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Rhipocephalus longifolius, Pinecone Algae. To five inches in height. Look like pinecones of sorts, with overlapping thalli growing outright from a single, attached stalk. Cozumel 2017
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Updated 3/17/2018
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by Robert (Bob) Fenner

Worm Identification Help      3/17/18
I've never had an aquarium worm before but after introducing new aquarium plants and 5 Habrosus Cories, I've discovered this little guy wiggling in my tank about 12 hours later.
10 gallon freshwater aquarium
Heated to about 78 degrees F
Filtered with homemade filter (bio/mechanical + a PhosGuard bag, no carbon component)
Planted/has Fluval brand root tabs in substrate
The tank is a recent upgrade from my 3 gallon with new bagged substrate, some established plants, and my resident female Betta splendens (she's been with me over six months). I added some Jungle Val, Anacharis, and Sword to the tank yesterday, along with about 5 more pounds of substrate - all locally sourced from little fish stores, and 5 Habrosus Corydoras.
Fortunately, my female Betta is in a hanging breeder box to acclimate to her new tankmates before reintroduction. I selected this LFS because I had been told that they pre-quarantine their livestock, so I'm hoping this squirming ride-along isn't dangerous to my tank. If it is something to be concerned about, what steps should I take for removal/treatment??
<Appears to be an annelid, Oligochaete... Relation to earthworms. Not parasitic; not dangerous for you or your fishes... I'd just siphon or net out and remove. This worm was very likely a hitchhiker on a plant>
Thank you so much!
Concerned Fish Mom,
<Cheers, Bob Fenner>

Can you Id this?      3/17/18
Hello Bob and WetWetMedia Friends,
<Hey Raul>
I took a picture of a Berghia Nudibranch and I noticed something else on the picture.
<Nice pix!>
Something I have seen over some mushrooms.
Can you identify the thing the arrow is pointing at, that you can see covering the mushrooms in the other 2 pictures?
<Oh yeah>
Is it a plague? A parasite? Or is something normal the mushrooms have?
<These are flatworms... some folks lose their minds launching attacks against such... best to be patient, perhaps add a biological control (predator). Let's have you read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/flatworms.htm
and the linked files above re>
Thank you.
Best regards,
Raul Labastida
<Welcome! Bob Fenner>

Injured Danio      3/17/18
Hi guys!
<Hello Susan,>
One of my long fin zebra Danios was discovered stuck head down in a section of my tank's driftwood yesterday.
<Not good.>
I found him a couple of weeks ago in the same predicament. Fortunately, I only had to tilt the wood to one side for him to swim free. He is pretty scraped up on one side with his scales roughed up and a red spot under his pectoral fins that now juts out at his side at a 90° angle. Since his injury he is being bullied by the other Danios in his school, although he continues to swim with them. Last night I noticed the redness was more pronounced and he wasn't coming up to eat so I decided to move him to a 5 gallon hospital tank with a cycled sponge filter.
<Fish generally don't "get stuck" though I have seen Corydoras catfish stuck inside hollow ornaments because of their spines, and if they can't escape quickly enough to take a gulp of air, such catfish can drown. No, normally when we see fish "stuck" somewhere, they've actually drifted there, unable to swim strongly enough to control where they're going. Think of them more like a bit of flotsam, drifted up onto a beach somewhere. Sometimes the problem can be over-strong water currents rather than anything wrong with the fish in question. Bettas for example find it hard to swim because of their very long fins, so need tanks with gentle water currents. Artificial varieties of fish with veil-tails and other longer than normal fins may suffer from the same problem because their fins increase drag (imagine trying to swim in baggy, waterlogged clothes) while their swimming muscles are no stronger than those of normal fish.>
I hated to remove him from his school, but I wanted to treat with Kanaplex and give him some time away from the other bullies. I now think that he has probably been stressed and bullied all along.
<Quite likely. Danios are aggressive towards each other. I've kept them in groups of six, and find they fight all the time! I would definitely keep a big group, eight or more, and crucially, I would not mix regular and long-fin varieties, the latter being too "encumbered" to compete well, so (more) likely to end up at the bottom of the hierarchy.>
Question. Should I keep him in the hospital tank for the three days of treatment or is this just additional stress?
<A singleton Danio will be fine for a few days, even a couple of weeks if you need to medicate / re-medicate. Prioritise the medication instructions in terms of doses, etc. But when you return him/her to the main tank, certainly turn the lights off for a few hours to prevent bullying the "newcomer", or better yet, remove all of them temporarily, move some of the rocks or plants about, and then return all the Danios to what will seem, to them, a new habitat. This re-sets their hierarchy, and in many cases fixes bullying, especially if you can add a couple extra specimens of the same species at the same time.>
I could just treat the whole tank but I would have to find and remove my Nerites first; also I wasn't certain how my Corydoras would react to the meds.
<Antibiotics such as Kanamycin (what is in Kanaplex) should have no negative impacts on non-bacteria, so should be fine with snails and catfish. If you wanted to take your Nerites out though, you could probably keep them a few days in a large food container (such as a plastic ice cream container) holding a couple of litres of water. Kept somewhere warm, the snails should be fine for a few days, provided you did periodic water changes.>
Also, SeaChem stated somewhere in a forum that there may be some plant die back.
<Can't think why.>
I'm more concerned about my fish. The plants are just there to make them happy.
<Indeed. And again, just take a few cuttings, put them to one side, and return to the main tank if the existing plants look unhappy.>
<Cheers, Neale.>

