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HELP! Brown Jelly Disease

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    Posted: October 01 2017 at 8:30pm
So about a month ago my torch frag got bjd. Then a head of my hammer did as well. I tried hydrogen peroxide and iodine dips to cure them. I also dipped my other euphillia in iodine. I thought it was gone. But when I came home today after being gone since Friday night 6 heads of my hammer had melted. They were fine Friday night when I left. I have been monitoring my tank closely since the first incident and there were no signs of bjd.

I cut off all the sick heads and am dipping all my euphillia and lps in iodine (seachem reef dip) for 30 min.

How do I got about irradiating this pest from my water?

Thanks
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote shaggydoo Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 01 2017 at 10:07pm
I've only had this happen once to a frogspawn. A few times a day I would syphon the brown goop off. I never saved the frogspawn but the disease did not spread to any other lps I had.
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http://aquariumcoraldiseases.weebly.com/brown-jelly-syndrome-bjs--brown-band-disease-brb.html

Management or Mitigation:

Picture
As with WS, the use of a broad-spectrum antibiotic, such as chloramphenicol (Tifomycine:flexyx.com, only available in USA) and metronidazole is commonly cited. Doxycycline, Oxytetracycline, Iodine and freshwater dips (15 ppt) have all been used. Low salinity should only be used for large polyp species, smaller polyp species such as Acropora do not tolerate low salinity well particularly when they are already stressed by disease. Removing infected areas of a colony well ahead of the line of healthy tissue can sometimes stop the infection from spreading but great care should be taken to siphon off loose tissue first and avoid spreading infected material around the tank. Isolation of any samples showing this disease have also been reported to sometimes stop the spread to other corals. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote jungleboy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 02 2017 at 8:06pm
Where can I get Tifomycine locally in Utah? I want to dip all my lps in it.

Does anyone have any suggestions on how to remove the pathogen from the water column?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote phys Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 02 2017 at 8:41pm
I noticed fish4u is carrying a fair amount of fish related meds... maybe give them a call? 

Only thing I can think of that would remove it from the water column is a UV sterilizer. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mark Peterson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 04 2017 at 3:21pm
I am wondering why you think it's "brown jelly disease"? I see in your most recent new topic Antibiotics in display that you say that SPS coral are also having issues. Maybe we should take a step back and change to a topic titled: What's going wrong in my tank?

This way, some of us with a little experience can ask questions to help you identify the cause and find the solution. Okay?

First question I have is: May we see some pics of the tank and the coral?
Next, how long has the tank been running and please describe specifically what was used in setup?

Aloha,
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote jungleboy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 04 2017 at 5:00pm
I believe it is BJD because it matches everything I have read online about it. So far it has only affected my euphyllia corals. I have lost 10+ heads.

It has not affected my sps, I only have one tiny frag of a birdsnest that I am trying to rehabilitate. (guess this isn't the best tank for that right now haha) 

I have an 8 gallon im nuvo. My tank has been set up for 3 years. I acquired it about 3 months ago. Since then I have changed the lighting to an ai prime, and added a refugium to the tank.

I did a water change on Sunday. My parameters are as follows. 
Ammonia Nitrite (NO2) Nitrate (NO3 ) Ph Kh Calcium Magnesuim Salinity  Temp
0 0 5 8.1 10.5 275 1350 35 79
 
I really want to kick this because in the last month I have lost 10+ heads of euphyllia. That's why I was thinking about medicating the display tank.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote MadReefer Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 04 2017 at 7:53pm
Your issue could come from the fact that the tank was moved 3 months ago after being setup for three years.

Edited by MadReefer - October 05 2017 at 4:18am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote phys Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 05 2017 at 3:42am
Not entirely sure but maybe the move when you purchased it stirred up some nasty from the sand bed and rock... I would do a few 20% water changes once a week for two or three weeks if not longer. Maybe run some carbon. You could do larger changes (even up to 75%) but you'll want to match your tank parameters with your new water parameters or get them fairly close, especially temperature and KH. If they're too far off, you may cause a little more issue than before. You could also try running some carbon to help pull out any chemicals that may be stressing things out. Be sure that when you shake off or disturb any corals that have that jelly on it, you do so when you're removing the water containing it just to be safe that it doesn't get on anything else. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mark Peterson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 05 2017 at 6:57am
Okay, that is good info. Thanks. Pics would be very helpful. I can tell a lot from pics. Phys brings up some good points, that the move changed the environment and that water changes and Activated Carbon(AC) are a big help. All reef tanks should have AC to filter out some "nasties". Bad organisms such as harmful protozoa and bacteria can more easily take over when nasties are not removed.

