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FAQs about Marine Scavenger Selection: Sea Cucumbers

Related FAQs: Cuke Selection, Marine Scavengers 1, Marine Scavengers 2, Marine Scavengers 3, Sand Sifters, Sea CucumbersShrimp Gobies, Sifter Gobies Marine Algae EatersHermit Crabs, & FAQs on Scavenger: Rationale, CompatibilitySpecimen Selection, Clean Up "Crews"Worms As  Scavengers, Snail Scavengers, Shrimp Scavengers, Hermit Scavengers, Crab Scavengers, Sea Urchin Scavengers, Serpent Star Scavengers, Seastar Scavengers, Fish/Groups as Scavengers, Losses/Troubleshooting,

Related Articles: Marine Scavengers Genus Valenciennea GobiesHermit Crabs,  

Re: Silicone Mistake; now: sand sifter choices      5/1/18
Not sure how I missed it but I now see the reply you put to that reply.
There have been 0 issues with the tank despite my mistake (at least nothing
I can see). I'm currently working the nitrates in the tank (no ammonia no nitrites) and watching golden brown algae bloom/assuring my family it isn't poop.
<Aye ya; reads as all is progressing as it should>
I did have a question though (surprise surprise) about a possible substrate cleaner in the form of a tiger tail sea cucumber.
<Mmm; not a fan of this Cuke... gets too big, and though apparently slow metabolically; produces copious wastes. >
I need to get the nitrates under control first but I was considering one as a sand sifter in my tank (150 gallons) to deal with algae on the sand and detritus.
<Am a much bigger fan of other sand sifter groups... Please read here:
Sand sifting goby species, Goatfish if you want/need something bigger... are really neat animals, and very productive. Some snails (Nassarius a fave genus) are also useful>
However, I am very concerned about a "Cuke nuke" as it's apparently called... I read on your site that you believed it was less threatening with this species but that was years ago and my searches on your site yielded little information on this subject.
<Mmm; well, the "Sea Apples", Australian and not, and other larger species with a propensity to extend their Cuvierian Tubules are to be avoided. Not so much for this reason the Tiger Tail>
What fish are actually a threat to these cucumbers?
<Well; the usual suspects: big wrasses, puffers, angels... Triggerfishes and oblivious eels...>
Can the nuke a 150 gallon with a 55 gallon sump running 500 ml of carbon?
James Williams
<Bob Fenner>

Angler and Cuke   9/21/11
Hi all,
I was wondering if I would be able to keep a Cuke with an angler. I read in a post that a sea star, snails, and urchins may be fine, but I'm afraid if the angler gets froggy (pardon the pun) and attacks the Cuke, it would wipe them both out, and everything else in the tank. Please and thanks!
<Should be fine, GIVEN you choose a non-Cuvierian tubule species... BobF, out in Labasa where the beche de mer biz has about wiped out all Holothurians>
Re: Angler and Cuke   9/21/11

Mr. Fenner, I appreciate the quick response on both accounts! My lfs has many Cukes in the holding tank, how would I determine which would expel its innards from sight alone?
<Ahh, need to identify to species...>
The one I have my eye on is black and spiky and is a substrate cleaning type, rather than filterer. Once again, please and thanks!
<Do see/read on WWM re the group. BobF, out for deep diving/collecting>

R3: Fish Compatibility Question Actually 'And Conch Eggs Too? Plus 'Adding Detritivores (And overcoming The 'Creepiness' Factor) -- 04/19/10
Hmm wow. Yes, ha, (stammer, stutter) I have never handled one (or a sea cucumber) in fact - my knees get a little wobbly when I see them.
<<LOL! Not an uncommon reaction really 'and they likely don't enjoy it either 'but both are excellent detritivores and amazing creatures that are a joy to observe>>
But I guess - for the sake of my most passionate hobby....
<<Time to 'buck up!'>>
but first I will be purchasing some heavy duty protective gloves
<<So much for a tactile experience, eh'¦ [grin]>>
(and possibly smelling salts). Slow drip acclimation for the star
<<Indeed 'best for all mentioned previously>>
- I am not sure what kind of acclimation time for me.
<<Ah well 'perhaps an adult beverage or two will also be in order 'or maybe just as 'post trauma' therapy!>>
Wish me luck!
I will keep you posted.
<<Very good'¦ EricR>> 

