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Old 09-22-2006, 09:34 PM   #1
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Just curious, and stupid non-salt question

Not being a salt water aquarium person and not being able to find any information about it I thought I would ask. What is live rock? I live on the coast but in the northwest so I thought I would ask as it seems it might be something that I would find locally.

I also know it is legal here to take up to 10 hermit type crabs from the water a day. I have seen them many times and was wondering if there is a difference between salt water types and fresh water or if they will adapt to any aquarium setup? I have seen them in the tidal rivers locally in numbers sometimes in the hundreds but usually they are fairly scarce.
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Old 09-22-2006, 10:19 PM   #2
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I look at LR as two things 1) Rock from the ocean that has life inside the rock that will benefit your tank examples are shrimp,crabs and other types of life. 2) Rock that has developed nitrifying bacteria on it (cured). This will provide natural filtration and remove excess nutrients from your tank. Cant help on the crabs
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Old 09-22-2006, 11:36 PM   #3
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i dont think you really want beach crabs, typically thats were the pollutants are, the beach
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Old 09-23-2006, 01:04 AM   #4
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Well the hermit crabs would be in their own tank so no worry there, I just wondered if I had to go down and get water for them from the tidal flats on the river all time or if fresh water would work.

As for live rock, do you mean it actually has micorscopic creatures living in it in some cases? If so, that would be cool, I have seen that locally except it wasn't microscopic. Very interesting stuff I suppose.
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Old 09-23-2006, 01:52 AM   #5
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Liverock is just that. Rock with life on it. Like melosu said, it's either rock that have actual living things on it/in it, whether they are critters you can see, or you can't.

If the crabs are in saltwater, I wouldn't put them in freshwater. Is that what you are asking? SW hermits are rather cheap in the LFS and can be kept in a tank (most species).
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Old 09-23-2006, 02:24 AM   #6
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I know what you mean about the hermits, fish_4_all, but I'm not sure about the water parameters those buggers would want. Those things are fairly close to the ocean where the river dumps out, and I wonder if the salinity of the water changes with the tide. I mean, when the tide is out, I'd expect the water to be closer to no salt content - but when the tide is in I bet the salt content in the water goes up. If you have access to anything to test the specific gravity of water (refractometer, hydrometer, etc) you could probably get an idea of what kind of water those crabs would like by testing at different times of the day.

Regarding live rock - the stuff people are talking about here is collected from the South Pacific and Caribean... a bit warmer than Grays Harbor! And a lot of the life is not so microscopic either!
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Old 09-23-2006, 02:35 AM   #7
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Those are the ones I am talking about. And yes, they are estuary but I see them in the highest numbers after the rains start and the water salinity starts to drop significantly. Could be a matter of a brachish spawning need for these little guys. Not the most ornate looking ones but then again most I find here have painted shells. I have also never seen these ones out of the water, always in it unlike the standard hermit crab you see sold as pets. Probably not an option to take them out just to prevent them form suffering if they aren't supposed to be out of the water for long periods of time. This is why I ask before I have to post in urgency to try and save them.

That is cool with the live rock. There is a "rock" here that is similar, it usually has muscles and other worms in it that washes up in winter storms. Is actually a compressed clay but it can have a lot of different organisms in it and some nice sized one too. Is a wonder to see what you can find at the right times of the year.
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Old 09-23-2006, 11:33 AM   #8
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actually umm, worms and mussels arent quite LR.

LR from what i understand is dead coral that little amphipods, mantis shrimp, bristleworms, starfish, and small crabs live in. a clump of mudd with some mussels on it is isnt really the LR we speak of
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Old 09-24-2006, 02:11 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hc8719
actually umm, worms and mussels arent quite LR.

LR from what i understand is dead coral that little amphipods, mantis shrimp, bristleworms, starfish, and small crabs live in. a clump of mudd with some mussels on it is isnt really the LR we speak of
Actually, liverock IS rock with life. It does not need to be dead coral. You can take a bunch of dead rock that has been sitting out forever, stick in in water and add some livesand and other livestock, and in no time, it will be "liverock". Liverock is rock with living bacteria on it.

Don't worry about saving the hermits. If they are living there and in great numbers, they are perfectly adapted to life in the estuary. Think about it, when the tide goes out, even harde to keep corals get exposed to air for great amounts of time. They learn to adapt to it, so moving them away will only harm them.
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Old 09-24-2006, 02:15 PM   #10
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I meant I? would have had to save them from own stupidity if I took them out of the water and put them in an aquarium, not from their home, .

Although I haven't heard anyone say they won't live like a normal hermit I haven't heard anyone say they will so in the water they will stay.

Also, the compressed clay is very hard and can easily be picked up without falling apart. It can be scratched so it isn't "rock" but I have seen all nature of creature living in it.
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