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FAQs on Identification of Stinging-Celled Animals 2

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Related FAQs: Cnidarian IDs 1, Cnidarian IDs 3, Cnidarian IDs 4, Cnidarians ID 5, Cnidarians ID 6, Cnidarian ID 7, Cnidarian ID 8, Cnidarian ID 9, Cnidarian ID 10, Cnidarian ID 11, Cnidarian ID 12, Cnidarian ID 13, Cnidarian ID 14, Cnidarian ID 15, Cnidarian ID 16, Cnidarian ID 17, Cnidarian ID 18, Cnidarian ID 19, Cnidarian ID 20, Cnidarian ID 21, Cnidarian ID 22, Cnidarian ID 23, Cnidarian ID 24, Cnidarian ID 26, Cnidarian ID 27, Cnidarian ID 28, Cnidarian ID 29, Cnidarian ID 30, Cnidarian ID 31, & Anemone ID 1, Aiptasia ID 1, Stony Coral ID 1, Mushroom Identification, Soft Coral ID, Alcyoniid ID, Xeniid ID,

Yellow polyp not opening Hey guys, <Cheers> It's 8:30 am in Montreal and the weather is cold. Sometimes I wonder why we all live here!!  <I have traveled places like that myself... Arizona in August... Boston in January... why, why, why are human beings habitating there. Moreover... how?!?!> Well... my question in straightforward, my yellow polyp which I bought two weeks ago is not opening up. I searched your site and could not pinpoint the problem.  <The first problem here is that we cannot know what coral specifically you are talking about (common names mean little). By yellow polyps do you mean Parazoanthus, Tubastrea, A Sarcophyton, etc.?> He was opened at the LFS under power compact light. All my parameters are within normal range, except calcium which is 260. <Do water changes to get your Calcium and Alkalinity more even keeled (probably high from mis-dosing supplements). Read here too, brah: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/calcalkmar.htm > I do have 175 MH lights. The polyp is placed midrange, with moderate to heavy flow and moderate lighting.  <I'm thinking/fearing, hearing a lack of QT for this new coral here. Sigh. It may explain light shock if any... or illness from infection or disease pending and possibly at risk of infecting your display, etc. You may learn a very hard lesson mate. I do hope not. Yet you need(!) to understand and apply strict quarantine habits for all new livestock if you will be a conscientious aquarist> I've been feeding him Marine Snow every second day and I just started feeding him Mysis shrimp. I went to my LFS and he said that usually these pacific type polyps like lower levels of light, so now he's at the bottom of the tank. Oh yeah, one other thing, he's not attached to any type of sponge but rather just live rock. Any thoughts, should I let it be or should I be worried? Nilesh <Do send a scientific name and/or pic for us to be clear here. Kindly, Anthony>   

Yellow polyps Hi. my name is Luke and I have a question on the polyps I recently purchased. They have turned a brownish color and I and they sometimes swell up  with water. I saw one today that had its mouth completely open to where you  could see inside it. I have been feeding them 1-2 times a week with fine grated  raw frozen shrimp or enriched brine I have about 205 watts of lighting over them but no white bumps that would indicate light burn. There were a few that were kinda black and didn't open but is the swelling up with water a good or bad thing. Some  are yellowish brown some are a lot darker brown and do  not open all the way any help would be great thanks in advance.  Luke <Luke... these look like Aiptasia to me... pest anemones. Please see WWM re. Bob Fenner>

Re: Yellow polyps ID Negative Bob they are not Aiptasia I know what those are. They  were yellow when I bought them I don't know why they would turn brown and my LFS  owner has been in the marine trade for about 30 years and his tanks have no  Aiptasia in them. Hmmm so Im not to sure whats going on with them but I don't  really have the worlds best lighting so maybe that's  it? <Appears to be... Mmm, my next guess is some sort of zoanthid... Would you be able to send a better pic, close-up of one of these polyps? Bob Fenner>
Gorgonian Identification Hi, <Hi Kevin, MacL here with you today.> You seem to know a lot about gorgonians, so I was wondering what type this is, it came on a purple gorgonian that I bought. <Without the polyps being extended its very hard to tell Kevin. Can you get an additional picture with them out?> How much do you thing this little frag would go for? <That's a tough question because price fluctuates depending on the area.> thank you,

