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Old 03-21-2006, 08:47 AM   #1
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Purple gorgonian Sea Blade problems

A few weeks ago I received a Purple Sea Blade Gorgonian as a freebie frag with an order of hermits and snails that I bought. After putting it in my tank it opened up and seemed ok. Polyp extension was nice and I even got some cool pictures. I had to go away for business last week. The tank was in my wife's capable hands but all she was really doing was feedings, no dosing. When I returned, the gorg had started to decline in health. The blades had some white splotchy areas and the polyps had all started to turn brown in color, with very little extension.

At this point, the blades appear to be deteriorating and the round skeleton is viewable. The blade fles nearly disintegrates on contact, but there is still some response by a few of the polyps in some areas. Is there anything I can do to save this?

Water params are really good. I even did a good water change this weekend to bring the nitrates down, but they weren't that high to begin with.
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Old 03-21-2006, 02:53 PM   #2
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What is the nitrate level? Please give a number.

Here are a few more standard questions...

How big is the tank?
How long has it been up and running with fish in it?
What type of filters (including protein skimmers and refugiums)?
Type of lighting?
Total wattage of lighting?

These corals are not at all easy. They seem to damage fairly easily and may be due to a susceptability to infections. What I do to try and save the coral is snip off the good parts from the bad parts, soak in a coral anticeptic dip and place back in the tank where the light and water flow are most appropriate. Should be well anchored and protected from falling. When handling coral, it is best to use gloves like surgeon gloves. They are thin enough to allow you to feel what you need to feel, but protects the coral from the acids on your fingers. Don't expect any miracles. Coral disease and meds are still far out from common knowledge. It's an area of coral husbandry that is still wide open for discovery. Good luck.
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Old 03-22-2006, 01:42 PM   #3
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Nitrates are at 5 ppm
Tank is a 75g standard 4 ft tank
This tank has been in place for a month. I migrated from a 60g hex to this more appropriate size for SW. Everything from the previous tank was transferred over, including water and substrate. This gorg was not acquired until after the move.
Filtration is 50 lbs of LR and a skimmer
Lighting is 260w of 50/50 PC/Actinics
I had plenty of flow on this as I know they require it. This is really a shame as I hate to see anything die in my tanks. I am curious about the white splotches that formed on the blades. My first thought was some type of disease. Here's some pics.


Pic when I first got it:


Pic after a few days:



Pic taken yesterday:
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Old 03-22-2006, 05:29 PM   #4
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gorgonia

http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&i...coral+diseases

Here is a Google search on coral diseases. May help. One thing to keep in mind, wild diseases may be very different than what they pick up during transport in captivity. Though there may be something relative to what the gorgonia is experiencing.

I or anyone else cannot be at all positive about the recovery of this coral.

The nitrate levels are fine. 05 ppm is actually OK for reef. That'll allow macro algae to have something to eat

The tank is too new and being it was moved, is still too new for sensitive animals. I have seen a lot of things online stating these gorgonias are good starter coral, but they are NOT. This is a deep reef coral that do not like light and must be fed everyday. It can be target fed phytoplankton on the off days of feeding the rest of the tank. This is done with a turkey baster type or syringe and the food is pushed right onto the coral. Do this mainly toward the evening. Most deep reef coral are nocturnal feeders, but if the polyps are out during the day, then by all means give it some food

Check to see if this species requires an iodine suppliment.

Here are a couple of photos I doctored so you can see where to cut. If you do not cut the bad areas, the infection that is overcoming the coral can spread.

NOTE: Instead of bleach water as I mentioned before to sterilize a pair of small sharp scissors, use rubbing alcohol instead. Faster and easier. Rinse it well prior to use. Handle the coral by it's base and remember to wear thin hugging to your hands gloves...like surgeon gloves. If you do not have access to gloves, then a sandwich baggie or a piece of cellophane (some kind of thin plastic that doesn't have any coloring) over your hands to protect the coral.

http://www.seachem.com/products/prod...s/ReefDip.html

Here is the reef dip I mentioned in the other post. Use this to treat the good pieces. Any bad pieces that may not be eaten all the way through could be put into a QT type to see if anything heals. The good pieces can go back into the main tank straight into the substrate in a shady area with good water flow.

What kind of rock is that do you have it set in???
What is the SG and temp. of the tank?
What are the values of calcium and alkalinity?

What kind of camera do you have? Nice shots!!
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Old 03-22-2006, 05:34 PM   #5
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gorgonia

Oops...forgot to attach the photos...duh...here they are...
Attached Images
File Type: jpg eviltwinscoral1b_150.jpg (185.9 KB, 30 views)
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Old 03-22-2006, 05:41 PM   #6
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Sorry...had to do another post for a separate photo...don't know what the problem is...but here's the other photo...

OK...something is obviously wrong here...I'll get that other photo for you in a few. Gonna check extension...

I apologize.
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Old 03-22-2006, 05:48 PM   #7
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http://i14.photobucket.com/albums/a3...inscoral4b.jpg

Here it is!! I promise...LOL. I tried uploading this photo three times on AA. Something isn't taking somewhere, but there's nothing wrong with the photo or the file extension. I made the edits in Paint Shop Pro. I just decided to upload it to my online photo album.
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Old 03-22-2006, 06:31 PM   #8
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Thanks VERY much for all of the support. I guess I should have asked days ago and maybe things wouldn't have been so bad. The stalks deteriorated a bit more but I understand what you indicate needs to be done from the pictures you posted. I will get the reef dip and give that a try.

Regarding your questions:

The gorg is attached a an aragocrete plug. It was like that when I got the frag.

SG is 1.023. Temp is 80 degrees and barely fluctuates.

Calcium is 400. Alk I only have test strips for, and does not provide the usual measurement. I need to get a good test kit.

My camera is a Canon Powershot G5, a 5 megapixel digital that is fully manual as well as automatic. If you'd like to see my other pics you can see them here:

http://photobucket.com/albums/e235/Tracer1989/Aquarium/
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Old 03-22-2006, 06:40 PM   #9
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I do need to go pick up my son from school, but I wanted to leave a quickie note, then I'll add more later to the thread...

Lower the temp to about 76 degrees, but do it slowly. A degree or two ever 4 to six hours or so.

I'll get back with you later.
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Old 03-22-2006, 07:26 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TCTFish
I do need to go pick up my son from school, but I wanted to leave a quickie note, then I'll add more later to the thread...

Lower the temp to about 76 degrees, but do it slowly. A degree or two ever 4 to six hours or so.

I'll get back with you later.
Won't this impact my other inhabitants? I'm guessing fish, not so much , but I have other corals and inverts in my tank. Check my pics.
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