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FAQs about Health/Diseases, Pests of Soft Corals of the Family Alcyoniidae 8

FAQs on Alcyoniid Disease: Alcyoniid Health 1, Alcyoniid Disease 2, Alcyoniid Disease 3, Alcyoniid Disease 4, Alcyoniid Disease 5, Alcyoniid Disease 6, Alcyoniid Disease 7, Alcyoniid Disease 9, Alcyoniid Health 10, Alcyoniid Disease 11, Alcyoniid Health 12, Alcyoniid Disease 13, Alcyoniid Disease 14, Alcyoniid Disease 15, Alcyoniid Disease ,
FAQs on Alcyoniid Disease by Category: Diagnosis, Environment, Nutritional, Pathogenic (Infectious, parasitic), Predator/Pests, Social, Trauma, Treatments

Related Articles: Soft Corals of the Family Alcyoniidae

Related FAQs: Soft Corals of the Family Alcyoniidae, Alcyoniids 2, Alcyoniids 3, Alcyoniids 4, Alcyoniid ID, Alcyoniid Selection, Alcyoniid Compatibility, Alcyoniid Systems, Alcyoniid Behavior, Alcyoniid Feeding, Alcyoniid Propagation, Soft Coral PropagationSoft Coral HealthDyed CoralsSoft Coral Propagation, Nephtheids, Dendronephthya, Paralcyoniids, Nidaliids, Xeniids, Dyed Corals

Sinularia dura looking bad    5/3/07 Hi Crew, <Jason> I have a Sinularia dura that's been in my tank for over a year and a half (came with my first LR). It has been doing well all this time, but for the past 2 weeks (about) parts of it have been looking bad -- no polyp extension I can see, crusty-looking surface. All my water parameters are in line except a somewhat low alkalinity of 7.5. All of the other corals in the tank look normal. <When, where in doubt... Water changes, added circulation, cleaning up of your skimmer... if necessary/practical, moving the specimen/s> One thing to note is that I have a fair amount of green hair algae. <Ahh... perhaps a clue... as do dis-improving water quality... Tests?> I've been trying to remove it slowly through siphoning and water changes. Here are two pictures, hopefully these will help. In this first one, you can see the left-most "horn" looks good, with polyps and a translucent pink color. The others have no polyps and look duller. http://picasaweb.google.com/jasonm1/AquariumLife/photo#5060129994889755474 This one is taken from a different viewpoint, where you can see the top surface of the coral better. http://picasaweb.google.com/jasonm1/AquariumLife/photo#5060129831680998210 Thanks! Jason <Please read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/alcyondisfaqs.htm and the linked files above. Bob Fenner>

Shrunk mushroom, missing information on water parameters -- 04/29/07 I have looked and looked, but find no answer to my question. I just bought a leather mushroom, he looked fine in the store, I got him home, let him get use to the tank, and now his trunk has shrunk and the mushroom part of him is just lying on the bottom of the tank, the "stem" looks gray, black and brown. When I first introduced him into the tank he let out lots of white stuff. Now some of the white stuff is just stuck to the side of him. Is he dying? <Possible, but maybe he is only cleaning himself and needs a day or two to recover.> My water is great, ph, N3 <no such molecule in aquaria if at all. You mean ammonia, nitrates?> so on so forth. I also have 4 live rock inside my 45 gallon tank, and anemone (sp) tomato clown. I placed the mushroom on the bottom, because I read that they don't need to be close to the lights, which mine are high wattage for the live rock. <I'd put him onto a piece of rock. You can fix him with a toothpick if necessary.> Does my new mushroom need time to recover or do you think he's dead? <You state your water is great, but what is great for one species can kill another. Check nitrates (<20), phosphates (<0.6), pH (8.0-8.4) and SG (1.022-1.026). Nitrites and ammonia need to be absent. If all parameters are ok, he may recover soon. A water change probably won't hurt, too. Read http://www.wetwebmedia.com/corallim.htm and the FAQs for more information. Cheers, Marco.>
Re: Shrunk mushroom, missing information on water parameters II -- 04/30/07 The Leather Mushroom is attached to a rock that the man at the pet store broke down before I bought it. <I see. From your last mail (without picture) it seemed you were talking about a Corallimorph aka Mushroom, which have a small stem, too. Now I see you have a Sarcophyton sp. aka Mushroom aka Leather Coral. Another example, why the use of scientific names should be preferred.> So, its on a small piece of rock. <Okay.> To me he looks horrible, let me attach a picture of him for you and you tell me what you think. <Just what was suggested in the last mail: check those water parameters. If they are okay, and the brown on the stem continues to spread, cut away the 'head' (which seems quite fine) and fix it onto a new piece of rock with a toothpick, and remove the brown stem. Don't cut it until you are sure your water is fine. See http://www.wetwebmedia.com/alcyoniidsii.htm and the related FAQs on health and disease.> Thanks Rhonda. <Cheers, Marco.>

