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Old 05-13-2006, 08:22 PM   #1
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Xenia "Die Back"

The folks at the LFS mentioned that almost all xenia owners end up in a crash at least within the year. Also, when they mention that, they describe it confidently as "die back". What is a die back? I know what a die-off is. But a die back sounds a bit too gramatically weird.

They say that most xenia owners have a perfectly healthy xenia, thriving, then one day, just wipe out the whole tank because it dies.

They mention that it's not perfectly explainable yet. They said that some say it is lack of iodine (which I suppliment anyways), or whatever unexplainable reason.

So basically, they are implying to me that I will deal with a crash within a year if I get a xenia.

Any thoughts? Any studies out there done?
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Old 05-13-2006, 08:33 PM   #2
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my thoughts are that although xenia does crash, it does not necessarily happen as they say it does. I have had mine for YEARS and (knock on wood) have not had issues. I do not supplement iodine. I do water changes once a month.
There are studies out there, just google for them.
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Old 05-14-2006, 01:55 AM   #3
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thank you Hara!
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Old 05-15-2006, 09:09 AM   #4
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I believe there are a number of things to help avoid crashes in my experience. Also, I had xenia for almost 4 years and had no problems. Then, I believe I got lazy and things happened....

I had two variations. Let it get ENITIRELY too dense and cut back on my propogation. Didn't do water changes like I should. And like Hara, didn't dose iodine (that stuff scares me when there isn't a reliable test to ensure you don't overdo it), just water changes.

As you do some reading, you'll find xenia is a weird thing. Can not grow in some of the most beautiful, well maintained tanks, yet do fine in others. Some say their's likes good flow, others little flow. Some dose, iodine. Others never. Some crashes can be unexplainable. I think the secret is to not let it get too much of a hold on the tank so that if it dies off, it won't foul the water too much. I had too much in the tank and when it died off, it took all my inverts with it because of the ammonia. Now if I didn't have the forest I had, I believe I would've fared better.

But the "most...crash within one year"? Now way is that true.

Good luck.
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Old 05-15-2006, 11:04 AM   #5
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How about some forum comments over the internet that Xenias can go "sexual" and kill everyone else? Do they go sexual, if you may?
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Old 05-15-2006, 11:09 AM   #6
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"Asexual propogation" is what you might have heard about. I believe that reference is used that way to describe how a life form (such as xenia, mushroom) splits and makes a new piece that grows next to the original.
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Old 05-15-2006, 02:17 PM   #7
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I've had xenia for about a year now. I don't dose iodine, just weekly PWC's. It grows like crazy so I'm always pruning it, and I believe that is part of my and others success. There is a theory out there that says xenia grows so rapidly because each polyp has a fairly short life span. So, assuming this is correct, regular pruning removes old polyps before they die and allows room for new ones to grow.
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Xenias can go "sexual" and kill everyone else?
I've never heard of xenia going sexual either. Macro algaes like caulerpa can go sexual and crash a tank.
HTH
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Old 05-15-2006, 05:56 PM   #8
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How do you prune? Is this similar to fragging?

And if I only have one saltwater tank at home, how do i prune without worrying about toxins being emmitted out for other specimen to stress over?

If I don't have a superglue of some sort, or if I am uncomfortable using superglue, are there other easy ways to keep fragged xenias into place?

What are the basic steps of fragging?

What are the basic steps of prunning?

Thanks.
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Old 05-15-2006, 06:46 PM   #9
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If you want to keep xenia on a rock I would suggest using a rubber band for about a week and then take off the rubber band. It will usually attach itself within that time. Check out this link to help you out with some other ways to keep corals in place.

http://www.fantasyreef.com/viewtopic.php?t=359

As far as your other questions, what is it that you're trying to frag? I don't know about prunning, but my guess is just cutt off the outer edges. I think you're supposed to cutt off the growth every two or three weeks. I could be wrong on that though. HTH
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Old 05-15-2006, 09:11 PM   #10
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I was 50/50 with rubber bands. Sometime, the xenia would let loose. I was 98% OK with rubber bands and toothpicks. I'd stick the toothpick thru a decent amount of the bottom of the stalk. Then, I'd loop the rubberband thru each end and around/underneath the rock. Sometime the rubberband would slice thru the xenia. Mine took about 2 days to attach. Hold the pick at the bottom of the rock, slip the band off and twist/pulee the ruber band thru/out.
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