Mystery Coral ID - Can't Quite, Despite Detailed Description 4/12/05 I do hope that my grammar and sentence structure and whatnot was clear enough to make sense. I apologize if it is difficult to read; I'm ADHD as all Hades, and the complexity of trying to describe my mystery coral was boggling to even my language-oriented mind.  <Ha! Boy did you get the right guy! No worries, despite my own ADHD, I will work through.<g>> Hi. First of all I'd like to thank you for your site and all you do to help out the hobby. <It truly is a labor of love.> I'm new to reef-keeping, though it is by far the most satisfying thing I have ever done. I seem to have an affinity for reef-aquariums; they do very well for me, and my intuition has generally solved more of the challenges that have arisen than research--but research is a love of mine regardless, and when I have needed information to fuel my intuitive leaps, this website has proven to be largely the only reliable source. So again, thank you. <Thanks for the kind words. We work hard to provide reliable basic info, not chase the latest trends. Glad you have benefited!> Now, on to my question...I have a habit of "buying" (mostly being flat-out given for free along with some other purchase I'm making) little tiny frags and single polyps etc. that I notice neglected on the bottom of my LFS's aquariums after new shipments and whatnot. These things are generally "probably just going to die anyhow," and are not really paid much attention to. I love this, though; my favourite thing about this hobby is how things grow, and out of every unappreciated, overlooked probably-just-going-to-die-anyhow piece or polyp I've gotten since I started this, I've only had two deaths.  <Kudos on having the conscience and patience to take this approach! It sure is great to watch these things grow and to see a whole colony that you grew from a single polyp!> Up until the other day, these treasures I've collected consisted of various corallimorpharians, zoanthideans, a few SPS fraglets (more like tiplets), and one sad Caulastrea polyp broken off from his colony. The greatest thing about these is that some of these guys the LFS had just abandoned to neglect have blossomed, with a little care and special attention, into some gloriously coloured treasures. After the first creamy-brown Ricordea-polyp-piece (torn in shipping) I bought b/c of a slight indigo glimmer turned into a lavender, indigo and baby-blue polyp almost two inches across, I've kept my eye out for things that seem promising in potential. About a week ago I noticed something that appeared at first glance to be a teensy mushroom-polyp of the sort I've been collecting--kind of a half-torn, half-struggling-to-be-a-polyp piece of flesh about a centimeter across. It is anything but, however, and this is why I'm writing you guys, for I have looked and looked and looked and cannot find anything conclusive to give me more than a hint at identification. Now, please bear with me; my boyfriend has lost his connect-to-computer cable for his digital camera, so I have to try to describe this in words.  <ID's WITH pictures are a challenge, let alone without, but let's give it a shot...> In colour it was a slightly fluorescent pale pink with a slight greenish shimmer that I've learned to look for in my colour-potential hunting. It didn't seem quite like a Corallimorph though, so I looked much closer and thought perhaps it was a leather coral of some sort. At any rate, it had all the signs for colour-potential, and I don't have any Sarcophytons or other shroomish/lobish leathers yet due to the drab colour of those offered for sale at my LFS, so I bough it--for a dollar, since it was attached to a piece of rubble almost smaller than it was, and my dealer doubted it would survive.  <Although color is almost useless for coming up with an ID, it can serve to rule out ID's. In this case, it makes any "Leather" (Sarcophyton, Lobophyton or Sinularia) very unlikely.> Once established in my first aquarium--a thirty gallon long which has one actinic 20-watt fluorescent, one half actinic/half tricolour 6500K 17 watt fluorescent, one 95-watt power compact fluorescent with a half 10,000K/half 7100K bulb and direct sun for approximately five hours each day (I have found that the sun is beneficial to my SPS corals, despite the algal growth), a protein skimmer and very high alternating current with a deep sand bed--it opened up to nearly an inch in diameter and it was obviously not a shroom polyp, and did not seem to be a Sarcophyton. Now it is a little over an inch in diameter when fully open, and it is a lovely lavender-pink underneath an intense blue-green shimmer. It has a small stalk, which is often nearly impossible to see, topped with a mushroom-like disc. This is where things first become so confusing. When I say mushroom-like disc, I mean that in the fungal sense; not in reference to