Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 12

Thread: Tunicata

  1. #1
    Senior Member tiffany's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Posts
    860

    Tunicata

    Has anyone had a Tunicata, the RS has a LR with 2 large blue Tunicata's and some other sea squirts, (though they couldn't tell me the names...I was told they were bi-valves????)
    I believe that they are hard to keep and was wondering if anyone has any experience with them?
    "The significant problems we face cannot be solved at the same level of thinking we were at when we created them."
    - Albert Einstein (1879-1955)

  2. #2
    Senior Member Toooloud's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Posts
    1,191
    i have had one for a couple of years now.. doing well.. but i have heard that they are hard to keep.. Its more that they are hard to aclimate to the new tank.. But once its in the tank it should be fine.

  3. #3
    Senior Member tiffany's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Posts
    860
    Thanks, I wasn't sure whether or not to buy this rock with several different species on it or not. (they wanted big $$'S)
    I've heard they can't tolerate nitrates at all, is this true?
    How did you acclimatise it? As they wrap corals etc in wet newspaper and I find acclimatization can be difficult, as there's no water from their tanks to use to slowly adjust them to the different parameters.
    "The significant problems we face cannot be solved at the same level of thinking we were at when we created them."
    - Albert Einstein (1879-1955)

  4. #4
    AC Partner MomRules's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Posts
    875
    Tunicates are great water filters, Tiffany! I had one for quite awhile until it got buried in sand by something. Make sure it gets lots of water flow! They are similar to sponges that way. THere is a good section on them in Calfo's Reef Invertebrates book.
    Gail in Nova Scotia

  5. #5
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Posts
    5,122
    Tiff,
    The reason they are hard to keep is because they are notoriously hard to ship. Like any other sponge, they HAVE to alwats be completely immerse in water which is hard to verify until it starts to decline in health. If your tank is mature ( lots of stuff to filter feed on) and it has shipped well, then it should be easy to keep. They also absolutely HATE getting their pores ( if you can call it that) blocked by sand and whatnot. If your LFS is willing to hold it for a couple weeks, then you can keep an eye on it. If they insist on you taking it on the spot, then they know how they shipp too and don't want it to die in their hands.

  6. #6
    Senior Member reefmutt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Posts
    1,770
    My experiance with tunicates is that they are a crap shoot. some do very well and live forever, others simply shrink over time until they are gone. I think it is a nutrition thing. If you can identify what it is that they feed on and provide that for them, great. A mature tank with a refugium and all sorts of microfauna would give them a better chance, I think. I find that the ones that arrive for free on live rock and corals usually do better than the ones you have to pay big bucks for---funny, that...
    Greg, I'm not 100% sure but I think they are more closely related to clams than sponges. As Tiff said , her LFS called them bi-vavles- I think that's accurate. I'll have to look at Calfo's book. See you Tomorrow...
    Matt.

    Old system torn down to make a playroom.. planning a 62x42x28 high

  7. #7
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Posts
    5,122
    Reefmutt ( & everyone else),
    I just checked my "Reef Invertebrates" book from Calfo & Fenner and nowhere does it say they are more closely related to clams. They do however repeatedly compare their similarities to sponges. Yes, they have bi-valves, but that is the ONLY similarity. Tunicates have a digestive, nervous, reproductive & circulatory system ( including a heart with which they have the ability to reverse their "blood flow"). They are all basically bacteriovores and none ship well as their body formation is not designed to support their own weight out of the water which will most often lead to their collapsing or imploding in onto itself or simply get air trapped inside themselves which is most often fatal. Another interesting thing noted in the book is that while some of the biggest ones that can grow up to a foot long are able to live a couple of years while the majority of them will grow a mere couple of inches and even in their natural habitat in the wild will live anywhere from a mere week to a couple months. This is maybe one of the reasons people think they can't be kept long and don't do well in aquariums. The truth is that even in the wild they simply don't have a long lifespan at all. One last thing is that one of their defenses is that their tunicate ( outer body or coating) is highly toxic and can release all kinds of nasties into the watercolumn in a tank when they die. All in all, not a very good beginner or even intermediate invert to house according to A Calfo & B fenner.

  8. #8
    Senior Member tiffany's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Posts
    860
    Hmmm, toxic, Huh. Decisions decisions......
    I'll go in and look again.
    I'd initially queried the RS about the bi-valve issue and he was rather gruff with me, by sight they look more associated with sponges, I don't think he had any idea.......
    So I'll be gently turkey blasting every other day to rid sand etc????
    If I do decide to get them, how shall I Tell them to 'package' them?
    Do they tolerate nitrates? mine can be around 5ppm occasionally, and I believe they are intolerable of them.
    The tanks a good 2 years old.
    Momrules did your tunicate expel toxins when it died and what signs did you see that indicated impending doom??
    "The significant problems we face cannot be solved at the same level of thinking we were at when we created them."
    - Albert Einstein (1879-1955)

  9. #9
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Posts
    5,122
    Tiff,
    I think Calfo & Fenner are more or less just being a bit cautious. Apparantly many things expel toxins when they die or are irritated but if your system is big enough and your filtering/skimming/ carbon or whatever is working well, then usually it can be removed with no problems. Of course, there always is an extreme case where a tank can be hurt by it, but I think these are rather uncommon enough. For example, everyone says that cukes can takeout a whole tank when they die. true for some species, but mst of the common ones are harmless enough. I myself went through an all black cuke popping it's innards with no consequences whatsoever.
    I think if you have them bag it underwater and it's in good health when you take it, then it will be fine. Just keep it ALWAYS underwater even at your house. Place it in a spot where it will get decent flow to filter well. Do you have any books or done any reading up on these guys yet? My book I referred to for the post above has about 10 pages of info just on these guys.

  10. #10
    Senior Member tiffany's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Posts
    860
    I was looking at getting some better books, but they're $100 minimum here and wanted to get the most comprehensive and accurate books I can on fish and corals...still looking into that one, any good suggestions would be appreciated, I'd have to buy on-line as the stock list is limited somewhat here...
    I have a dumb question, but here it goes...How do you know if your tank is nutrient rich? I have lots of different macro algae, due to the fact that no-one eats algae at the moment in the tank, but that will change no doubt...
    I'm w/out skimmer, was hoping santa would drop one of but he likes David Bowie more....Hey I'm still Happy, BTW $400 for 2 tickets...The R/stones were $350 each!!! and elton John well...Oh! I know where my skimmer $$$'s went, but you have to see these guys before they die!!!
    "The significant problems we face cannot be solved at the same level of thinking we were at when we created them."
    - Albert Einstein (1879-1955)

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •