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Old 09/03/2006, 03:10 PM   #1
phender
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I fragged my carpet last night

My merten's carpet has gotten to a beast, over 24" across. I have been thinking of trying to cut it in half all Summer. Speaking with Anthony Calfo at the SoCal Reefapalooza gave me a little more confidence. Well, yesterday the anemone started to move a little out of its crevice, so I figured it was now or never.

I put it in an empty 5gal bucket to see if it would release a little water and then transfered it to another to "de-water" a little more. I should have used a contained with more surface area because the anemone didn't have to emit much water to cover itself in the bucket.

Here it is on the cutting board. The towels around the edges came in reeeeally handy.


I used a very sharp filet knife to do the cut. I'm glad I didn't try a razor blade. There was just too much tissue to get through on an animal this size. The first cut was non eventful. The second cut released about a gallon of water. (thank goodness for the towels)
He it is after the cut and then the two halves rinsing in their own buckets.





The red you see is the anemones foot.

It let the halves sit in their buckets for about 15 min.(Not long enough as it turns out)
I then placed them back in their tank, one on the substate and the other in a basket.

Here they are about 20min after the cut


Yes, that is a white cap clown.


Here's the bad news. They both still had a lot of slime left to produce. Although the clowns showed no affect at all, within a half hour all my other fish were dead. Most I have had 5-10 years. My Flame-fin and purple tangs I was able to pull out and put them into another aquarium but I couldn't same them. The royal gramma, flame hawk and azure damsel went into the rocks and couldn't be recovered until after it was too late.
This is something to consider in the future when fragging large anemones.

Here are some pictures after 17 hours. Both animals are firmly attached to either rocks or the basket. The are reactive to the touch. In fact, I had to move the one in the aquarium a little and when I began to get him off the rock, he balled up like him was perfectly healthy.
They are both still in a bit of a horse shoe shape and I don't know if an anemone this big will join up the cut sides or just fill in the missing tissue with new growth. I'm keeping my fingers crossed and started to plan my new tank inhabitants

Most of the damaged part is tucked underneath. He isn't really in as much of a horse shoe shape as it looks.


This is a recent pic of the merten's before the cut. The orange skunk is about a 3.5" fish.



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Old 09/03/2006, 03:14 PM   #2
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WOW Phil!!! That is a great undertaking and feat....

I'm sorry your other inhabitants did not fare so well However, this is doing such wonders to this hobby, as I'm sure not many of us have tried this, and see the outcomes.

I like those photos you took. How are your corals and clownfishes doing now after a day?

Best,
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Old 09/03/2006, 03:20 PM   #3
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i agree!

sorry for your losses. but incredible infomation............


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Old 09/03/2006, 03:25 PM   #4
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All clownfish and inverts (LPS, mushroom/ricordia, leathers, zoanthids, hermits, snails) seem to be doing fine.


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Old 09/03/2006, 03:28 PM   #5
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thats really interesting phender.....


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Old 09/03/2006, 04:11 PM   #6
Gary Majchrzak
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Wow.
I wish I could have warned you in advance about your fishes.
Large anemones that are stressed are capable of killing fish in the same aquarium. I don't know if it's the shed nematocysts or some kind of chemical that is lethal.
You are brave, Phil. I'm watching this closely to see the results.
Wow.


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Old 09/03/2006, 04:22 PM   #7
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Wow. Glad it sort of worked out. You defitnatly have brass you know whats. I would have never tried that.
rob


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Old 09/03/2006, 04:26 PM   #8
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Gary, I know people have talked about stressed magnificas killing fish. It just never accured to me that this anemone, that has been pulled of the rocks and put in a more appropriate place several times and produced slime, would have this problem.

I'll tell you what though, I was glad I had plenty of paper towels. Everytime I picked the anemone (or pieces of it) up, it felt like there was an inch of slime covering my hands. The buckets that I used were so covered that I'm going to have to use a scouring pad to clean them out.

Believe me, I was real close to putting it back into the aquarium when it was sitting on that cutting board.


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Old 09/03/2006, 04:51 PM   #9
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Talk about "cutting edge" anemone husbandry...
it looks like a Chicago style pizza on that cutting board!

Calfo has everyone thinking about cutting up their carpet anemone. I've yet to see any successes with my own eyes.
Did you precondition the anemone with heavy feedings well in advance of making the cut?


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Old 09/03/2006, 04:58 PM   #10
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Phil,

What an amazing undertaking. . .sorry you lost so many fish. I'll be interested to see how the 2 "halves" fare.

If you ever want to sell one. . . .





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Old 09/03/2006, 06:00 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally posted by Gary Majchrzak
Talk about "cutting edge" anemone husbandry...
it looks like a Chicago style pizza on that cutting board!