coral morphology I have seen. It is always either completely flat, or slightly dome-shaped; i.e. with the edge turned downwards ever-so-slightly. It never turns its edge upwards at all. The center it either level with the edges or slightly higher; never depressed at all. When it "closes," it wrinkles inwards, in a fashion most reminiscent of certain LPS corals, like Trachyphyllia. (sp?) <<Trachyphyllia>>  The disc is not a single polyp; the polyps are arranged only at the edges. I'll return to that in a moment. but it rules out the corallimorphs. The disc and stalk seem almost more like an LPS than any soft coral I have seen. When it is "closed," a more accurate description is "not expanded." It wrinkles inwards, with the wrinkles being parallel to the edges, but there is a slight ribbing that is evident structurally underneath the flesh when this occurs, just as when an open brain is closing, and the skeletal structure becomes more evident. The top of the disc is perfectly smooth; there is upon VERY close examination a slight speckling/dotted appearance, but this is within the flesh, like pigmentation just below the surface in a translucent flesh; not indicative of any sort of polyps as on a Sarcophyton.  Visible more when it is fully expanded (once again, as in some LPS corals, the flesh is slightly translucent when expanded--the aforementioned dots of pigment are not visible when it contracts; it appears then to be an opaque pearlescent aquamarine) are what seem almost like ridges or teeth of skeleton (they appear more skeletal than spicule-like, but I mention that for description; not as a conclusion) in, once again, an LPS coral. The stalk also has this appearance, when it is visible--though that is rare. The ribbing evident in the flesh is along these. It is as though when it contracts, the flesh is drawn both down upon these ridges that extend outward form the center, spoke-like, and drawn towards the center, thus wrinkling up. I hope that makes sense. This ribbing is also evident structurally along the edges, in the arrangement of the polyps--whether fully expanded or not. The edge is dotted with evenly-spaced holes from which polyps emerge. These are arranged in an alternating fashion -- nununununununununu -- something like that, if you can pretend the n is an upside-down "u". The "n" part is from the ribs that are visible when the disc contracts--the apex of the "n" is where the ribbing encounters the edge. The "u" part is identical, except reversed, and more than being simply between the ribs/ridges like valleys, it is arranged more as though there is an alternating set of ribbing/ridges under the disc. Were I to guess at its internal structure, I would say there something like a skeleton arranged like so: /\/\/\/\/\/\ along the edges, radiating outwards from the centre something like a starburst. (Geez, I really hope this makes sense...I'm so sorry for the lack of photograph, guys.) The polyps are the other thing that really throws me, structurally. They are found only along the rim of the disc, pointing slightly downwards and outward. They seem to be octocorallians; they are pinnate, with eight tentacles per polyp. When fully extended, each polyp is no more than a millimetre in diametre, with the tentacles being 1-1.5 millimetres in length. They pale pinkish-white in colour, and translucent.  When fully withdrawn, all you can see are the holes from which they came--yet these are quite obvious structurally, as explained within the previous paragraph. I really wish I could explain better, but ultimately, even though I know this coral has probably got quite a bit of growing to do, it seems as though the structure is arranged so that the polyps will continue to be exclusively along the rim of the disc. The polyps seem to indicate that it is a soft coral, yet everything else about it is far more reminiscent of a scleractinian coral. So I am at a loss as to its identification...Given that it is very small and will probably grow and I can't show you a photo, I still hope that this description is enough to help me identify it a little more conclusively than "mystery coral." I really want to know; not only is curiosity my total slave driver, I'd also like to know what sort of care it needs. I assume from the polyps that it is a largely planktonic feeder, and from the colours that it has developed it seems to like my lighting.  It is fine in the high current; it does not deter its expansion whatsoever, and in fact seems to encourage it...but I'd like to know, because assumption can lead to disaster, and I've already fallen in love with the little guy. Any help at all would be appreciated more than I can express; even if it is no more than speculation. Thank you so much! --Peter C. D. Gott  <I am sorry to say that despite that dizzying description, I can't even venture a guess. A photo is really necessary here. Best Regards. AdamC.>