Crack in Soft Coral -- 4/13/07 Hey! Great site. <Thanks!> I was just wondering I bought a devils hand leather and just noticed as its starting to open there all cracks there the fingers attach to it.  I think it may have been dropped.  Inside the bag of course not just the coral hitting the ground.  I notice the guy drop it and I didn't say anything thinking he wouldn't sell it to me if it was serious.. I know him good <Well too!>. I didn't notice the damage till now. And I feel bad calling him.  Will this coral heal itself?   <Possibly, though probably better to just frag it.> It's not like anything is hanging off. It's just split slightly in about 4 spots.  Is it toast? <Nah, never toast.  More here on fragging:   http://www.wetwebmedia.com/corlpropfaqs.htm and related links in blue> should I say something? <You're decision.> thank you <Welcome!  -Mich> <Please I not I and the first letter of each sentence is capitalized!>

Leathers flaking away   4/13/07 I have recently purchased two new leathers, one green and purple finger leather and a colt leather. The colt is drooped over changing color from dark to light purple and also appears to be separating itself from the rock it was attached to, should I be concerned or take any action I have only had it for about a week? <This is a bad sign, I would attempt to remove this coral to a separate tank, using the same tank water then altering this slowly afterwards. Also, there are likely common scavengers -- crabs etc - that will soon start pulling this apart when they discover it> My main concern lies with the finger leather, the coral seems to be flaking apart but its color has not changed much, today I was scraping algae from the front glass and the bottom stalk actually fell right off the base of this coral seems to be completely flaking apart is this coral doomed and what could have caused this I have other corals that have been thriving. <It sounds like you have a lot of necrotic tissue present around the coral's base. Probably due to over-handling (contact with hands etc), also how did you acclimate this coral? As for both to be purchased at the same time and both have the same problem an acclimation procedure may be partially to blame. I would 'frag' this coral immediately to have hope of saving at least a percentage of it. 'Have a VERY sharp razor blade or scalpel ready. A needle with clean nylon thread (or fishing line) ready and waiting to stitch too. Also a piece of small rock or rubble as well. Move 3/4-1" above the highest necrotic area of the base of the stalk. Cut clean and fast through the animal. You must wear gloves and keep the procedure down to a minimum time of handling. After the cut, look at the exposed trunk and be sure that you cleared the soft and necrotic area... if so, run a stitch or two through the base (no more than an inch from the bottom) and tie it off to a piece of rock. Return it to the exact same place it was in the tank and do not touch it for weeks. Maintain strong water flow and very aggressive skimming in the tank. Small daily doses of iodine may be therapeutic for the tank too (not extra iodine... just your weekly dose broken down to daily).' -- Thanks to Anthony for that explanation. Also see here - http://www.wetwebmedia.com/softcorhealth.htm> Water tem 78-79 kH 8 Ca is high over 520 Nitrates are low <Figures needed> Nitrites 0 Salinity .029 I know is high <Would lower to nearer NSW - .026> 3 watts per gal t5 72 gal bow Two opposing Seio 820 powerheads <More reading needed, this a common problem with this common species with a common answer commonly available. Also please spell check and punctuate all sentences. Olly>