Drill Live Rock      3/17/18
Potentially stupid question,
<Mmm; better asked though>
I would like to aquascape an existing tank with fish, inverts and softies.
If I drill live rock and place back in my display tank will the newly drilled rock release anything which could be toxic to my current livestock?
Many thanks,
<Not any more than if it was not drilled. The principal concern with new live rock is how "cured" it is (see WWM re); that is, the die-off that occurs with the trauma of collection, processing, shipping, being moved to new circumstances. If/once the new LR is sufficiently cured there should be no problems with introducing it drilled or not to your system. Bob Fenner>

Sponsoring your site      3/17/18
Hi Bob,
<Hey Jess>
I am looking to get our site, https://fishlab.com listed in your "general links to Aquatic/Aquarium Internet Sites" - it's a resource designed to help beginners with many of the problems they will encounter while setting up and maintaining their aquarium.
<Ahh; will post later today>
I would also like to donate some money to go towards your sites upkeep - it's a great resource that I have personally used in the past.
<If so, the "Donate" button/link on each page is the best route to go.
Thank you>
What is the best way to sort all this out?
Best Wishes!
<Thank you for your efforts. Bob Fenner>

Moray Eel Prognosis      3/16/18
Good morning!
<Hi Sydney.>
The recent nor’easter hit while my family was away on a ski trip, and we were not informed of the power outage in our community until about 36 hours after it had started. As a result, I lost all but one inhabitant of my FOWLR setup, a 15” chain moray who somehow survived without any filtration or heat for nearly three days. In the weeks since the outage, Eunis has escaped from her tank twice.
<Check the water parameters, esp. Ammonia, Nitrates and pH. Power outage can result not only in dying fishes, but also bacteria and invertebrates, which can lead to declining water quality. There usually is a reason when settled moray eels try to leave a tank. Maybe it's the water quality here. Do a large water change if that's the case. In addition, I'd use some cover to prevent the eel from escaping.>
I was worried for a while that she wouldn’t make it, but as of yesterday, she ate!
<Very good.>
My question from here regards her prognosis. What is the likelihood that she’ll make a full recovery? Also, how will I know that she’s out of the woods?
<If your moray eel eats the prognosis are quite good (provide a varied diet, maybe add vitamins, see WWM re). Refusing food usually is the first thing they do when they don't feel well. Chainlink morays, Echidna catenata, are a very hardy species. I'm not surprised it's the last survivor und hope it has taken no permanent damage.>
Thank you so much for your time!
Regards, Sydney Weaver
<Good luck! Cheers, Marco.>

Palythoa- sundial Heliacus. Removal       3/16/18
<Salve Marcelo>
I want to remove Palythoa naturally.
<A fave, oft-misused adverb...>
My tank is only 16 gallons but due to corals on the live rocks and not easy to take them out I wanted to try a natural method.
I read on your website that sundial snails only eat Zoas and Palythoa.
<Mmm; not only>
However another place online also mentioned they eat sea anemone.
This made me nervous as I have a mini-maxi carpet anemone in my tank.
I wanted to get a sundial snail to naturally eat my Palythoa but do not want to irritate or have the sundial snail try to eat my mini-maxi carpet anemone. There are Palythoa on the same rock as my anemone and the anemone has been on the same rock for about 6-7 years so don’t want him moving of course.
Is there anyway to get verification from your experience?
<Not from me unfortunately; no>
Secondly- will they also eat clove polyps? Not worried if they did, just curious.
<Again; I don't know>
Lastly, I searched online and cannot find anyone selling the snail should I even want to try one. Are they illegal to bring in or just not sold since most hobbyists don’t want them since they eat Zoas?
<Considered pests, yes; not illegal. Have only seen/encountered as hitchhikers>
Look forward to any assistance you can provide as not interested in covering with Kalk, trying to chip off rocks, injecting with hot water or lime with a needle, etc.
<I STRONGLY encourage you to read/investigate further, and use an "unnatural" means to rid your system of Zoanthids. As this is a small tank, likely little rock involved to be replaced, I would remove the desired organisms and put the Zoanthid containing rock outdoors, some place where animals can't get to it... Allow it to dry, process for re-use as just rock, or toss it>
I do run carbon and gfo which helps neutralize the poison which is perhaps I have never had any issues the 10+ years I have had them but I don’t want to take a chance after reading more stories about how they can become airborne or even affect experts unexpectedly at times.
<You are wise to be cautious here. Bob Fenner>
Best regards,
Marcelo Rodriguez