I remember you. You bought an RO unit from me. Smile You may already know that I have a fairly unique perspective on reefkeeping, after about 25 years of keeping many dozens of my own reef aquariums, maintaining hundreds of other peoples reef tanks and seeing 1000's other hobbyist tanks in person and here on this forum.  The way I look at it is that coral, like all organisms, have natural, built-in defenses against issues like this. They try very hard to protect themselves, but if their comfort and general health are compromised by some change in their environment that is out of the "norm", outside acceptable conditions, an illness can overtake them. 

In my experience, the key is to discover the environmental changes that made the organism susceptible to the illness in the first place and then to bring the environment back into alignment, that will help the coral recover it's good health. Sometimes, it's like an M.D. trying to diagnose a patient that has not been taking good care of himself. Unfortunately, I don't have all the answers and sometimes the only route I can find is to remove all affected coral colonies and allow the tank to run for many months before introducing any new animals (coral or fish) or anything.

1. Moving a tank is a huge environmental change leading to coral issues. Thanks to MadReefer we now know the tank was moved only 3 months ago, but we don't know what condition it was in before it was moved. Do we know if coral, especially Euphyllia, were having issues for the previous owner? Three years could be a fair amount of detritus build-up in the sand. If the tank had been going only one year, it would probably not be a possible issue. Was the sand removed and gently rinsed when re-setting up the aquarium? During transport was LR and coral submerged in the original water? 

2. What coral were in the tank before moving? Did any die during/after the move? What new coral were added, how soon after the move? Were any of those coral possibly from an infected tank?

3. How soon after moving the Euphyllia colonies did they start melting/dieing?

4. Lighting was recently changed. AI Prime is an awesome light but any change in lighting creates environmental issues. After all, this tank is very small, only 8 gallons. What was the previous lighting, how was the tank acclimated to the new light and what intensity is the light currently, how high above the water? The light emanating from an AI Prime is much more intense than we can judge with our eyes. The new light alone could be the reason for this coral dieing as it is. Dead

4. A water change was just done. What percentage of water was changed? How often has water been changed in the 3 months you have had this tank? What salt mix was used by the previous owner and what salt mix is being used now? If different, was a mixture of the two salts used for the first two water changes? A new salt mix alone can often create serious issues for coral animals. Ouch

5. If this were my reef tank, I would be asking myself, "Why is Alk heading up towards 11 dKH, while Ca is trending down towards 200 ppm." and, "How fast do I want to see those numbers return to a more acceptable 8.x dKH Alk and ~400 ppm Ca?" Low Ca and high Alk alone can be the cause of a coral issue. Cry

6. My last question this go around is, "May we see a pic of the complete tank?" If not able to post here, feel free to email the pic to mark@marksreef.com. (It's so cool to me how phones these days can take pics and send them to other phones or to an email address. My flip-phone is pretty dumb, but fairly indestructible. Approve Unfortunately, pics are pretty much indistinguishable. That's why I ask for for pics to be emailed, so I can see them on my laptop or tablet.)

Sorry for asking so many questions. If I were standing there with you, evaluating the tank, I would be able to answer many of these questions myself. My mind works this way on this forum, as I think about what I have learned about your tank so far and then thinking about what I still need to know in order for a solution to show itself. 

Please feel free to come back and continue this investigation together here on the forum or simply to use my questions as a guide to your own private investigation.

Also consider coming to tonight's meeting. I'm sure Marc Levenson, who is smarter than me, will have some useful insight into your coral issue that, discussed openly with the group, will help us all keep a healthier reef. Smile

Aloha,
Mark  Hug


Edited by Krazie4Acans - October 05 2017 at 7:09am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote jungleboy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 05 2017 at 4:40pm
Originally posted by Mark Peterson Mark Peterson wrote:

Okay, that is good info. Thanks. Pics would be very helpful. I can tell a lot from pics. Phys brings up some good points, that the move changed the environment and that water changes and Activated Carbon(AC) are a big help. All reef tanks should have AC to filter out some "nasties". Bad organisms such as harmful protozoa and bacteria can more easily take over when nasties are not removed.