pH/Finger Leather, Coral Health 4/12/07 Hi there Crew, <Hello Michelle> First, let me thank you for the amazing website. I have spent many an hour cruising your site. (I did look for answers before asking) : ) I started a 55 gal saltwater tank 5 weeks ago. I have 55 lbs LR, and live sand 40 lbs. I use R/O water w/Kent Marine Salt mix. I have a light w/high output florescent, blue actinics and a moon light setting. <Knowing the wattage helps.> My lighting cycle is 12 hrs on, 12 off. I do 5% water changes twice a week.  My filter is a Freedom Flow, rated to 90 gals, and I have two Maxi jets, a 900 & 1200. My stats: <Parameters> Salinity: 1.024, PH: 8.0, Nitrates: 0, Nitrites: 0, GK: <GK?.. dKH?> 11 and Ammonia: 0. Tank inhabitants: 1 Turbo Snail, 1 Scarlet Shrimp, 3 Hermit Crabs, 4 Green Chromis, 2 Percula Clowns (tank raised), 2 Fire Fish Gobies, 1 Starry Dragonet and 1 Copper Banded Butterfly. Invertebrates: 1 Branching Hammer soft coral and 1 Finger Leather.  Oh, and a bunch of Caulerpa.  -Whew, I think that's it....   <Way too many fish for your 55.  The Copper Band was not a good choice if you are new at this.  More than likely will no be around long.> Sorry to be long winded, but I want you to have the info, hopefully I "said" it right. First question:  My pH, I can't seem to get it higher than 8.0. <Not surprising with your fish load.> Now,  I own Bob's book (awesome!!!) and I have been adding, for three weeks, 2 teaspoons of baking soda. Yet this doesn't seem to make a difference. I followed his directions and add it straight to the filter and only at the water changes. I read the FAQ on pH and I noticed that one guy said 1 teaspoon per gallon, but I thought Bob said 1 teasp per 10 gals???   What should I do? I don't want to harm any of my creatures. <Really need to test dKH with a quality test kit, and then add a little of the buffer daily (one tablespoon per 10 gallons will work), then test dKH the following day.  A good level to maintain is 8-12 dKH.> Is  8.0 ok? <Not bad, but you can help this matter by reducing your fish load.>   Second question: My Hammer is flourishing! Yay!  But my Finger Leather is not. The darn LFS said to put him in low flow, so I tried that, but he didn't seem to like it. Plus I read on FAQ that he should be in high flow, so I moved him. Finger guy is now right up on my the top of my rocks, about 6 - 7 inches from my light. He's in a high flow area. He shed a bunch of mucous-y stuff, but his polyps don't really come out. <They do go through this process.  If things are normal, it will re-bloom soon.> Today I woke up and one "branch" is squished down, while the other is just kind of dark. Some polyps out, but not many. The Finger is no where near the Hammer. I add Iodine & Phyto-Plankton once a week. What am I doing wrong? <The Copper Band is a notorious coral eater, surprised your LFS sold you this knowing you have corals.  He is most likely the bulk of the problem and should be removed and taken back to the dealer or find a good home for it.> BTW, the local LFS said I didn't need a heater. My tank temp runs about 80-82. <Where do you live?  What is your ambient night time temperature?> I am actually a bit frustrated with the local LFS 's around here (there's three) I get conflicting info from each of them, sometimes from employee's within the store!  LOL  Ack! <Working at a fish store does not necessarily mean he/she is a knowledgeable person in this field.> Oh also I had to say, no one told me about the possibility of getting Sea Stars with your LR! They said to watch for other stuff. But I found one, how cool is that!!!!!  I love my tank and want to do the right thing. Thank you so much for your help and advice!  You guys rock!! <Definitely more reading/learning for you Michelle.> Sincerely, <James (Salty Dog)> Michelle
Re:  pH/Finger Leather/Coral Health 4/13/07
James (Salty Dog), Thank you so much for your reply. <You're welcome.> Yes, I agree more reading is in order for me, however, what do you recommend, as I have read Mr. Fenner's Conscientious Aquarist, and I read each as much as I can on Wet Web. <Plenty to read on this site.  Have you read our articles in our emag, Conscientious Aquarist?  Do browse/read through all the archives here. http://www.wetwebmedia.com/ca/volume_4/V4I2/Cover/cover.htm  Another good book is Michael Paletta's "Modern Reef Aquarium".  This book is geared for novice aquarists such as yourself, and has sold over 110,000 copies.> I also agree with you on my local LFS, as yes, they sold my family the Finger Leather and Butterfly. (The fish was a present from my daughter who went with out me)  I called the LFS to find out what they fed her, they said Mysis Shrimp. But, no, she died this AM <Didn't think this fish would last long.  A difficult one to keep for newbies and experienced alike.  I would hate to think of how many of these beautiful fish have died in home aquariums because proper care/requirements were not met.> I am very saddened, and won't allow my daughter to buy me fish without my being there again. I only had her two days. <There are too many other beautiful fish that are much much easier to care for than the CBB.>   I meant dKH measurement, sorry about that. <OK> I will try to lower my fish load. I thought I had read that it was 1" of fish per gallon of water, was ok. <I like one <<cubic. RMF>> inch per five gallons myself.  The statement you read would mean I could keep a five inch trigger fish in a five gallon tank.  Mmmmm, don't think so.> I live in Denver. In the evening/morning with the actinics, my temp is 80. With my regular lights on, it is 82. ( I will get my wattage figured out too)  I will be running my air conditioner this summer in the house to keep it stabilized. <With no heater, what do you think the tank temperature will be, say at 3:00 am in the winter?  I'm sure you do not keep your home temperature at 78 degrees.> Oh, and my Finger Leather is looking a bit better, I shall keep an eye on it. I am sure you must get frustrated with those of us who are newbies, but I appreciate your help, and it is my goal to become as knowledgeable about my aquarium as possible. <Not frustrated at all, is why we do this, to help others from making mistakes we have made in our early years of fishkeeping and to educate on proper care of such.> I love my fish and will do everything to take the best care possible of them. <Keep in mind, these animals did not volunteer to leave their home, and, as aquarists, we should strive to give them the best possible conditions to continue their life in our tanks.> Thank you again for your time, <You're welcome.  James (Salty Dog)>      Michelle

