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  1. #1
    Senior Member Andy's Avatar
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    My Flatworm Experience

    Hi guys

    I have had my current reef up for about 3 years now. After about 6 months, I started noticing some flatworms in the rock work. I was told that they would likely disappear in time. I think it was Eric Borneman that told me to just sit tight and they would eventually crash. I've been sitting tight now for 2.5 years and they haven't increased nor decreased in their numbers. Their numbers were what I would consider to be moderate. I hate the buggers. Just seeing them in my setup bothered me. I've read a ton of threads regarding their removal using Salifert Flatworm Exit and Greenex.

    Finally, last night I got up the nerve to treat my system with the FW Exit. At 8:45 PM, I dumped in about 1 2/3 bottles of the stuff into my tank (enough to treat 500 gallons) after removing my fluidized carbon reactor. My skimmer was left on. My system holds about 330 gallons of water. A few minutes after adding the FW Exit, I started to see FW coming out of the rockwork and sandbed. They started to drift into the current. I used a powerhead to blow off the rocks and get as many of the flatworms up into the current as possible where they would go out into the overflows and into the sump where I have micron socks that catch detritus from the overflows. I monitored the tank closely for 45 minutes looking for any signs of stress. At 9:30 PM, I put the fluidized carbon filter and a HOT Magnum charged with new carbon back on line. I also pulled out the micron socks and replaced them with fresh ones.

    All of the fish were behaving normal. Most of the sps showed full polyp extension except for a few that had withdrawn slightly. Some zooanthids were closed up. Clams and LPS were fine. At 11:00 PM, I did a 30 gallon water change. All looked well. I watched the tank for another hour then went to bed.

    This morning I have been looking at the tank under actinics and there don't seem to be any signs of live flatworms. There are still some flatworms lying on the sand bed but I don't think they are alive. The skimmer cup contains a pungent reddish slime. All tank inhabitants look fine so far. I will update later today once the halides have been on for a while. I plan to treat the tank again next week with the FW exit to make sure there are no remaining FWs. I will likely leave the FW Exit in the tank over night to make sure they are all killed. I don't think there will be too much toxins in the tank on the second treatment. Now I wish I had done this treatment years ago when I first noticed the problem. From now on, I will be treating all my new acquisitions with FW Exit for flatworms and all sps with Interceptor for red bugs.

    Hope this experience helps anyone with similar issues.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Flame*Angel's Avatar
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    Congratulations Andy. I had a similar experience a couple years ago. The flatworms just wouldn't go away. Mine reached plague proportions at one point. I spent an entire winter working hard at reducing their numbers and then treated with flatworm exit in the spring. I did a second treatment a week later as well. I haven't seen a single flatworm since. Nothing in my tank was bothered by the flatworm exite, short term or long term.
    Susan

  3. #3
    Senior Member
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    FW exit is great stuff, but there are a few flatworms that seem to be resistant. I have some in my fuge that have gone through 5 treatments with triple doses.

  4. #4
    Senior Member CableGuy's Avatar
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    I just found some flatworms in my tank the other night. I just ordered some Flatworm exit. I'm going to do a double dose.... I hope that will do the trick.

    Colby
    "DREAM LIKE YOU'LL LIVE FOREVER, LIVE LIKE YOU'LL DIE TOMMOROW"

  5. #5
    Senior Member Andy's Avatar
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    Just thought I'd give an update. When I got home this afternoon, the halides were on and there was absolutely no sign of any flatworms. Yeeha! I switched out the micron socks, pulled out the fluidized carbon chamber and the HOT Magnum, cleaned out the skimmer then put the carbon media chamber back online with fresh carbon. I will be watching the tank very closely over the next week or two for any additional flatworms. From what I understand, there are usually a few die hard flatties that survive the first or second dose. I am wondering whether I should treat again in a week even if I don't see any flatworms in the system. Anyone care to comment or give advice.

    Thanks,

    Andy

  6. #6
    Senior Member reefmutt's Avatar
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    Congrats! nice feeling eh? If you had the red ones you probably killed them as they are pretty sensitive to the FE. A manderin or scooter would probably clean out the tank of any survivors. If you don't see any alive, why not wait it out before treating again. As you've seen, the stuff has no effect on the rest of the tank, so dosing again shouldn't be a concern whether it is now or later... then again, another dose right away would probably eradicate them for good!
    Matt.

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

  7. #7
    Senior Member Andy's Avatar
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    You bet it feels good Matt. I can't believe I waited 2.5 years before I got up the nerve to treat the tank. The tank looks so much nicer now that the flatworms are gone. I think I will wait it out and at the first sign of any, I'll nuke em. Salifert FW Exit is truly an amazing product.

  8. #8
    Senior Member reefmutt's Avatar
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    Yup!! I wish that the red acro bug medication was as specific a killer ...
    Matt.

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

  9. #9
    Senior Member Andy's Avatar
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    Here's a question for you. If you buy a new acro, do you treat it with both FW Exit and Interceptor. If so, can you do it at the same time.

  10. #10
    Senior Member tang_man_montreal's Avatar
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    When I buy any corals, I dip them in FW exit for an hour...

    I don't have interceptor, so I havn't had the chance to try it yet... however that's a great question Andy...

    Oh, and congats on the FW removal!
    I am Homer of BORG... Prepare to be..OOOO!! DONUT!!!!!!

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