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Bristle/Fireworms FAQs 4

Related FAQs: Bristle/Fireworms 1, Bristle/Fireworms 2, Bristle/Fireworms 3, Worm Identification, Polychaete Identification, Polychaete Behavior, Polychaete Compatibility, Polychaete System, Polychaete Selection, Polychaete Feeding, Polychaete Disease, Polychaete Reproduction,

Related Articles: Worms, Polychaetes, Flatworms/Planaria,

How long is too long for dried worm eggs?   6/17/16
Hi folks!
Been dry for almost four years, since Sandy. Just filled the 55 this week. I had my live rock in water with heat and PH the whole time (fed it now and then) and drained the tank after a quick clean-up, but I left everything dry. I was wondering, if there were any Bristleworm eggs in the sand, would they survive dry all this time?
I know brine shrimp can go a few years dry, but I have no idea about worms or any other critters that may have laid eggs before dying.
I am really stoked about getting this up and running, and I hope saving what I could will make it happen quickly. I'm getting a pair of A. ocellaris back from a friend of mine. I gave them to him 6 years ago, when they were just 4 months old, and now they've just started laying eggs. I don't expect to be remembered, but I had quite a bit of back-n-forth with
several of the crew in early 2010. To refresh your memories, the baby clown on page 5 of the clownfish breeding section is one of mine. Yep, I'm THAT guy, hehe.
<Welcome back!>
If you folks think the worms are gone forever, I'll see about getting a cup of sand from a friend.
<Yes, I would>
Very much thanks,
<Welcome. Bob Fenner>
Re: How long is too long for dried worm eggs?       8/18/16
Hi Bob!
<Salud Sal>
Much appreciate your quick response ;) I wasn't too hopeful I would get bonus bristles, but I had to check with the worm guy. Really appreciate all the time you and the entire crew puts in at WWM. Just referred a friend today and expect he'll be scrubbing for info.
Be well,
<Thank you, BobF>

for bob Fenner: will a Eunice worm still kill my stuff if i feed it?    9/4/13
<Dat; where ya from? Native (English) speaker?>
will it always be in the same place to feed it or will it move around the tank?
<Errantiate Polychaete...>
  it is as thick as the end of a shoe lace.  it took a frozen mysis shrimp today.  how much/often should i feed it?  thanks
<See WWM re. B>

Too many Bristleworms? 10/13/11
Hello all,
I have had a 46 gallon reef tank for about five years. I recently have begun to see a huge amount of bristle worms. My Coral Banded Shrimp, 3 plus years in the tank, died a few months ago.
<Ahh, the Stenopid may have been thinning the herd>
A couple of these worms are huge! Should I put in another predator?
<Mmm, maybe. Read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/polychaewmcompfaq2.htm
and the linked files above>
Thanks for your help.
<Welcome Kar. Bob Fenner>

Scary Bristle Worm 3/20/11
Hi Folks,
Not asking questions today, just wanted to drop a line and a pic. I had put some fresh algae in the tank for the crabs and saw this guy coming out to munch, and coming out, and coming out. He never did fully leave the rock he is hiding under and from what I could see its at least 6-8 inches in length.
Have a great day and thanks for all of the help you give us.
<Tis a beauty. I'd call him Boris. BobF>

Bristle Worm bad news? Reading -- 01/30/10
Hey Guys,
I have some live rock that's been sitting in my tank for 5 months now and I'm starting to see all sorts of new things growing on and apparently inside it.
I'm told the bristle worm is ok is that true or should I inject lemon juice into its hole?
What do you guys think, is he big enough to pose a danger to my clown pair.
<... read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/polychaecompfaqs.htm
and the linked files above>
Also I have a question about some of the other things, this clam shaped creature, the bell shaped one in the 3rd in the middle of the image
<... there is no image attached>
Anything else I should be concerned about on this colorful rock?
Thank you so much for having all this help!!!
Starting this first tank has been quite an experience.
<Enjoy, and keep reading. Bob Fenner>

Re: Bristle Worm bad news? 1/31/2010
Thanks again,
Sorry about there being no pics, here they are. This is the bristle worm
<Right. Read where you were referred. B>