Spaghetti Leather's New Look  4/8/07 Good Afternoon Crew, <Steve> Can you identify the white squiggly lines that have recently appeared on my finger leather? <Mmm, maybe> They are on the surface of the flesh at its base, and move slightly in the currents. Leather seems slightly withdrawn lately, but may be my 'super-aqua-paranoia'. Water parameters are normal. Thanks in advance for your help! Steve <Well... this could be "snail eggs" of some sort (I would try rubbing them off if you're curious), or some sort of worm... possibly "too" predaceous... only time, observation... You might be driven (if health takes a turn) to consider excising (yes, cutting away) this area... "fragmenting" this animal/colony... Please see WWM re Alcyoniid Disease: http://wetwebmedia.com/alcydis7.htm and the linked files above. Bob Fenner>

Re: Toadstool necrosis and healthful trimming 3/21/07   4/2/07 Hey GrahamT, <Hey, Dan.>          Thank you very much for the helpful information with my Toadstool. <You're quite welcome. Sorry for the delay in answering you. I've just moved and my PC is still not assembled yet.> I have a couple more questions about fragging it. <OK.> Since of its large size would it be easier and less stressful to use some scissors than a razor blade? <Not in my mind. The shearing as opposed to a good quick cut from a razor would be less clean and probably more stressful.> What would you use? <Razor, or scalpel if available.> Would it also be better to frag it at night when it is closed up? <Any fragging should be done after stimulating the creature to close in any manner possible/available.> Here are some current pictures of it from this last Saturday. <I see them. Sure does look nice excepting the necrotic tissue. -GrahamT>       http://i101.photobucket.com/albums/m46/blackhemi35003/Tank002.jpg    http://i101.photobucket.com/albums/m46/blackhemi35003/Tank003.jpg    http://i101.photobucket.com/albums/m46/blackhemi35003/Tank007.jpg    http://i101.photobucket.com/albums/m46/blackhemi35003/Tank004.jpg

