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FAQs about Nudibranchs 1

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Related FAQs: Nudibranchs 2, Berghia Nudibranchs, Nudibranch Identification, Nudibranch Behavior, Nudibranch Compatibility, Nudibranch Selection, Nudibranch Systems, Nudibranch Feeding, Nudibranch Disease, Nudibranch Reproduction, Sea Slugs, Marine Snails 1Marine Snails 2Marine Snails 3

A Phyllidia ocellata in Fiji

Nudibranch Identification I would greatly appreciate it if you could help me identify my Nudibranch, so I could find out what type of sponge he feeds on, or what type of food he needs.  I have had a very difficult time identifying it, and therefore am positive I am not providing the proper care for it like I would like to.  Any information you could give me I would sooooo greatly appreciate it.  Thank you.  The closest I got to identification is Durvilledoris lemniscata. Paul <Mmm, maybe... or a Chromodoris species. I would send this along to the folks at seaslugforum.net Bob Fenner>   sorry if the pic is a little difficult to decipher. 

Elysia crispata reproduction - Lettuce Nudibranch 11/21/04 Dear WWM Crew, About a year ago I purchased 3 Elysia crispata sea slugs to help combat the extensive growth of hair algae I had growing in my 150 gallon reef. Recently I have noticed 20 or more of what I am pretty sure are very tiny babies of this species.  (If this is so it doesn't say a lot of good things about the extent of my algae problem)   <agreed... the Nudibranchs are merely treating the symptom, and not the problem... which is likely a lack of adequate protein skimming if you are like most folks struggling with the same problem. If you own a good skimmer/design... tune and tweak it to produce near daily coffee-dark skimmate to starve the algae into submission in less than 3 weeks (no kidding). Read through our skimmer archives for perspectives on the most reliable skimmer designs/brands... and perhaps upgrade if yours is not a reliable design. If the skimmer is not the problem, here... then there is some other serious nutrient import/export issue at hand> Just the other day I was able to witness one of the adult slugs laying the spiral egg strand on the glass close to the top of the water line.  I had seen this type of egg case once before in the aquarium (again close to the top) but wasn't sure what had laid it.  I have read all the information I can find on this species and it sounds as though the eggs hatch out and have a rudimentary shell in their larval stage which they loose before adulthood.  Is this so for this particular species?  Is it possible that the eggs I have seen have developed into small adults despite all the hazards that such would encounter in a reef aquarium?   <this species of Nudibranch commonly reproduces in captivity indeed... do enjoy :)> I was always under the impression that my pump (if not the corals) would damage any plankton floating about.   <not so... impeller shear is grossly overstated/-rated> As an added note I am lucky to have access to a microscope at my workplace and was able to take a small portion of the egg spiral and view this.  I saw what looked like two dark eye spots(?) in each individual which was curled up and had a multiple of segmented sections spiraling outward to the tail section.  I wish I had a way to send a picture of what I saw in the microscope.  I can send in pictures of the egg strand (as long as it hasn't hatched yet) and the babies if anyone is interested.  The egg strand thus far is 12 days old. Laurie <fantastic my friend... please do document it and share if you can. Best regards! Anthony>

Where to buy Berghia Nudibranchs 11/19/04 Where can I purchase some Berghia Nudibranchs. I would like to breed them in my 35 gal refugium to eat the Aiptasia in my 100 gal reef tank. Georgie <do try: inlandaquatics.com or coralsandbar.com if these do not pan out, write back to me and I will find other sources for you. Kindly, Anthony> Brittle star eating Nudibranchs Mr. Blundell, << Please no Mr.  Just Blundell, or Adam or hey you >> While I am thankful for your advice & experience, I have to inform you that I have caught my culprit in the act of attempted lettucide-- it was my spiny brittle star. << Seriously?  Really? >> I was watching my remaining Nudibranch on one of the live rocks, & noticed that he was inching his way closer toward the brittle star. I allowed this for a few minutes to see what would unfold. The brittle star's arms were feeling around the Nudibranchs general vicinity, & at 1st I didn't think anything would happen because when he touched the Nudibranch it would seemingly recoil away. Despite this, however, his arms kept returning & touching the Nudibranch. << Not too surprising, but if ends up eating him I'll be surprised.  I'm reading your email with suspense. >> I was then distracted by the phone, & left the tank for only a minute, but then I returned, the brittle was all over the Nudibranch. He had pulled it down from where it was munching algae, & had completed wrapped his arms all around it. << Well that indeed sounds like he is eating them. >> I was able to remove the brittle from the Nudibranch, & although it had secreted a large amount of mucous, seemed more or less alright. I temporarily relocated him to my refugium, where he did fine for the night & following day. << That is surprising, after being munched on. >> The following day, I traded in my brittle for a new Nudibranch. Even my LFS was surprised, but not too much so. My thinking is that brittles are scavengers, & scavengers are typically opportunists in nature & cannot pass up an easily caught meal. << True, but Nudibranch aren't the most tasty food for them. >> I'm also thinking that Crispata, not being true Nudibranchs, may not have the same toxicity as true Nudibranchs. << Could be so. >> They seem to have more of a camouflage coloration than the bright, "leave me alone, I'm toxic!" warning colors as well. << True.  Want to sound smart.  We call those "aposomatic" colors.  Use that in a sentence with your friends and you'll sound really smart.... or really nerdy. >> Thank you anyway for your response, & I hope that you can benefit from my experience as I most certainly have from WWM Crew's as well. << Indeed, I know what to answer next time I receive this same question.  Thanks for your input. >> Take Care, Pete <<  Blundell  >> > My 1st suspect is the brittle star-- I'm thinking > that > with his long searching arms it may have come across > it & probably could have caught it pretty easily. I > don't think this guy is actively predacious, but > could > be opportunistic? << Doubtful. I wouldn't think of > him as the problem. >> Nudibranch assistance Thanks for great website. <Thank you Chris for the compliment, MacL here with you tonight> I found few opisthobranchs on my reef they were around my expensive blue zoos and pink zoos I removed 3 of them yesterday night but is there any better way than wait for them to show up and catch them? <Youch that's a big problem. Honestly I have heard there are traps but I've never seen any that truly work other than just pulling them off.  Also I have friends who isolate their zoos to try to catch them.  Usually they show up more at night so with a flashlight and/or with a red-light?> One of them were on my orange zoos and it's some tassels color was orange I am sure it is eating my zoos (Some reason starting 3 weeks ago all of my zoos are not doing good (all other corals are ok) I could not figure out why but now I know...) <They can be terrible problems. let me also recommend you look on www.seaslugforum.com> Since my camera is not so good it looks like this http://www.wetwebmedia.com/nudifaqs.htm Nudibranch id 6/11/03 Thanks Chris Kim Starting aquarium for Nudibranchs or flatworms 9/24/04 I have a fish only tanks for a number of years. I am now interested in starting a species specific tank for Nudibranchs or flatworms. any web sites, books, articles, recommendations would be helpful. thanks mark <hmmm... both are rather challenging. The Opisthobranchs for their oft-obligate diet on inconvenient (to us) prey... and flatworms for much of the same (largely predatory too). There are some great Nudibranchs that can be cultured though... temperate and tropical... carnivorous and herbivorous. Check out some the fine ID books at Behrens seachallengers.com... and be sure to visit the seaslugforum.com on the Web. I have an article on culturing Berghia Nudibranchs in the January issue of reefkeeping.com if it interests you. Best regards, Anthony> Nudibranch ID? 8/2/04 Here is a better pic of the little pests. Is there any other info you can give? Any help is appreciated, thanks <again... Ids from pictures are unreliable if even possible. I see that you used/borrowed a pic from John Susbilla.  I know this chap... he's a Bay Area club member (SeaBAY perhaps). Do e-mail John for an ID of this/his snails.  He's a great guy. Anthony>  