I remember you. You bought an RO unit from me. Smile You may already know that I have a fairly unique perspective on reefkeeping, after about 25 years of keeping many dozens of my own reef aquariums, maintaining hundreds of other peoples reef tanks and seeing 1000's other hobbyist tanks in person and here on this forum.  The way I look at it is that coral, like all organisms, have natural, built-in defenses against issues like this. They try very hard to protect themselves, but if their comfort and general health are compromised by some change in their environment that is out of the "norm", outside acceptable conditions, an illness can overtake them. 

In my experience, the key is to discover the environmental changes that made the organism susceptible to the illness in the first place and then to bring the environment back into alignment, that will help the coral recover it's good health. Sometimes, it's like an M.D. trying to diagnose a patient that has not been taking good care of himself. Unfortunately, I don't have all the answers and sometimes the only route I can find is to remove all affected coral colonies and allow the tank to run for many months before introducing any new animals (coral or fish) or anything.

1. Moving a tank is a huge environmental change leading to coral issues. Thanks to MadReefer we now know the tank was moved only 3 months ago, but we don't know what condition it was in before it was moved. Do we know if coral, especially Euphyllia, were having issues for the previous owner? Three years could be a fair amount of detritus build-up in the sand. If the tank had been going only one year, it would probably not be a possible issue. Was the sand removed and gently rinsed when re-setting up the aquarium? During transport was LR and coral submerged in the original water? 
The only corals in the tank before i bought it were a few zoas, green mushrooms, ricordea and gsp. I have added more zoas, all euphyllia, and birdsnest.
2. What coral were in the tank before moving? Did any die during/after the move? What new coral were added, how soon after the move? Were any of those coral possibly from an infected tank?
Corals were added within a month of the move. I got them from all healthy looking tanks and no diseases were reported
3. How soon after moving the Euphyllia colonies did they start melting/dieing?
One torch never seemed to really extend once it came to my tank. All others got sick only after the first torch frag melted. 
4. Lighting was recently changed. AI Prime is an awesome light but any change in lighting creates environmental issues. After all, this tank is very small, only 8 gallons. What was the previous lighting, how was the tank acclimated to the new light and what intensity is the light currently, how high above the water? The light emanating from an AI Prime is much more intense than we can judge with our eyes. The new light alone could be the reason for this coral dieing as it is. Dead
The old light was a 7W aquatop led. 
I used the acclimation setting on the light (50% decrease for 3 weeks)
At mid day my intensity is at 40%. It is about 6 inches off the water.
4. A water change was just done. What percentage of water was changed? How often has water been changed in the 3 months you have had this tank? What salt mix was used by the previous owner and what salt mix is being used now? If different, was a mixture of the two salts used for the first two water changes? A new salt mix alone can often create serious issues for coral animals. Ouch
Water change was done every other week at about 20%. I used a mix of the salt the previous owner gave me for the first 4 or 5 water changes. He used instant ocean salt. 
5. If this were my reef tank, I would be asking myself, "Why is Alk heading up towards 11 dKH, while Ca is trending down towards 200 ppm." and, "How fast do I want to see those numbers return to a more acceptable 8.x dKH Alk and ~400 ppm Ca?" Low Ca and high Alk alone can be the cause of a coral issue. Cry

6. My last question this go around is, "May we see a pic of the complete tank?" If not able to post here, feel free to email the pic to mark@marksreef.com. (It's so cool to me how phones these days can take pics and send them to other phones or to an email address. My flip-phone is pretty dumb, but fairly indestructible. Approve Unfortunately, pics are pretty much indistinguishable. That's why I ask for for pics to be emailed, so I can see them on my laptop or tablet.)

Sorry for asking so many questions. If I were standing there with you, evaluating the tank, I would be able to answer many of these questions myself. My mind works this way on this forum, as I think about what I have learned about your tank so far and then thinking about what I still need to know in order for a solution to show itself. 

Please feel free to come back and continue this investigation together here on the forum or simply to use my questions as a guide to your own private investigation.

Also consider coming to tonight's meeting. I'm sure Marc Levenson, who is smarter than me, will have some useful insight into your coral issue that, discussed openly with the group, will help us all keep a healthier reef. Smile


Edited by Krazie4Acans - October 05 2017 at 4:47pm
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Got home today and my torch that had been unaffected had brown stringy goop coming out of one of its mouths. I sucked it up with a pipette. Picture attached with the contents in a cup.

I am currently dipping the torch in iodine.