Pics and ? Nudibranch and polyp/anemones  3/28/07 Hi there to all the crew. My name is Tracey. I have a 125 gallon reef tank and have for about 13 years now. I have two things I would like to address here. First, I have a couple of colt coral that started suddenly not doing well. Like they were being stung, <Consumed, predated...> but nothing was near enough even with current that would make that probable. I needed to top off my water and added my upped the alkalinity just enough to irritate the critter that was causing the problem to come into view. I am attaching a pic of this beautiful guy which I think is maybe a Nudibranch? <Yes... at least a Opisthobranch/Seaslug...> I'm surprised to see this now as I have not added anything new in months. I took him out and place him in quarantine until I learn more. I have seen and removed these before quite some time ago, and they had more of a pink color but were smaller. This guy is about 1 1/2" long and 3/4" wide. I removed him with tweezers and he had a sticky and slimy substance left behind what ever he came into contact with. I have found them near the base of the colt only. I'm not seeing flesh decay of the colt, it looks more like it being stung though I'm not certain. The base of the colt looks like it is separating some from the rock. He looks better already after only an hour of removing him. <Is/was being chewed... keep your eyes peeled for others> Ok, my next issue is this. I have several different polyps in my tank and have had a new species of some sort pop up and they multiply quickly. They split in half and they just move around and make more, even through the current. They grow on the glass, in the sand, on the rocks like crazy, and I have seen them grow attached to other coral. I'm wondering if this is some type of anemone rather than polyps. <Mmm, some pix look like Zoanthids... others summat like Anemonia species> I did have an Aiptasia problem and got that problem under control, so I'm pretty sure that's not what these are. I took out a few rocks that are just covered in about a months time and quarantined them also. I'm sending a few pics of these as well. Thanks in advance for your time and help. I love this site. Tracey <Do take a scan on/over WWM re these species... best to not let proliferate/cover too much of your LR. Bob Fenner>