Nudibranchs floating I have three locally collected Nudibranchs that are black with red rims sort of frilly, healthy seems in every way except that they have all recently decided to climb up the glass and then upside down on the water surface! They are not apparently ill they actually seem to be trying to climb there as they would anywhere else. If pushed a little they sink and grab onto a surface and continue to get around until they reach the glass then back up they go. Any ideas why this may be? << How is your water motion and lighting?  This is just a guess but maybe low oxygen conditions have them moving towards the surface.  Or, maybe low lighting has them moving up towards the lights. >> One started this two days ago now they are all doing it. Have been doing pH adjusting as I let it get way too low (7.5) and also adjusted spec grav as it was too high (1.029). << It would be a good idea to get those things adjusted before adding anything else. >> One has been in there for a month, the other two only a week or so. Have read they don't do too well in captivity any suggestions or new ways to avoid eventual death by starvation? << Where is "locally collected" and have you seen pictures of them in a book?  Fenner/Calfo's Invertebrate book is worth its weight in gold for these types of things.  I also like Sprung's invert book, but I may be able to suggest something else if I knew where you got it from. As for general feeding requirements, I would say healthy live rock with sponge and algae is a good starting point. >> PS this site is very helpful informative and great coverage of topics! << Good Luck. >> <<  Adam Blundell  >>

Missing Nudibranch (12/23/2003) I recently added a Nudibranch, don't know the name - dark blue with yellow strips, which disappeared over night.  The next week I added two lettuce Nudibranchs, one had bites out of him the next day and was almost completely gone the next day, the other disappeared the following day. <Nudibranchs should definitely be put in a quarantine tank for a month before going in the display tank.> At the same time I added a yellow cucumber.  It has been over two weeks without a sighting of it.  I am fighting an algae problem right now so it is very easy to see if the substrate is disturbed by anything, I have see no sign of the cucumber since the second day.  From reading anything I can find about these types of animals I would expect to find a dead fish if they were eaten by a fish, I have not. <Lettuce Nudis are not toxic. In general, the brighter the colors, the more toxic the animal. The cucumber (Colochirus robustus) may just have found a good spot where you can't see it. Mine has not moved for more than a month. This particular species is not likely to poison your tank if it dies, but it pays to be careful with a system that includes any sea cucumber.>  I have a 75 gallon with 125 lbs live rock, just removed the bioballs from my wet/dry and replaced it with more live rock.  I have 1 coral beauty, 1 purple pseudo, 2 false percula clowns, 2 yellow tail blue damsels, 4 blue/green Chromis, 2 yellow damsels, 2 brittle stars, 2 Condy anemones, 1 coral banded shrimp, 2 emerald crabs, 1 sally lightfoot and 1 tiger cowry.  I also have bubble corals, pulsing xenia and a hammer, assorted snails and hermits.  What could eat these Nudibranchs and live? <I'd suspect the Coral Beauty.>  I find them very interesting and would like to keep them successfully. <First off Alan, I strongly recommend against buying any Nudibranch other than the lettuce Nudibranch or Berghia. 99% of all others die because they are virtually impossible to feed in an aquarium. Not only that, many are toxic and can kill your fish when they die. Berghias are often purchased to eat Aiptasia and then starve once they've eaten it all. Lettuce Nudibranchs eat macro algae and will often survive. I do suspect that the coral beauty is a problem here--likely to eventually eat the lettuce Nudibranch. I can tell you like inverts (as do I), so I recommend that you buy and read "Reef Invertebrates" by Bob & Anthony. There is so much useful information in there about all kinds of interesting critters. Hope this helps, Steve Allen.> Thanks,  Alan

Unknown Nudibranch (possibly, anyhow) Okay, I've looked and looked online, and I can't ID my new little friend I found in my reef (at least I hope he's a friend, or at least not an enemy). Two days ago, out of the blue, this little black slug with a red-ring-looking thing showed up. Must have been on the LR, but the tank is 10 weeks old, so he must have been hiding somewhere. Anyhoo, I was wondering if anyone knew what this is exactly. It appears to be some sort of Nudibranch. The attached picture is, so far, the best one I can get. It /does/ have that little ball thing on his back like most Nudis do. Any ideas? Thanks!!!  ~Eric aka Dakota on the forums. <Does look like a Nudibranch to me as well... Has rhinophores, body shape as such, not as a flatworm for instance. I would say it's not likely a problem as it "spontaneously arose" from your system... that is, it likely "has food", and won't toxify your system if it dies. Nice pic. Bob Fenner>

A Bornella from the Bahamas Dear Bob, I saw your post on Bill Rudman's forum.  Can you tell me where you found the Bornella in the Bahamas.  I would love to photograph it. Thank you, Anne DuPont <If memory serves... on the north side of Providence. You're welcome to scans of my images of the species if you can't find it. Bob Fenner>

Lettuce Nudi (8-9-03) Hey guys,<Howdy, Cody here today.> I was wondering, I'm getting a lettuce Nudibranch.  I have 2 tangs coral hermits snails coral banded shrimp.  I was wondering, I have this algae that not even my tangs will touch, it's too thick; will a Nudibranch be ok with these animals?  I have a 75 gallon reef with a protein skimmer and a duel bio wheel and a bunch of power heads <He should be fine, just make sure all powerheads and intakes are covered as they have a tendency to get sucked into them.  Cody>Thanks JM

-It doesn't pay to sample a Nudi!- I feel that I know the answer to this but, we just purchased a lettuce Nudibranch and noticed that he had been nipped.  The second day there was a little piece of him on the substrate but he was still moving along just fine.  By the evening our Sailfin tang was dead and by the next morning our very large yellow tang was also dead. <The two most interested in an algae meal...>  My assumption is that these are the two fish that nipped at the Nudibranch. <Likely, the thing does look like a tasty clump of algae.> I have removed our new addition.  Is there anything I need to do other than a water change to help protect the other fish? <I would add new/replace activated carbon in the tank and do a small water change for good measure.>  As I mentioned, the Nudibranch was still alive. Thanks for your help. <Good luck! -Kevin> KatMcD

Hypselodoris Hi! I recently purchased a Hypselodoris bullockii -(pink/purple slug thingy) the salesman had assured me it ate algae and is low maintenance. after I got home I looked it up on the internet (which I should of done before I bought it)... and found little information... but apparently they are impossible to keep alive... since Mr. pink is already in my aquarium... I don't want to give up on him so soon... do you have any information on these guys? I read they have a picky diet of Dysidea and Aplyilla sponges... I am also concerned about if he tragically does die, would he infect my take with toxins and what-nots. any information would be appreciated. Thanks! Angie <You learned a valuable lesson today, let the buyer beware. You are correct, they eat sponges. Nothing you can really do at this point. You are also correct, there is a potential for release of toxins into your tank water upon its death. I would try to return him and get your money back. -Steven Pro>

