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FAQs about Non-Vertebrate Animal Identification 19

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Mmm, symmetrical, immotile... eggs of some sort...

Re: New growth... ID = snail eggs   1/12/06 Hello once again and once again, thanks for an awesome site. <Hi Randy, Mich here today.  Glad you like the site.> I have one question today. I have a growth that seems to have appeared almost over night and have no idea what it is. <Likely did appear overnight.> I have reduced the picture size in order to send it to you but when blown up, it shows a definite pattern and almost looks like eggs of some sort. <Yep.> Can you help me to identify this? <Looks like snail eggs to me.> I can send the pic in a larger size if needed. <No need.> Thanks again for your help,
Thanks again for your response. <Welcome!> Ok, so possibly sail eggs. If that's true, is that a good thing or bad? <It's all good!  Happy and healthy enough for reproduction!> Obviously I don't want 100 or 200 snails running around in the tank. <Understandable.> Haha! Should I just leave it or wipe them off. <Leave it there, will most likely be eaten by other critters in your tank.> Thanks again,
<Welcome Randy

What the H, E, Double Hockey Sticks is This?   1/8/07 Hi! I was wondering what this is. it is slightly green in color, very flat, no shell, <That you can make out> around 2 inches long and almost as wide. Movement is similar to a snail, almost looks like some sort of Nudibranch. Cannot see eyes, mouth, etc. It's kinda trippy, little freaky!  I have been having problems with margarita and Astrea snails dying, don't know why. I found this creature simply draped over 2 margarita snails in the sand at night, trying to get at them. I think it was feeding on them but not sure. Do you guys know what it is? <Mmm, is it very flat, wavy at the edges? If so, might be a flatworm of some sort... If not, possibly a sea slug of many possibilities...> It is certainly out of my tank! It took some effort to capture, but I was successful. It is currently in a cup with pinhole size holes in it, in a net, in the sump! LOL! I had it in a sealed cup with bigger holes (approx.1/4 inch in diameter). Damn thing escaped within 3 minutes! captured it again. I am gonna bring it to my LFS for identification tomorrow, but not sure if they can help. Attached to this e-mail is the best photo of it. Thank you! <Oh! Does appear to be a Platyhelminth to me. Bob Fenner>

Blobs = ? ...Stomatella Snails   1/8/07 Hi there, <Hello Lesley, Mich here.> Just discovered your website, I've learnt so much from the FAQ. Its really helpful. <This is good to hear.> I've got a couple of really odd blobs appeared in my 35 gallon marine aquarium. Its just over a year old, with fish and corals, but very little live rock. I have an external filter which seems to do the job. <Live rock would do a better job!> These blobs are pinkish white, with two antennae in their heads. They are about 1/2 inch long, and appear to have a small white hard shell on their backs which is much smaller than they. I do know that they love algae, they spend all their time on patches of algae either on the glass or on rock! <Sounds like Stomatella Snails.  See here:   http://images.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://www.reefland.com/rho/0305/images/stomatella.jpg&imgrefurl=http:// www.reefland.com/rho/0305/medprod3.php&h=300&w=400&sz=18&hl=en&start= 6&tbnid=mx9loS0E1H4E5M:&tbnh=93&tbnw=124&prev=/images%3Fq%3Dstomatella%2Bsnails%26svnum%3D10%26hl%3Den%26lr%3D%26safe%3Doff%26sa%3DG Therefore, I am assuming they are good, and won't do the fish or corals any harm. <If they are Stomatella Snails you are absolutely correct!> Regards Lesley
<Cheers -Mich>

