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  1. I can't believe how lucky I am. After the death of my G. platysoma, Morpheus, I was 110% convinced I'd never get a chance to keep another mantis anytime soon and my 10G chugged along at a dull pace with routine feeding of my two leftover fish. Today I walked into my LFS to pick up some dry items, when I spotted a lone mantis shrimp on sale. It was listed as a Peacock mantis shrimp, but judging by the markings, I knew it was something different. I initially suspected this shrimp to be a G. chiragra. It was very difficult to tell what type it was at the store, especially with the dim lighting, but I sexed it as female, and well, I brought her home with me immediately. 1. Here she was, at the store this morning: 2. She has this strong golden-orange carapace and a very bright red telson. I couldn't see much at the store and I didn't realize she was different until I brought her home. 3. I spent over an hour on Roy's website to find a match, but she didn't link up to any of the smashers on there. I kept her isolate in a mini plastic tank within the 10G so that she could get used to her surroundings, and my present fish could get used to her. It was only when I went to feed the fish, I took a closer look and ta-da! She doesn't have smashers - but spearers! Holy pretzel - I've owned 3 smasher-type mantises before, but spearers were a different league entirely. 4. I immediately knew I had to switch tactics. My concept for this tank was originally 'sticks and weeds' a.k.a. SPS and macroalgae under a PAR 38 LED or AI Prime (to come). I originally wanted to retain both my clownfish and hawkfish in this tank, but that's not possible with a 3"+ spearer mantis. Plus, I needed to thicken my sandbed, or throw in some small PVC piping under the LR as a substitute burrow. (Lesson learnt: Always check 'type' of mantis shrimp, before bringing home said mantis shrimp). Now came the hardest part - IDing her! I went online and nothing matched her markings (exactly), except this one photography website that had a similar pic, but with wrong labelling as a 'Hemisquilla ensigera californiensis'. <---This mantis looks completely different from the one that I have, but I kept googling. The closest I could find is Pseudosquillopsis marmorata. Given the strange 'bilobed' eye markings which match this species, and the body-pattern-match, I'd say this is most likely it. On the off-chance that it isn't a P. marmorata, then it might be a color-variant of the more common P. ciliata (rainbow mantis shrimp), which is more commonly found throughout the ocean. My LFS shipment this week was a mix of Indo-Pacific and Red Sea, so I'm not sure where exactly my mantis shrimp came from. Anyhow, here's a new thread and new build committed to keeping this new critter alive and sated under my care. There's very little info on keeping spearer mantis shrimps in reef tanks, and even fewer threads on them (I couldn't find any non-P. ciliata/Lysiosquilla sp. ones). Whatever it is, I'm beyond happy and proud to have her. I named her Zephyra, due to her 'skin' tone. P.S. I'm moving both my fish out to a larger (and safer system). The only critter I'm keeping with the mantis will be a tuxedo urchin for now. In the meantime, I'll be stocking up on various types of macro (Caulerpa sp. mostly) and let it grow out in the tank. I'll probably give the mantis feeder mollies as a food source every now and then, and otherwise placate it with frozen shrimp. P.P.S. She's a mean b*tch. Tough as nails, with a KA-POW 'I-will-kill-you' stare. You should have seen her backflip out of the net at the LFS (several times!) when one of the workers was trying to catch her. I think this is going to be my feistiest mantis yet!
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