Re: Hypselodoris bullocki Thanks for responding so quickly! we tried to return the Hypselodoris bullocki... although they did not give us our money back, they did take him back. <Did they at least give you a credit or are they going to sell it again and double their money?> now unfortunately I have other questions... I have a 30 GAL tank 1-Protein skimmer (left on 24-7) 50 LBS live rock 40 LBS live sand 1-rotating power head <How is this working for you? I have heard mixed reviews and was just curious.> 2 snails 3 peppermint shrimp 2 clowns (percula) temp of tank is: 80F (too high??) <Do not let it get much higher than that, but 80 is ok in particular if you wish to maximize growth rates.> my tank is 2 months old and the life stock has only been put in during the last 10 days. 2 days ago I had purchased the "tank raised" clowns and did as the salesman said (adding a cup of our tank water to the bag he was in every 15 minutes for an hour before we let him into our tank... our tank salinity is at 1.021 of the 2 clowns purchased... one was kept at 1.017 (they explained they keep their "fish only tanks at this level so the fish can breathe easier and the other was at 1.023 (he was in a reef tank) so as you can see. both fish would have a little adjusting to do for our tank. the clowns however have been spending a lot of time near the top. I haven't even seen them go halfway down into the tank yet. and it seems as if they are somehow too light for my tank. as they need to kind of struggle to keep in the water. I thought that maybe my salinity was too high. so I bought a new instrument and it showed that my water is at 1.021 this morning when I got up I saw that 1 of the clowns was near death. almost floating sideways on the top of the water. after I turned on the tank light and a few hours later. he seemed fine. though they both still hanging in the upper tank. is there something wrong? all my levels tested fine. I can only think that they are either still adjusting or I'm missing something. <IME, tank raised clownfish always hang out near the top. They do not know to hide from predators and always wait at the top for you to feed them. They do not even hide when you put your arms in there to clean the tank or move something, completely oblivious. The floating on his side thing and struggling concerns me. Possible swim bladder problem. Do they seem like they have to fight hard to go down and float up without any swimming motion?> also... in the past 2 days some little green hairs have been growing on the inside of my tank walls... is this a good or bad sign? <Normal, part of algal succession.> should I scrape and vacuum off? <As part of routine maintenance when it gets too bad.> the snails seems to like them... and some green coloration algae???)to some parts of the sand - is this a good or bad thing? <Better to not be on the sand.> and today while I was watching my clowns... I noticed little tiny... almost microscopic type creatures swimming to the top of my tank.... before they reached their deaths -as the clowns ate them!  are these things good guys? <Yes, probably Amphipods. Tiny shrimp like creatures, arched backs, and two antenna.> and at last... final question today... I was wondering if a 10% water change every week is too much for my 30 gallon tank... <Nope, sounds great.> any and all input is appreciated. thank you thank you thank you, Angie <You are welcome. -Steven Pro>

-Sources for Berghia Nudibranchs- Does anyone know where these might be available?  I am very much in need of a few and nobody seems to have them (Inland, Customaquatic, seaslugs.com, nobody!). <Oooh, I was just going to suggest Inland Aquatics. You may want to start up a thread on ReefCentral or Reefs.org, there are many hobbyists growing these guys.> If anyone has ideas or knows breeders somewhere, I'd be much obliged.  Sailfin tang destroyed a CBS in 2 days, peppermint shrimp are doing nothing, and the syringe method will have me going nutso every week or two if it comes to that. <It never hurts to syringe a few here and there!> Thanks, Joel <I wish you luck on your search! -Kevin>

Berghia Nudibranchs Hi Bob, <Rob> Do you know of any good sources that currently have Berghia Nudibranchs in stock?  I was breeding them, but I failed to fill my tank with water prior to vacation (my attention was focused on my new show tanks) my Rio burned out and my Berghia population crashed with my Aiptasia tank. <Mmm, don't "get out and about" (as often as I'd like) in the circles that might familiarize me with who's culturing these... I encourage you to post your request on the various hobbyist BB's like Reefs.org, http://wetwebfotos.com/talk/, ReefCentral...> I have a huge demand for them (as you can imagine). <Oh yes. You might try breeding, raising them yourself... can be quite profitable, and takes little space, time.> Thank you for your time. Best regards, Rob Ferguson <Be chatting, Bob Fenner>

Seeking Berghia Nudibranchs 8/2/03 I've checked all the sources on Berghia on the site and haven't had any luck finding any.  Inland may have some next week. <Inland aquatics is my first choice for seeking/referring folks for Berghia> Aquatic wildlife (formerly captivebredcorals ?) is in the process of moving  and disconnected their phones. I was in contact with Les (guy that runs the Berghia, etc.) trying to wholesale 60 Berghia from him but they were disconnected prior to him getting back to me. Do you have their new contact info?  their new web address is here: http://captivebredcorals.shopbt.com/WS4D_Cookie=8.2.03_14,06,00_219654/index.ws4d > Thank you, Rob Ferguson <you might also try networking the big message boards that have club forums. I have been to many aquarium clubs that have small-scale production of these Opistos among club members. Best regards, Anthony>

Snail?  Nudibranch? >Hi, WWM Guys and Girl, I think that it is a Nudibranch.  Someone at the LFS suggested possibly a limpet, but I don't think so. Don't those all have shells? >>Girl Marina again.  ;)  To the best of my knowledge this is correct.   >I'm going to try to send the pics again in a zip file, perhaps they'll come through that way.   >>Do check the extension of the file type, this may have been the initial problem, though I'm hardly an expert.   >I'm inclined to think that it is not predatory by the lack of cerata on it's back, is this a "fairly" safe assumption??   >>This I cannot confirm or deny.   >I appreciate all the hard work you guys do saving our critters from our lack of experience. >>Heh, we try.  Do hope we've been of help to you and everyone else who reads this stuff.  Marina

Nudibranch id 6/11/03 hey guys, thanks as always.   <our pleasure> I noticed that my star polyps have been shut for almost 2 days straight. I inspected last night and found a couple Nudibranchs on the mat.  I have not seen them anywhere else in the tank.  however, I don't notice much damage being done to the mat itself.  I caught one with a turkey baster. sorry for the fuzzy photo, but its the best I could do.  is this predatory?  to the polyps retracted? <yes... clearly predatory as indicated by the presence of cerata on the back (the "tassels"). They are for storing, in part, the digested stinging cells of Cnidarian prey like your coral. Do seek and remove, my friend (the opisthobranchs... not the coral <G>). Best regards, Anthony>

Nudibranchs vs. amphipods 6/4/03 Thanks for such a great site. I've just spent a relaxing evening hunting Nudibranchs with a wooden kabob spear. <yikes, bub! Resist that habit. There is a thread from a chap on ReefCentral who went into anaphylactic shock over squishing a small Nudibranch with his finger. Any sort of molestation I the aquarium can/is likely to instigate a noxious exudation from this categorically potent family of Mollusks- the Opisthobranchs. Even if you are safe from their poisons, who knows what is being released and harming the other tank inhabitants?> They crawl/stick right on. Better fright value than renting "Alien" at the video store. The small soft coral they were vandalizing (and came with, and I've just learned the hard way about more adequate quarantine) looks happier for being pest-free. Oddly enough, it fell off the rock to which it was attached (lil scalawags ate it from the base!)  and now has bloomed nicely on the aquarium floor. I think I nabbed them all, but predictably enough, a pack of Nudibranch eggs scattered behind the rocks as I was eliminating their abusive parents. Is there any hope other tank scavengers may have at them? <many wrasse species indeed. Some angels> I've got a nice throng of amphipods, coral-friendly snails and crabs, various polychaetes, not-yet-plague level Aiptasia, a couple of damsels. Are they any threat to sea slug invasion? <no worries... the slugs are generally prey-specific. You may want to remove that coral for a month to try to interrupt any direct development of more slugs> Are any tank dwellers a natural threat to them?  Thanks very much. <not as many as we would hope... getting back to their potent toxicity. Perhaps just removal of the coral and spying for the next month for stragglers. Best regards, Anthony>

Is this a flat worm, snail slug, Nudibranch or what?? Dear crew, I found this snail type invert in the tank after buying live rock from the LFS. I've looked thru the website but haven't found anything looking like this. It is a rose pink color about an inch long, has two rows of branch like "tentacles" along its back, with a crown for its head. I'm leaning toward a Nudibranch what's your opinion? Thanks, Cindy <Looks like a Nudibranch to me. Might live, might not... likely not a problem either way. Bob Fenner>

C. varians Algae Nudibranch Hey People...how goes it?  >>Greetings, Dennis, Marina person here this morning, and it goes quite well, thanks for asking. >I am writing to ask your opinion regarding the Nudibranch C. varians as a way to control the flat worms that are spreading like wild fire in my tank. I have a 150 reef that is littered with the little red devils. Albeit harmless they are an eyesore. Problem is that my LFS never has the Nudibranch and I am forced to purchase them via internet and will be sent to me without a stay alive guarantee. I guess these die easily in transit; moreover, I hear these things die easily period and have a natural short life span. How many do you think I need to eat say 10,000 worms? >>You've presented me with a question I haven't got ready answers for, as I'm unfamiliar. I'll do a search, but off hand I think that it would first be prudent to start with one only, see what happens. Try this article on the flatworms themselves, as there is indeed a real dearth of information on the Nudi you're considering.   http://www.wetwebmedia.com/pestflatwrmanthony.htm  >>Also, try a search (I'm assuming you've already searched our database for information on the flatworms and the C. varians) on http://www.reefs.org/library -- don't forget to search Advanced Aquarist itself, too. Best of luck to you, Marina.

