: Diatoms, Phosguard and photo period
> Thank you for your quick and insightful reply. I emailed Kessil last week
> and they gave me some troubleshooting which has done nothing. I need to
> follow up as I think she needs my receipt. It was very pricey and I'm still
> in shock it broke. My tank is next to a bank of 3 north facing windows so
> my fish still had a photo period and the blue mushrooms have doubled in
> number.
<Ah north light windows, beloved by painters! Cooler light (towards the blue end of the spectrum), may have had an effect on your tank perhaps. Better than warm yellow light, certainly.>
> Not worth losing my hammer though. I continued to feed my 4 fish
> yes. At your advice I resumed using my MarineLand light
2 days ago at the
> preset timer, I think it's 8 hours on. I will do a 20% water change as you
> advised this weekend. My sandbed is clear, no diatoms. Thank you for your
> support and kindness. It's a lonely feeling to flounder and struggle in
> this hobby and nice to have knowledgeable people to turn to mitigate this
> feeling.
> Have a wonderful day,
> Sarah
<Thank you for the kind words, glad to be of use. No need to feel alone in the fish n' coral keeping hobby though! I cannot overstress how great it is to join a local aquarium club (they are just about everywhere). Also try social groups online. There is a Ladies' Frag Swap Facebook group my better half frequents that might interest you, as a suggestion. Remember, slow down, enjoy, don't let up trying to get that Kessil replaced/repaired, and maybe sell some of those blue 'Shrooms or trade them...get some new hammer frags :)>

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>

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