Mystery Invertebrate... What Am I?   1/8/07 <Hey Jeff, JustinN with you tonight.> Another stumper, at least for me. <I'll see if I can't help shed some light> I first discovered this critter approximately 5 weeks ago. It is residing on the back glass of the tank, behind EVERYTHING. It is actually very difficult to see, it's a weird shot through the cave under my large frogspawn. I actually probably never would have seen it but for the fact that it is white, and as a diver, that is one of the colors I am trained to look for when spotting critters. <Ok> So one weird thing is that it hasn't moved much, if any, in those five weeks. <That may help towards identification purposes> It's in a spot that is early impossible to access without a complete break down of the tank. I mean it is WAY back there. So the first time I saw it I was like... "WTF?" but I had to get back to the hospital, so there was no time to investigate. I expected I would probably not see it again for some time. <Judging from the picture, my guess is a small Syconoid sponge. They are harmless, if not beneficial, filter feeders. I have several near identical creatures in both of my tanks as well, they don't seem to move other than to increase/decrease in size that I've seen.> My first guess was some sort of Nudibranch (a dorid, specifically) but the lack of movement makes me question that guess. A dorid moves around to eat. This dude hasn't moved. So, I have to lean more in the direction of some kind of sea cucumber or something similar that filter feeds, and the appendages at the bottom support that theory. <I thought the same thing as you when I first located them, due to the 'appendages'. However, shortly after I discovered them in my tank, I located this identification here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/spongeidfaq2.htm (the next to last response on the page) convincing me otherwise.> <<Interesting indeed... I would/do second the small Cuke theory possibility. RMF>> Anyhow, here's the photo I took tonight. Not great, but decent. I would love to know what everyone thinks. <Considering the previous description of the items location, your image is just fine.> What is this invertebrate? <See above. Hope this Thank you!

Howdy fellas  Encr. mar. invert. ID  1/5/07 <... and ladies> I have these black type things on my live rock, could you give me a positive ID on them?? I think its a specie of sponge but not sure Thanks Tim <Mmm, more resolution would help, but I do think you're right here... Likely sponges/Poriferans... or, second likely guess, Ascidians/Sea Squirts... could even be a Bryozoan... You can find pix of all these on WWM, the Net... All likely not harmful... in fact, indicatory of good conditions here. Bob Fenner

Unknown Sponge 12/29/06 <Hello Sue> Yesterday, I noticed this foamy white life form on the bottom of a piece of live rock that has been in my tank for six months now. I had never seen it before, but thought that it might be a form of sponge.  Today, while checking out my tank, I noticed that it had extended itself from beneath its rock onto a neighboring one in a more lighted area.  Furthermore, it appeared to have a spiral shaped appendage flapping from its side.  In less than three minutes, during the time that I went to get my camera, this life form had withdrawn to its shady area.  I was wondering if someone there could help me identify this life form and could help me know if it is dangerous.  I have not added anything new in my tank (with the exception of two emerald green crabs) for two months now.  At that time, I added five pounds of live rock that I had cured for a month.  Is it possible that this life form came in on that? <Yes, very possible.  The sponge in your photo appears to be a Clathrina type sponge, commonly known as the Leather Latticework Sponge.  They are a filter feeder that take in dissolved organic matter and do not require supplemental feeding.  They do not like bright light, generally growing on the undersides of live rock, and it is reef safe.> Thanks in advance for your help. <You're welcome.  James (Salty Dog)>
Sue in Houston