Bristle worm danger? Reading 9/29/08 Hi, I have a reef tank with a Heteractis crispa anemone which I have only owned for one week. Today while attempting to feed it I noticed as it retracted a small red worm (1 or 2 inches long) presumably a bristle worm poking out of the sand just under where the anemone had been. he appeared to be reaching for the anemone when it moved. I have read that a few varieties of worms prey on anemones and was wondering if you think this one could be a risk and whether I should attempt to remove it (if I can find it again). Any advice would be much appreciated. <I wouldn't "panic" here... there are MANY species of such worms... most innocuous> Also as I mentioned earlier I was attempting to feed my anemone (about 6 inches across), since bringing it home it has been reluctant to feed. <... see WWM re> It still has its tan colour and is open all the time (appears healthy) but its tentacles are relatively short and wide (not long and thin like most sources suggest). Could this be a sign that he is beginning to waste away. <Mmm, not likely> I keep him in an 18 inch high tank under a 250W 20,000K metal halide which I assume is enough light and the nitrates are very low (undetectable), pH is about 8.3. There are currently no fish in the tank as it is new (but well matured (9 months old)). If you have any tips on how to make it feed that would be much appreciated as I don't want it to starve. I have been feeding small pieces of shrimp which it is yet to take any of, it grabs hold and just lets it go again after a few minutes. Thanks for your time. <Here: http://wetwebmedia.com/sebaefdgfaqs.htm and the linked files above. Bob Fenner>

Bristleworms, reading, Entacmaea repro., reading... and reading period 8/3/08 Greetings, Last night I found a huge bristleworm in my 75 gal. reef tank. Often I am able to catch smaller ones in my attached seahorse tank but there is no way for me to get into my reef rockwork without causing damage. I keep finding conflicting info on these. Some say there are no harmless types and others say they are great to have. I have seen smaller ones but this one was ginormous! <Most Errantiate polychaetes are "harmless" to what petfish hobbyists keep... of the thousands of species of these annelids, only a few show up that are predaceous... Read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/polychaecompfaqs.htm and the linked files above...> Also, I have a bubble tipped anemone that has been growing and growing in my reef tank. I know I am not supposed to have it with my reef but for four years he/she has been growing on one end while my mixed reef is at the other. I just love them all but it really is huge. I wondered how I can encourage it to split. <Either very good, or stressful conditions seem to trigger such asexual fission... you might try directing a powerhead flow more toward it... or increasing lighting...> thanks for any advice you can give. Cathy Wilkins <... read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/btareprofaqs.htm Please follow directions... search before writing... Bob Fenner>

Bristle Worm 5/1/07 Hi, I love the site and the book. I tried to register but the site said registration was unavailable. <Thanks.> I recently set up my 110 gallon marine aquarium and bought some nice live rock. A week ago, I noticed some tentacles sticking out of the rock at night. It never seemed to move much, but it did extend more at night. After doing some research on the internet, I am pretty sure I am up against a bristle worm. <Up against? They are quite helpful actually.> The only thing that confuses me is that it has a very thin, long segment extending from the main segment (see picture). <Not sure what that is, may just be a genetic thing with this particular worm.> Anyway, tonight I was successful at grabbing it with a pair of tweezers--try as I might to pull slowly, it broke off. I did manage to get a large section off, but who knows how much is left and I'm sure they regenerate. <Yep, but no big deal.> I have attached two pictures and am hoping that someone can confirm that I do indeed have a bristle/fire worm (hopefully, I didn't just pull the leg off something beneficial). <Looks like one to me, however they are generally quite helpful and efficient detritivores.> Thanks! Andy <Chris>
Re: Bristle Worm 5/2/07
Thanks for the reply. <Sure.> One follow up question--almost every internet site, book, magazine article, etc. I've looked at claims that bristle/fire worms are the plague. <Rarely cause a problem, only when they are in huge numbers, which really just indicated poor husbandry. Otherwise they are some of the best detritivores out there.> Your reply seems to indicate that one should leave them in place (I assume unless you have corals)? <I would and do. Check out these FAQs for more http://www.wetwebmedia.com/polychaeidfaqs.htm > <Chris>

Bristle worms, problem or not? 7/14/06 I have a 37gal marine tank with 5 spotted/leopard puffers, a couple or turbo snails, a few brittle stars, and a few miscellaneous mushrooms and anemones. <These last... may become a problem in time. See WWM once you've determined the species here> My question is if bristle worms are detrimental to the setup that I have put together? <Mmm, no. Highly unlikely> I am unfamiliar with the specific identification of the multitude of worms that are out there. I know that many are beneficial and can help with keeping things clean in a aquarium, it's just a little nasty to see a bunch or bristle worms crawling out of rocks and out of the sand when the light goes off. The attached photo is the closes picture of what I'm dealing with. Are the good, bad (I know they're ugly) and what would be a safe way to reduce their number? thanks, love the site <No pic unfortunately. You have read here?: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/polychaecompfaqs.htm and the linked files above? Bob Fenner>