I need a solution to kill the bug in my tank. Once it is gone I will get it back in balance but I can’t handle loosing any more of my favorite corals.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mark Peterson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 06 2017 at 4:50am
Okay. I am starting to get the picture, pun intended. Wink 
The stringy brown goop is what these Euphyllia are expelling because they are stressed. Occasionally, the goop is simply Euphyllia poop. It doesn't necessarily mean they are dying, though in this case 10+ heads have been lost. I see no brown jelly disease in those pics. My experience tells me there is no pathogen here.

I believe that the new coral are getting sunburned. What they are doing is a reaction to the light being too bright, but it's not just that alone causing the problem. I will cover a few other things and then below I will give more detailed instruction about the light.

The Ca is much too low and the Alk, even though it is in the generally acceptable range, is higher than it ought to be. How did these levels get out of whack? Has there been something added to the water? If not, is it possible the Alk and Ca were like this when you bought the tank?

Though you said that Instant Ocean (IO) salt was used previously, it isn't clear to me what salt is being used now? IO makes two different salt mixes. IO regular (purple label) and IO Reef Crystals (orange label). I was wondering if a different salt is being used now and whether a mixture of the two different salts was used for a couple water changes to acclimate the animals to the new salt?

I'm still wondering if after the initial purchase and move, the sand was rinsed to clean out most of the detritus? 

This tank was also moved twice in 3 months, was it not? If I am correct, it was in Layton or Davis County somewhere and then moved to Logan, right. That's double stress.

Okay, now on to the major problem as I see it. The light intensity is too high. Remember above that I said, "The light emanating from an AI Prime is much more intense than we can judge with our eyes." That's because our eyes are accustomed to seeing a full spectrum. The narrow emission bands of 6 individual color LEDs are brighter than we realize and the white LEDs become misleading to the overall light that is contacting the coral.
The built-in acclimation setting is a nice feature, but still, the user has to set the ending intensity. In this case the ending intensity was set too high and the light fixture is mounted too close to the coral.

Here is a prime example, pun intended. Wink 
Over one of my tanks, a 30 gal breeder which is 12" deep, I placed an AI Prime about six weeks ago. It is 18" above the water of this 30 gal breeder. This allows the entire 30" long, 18" wide, 12" deep tank to be adequately illuminated. I did not use the acclimation setting. I set each of the 7 colors individually rather than according to a preset App. Initially I set the blues, violet and white at around 20%, the highest being deep blue at about 25%. Red, green and UV were set at around 7-15%, with UV at the low end. 
Around the 2nd week I increased deep blue to about 40% with the other channels increased proportionately. UV was at about 10%. 
Last week, which was about 5 weeks into the new light I increased all colors roughly proportionally with the highest intensity being deep blue and violet at about 75%. UV is the lowest at somewhere around 15% intensity. 
The light still hangs 18" above the water, 3 times the distance of your light, over a tank that is deeper than yours (coral are further from the water surface with light passing through water rather than air).  My coral are receiving less than 1/3 the intensity of light as your coral and acclimation was extended double what your coral have undergone. Frankly speaking, I believe your Euphyllia are being sunburned to death in water that is chemically out of whack. Sunburned coral take 1-4 weeks to succumb. I know because some years ago I sunburned more than $10,000 worth of coral. But that's a story for another time.

The original coral in this tank are all soft coral. They may be handling the bright light without dying, for the moment, but I would guess that they are also being stressed and that some of them may eventually succumb. I would say that they were already accustomed to the chemical imbalance, so they have only the bright light to deal with.

FYI, the detail about individual color settings was offered as an example, as a guide. I hope you won't feel too bad about your misdiagnosis of the problem. It's a too common thing these days for all of us to attempt diagnosis of illnesses and make other decisions from the evidence found on the internet. The dialogue and pictures we see there can be very convincing but, unfortunately, the information is often misleading or downright false. It's good you came here to your local forum with this problem. Thumbs Up

Aloha,
Mark  Hug

P.S.
Next - How to align the Alk and Ca. Let us know when you're ready to work on that.
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Whoops, above I said that my coral are receiving less than 1/3 the intensity of light as yours. That was wrong. I was thinking solely of the distance comparison, 18" compared to 6". I forgot that you said your light is at 40%. That's just a little more than half the intensity setting of my AI Prime HD. Still, considering the comparison of water depth, ~11" compared to what I judge to be about 8", the position of the light fixture and that my coral are on the sand, I'd have to say my coral are receiving more like 5/8 the light yours are receiving.

