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FAQs about Sea Squirts Identification 2

Related Articles: Sea Squirts/Tunicates/Ascidians

Related FAQs:  Ascidian/Sea Squirt ID 1, Sea Squirt ID 3, Sea Squirt ID 4, Sea Squirt ID 5, Sea Squirt ID 6, Sea Squirt ID 7, Sea Squirt ID 8, & Ascidians 1, Ascidians 2, Ascidian Behavior, Ascidian Compatibility, Ascidian Selection, Ascidian Systems, Ascidian Feeding, Ascidian Disease, Ascidian Reproduction,           

Unidentified Underwater Object: Likely Ascidian -- 4/12/08 <Hi Joe!> You know, I am bound to find something that is unidentifiable even to the WWM crew. <Heheee! You may well have succeeded this time!> LOL. You guys have been fantastic and I find myself coming back yet again with an unknown critter that seems to have stumped me and most of my friends. It was speculated that it could be a jelly fish of some type <I can see why someone would say that. The pattern in the middle is very reminiscent of one!> ..but this guy is fixed on the LR and doesn't move... I attached the best pics I could, any ideas? <Well, to be honest, I'm fairly well stumped myself. My best guess is that it's some sort of Ascidian or sea squirt/tunicate - something similar to the Botryllus species at the following links: http://massbay.mit.edu/exoticspecies/exoticmaps/images/botrylluss_big.jpg  http://www.armofthesea.info/images/animalimgs/goldenstar_lg.jpg For more images, please enter 'Botryllus' in Google's Image search engine: http://images.google.com/imghp?hl=en&tab=wi  More information on Ascidians: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/ascidians.htm  > TIA Joe Brillon <Hope that's it! If not, let me/us know. Take care, -Lynn>

Re: Unidentified Underwater Object: Likely Ascidian - 4/15/08 <Hi Joe!> Well you thwarted my efforts once again to stump you and the crew over at WWM. <Heheee! I have to admit that you very nearly succeeded this time!> That is exactly it, <Yay!> many thanks again. Until next time where I will try again to leave you scratching your head. <LOL You're very welcome, I look forward to it!> Take care. Joe Brillon
<You too, Joe. Have a great week! --Lynn>

Likely so. RMF

Red Tube Hitcher 02/19/2008 Good afternoon! <<Hello, Andrew here>> I've noticed some strange red tubes among some Zoanthids today and I was wondering what they were. I figure they are some sort of filter feeder, but I'd like to know if they are harmful to my Zoas. These tubes shut and retract a bit if I touch them. I have attached a couple photos of them. There are more on that rock, too, but all seem to be connected to something in the base. Thank you for your time! Zoa« Stevens <<What you have there is a sea squirt, or otherwise known as an Ascidian. These are a harmless filter feeder and will not hurt your Zoas. More info can be found here and the linked articles and FAQ's. http://www.wetwebmedia.com/ascidians.htm >> <<Thanks for the question. A Nixon>>

Who you calling a squirt?

Identification 1... Tunicate  10/2/07 Dear Bob, <Hi Jason, Mich with you in the wee hours of the morning.> I found a couple of these guys in my wet/dry trickle filter. See attached picture. <I see.> They are definitely mobile and have skeletons <Mmm, not really. I know what you are seeing but it is not truly a skeleton.> but no idea if they are bad or good. <They are good. What you have is a tunicate. They are very neat creatures indeed! Some are extraordinarily beautiful. I saw and photographed many in the Bahamas.> They are not in my refugium or main tank so I'm not quite sure how or why they are in my wet/dry filter. <They are there because the conditions are favorable and there are no predators.> Thanks for all your help and making this hobby fun. <Welcome and thank you for your kind words. Is always good to hear from folks who are enjoying the hobby. Mich> Jason

Blurry photo... Maybe a tunicate?  10/2/07 Dear Bob, <Nope, Mich again.> I have quite a few of these red bubble entities around my live rocks. They have various tubular openings with what looks like red hair type worms that extend out from them. They don't seem to bother my fish or other inhabitants but I am curious as to what they might be. <I am having a difficult time making out the image in the photo. Does your camera have a macro setting? You might trying retaking the picture with the Macro turned on (the symbol often resembles a flower). This may be a tunicate as well, but I'm really not sure. A clear picture, may just clear the picture! ;) Thanks
<Welcome! Mich>


Strange growth on coral  10/11/07 Hi, I have a coral that is growing a strange tip on one side. Now I have string worms crawling on it too. What is it? Should I try to pry it off? It is getting bigger. <Wow, that is very strange. My best guess is some kind of parasitic barnacle or mollusk.> Also, I am finding more and more of these worms in my tank. Should I do something about them? <Remove the growth. Whatever it is, it doesn't look good.> Sammy
Sara M.>

