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Worst pest you can have in your Reef Tank. Vermetid Snails!

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jservedio
On 7/25/2021 at 6:15 AM, Murphych said:

I have a dusky wrasse that picks at them but won't eradicate. I wouldn't bother with them. Population will rise and fall but never had any issues with them irritating coral at all. 

My Melanurus wasn't big enough to get through the tubes, but he would follow me around while I crushed tubes with a pair of needle nose pliers and slurp the snail out as soon as soon as any of it was exposed.

13 hours ago, Tired said:

Vermetids are usually an annoyance at worst. In a tank with plenty of other life, like a tank set up with ocean rock, you shouldn't have to worry about them. Manually removing some of them won't hurt, but don't worry about it- just pull off any individuals that bother a coral. 

Definitely only a minor annoyance. I've yet to see one actually cause my corals any problems and I have a LOT of them of all sizes.

 

They are absolutely not a panic and break down your tank type of pest. Here's how montipora and acropora deal with vermetids in their way. The first picture is acros covering up a field of vermetids while basing out.  You can see some vermetids are totally covered and dead and some are still hanging on, but just barely and not for long. In the second, you can't see a single vermetid popping through the confusa, but it has probably 20-30 ex-vermetids underneath it and you can see the digi, which has been in the tank for less time has mostly covered tons of vermetids, completed covered others, and I would bet in the next year there won't be a single vermetid alive under that monti. Your corals can handle them just fine if you give them time and they are actually healthy.

 

acro-vermetid.thumb.jpg.25b64fac0d1aeb18379cd38cb4cff5f2.jpg

 

 

vermetid-monti.thumb.jpg.88c0c396ff082123c7582fe477a7f7ad.jpg

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Tired
On 7/25/2021 at 10:08 PM, Micro-Reefs Aquariums said:

Thanks I will keep that in mind.  The rock was blessed with all of God's creatures in there I am amazed what live rock from the ocean has to offer reefers like you and I.  Check out the crab that came off the live rock and hitch a ride on my new conch snail.

 

Aw, he's cute! I like his little eyes. Hopefully he's something that'll stay small. Keep an eye on him, and try to get an ID if he grows much. Crabs are opportunists, so ones with the physical ability to subdue a given organism generally can't be trusted not to eat that organism.

 

Barring the occasional super unlucky case, the good stuff that comes in on live rock far outweighs the bad. There's no other way to get nearly that much biodiversity, and biodiversity is a big help to a stable reef tank. Plus, unless you underfeed the tank really badly, all that biodiversity practically guarantees you'll never have problems with the actual worst pest in reef tanks- dinos. Dinoflagellates thrive in new systems without many nutrients or any competition, and live rock is loaded with competition. 

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Rockstarx3x

I've had these before (10 years ago), but NOW! I'm not sure if it's because I started with dry rock, or what, but they not only are bothering my corals (all of them), it's killing them. And yes, dealing with a huge infestation as apposed to years ago, there would be just a few

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Rockstarx3x
On 7/26/2021 at 11:58 AM, jservedio said:

My Melanurus wasn't big enough to get through the tubes, but he would follow me around while I crushed tubes with a pair of needle nose pliers and slurp the snail out as soon as soon as any of it was exposed.

Definitely only a minor annoyance. I've yet to see one actually cause my corals any problems and I have a LOT of them of all sizes.

 

They are absolutely not a panic and break down your tank type of pest. Here's how montipora and acropora deal with vermetids in their way. The first picture is acros covering up a field of vermetids while basing out.  You can see some vermetids are totally covered and dead and some are still hanging on, but just barely and not for long. In the second, you can't see a single vermetid popping through the confusa, but it has probably 20-30 ex-vermetids underneath it and you can see the digi, which has been in the tank for less time has mostly covered tons of vermetids, completed covered others, and I would bet in the next year there won't be a single vermetid alive under that monti. Your corals can handle them just fine if you give them time and they are actually healthy.

 

acro-vermetid.thumb.jpg.25b64fac0d1aeb18379cd38cb4cff5f2.jpg

 

 

vermetid-monti.thumb.jpg.88c0c396ff082123c7582fe477a7f7ad.jpg

Yes, but do you have softies? I can see where the corals can out compete for nutrients, but can LPS and Zoas or leathers compete in the same way?

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Tired

Leathers and LPS are pretty solid nutrient hogs, as are decent-sized zoa clumps. 

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jservedio
12 hours ago, Rockstarx3x said:

Yes, but do you have softies? I can see where the corals can out compete for nutrients, but can LPS and Zoas or leathers compete in the same way?

Yep! I would say LPS are the slowest/worst at battling them, but I have a large favia and a large blasto that both have out competed vermetids and grown right over them incorporating the shell into their skeleton. Zoas and Palys are awesome at competing with vermetids because they have interlocking polyps that prevent the vermetids from catching anything with their net. Basically, the zoas just grow mat all around and on the tube and their polyps prevent the snail from deploying it's net. If it's a tiny polyp zoa, just crush or break any tubes so that the zoas are taller. Leathers don't even really need to compete - my toadstool has no interaction with them at all and anemones easily out compete them and sting or smother them.

 

I'll try and grab pictures of both LPS and palys steamrolling vermetids. Many of my LPS have been living with and competing against vermetids for the better part of a decade - many of my LPS have been with me for a very, very long time (2010-2012) and my vermetids came on my live rock when I set up my 20g back in 2010.

 

Edit: Here's some pictures of both LPS and softies dealing with vermetids. This isn't either of the LPS I was originally talking about above, but here is one of my echinatas swallowing up a vermetid with just the last little bit showing. This echinata has been entombing vermetids for more than 8 years now. And here is also a picture of palys dealing with a few vermetids. Sorry the picture isn't great, but I'm shooting up under the colony so I have to use flash through the glass, but you can see two vermetids being smothered by the colony and a couple others that aren't long for this world.

 

vermetid-echinata.thumb.jpg.8404ee071c8485babc11bddf2c24fa79.jpg

 

 

paly-vermetid.thumb.jpg.2a41742be6216187b6a53837faf71bbc.jpg

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