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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I know this one is an on going subject for as long as there have been reef tank and mantis shrimp, but.......

I have 90# of Fiji rock that was purchased raw from Walt Smith. It has been three weeks now and the rock is just now fully cured, aquascaped (really turned out well) and ready to start adding critters (have a large order of snails and scarlet hermits due later this morning).

This morning when I turned the lights on to do the typical morning inspection I noticed three little critters about 3/8" - 1/2" long swimming around in the corner overflow. When I looked closer they looked very much like tiny lobsters with one claw. My first mental question was "gee...does Fiji have lobsters?" Thought they were more cold water. Second thought was "Oh oh.....Mantis?" It was hard to get a good look at them as when I hit them with the flash light beam they would hide in the corners or behind the overflows. They seem to have the flat blade tail like a lobster, medium brown body color, segregated body and swim by fanning with small legs on the abdomem. Each had one right hand claw that looked similar in shape to a lobster and held straight out, not folded. I will try and see if a digital photo is possible tonight when I get home.

Based on size, I am assuming that there where eggs in the rock that have hatched during the last three weeks. Up untill about a week ago Ammonia/Nitrite/Nitrate were off the chart during the curing cycling so they must be some pretty hardy little guys.

I did an internet search and found "The Lurkers Guide to Stomatapods". From the photos I saw, I can't seem to match these guys to any of the Mantis listed. Any other thoughtd, advice, info, experiance, etc etc....?
JJ
 

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Hey JJ-

Hmm...doesn't really sound like a mantis. Could be mysid shrimp? pistol shrimp? You are bound to have lot of good and bad critters in there. Any way to catch one of those guys and take a pic??

Glad you got your tank going~
Brooke
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Hi Brooke,
Tonight when I get home I'll try and catch one of the little guys. If they're still in the overflow I might be able to syphon one of the critters out and take a macro digital shot and post it..

FedEx just arrived an hour ago:
(50) Narrarius snails
(50) Cerith snails
(18) Red Leg hermit crabs (reef)
(1) Scarlet shrimp (bonus):D
JJ
 

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John if you catch it/them and one looks like a mantis let me know. I am looking for another mantis for an office tank :D. I am glad you are on your way

Jon
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Hi Brooke,
Did the online search and the only decent picture of a pistol shrimp I could find (Marine Depot Live) looks pretty close. Very lobster like appearance. Right claw looked slightly different in the pictures from what I saw this morning but at least the good news is more likely pistol than mantis!:D

Went home at noon and loaded the critters into the different tanks. Little guys seemed OK. So far so good and the good news is, all the guys listed above were $107 WITH shiping:dance:
JJ
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Nope, not him Dick,
These guys really do look like miniture lobsters with only one right claw. No quite ready for butter yet......
JJ
 

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JJ,
I just edited the previous post to add links to more Pistol Pics.
Dick:)
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Yup....Thats the picture I saw on Marine Depot's site. Except for a slightly different claw they looked a LOT like that (of course these are less than a 1/2" long so pretty young). If they ARE the right ones..... $18 a piece a MD Oh boy! Beats mantis shrimp!!!!
JJ

Thanks Brooke, I woudl have neve thought pistol shrimp if you hadn't mentioned them...
 

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There was a study done recently and although I unfortunately don't know a lot of the facts behind it, the study was designed to give evidence that pistol shrimps are often blamed for fish deaths caused by Stomatopods.
There was a significant amount of evidence to suggest this to be true and during the study a large Odontodactylus scyllarus was kept in a relatively small tank with a pair of clowns with no adverse results. Pistol shrimp kill fish with the sound they make with their claws when in close proximity to the fish. So be warned, a number of pistol shrimp may not be such a great 'bonus'.
 
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