Active Reefer
I have developed a soft spot for creatures such as sponges and squirts. They seem to be a very important part of a reef ecosystem but have a bad reputation with most reef keepers. I have tried to learn about them and understand that they are dependant on the planktonic food web since they lack symbiotic algae. But when people tell me "Oh you can't keep them" It just makes me read a little bit more and try a little harder.

Are there people here in the collectors forum who have dared to break with convention and keep sea squirts and sponges? Can you share some of your experience with me to help me learn about them?

Thanks: Ken


Advanced Reefer
Some species are of course, harder to keep than others.

I think tank conditions should be similar to a softies tank. They really thrive in nutrient rich environments with low lighting. Keep them in shaded areas, where it's less likely for any algae to grow over them. Regular feedings of phytoplankton are a must, and target feeding might even be necessary for tunicates and sea squirts.

At all costs, do not expose them to air. If air gets trapped within their capillaries, it becomes very difficult for them to breath and feed.

Have fun!


To add to what Karl said:

Feed rotifers and phytoplankton, they love both. Also, many require higher silica levels, so you may need to dose some silica is your levels are to low(or non existant :D). Steve Tyree has a great book on Tunicates, you should chek it out.

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