- Weird question 6/16/06 - Can Spirorbids attach themselves to a Pyramid Cowfish? Thanks, Teri <Hmm... can they? Perhaps. Are they likely to? Not very. Cheers, J -- >

Bristle worm infestation - 03/25/2006 Dear WWM Crew, My name is Josh and I was looking through different FAQ's and sites about bristle worms it seems that I have a bunch in my tank, I have a 55 gal. tank and every time I introduce a skunk cleaner shrimp it lasts only a night or two, I have also noticed that my hermit crab population has been cut in half and I also have found a couple of dead emerald crabs I have read that they can be detrimental to a reef tank, I also read that they can kill small fish which I was wondering if they would kill my green mandarin dragon, I was wondering if you could give me some advice on how to completely eradicate them <... not likely worms killing your invertebrates... Please read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/polychaecompfaqs.htm and the links above... Bob Fenner>

Featherduster lost his dusters - 1/30/2006 Hi, I've looked over your site and I couldn't quite find an answer to my question. <Didn't look hard enough. Should find info pertaining to that here. http://www.wetwebmedia.com/featherfaq2.htm> About three weeks ago I bought a feather duster and he was doing great, but then my blue damsel continually picked at his feathers and he discarded his head. its been two weeks now and he still hasn't grown it back. How long does this usually take? He is still alive because when I poke the tube gently it shakes as he retracts. Is there anything I can do to aid him in his regeneration? <Shawn, in future queries please cap all "i's" and the beginning of a sentence. Saves us much time if we don't have to edit. Thanks, James (Salty Dog)> Thanks, Shawn

Bristle (Polychaete worms) Overpopulation - 10/24/05 Hello all! <Greetings!> It has been some time since we have spoken so hope you are all well and happy. <I am, thank you for asking.> I would first like to forever thank you , both for myself , and for the other millions of reef keepers/farmers that you so diligently assist. We would often be totally lost w/o the information you provide. <Thanks for the kind words.> Now , on to my problem. I have a very small, but trying to get bigger, reef farm. I have had an on-going trouble with one of my sets of growth tanks and I believe that I have finally discovered the culprits...Bristle worms. I understand that normally they are beneficial and not to be concerned with , but my tanks are literally churning with them. If you feed at all the entire bottom comes to life . You can't even see the substrate. <Yes that would definitely define an overpopulation.> I am certain that I have found what is happening to my livestock! <Well an over population of bristles usually points toward a nutrient problem, its possible your livestock could be suffering from the nutrients and not the bristles. Though an overpopulation of these creatures can lead to undesired feeding behaviors including attacking sessile inverts.> <<Not just nutrient problem per se, but overpopulation of bristles means there is a great deal of excess detritus. Being detritivores they are doing you a favor. MH>> In these particular tanks I am raising both Clowns, with their corresponding Anemone, and multiple forms of coral, trying to stay diversified. <Ok.> I have tried to do all my parasite control naturally. I have taken this approach since the beginning of this undertaking. Tired of reefs being **destroyed**... <For posting purposes I changed that word. While I do agree some collectors are rather irresponsible in their practices of wild collection many more are conscientious and collect without much impact or damage to the area. Though you are right in the fact the aquacultured specimens are preferred.> for our enjoyment and I am hoping to put some back someday. <A good idea but you can do more damage to the ocean by introducing unknown pathogens, please don't release specimens back into the wild.> We must all do our part. I have been reading a lot about Wrasses on the site and am now thoroughly confused as to which I should try. I am tending towards either a Yellow Fin or a Sixline. Any recommendations. <I would go with the Sixline wrasse but if you have a nutrient problem adding more fish may not be a good idea. Look into some sort of further nutrient control whether it be a refugium or extra water changes, larger protein skimmer…> I have lost untold dollars to these pests . Both in corals and in Anemones, and need to get them under control within reason. I don't want to destroy my ecosystem either. What are your recommendations in this matter? <See above.> I have even tried to fashion traps to assist in their removal. Please help! <Read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/bristlewrmfaqs.htm , Adam J.>

