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Old 09-01-2005, 04:16 AM   #1
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Reef Safe Emerald?

I got my first pulsing xenia last week and have been watching it extend and wave around for a while and then tighten up into a small little ball. I was not sure why this happened, maybe just getting used to a new environment. Today I noticed that the xenia looked damaged like something was picking at it. Well sure enough a couple hours later I saw my big emeral crab (boris) picking at it. I thought emerald crabs were reef safe. By the way, Boris is now in Quarantine wating for his trip to the fish store.
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39 gallon (2yrs) 40lbs live sand. 23 lbs LR (still collecting) , 1 turbo snail, 5 Nasarius snails, 10 blue knuckle hermits, 1 zebra hermit, 1 scarlet hermit, 5 red tip hermits, 1 Green Chromis, 1 Blue Damsel, ? Ricordia, candy cane coral.

135gallon (2 months)
125lbs live sand, 100lbs live rock, 2 175W Metal Halide, 1 175W VHO Actinic (so far). Berlin Protein Skimmer in 40 Gallon Sump. 2 Maxi Jet 1200's. 10 Nassarius, 10 mexican turbos, 10 astreas, 20 Blue Leg Hermits, 20 Scarlet Hermits, 5 Emerald crabs, 5 peppermint shrimp. 1 Copper Band butterfly, 2 False Perculas, 1 Javanese Damsel.
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Old 09-01-2005, 08:25 AM   #2
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I have kept emerald crabs for years and have had no problem with them at all in a reef. However, they are opporunistic creatures, feeding on what is available to them. Generally they will scavenge for algae and accept meaty items, but if not enough food is available to them, they will give your corals, fish, and smaller inverts a try. HTH
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Old 09-01-2005, 10:13 AM   #3
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I've seen my emerald sit in my finger leather and on other corals but never eating the tissue.
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Old 09-01-2005, 11:59 AM   #4
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I never even see my emerald crab! We know he is still alive b/c we saw a molt recently, but he only comes out at night.
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Old 09-01-2005, 12:52 PM   #5
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Emerald Crabs, like other crabs may or many not nibble at your corals. I have an Emerald and it has not touched any of my COrals, but that does not mean it's not looking at them and drooling.
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55 Gal FOWLR
105 lbs Live rock from LR.com
2 Yellow Tail Damsels
2 Green Chromis
1 Emerald Crab
3 Peppermint Shrimp
4 Scarlet Hermit Crabs
1 Blue Knuckle Hermit Crab
1 Large Turbo Snail
Hitchhickers: 3 Purple sea urchins, lots of rock crabs, pistol shrimp, brittle stars, snails, worms, etc.
and aiptasia, aiptasia, aiptasia (it was free $$)
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Old 09-01-2005, 01:45 PM   #6
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I have had nothing but angst with crabs, emerald and sally lightfoots. Eventually, they all get big and voracious. They all enjoy meat and are opportunistic, especially at night when your expensive fish and inverts are trying to sleep.

My emerald killed a baby clown one evening - he went back. Following month, I added two SF crabs. A month after their introduction, one Sat morning, I saw them eating at the front of the glass about 8:00 AM and thought; That's strange. Upon closer inspection, they were finishing off a beautiful 2" Maxima clam! That very clam was brilliant and healthy the prior evening as I fed my tank. My son and I were discussing how awesome it was and how well it was doing - BAM, next morning is was breakfast for crabs

Eventually, they all get big and voracious. watch out for them
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Old 09-01-2005, 01:46 PM   #7
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Yeah, I definitely caught him red handed. Afterward I saw that a few of the branches on my xenia are missing. Do they maybe get more aggressive as they get bigger?
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39 gallon (2yrs) 40lbs live sand. 23 lbs LR (still collecting) , 1 turbo snail, 5 Nasarius snails, 10 blue knuckle hermits, 1 zebra hermit, 1 scarlet hermit, 5 red tip hermits, 1 Green Chromis, 1 Blue Damsel, ? Ricordia, candy cane coral.

135gallon (2 months)
125lbs live sand, 100lbs live rock, 2 175W Metal Halide, 1 175W VHO Actinic (so far). Berlin Protein Skimmer in 40 Gallon Sump. 2 Maxi Jet 1200's. 10 Nassarius, 10 mexican turbos, 10 astreas, 20 Blue Leg Hermits, 20 Scarlet Hermits, 5 Emerald crabs, 5 peppermint shrimp. 1 Copper Band butterfly, 2 False Perculas, 1 Javanese Damsel.
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Old 09-01-2005, 01:51 PM   #8
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More aggressive after they acclimate and establish their territory. Then, bigger, hungrier and more bold, they become.
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Old 09-01-2005, 08:47 PM   #9
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I have never had a bit of problems with my emeralds in either of my reefs. They are great cleaners but, like anything with claaws, should be watched in a reef setting.
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