Category: Aquarium Invertebrates

  • Brittle Starfish Care: The Ophiuroidea Family

    Brittle Starfish Care: The Ophiuroidea Family

    The brittle starfish (Ophiuroidea) or brittle star group either enchant or repulse you. They follow the expected pattern of five “limbs,” but they lack that adorable star design. Instead, you get long, snaking legs that move in every direction – sometimes independently. But these echinoderms bring a particular fascination with them. And if you’re one…

  • Powerful Pistol Shrimp: Snapping, Symbiosis, and More

    Powerful Pistol Shrimp: Snapping, Symbiosis, and More

    When it comes time to choose your reef tank invertebrates, you’re spoiled for choice. And you’ll find plenty of popular options. But have you considered the pistol shrimp? This amazing crustacean often slides under the radar with hobbyists (a tongue-in-cheek joke if you aren’t familiar with the species). It isn’t as famous as the cleaner…

  • Peppermint Shrimp Care Guide: Lysmata wurdemanni

    Peppermint Shrimp Care Guide: Lysmata wurdemanni

    Peppermint shrimp (Lysmata wurdemanni) are brightly colored, inexpensive saltwater reef shrimp species often recommended to help control Aiptasia anemone populations. But they’re also fun, engaging, easy-to-care-for invertebrates that add color and variety to your reef tank. If you’ve never considered these crustaceans before, let’s dive a bit deeper into their quirks, how to care for…

  • Vermetid Snails: Destructive Aquarium Pests

    Vermetid Snails: Destructive Aquarium Pests

    Ask any aquarist to rattle off a list of their most dreaded pests, and you’ll find vermetid snails. These invertebrates wreak havoc on reef tanks in no time at all. Even worse, trying to find and eradicate them can pose a challenge. Good thing you have this handy primer to everything “worm snail!” Table of…

  • 6 Sensational Saltwater Shrimp Every Aquarist Loves

    6 Sensational Saltwater Shrimp Every Aquarist Loves

    Every aquarist wants that little bit of elegance and character for their reef tank. And these sensational saltwater shrimp do the trick. Not only do you get some vibrant colors and patterns (always a plus), but you’ll also gain some extra activity and help around the aquarium. (Form AND function – how can you go…

  • Serpent Starfish Care: Ophiuroidea

    Serpent Starfish Care: Ophiuroidea

    When people think of starfish, they call to mind the five-pointed echinoderms you learn to recognize as a kid. So you might overlook serpent starfish at first glance. These brightly colored members of the group trade in those “stubby” arms for long, snake-like limbs. It’s the perfect touch to a saltwater aquarium craving a unique touch.…

  • Sea Hares: Facts, Eggs, Ink, and Care

    Sea Hares: Facts, Eggs, Ink, and Care

    If you’re looking for a challenging, unusual invertebrate to add to your tank, take a look at the sea hares. Due to the possible toxins these sea hares can release and their specific care requirements, the species are considered difficult to keep. It’s recommended that only expert-level hobbyists attempt to take on these sea slugs.…

  • 23 Interesting clean-up crew invertebrates that eat algae

    23 Interesting clean-up crew invertebrates that eat algae

    We spend a lot of time, energy, and money in this hobby to create and maintain the proper aquarium conditions to keep our fish and corals happy. It just turns out that those conditions are also generally quite good at growing algae. Adding one or more of these interesting invertebrates for your clean-up crew that eat…

  • The Bristle Worm: Your Ultimate Guide to This Pest

    The Bristle Worm: Your Ultimate Guide to This Pest

    If you have ever seen a bristle worm in your reef tank, you probably agree they can be ugly little creatures. I’m pretty sure we’re genetically programmed to get creeped out by millipede-like invertebrates. And once you start looking, you’ll find TONS of energy and discussion about this lowly polychaete in reef aquarium circles. The…

  • Harlequin Shrimp Care Guide

    Harlequin Shrimp Care Guide

    Harlequin shrimp (Hymenocera picta), in my opinion, are one of the most beautiful marine invertebrates in the world. Just take a look! They are mostly white with colorful spots all over their mantis-shaped body. In general, they grow to a maximum size of 2 inches. (Females come out significantly larger than males) The three most…