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Old 01-11-2004, 06:56 AM   #1
KLN
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Murder in the tank

After sone strange deaths in the tank, we finally caught this creature -- whatever it is -- in the act. Don't know how he managed to catch fish, but he did, apparently at night when they were still.
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Old 01-11-2004, 09:16 AM   #2
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Here is another picture of it from underneath, climbing the glass. Anyine have any idea what it is? Some form of sea urchin, I guess.
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Old 01-11-2004, 09:53 AM   #3
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It kind of looks like a pencil urchin? I don't know how an urchin could have caught a fish. Are you 100% that this guy actually killed the fish, just because it was feeding on the remains does not necessarily mean it did the killing.
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Old 01-11-2004, 11:03 AM   #4
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Not sure, but he was found attacking a Mexican turbo snail after we had several fish and a shrimp unexplainably die. No symptoms, water problems, etc., just dead the next morning, one with some unidentified creature on him. Then this guy shows up going after a big snail. I hoped that was the answer, because I could not figure out anything else.

Of course, my main form of exercise is jumping to conclusions.

I have put it in another tank that is still cycling, with high nitrites. If y'all are sure he is not the culprit, let me know so I can put him back in the other tank before he succumbs to the nitrites.

My bride will not be happy. She is sure he is the killer.
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Old 01-11-2004, 09:11 PM   #5
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Looks like a pencil urchin to me also, but I would be surprised if he was the culprit.


Kaye
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Old 01-11-2004, 09:18 PM   #6
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Definitely a pencil urchin, how did he show up in the tank unexpectedly would be my question?
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Old 01-11-2004, 09:22 PM   #7
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Pencil urchins are largely carnivorous and can catch and eat "sleeping" fish and shrimp. They are not good choices for aquariums with such so while it is a shame it has to be banished to nitrite land, it is probably the culprit in your tank.
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Old 01-11-2004, 09:23 PM   #8
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Pencil urchins just eat stuff that's left over and they are actually classified as herbivores. They are not known for attacking things. And they're just too slow to catch anything that is alive and mobile.

Please be careful, the pencil urchin become toxic/venemous when they die and are sensitive to water changes.

As far as your creatures dying, something else is going on for this to happen. The pencil just cleans up.

Have you checked ALL basic params (nitrates, nitrites, ammonia, salinity, no temp fluctuations, outside chemicals, etc?) Any drastic temp swings? Salinity very low/high? Is the tank very young? Do you have a skimmer going? Is there a bunch of new inhabitants/liverock? What is the capitol of Zimbabwe?

All kidding aside I would worry the least about that urchin and be most concerned about the real cause of your livestock deaths. 8O
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Old 01-11-2004, 09:43 PM   #9
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http://www.reefkeeping.com/issues/2003-11/rs/

I have never had one to testify what they have and have not eaten, however Dr. Ron does not list them as herbivores.

Quote:
Undesirable Species

Pencil Urchins

Eucidaris tribuloides (Caribbean)
Largely carnivorous; will eat many decorative animals, also can eat “sleeping” fish, or shrimp.

Eucidaris metularia (Pacific)
Largely carnivorous.

www.wetwebmedia.com also classifies them as being carnivorous:

Quote:
Hi again, I was told by the lps that a pencil urchin which i already bought only eats algae and sometimes coralline algae.
<neither is true at all... although more urchins than not do eat microalgae nicely. The pencil urchin is too often sold for algae control and it starves instead in most aquaria... it has decided carnivorous inclinations.
Quote:
I have not read that common pencil urchins have any significant toxin if at all. They are known to be extremely safe even if killed or dead in aquaria regarding some so-called toxin. Keep in mind though, that this is one of the few Urchins that is not largely herbivorous! They need meaty fare to survive>

Take the information for what it is worth.
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Old 01-11-2004, 09:48 PM   #10
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Wha!

Well I will be a stuffed shrimp,

look at this

http://www.marinedepotlive.com/1313514.html


and it's the caribbean species they say is herbivorous!

Back to the books for me hoops, LOL

How big is this rampaging urchin anyway KLN?
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