Re: Bristle (Polychaete worms) Overpopulation 10/25/05 Hello again <Hello!> First , I would like to elaborate...I would NEVER introduce ANY species of creature, coral or otherwise, into any eco system w/o first approaching a restoration facility . <Glad to see we're on the same page.> I am full aware that many systems have been destroyed by the introduction of the tiniest of creatures. My goal is to raise some of the species native to my area and, through the marine-biological community in my area, re-introduce some of the species that may have been over harvested to the point of near extinction. (Sorry for my verbiage in my last email) <No worries didn't offend me at all, its just that a lot of kids frequent the forum including my siblings.> I have become quite outspoken on the subject and did not consider the harshness of that words. My apologies. I will put more thought into it next time. <Don't stress about it just proves you are zealous for your dream, that's not a bad thing.> As far as the condition at hand. My primary means of filtration is a refugium. I also am using an oversized protein skimmer for my application. <Both are very good.> The collection cup seems to be storing a sufficient amount of refuse. Most of the coral feeding that I am doing is via suspended liquids so I wouldn't believe that the bristle worms would consider it a viable food source. I may be wrong. <It is possible, many liquid products become excess nutrients contributing to pollution which indirectly can affect the bristle problem.> Nitrate and Ammonium levels are well within allowable ranges. <How is your water flow along the bottom of the tank, maybe too much detritus is settling?> Nearly nil. I have been reading about using a small glass jar sunk into the substrate with holes in the lid. I guess that I will try that next. My LFS has had a multitude of problems getting Sixlines since all the storms have been pummeling Florida. I will also get one of them ASAP. <Be sure to Quarantine it.> Thank you again for the prompt email and God Bless. <No trouble and you are welcome, Adam J.>

The Detested Bristle Worm - A Wife's Lament >Dear Bob and crew >>Hello, Marina today. >This is the demented wife of a 90 gallon aquarium keeper. >>Umm.. how do I respond to someone's ready admission to being demented? Good for you to be so honest! >Said Tank is 18months old and doing nicely to the point where I like it as well. However over the last few months we seem to have had an explosion of bristle worms. >>Hm, yes. This is your first clue. And how do you feel about this? Please, lie down on this couch over here, Mrs. Wife-to-90-Gallon-Aquarium-Keeper. Actually, this is quite telling. Read on! >They don't seem to be doing much harm until recently when husband has had problems keeping control of the nitrate level.. >>BINGO! Second clue alert. >..and this is really weird now.. did a water change last week and about half hour later all the worms (which is a lot now) appeared in daylight and appeared to excrete white stuff into the water as if it was too clean. >>For one so demented you sure are smart. This 'event' can spur a breeding event. Guess what! You're going to be a grandmother to a new batch of pink, fuzzy bristle worms. >Some are over 12 inches long and we are desperate to get rid of these bigger ones, (Have heard that smaller ones don't cause too many problems). >>Actually, except for the lovely form they cut, the larger ones don't present much of a problem either. Being detritivores means that they'll only eat that which is sloughed/dead, but will not kill anything outright. This is your third clue, dear wife of his. >We have a Sixline wrasse but he seems pretty useless. >>Indeed, is he not but a fraction of 12"? Arrow crabs are known to feast on these pests, but as a solution can often be worse than the original problem. >Traps yield babies but not much else, how can we get rid of these gross worms I detest? Plus they even fight our hermits for meat now and seem stronger than them I feel we have been over run Help!!! Many thanks, Helen - a learning very slowly wife >>Not so slow is she! BRILLIANT, like Guinness in a bottle, I declare. So, Helen, you see the worms, clue number one. You see nitrate levels come up, clue number two. You have just learned that bristle worms are detritivores, eaters of detritus, that is clue number three! So, believe it or not, the problem is one of detritus, as bristle worms are lemmings for detritus. Reduce the detritus issue, resolve the bristle worm issue. I bet the big worms are big enough to get out of the traps, too, aren't they? Let's starve them, be careful, but thorough, with vacuuming the substrate, in sections please. Bio-Spira on hand may be the smart thing, too, if the vacuuming has been a bit vigorous. You'll likely need to blow out the crevices, etc., as well, in order to ensure that all pockets are cleaned. Do be careful if you smell a rotten egg odor, this means anaerobic conditions exist and can be catastrophic (this means have LOTS of new, but aged, saltwater on the ready for emergency water change - large trash can lined with black plastic is great for storage, etc.). Foam fractionation of the outrageous type would yield more excellent results. If I haven't answered your question well enough, write back and we'll try to hit this again. Marina Bristle Worms Hello all, <Hi, MikeD here> My question concerns Bristle worms, I have a 60 Gallons reef tank and after one year of it running ,I have turned over most of the live rocks. Upon doing this I have found easily a hundred Bristle worms.<I may not be the best one to answer this, as I tend to stay more to the FOWLR tanks with a wide assortment of marine creatures and forgo most of the corals due to water conditions associated with same, but I HAVE found populations of bristle worms similar to densities that you describe.> Is this ok?<While most feel that this is OK or even desirable, I've seen some evidence that would indicate they CAN have negative effects occasionally.> What purpose do they serve in my aquarium ?<In the home aquarium, they serve as scavengers in the LR to a degree that can be invaluable, particularly in heavily populated tanks, removing any and all organic matter that might work its way down into the crevices beyond the reach of almost anything else, thus helping to maintain water parameters.> Will they do any harm do the reef or other fish ?<Most information that I've seen seems to almost universally say no, while my own experience seems to be more middle of the road. I suspect that heavy populations can adversely affect development of many other desirable small life forms, such as small crustaceans and isopods upon which they will actively prey to the point that, like almost anything, too much of a good thing can tip the balance. My suggestion is that when you are rearranging LR and such, don't hesitate to use a pair of tweezers or forceps to thin them out occasionally.> Any help would be greatly helpful, Le Roy Hicks