Inverts breeding in my FOWLR? (long...)   12/28/06 As with most of the posts I read here, I will start off by stating how immensely helpful your site has been for me: I have been in the marine hobby off and on for about 12 years (since I was 15) and have seen quite a lot in those few years. I apprenticed under Rick Oellers starting at 15 (former president of the now defunct AMDA) <Oh, yes> for four years while he operated "Wet Pets", <One of our old retail stores names in San Diego...> and later "Aquatic Concepts" located in southern Maine. While there, I was one of four people that hobbyists from all over New England would come to for solutions to their beginner through advanced questions. I always felt like there was so much for me to learn still, and was always amazed to meet people that felt a teen-aged kid in high-school ought to be advising them about their marine investments. <Mmm, quite a few of the folks that have been "Crew" were teenagers... I started in the trade even younger...> That said, I needed to take a break from the hobby for a while, but am now fully focused on re-living the passion I felt for marine ecology and its environment. Your website has so much info! <Mmm... am wondering bordering on hoping that you have time, interest, might join us in responding here> I find myself feeling quite the apprentice again, but greedily sucking up more and more info from this great resource you've assembled. I think I find some of the Q/A's from readers to be the most informative for me, since I can relate to some of their points of view. <Ahhh> I also can appreciate your point of view (often, that so many systems end in discouragement and disappointment because of a few guidelines being disregarded) of the knowledgeable mentor trying to guide without influencing the hobbyist. I reiterate: This site is a great place, and I hope to keep getting great use from it, and contributing by asking the right questions! <Thank you> Speaking of questions, I have enclosed a small picture of some little "attachments" on my glass. On close inspection, they seem to be either egg-packs or very small inverts. You can see a small number (4-9) of white dots in what could be a nucleus, surrounded by about 1mm of clear protective membrane. They measure about 1 or 2mm across. I have noticed some small (<.5mm) creatures scurrying on the glass surface that I assume could be, well anything, but I was thinking about copepods. > the appearance, I'd guess the first are some sort of snail/gastropod... The second... from the description of their motility... am thinking these are some sort of crustacean. Wouldn't narrow the possibility to the Copepoda though> Maybe these are related, maybe not. Today is one day after I took the pictures, and all of the attachments in question are gone. I'm not sure whether my snails grazed them overnight or if they have completed a life-stage in their cycle. I know the picture isn't as clear as it could be, but my camera auto-focuses and I consider myself talented with trying angles that I got what I did. What do you think they might be? Some info on the setup: 20g FOWLR single 18" Zoo-Med "Reef-Sun" bulb Penguin-Mini filter Fluval 404 w/ surface skimmer -- 10lbs LR 10lbs Base Rock 2-3" Live sand -- 78°F (± .4°F) Ph 8.2 Ca 420ppm No3 40ppm -- 1) 1.5" Niger Trigger 1) 1.5" Picasso Trigger 1) 2" Pearly Jawfish 1) 1" Green Clown Goby 2) 2" Turbo Snail 5?) Nassarius Snail 1) Blue-legged Hermit This tank serves as an intro for my fiancé so she can see what is involved, how much of my time is stolen, how noisy it is(n't), and how attractive the fish are. We moved on Thanksgiving day (happy holidays, BTW) into a house that had a run-down 20gal mounted into the kitchen wall. <Interesting...> No pumps or heater or lights, but the S.G. was at 30ppt dead-on, so I dug out my relics and started some filtration, heat and regular light after a 50% water change. A few days later, two three-stripe damsels showed their faces and made themselves available for return to the LFS. I got some more LR and added some of my old (dead) LR to bulk up on hiding places and waited to see if it needed to cycle. My next upgrade is going to be at least 75gal with PC lights for some mushrooms, polyps, etc. My Picasso and Niger will go to Rick or the LFS, and I will get the pink-tail I've always wanted. That's enough for now, wow! I meant to keep it short. Keep up the good work!!! Graham Tasker <Hope to be diving with you... and Melichthys vidua someday... soon... likely in HI. Do consider joining us... with WWM, if you have time, interest. Bob Fenner>

Tiny white dots what are they  12/23/06 <Greetings to you Angela, Mich with you today.> I<I> have a 50 gallon marine tank.  <I>inhabitants are: a royal Gramma, two ocellaris clowns (1 orange 1 black), two green clown/coral gobies, a yellow watchman goby, two fire shrimps and a variety of snails.  <T>tonight when I<I> looked closely at the tank I<I> notice a clump of white dots on one of my rocks (I<I> have no live rock in the tank) on close inspection I<I> discovered these tiny almost microscopic dots were moving I<I> assume they have legs as they are not swimming.  <T>they are on several of the rocks and on small patches of algae and the glass they do not appear to be harming the fish but I<I> am not sure what I<I> should do.  <W>what are these white dots?  <A>are they harmful for the fish or will they be safe if left in the tank? <P>please help thanks <Angela, without a photo it is impossible to say.  They could be a countless number of things.  Most likely these creatures are harmless hitchhikers that have found their way into your system. I would not be too concerned unless you observe behavioral changes in your fish.     Angela, <S>scotland <Angela, Please spell check, use proper punctuation, and employ standard rules of writing on any future queries.  -Mich>

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