Thursday, May 27, 2010
I came home from school a two weeks ago to find most of my acropora's infested with the dreaded Red Bugs (Tegastes acroporanus). I was able to obtain a couple of pills of Interceptor from my Vet after showing them Dustin Dorton's research documentation. Interceptor has been known to kill hermit crabs and shrimp so I made sure I tried to capture as many of these inverts as possible. First, I took out all of the hermit crabs and snails I could find and put them into a 5 gallon quarantine tank. Next, I tried to catch the two Scarlet Skunk Cleaner Shrimp and two Fire Shrimp with no success. After four days had passed with no success I decided to add the Interceptor to the tank with the shrimp still in there. Before I could treat the tank I had to submerge my skimmers airline intake underwater so it would not create foam and I took out the bag of carbon. I crushed up half of a large dog pill of Interceptor and mixed it in with a half gallon of tank water. I added half of this solution into the display tank and the other half into the sump. I kept all of the pumps running and let the tank run for nine and a half hours before I reconnected the skimmer and added new carbon. I started the treatment at 11:30am and around 12pm all the Acro's were showing their feeding tentacles. At 3:30pm the polyp extension was very noticeable and some of the Red Bugs were falling off. At 7pm all of the Red Bugs had fallen off and I could see Amphipods, Isopods, Mysid Shrimp, and baby snails all moving around in the refugium. Aat 9pm I added a cup of the ROX 0.8 carbon and reconnected the protein skimmer. The next morning all the shrimp were still alive so I added the snails and hermit crabs back into the display tank. Four days later all the the inverts are doing well and it seems that the Interceptor did not kill any of my pod population. I have looked at all of my acro's with a magnifying glass and cannot find a single Red Bug! I still have two more treatments to do but so far this method has been a success.