Need help with Bristleworms in live rock 9/30/04 I'm really new to the hobby as far as salt water goes, and so far your site has helped me quite a bit. So a BIG thanks for that! <welcome!> The only question I haven't been able to find an answer to is this: I bought a 30 gallon tall tank, pre-set up. It came with red bristleworms already in the sand and rocks. <no worries... these are actually helpful detritivores whose population waxes and wanes with the load put upon it. If you overfeed or overstock, they will flourish... and if you run a tidy tank, they will be kept in check and live quite peacefully and useful> I'm thinking a few striped wrasse may help me out with the sand living half of the worms, but what about those hidden in the rock? < its a moot point - they can be almost wholly controlled by nutrient control. Good water flow, careful feeding, aggressive protein skimming, etc> Is there any way I can use some sort of acid bath to soak the rocks in and kill the worms? <this will kill far many other good things. It is not recommended> I only have four fish (two damsels, a maroon clown, and a grand Dottyback) and one anemone in the tank right now. <the Dottyback is actually a heavy predator on bristleworms... another wrasse cannot do much better> Would it be easier to eradicate these worms if I got rid of all the sand (it is currently a deep sand bed of 41/2 inches) and throw out the rock in favor of new, fresh stuff? Thanks for any help! Q <do read through our archives on the subject and consider our latest book "Reef Invertebrates" (see Amazon and others) with very good coverage if I may say so on these and other fascinating reef aquarium creatures. best regards! Anthony>

Battling Bristleworms... Is there a fish that will eat bristleworms? <Hi, Scott F. here to answer that question for you. There are actually a number of fishes that are known for eating bristleworms. Some of the Pseudochromis such as P. paccagnellae and P. sankeyi are especially noted for their "appetite" for these little worms. Unfortunately, the Dottybacks are also known for their belligerence! Other animals, such as Arrow Crab, are well-known for their bristleworm eating as well. Keep in mind, of course, that just because they are known for eating bristleworms, it does not guarantee that they will! Hope this steers you in the right direction. Regards, Scott F>

