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Cleaner Shrimp Molt - Frequency?


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Quick question as internet research has resulted in contradictory results...

My cleaner shrimp is molting, a lot. About every 7 to 10 days. He seems fine other than that, he loves the watchman and cleans him regularly. Water parameters are great (exact measurements can be posted later if necessary)...have skimmer, hob, fluval, temp steady at 77. Feeding every other day (half a cube of mysis). Other inhabitants: a couple of tiny clowns, watchman, firefish, small pink sea urchin, 4 assorted snails. Some coral - very happy. Doing regular water changes.

Would love to hear your thoughts.


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The molting frequency will depend on your iodine concentration, iodine dosing frequency, and the size of your inverts. You should expect a fair amount of molting from small size to adult size, but once they're full grown they may molt half as frequently. I dose my iodine every 7-10 days and I probably see anywhere from 1-2 molts per month. I was seeing a sure 2, maybe sometimes 3, per month when they were small and still growing in size, though.

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I'm seeing similar results to Crab Rangoon. When I first got the skunk cleaner he molted about 2-3 times a month. He's been in the tank for a little less than a year and I see him molt on average once a month. It will all depend how young they are, how fast they are growing and the Iodine as well as Calcium concentrations in the tank.

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Regardless of how many times it happens, everytime I wake up and see a molt half sticking out of my powerhead, I freak out thinking my K4 just claimed my cleaner shrimp!

hahahaha me too!.....i'm always like: there's an eye or something in that molt, it can't just be the molt. Then the shrimp comes out looking for food.laugh.gif

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