Lettuce Nudibranch (Elysia) Dear WWM: I was looking over my tank today, when creeping around were 5 baby Nudibranchs. They were about 1/8 inch and were bluish gray. About a three weeks ago I had a lettuce Nudibranch, but it died. These animals lay eggs so it might have been from her. I only had one but they are hermaphrodites. <self fertilization is uncommon but can occur> One was eaten my Arrow Crab. Should I remove them? <they are no harm of course if they are truly lettuce Nudibranchs> My tank is fallow now because of an ich problem so they might survive. <do avoid (or at least reduce incidence) of Ich/disease with strict quarantine of all new stock (algae, plants, fishes, corals, etc) and stable temps in display> The tank is a 29 Gallon FOWLR with mushroom corals. Will they harm the mushrooms. <again... not if they are Elysia> Thanks Bob Najdek <Best regards>

Lynx Nudibranch Hello all, I went snorkeling yesterday and collected a lynx Nudibranch about .5" long.  Cute little fella in a gross slimy kind of way.  My question is:  Will this little predator eat my reef dwellers or fit right in to the family.  Right now I have a couple of anemones, file clam, feather dusters, green polyps, misc. small corals, two xenias, and a pair of CBS. Thanks again for the info, Aquah0lic <Umm, seaslugforum.com, Google, Debelius... no one has a listing for this common name. Do you have a species identification? Bob Fenner>

Re: lynx Nudibranch ok, so now that we are on the same page (sort of) lol, back to the original question: My question is:  Will this little predator eat my reef dwellers or fit right in to the family.  Right now I have a couple of anemones, file clam, feather dusters, green polyps, misc. small corals, two xenias, and a pair of CBS. Thanks again for the info, Aquah0lic <No idea. The info. I can find on this species is principally identification in orientation, e.g.: http://www.seaslugforum.net/phidlync.htm I suspect it is a hydroid feeder however, so I doubt it will prove deleterious or survive in your system. Bob Fenner>

Lucky Nudibranch find - 3/31/03 G'day Paul, <G'day mate> Thanks for getting back to me. <No worries> I have managed to track down a picture of my friend the slug. Without a digital camera I was trying to figure out how to get a picture to you and then, lo and behold, I found a web site full of pictures of sea slugs (I even found a recipe for boiled sea slug!- I guess our different tastes and priorities are what makes people interesting) <Especially those of us who know that the Outback steakhouse is not true Australian food> a picture of the slug in question can be found here: http://www.mars.dti.ne.jp/~furuse/watching/SLUG/n3.html its name is: Stylocheilus longicaudus (Quoy & Gaimard 1824) with the cool Japanese name of: kurosuji-amehurashi. You asked if I was sure if he was grazing on the algae growing on the sides of the tank. He sure is, like a horse. When he is on the front glass I can see through to his underside and his mouth is going non-stop while he mows down the algae. You can even see the (algae free) tracks where he has been. <Well, congrats on a very cool find. Now, before I put this guy in my tank (if he were mine) I would just go around to various sites on Nudibranchs, like the one above and http://www.seaslugforum.net/, as well as a great many other sites to be found through your favorite search engine. In any event, I would gather as much information as I can before letting him loose in the tank. Also, send an email to David Behrens of SeaChallengers.com. He does extensive research in the area of Nudibranchs and is a valuable source of information. He may be able to point you in a direction. Let him know Paul Mansur sent you and or Bob Fenner for that matter. He doesn't live far from me and occasionally I get to see some of his presentations. Fascinating stuff. More and more information coming out about the various Nudibranchs all of the time.> Thanks again for spending your time on my question. <My pleasure. Please let me know what you find out and also how your tank does with him in there. You may be on to a new Nudibranch that could be useful to the reef aquaria trade! Paul.> Jeremy.

Reef Safe Nudibranch - 3/28/03 I am very sorry I tried to look this up but either I am looking in the wrong places or I am blind. <No problem> I just want to know if they are reef safe. <Elysia (sometimes referred as Tridachia) crispata are known to be reef safe. Check on the forums at the many reef sites and more importantly check out http://www.seaslugforum.net and http://www.wetwebmedia.com/grnalgcont2.htm Please take the time to learn about the environmental conditions and the specific needs of this useful but delicate animal> My LFS has a real nice looking one and I want it but don't want to loose coral. Any help is appreciated. <No worries. Paul> Shane

Re: Aiptasia pests (Nudi predators) and WWM Search help Hey Gang, how ya doin'?      Here's a link for the Berghia Nudi's that eat them unwanted Aiptasia Anemones. htm://www.seaslugs.com/. As I hear they are hard to come by, (not the Aiptasia !) , I thought I'd throw this link your way. Thanks for all the help the WWM crew has been to me in the past.  Scott in Denver PS. If folks flooding y'all with questions would simply type, in the search engine, the key word they are asking about, then hit the "cached" under the FAQs the search pulled up, they could get to the answers they're looking for without asking the question thru a emailed question, (if that made any sense!), maybe lighten the load on the crew!. <Thanks much for both these inputs. Bob Fenner>

Nudibranch In Danger? Hello, <Hey there! Scott F. here tonight> First off, let me tell you how much I enjoy your web site. I have been into saltwater tanks for a few years now and I have received lots of great information from your site. Thank you. <Glad to hear that!> Now, here is my problem: I have a 68 gallon reef tank with a wet dry filtration system. Recently I noticed that one of my lettuce leaf Nudibranch was in my wet dry. He seems to be doing fine down there but I want to put him back in my tank. However I am worried about moving him. I have heard that some Nudibranchs are toxic and I wanted to know if this particular species was one of the toxic ones and what the safest way (if any) was to put him back into the tank. <Good question/concern. I have not heard that this one is toxic, but I would operate under the conservative assumption that all of Nudibranchs can be toxic. I would simply carefully remove the animal and deposit it back into your aquarium. No real technique here-just try not to damage the animal.> If you have any suggestions I would appreciate them. John <No great expertise required-just be careful! Good luck! Regards, Scott

Lettuce Nudibranch in Refugium 2/16/03 Dear Crew, Looking for interesting livestock for my refugium whose main purpose is to grow raise "pods", peppermint shrimp,  <FWIW... I would leave the shrimp (all shrimp/crabs) out. They eat more than they contribute (larvae). I feel that biodiversity will be slightly better without them> and red Gracilaria algae <good choice... give high light and high water flow for best results> I came across the Lettuce Nudibranch advertised as a good micro algae eater. ($6.50). <agreed: Elysia crispata = Tridachia crispata), the Lettuce Sea slug: hails from the Tropical West Atlantic. This highly variable species is feeds on various species of macroalgae. They grow 2-4 " (5-10cm) and their colors vary considerably including a remarkable teal-blue variety. The frilly convolutions of the body become exaggerated with light exposure. This sea slug is photosynthetic, using the chloroplasts of ingested algae for photosynthesis. [caption from new image with species in new book]> WWM has wonderful info on Nudis but not this species. Most covered are carnivores.. Is this one vegetarian and would it be good and interesting addition to the large refugium which is rich in green micro algae? <Elysia are very good grazers... but more on nuisance algae like Bryopsis. I realize that you are not trying to encourage this sort of algae and I hope that your success growing Gracilaria limits nutrients and prevents any such algae from growing. In turn... a lettuce sea slug may starve. I would wait on buying this little bugger> (2 years in the hobby and bought nothing which is not WWM recommended Howard in Wisconsin <best regards, my fried. Anthony>