You got yourself an Ascidian there mister. RMF

Crabs... and Ascidian, IDs  -- 08/02/07 Hey Crew. <Hey now! Mich here.> It's been a long time since I last wrote (about 3 days). <Heehee! That is a long time from this email address!> I have some crabs in my display about which I'm curious. Pics are attached. The first pic is just a cool, very big sea squirt that I have--just a cool pic, no question. <Neat!> The second pic is of a decorator crab (I think Schizophrys dama). <Likely so.> It is small (maybe 1/4" tall) and I think it's a really cool crab (watching him lumber about, etc.), but I also know your general feeling about crabs. As you can see, he has poached some polyps from my tree corals. I saw him molesting them tonight, although they didn't seem to mind too much. <Hopefully he's just fragging it and not noshing on it.> Anyway, question #1 is whether I should get him out of the display and, if so, <He's not "reef safe". whether I can put him in my 30g refugium (4-6" DSB with 4lbs live rock and Chaeto)? <Could.> Will it eat my pods/Chaeto? <I'm not sure. I'm not finding much on the diet of this particular species but most crabs are opportunistic omnivores.> I could put him in my 30g QT, but not much in there for him to do. <This may be a good option.> Third pic is of some type of filter feeding crab that I noticed tonight. Not a very good picture, but it definitely has sweeper arms that it uses to filter feed and you can clearly see its filters in the attached pic. It doesn't look like any Porcelain Crab I've ever seen (which is the only crab I found while researching that has similar feather-like appendages). So, question #2 is any idea what type of crab this is? <Is likely a Neopetrolisthes or Petrolisthes species.> Final question (no pic) is the suitability of what I think is a Mithrax forceps (Red-Ridged Clinging Crab). It came in on some live rock and I've been observing it for several months. It doesn't seem to molest anything other than the little bit of macroalgae that I had (notice past tense) in my display. <"Seem to molest" is likely an accurate description... Most crabs are opportunistic omnivores.> Muchas gracias.
<De Nada!>

Local Reef club couldn't give me an ID, hope you guys can. ID Question, need more details -- 4/13/07 Hello, <Hi Greg> I posted pics at my local reef aquarium club and nobody was able to id this mass. <Bring it on, I love a good challenge!> I picked out a rock to frag some Zoanthids and noticed this on the bottom of the rock. I am assuming a pistol shrimp had tunneled under the rock. The rock was sitting in the sandbed and I can't remember if it had space under it for flow. <Hmmm, that's what I'd like to know too! My first thought is that it's a colonial tunicate/sea squirt colony of some sort. It's not unusual for them to be in protected areas or overhangs, but underneath a rock like what you describe would seem to be pushing it. However, I suppose it might be possible if there was enough room under there and some degree of flow. What I'd like to do is get just a little more information, such as how large the mass actually is. It doesn't have to be exact I'm just trying to get an idea of scale. Also, are the tube-looking cells that make up the mass gelatinous, soft, rubbery, or hard? Finally, if you notice anything else, please let me know. Let's see if we can figure this thing out!> Thanks for your time, Greg... <You're very welcome, Greg. I look forward to hearing back from you! --Lynn> http://i113.photobucket.com/albums/n225/heysemo/100_0392.jpg http://i113.photobucket.com/albums/n225/heysemo/100_0391.jpg http://i113.photobucket.com/albums/n225/heysemo/100_0390.jpg
Re: Tunicate Id - 5/5/07 <Hello again! Lynn here.> You called it perfectly. <Yay! Thank you so much for letting us know.> I placed the rock higher in the tank to a position allowing me to see underneath the rock. It is a tunicate. It's obvious to me now after seeing it fully expanded and such. <I bet it's beautiful too!> Thanks for your opinion.. you guys nailed it.. <I'm so glad we could help, Greg.>

Grey disc with white circles... ID Tunicates (Clavelina robusta)   3/21/07 Hi, <Hello Allan, Mich here.> Please could you let me know what this grey disc shape thing is please (photo attached) <Looks like a colony of tunicates, I believe Clavelina robusta.> my tank has been set up for 4 weeks and I noticed this on the live rock about 2 weeks it was about 1cm across. It expands over a few days then sort of deflates and seems to spread or grow, but today it seems as if it's splitting into 2. any help good or bad please. Tunicate are a delightful addition.  More here:   http://www.wetwebmedia.com/ascidians.htm  > thanks
<Welcome!  -Mich>

Green Tunicates   3/8/07 I just read your article "Almost US!? Sea Squirts, Tunicates, Ascidians, Subphylum Urochordata, Phylum Chordata" on Wet Web media.  I was actually looking for a pic of some green growth I have in my tank, that people referred to as tunicates, and recommended your article. I am sure they are tunicates, but can you help identify what species? (See pic, attached). I got them on some Gulf of Mexico LR from my LFS. <I cannot identify these to species... perhaps a perusal of the popular works of Dan Gotshall, Alex Kerstitch...> Thought you might enjoy the picture to add to your "collection". Thanks for all your help! Best Regards, Marti DuGuay <Thank you for sharing. Bob Fenner, who has traveled and dived in Mexico's California for more than two years total time, but obviously (due to lack of pix, knowledge) has only (shades of Karen Carpenter) "only just begun".>

Tunicate Invasion  3/5/07 Hello: <Hi.> You have been very kind in the past in answering my questions and I hope you can help me with this one. Not long after I transferred my very healthy Dwarf Zebra Lionfish from to my 55 gallon display tank, I began to notice white specks on the glass and ornaments. They were accompanied by the things in the photos attached to this email. They look like some kind of parasite but they are not affecting the fish at all. They are though making my tank look terrible as you can see. I keep the water and gravel very clean and I also scrape the glass but these things return. The tank has been up for five years and I never saw these things UNTIL I put the Lion in there. What are they and how do I get rid of them? As always, any help is very much appreciated. Thank you for your time. <These are tunicates, are not directly harmful/parasitic at all. Please see WWM re: for more detail about them.  an overabundance may indicate an underlying nutrient issue though.> Robert Sabbia
<Adam J.>

Mmmm, no. Are Syconoid sponges. RMF

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