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Old 05/27/2007, 08:34 AM   #1
louist
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Trachyphyllia boring shrimp/crab

I bought a fluro green Trachyphyllia about 2 months back. It had a notch on its rim but I assumed it was damaged during shipping.

The coral expands during night time as per usual, but that notch never healed up. Today I moved it into my nano tank and while I was sitting there and looking at the tank, I thought I see something move in that hole, so out came the camera.

First photo shows the extent of the damage, before and after extraction. The second photo shows the "shrimp" itself. If anyone can ID it, it would be great. If you look closely, you can see eggs and I only hope I won't end up with an infestation. This guy actually resembles something I buy at the fish markets.....






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Old 05/27/2007, 08:48 AM   #2
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Oh my goodness. I hope removing that nightmare will save your coral and it will bounce back fast.

Wow, that thing seriously gives me the heebie jeebies. Never heard of this guy before.. Going to send the link to someone I know who maybe knows..

Crazy!


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Old 05/27/2007, 09:08 AM   #3
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wow, never saw that before, do you think those are eggs in the last couple pics


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Old 05/27/2007, 09:15 AM   #4
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They look like eggs to me... And that is one nasty little bugger... Hope to never see one besides on this thread...


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Old 05/27/2007, 09:20 AM   #5
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Yes, I believe they are eggs also (as mentioned before). Since this guy would've been doing her thing for ~2 months, she might have had other broods. Hopefully the eggs/offspring wasn't missed by my copperbanded butterfly, flame angel, coral beauty and cleaner wrasse considering how closely they inspect everything!

I thought I will post these up as references so that if anyone sees damages like these, they can investigate further.

PS. Look at the claws and mouth part.


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Old 05/27/2007, 09:52 AM   #6
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There is a smaller hole just to the left of the big one. Could this be a baby doing the same thing? That is just an evil looking criter.


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Old 05/27/2007, 06:26 PM   #7
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Wow! Cool looking creature......do you know if it actually was hurting the coral? Perhaps some kind of symbiosis between the crab and the trachy?

Mike


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Old 06/06/2007, 11:38 PM   #8
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Remember this nasty customer?

Well, it would seem that she left a legacy behind! I've been observing a second hole to the left of the original one. Over the last few days I have notcied tiny movements inside, but nothing definitive. Until today.

I saw a set of claws moving inside the hole, and thus the coral will be coming out for another close examination today. I've been feeding the Trachyphyllia HEAPS to help it fight the intruders, so fingers crossed that it will win this battle.


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Old 06/07/2007, 04:22 PM   #9
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No one said it yet but Kudos on those pictures...with that thing only being 1cm long...those photos are pro quality.

but ya...sorry about the coral. good luck.


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Old 06/07/2007, 04:32 PM   #10
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Indeed they are excellent pictures! I wonder if I can use them for a personal club presentation?

Also, have you considered how to rid the new residents of the coral? I wonder if you couldn't use a pipette and drown the hole with fresh water but otherwise leaving the rest of the coral safe from a change in osmotic pressure?


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Old 06/07/2007, 08:41 PM   #11
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that is terrible and those are eggs under the abdomen, how is the trac doin?


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Old 06/08/2007, 05:11 AM   #12
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masterfuji01: Thanks! I extracted a small one that looks exactly like the bigger one except this new one is only about 2mm long.

chrisstie: I hope my extraction is thorough and that no offsprings will be left now. At this stage, I am more concerned about my 4' foot tank (where this piece can from) since I have a few other pieces of Acan. in there (including the "famous" rainbow one). Your idea is a fine one, and I might use a heavy handed technique if I see more suspicious movements.

Regarding using the photos for your local club presentation, send me a PM about it


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Old 06/08/2007, 10:01 AM   #13
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UHHHGGG!

thing looks like a termite from haties!

anybody know what, exactaly that thing is?


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Old 06/08/2007, 03:41 PM   #14
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Borneman's Aquarium Corals book says they are gall crabs. I did some research on them awhile back and found out that only the female's live in the coral. The male's are very tiny and only come to fertilize the female and otherwise hang out in the tank. The coral grows around the "gall" (shell) and with that the female is imprisoned for eternity, and is only able to catch food as it passes through the shell. They are supposed to be commensal "protectors" of the coral. They groom the coral,keeping it free of parasites and predators. However they do changing the patterns of growing (gall's). Hope this helps. I had a shell on my favia, no crab though.


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Old 06/08/2007, 07:29 PM   #15
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scubajsm, gall crab was the first thing I looked and this guys doesn't resemble a gall crab.

In addition, the coral was not growing around the hole, the hole just keep enlarging. In fact, the bigger hole is only a few mm's away from the mouth of the Trachyphyllia when I removed the parasite.


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Old 06/08/2007, 08:34 PM   #16
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EEE Gats...that has to be the ugliest thing i have seen...

though it may not be a gall crab...it may stilll live the same way...referring to the male roaming free about your tank while the female(s) feed off the corals...

i am truely sorry you have had the displeasure of dealing with something like this...

i am sure Leslie the 'crab freak' could ID it for you though...


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Old 06/13/2007, 08:37 PM   #17
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I found a similiar crab among an acan hillae that I have. I pulled it out and found similiar openings around the acan with what appear to be eggs, argh! i took some pics of the crab and will post tomorrow along with pics of the acan...


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Old 06/19/2007, 08:23 PM   #18
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Here are the pics of the crab I found on my acan hillae:





By the way, my acan is doing much better now since I've removed this crab.


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Old 06/19/2007, 08:53 PM   #19
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and this is why i have a magnifying glass next to my tank. wife and kids laugh at me for inspecting every inch every day.


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Old 06/19/2007, 09:02 PM   #20
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I've seen the same crab bore a whole in a chalice frag I had. After removed the chalice skin just grew over it. I haven't had anyother problems in my tank as far as I can tell.


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Old 06/20/2007, 12:34 AM   #21
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My trachy had one of those on it and it never harmed the coral. That brain was the happiest piece in my tank. When the tank went down and the crab died the coral started to degrade from that spot outwards.


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Old 06/20/2007, 12:35 PM   #22
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That makes sense, since I believe the crab's location would be the coral's weakest point.

Here's a thread on my local reef site inspired by this one:
http://www.manhattanreefs.com/forum/...gall-crab.html


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Old 07/11/2007, 06:15 AM   #23
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I just wanted to thank Louist for posting this thread. I just found the same nasty little shrimp/crab in my new Elegance. If I wouldn't have seen this thread I probably would have just thought it was a deformity in the skeleton and paid no attention to it. It was full of eggs just like the pic. This is a nasty nasty creature straight out of the bowls of @%^&#.
Did your coral survive?


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"A scientist seeks the truth, wherever that may lead. A believer already knows the truth, and cannot be swayed no matter how compelling the evidence."

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Old 07/11/2007, 09:06 AM   #24
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I just found two more of the crabs on my acan...must have missed some of the eggs. The acan was doing great after I removed the first one as new polyps sprouted in areas of the rock that were bare. I'll post pics as soon as I pull them out again...nasty little buggers...


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Old 07/11/2007, 09:49 AM   #25
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Hey guys - I'll bet Interceptor might be good to treat these guys. In stronger doses it kills all crustaceans. When I treated for RB's a couple years ago - it took out all my shrimp, acro crabs and even an emerald crab. Doesn't affect LPS at all, it actually makes them kinda hungry. I would take all my LPS out - put them in a bin with a powerhead and use half a pill. Maybe treat it for a few hours. Make sure you use a bin that you can watch the buggers die off.


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