Kalk / vinegar      3/15/18
Good afternoon Bob. Hope the knee is getting better.
<Thank you John; not yet>
I was wondering if you could offer any “rule of thumb” on how much vinegar I need to add per gallon of Kalk to extend its shelf life? Thanks!
<Mmm, the simplest organic acid, acetic; aka vinegar... is unfortunately not a very consistent product; and you don't mention what amount of Kalk you're adding per volume. I'd like to offer this quote:
"I add 60ml of vinegar to a gal of Kalk. I keep my Kalk concentration at 2tsp per gal. Use it as a carbon source and to help keep the Kalk in solution better. 60gal cube with 10gal sump. I add 600ml/day of Kalk which is roughly 9.1ml of vinegar dosed a day"
as reasonable for a start. I would caution you to measure/monitor nutrient (NO3) levels, as you may find that your Nitrate in particular drops precipitously, depriving chemosynthetic and photosynthetic life of necessary fertilizer. Bob Fenner>
Re: Kalk / vinegar

Cool! Thanks Bob!
<Pleasure. B>

To Marco- Help with Moray Eel disease      3/15/18
<Hello Adrian.>
I could really need some help treat our infected moray eels. They have gotten a blood sucking worm that only attacks the eels. It look like brown hairy looking strings.
<Looks nasty. Can't definitely ID them, though.>
We have tried cleaner wrasse and shrimp and freshwater dip. My boss confirms its not anchor worms and we don't have any medicine currently to treat it. The only working solution we have found is removing it manually, but
they spread again after a short while.
<Can you get Flubenol 5% in Norway? (I think so) It's often used for e.g. chickens or pigs as well as fishes and kills a wide range of internal and external worms. Only use it in a hospital tank without sand (but some PVC pipes as caves) or use it as baths/dips. Siphon the bottom of the tank for any eggs (or cysts depending on what they are exactly. If you can't get Flubenol you can also try some product with Praziquantel.>
The eels came infected from Indonesia but it took a while before we noticed it. Best Regards Adrian
<Good luck. Marco.>
*I attached a picture of the worms

Author contact      3/15/18
I am a seasoned aquarist and have recently read and enjoyed an article on your site “stocking Lake Malawi community tanks” by Mary Bailey. I have a couple questions I would like to ask the author to clarify a couple of things as I am about to start my first Lake Malawi tank, and the article has been very helpful to me. Just have a few questions for her.
Any info you could provide would help. Thank you.
Pete Wortman.
West Long Branch NJ.
<I would try writing her Care Of Tropical Fish Hobbyist Magazine... in NJ! Bob Fenner>

Copper treatment, incl. marine Velvet f'... Using WWM      3/15/18
Good evening from Thailand
as I had a bad Marine Velvet outbreak in a tank (fish with life rock only)
I am now having the survivors go through a Cupramine treatment. This started a few days ago and copper levels are sitting nice at the recommended 0.5 ppm and fish seem to be behaving ok still eating well.
(think even noticing some of the survivors showing the parasite previous losing them??)
Some snails I had in there and crabs seem to have died
<!? Yes; of a certainty from the copper exposure. ALL non-fish life needs to be elsewhere; lest they be poisoned AND absorb the copper>

which I knew was going to happen but I figured getting the tank Velvet free and in the same time treat the survives superseded the snails and crab as they can be reintroduced at a later stage again...Now I am wondering as I might want to add new fish to this set up
<What? No; don't add anything here until you're VERY sure the Velvet is gone>
as the suggested 30 day period is on going with every time a new fish is added we start counting back from day 1 I guess.....How long can fish be ok in this therapeutic level of copper and how dangerous is to add new fish
into a copper environment from buying them new...
<There is too much to answer, ask and respond to here by rekeying. But all is available by your searching on WWM re "Cupramine", "Velvet"... and READING. Do so, and write back w/ specific questions (if you have them) afterwards. Bob Fenner>

Re: Question part 2      3/13/18
Your response time is noting short of impressive. Thank you for that. So no carbon?
<Correct. I would not run carbon... of little use in this application (outdoors)>
I’m new to the world of ozone. I’ve been reefing for 20 years so I’m not a newbie by any means.
<Heeee! I remember trying to sell foam fractionators to customers forty some years ago... Ozone IS the route to go>
I’ve just read article after article where they say to run the discharge over carbon... so is the ORP basically the concentration of O3 in the system?
<It really is indirectly... a bit bizarre concept (and I taught H.S. chemistry and physics... have tried to give hobbyist presentations on its practical applications...); use to be gauged by micro ohms per cm... a unit of electrical resistance. The co. Siemens is so big, the standard was changed to reflect their name... now microsiemens/cm.!>
<Cheers, BobF>
Re: Question part 2      3/13/18

Thanks Bob! Have a great day.
<Thank you John; am trying to... I bunged a knee up five days back in Huahine, have come back to the states a week early... no real rest... a mess, tired and painful... Ugh. B>
Re: Question part 2      3/13/18

Pisser. I’m dealing with a blown out shoulder and have been putting off surgery.
<Oh... I DO encourage your patience, skepticism here... Sis Donna has had the Dickens w/ shoulder surgery, as well as a good friend in the Hash House Harriers... in fact, no one comes to mind who has had "altogether" successful such>
Hope you get better soon!
<Thank you. B>

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