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Thread: Hitchhiker star ID?

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    Curious Reefer jdjeff58's Avatar
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    Hitchhiker star ID?

    I have positively ID'd a whole slew of asterinas in my tank....no bigger than 1/4" average. But tonight, this one popped up on my overflow. He's about the size of a nickel. Is this the mother ship? Is it adviseable to remove it? Any help would be appreciated.




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    Grand Master Reefer JustDavidP's Avatar
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    Why remove it? I strive for diversity. Yeah, there are some that say that there are varieties of these stars that will eat corals... blah blah.. statistically, there are more that do not and help graze and keep our systems clean.

    Have you seen any coral damage? If no, then leave it be... or Mail the bugga to me.

    Dave
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    Curious Reefer jdjeff58's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JustDavidP View Post
    Why remove it? I strive for diversity. Yeah, there are some that say that there are varieties of these stars that will eat corals... blah blah.. statistically, there are more that do not and help graze and keep our systems clean.

    Have you seen any coral damage? If no, then leave it be... or Mail the bugga to me.

    Dave
    No coral damage yet. The asterina numbers have gotten pretty big over the past several weeks. Where this guy came from I don't know. I got a little panicky with the asterinas, but then read some stuff about them not necessarily harming corals. This guy I'm not too sure about as I've read similar articles about the larger ones.

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    Grand Master Reefer JustDavidP's Avatar
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    opportunity knocks... "numbers have gotten pretty big". How big?

    I'd say that they are growing in numbers because they can. No predators and sufficient food source(s). So, either we need to learn more about what they need to survive, and see if you're overfeeding the system or whatnot... OR.. Maybe that predator route. Ever seen a pretty harlequin shrimp?

    Only problem there is that when (not if) the shrimp wipes out the stars, you'd have to supplement. This means buying other starfish for the shrimp to eat. Otherwise, you'd have to find a new home for the shrimp.

    Dave
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    Curious Reefer jdjeff58's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JustDavidP View Post
    opportunity knocks... "numbers have gotten pretty big". How big?

    I'd say that they are growing in numbers because they can. No predators and sufficient food source(s). So, either we need to learn more about what they need to survive, and see if you're overfeeding the system or whatnot... OR.. Maybe that predator route. Ever seen a pretty harlequin shrimp?

    Only problem there is that when (not if) the shrimp wipes out the stars, you'd have to supplement. This means buying other starfish for the shrimp to eat. Otherwise, you'd have to find a new home for the shrimp.

    Dave
    Well...I'd say there's 50-100 in my 120. I never really tried to count them out. But they are definitely all over my rock and have recently been making it to the glass (3 or 4). But it's pretty obvious that they are multiplying.

    I looked into the Har. shrimp and thought about that. I went to check one out at my LFS. But they weren't so sure about him grazing on asterinas. And I wasn't too sure about buying him a starfish every week.

    I was sort of just wondering if they will just run their course...like some of the other things that I got all panicky about.

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    Grand Master Reefer CarmieJo's Avatar
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    I have a friend who feeds his harlequins asterinas. If you go that route make sure you keep some in the sump (fuge?) so you have an ample supply of dinner for him.
    Carmie


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    Grand Master Reefer JustDavidP's Avatar
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    My buddy had tons in his 120 and the shrimp ate them quickly. Scraping them into a net and moving to the sump/fuge is a good idea. I do think that you'd end up having to buy more stars later. I don't know if you can keep enough going to feed a harlequin for a long time.

    Dave
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    "Fins to the left...Fins to the Right, I'm going home to play with my reef tonight..."

    If you're looking for me, and I'm MIA from the board, email me at JustDavidP (at) gmail (dot) com.

    Experience in aquaria, 37 years. Experience in marine, 22+ years. Experience in Reef Keeping, 8 years. Always a newbie!

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    Apprentice intheb0x's Avatar
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    i have one of these in my tank. when i was moving stuff around he came out, that was the first and last time i seen him.

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    Grand Master Reefer JustDavidP's Avatar
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    If you see one, you probably have dozens They are good at camoflage and are on your rockwork. All it takes is to have one, and you can get many more. Again, they're good things.. no worries.

    Dave
    ><((((>`..`..`...><((((>
    `.. , . .`.. >((((>

    "Fins to the left...Fins to the Right, I'm going home to play with my reef tonight..."

    If you're looking for me, and I'm MIA from the board, email me at JustDavidP (at) gmail (dot) com.

    Experience in aquaria, 37 years. Experience in marine, 22+ years. Experience in Reef Keeping, 8 years. Always a newbie!

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