how do I know if I have more?


New member
I took out my 3" mantis from my 80gal soon to be fully setup reef and just wanted to know how can I tell if there are more of those shrimps in the tank?

there is nothing but the liverock in there for now!
Listen for clicking sounds at night. Put some small hermits in the tank, just 2 or 3 and see if they are attacked.
ok, so I hear clicking, but can't seem to pin-point which exact rock it is coming from! could it be something else other than a mantis?

There has to be a way to tell if you have a mantis other than listening! What if you listen and you can't hear anything and then after you place your live-stock they start disappearing?

I am really worried, and I can't wait to get started, but I am majorly confussed and stressed-out by the fact that I might have more mantis in there!

please help a stressed-out fellow aquarist.

This is going to be tricky, but examine your live rock and look for newly bored out holes. When I had a mantis shrimp (purchased on purpose for a specialized tank) he would dig new holes in the live rock day and night and I could watch as plumes of dust were ejected from the live rock as he burrowed his way through.

You *might* try a mantis trap, most LFS will have them on loan, but I've heard mixed results.
how often do the click/make sounds?

I have been sitting infront of the tank for an hour now, and no sounds!

Could this mean I was imagining/hearing things? or could it be a different animal? or what is going on?

The clicking could be from the Mantis hammering out a new home, it could be at night as it goes searching for prey, it's not a regular occurance.
Same issue...

Same issue...

I started a 215 reef in June of this year with live rock from Tampa Bay Saltwater. On Tuesday, my wife and I trapped a three inch mantis shrimp in a rock, immediately pulled that rock out and doused him with tap water. He quickly came scurrying out - his next stop being our local sewer system - it was a beautiful sight as he helplessly went round and round the bowl. Since we set up the reef, we have pulled out 5 mantis shrimp, each time hoping we had gotten the last of them. I have lost a clown, a wrasse and numerous crabs, etc. I hate those damn ms. Yet, I still hear some snapping in the tank, much like the author of this thread described. Do any other creatures make that awful snapping sound? I don't hear the same volume of popping heard prior to removal of the last little beast. With any luck, I am rid of those pests for good but if not, I've become damn good at finding and killing them....enjoying as each one dies a slow, painful death....
Dont' kill them, many people here on RC (myself included) will pay good money for a MS.

As an aside, Pistol Shrimp make loud popping sounds.