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Old 02-04-2004, 11:38 AM   #1
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All "Shell" Broke Loose

Hi all-
Just got back from vacation in Maine (it was chilly!). The first thing I did when I walked in the door, check on Fred the turtle & the aquarium. Needless to say the aquarium needed a good scrubbing and a water change, but to my surprise, I was missing a scarlet leg hermit. His shell is now attached to a green leg hermit. Hmmmm. I found the green's old shell but no trace of the scarlet. Is he dead? hiding?
To avoid this catastrophe in the future, where does one purchase empty shells?

The second new thing going on in the aquarium- my blenny has taken over the peppermint shrimp's home. The shrimp waits just outside his hole for the blenny to come out, when she does he just follows her to another hole. I have never seen this before. I know valentine's day is coming up , is there some type of interspecies love going on here?
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Old 02-04-2004, 12:59 PM   #2
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I buy my extra shells from my LFS. They have a large stock of collected hermit shells that they sell for about 5 cents a peice.

HTH
Andrew
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Old 02-04-2004, 10:49 PM   #3
steve-s
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As well as the extra shells for the growing crabs I would suggest you remove the green hermit. If it's the one I'm thinking of (green with a thin stripe down the appendages), they are quite aggressive and not all that reef safe. Hermits in general are not all that ncessary given the right mix of snails but those in particular would not be on my list.

You can also get extra shell from the local hobby/craft store. Just be sure they are not glossy or polished.

Cheers
Steve
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Old 02-05-2004, 12:55 AM   #4
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I was just going to make a post talking about this. I was think of removing all my hermits. Will the snails do everything the hermits did? I have removed a few in the past for picking on the snails. The only ones they seem to bother is the nasserith snails (my spelling s---). I think they just do it when they get bored. They have plenty of shells.


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Old 02-05-2004, 01:54 AM   #5
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Green hermits are not a species I would choose but the reds could be decent. The key identifier for the red hermits is the yellow eye stalks. Scarlet hermits (Paguristes cadenati) are actually very reef safe as a rule and should not be a concern. The common red leg (Clibanarius digueti) is a little more hit and miss.

As I said though given the right mix of snails, hermits really are not needed. Nassarius, cerith, nerite, trochus, margarita and true turbo's in varying amounts will add a great diversity and pretty much cover all the bases. At the least, I would suggest nassarius for the sand bed, cerith for the substrate surface and glass, and a combination of nerite and trochus for the rock. For a 75 gal (depending on need) I would get about 15 each of the last 4 mentioned.

Cheers
Steve
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