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FishFan 08-27-2007 09:27 PM

Hey! I've Got Critters In My Tank...What are they?
Hey gang,

My wife and I have been noticing that we have some newly found critters in our 55 gallon FOWLR tank of late. We noticed some very small, white, semi-opaque "bugs" crawling around in our live sand and base rock. They look like very small grains of rice w/legs and when any piece of food hits the bottom...BAM, they hit it hard. I occasionally drop a shrimp pellet in the tank for my hermit crab and lone peppermint shrimp to munch on and these little guys absolutely tear it apart. Any thoughts? Are these copepods? I have some serpent sea stars too, but these are much smaller and as I described, completely different.

Also, I notice today a small, white spider crawling around in my tank, near the exit ports for my filter system. It was a little bigger than the average serpent, brittle sea stars, but not by much. I didn't think it needed to be in my tank so I sucked him out with a turkey baster and shot him outside.

Anyone have any comments on these two critters, fill me in!

caferacermike 08-28-2007 05:07 PM

I'm guessing you've seen your first copepod. When my tank had matured free of fish for about 3 months my tank was crawling in them. I found them fascinating and almost decided not to add fish.

FishFan 08-28-2007 08:02 PM

Thanks Mike. And the spider? Any ideas?

I take it these copepods are a good thing and I should be thankful for having them cleaning up the crap? Got plenty of them.

caferacermike 08-29-2007 04:05 PM

My first guess is an encounter with a micro brittle, they stay small and have the markings of the serpent star. Another possibility, but a long shot, is that you may have seen a medusa/spaghetti worm.

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