Tank inhabitants


New member
Oddly enough, I did a search and came up empty in this forum. Perhaps I was using the wrong words, but I was looking for tank inhabitants that woulnd't be bothered by my new Mantis (see other post on ID help)

The feather duster and pencil urchin is there and appear to be unharmed. Several very small hermits, and if he eats them, that is just fine by me, varied diet and all that.

There are also some screw-head sized starfish in there as well as the usual live rock.

Perhaps an emerald crab or brittle star? Or will he view them as food?

Just curious what you have in your tank that works out.
My spearer lives with a damsel (been a week now but the big damsel killed the smaller one =/) 2 SPS, 5 blue leg hermits and a few astrea snails. I plan on adding more coral and what not. Anything that i can place higher on the rock where he doesnt venture seems to be alot happier. Xenia creeped down onto the base of his cave and he buried it in rubble. I dont plan on adding anything but corals at this point.
Course, a smasher would view alot of this differently.

I just condemned my emerald crab to the Mantis-tank-of-Doom (it was tearing apart my red feather dusters!). When I put the crab in the tank, there was an epic 10 minute battle between Roy and the crab. The crab lost a leg, but scurried to the highest rock in the tank and hides in the macroalgae.

The 1st damsel I put in the tank lasted 2 weeks, the next damsel lasted a week. Roy does live peacefully with a little nudibranch that I was given by a LFS cause it ate soft corals. I put some pulsating xenia in there for it to eat, I have more than enough xenia to last it's lifetime 10 times over.

I've read here in the forum that some people have kept serpent stars sucessfully. Smashers may attack/eat urchins. Roy certainly eats the micro hermits I put in the tank but surprisingly enough leaves the snails alone. He gleefully pummeled a peppermint shrimp within 2 seconds of it being in the tank.

You would think from Roy the Mantis' behavior that I don't feed him. I DO! I feed him every other day, as much as he can eat (I remove the leftovers) :rolleyes:

I think I'm going to try a serpent star next.
My mantis seems to eat anything in the tank. Fish, hermits, snails and well anything. He also gets some frozen shrimp, crawfish tail, and mussle. He also gets a live fiddler crab every week. He also does not like when i move things is his tank. I use a little bit of plexy as a hand gard to move things he has buried.

Also Kara if you have extra xenia i would really like some and will pay shipping. e-mail me at Jace

i want xenia too :)
anyways, my George... damn him...
hes only ate 2 outta 3 hermits put in, and 1 outta 6 snails....
hes fed every day (sometimes missing days, but hes ok with that...)
for me, i have a feeling i could put almost anything in the tank with him and it would be fine
except if it was orange or yellow, cause hes my experiment subject, and is fed using orange and yellow feeding 'sticks'

so i'd say go for it, but it probably depends on if your mantis plays nice with others!!!

but, to be more specific:
if yours is a spearer, it will be fine
if yours is a basher, don't get a crab!!!!
Ok, I'll be more than happy to share the Xenia! The mother colony just pupped a lot of baby xenia (under 1/4"), as soon as these little guys get bigger I'd be happy to figure out how to ship and then send them to you!
yup yup.....
how to ship... nice, warm box... (they have cheapish styrofoam ones in gas-stations, ect... if you want to, just cut away. I'm pretty sure you can get them at walmart and grocery stores too)
a little heat pack (NOT the ones for putting in gloves in the winter... too hot!!!)
a BIG plastic bag to ship it in.... more water the better i'd bet, that way it won't die from being self-poisoned...
other than that, i could ask people how to ship xenia, since they are supposed to be hard to ship....
i would think that you might have to keep them attached to a rock, so keeping the rock from rolling onto it during shipping would be a problem too....
I'd gladly steal some from you!!!!