Calfo has everyone thinking about cutting up their carpet anemone. I've yet to see any successes with my own eyes.
Did you precondition the anemone with heavy feedings well in advance of making the cut?
I normally don't target feed this anemone. Since it took up most the tank, it ccaught most of the food meant for the fish. However for the past two weeks I had been giving it an additional silverside everyother day. I must admit, I didn't know Anthony suggested additional feeding, I just happened to start doing because I wanted to try and keep it smaller.
I know that sounds funny, but I have found that it seems like sometimes anemones don't expand as much when they are full. Of course you run the risk of increasing the anemone's mass, but I appears smaller because it is not expanded to its maximum. Yes, it was a short term solution to a growing problem (pun intended )


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Old 09/03/2006, 06:42 PM   #12
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We'll just sticky this one for a bit ;>)


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Old 09/03/2006, 08:17 PM   #13
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Good call Scott!

Best,
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Old 09/03/2006, 08:36 PM   #14
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Phil OMG dude! Brave very brave someone has to do it and no better person in my eyes to try it out.

Sorry about your fish. Weird though how your corals had no effect to the Anemones toxic waste.

I never knew your Mertens carpet was that beautiful. The newest pictures posted in the healing process shows beautiful coloration and Im sure you will come out with a great outcome.

Keep us posted!

PS: If this comes out successful Ill be at your house with my huge blue S.Hadonni

Sam


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Old 09/03/2006, 09:35 PM   #15
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I've been giving serious consideration to doing this with my large LTA since Anthony straightened me out on the ability of anemones to heal after such an event, so I will be following with interest.


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Old 09/03/2006, 09:58 PM   #16
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Sorry about the fish. I am very interested in the out come of this experiment. Goodluck Phil.


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Old 09/03/2006, 10:04 PM   #17
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Very very cool


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Old 09/03/2006, 11:58 PM   #18
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I appreciate the sticky, but I couldn't find my own post when I was looking for it. Could you put it at the bottom of the sticky list instead of the top?


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Old 09/04/2006, 04:50 AM   #19
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Re: I fragged my carpet last night

Quote:
Originally posted by phender
Speaking with Anthony Calfo at the SoCal Reefapalooza gave me a little more confidence.
I nearly lost my lunch when I saw him slice that rose.

Sorry 'bout the fish.

Sam, put me down if you ever decide to split yours.


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Old 09/04/2006, 05:25 AM   #20
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I've seen plenty of BTA's propagated like this with success but I've never seen it happen with a Merten's, Haddon's or gigantea carpet anemone. I hope both halves of the beast heal up nicely, Phil.


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Old 09/04/2006, 07:43 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally posted by phender
I appreciate the sticky, but I couldn't find my own post when I was looking for it. Could you put it at the bottom of the sticky list instead of the top?
Wish I had the power to move it around in the stack, but the order is generated on the date of first post.

I can leave it or let it float, not that I think this thread will fall off page 1 or 2 naturally though ;>)

Let me know and keep us up to date


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Old 09/04/2006, 01:00 PM   #22
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Go ahead and let it float Scott. I'm going to try to post new pics almost everyday anyway.
Thanks


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Old 09/04/2006, 01:46 PM   #23
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So how is he doing? Healing or all deflated?


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Old 09/04/2006, 01:59 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally posted by phender
Go ahead and let it float Scott. I'm going to try to post new pics almost everyday anyway.
Thanks
Done and Doner.


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Old 09/04/2006, 02:18 PM   #25
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It looks like maybe the cut parts are coming together on both pieces after all. The feet on both are attached firmly. The one in the tank has been moving around a bit, but I think it has found a spot that it likes now. The body and oral disks on both seem to have nice water pressure in them. The tentacles are not as inflated as much as I would like, but that goes along with the body being a little over inflated so that there is more space between the tentacles than normal. The under inflating makes the tentacle tips look green. When they are inflated fully they are more yellow.

Here is the one in the tank at ~24 hrs. The cut is at about 8 o'clock if the anemone was a clock. I am sorry the pics aren't better, but I am hesitant to touch the amemone in fear that I might pull something apart, if in fact things are trying to fuse together.


Here are the anemones at 40 hrs.
The cut in this pic is at about 7 o'clock. The red spotted thing to the right is the anemone's foot. The red speckled foot is one of the identifying characteristics of a merten's carpet. It is the only clownfish hosting carpet that has this, however S. tapetum sometimes have it as do the Atlantic carpets. I'm a little worried about the clownfish, as she can get a little rough with the anemone. Right now she is preoccupied with trying to show the orange skunk who is boss.


The cut in this pic is at about 1 o'clock. This piece was a little bit bigger from the start. It is looking a lot bigger because the body is more inflated than the one in the tank. There is quite a bit of current going though the basket. The pump return for the aquarium is hitting the basket at an angle just to the right of the anemone. You can probably see the surface disturbance in the picture.

Things are looking pretty good. I am a pleasently surprized with how they look, considering that 2 days ago they had all their guts hanging out. It looks like they may pull themselves back into a circle and heal up after all.


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