Questions About Bristleworms (3/8/04) Hello, <Howdy. Steve Allen tonight> I just recently discovered your website and have found all kinds of valuable information. <I've sure found a lot too.> I am having some trouble I hope you might be able to help me with. <I'll try.> I started a marine aquarium a little over a year ago. <How big?> I currently have a maroon clown, yellow tang, blue and gold damsel, and four margarita snails. The fish have done great, but I seem to be having trouble with invertebrates. <They are more sensitive.> I started by adding five turbo and a couple scarlet hermit crabs to help control algae. <Good nutrient control works better.> They did great for about a month then the snails started to die at a rate of about one a week. Then the crabs started to lose their vibrant red color and became quite pale. Pretty soon they died. I tested the water conditions as much as I could and found nothing. Ph, ammonia, nitrite and nitrate were normal. <Numbers, please. Any trace of ammonia or nitrite is not normal. Nitrate best <20 with inverts.> I have never added any copper based medications (any treatments are in a separate hospital tank) and though I mix my own water, I use a filter that is supposed to remove all chemicals and metals harmful to fish. <What sort of filter is that?> I have even added Cuprisorb to my aquarium filter just to make sure. <Might better use Polyfilter from Poly-Bio-Marine.> I even had one of the local fish stores test my water and they found nothing wrong. After a few months I decided to try some margarita snails. I started with ten, but they started dying within a week and after two months I am down to four. Is there something chemically that I might be missing? <It doesn't sound like it. IME, Margaritas are not very durable. Snails in general slowly die off, many from falling off the rock and being unable to right themselves. I'd be more worried if they all died with in a few days rather than weeks. Hard to day what happened to the hermits. Be sure to keep pH and salinity stable and shoot for 1.024-5 range on the SG and 8.1-8.3 pH for the benefit of inverts.> I did notice one evening shortly after adding the two snails that one had a bristle worm wrapped around it. <Hmm> This was the first time I noticed the bristle worms on my live rock. Later when I notice a couple of the snails had not moved in a while, I moved them and a bristle worm dropped out of the shell and there was no snail left. Is it more likely that the snail died the worms ate the remains or that the worms attacked and killed the snails? <Bristleworms are primarily detritivores/scavengers that ill gladly eat a dead snail.> I've read various responses concerning bristle worms and there seems to be different opinions on whether they are good or bad. <Yes, opinion is divided. The smaller ones generally do not pose a serious danger to anything.> > My live rock is covered with bristle worms, all small, but too many to count. Should I think about trapping them or get some predator? <You will never be able to catch enough of them to keep up with their reproduction. A predator would be better if your tank is big enough for another fish. A Six Line Wrasse (Pseudocheilinus hexataenia) might work.> I would like to expand and add an anemone or some soft corals, but I am not sure what kind of threat the bristle worms would be. <A controlled population should be Ok. Read more on the FAQs. I would advise you to read everything on WWM about anemones before buying one. I recommend soft corals instead.> I apologize for such a long email. I have researched every where I can and am not sure what course of action to take. I appreciate any help you can provide. <Happy to be of service. Hope this helps.> Thanks, Rob Heuser

Little Pink Worms 1/30/04 Dear Anthony: <cheers, Connie.. wonderful to know your smiling face for when we chat now :)> It was fun meeting you at long last - I hope you really enjoyed your visit to the SF area (you had a great hostess). <an outstanding visit... I only wish we had more time to chat> Your tips for making life easier while managing a tank were really helpful; we have yet to see whether or not we need a new DSB, everything seems to be "status quo" at the moment. <still good to hear> Question: I have been growing 'pods and etc. in my 30 gallon tank, but lately have notice a proliferation of tiny pink worms. My fish don't like to eat them and I am wondering if they are baby bristle worms and if I should keep adding them to my main tank or not. <quite possibly miniature Bristleworms... but harmless nonetheless. Rather helpful, in fact are fauna for the live substrates as detritivores> When I installed my DSB about 9 months ago I stocked it with a good quantity of bristle and "spaghetti" worms, The DSB seems pretty well aerated as it is. Can you advise what to do with these critters? <honestly... I'd ignore them. They can be controlled by limiting their nutrients (restrict food and/or increase water flow to divert particulates to the skimmer instead of their ready to breed members/mouths> As always, thanks for your help. Connie <very welcome my friend. Be chatting soon! Anthony> PS- did you get a chance to have that skimmer cleaned? And if so... is it working better?
Little Pink Worms II 2/1/04
Hi Anthony, Connie again here. <howdy, dear> We have decided to replace the DSB and are wondering if its okay to leave a couple of inches of the old sandbed in to help seed the new one. <Hmmm... seems like more risk than its worth. It would need to be extracted (and disturbed/rinsed as such) then replaced on top of the new bed. I suspect you are honestly worrying way too much about the good creatures you have accumulate dint he sand bed. Although I regret to sacrifice them too... you would like to correct the nutrient problem. And if you truly believe that the sand has become a nutrient sink to warrant the replacement, then you need to purge all of the old (nutrient rich) sand. No worries ... those creatures will return. Seed with literally just a handful/cup of old like sand> Present SB is mostly five inches but down to three or so in some spots. I don't want to keep any sand that has been fouled. <yes... agreed> Also, when we talked about saving the critters from the old for the new, I mentioned filtering with cheesecloth, but Joe said cheesecloth will not let the sand filter through. Your comments and suggestions would really be appreciated by both of us. Joe and Connie <the old live sand can be removed to a garbage can or other large plastic vessel (lower and longer would be better like underbed storage bins). You can then aerate the water above that sand and periodically siphon, trap, bait fauna to add to the new sand bed in the display at your leisure. Perhaps even rinsing the sand well at a later date after much has been extracted and reusing it or donating it. Best of luck! Anthony>

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