Creature ID - 2/14/03 Mr. Fenner, <Anthony Calfo in your service> When my lights came on I found this orange and green slug-like creature with about 12 stringy tentacles.  It looks like a hydra but I assumed they were microscopic.  It crawled into the rock except for it's tentacles, which it left out, probing the rock.  I believe it exudes some sort of white powder as you can see on the rock in the pic I've included.  I looked through your articles and on the web and haven't really found much about this.  My main question is if this is good or bad to have wondering around.  I don't have a macro lens, so that is the best I can do for a visual. Thanks for your time Donovon Bodine <The effort to take the image is truly appreciated. Alas... it came through very blurry. Still... it has a reminiscent form on a Dentronotid sea slug. Without any more info (number of tentacles to that are "head-oriented/AKA cephalic, are there sparse tassels on the back, in pairs?, etc)... I'm wondering if you don't have something like: Bornella calcarata  Please use that name in our search engine for WWM to find a picture on the site to compare to in gross form. At least to tell us if it is even a true sea slug. If it is a Dentronotid species specifically... then it eats coral or like cnidarians (perhaps even jellyfish... yikes!). That would be bad. Kindly, Anthony>

Predatory Nudibranch - 2/11/03 Hi guys, just a quick question for you. Am I right in assuming that the white creature shown in the photo above the cauliflower coral a Nudibranch? <Yes... Tritonia or Tritoniopsis for example> if so is it a species the predates on corals <Yes... it eats soft coral like the one in the picture (soft finger leathers, encrusting colts, Cladiella, etc)... they also breed in aquaria and seem to have direct development (dangerous for your corals). Remove ASAP> as I have two in my reef system that came in with the  cauliflower corals. thanks guys Paul <A common hitchhiker on Indonesian imports... indeed, please do remove ASAP. Anthony>

Predatory Nudibranch - 2/11/03 hi Anthony <Howdy> thanks for confirming my hunch about the Nudibranch . <our pleasure> I took both of them out when I got home from work and read your e-mail unfortunately I lost a chunk of cauliflower but without your help it could have been a hell of a lot worse <no worries... all will recover easily in months> I try and keep what hitchhikers I get but these just gave me a bad feeling <agreed... and please be sure to try to catch these by holding all coral in a proper QT for several weeks before entry. This predator was easy controlled in the display... but next time you could suffer something wholly infectious. QT everything wet! that your bring home (plants, algae, coral, fish, etc)> thanks once again Paul <best regards, Anthony>

Coral Slugs eating away I posted a message at 'About Saltwater Aquarium' and was referred to this site ("Try sending the pics over to WetWebMedia.Com and ask Bob Fenner and the boys they might be able to help").   <Anthony Calfo in your service> Anyhow, here's my original post, I hope you guys can help.  Thanks in advance! <our great pleasure> "I purchased a Sinularia coral about two weeks ago.  It's looked fine for the first few days but then started closing up.  I changed it's position in the tank a few times but noticed yesterday that it was getting smaller and portions appeared to be deteriorating. Well, upon closer inspection I saw something eating away at the coral which looks like some sort of slug (I've seen them once before eating my Colt coral).   <Correct... the same "Tassled" (cerata) Nudibranch (Dendronotacea)> I pulled out the rock to remove the slug and found a total of SIX, just eating away (coral is about 1/3 to 1/2 of it's original size). Anyhow, I was wondering if anyone here can identify these slugs (or whatever else they might be).   <how specifically? Not at all possible by photograph to species... perhaps not even to genus. Suborder given above> Here are the pictures: One last favor / question: I attached a picture of the coral (when it was healthy).  When I purchased the coral, the LFS said it was a Sinularia BUT NOT a Finger Leather Coral.  I would like to narrow down the identification a bit further.  It looks like a Blushing Finger Leather (Cladiella) but I just don't know.  Any help would be great." <Hmmm... for the record. The taxonomy has all changed for some of the Alcyoniids. The tall branching colt corals we knew as Cladiella were moved to "Alcyonium" then (now) to Klyxum. Your coral as depicted appears to be a true Sinularia but may in fact be a legitimate Cladiella> Thanks, Onel <best regards, Anthony>

Nudibranch Where can I find a Berghia verrucornis? I have looked every where from Knoxville, TN to Atlanta, GA. Any ideas?       <I know at times Inland Aquatics http://www.inlandaquatics.com/ has some for sale. Otherwise, when I typed "Berghia" into Yahoo, I got 284 hits. I am sure one of those is for sale. -Steven Pro>

Nudibranch ID Hi guys, I was wondering if you could identify this slug as potentially harmful.   <it is, as evidenced by the Tassled cerata dorsally that are extensions of the digestive track in gross terms and contain the stinging cells of Cnidarian tissue that it has consumed (eats coral, anemones)> He rode in on what I believe to be a pipe organ coral (see attached).  I found him in the bag and figured he was herbivorous <ahhh...no> but he STAYS on the pipe organ.   <ahhh... ya> I've noticed on the polyps of the pipe organ some "branches are missing now but I've never actually seen the slug near the tips. <night time is the right time> I've actually had the slug living in a bucket of change water (water I removed from the tank) since he's under suspicion.  Any ideas?   <yep... put the creature in a jar of formalin and take it to club meetings to warn other aquarists. But seriously... a shame that this creature will not survive in captivity for you. It has a very specific diet that you cannot want or afford to meet. Please do take some better and clear pictures of this creature in a another vessel (dorsally in a bright white cup perhaps). And do share the photos... we'd love to have them! Highest resolution possible for our website and possible book/magazine print with your permission.> Thanks in advance. Arthur
<ciao, bud... Anthony>

Can you help me identify with this photo? I have others. Shot in thirty feet of water in the Bahamas. Bob Fenner By Bob Fenner
Dear Bob, This is indeed a species of Bornella. Fortunately, only one has been described from the Caribbean region so I can pretty confidently identify it as Bornella calcarata. Have a look at the other photos and messages on this page to see the variation in colour of this species. It seems the broad white band down the dorsal midline is present in some form. The fingerlike 'oral veil' on either side of the mouth is very characteristic of the genus. Best wishes,
Bill Rudman

Your photo on the Forum (SeaSlug... it's fabulous) Hi Bob, I saw your photograph of Bornella calcarata on the forum this morning. Where did you take the photograph? <Nikon N90, 105 mm, Velvia (Fuji 50 ISO) film> How deep was it? <Appx. 45 ft> Was it a day or night dive? <Day> I spend a lot of time in the Bahamas and would love to photograph this Nudibranch. Thank you. Anne DuPont <Thank you for the note, Bob Fenner, WetWebMedia.com, http://www.WetWebMedia.com/nudibran.htm>
Re: Your photo on the Forum Thanks Bob, Where (what island) was it photographed? Thanks, Anne <Had to get out my originals. In Tuna Alley, twixt N. and S. Bimini... during a Oct. trip out on BlackBeard Cruises out of Miami... and more like thirty feet (according to note on slide) of depth. Bob Fenner>