Is My Purple LTA OK?/Macrodactyla doreensis/Health/Systems 1/29/10
<Hello Dani>
So I need to ask for some help... I bought this purple LTA on Saturday before doing any research (oops!). I have a 28gallon Nano cube cfi that has only been set up for about a month.
<Oops again. Too small a system for keeping this animal and much too new of a system.>
It looks like my lighting is 105w/8w cf quad;
<Borderline lighting at best for this anemone.>
115v-1ph-60hz and my pump is 16w/266gph.(this is off of the tank specs) I have 20lbs of live sand and about 30lbs of live rock. My friends living in the tank are 2 False Percula Clowns, 1 Peppermint Shrimp, 1 Fire Shrimp, 1 Serpent star, 1 sand sifting cucumber,
<Tank too new, too small to sustain the cucumber, problems may lie ahead.>
5 red leg and 5 blue leg hermits, 10 snails (2 kinds I can't recall the names), 2 small Zoas and a hammer coral.
<Oops again, too small a system for keeping an anemone with corals.>
My specs are: ammonia 0, nitrite 0, nitrate 0, ph 7.4 (working to raise by adding reef builder to bring up alkalinity) dKH 8 (on Sunday before lights out and after adding a dose of reef builder that day), sg 1.022, temp 81. I have been doing a 2 gallon water change once a week and I test parameters about every other day. (I am very paranoid about my water levels). Anyway, this anemone just sits in this spot and won't attach to anything and seems to have a gaping mouth.
<It will not attach to rocks, burrows into the sand in nature. This anemone will be short lived, I'd return if possible or risk poisoning your entire system.>
I tried to get the best pics I could and after I took them and was typing my email it shriveled up on one side. I am very worried that this fella is going to die and kill everyone in my tank.
<It will.>
I just wanted to know if you thought it would be OK or if I should pull it before he does too much damage?
<Will not be OK, I'd try and return.....good luck here. Should have researched this animal before buying, as to it's needs/system requirements.
A little late now, but do read here.
<You're welcome. James (Salty Dog)>

Re Is My Purple LTA OK?/Macrodactyla doreensis/Health/Systems, now Cuke comp. 1/30/10
Well now I'm a bit worried about my cucumber... I will have to do some research on them as this is what the guy at my LFS said would be ok for cleaning my tank. He is a very little fella. Maybe 3 inches long... Anyway thank you so much for your help!
<You're welcome. James (Salty Dog)>

Sea apple poisoning  11/22/09
I read what articles I could find about sea apple problems, but my question is different. Some time ago I started losing fish in my 120 gal tank. I checked for predator crabs, poor water parameters, parasites, etc. What I and my mentor settled on is sea apple poisoning.
My fish were dying, but everything else was fine, even my clam. I did a complete water change, rinsed my rocks, and started over doing frequent water changes.
<Mmm, might need to do more...>
Last week I started to restock after trying a couple new fish, bringing my fish number up to 12, adding some new corals and an anemone.
<Anemones are problematic thus placed with other Cnidarians>
my tank looked as good as it ever had for a few days, and then one morning I had 3 dead fish, and several more have died since in a 30 gal. tank. I had stirred a little sand the day before. Did I release more toxin from my sand?
<Maybe... but in all likelihood your previous cleaning was insufficient.
There may well be added complications of allelopathy twixt the new anemone and "corals">
I am going remove all my sand, clean my tank, start over and re-season my tank, but do you think that my rock is non-usable?
<Yes... with some chemical filtrant use...>
Perhaps I can soak my rock
separately and use later?
<Soak it in?>
Replacing 130 lbs of rock is not economically feasible at this time.
Thanks for your advice. Jeff G.
<Boyd's Chemipure, Poly-Bio-Marine's PolyFilter... See WWM re these, and consider moving out the Actinarian. Bob Fenner>

Re sea apple poisoning  11/22/09
Sorry...I neglected to mention that I removed my Cuke and apple earlier with no intentions of reintroducing them. Also, did you mean that with proper chemical filtrant my rock would be usable?
I also meant to add that my tank redo includes all new sand just in case.
I realize my cycle time will be increased, but better safe than sorry?....
<A useful and usually valid statement. You could thoroughly freshwater rinse, air-dry the present sand, use at some later point. Cheers, BobF>

Re: sea apple poisoning -- 11/22/09
Is it necessary to replace all my water, or just extensive cycling with good carbon and poly filter....and if so, how long should I cycle at 1200 gph before adding fish?
Thanks very much for the help!
<... I would run the system a week with the filtrants, try a few "test damsels" after for a week. RMF>

Re: Sea Cucumber Concerns 9/29/2009
Sorry about that! Here's the photo from Saturday from before he ejected it.
Try this...
<Nice pic>
Unfortunately the 50-gallon tank is my only saltwater at this time, but I am going to move fourth with plans now to convert a 20 so the damsels will be getting evicted Very soon. I needed to get those pests out anyway, even if they are cute.
I just hope they were his main source of issue.
Are these guys really that finicky to keep?
<... Please read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/seacukes.htm>
Thanks again for your helpful and non-judgmental help you always offer. I know I should have done more research before buying him (I'm no new fishkeeper), and some are quick to point out this flaw... which
of course helps me avail the situation none! There is always much to learn.
<Indeed... More for me every day. BobF>

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