Are brittle stars reef safe?

Discussion in 'Inverts' started by rosereef, Jan 10, 2007.

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  1. rosereef

    rosereef Astrea Snail

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    I apparentally had some brittle stars hitchhike on my live rock from the lfs (I love that petstore's live rock.....lots of goodies come with it ^.^ ) I only bought 2lbs and just recentally I found it ( I had earlier thought their arms were worms sticking out of the rock) I most likely have 3 or so but I only seen 1 out of the rock. My question is are brittle stars gennerally reef safe?
    These are about 1inch long and have black stripes.
     
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  3. jtReef

    jtReef Ritteri Anemone

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    Yup reef safe.
    Love them.
     
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  4. Blade_Runner

    Blade_Runner Gigas Clam

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    They are part of many clean up crew packages. Good stuff, but hard to find once they get into the rock.
     
  5. rosereef

    rosereef Astrea Snail

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    Cool =D I found another one.
    They seem to like to hide in holes with their tenticles sticking out for food.
    Another question, do they like to eat phytoplankton? I have some I add to the tank for the hitchhiker featherdusters those same rocks have =D
    The kind I use is Kent Phytomax (is that a good kind?). One drop per 50gal seems like a small amount.
     
  6. grubbsj

    grubbsj Gigas Clam

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    I have only 1 brittle star in my tank, he has grown to be 10 - 12 inches in dia. Twice a week I make sure that he gets a bit of "meat" during the evening feedings. If I don't do this, I have seen that he is actively "fishing" for something.

    Though I have no direct proof, my Royal Grama, disappeared about 3 weeks ago. I have since been "accusing" the brittle star of eating the decorations. There has never been any indication (inside, outside, or chemically) in the tank to indicate what happened to the Grama. I keep looking for it to "pop out of a crevice" in the live rock any day.....

    Enjoy,
    Joe
     
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  7. inwall75

    inwall75 Giant Squid

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    Great Point Joe!!!!

    Karma to you

    There are different species of Brittle Stars.

    There are Mini-Brittle-Stars that stay very small their whole life. These are always reef safe and they are awesome detritus eaters.

    Then there are the other species of Ophiuroids. Most of them are reef safe too provided there's sufficient food. Then there's the green ones and the yellow ones. NOT a good idea at all. Susan describes the risk in this article. aquarium

    Even a black, brown, red, etc. can be dangerous if there isn't sufficient food for it. If you have a large one and your tank is very clean, target feeding it like Joe does is highly recommended. If you are in a situation and you are starving, you might eat something you wouldn't normally eat.
     
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  9. jtReef

    jtReef Ritteri Anemone

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    You can also feed them at night.
    I have about 10 black ones and a 20 inch bubble tip that is incredable.
    At night I just place a few food pellets near them when they all come out a few times a week and they seem happy. It is amazing bc. all of them are well over 10 inches but during the day I can only find the bubble tip. And that is just in a 75 gal. I beleive they are the reason my tank is so clean as I have no snails and only abut 3 tiny hermits
     
  10. dablarb

    dablarb Plankton

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    brittle star hitchhiker

    I also got a small, maybe 1 1/2 inch diameter black striped brittle star as a hitchhiker that was under some soft coral that I purchased. I later saw one of its legs detached. Would any small shrimp, hermits or clowns attack it? There are also some small bristle worms (red w/ white bristles that came along with live rock) around. I haven't seen it since the first sighting, but from the threads, gather it is nocturnal, and I am not!
     
  11. Corailline

    Corailline Super Moderator Staff Member

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    It is a dry heat, yeah right !
    Yes mostly nocturnal, but hard to see as well. They hide in the pores and hole of live rock with only their legs sticking out when food is introduced.

    You must be doing some heavy duty research to have found this thread. :)