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Chris's Fishes

Rose Pink Urchin Dietary Needs...

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Chris's Fishes

Hello!

 

I currently have a 10 gallon aquarium that has quite a bit of algae on the glass. It doesn't grow super quickly or anything - I simply don't often take the time to clean the side/back walls, because it doesn't bother me much. I have some algae growing on the bare bottom, and a very small amount growing on the rocks. Regardless, I don't see the algae as an issue, all I'm saying is that I have plentiful food for any grazer that I happen to have.

 

The other day, I was at my LFS looking for a tuxedo urchin. All the had was rose pink urchins, and they were all under 1" - after a quick google, I found that they're reef-safe, stay around 6" max, are only mildly venomous, and tend to keep their awesome coloration for their entire life. I picked the smallest one (he's about 1/2" from spines on one end to spines on the other), paid $4, and brought him home. 

 

So far, he's been great. As soon as he was acclimated, he started exploring the tank and sifting through debris on the tank floor. He disappeared into the rockwork for a few days, but tonight, he's been up on the side glass and powerhead DESTROYING a bunch of algae. I've spent the past 2 hours just watching him do his thing. Cool critter!

 

Here's my actual question: will the algae and mulm in my tank be enough to support this guy at his current size, or do I need to supplement his diet with seaweed or something? I'll be moving this tank into a 20 long within the next few weeks, so he's going to be in a larger tank relatively soon, but I want to make sure all of his dietary needs are met. I'd imagine he's got more than enough food, but I want to be sure. I've also seen a 30 gallon minimum recommended for these guys (which makes sense), but do you think he'll be okay to grow out in the 20 long for a year or two, with supplemental feedings? My room here at home is like 10'x10', so a 20 long is really the max tank size I can fit in here. I'll be getting an apartment my sophomore year of college, so that should allow me to upgrade to something a bit bigger, but that's still quite a ways away. Worst comes to worst, I can rehome him locally once he gets to be too big.

 

I personally think he'll be just fine - but I wanted to get input from anyone who knows more than I do. I've never kept an urchin before, and I couldn't find a ton of info about this particular species online, and didn't know if most info was the same across all species or not.

 

Thanks! 

 

Urchin.thumb.jpg.a0c18fb5e39c3948619ba1820e210f66.jpg

 

 

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