Local Nudibranch / Sea Slug ID - Friend or Foe?

Discussion in 'ID Needed' started by ascheff, 14 Mar 2015.

  1. ascheff

    ascheff

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    Hi guys,

    I was at the North Coast in February and I brought back some macro algae. Most of it went into my refugium, but I also put some in my quarantine tank to keep my biological filtration going while I don't have any fish in it, and also to culture some copepods in there for when I do add a fish that might need them.

    Anyway, so now a month later there are a whole bunch of nudibranchs or sea slugs in there, and I'm hoping for an ID.

    They are about 5 - 8mm long at the moment, dark green with tiny white spots and white tips on their "antennae". They fold open over the length of their backs, to appear almost leaf like. I'm 90% certain they must have arrived as eggs, as I went over all the macro algae very carefully for hitchhikers. The algae came from rock pools in Ballito.

    The QT tank only has a flow pump, some PVC pipes and the macro algae. They are not very sensitive to changes in water parameters, as the heater isn't on, so the temperature fluctuates from about 26/27 during the day to I guess lower 20s at night. It's small water volume, only 13 liters. I also only top up maybe once a week, so salinity is also all over the place. I guess probably because they are adapted to living in rock pools that are not very stable.

    I have one bad photo of them in the tank, where you can sort off see their shape when folded open. Sorry, I don't have a proper light on my QT. I took two out for better photos, but their "flaps" are closed in those photos.

    Anyone know what they are and what they eat? Should I be taking a closer look at my DT / refugium, as some of the same algae also went in there?

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    @RiaanP @Lord_Blackadder
     
    Last edited by a moderator: 26 Nov 2015
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  3. ascheff

    ascheff Thread Starter

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    I looked through a list a nudibranchs from South Africa on Wikipedia, but many of them don't have articles, and more than half of the ones that have articles, don't have photos.
     
  4. SteveZi

    SteveZi

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    Elysia ornata - they feed on codium
     
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  5. ascheff

    ascheff Thread Starter

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    Awesome, thank you. By the looks of things they are strictly herbivores that feed on the sap of the algae. That means they're probably reef safe, so I needn't worry about them in my display tank. Unfortunately they probably won't survive long if all they feed on is codium. That's what I think they have in the tank now, and what they came with, but without proper light I'm sure it will not last long. I might move some of them into my refugium and see what happens.
     
    Last edited: 14 Mar 2015
  6. jimilutz

    jimilutz

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    They use their flaps to glide to a new place. When I put two in my DT, they both got shattered in the wavemakers. Very pretty though. I found mine chewing on sea lettuce with no codium anywhere around.
     
  7. ascheff

    ascheff Thread Starter

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    I've got sea lettuce (which isn't growing as wildly as I hoped), and a few other types of macro algae, including a piece of codium, in my refugium. I'll move a few of them in there and see if I can keep them alive. As long as they stay away from my return pump, they should be okay. I've got my return somewhat shielded with plastic mesh already.
     
  8. ascheff

    ascheff Thread Starter

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    I have found another type, so I figured I'd add it to this thread again, seeing as I want to know the same; what species / genus it, and is it safe to leave in my tank?

    This time I'm much less sure where it came from, as I found it in my display crawling along the rock. It might not be local. It's entirely white and about 5mm long. The last addition to my tank, that it might have hitchhiked on, was a clam a few weeks ago, that I obviously didn't dip. I did however inspect and brush its shell with a toothbrush, before adding it.

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    Last edited: 15 Mar 2015
  9. saaid

    saaid

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    That one looks to be a montipora eating nudi.
     
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  10. ascheff

    ascheff Thread Starter

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    Arghh, that was what I was afraid of. Been looking at photos of them, and it does seem a very close match. I have monti cap in my tank, but I found this guy at the opposite side of the tank. Will have to take a close look at my monti. I'll keep him out of my display for now.
     
  11. ascheff

    ascheff Thread Starter

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    @saaid Thanks, I think you're definitely right with your ID. I found more, although much smaller, on a monti frag. It appears as white fuzz, but on closer inspection it's the same thing. I can't see any on my main monti colony, but it's not as easy to inspect.

    I took the frags out and gave it a 15 min Seachem Reef Dip, which strangely did nothing to the nudis. Not sure if it is expired, or if it can even expire.


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    Last edited by a moderator: 26 Nov 2015
  12. saaid

    saaid

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    My man

    Its a long battle sadly.

    I've been experimenting with different stuff.

    Strangely enough dettol does work but takes time.
     
  13. ascheff

    ascheff Thread Starter

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    Seeing as the Seaham dip isn't working, it could have arrived on any of my corals I guess, as I dip all new coral with the same stuff.
     
  14. SteveZi

    SteveZi

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    You'll have to get rid of those buggers - they'll do terrible damage to your montiporas.
     
  15. ascheff

    ascheff Thread Starter

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    Yup, I've removed the frag with nudis. That one frag isn't worth risking the rest of my corals. I'll inspect the rest daily for any signs of more in my display.
     
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