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Old 11-05-2011, 05:52 PM   #1
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Food for Cleanup Crew

I'm new to the hobby. Have my first tank up and running for about 3 months now. It's a 45 FO. I have a live sand substrate and am using a RENA XP1 canister and a Penguin Emperor 400 for filtration Right now I just have 2 yellow tail damsels. About 2 weeks ago I got a bloom of diatoms all over the rock and based on advice at lfs put in a cleanup crew. I have 12 Astraea snails, 4 red legged hermits, and a sand sifting starfish. Everyone seems happy and is dealing with the diatom problem after about a week. So, now I'm worried they are going to run out of food. What do I feed the snails, crabs, and star?

On a side note, several of the snails have climbed the glass and seem to like hanging out at the surface. Is this normal?

Thanks in advance for the help. I'm going to have a lot of questions moving forward.
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Old 11-05-2011, 06:19 PM   #2
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Hi and welcome to AA The clean up crew will find plenty of food in your tank but if your concerned they are not getting enough i would do what i call 'target' feeding and place a tiny amount of flake near them,but would only expect the hermits to show any interest
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Old 11-05-2011, 06:40 PM   #3
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astrea snails, and the sand sifting star aren't going to eat flake food. the hermits will eat it however.
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Old 11-05-2011, 11:29 PM   #4
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Thanks. I saw an article that suggested using algae pellets or seaweed for the snails. Not sure about the star. My main issue is that I really don t know how to tell if they enough food or not. I'd rather not use death as an under feeding indicator but I know over feeding is an issue as well.
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Old 11-06-2011, 10:33 AM   #5
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well, that's hard to gauge. use your best judgement i guess. i will say that most of those sand sifting starfish starve in closed systems.
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Old 11-06-2011, 10:50 AM   #6
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you can try using seaweed sheets but a star would require meay foods
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Old 11-06-2011, 12:53 PM   #7
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I appreciate the input. I've seen several suggestions that recommend shrimp and said as food sources for the star and that a feeding of once a week on top of the detritus it collects should be sufficient. Can I buy raw shrimp and said at the grocery store and just chop it up small as a food source?
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Old 11-06-2011, 02:55 PM   #8
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you can get frozem mysis shrimp, rinse and thaw it out and try to hand feed the star. my serpent and brittle star do well with hand feeding even do well if you just float the food in there
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Old 11-06-2011, 09:17 PM   #9
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Get rid of the star. It can't eat enough in your sized tank, and will die and cause an ammonia spike. It is pretty inevitable. Almost everyone's dies within a year, even experienced reefers with large tanks.
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