Nudibranch Identification Question Three Nudibranch showed up in my tank via a piece of coral and I wondered if you might know their name/eating habits? They are bright orange all over (no other colors present). They are covered with tentacle-like polyps from tip to tip. None are longer than 3 inches. There is not really anything else particularly distinguishing about them, other than the above features. <I am going to guess Nudibranchia eatyourcorali :) Sorry, but I really have no idea. Do please see here http://www.wetwebmedia.com/nudibran.htm http://www.wetwebmedia.com/nudispt2.htm http://www.wetwebmedia.com/nudispt3.htm http://www.seaslugforum.net/ and follow on through the other linked files for additional pictures. My best guess is that these are possibly predatory for that particular coral. Nudibranchs in general of very specific in what they eat. It stands to reason they hitchhiked into your tank on the back of their food source.> Thanks in advance, George <You are welcome. -Steven Pro>

Re: Nudibranch Identification Question Steven, Thanks for your quick reply and information sources. Through your help (the links) I identified the little buggers! They are Family Tergipedidae, Phestilla melanobrachia. <They did not happen to hitchhike in with a Sun Coral/Orange Cup Coral/Tubastrea?> Thanks, I would not have identified them without your help. George <You are welcome. -Steven Pro>

Re: Nudibranch Identification Question They did hitchhike in with the Orange Sun Coral. I am starting up a new 7 gallon saltwater set-up and the fish store gave me some "bits" from their tanks to help me get started. One of the larger bits was an Orange Sun Coral that was ~75% dead, only two polyps were left. I was happy to have the free coral, so I did not complain. What surprised me is that when last night the two "polyps" got up and cruised around the live rock. <They were probably looking for more Tubastrea.> After a closer inspection, it looks like I have 3 Nudibranchs (1 large, 2 small) and good sized bunch of eggs on the coral that they came in on. I would really like to keep these guys alive, but I have to do the cost benefit analysis of buying Sun coral to keep them feed. this could get expensive. <Yes, but it would be interesting though. I know Tropicorium was propagating Tubastrea and if my memory is correct, a gentleman by the name of Yaiullo had them spawn in captivity. I know he wrote an article about it. I would search for Tubastrea and Yaiullo and determine if you can/desire to set up a second tank for raising food. -Steven Pro>

Re: Nudibranch Identification Question Thanks. That's a great idea. People are going to think that I am nuts, raising coral to feed Nudibranch! <Tell them you are on the cutting edge. -Steven Pro>

Re: Nudibranch Identification Question I searched for Yaiullo, and he did publish an article on spawning Tubastrea in a 1994 edition of Aquarium Frontiers. The AF archive does not go back that far. <I think AF was still an actual paper magazine at that point. I looked around for an online version myself but no luck.> I tried to find an e-mail address for Joe Yaiullo, to no avail. Do you by chance know his e-mail, where he might be working, or organizations he might be associated with? <I know he is working in New York at a Public Aquarium. Perhaps someone that reads the dailies on www.WetWebMedia.com will read this and find/know of a link to his article. -Steven Pro>

Weird little critter.... Hey guys. I am just starting a low light 55 gallon reef (well, 3 months so far). The tank was Fish-Only before for perhaps 6 months. 15" in-tank counter current protein skimmer, 90 watts of N.O. lights, Coral-life and Ocean-life bulbs. Got maybe 20 lbs of cured Fiji rock so far, and some coral skeletons. Crushed coral substrate. Livestock; a few Sabella feather dusters, 6 Astrea, Mushroom, Button and Colt corals. Anyway, I bought a piece of rock with what I thought was some kind of anemone, bluish-black with a white stripe in the center. I placed the organism right under the light, and to my surprise, by the next morning it had crawled away. Haven't seen it for like 2 weeks until today when I was moving rocks around. Got a real good look at it too. It has a very dark blue center perhaps an inch long and a frilly translucent mantle, it would be a great display critter if it came out in daylight. The white stripe is some kind of bone or shell, which the mantle has enclosed from underneath. Two short feelers/tentacles/pseudopods extend from the front. It looks similar to a type of snail called an Opistobranch (please excuse the spelling) or something like that. <indeed... does sound like a shell less nail/Nudibranch> Is it going to be any danger to my other sessile inverts? <tough to say... more likely it will starve to death as most are so specific if their diet. There is some home that yours eats flatworms which are possible to culture in display aquariums. Do browse through some specific references on Nudis to get a species ID with hope that it is recognized in the hobby for its needs. There are many dedicated websites if you care to de a keyword search.> Well thanks for your time. Simon : ) <best regards, Anthony>

Nudibranch I want to get some Nudibranchs or other sea slugs. <Please see here, http://www.WetWebMedia.com/nudibran.htm, regarding their extremely poor track record in captivity. There are a few that are suitable, but the vast majority starve to death.> My Tank is 200+ Gallons and is fish/invertebrate (No Coral). Invertebrates: I have various hermit and other crabs (Anemone, Porcelain, Red/Blue leg hermits, etc.), Flame Scallops, Cucumbers, Condy Anemones, Starfish, snails (Cowries, Tulip and Flamingo Tongues) and several species of Urchins. Fish are a mixed bag of Damsels, Gobies, Wrasses, a Lion, etc. My question is, can I introduce sea slugs/Nudibranchs into this environment and if, so, what types would you recommend and what are possible conflicts I might encounter. I realize this is a pretty broad question and I very much appreciate your thoughts. Thanks, Don Tope <Good luck to you in your endeavor. -Steven Pro>

Nudibranch on star polyps Bob, First of all, I am grateful for the wealth of information the WWM group provides on a daily basis.  I found two Nudibranchs on my star polyps which can be seen while the lights are either on or off.  Found a picture of them on the web which labels them as a soft coral eating Nudibranch or Dendronotacean. See following link http://rshimek.com/rogue's_gallery.htm  Should I just pull of this pest off with tweezers/wash off ... please advise...I also read in Sprung's Vol. 2 of specific harmless Nudibranchs which co-exist with star polyps .. they looked quite similar in appearance. Please help Thanks again, Joe Velazquez <The link did not come through for Shimek's ID. In general though... predatory Nudis do severe damage fast. If more than a week has gone by... I'm thinking you are likely safe.  Do cut and paste or attach a picture if you need to follow up. Best regards, Anthony>

Nudibranch on star polyps Bob, thanks for the reply, pulled both Nudi's off of starpolyps last night with tweezers (they held on for dear life)... polyps have not opened since yesterday morning, hermit crab seemed to be working on polyps this morning ... hope this is the reason for no polyps.  <quite possibly... they are tripped easily> Should have taken pictures prior to ... Great to have someone to communicate with about our hobby/passion ... owe you a beer .... Joe <agreed... do look up a local aquarium society as well... perhaps the best place for fellowship and information with enthusiasts> While I have your attention ... any feeling on coral feeding with "Aqualine Plancto". Recommended Feeding daily (roughly 8 drops for 120 gallon reef. Concerned will eventually encounter diatom bloom. <as with any nutritive supplement, experiment judiciously. Maintain regular water changes and good nutrient export processes (skimming, chemical media, water changes) and you will likely be fine. There certainly are no miracle additives out there> thanks again <always welcome, Anthony Calfo>

Aiptasia Hello Robert, <Claude... Anthony Calfo here in your service while Bob is on holiday in Australia> It has been a long time since we had a talk...I hope you're well and healthy. So do I, I hope so at least. <indeed, and the same to your my friend. We will in fact be traveling to your part of the world soon. A trip to Nuremberg, Germany in May. At least... it is a lot closer than America is to Belgium <smile>> Well, I write you today to ask a question about Berghia verrucornis. You see, my retailer in fishes who is also a friend can't afford this Nudibranch. I told him I'll ask you and see what your answer will be. So, I have set the question, be so kind to read it and to answer when it past. In the mean time I send you my best and most friendly regards. Claude with a salute from Belgium. <and a kind salute from the USA to you. Please tell me if your question is how to care for Berghia or where to get them? With kind regards, Anthony Calfo> Claude Declercq, Belgium

