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Hydro

Elephant slugs

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+Hydro    44

There was recently a discussion about keyhole limpets which was interesting because I have had a population explosion over the last few months. Recently I've been seeing them close to corals that were having base recession. I had a small tricolor colony that started to die off slowly, I picked it up to dip it and there was 11 of them around the base of the corals, mostly smaller ones. Today I found a dead frag in my frag tank, flipped it over and there was a limpet. I now have a large one in my frag tank that washed down from the DT. I have noticed some monti frags I thought were bleaching out but they actually look like they have been munched on, maybe its that limpet. I've dipped them and no other pests are found. I looked around online and I'm finding online that some people are saying that they are NOT reefsafe...that they eat coral polyps. I'm going to go back to the office after the lights turn off to see what kind of population that I have and if they are on any corals. If they eat coral then I'm not surprised that I have them, the aquarium gods like to throw constant challenges at me to test my dedication ^_^

post-1255-0-09447700-1302454016_thumb.jp

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+Hydro    44

http://www.liveaquaria.com/product/prod_display.cfm?c=497+526+1752&pcatid=1752

At the bottom says they have been known to eat coral polyps. Now what to do with them!!! I have at least 100 of these guys!!! They are very hard to remove without killing them, I hate to just kill them but I may have to.

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Teresa    58

Keep me updated. I just noticed last night that I have several large ones in my 12gallon - which probably means I have a ton more babies! I hope they are reef safe unsure.gif. I've lost some sps lately, but I think that's more to temp swings than anything else. Everything else in this tank has been growing fine and nothing looks munched on (I'm assuming this means part of it is retracted/bleached and some of it looks fine?).

Keep us posted!

T

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DaJMasta    4

I was always under the impression that keyhole limpets were the unsafe ones and if you could avoid that shape of hole in the top of their shell then there was a much better chance of them being safe.

Good luck with the infestation....

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Teresa    58

wait - haven't we talked about that being an elephant slug in the past? http://www.austinreefclub.com/topic/16381-question/page__p__114314__hl__%2Bblack+%2Bslug__fromsearch__1#entry114314

It has a different scientific name than the keyhole limpet http://www.seaslugforum.net/showall/scutus.

Are they different, the same? Is the elephant slug reef safe? I think that's what mine are because they don't have the "keyhole" white ring on their back light shown in the picture from liveaquaria.

Hummmm

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+Hydro    44

Teresa I have been reading more about them and they are not reef safe, even according to live aquaria who sells them. I think that maybe since I have so many of them their main food source is low and that's why they might be turning to the sps. If I just go in and kill them it won't be that hard to knock a dent in the population, at night they all come out. If I get after them once a week for a month I could probably get the numbers way down quickly.

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Teresa    58

How do you plan to kill them? I know my population is growing because a year ago I only saw one and last night there were at least three adult sized snails moving around the entire tank. Can you describe what your sps die off looks like. I'd like to narrow the cause to temp swings or these guys (or both). On the other hand, its a small tank and I have a few other sps that have not been touched and are doing fine.

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+Hydro    44

Offroadoge suggest that I get an aluminum rod and grind a point on the end of it....spear them. The corals have base recession usually only in one part, turning white. The monti frgas look like they have been sanded on top, does that make sense?

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Bry    7

I had an "elephant slug" with some live rock I got from a craigslister. He and I both had corals of all types and that particular snail was harmless and quite the awesome creature.

They keyhole has black in the middle of the white, the elephant slug does not. http://www.seaslugforum.net/find/scutus I realize it's in the same family as the keyhole limpit, I'm just saying two of us had no problems with the one we had and I never fed it or had algae problems. "Scutus is an algal grazer".

Hopefully you have the good kind.

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Gonzobob    16

From ReefCleaners:

<LI>Keyhole Limpets- Not all limpets are the same. Owning a limpet is like owning a snail, the species really matters. Many of the keyhole limpets are known predators, some of which feast on SPS coral.If you keep coral, only keep species limpets who are herbivorous.