I'm guessing that the Euphyllia on the sand in that pic of your tank hung on as long as it could but is the last to go, because it was deeper in the water and further away from the light source. Am I guessing correctly?

Aloha,
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No i definately have brown jelly disease. The torch yesterday had goop out of its mouth. but the pic i just uploaded is the pic i took of the last meltdown. So i definately have a pathogen.

I am currently using a mix of the two salts. IO Reef crystals and IO (orange).

Yes i moved twice. And the sand wasnt rinsed. However i i have vaccumed it thouroughly a few times.

So the lighting may be a problem, but the main problem is the pathogen i have.

I need something to get rid of the pathogen ASAP  because like i said i have lots 10+ heads and i cant lose anymore. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote phys Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 07 2017 at 12:07am
I think the issue is coming from having your torches and euphyllia way too close to all those softies. Those can produce some crazy nasty stuff and literally murder other corals in pretty much the way it looks like it's dying. The brown jelly could be some microbs just munching on the dying coral, as was suggested in the link I provided. If you haven't seen it on all of them, it could just mean some were initially healthier than others or had some resistance to it. I think this may be a case of too much in too little with too different. Moving the euphyllia away from the mushrooms and gsp may help but you'll also want to run carbon to help remove the stuff they're throwing out that could be causing the deaths. On top of all that, your light may be too close or too white for the euphyllia to do well under. I've noticed some that I've had that haven't been too happy until I turned down the whites and brightness in my tank. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote jungleboy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 07 2017 at 9:16am
So I have turned my light intensity down by 10 percent.

I don’t think the softies are causing it because the first death I had was a torch that was all by itself on a frag rack. Nothing was even close to touching it.

Also define close. Because my tank is small so everything is close.

I don’t know why but it seems like everyone is discounting the fact that this is brown jelly disease. Why is that? Because it matches every sign I have read online. These corals literally go from being perfectly fine and haveing great PE to dead overnight. Iodine, not hydrogen peroxide, nor fw dips change it at all.
I am almost 100% certain that this is BJD and really want to know how to kill the microbe. After the microbe is dead I can get my tank in balance. But until it is dead my corals are still super susceptible.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mark Peterson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 07 2017 at 9:31am
Anything that will "cure" this supposed pathogen issue, cannot be administered to the entire tank. If a medicinal cure can be found, when the coral are returned to the tank, I believe that if the issues we have identified above are not corrected, the coral will again become compromised and contract the "disease". Unfortunately, sometimes the only thing even the best hobbyists can do is remove the dying animals, correct the environmental issues and wait patiently for a while before trying again.

When I first entered this hobby we were sadly accustomed to losing as many as half our fish purchases to Ich and its secondary diseases within the first few weeks. One of the early remedies to come on the scene was that suggested by our first guest speaker in 1996, Albert Theil - hot sauce. Yes, he suggested that dosing the tank with Tabasco sauce would stop Ich, so I tried it. Yes, it stopped Ich but it badly irritated and even killed a couple other organisms. Soon, the hot sauce naturally decomposed by bacterial action. The Ich Parasite was only suppressed, it then resumed compromising and killing the remainder of the fish.

I wish you all the best in your search to find the cure for your tank.

Aloha,
Mark  Hug
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mark Peterson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 07 2017 at 9:43am
So I have turned my light intensity down by 10 percent. That's not enough. I would cut it by half just to be sure. It can't hurt anything to do that. It will take a month or more for burned coral to recover. In that time, they will continue to die.

I don’t think the softies are causing it because the first death I had was a torch that was all by itself on a frag rack. Nothing was even close to touching it.
Also define close. Because my tank is small so everything is close. 
I am going to assume that you don't know that because you have probably never seen the effects of coral toxins in a closed environment. Even in a 300 gallon tank, everything is close. How long have you been in this hobby? How many tanks have you done?

I don’t know why but it seems like everyone is discounting the fact that this is brown jelly disease. Why is that? Because it matches every sign I have read online. These corals literally go from being perfectly fine and haveing great PE to dead overnight. Iodine, not hydrogen peroxide, nor fw dips change it at all.
I am almost 100% certain that this is BJD and really want to know how to kill the microbe. After the microbe is dead I can get my tank in balance. But until it is dead my corals are still super susceptible.
Again, you don't know that. We don't know that. The pics you have posted are not convincing to me, and I've seen a lot of disease and dying coral. We can only guess. What we do know is what we have already suggested. It's your choice whether or not to take our advice.

Aloha
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