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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey everyone,

I just put a serpant star in my tank and 2 days later, I find his arms floating everywhere. I still cannot find the mouth/body of the star, but see arms everywhere, some of which are still moving...a little...

I have 3 large (1") emerald crabs. 2 red ones and 1 normal green.

--Have you guys seen red ones? It looks no different than the green ones, except the shell is light red/pink. NO, it is not coralline growth.

Others:

2-3 small (0.5") emeralds
10-15 assorted snails
5 small hermit crabs
1 blue eyed tang (gold body mostly with a scraping beak)


Do you think it is the tang or the large red emeralds???

Thanks in advance...
 

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I wouldn't think any of the creatures you listed would attack your serpent star unless he is really small; How big is the star? Also you should test your water to see if that's what caused him to die.
 

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i have never heard of a red emerald.. they are green, hence the name emerald.. but i'm no expert either.. but sounds like a different species to me.

knowing how big the star was might help though.

and i'd definitely do some water tests. if he died naturally, die to stress or water conditions, it's highly likely the crabs would have made use of his carcas, but i dont know about them attacking it while still alive. though i do have video of my emerald attacking, killing, and eating, a porcelain crab.
 

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Sumpless and Proud
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What type of acclimation process did you use? I know that starfish can be tricky to acclimate and will shed arms when stressed....not sure if the serpents/brittles fall into this category, but I think that they would. If you didn't have a slow acclimation of him, it may be that he suffered from some pH shock/salinity shock type event. This plays in with the parameters testing recommended by the others.

Jodi
 

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Ughhh.. Dinoflagelettes..
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Isn't it rule of thumb to stay away from red crabs, red eyed crabs, and crabs with serated pincers as they are predaroty... ???
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Hey guys,

Thanks for the reply. The serpant star was about 6-7 inches in diameter (with arms of course). The red emerald crabs look EXACTLY like the green ones, but they are pink/reddish in color. They don't seem to attack my coral banded shrimp mated pairs. I was told the serpant stars do not need a long acclimation and so the acclimation period is about 30 minutes for the star. There was no sign of rotting flesh on the arms I saw. They look like they were cut off like by dull scissor blades. What do you think?
 

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My understanding is that the emerald and the reddish version are both in the same group of Mithrax crabs. I have some of the reddish ones in my tank, that came in as hitch hikers on my Florida aquacultured live rock. I've been keeping an eye on them, and they do eat valonia and other macroalgaes like the emrald mithrax crabs. So far they haven't bothered anything else in my tank.
 

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Well I am afraid your LFS steered you wrong on the acclimation time frame! I acclimated my green brittle star for about three hours before putting it into my tank! I am almost certain that is what happened to your star.
Red emerald crabs! Interesting! They may be the problem as well as what was already stated!:)
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Well....I'll have to give her another try then...So three hours acclimation...let's make that 4 just to be sure then ay? Thanks for the tip MontanaRocknReefer. Any other ideas are always welcome and thanks ahead of time.
 

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do me a favor and test all your water parameters before adding one in, jsut in case you didnt already. just to be safe. :)
 

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StellaMN said:
What type of acclimation process did you use? I know that starfish can be tricky to acclimate and will shed arms when stressed....not sure if the serpents/brittles fall into this category
Jodi has hit the proverbial nail right on the head. Brittle stars are called this colloquial name for this very reason. If the Seastar survives, it will grow new rays to replace those that have proken off. Under some circumstances the arms may regrow into new specimens, but without a piece of the main body/mouth this is unlikely.

For most specimens of the phylum Echinodermata, acclimitization is everything.
 

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lazy reefer
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i have 3 emerald crabs and they all have bright orange patches on them i have seen pink ones at my local pet store and no i dont think they would go after it because i have a 5 with 30+ serpent stars and 2 emerald ceabs and noine of the stars are missing
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thanks guys and girls if there were any who responded.

I am a paranoid person when it comes to my reef tank so I check my tank parameters at least three times a week. Currently:

Ammonia: 0
Nitrite: 0
Nitrate-Nitrogen: 0
Low-Level Nitrate-Nitrogen: 0
Phosphates: 0 meg/L
Calcium: 432 meg/L
dKH/Alkalinity: 2.29/6.4 meg/L
pH: 8.2-8.3

Hope this helps everyone in decoding my odd problem.
 

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then i'd tend to agree with the acclimation
 
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