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Old 07-01-2008, 09:00 PM   #1
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Zoanthid on back glass... Good Idea? Bad Idea?

OK... here's the background info:

I bought a clump of zoanthids several months back, and as normal they kind of morphed colors on me from when I bought them. Since they had bright orange skirts I figured they wanted high light, but I put them on the bottom anyway. So now I have a clump of brown centered, oranged skirted zoanthids. And following the Rule #1 of Zoanthids ("If the owner thinks I'm ugly, I'm going to grow like crazy") they started going gangbusters.

I moved the rock to a corner spot against the glass to free up the front space for something else. It was kind a holding area until I got around to selling them to the LFS. Well... I noticed tonight, that several of them are attached to the back glass and are starting to grow up the glass... following Rule #1 of Zoanthids.


So here's the question:

Am I courting disaster to let these attach to the back wall, establish a good population, then detach them from their "mother rock" and sell the original rock back?

While I don't particularly care for the look of these, if they were just growing on my back glass and not taking up valuable rock/sand real estate, I'm thinking they wouldn't be too bad. It'd add a nice dimension to the tank. If they get a little out of hand, I can prune them back - making sure I siphon off the surrounding water as I'm doing it to minimize the toxin release.

On the other hand, they are obviously fast growers, so am I just asking for trouble allowing them on the glass to start with? Seems like if later down the road if I want them off, I just scrape them off with a long handled scraper and they'll come off as a mat. Or would I risk releasing a ton of stuff that would nuke all the other stuff in my tank?

Kind of sitting on the fence here, but would like to hear other's opinions. Think I'm leaning towards letting them wander onto the glass, but I just haven't convinced myself that would be a good idea.

Thanks in advance!

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Old 07-02-2008, 12:06 AM   #2
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Well i can't help to much with your problem but my thought is if you get them to attack to the glass a little higher up they may get some of their color back and then you would have a very cool back ground for your tank.

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Old 07-02-2008, 12:38 AM   #3
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I've got some zoanthids growing on the glass (as well as green star polyps, xenia and anthelia on the glass as well). I've not done anything to stop them or prevent their spread:

I've never had to remove zoanthids from the glass (yet) so I'm not sure how that would go but it doesn't seem that it would be all that difficult.
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Old 07-02-2008, 08:41 AM   #4
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I have anthelia growing on my back glass and zoa's growing on the overflow. I pretty much wanted them to grow there because it makes it easy to remove them for trading/selling.
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Old 07-03-2008, 04:17 PM   #5
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I have seen people put corals such as zoas, GSP and other fast growing spreaders on their back glass to cover it up. Nothing worng with it and if you want to let them grow there go for it. Heck you could even add different colors and types and have a garden on the back glass.
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Old 07-03-2008, 06:13 PM   #6
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Thanks all for the comments. I guess what I'm really wondering now that I've had some time to think more about it is how difficult it'd be to get them off the glass later down the road if I decide I don't want them there anymore?

cccapt... sounds like you regularly remove the zoas from your glass - do you have any issues with toxin in the water since you can't remove them and you have to do all your cutting underwater in your main tank? Or since you're probably doing small chunks at a time, it really doesn't even matter?
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Old 07-08-2008, 11:11 PM   #7
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Easy as pie to remove them from the glass, IMO. Just slide a razor blade under them. I cut xenia like this all the time when it attaches to the glass. You should not have any toxin issues while cutting them either. I would wear gloves and run some carbon for a bit if you don't already.

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glass, zoanthid

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