Berghia and Belgium Hello Anthony, <Greetings, my friend!> Well, please do accept my apologizes if I didn't explain myself good. <no worries at all> Indeed it goes over how to get them in quantities for sale as retailer). I thank you for the rapidity you have yet answered me and you may say to Bob from me "he is a lucky man to have holidays now". I wish him all the best a man can wish and to you all who come to Europe in a while, a good trip and a nice stay here. <I will do so and thank you!> I see (no offense) that as a lot of Americans, you are not a great geographer, ah, ah, ah. because Belgium must be two or three hundred kilometers nearer of America than Nurnberg is. At the other side, Belgium is a little country, more little of Germany but it is good to live here. <alas... it is true that many Americans are not at all well schooled on world geography> With all friendship. Claude. <In answer to your question, my friend. I am not aware of many places that wholesale the Berghia Nudibranchs. Their production is still so low with a demand so high that most if not all are sold at retail prices. One such place is on the web at http://www.inlandaquatics.com/ you might look them up to see how their availability is. There is a very nice fellow there named Morgan Lidster who perhaps can advise you if they cannot serve you. Otherwise, I will post this request on the WWM board and perhaps some daily readers might write in with knowledge of a farmer with a large supply of these Nudibranchs for sale> By the way what do you think of the WWM in French? It begin to take scope, is it not? <very exciting indeed! With kind regards, Anthony> Claude Declercq

Night Life... Mr. Fenner, I know you are inundated with queries, but... I read on your site about an individual who was shocked at the amount of life found in her tank with the lights off. I had tried this in the past, with little success. The tank was new and there was some ambient light coming from an adjacent room. <Ahh...> This morning, I went stalking my tank with a small pen-light. WOW! The night time activities far outweigh the day. <Not surprisingly, eh? Much less likelihood of being eaten by organisms in the dark of the night> I found things (rather large) that I am quite sure that I neither knowingly put in there, nor have seen in the past. I found a 1.5 inch "hairy" crab. Will identify him later today. I did try to research another occupant, but am up against the wall. It is an oval shaped, 1.5 inch solid purple (plum), flat organism. It appears to have a head end and the edges "undulate", however, this is not the means of locomotion. It slides along like a snail. On it's back is a closed, slit-like orifice similar to the mouth of an anemone. In fact, at first I thought it was an anemone, however, after prolonged exposure to the light, it beat feet into a hole. Any ideas? I looked through all of the photos I could find in your material. I am leaning toward a flatworm of some type, but perhaps a Nudibranch. If you have any suggestions, I will follow up appropriately. <These would be/are my general guesses as well... the Nudibranch group first, then perhaps a Platyhelminth...> Any dangers? I would not assume so as it must have been in there for some time. <Not much... if the tank is large, well-filtered/aerated/circulated enough... should be fine to leave all as is. Bob Fenner> Thanks again, -ed

I Need your expertise Hello Robert! <Hello> We've written each other many times this past year. I'm the guy who had Arnold the Octopus! Anyway that's not important. I know I shouldn't impulse buy things without research ing, but I think it got the best of me yesterday. I was just going to LFS to get water and food and 35 dollars later I came home with a Tube Worm, I think its spelled a small Purple Pseudo and Sea Slug. <Okay> The???? is or concern rather is will this Sea Slug eat my Mushroom Corals and Gorgonians. When I asked this ?? at the store the employee said no, it would just sit in an area were their is the most current. <What? Can't tell from your description what this animal is, but this description: "just sit..." is ridiculous> and that is exactly what it's doing as of the last 13hrs. He's moved all but an inch. I wanted to learn more so I found a very small blurb in a Book saying that should it happen on a suitable food source, it will usually be a prized coral which they will feed upon until it is dead. (Showing a pict of a Chromodoris quadricolor) Is this true? Can I stop him before the damage is done, cause he moves so damn slow! Or should he be removed from the tank? My slug is a Hypodoris Bullock I think! Take a Look! http://logos-and-graphics.com/seaslug/HypselodorisBullocki.jpg http://logos-and-graphics.com/seaslug/HypselodorisBullocki2.jpg <Mmm, members of this genus have typically narrow feeding strategies... consuming only a few genera, species of sponges, gorgonians... My pic, input on Nudibranchs... http://www.WetWebMedia.com/nudibran.htm Bob Fenner> Hope you had a great peaceful holiday Thanks JET

Nudibranchs Dear Bob, Are there any of the above subject that do well in a closed marine system. I have heard rumors that some are strictly algae eaters. Thank you, James Gasta <There are some folks who purport/report that some Nudibranchs are much more aquarium-hardy than others. I personally have never had any that did well though. My further "Nudi" input: http://www.WetWebMedia.com/nudibran.htm and do read through the WWM site re other/better algae eaters, better schemes overall to manage algae. Bob Fenner>

Nudibranch I was wondering if you thought that a 1 inch long white with black spots, slug shaped Nudi a white bush structure on his back was bad for a reef tank? <In your ninety gallon system with lots of live rock? I'd leave it. Likely no problem if it lives or goes.> I see him on the glass every morning. <Watch him while you're sipping your AM Joe> He came on the Marshall Islands live rock that was extra fresh. Thank you as always, Todd Gabriel <Be chatting. Bob Fenner>

Re: Nudibranch Actually I have caught three of these little Nudi's last night I isolated them in a plastic bowl floating on top of the tank. Will tree of these little cuties eat my stony corals and clams? <Rare that Nudibranchs might eat stony corals or clams. Prefer other foodstuffs. Bob Fenner> Thanks for the expert advice. Todd

Tridachia diomedea - feeding Bob, FFExpress sells this Nudibranch - it is partially photosynthetic and apparently eats algae. I'm interested in obtaining one/some, if its likely to survive in a reef tank and had some questions for you: 1) Would you recommend this as a hardy Nudibranch (75 gal reef tank, 100 lbs of Fiji LR, lots of macro algae (in tank and sump-refugium). <For trying out as an algae eater? Not really... there are fishes that are superior. Please read: http://www.WetWebMedia.com/algeatrcontfaqs.htm As a species, specimen to try? Sure> 2) What specific types of algae does it eat <Mostly "soft" greens (chlorophytes), some reds (rhodophytes)> 3) Would Lysmata shrimp (fire and peppermint) eat it? <Unlikely> 4) would it harm corals (leathers, SPS, LPS, mushrooms, anemones). <Very unlikely> I searched the web, but couldn't find much info on this Nudi - in terms of suitability in a reef tank - although FFExpress had some FAQs that made it sound like a relatively hardy animal. <Have heard mixed results of using these naked gill slugs in captivity. Either positive or "just dissolved" (though not toxic), as with many Nudibranchs. Do consider using an algae-eating blenny, Ctenochaetus tang, investigating the root causes of algal problems... Bob Fenner> Thanks!

