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Starfish and a Clam


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IDK about the CC star. I do know not to get a red or blue linka star. They are supposed to just wither away and die.


Most people say to wait about six months to get a clam. Since you got a tank that was established already, you may be able to skip the waiting period. As long as your water is stable, and you have good water quality, and good lights you should be able to get a clam. I would still wait a few months to be sure.


Good luck with the clam. I hope that it works out for you.


dsoz :)

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DO NOT get a CC star, they are not reef safe. Blue, and orange linkia (fromia, sp.) are much safer but they need a big tank with lots of grazing room (125 gallon at least to be really healthy). The big thing there is getting one that has been in a tank either in a LFS for a while or from a local reefer, they don't shop well. I have had a blue linkia for a year and a half with no issues. They are very sensitive to acclimation

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I missed the clam question, Im not sure what lights you have, that has a big influence on clam type, a good basic species is the derasa clam, they will get up to 18" but hey grow pretty slow. As far as light they should be considered in the following order


Giga (highly recommended)





the giga gets big but it takes decades, mine has grown about 2" this year.

Water quality should be nitrates under 10 ppm and no nitrite ammonia.

The reason people tell you to wait 6 months is tank stability, you need to have a nice stabile ph, alk cal and mag. Your clams won't grow without this, or worse die. I added croceas the first week I got my tank with no issues (but I had no cycle) And I still have those clams today.

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Most definately stay away from the chocolate chip star. The linkias I agree are the coolest for a reef tank, and my orange linkia has been with me for 3 months almost with no problem.


As far as clams go, definately wait awhile for your tank to be as stable as possible. I have yet to add one to my current display because I am waiting a few more months just to make sure. In my 90g I had a nice crocea for along time with great success. They also tend to be the "best bang for the buck" when it comes to size and color. If you can find a nice looking maxima, go for it too. Either way, make you you are using some halides for these guys. They will grow much faster, show their true vibrance, and quite honestly will die fairly quickly without them. I've heard of people keeping them under VHO's, but I would go with halides for sure.


Good luck and keep me posted on how the tank progresses.



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Depends on the clam species, with my T-5 (8 bulb) lights I keep the gigas, maximas, and derasa on the bottom, and the croceas middle to 1/3 the way up in my 24" tank, this would be about the same with a decent MH light. Don't be fooled by everyone telling you that MH is only thing that will work, again what lights you have and how deep is the tank?

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I believe metal halides are definitely preferred. Croceas require more intense lighting than any other clam. They're a shallow-water species, so they'll thrive with lower/warmer Kelvin lighting (ie, 6K-10K) and with placement nearer to the surface. Lots of people with cooler lighting (12, 14, 20K) have success with them, though, so I'm not sure how important color temp is... I read once that they can tolerate more current than most clams because they're close-to-shore in nature, but I don't know about that. Mine's in a med/low-flow area.


I placed mine on a shelf of rock 12"deep (in a 24"deep tank) right under one of my MH bulbs (250W 10Ks), and it's thriving. I think it was prob about 3" when I got it before Xmas 06, and now it's about 5" (they only reach about 6" in captivity).


They bore themselves onto rocks or coral in nature, so if you put it in the substrate, I'd advise you to put a rock underneath it. Otherwise, it'll dig in and take hold of the bottom of your tank...then good luck trying to ever move it! I tried to move mine once, and that thing had a death-grip on the rock surface.DOH! I never could get it to release, so it's still sitting in its original locale. If you try to force it to let go, you can tear the tissue and seriously damage it.


Please post pics when you get one--I'd love to see! :D

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If you ever really want the clam detached the best way is piss it off, either by gently rocking it back in fourth or put something entirely over it, it will get aggravated and let its bysuss threads detach and start moving on its own, or if your impatient you can gently rock it about 15 degrees to the side (no more) and cut its bysuss threads with a razor, it will heal in a couple days and it does not hurt it.


I have said my part about light, I'm not going to get into another light issue with clams, We have covered it multiple times, just like with SPS if you can't keep an acro in your tank you prolly don't have the light for clams. I don't think type of light has anything to do with it, the MH answer is just an easy way of getting around the question, just remember its PAR your looking for not type of light and a hint is your reflector will make all the difference in the world.

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The rule of thumb with starfish... is if they are smooth they should be ok for a reef tank, bumpy they are no good...


I have a marble starfish, it has been doing really well in my tank...





You could also go with a serpant star, make sure it is a serpant star and not a brittle...The serpant star is not as cool, since it really tends to hide very well during the day..and only comes out at night...


I have also had ok luck with the red sea star as well...



I hope this helps...

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  • 2 weeks later...

I will repeat, don't be fooled by those that tell you that you need metal Halide lights, it has nothing to do with light but par that matter, anyone that tells you different does not know what they are talking about, However 400 watt MH lights provide the most par per bulb and is an easy out if you don't want to do the homework or those with the cash that like to spend lots, it just depends on what you want to wager for price, cooling, and all the other fun stuff that comes with MH on the downside, but thats not the topic as I think we have beat that one many times, most everyone on here is partial to what they have and will argue it to there last dying word, I'm not partial to much of anything, much less a silly light . The unfortunate part of T-5 and same time best part of T-5 is its versatility, you don't need a lot of bulbs to get a tank up but you need a lot of bulbs and quality reflectors to get the par up to what a clam and SPS like, if its something your considering give me a ring, I have had great success with T-5's and also MH setups for friends, both have great advantages, I also have a local shop that can make some pretty cool stuff for you including pendants and parabolic reflectors for both setups to make them more efficient :D

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