To cut or not to cut, that is the question!   3/26/07 Hello again guys and gals! I wasn't sure what to think about this coral this morning when I came in, I noticed a small area on it that appears to be dead or dying tissue. (Close up) <I see this> see the light spot on the underside of the small "nub" sticking out? What would  that be? <Mmm... a sort of ecdysis perhaps... maybe a bitten off injury... could be a "stung" reaction area by another Cnidarian> This coral stays completely open and extended all day, this photo was  taken during the dawn hours of the tanks light cycle so this coral was just  opening.   Water  Parameters: PH - 8.4 during the day No3 - <2 Po4 - <.3 dKH - 12.5 Ca  - 400 NH4 - 0 No2 - 0 SG - 1.025 Temp - 76 - 78 degrees F Any input  on what this is or what to do would be wonderful, thank you so much! Brian  Crenshaw <I wouldn't do much of anything here... Do you utilize Iodine-ide in your system... See WWM re> PS sorry for the mix up with the photos! Also, any idea what the white spots are in the third  photo? <Mmm, maybe Ascidians... BobF>
Re: To cut or not to cut, that is the question!   3/27/07 Hello again Bob, How are you today? <Fine, but bushed... traveling> About the small white ovals I mentioned before, would it be possible that those might be coco worms developing? <Mmm, no not likely> Mine have spawned twice now, and it has been about 2 - 3 weeks since the first time. Every time I do a  water change towards the end of my tanks dusk cycle with slightly cooler, and  slightly less saline water than what is in the main tank the male  coco worm gets to work sending his streamers of sperm out and almost as soon as  he is done the female starts sending out pink streams of eggs out into the water. I do plan on experimenting and testing this further but those conditions seem to work like a charm. It is quite fun to watch, like a discovery channel special! <Sounds great... Perhaps a more "close-up" photograph...> The leather coral I mentioned in the previous email seems to be doing alright, it shed off some skin yesterday and seems to be a bit more  perky today. I was (am) thinking that perhaps it was stung by my torch coral.  About three weeks ago I was moving some things around in the tank and I  bumped one of the torches heads pretty hard (I felt terrible about it) and early  last week I noticed that head starting to "wither away" it is now nearly  completely gone, no sign of any kind of infection ex: brown jelly or any other  type that I am aware of. While this head was wearing away could a piece have  broken off been caught by the current and blown into the leather stinging it on  impact and causing that kind of damage? <Mmm, yes> As far as the damaged area of the  leather coral is concerned should I remove it, or just keep an eye on it? <I'd do the latter> Would  it possibly grow back? <Yes, certainly> Also, with no sign of infection on the torch, should  anything be done to it, or am I doing the right thing by just watching it for  further problems? <Read... on WWM re Euphylliid, Scleractinian Disease/s...> Current water parameters in the aquarium are still the same: PH - 8.4 during the day No3 - <2 Po4 - <.3 dKH -  12.5 Ca  - 400 NH4 - 0 No2 - 0 SG - 1.025 Temp - 76 - 78  degrees F There is a bit of sponge growth in the tank now too, I found 6 Syconoid sponges growing on a couple of pieces of live rock. From the readings I have taken from the tank, I know the dKH is high, but does anything else look off to you? <No> I read on WWM that these sponges typically grow if the tank has poor skimming, over feeding, basically poor water quality. I have been feeding the tank very lightly every other day, mainly for the inverts 3 cleaner shrimp, 7 Nassarius snails, and lots and lots of amphipods. After I did the water  change I also had a brown algae bloom, it mainly appeared on the sand bed  wherever light hits it, and in small patches on a few live rocks, it looks a bit  slimy so I am guessing perhaps that some of what I am seeing might be bacteria rather than algae? <Possibly> I really hope my microscope gets here today. I am considering purchasing some Cerith snails to stir up the sand bed more, would this in your opinion be a wise purchase? <Are useful species>
Thank you,
Brian Crenshaw
Re: follow up on "coral surgery". Alcyoniid hlth.   4/4/07 Hello Bob, How are you today? <Fine my friend, thank you> I wanted to let you know the Sinularia coral with the stung and dying patch on it is doing great now, I took it out of the display tank and placed it in a large casserole dish mostly full of aquarium water where I used an Exacto knife to cut away the dead and infected tissue. I also use vinyl gloves any time I am handling corals so my skin oils don't damage any parts of them. <Very good> After the "surgery" I then placed the coral in a Lugol's dip for 17 minutes and then let it sit in some clean salt water of the same temperature, specific gravity, ph, and so on of the aquarium for about 2 hours where it did shed some skin. Today it is open, perky and looking loads better! I did have a couple of other questions for you. You mentioned in the previous email that it is not a good Idea to place 2 Sinularia sp. corals in the same aquarium, <Correct... they compete for space in the wild... a dispersal mechanism... helps to ensure survival of the species...> I have no idea if mine are clones or not, and I am not sure how to tell. They do seem to be doing well though, and have been for a month now (not long I know). What is the danger in keeping these together? Should I leave them together if they seem to be fine, and do something if the situation becomes other than favorable? <No likely need for overt reaction... just something to be aware of...> Or would you recommend removing one right away? I also have a large Cladiella sp. coral in this tank that is doing quite well, all three corals are on different levels of the tank, the Cladiella sp. is at the highest point in the tank almost 4 inches from the surface and loves it! I am doing bi-weekly water changes on the tank until the new filtration system arrives. All animals are doing well, I figured out what the white ovals in the tank are (we talked about those in a previous email), they turned out to be Nerite snail eggs, <Ahh!> now all 4 species of snail introduced intentionally into the aquarium have reproduced. My coco worms have twice now in front of my fiancĂ©© and I. Today I noticed my feather dusters seem to be splitting into two, I am guessing this is a form of asexual reproduction. I now have 5 Xenia colonies where there was once one, and my Anthelia coral has now become 7 colonies! My crocea clams are also showing wonderful growth! Have you ever heard of Life Reef Filtration Systems by Jeff Turcheck? <Yes> If so, what is your opinion on his products? <Their products appear to be well made> I was considering getting a filtration system made by him. Yesterday we also introduced our first fish back to the reef after nearly 5 weeks of the aquarium running fallow. He had been in quarantine for 4 weeks and was losing weight from not eating, he is very healthy other than that. He is stuffing himself with amphipods and small crustaceans in the sand and rock, and seems extremely happy! He likes sitting in places where he can "people watch". My last question for you is about 3 "Yasha haze" gobies I have, they have had some black spots on them for what must be 2 weeks now, I can't Identify what they are, I have done freshwater dips with Methylene blue, and they are in quarantine with copper in the system, any suggestions or ideas on what this might be? <Likely just some sort of "stress markings"... I would not expose such small fishes to long periods of quarantine or much chemical use> I will try to get some good photos to send you so you can see what I am dealing with on them. As always thank you for your help and time Bob! Brian Crenshaw
<Thank you. Bob Fenner>
Re: Sinularia hlth., repro.   4/13/07 Hello Bob and Crew! I had another concern to run by you today. My Sinularia sp. coral is having a possible issue again. I don't know if you remember what happened before or not but my Sinularia coral had a small branch that developed a white (ish) area on it. We both agreed that it was most likely stung and infected. I had cut the infected branch off and it is almost completely healed now and doing great. Now, however there is another branch doing it and this time I know it wasn't injured. Could this be some form of reproduction? <Mmm, possibly> I know some corals will drop branches and those will attach to substrate and grow. Have you seen/ heard of this type of coral doing that? <Yes> The "infected" area seems to spread around the arm to be dropped and thins out an area until it breaks off. At least it seems so, when I was cutting the arm off of it the first time it just broke off, then I cut the rest of the light area off. What would you recommend I do with this coral? Thank you as always for your time and consideration. Take care, Brian <Have heard/read of this "dispersal mechanism"... a version of "fragmentation", asexual reproduction... Does it portend something "missing", "overly-stressful" in this colony's environment? Bob Fenner>


