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Old 11-21-2003, 02:19 PM   #1
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is it a molt? is it a shrimp? no, it's...

This might be hard as I don't have a picture (digicam is already on order. I know I need it).

I just found this molt-looking, shrimp-like, transparent little thing floating just over the sandbed (it's actually crushed coral). I took it out. It looks like a molt, but it is so small it could even be the real thing.

It looks like some kind of shrimp; it has a set of four antennas, the longest of which is nearly as long as the whole body. Total lenght including antennas is about 1 centimetre (a bit less than 1/2"). It has 5 sets of visible legs, the biggest ones being at the center of the body.

I suspected it could be a mantis shrimp molt (assuming mantis shrimp DO molt... do they?), but it lacks the two large front claws which I suppose should be visible.

The body is thin and roundish, like a small tube. Different from a shrimp in that regard. It also seems to be lacking a head, meaning there's no part of the body which clearly looks like a head, as is the case with the blood shrimps I have in the tank.

Tank is 55g housing 4 fish, 2 blood shrimps, 4 turbo snails, 2 blue legged hermits. I have a large colony of copepods, but this is much larger than the biggest of them I have ever seen.

Finally, I have seen something very similar to this floating around just days ago; I assumed that was also a molt on the moment. It was eaten by a fish (well, more like tore apart as a matter of fact) before I could net it out.

Ideas. Thanks!
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Old 11-21-2003, 03:57 PM   #2
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Probably a copepod or amphipod i find their molts floating around all the time.....i caught 5 of them once and thought i caght 5 mantis shrimp til someone told me different so i can understand why you would think that thats what it is! LOL
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Old 11-21-2003, 04:18 PM   #3
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mysis shrimp is my guess
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Old 11-21-2003, 04:30 PM   #4
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Mantis shrimp when they molt you will not see it.. They burry it outside their den to keep from being discovered.. If it is any kind of large shrimp my guess would be a pistol shrimp which my molt every 1-2 weeks Yes its growing VERY rapidly..

HTH,
James
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Old 11-21-2003, 05:33 PM   #5
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Thanks everyone for the input

e-cat, I have looked at some mysis shrimp pics and I think you nailed it, it looks just like that.

Is it good to have these develop naturally in the tank? How much do they grow? I figure they will probably get eaten by the fish or inverts, right?

Good to know it's not a mantis btw
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Old 11-21-2003, 07:46 PM   #6
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there a great source of food for your fish, im sure they clean your tank too some point, im not sure how big they grow the biggest i have is about .5". after the lights have been out on your tank for an hour or so shine a flash light along the rocks and glass and you will see them running all over the place and a bunch of other things that i bet you never knew was in there.
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