Mystery Coral Part 2 4/15/05 Dear AdamC (or whomever else may be reading this), Thank you for taking the time to try; very much. It helps a great deal, if nothing else, that you think it unlikely to be a leather. Narrowing things down is more progress than no clue whatsoever. 8} My Dad is going to try to get a picture of it for me, though his schedule is very hectic; we're more likely to get a new USB cable first...at any rate, I'll be in touch as soon as I get one. Thanks again!  --Peter  <I will look forward to the picture, but in the mean time, do consider seeking out a local Marine Aquarium Society. There are many benefits, not the least of which is that a couple of more seasoned reef aquarists will probably be willing to come take a look and ID your critter. Best Regards. AdamC.>  

Unknown polyps on live rock I bought Hi Bob.  I bought some live rock for a 55g tank I was setting up last Thursday.  The store owner told me it came out of one of his customer's tanks that had been set up for over 4 years, so it was well cured rock with feather dusters, zoanthids, etc.  At the price, I couldn't pass it up.  But while I was looking at it in the store, I saw something on it that looked like Aiptasia.  The owner assured me it wasn't Aiptasia.... it was some type of polyp he had never seen before, but said it had always been there and never caused harm in the other guy's tank, so he assured me it was okay. Once I got it home and into my tank, and got some lights on it... the color started to show.  The center is a nice green, and the tentacles are dark red or light red, depending on how much light it's getting.   They don't close up at night like zoanthids do... they seem to just be stuck open.  When I fed them some Cyclop-eeze, they didn't retract into the stalk like zoanthids do, either.... they just folded in half, or folded one side over at a time onto the mouth. So I'm at a loss as to what these things are, and was hoping you could identify them.  The picture is at http://www.baneverything.org/pictures/aquarium/oddpolyps4.jpg  The picture really doesn't do them justice, as I can't figure out what to set my camera's white balance at to really show off the green centers.   Hopefully it's good enough for you to get the idea of what I'm talking about. Thanks in advance Steven Duckworth <Mmm, look like Anemonia to me. Please see here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/anemoniafaqs.htm Bob Fenner, who had some old friends with your family name. Joe Duckworth and his son Wade, here in San Diego>

Coral Identity Hello Wet Web Crew, <Evening> Are any of you able to identify this coral? <Mmm, looks like an Amplexidiscus to me: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/corallim.htm > I purchased it from a local LFS and they said it was a mushroom. I asked many question, like will it eat my fish or any other invertebrates? <Maybe> Will it move around my aquarium (I know that anemones do this and coral usually don't but I wanted to make sure)? Do I need to target feed it? Is there anything special I need to know about? The answers were no on all accounts. "It will be fine in your aquarium." Once home I decided to double check on placement of this coral so I did some internet research. I was not liking the info I was finding so I took a picture and took the picture to another LFS for clarification. Needless to say they were not able to identify this particular specimen. Can you help with it's identity?  Thanks, Karen <Go to the cited link... look above at the other links... read them. Bob Fenner> 

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