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+Hydro    44

I've been doing some reading and according to all the pics I have seen they are scotus a.k.a. elephant slugs, makes me feel slightly better. When I read about them most people say they are reef safe. I'm suspicious still, I'm going to observe them for the next few mornings before the lights come on to see what they are up to. If I see any on my corals then....

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+Hydro    44

So I went back to the office and my lights were just about to shut off. I decided to do some invsestigating and pulled out some of my frag racks from my sump, I collected 2 large limpets and about 7 small ones and put them in a QT tank. My oregon tort has bleached in a few places and it looked like it was being munched on so I took it out of the tank to check for limpets. You can see from the picture that I found some, 9 to be exact. I ended up collecting about 50 limpets from the tank total in about 20 minutes, probably a couple hundred more in there. I'm going to go in to the office before the lights come on and collect as many as I can, since they are mostly nocturnal I should be able to get at least 50 more. Mostly I'm finding 1/2" sizes but I did find a couple that were around 2".

I'm pretty sure these guys are munching on my sps coral, and I think its because of limted food supply because of the vast number of them. I think that in small numbers they are reef safe but once they run out of food they may turn to sps. I don't feel like I need to remove them all, which would be almost impossible, I just need to get most of them out. They can be easily removed using a pair of pointed tweezers, doesn't seem to do any damage to them. I think that I'm going to contact a couple of vendors to see if they want to sell them for fish only tanks.

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JamesL    232

The scutus I had never touched my corals. But it was the one where it had a solid shell on top, no hole in it. And mine was huge (like 3").

So Hydro, have you confirmed that they have solid shells on them?

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+Hydro    44

They are scutus (elephant slugs). Yes they have the slit in their mantle on top that exposes the white shell underneath. They are not keyhole limpets although they look very similar to them.

To help with some of the confusion, elephant slugs are also limpets.

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atxmandarin    0

well i guess thats something we can do tomorrow, slug collecting haha, id like to get a few of these guys to test and see what all they will eat

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Bry    7

They are scutus (elephant slugs). Yes they have the slit in their mantle on top that exposes the white shell underneath. They are not keyhole limpets although they look very similar to them.

To help with some of the confusion, elephant slugs are also limpets.

Wow, if I could get out to Elgin tomorrow I would take a few off your hands... assuming you just want to get 'em out still and give 'em away.

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+Hydro    44

I found these in my sump. I'm 99% sure they are munching on my coral, especially my monti frags. They seem to be sanded on top which is something that I haven't seen before. There is still color deeper in the coral, only the surface was effected. Also I know they are eating coraline algae. My aqua mag rocks look like someone is sanding them too...I pulled a limpet of one of the mag rocks today and there was a perfectly clean bright white spot underneath it. Again I think they are reef safe until the numbers get to high and the food is scarce. I got 20 of them out of my sump/frag tank today, 2 of them were were huge! They like to hang out together which is interesting, I will find them in packs of all sizes,,,,and sometimes alone.

post-1255-0-10447100-1302710574_thumb.jp

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Teresa    58

so is it only sps? Can I put one in my 2gal sea horse tank that has macro algae and a few zoas? The tank is nutrient high and has tons of diatoms (brown/green) growing on the live rock. Will it eat this? Actually, to be honest, I'm asking after the fact. I harvested one from my mixed coral tank already and put it in the two gallon. Was this a big mistake? BTW none of my sps look to be eaten and I still have a ton of coraline algae in the mixed coral tank.

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+Hydro    44

Sps and monti are what I suspect they are eating. Like I said above, I think that they are only a problem in great numbers. My guess is that when algae is available that is their first choice, maybe corals are second.

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Sherita    229

Please check your pm's, not sure if mine are getting through or not. Thx.

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+Hydro    44

Please check your pm's, not sure if mine are getting through or not. Thx.

:)

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