View Full Version : Invert Compatibility

01-09-2012, 04:35 PM
I'm currently cycling a 29 gallon aquarium and I have a very good idea of what sorts of fish I want, but I'm not fully decided on my invertebrates.

Only think I know for sure I want is an emerald crab, fire shrimp, and some cleaner shrimp

Things I'm considering eventually once the tank is mature and I've had more experience are Bubble Tip Anemone, Lettuce Sea Slug (I'm still researching this one, I'm told it's not a true nudibranch, and if it's as impossible as the velvet or purple and yellow, I won't get it), sea cucumber (again, researching and not sure), lobster, sea star and clams.

My main concern is that I get nothing that would eat one another or corals whenever I should add them, so I was hoping to brainstorm or get a chart, since I've not really found any such chart on invert compatibility. Any input is appreciated!

01-09-2012, 04:59 PM
IMO, anemones in a 29 gallon would be a challenge. The below link should help explain what I mean.


As you have stated, you have to be careful with adding different types of shrimp. Not all of them are compatible. I'm never had different types of shrimp at the same time so I can't offer any helpful advice there

I have had great luck with Spiny Star Astraea snails (Astraea phoebia) in both of my reef tanks. I would suggest looking into adding some of them once your cycled. I have found them to be reef safe.

I had to remove my emerald crab from my 90 gallon when he started to pick at my SPS. I think that is not very common at all, but I think you can get the odd one that will crawl all over your corals and stress them out. Its just a risk you should be aware of.

01-09-2012, 05:04 PM
Yeah, I'm not sold on the anemone, especially since I've read they should be put in before you put in any corals.

What I'm tentatively thinking about is a crocea tridacna, marble seastar, lettuce sea slug (if research pans out, I'm very cautious about things labelled sea slug).

And I'm not sure about a lobster given the size of my tank and their potential aggression. But my mind remains mutable for now.

Shame about your crab. I've always loved emerald crabs, they're so cute.

Also, I should note: my tank will be mostly open top

01-09-2012, 06:08 PM
I have a blood red shrimp and a pair of cleaners, they don't like each other but they also don't fight. They just don't hang out together.

01-09-2012, 06:20 PM
Thank you, Sheamurai! I appreciate that.

Also, was browsing live aquaria and noticed Condy Anemones aren't too big. Would those work? And if so, is there a danger of eating any of the other inverts I've listed?

01-09-2012, 10:42 PM
I think a 29 gallon is a little to small for clams. Most get rather large fairly quick and really sap your calcium and alkalinity down. I've know people to keep them with good success in small tanks, you just have to make sure to keep your calcium, alkalinity and mag up

01-09-2012, 10:51 PM
According to liveaquaria, the crocea only get six inches, max.


01-09-2012, 11:03 PM
As labjab stated,its about the amount of cal and alk they use. In a small tank you would have to stay on your toes. Clams are cool but have you ever seen a really well filled out open brain coral? The colors are awesome ,they get eyecatchingly large and you can feed them meat! [shrimp meat] Much easier to keep too.

01-10-2012, 01:12 AM
Well, I'll reconsider it and do much research. If I were to do it, it'd be muuuuch later when I feel more comfortable monitoring and manipulating the calcium and alkalinity.

01-10-2012, 01:13 PM
Just a couple quick things, the fact you have to add a nem before any corals is b/c they tend to wander until they find a spot, therefore if you have corals everywhere chances are the nem is gonna wander into them lol so that's no fun, if you want to keep a nem in a 29 it'd be a challenge regardless of the type only b/c they are touchy when it comes to water params... however if you can keep really steady params i don't see any other obstacles besides size

Also in reply to Cliff SPS hungry emerald crab, I've had a bunch in my tank and none have developed a taste for corals, just bubble algae which they get rid of extremely efficiently (mind it's not like peppermint shrimp and aptasias, meaning it isn't a hit or miss, they have always eaten the bubble algae). However you should note that if you have more than one crab in that size tank they will not get along!! I had four at one point, one was a female and it turns out the other three were male, so now I have one huge male (with only one claw since he lost the other one in battle) two other dead crabs and a female who lays a batch of eggs every now and then lol

Other than that I really don't have much experience with any of the other live-stock you're talking about