Colonial hydroids

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Colonial hydroids

Postby Carinya on Mon Oct 13, 2014 9:13 am

I have a bad case of hydroids. At first I thought they were some kind of feather duster, but nope.

I'm looking into Panacur / Fenbendazole and wondered if anyone had used it. I hear I am supposed to "take the corals out" but I just don't see that being possible, given that the hydroids are all over the rocks on which the corals are attached. At present I'm just thinking I need to try the medicine & if the corals die, they die.

Thoughts or suggestions, anyone?

Carrie
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Re: Colonial hydroids

Postby Carinya on Tue Oct 14, 2014 5:28 pm

I ordered the Panacur. I'll post what happens.
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Re: Colonial hydroids

Postby starboard on Tue Oct 14, 2014 6:40 pm

Please do ! I would like to know if it works myself.
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Re: Colonial hydroids

Postby BraenDead on Wed Oct 15, 2014 8:24 am

I'm also very curious to know how this works for you - keep us updated! If possible, please post a picture of the pests pre-treatment.

Bob
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Re: Colonial hydroids

Postby Carinya on Sun Oct 26, 2014 6:56 pm

Hi guys. The tank is a 33 long with T5 lighting and an HOB skimmer. The tank had not been in great shape owing to mild neglect. I thought these were just feather dusters. But obviously learned differently fairly recently & took some action.

Here is one of the rocks before treatment.
before.png
before.png (139.3 KiB) Viewed 1741 times


And detail of the hydroids in the bottom-right corner of prior photo.
before detail.png
before detail.png (133.02 KiB) Viewed 1741 times


I bought Hydrox from Fish to the Nth. The purchase went fine and I medicated the tank per instructions every other day for four doses. Today was day 8 and I did a water change, also per instructions. During the medication, I stopped the skimmer & took out the small amount of carbon I typically use (also per instructions). The instructions clearly said to take out and put back in the coral with specific timing, but I didn't have anywhere else to put the coral, so they stayed in. The coral casualties are definitely on me. As you can see, the hydroids were everywhere and at this point, I figured that whatever coral died from the medication probably would have died from getting overgrown by hydroids in the long run anyway.

So far, what died were two different types of purple gorgonians and two types of xenia. (Note, that's all I had of either...the medication wiped them out) I have to say, the speed with which the medication decimated the gorgonians was impressive.

My remaining soft corals are significantly not happy, neither are my zoanthids. They haven't been open for a few days and as you can see from the "after" photo, one soft coral has deflated. Two other soft corals look like they're not only deflated, but darker. But they appear to have survived. My LPS are closed more than they'd usually be at this time of day, but seem like they'll be OK. The SPS seem totally fine, but I only have hardy species.

My three small fish & two peppermint shrimp are definitely OK. My very small cleanup crew seem OK, but I didn't go through & count them before/after. I'll check more closely to make sure the snails lived...I saw hermits kicking about but now that I think of it, did not specifically notice any snails living.

The hydroids themselves still have some kind of brown stalky structure but the little "feather-duster" type heads are all gone. Generally they just look like a tangle of brown steel wool now, except mushier.

after.png
after.png (197.81 KiB) Viewed 1741 times


I removed a lot of them with a toothbrush (one I keep for the tank!) before the water change today. I started the skimmer again & added back some carbon. I'll check in here after a few days from now to let you know what's up. In the meantime, post with any questions.

Early indications are that it was successful, with some coral casualties that might have been avoided if I had followed the instructions.

C
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Re: Colonial hydroids

Postby MM on Tue Nov 18, 2014 5:41 pm

were they hurting anything? why the extreme of using a poison?

Things like that have a way of working themselves out eventually or when you find something that likes how they taste.

Curious - Mark
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Re: Colonial hydroids

Postby Carinya on Wed Dec 10, 2014 12:21 pm

Hi Mark. Sorry for my delayed response, but the hydroids indeed were taking over the corals. They were spreading and growing up onto the surface of the corals and choking them out. They were a mat on every surface on half the tank. I had looked quite a bit to see if anything ate them and there seemed to be nothing. Hopefully I didn't miss something obvious there.

As a footnote to the poison (as you accurately named it), there were just so MANY of the hydroids that when they died it threw everything out of whack. Obviously I had expected that to happen to a certain extent, but wow. I couldn't do water changes fast enough...fell behind...utter chaos.

So while the medication worked, the end result was really bad for the tank.

C
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Re: Colonial hydroids

Postby MM on Thu Dec 18, 2014 9:58 pm

yeah, that is why I would not advise it. I have had things take over tanks before but eventually they work out. I would recommend for a situation like this adding some fresh live rock so that some animals that eat them will be introduced and so that animals that compete them with for resources are added. Single species take over because your micro fauna lack diversity and the poison further destroys the diversity. 99 percent of animals that billed as pests on RC are not even close to pests. With nearly everyone the best response is more diversity. I cringe when I see people doing extreme things over a "pest" so two pieces of advice. 1 add something that introduces diversity, a rock covered with zoanthids will be full of critters between the polyps. 2 water changes reduce the nutrients the envasive is using.

I hope this helps anyone else that has something like this, Oh and never trust internet dogma, or reef central pest myths

- Mark
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Re: Colonial hydroids

Postby Rueg on Thu Dec 18, 2014 11:44 pm

When I had them - when I worked in the tank and crushed/broke some of them - my sailfin tang would eat what was left. He loved them. It was very strange - since they stung the crap out of my hands and wrists and upper arm. He wouldn't touch them otherwise though - probably would sting. Mine did not look like the ones in the pictures though - must have been a different type.
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