Dying mumps leather coral   3/23/07 Dear Crew, <Elizabeth> Recently, I added a piece of Fiji (cured) rock, a Firefish, a 6 line wrasse, a hairy mushroom coral, and a mumps leather <Lobophytum...> into my mini reef (there is only a few established pieces of rock other than the previously mentioned).  Water quality is good, lighting, skimming, etc.  After acclimation, the 6 line was great, the hairy mushrooms are thriving ... the Firefish died within 24 hrs and the mumps coral had a small black lesion on it.  I didn't know that I should've taken care of this ... now, I do.  Several days later, the mumps coral had a thick coat of slime on it. <Mmm, not atypical behavior...>   I called the LFS and they told me to let it go and it was just acclimating.  But then ... tonight ... it disintegrated into the water. <Best to remove once loose...>   All that is left of it ... is a couple spines and a white fleshy foot. <Oh! The Soft Coral itself! Yikes> I am over my head here ... but I am assuming it is dead, correct? <Likely so> Do I remove it from the tank? <I would, yes> The LFS said to let it be and it might regrow? <Not likely... I'd at the very least carefully (scoop it up in a container underwater), move this to isolation> Hmm ... I will only keep two fish in my 20 gallon tank - <... too small...> so I need to find a good match for the wrasse and do lots of reading on corals! <Is too small for this wrasse as well...> I won't trust the LFS anymore ... :( Thanks for anything you can tell me, Liz <Mmm, start reading here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/alcyoniids.htm and onto the linked files above. Bob Fenner>

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