Nudibranch? Sorry to bother you again bob, but while I was contemplating my Aiptasia problem, staring at my little slice of the marine world and getting lost in the tranquility and beauty of it all... I noticed a little white critter... he was minute, perhaps a 1/4" max? pure white... I noticed some appendages on the front that looked reminiscent of the rhinophores on Nudibranchs? but none of the pictures on WWM look even remotely close. <Possibly a "naked gill gastropod" my friend... WWM is in deed a work in progress... but you and I together would never document even the known aeolids (let alone dorids) in our lifetimes (discounting Wednesday nights out to the pub, chasing skirts...)> it has approx. 3 or 4 small appendages along it's back... but total lack of coloration... some sort of juvenile? is this guy a reef menace?  <Possibly to the first, unlikely to the last> I first saw him creeping towards my green star polyps and since I read about some Nudibranchs feasting on soft corals I sucked him up with an eye dropper and deposited on the opposite side of the tank... temporary solution at best if he is a coral muncher... any info would be appreciated. <Enjoy this world my friend. Bob Fenner> thanks form me and my mini-reef Ben

Nudibranchs going to their deaths. Hi Bob, It's Mike (PF) again, While I was looking for other sources for live rock I came across https://www.gulf-view.com, aka Marine Life, Inc. I'm not sure if you're familiar with them or not, they are a Florida aquacultured rock outfit. <Yes, know of the company> While I applaud their efforts re aquaculturing live rock, they are selling H. edenticulas, aka Greek Goddess Nudibranchs as reef cleaners on their "special" page. I am writing them to inform them of the error of their ways and was wondering if you could add your voice in too, since your are a far more well known and respected member of the community than I am. <Will, gladly... by strange coincidence am doing some penance and spiffing up the "Nudibranch" page on WWM... have a couple of thousand (not a mis-print unfortunately) of mainly Nikonos extension tube shots of members... and could absolutely strangle (myself and) Helmut Debelius for his "reference" work on the group... either he's wrong on i.d.'s a great deal of the time, or the academic community are having a go with the public... Anyhow, please do addend your note to Marine Life with this small response, the link to the "Nudi" pc: http://WetWebMedia.Com/nudibran.htm and an offer on my part to lend them pix, info. if they'd like.> I hope I'm not imposing on you, but from all I've seen and read, and from talking to you online, I gathered you're against this sort of practice. <Never an imposition my friend. Your input is applauded. Bob Fenner> Thanks again, Mike

Nudibranch mis-purchase HI bob I purchased this strange looking creature today. It looks like a slug or snail without a shell. It is about inch & half long. The body is a purple with a pink tone. There is a solid white border around the top. On the top there are two tentacles which always remain extended. Then in the back there are approximately ten tentacles which extend and retract from time to time. It has placed itself on atop a piece of live rock. Could you please advise what it maybe and what coral it could hurt if any. Thanks for your time. Regards !!! <Yikes... very likely you're describing some sort of Nudibranch... please read over the scant coverage of these "naked gill snails" on the www.WetWebMedia.com site... if you just have this one small one in a sizeable system it will likely not cause much pollution if/when it perishes (most have quite restricted diets...). And your other livestock will very likely leave it alone. Bob Fenner>

Re: Nudibranch mis-purchase Dear Lorenzo- I understand that your mailbox may be full filling in for Bob in his absence. As they say curiosity killed the cat but they do have nine lives.  <I wonder how many catfishes have?> I am anxious to know the name of the creature I described in my message dated 6/6/01 below. Any information you can forward ASAP would be greatly appreciated. I want to also determine what it eats. Since I wrote you on 6/6 this creature has placed something resembling a very thin membrane but I don't know if it is waste or maybe eggs. It is extremely thin and is stuck on a plastic tube which is in the tank. The size about is about 1/2 inch long. I have noticed that it must be very strong because it hangs of the live rock in mid air for awhile at a time. Only a small fraction of its body stays anchored on the rock. Pls see my below for my original message. <Ah, still that unidentified Nudibranch... sad to state, most of these exquisite animals die of a lack of nutrition in captivity. I re-direct you to the article and FAQs file on this group posted on our site: www.WetWebMedia.com and the Internet for much more... Bob Fenner> Thanks for your assistance and prompt attention. Regards Cecilia Dowd-Kozak

Fin Rot? My husband has a 50 gallon saltwater tank. Up until about 3 days ago, he had  a black and green Nudibranch in the tank. Unfortunately, this poor creature  met his demise when he got sucked into the power head. I'm not sure how long he was stuck in the powerhead, but I came home and  noticed that everything did not "look right" with the tank. That is when we  found the Nudibranch and promptly removed him. At the time that we found  him, we also noticed that all of the fish were stressed and covered with what  looked like freshwater aquarium "ick." There are two blue/yellow damsels,  one domino damsel, one yellow tang, and a clown fish in the tank. At first,  the domino damsel seemed to have suffered the most. His fins were tattered  and bloody and he had a white "covering" on his eyes. Soon after, the clown  fish and one of the blue/yellow damsels were affected. The tang developed  clear, blister-like nodules on his fins (excluding the tail and dorsal fins). We have done a 25% water change and yet the "fin rot" seems to be getting  worse. The tang now has no flesh to speak of on his fins...there is nothing  left but bone...and his dorsal fin and tail are showing signs of infection.  My first thought was that the Nudibranch released a "poison" into the tank  when he was chewed up by the powerhead. Am I correct? If so, what action  and/or treatment can be done to clear this up before all of the fish are  affected and killed? The biggest problem is that my husband also has  anemones, tube worms, sponges, soft corals, and other invertebrates in the  tank. Whatever is in the water seems to be affecting EVERYTHING and we don't  have a hospital tank. PLEASE help us...give us some advice...something to  try! Thanks, Gina and Dane Gerdes >> How much made-up synthetic seawater do you have on hand... Change ALL or as much of the water as can be removed and replaced to have all your gear still working (i.e., if only half the tank can be refilled, but all your filters, pumps, heaters work, do so). Do you have any chemical filtrants like activated carbon on hand. Do place that in your filter flow paths... You've noticed how distinctive Nudibranchs are in "wild" photographs? And how slow moving they are in captivity? Yes they are bundles of noxious materials... as part of their involved defense mechanisms package...  Here's hoping that the massive dilution and absorption saves the rest of your livestock. Good luck to you. Bob Fenner

Whodunnit? I have a 75-gallon, 6-month old reef with a light fish load and mostly corals and clean-up crew. Recently two Nudibranchs (or so I am told) came in on a colt coral. The coral died, the unexpected guests grew bigger. They were white, about 2 inches long, tentacles like snails, with white lacey, almost "fluffy" bodies. Beautiful! I have seen similar, larger ones for sale from a local livestock dealer. After a large mushroom colony that had been thriving suddenly crashed (everything else in tank is fine) I became suspicious, and removed the creatures. I know that it is not known for sure what Nudibranchs eat -- is it possible they ate the colt and mushrooms?  I have a cowry in my reef, as well. It is exquisite, and stays on the glass or substrate much of the time, but occasionally can be found on corals (knocking over the live rock is a problem). I consulted The Conscientious Marine Aquarist, and found no indication that they may eat my soft corals. Could the cowry be the culprit? Did I remove the wrong tank inhabitants? One other question -- my phosphates and nitrates have been consistently high lately, so I added a Poly Filter just last night. In addition, I added "d*nitrate" over the weekend. I was told these would be okay together in the sump. Do I discontinue adding supplements? I usually add Coral Vital and C-Balance every other day, and Strontium and Iodine once a week. I have beautiful coralline algae growth that has taken months to begin developing. I hate to sacrifice the growth process.  Please advise! Thank you, Margaret Camp >> Thank you for writing. I do strongly suspect the Nudibranchs. Yes, there are "naked gill" snails as you describe, that have soft coral diets... and they can be destructive.  Of the couple hundred species of Cowries (family Cypraeidae) I am familiar with a few that will eat some soft corals... but not as you relate (have some friends of friends in the shell interest who have me looking for a handful of species on foreign travels... for science-karyotyping... so have more than a tangential interest in the group). The cowry would not consume the leathers like this... The PolyFilter should be fine, with or without the other product, and I would continue with your supplement routine... and increase water changes, boost lighting to "use up" the excess nitrates... Is there any way to convince you to consider making a denitrator in the sump? Even just adding a couple of units of Siporax beads there will significantly reduce the NO3. Bob Fenner

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