Keeping a healthy and thriving reef tank is dependent on a lot of variables, including the prevention of pests. Thats right, just like in our natural oceans, parasites do make their way into our living room reefs. The most well known pests among those who keep SPS are Red Bugs and AEFW (Acro Eating Flatworms). Red Bugs are a nuisance and do impact SPS health but they are pretty easy to eradicate. AEFW, on the other hand, are a different story. An untreated infestation of AEFW can devastate a tank. There are a few options to treat a tank when the little buggers are discovered so it is certainly not a death sentence. You can opt for a more aggressive approach or a more passive, less invasive
When I first started keeping reef tanks a long time ago there seemed to be much less awareness of certain pests that can infiltrate and harm a reef tank. “Back in the day” wild colonies were all the rage and reef keepers were not as diligent about checking for pests. Dealing with Red Bugs and AEFW (Acro Eating Flatworms) wasn’t even on my radar when I had my first 90 gallon reef and it took a while before it crept into my conscience when I had my 120 gallon reef. The 120 gallon reef was my best tank to date and it was dominated with large and colorful SPS that grew from small frags and colonies My 120 Gallon Reef Tank However, over time, a few acros didn’t look as colorful as others so I tried certain remedies like changing my lighting setup or doing more water changes but nothing seemed to help.