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Old 02-27-2005, 10:35 PM   #1
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Lets talk Cucumbers!

I'm thinking about adding a sea cucumber to my tank to help clean the sandbed of detritus. My sand is very fine ( like sugar ). The pictures I've seen of cucumbers show them on more of a gravel type sandbed. I'm wondering if my fine sand will be OK for a cucumber or should I try something else, like a pepermint shrimp. Also, should a cucumber be OK with my horseshoe crab and a couple of dwarf hermit crabs?
Thanks!
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Old 02-27-2005, 10:40 PM   #2
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some cukes are ok and others are not ! what were you looking at ? fyi horseshoe crabs are really a no no in typical tanks a 46 is way to small! you really need a huge tank for them to live long term!
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Old 02-27-2005, 10:49 PM   #3
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some cukes are tank nukers!
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Old 02-28-2005, 12:57 AM   #4
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I was thinking of a Tiger Tail Sea Cucumber from Liveaquaria or an Atlantic Sand Cucumber from Premium Aquatics. I wanted something that would clean the substrate and be interesting to look at, but not destructive to the tank. If it looks like the cucumber isn't the best choice I'm open to suggestions.

I've had the horshoe crab for 8 months and he seems to be doing well. He's always had plenty of sand area to play in, but with the addition of my live rock recently I know he's getting crowded in there. He's popular with the family but I know that shortly I need to find him a better home.
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46 gal Bowfront
36 inch Coralife 192 watt Lunar Aqualight with a 10K & Actinic
1 Emperor 280 Bio-Wheel Filter
2 Hagen Aquaclear 802 Powerheads with Quick Filters
1 AquaC Remora Protein Skimmer
1 200 watt Heater
52 pounds of Live Rock
2 Blue/Green Chromis
1 Ocelaris Clownfish
1 Hairy Mushroom Coral
1 Scarlet Skunk Cleaner Shrimp
8 Dwarf Hermit Crabs
10 Turbo Snails
10 Margarita Snails
5 Cerith Snails
5 Bumblebee Snails
1 Queen Conch
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Old 02-28-2005, 08:29 AM   #5
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Sea Cukes are great at cleaning a sand bed. I have a cuke in both my tanks and they do a great job at cleaning the sand bed. I like the Atlantic cuke better, JMO2.
I have never had them nuke a tank? I had a tiger tail disapear in my 55 and nothing happened to my tank. I replaced him with a yellow AC and he is great.
They only clean the top layer of the SB and having a fine sand is ok for them.
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Old 02-28-2005, 11:16 AM   #6
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I have a tiger tail cuke from liveaquaria. it has done well in my tank.

I would only have 1 cucumber in that tank.
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Old 02-28-2005, 11:52 AM   #7
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Is it just certain Cucumber species that can release toxins or is it all of them?
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Old 02-28-2005, 03:56 PM   #8
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Potentially all are a risk although some species less so than others. It really comes down to the amount of water volume and type of filtration used. For the most part tiger tails and pink/black Hawaiians will not inpact a med-large sized tank. There is also spawning to be considered. While quite rare, the eggs produced by the female are extremely toxic. Once the eggs do the rounds through the equipment and burst, the toxins are quickly distributed through the water column. Sessile and mobile inverts are typically never affected, fish however would be dead within an hour or two. Sperm released by the male will degrade water quality but is not toxic. Unfortunately there is no way to tell them apart.

Just be sure if you ever consider adding one that the water paramaters are quite stable and the tank is at least 6+ months matured. An unstable or young tank will not be able to sustain them. Cukes cannot be target fed and Sea apples are even more of a concern.

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Old 02-28-2005, 04:03 PM   #9
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Thanks Steve. Once again you've done more than answer my question. I think my tank will do fine w/ out one. I've had my fish too long to want to lose them to some Cuke eggs.
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Old 02-28-2005, 04:11 PM   #10
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You Mean the toxins are the white stuff that come out of the sea cucumbers ? Like In The Movie Jackass? lol
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Old 02-28-2005, 06:09 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tito2491
You Mean the toxins are the white stuff that come out of the sea cucumbers ?
Nope, small brown eggs.


Quote:
Like In The Movie Jackass? lol
No clue. I only watched bits and pieces of the movie.

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Old 02-28-2005, 10:53 PM   #12
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Sounds like a cucumber would be an interesting addition to an aquarium if I'm prepared to accept certain risks. But, like BDAWG said, "I think my tank will do just fine without one." I can't see putting my tank at risk just to add a curiosity. Thanks for all the advice! So.... forget the cucumber, what would you folks suggest as a bottom cleaner?
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36 inch Coralife 192 watt Lunar Aqualight with a 10K & Actinic
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1 200 watt Heater
52 pounds of Live Rock
2 Blue/Green Chromis
1 Ocelaris Clownfish
1 Hairy Mushroom Coral
1 Scarlet Skunk Cleaner Shrimp
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Old 03-01-2005, 12:08 AM   #13
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I'm not trying to scare you out of keeping them, just wanted to be sure that you are informed of what could happen, not what will.

That said, I have two myself. The Black knobby and pink/black Hawaiian have been in my 90 gal for many years. The Sea apple however had to go

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Old 03-01-2005, 01:21 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Steve
I'm not trying to scare you out of keeping them, just wanted to be sure that you are informed of what could happen, not what will.
Oh you didn't scare me away. I just don't want to risk it at this time. When I become a little more advanced in the art of reefing I definitely want to get one. They are very cool. 8)
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Old 03-01-2005, 08:00 PM   #15
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Where did you get the info on the eggs? I have never heard about this and I curious.
Has anyone ever seen this happen in a tank? Or is this just one of those tails that spreads around?
The white stuff in the the Jack *** movie is the cuke spitting up its guts to scare away the threat..... They can die after this but most regrow there guts in the wild. In a tank I can not say.
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Old 03-01-2005, 08:07 PM   #16
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I've never heard about the eggs either. But everyone I talked to said they do release toxins when stressed.
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Old 03-01-2005, 08:44 PM   #17
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I'm actually not in the habit of spreading "stories". I have personally had it happen with a Sea apple, a close relative of cukes. Both species are broadcast spawners and the female will release her eggs into the water column. Once the eggs are broken, the toxins are released and the level of toxicity rises as more eggs are destroyed. No amount of carbon or water changes will make a difference either.

Even if your home and see it happen, there's little you would be able to accomplish before the damage is done.

AFAIK, they are not capable of releasing toxins into the water as a means of defense, they simpley spit out the gut. The toxins are related to the eggs only.

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Old 03-01-2005, 09:19 PM   #18
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So they don't release toxins when stressed? I learn something new everyday I'm on this site.

How do you know when they are going to release their eggs? Is there anything you can do to stop it? <---Stupid question, I know.
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Old 03-01-2005, 10:18 PM   #19
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So they don't release toxins when stressed? I learn something new everyday I'm on this site.
As I said they do not expel toxins but the body does however contain them. It is a deterent to natural predators trying to eat them. That's why they can be a danger when they die. The toxins are of no concern as long as they are healthy.

Quote:
How do you know when they are going to release their eggs? Is there anything you can do to stop it?
There is no way to tell if a cuke is about to spawn nor is there any way to stop it short of it being removed from the tank.

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Old 03-03-2005, 07:23 PM   #20
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I am not saying your spreading stories I just wanted to read up on this... Checked google and there is a ton of info on breeding cukes... They are bread in captivity for food and other uses.. Very interesting.
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