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13 years old and learning
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332 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
i lost a sallylight foot and cleaner crab and i dont know how. i want to take out my live rock and wash it with freshwater to see if there r any unwanted hitchikers like bristleworms or a mantis shrimp or something. if i did this would my beneficial bacteria die and coralline algae die
 

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Crabs molt. Wait a week or so and see if they reappear. When crabs molt they go into hiding. Their molted crab shells can be deceiving. Are you sure they were whole crabs?
 

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Tampa Reefer
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453 Posts
Mantis shrimp are mean critters that can kill a lot of nice stuff, so I don't blame you for wanting to be sure there are none hiding in your rocks. But I think you'd see it if it was there and big enough to be a problem. You can wait to deal with it if and when you see it. Are the remains of your crabs piled up next to an obvious burrow?

As for bristle worms, hey everyone has them. Some people (like me) even like them! They do the same job as the "cleaning crew" hermits and snails. To my knowledge, they won't attack living creatures, so they can't be responsible for your lost crabs. They are admittedly ugly. If they get too big for your liking, snatch them at night. You can see them with a flashlight, and they'll come out to get any food source on the bottom.
 

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13 years old and learning
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332 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
all that was left of the shrimp was its molt and the crab was alive with only four legs(it was odd becuz they were symetrical) but it died within hours, also what about the rock
 

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Tampa Reefer
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453 Posts
From what limited experience I have with mantis shrimp (youtube! LOL) I think they strike hard and then drag their victim into their den. Doesn't sound like your situation exactly.

I dont know if a freshwater bath would kill your rock's bacteria and/or coraline, but I bet it would. Just like dosing any medication, I wouldn't try a cure until you know for sure what the problem is. You could kill your rock for no reason.

Try watching the tank tonight with no light but a red flashlight (stretch any red plastic over a little flashlight - last time I did this I used part of a bread bag) and see if you can spot anything you don't like in there. If you have a piece of shrimp or clam or whatnot, it might make good bait.
 

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Tampa Reefer
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453 Posts
Another thought: make yourself a fish trap out of plastic soda bottles (youtube!) and see if you catch anything overnight.
 
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