Clean up crew

Discussion in 'Inverts' started by Peredhil, Oct 2, 2008.

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  1. Peredhil

    Peredhil Giant Squid

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    I've read on 3reef clean up crews take as little as a few days to a few weeks to clean a tank. At least an end of cycle filthy 55 gallon. That's what I've got. So I thought I'd take a now pic and a pic each day until it gets basically pleasant. We can all see how long it takes. Hurray!

    My order from www.reefcleaners.org came in today. The order is as follows:

    15 Blue Leg Hermit Crab
    60 Dwarf Cerith
    18 Dwarf Planaxis
    8 Empty Hermit Shells
    15 Florida Cerith
    15 Limpets
    2 Nassarius Vibex (all they had)
    3 Fuzzy Chiton

    What I actually got is:

    a crap load

    So I've put those in and flipped the snails that needed it. Without further ado, todays pics, 10 02 2008

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]



    I'll try to keep the angles basically consistent.
     
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  3. cuttingras

    cuttingras Starving Artist :)

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    WOW that sure is nasty! I can't wait to see it clean!!!!!
     
  4. eggerstout

    eggerstout Skunk Shrimp

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    its dirty, hope the cleaners do a good job, i'm looking forward to the progression of pictures
     
  5. Phayes

    Phayes Aiptasia Anemone

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    if its mostly diatoms, it will clear up on it's own without the need of such a large cleanup crew. It also seems to be on your glass more than anything. Get a magfloat and scrape that junk off, the filter should make quick work of it.

    Also- noted that your LR is looking a bit on the unsteady side. lol. You may want to move it back and sit it against the glass and possibly use some epoxy, twist ties, or PVC to hold it together so it doesnt crash down on you and break the glass.
     
  6. GuitarMan89

    GuitarMan89 Giant Squid

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    I think this is a cool little experiment
     
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  7. Peredhil

    Peredhil Giant Squid

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    Today's Pics.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    So no apparent change in the pics. But looking at the tank in person, you can see trails made by the snails all over the rocks. I don't know how one can actually tell something like this from the picture, but the majority of my growth is on the LR. Hopefully, over time, this will become apparent in the pics, but so far, they're loving the LR; ignoring the glass (mostly).

    The Chitons are interesting. They leave a very large swath of cleaned LR. But they don't move too much. One of the three has yet to move from the shell it was shipped on. Giving it time though, no hurry.

    The Florida Ceriths are waking up. These are the ones, I think, that came with tentacle looking things growing from them (some plant or other, not sure). About half of these are on the move now.

    The limpets... hrm... yeah.... these like to hang out on their back, which of course sucks. Maybe 1/3 of these actually stay on the rock. So far these little dudes are not worth the hassle. So far. We'll see.

    Dwarf Planxis = invisible. At least as far as viewing them goes. :p

    I'll update again tomorrow. If you want me to watch for anything particular, send me a message or post it here.

    Stay tuned.
     
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  9. johnmaloney

    johnmaloney 3reef Sponsor

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    Cool thread! I will stay tuned. That is not a large clean up crew at all for a 55 gallon. The dwarf ceriths where most of the numbers come in are quite small as Peredhill can attest. Great for cleaning the nooks and crannies in the rock.

    While this is a great experiment, the proper thing to do when adding a clean up crew to fight and established mess, is to clean as much of it you can that is easy, (like the diatoms on the glass), and then allow the snails to concentrate on the harder areas. Otherwise you will need to get a clean up crew that is built for handling a tank with a major outbreak, (or basically a clean up crew and a catch up crew), and then trade away the extras when it becomes more stable. With that said, I think this will be an interesting thread because Peredhill chose not to do this.

    With the crew you got, I would think it will take a few weeks to tackle that job, it is just very large, and the crew wasn't designed to handle that much extra food in a prolonged state. But it will get clean and sparkly again. No doubt in my mind, even without a little catch up from you.

    The Chitons are funny that way. Slowly but surely is the way they go, watching them move is like watching grass grow. But if you keep an eye on them, you will notice some very distinctive behavioral patterns. They have homes, territories, and except in shipping, like to give another Chiton its space.

    You probably will never see the Planaxis again. Once they get in a tank, they burrow down and then will spend the rest of their life under your rocks. If you ever want to visit them again, lift up a rock that is on the sand and you will find some, (although they will usually bunch together under one rock area). If you are lucky you may see your mini-colony marching across the sand in search of a new home.
     
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2008
  10. silverwolf72

    silverwolf72 Skunk Shrimp

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    The limpets only feed at night when it's dark and will return to one place when there done. Nothing should be on it's back so I hope you acclimated the snails well they are really sensitive to salinity change and if not done right will die after a couple of days
     
  11. Av8Bluewater

    Av8Bluewater Giant Squid

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    How much was that package?
     
  12. johnmaloney

    johnmaloney 3reef Sponsor

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    They can handle salinity changes really well. The live in intertidal habitats, and experience 4 drastic swings in salinity a day. Not all limpets are the same though. The black ribbed limpets are an exception to the general rule stated before. (Also many species of limpets, especially keyhole limpets are not reef safe, but that is another thread). You were right about the Florida Ceriths, that is macro algae on their backs. Various species of gracilaria. No pest algae they were checked for them before it left. (Well before they left the QT).
     
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2008