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Old 05-15-2003, 06:59 PM   #1
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Brittle Star is eating my Clown fish!!!

Just came home from work and noticed my clown fish was missing. Found him in the arms of my Brittle star inside my rock. Many questions:

Would the brittle star attack the clownfish or did the clownfish die first and then get grabbed?

Do I let the brittle star finish his meal or do I dismantle my rock structure and pull the fish out?

Water parameters are within range, other fish (now down to 2 damsels) look ok.
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Old 05-15-2003, 07:10 PM   #2
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Quote:
Would the brittle star attack the clownfish or did the clownfish die first and then get grabbed?
IMO, if it is not an emerald green brittle star (known fish predators), the fish died first, the brittle is just cleaning up for you.

Quote:
Do I let the brittle star finish his meal or do I dismantle my rock structure and pull the fish out?
You shouldn't allow a deadfish to stay in the tank, it could raise havoc with the parameters, but you shouldn't tear apart the tank either. If you feel you have enough critters in there to consume the majority, if not all, the clown, then I would leave it. If the fish will sit in there and rot...I would find a way to remove it, disturbing as little of the rock work as possible.
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Old 05-15-2003, 07:20 PM   #3
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He is not green emerald brittle star, not sure what type, but he is brown.

I think I have enough critters to take care of him (1 brittle star, a bunch of snails, 12 red leg hermits, 12 blue leg hermits). He's really buried deep inside a rock and there is definitely no easy way to get him out. I needed to use a flash light to even find him.

So now I have to figure out why he died. Again parameters all seem ok. I just did a 15% water change the day before. I had been using tap water, but I tested the water and it is high in phosphates, so this time I used the ro/di water from a machine in the supermarket.

I mixed the salt in a tub to match SG of tank, let it sit for 24 hrs, and brought it up to the same temperature as the tank. I then performed a normal water change.

The clown had been showing NO signs of any distress or disease. Any recommendations on how I can diagnose this further?

Thanks
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Old 05-15-2003, 07:33 PM   #4
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Hmm, what are the actual parameters? Any possibility of a sudden ph shift? Everything seems in order, so I am really just grabbing at straws, sometimes we lose fish and never know why.
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Old 05-15-2003, 11:08 PM   #5
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Tests for Am = 0, Nitrates = 0, Nitrites = 0, pH = ~8.2

pH was pretty much the same before and after water change.


BTW - the star gave up it's hold on the fish, and was able to get the deceased out of the tank. No marks on the clown at all. Still had it's eyes and definitely didn't look like it was attacked.

My plan is to leave the tank for at least a couple weeks before introducing any more livestock. Probably do at least one more waterchange and see if any blatant problems expose themselves.

I'm bummed...
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Old 05-16-2003, 12:38 AM   #6
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sounds like the ol' "my snail ate my fish" story line.

Brittle or serpant stars are way too slow to be able to catch a moving healthy fish.

It's not the star fish who caused his demise. He is just cleaning up the mess

Later

Ender
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