Sign in to follow this  

Removing Blue Clove Polyps from DT

Recommended Posts


Eradicating Blue Clove Polyps with Fenbendazole 

After trying to control these little buggers, they finally won the battle and started spreading throughout my new display tank. Although blue clove polyps are very pretty in my opinion, they started growing over my Fruitloop zoas and interfering with the encrusting of my SPS. This was the final straw. I decided it was time to take drastic action.

After researching a bit, I found that years ago Fluke Tabs were the way to eradicate blue clove. The problem is those fluke tabs are not sold anymore. After a lot more reading, I came across threads where people had used the Fenbendazole in dewormer (Safeguard) to kill hydroids in tanks used to breed seahorses. Later individuals experimented with it in reef environments with mixed results. But what these experiments did note was effectiveness at killing many soft corals; to include, blue clove, star polyps, xenia, waving hand, and blue sympodium. On the bright side, it didn't effect zoas/palys, SPS, LPS, Clams, shrimp, or anemones. However, certain snails were at significant risk (Turbo snails).

After reading more, I was concerned about putting dog dewormer in my tank primarily because it was only 22% Fendendazole. This meant that 78% was OTHER stuff -- this really was the deal killer. Then I found "Fish Bendazole" -- 99% Fendendazole. I decided to place order. 

My order came in 2 days later. I was still nervous about putting it in my tank so it sat on my counter for almost a month. Finally, I decided to go ahead and give it a try.

From what I could find, 1 250mg packet of fish bendazole will treat 250 gallons. My volume is approximately 140 gallons.

My mixture:

  • 800ml of RO water
  • 250mg of fish bendazole (1 packet)

I shook the hell out of it and let it stand for a couple hours. Then I shook the hell out of it again. The mixture was very cloudy and does not dissolve very well. After the final shake, I let it sit for about 30 minutes. After it settled a bit (still cloudy), I used a turkey baster to dose 400ml directly onto the largest blue clove populations -- note: I did not pull the liquid from the bottom of the jar: I didn't want to get anything that settled out. This was a one time dose.

Carbon and Phosban reactor was taking offline. I continued to run the skimmer, but put the air intake under water.


25 Feb 17 - Dosed tank at 5:00pm

  • Tank has a cloudy appearance
  • Blue clove were irritated for a moment, but opened right back up
  • Everything else in the tank looks completely normal (I'm expecting Turbo Snails to die in the process) 


26 Feb 17 - 11:00am

  • Tank has cleared up to normal conditions
  • Blue cloves are obviously pissed off - polyps are smaller but open.
  • Everything else is showing no changes -- clam is open, shrimp out and about, fish normal, all other coral look like ever other day. :)

26 Feb 17 - 5:00pm

  • Blue cloves are really shrunk up -- really unhappy
  • Everything else in still good -- even the Turbo Snails are out and about (no effects)


27 Feb 17 - 6:00pm

  • Blue cloves are all closed up -- some seem to be turning a white color
  • Everything else still good

28 Feb 17 - 6:00pm

  • Blue cloves are still closed up -- some appear to be melting
  • Zoas/Palys that were crowded by blue cloves have opened up and look much better
  • Everything else looks great -- even Turbos


 1 Mar 17 - 6:00pm

  • Blue cloves are a bunch of blue dots on the rock - clearly in bad shape.
  • Everything else remains fine

I will continue to monitor; however, I'm extremely happy with the results. My guess is another week and they will be complete gone. Once I'm happy that every blue clove is gone, I will resume skimming and carbon/phosban reactor.

As a side note for new reefers, more is not better...slow and steady. Overdosing this product will likely have negative side effects. My guess would be snails and shrimp. Also note --- many softies may be effected by this treatment and the effects may be long-term (5 to 6 months...maybe longer). If you plan to have the corals I mentioned at the beginning of this post, DO NOT use this treatment.

Also this will deworm your fish. :)

Happy Reefing Everyone  :D

  • Like 1

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Nice write up. Good to know if i ever have blue cloves jump in and try to make a home in my tank. Now will it work on 19 year old boys, just irritate it enough to move out?

Sent from my SM-J700P using Tapatalk

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Update... 2 Mar

Still a lot of little blue dots on the rock, but a lot have just melted away. However, today I noticed a few zoas closed up (most of them are open as normal). This could be any number of reasons, but I decided to bring the skimmer online. I did leave the carbon/phosban offline. 

As a note of interest, the skimmer is very active.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

5 Mar... Nearly all the blue clove is gone. I have turned all the reactors / skimmer back on. 

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

So, I'm a week into this treatment. Nearly all the blue clove are GONE...I still have a few light blue dot on a couple rocks, but none of them are open. I would call the treatment very effective. On the March 2nd I did notice a few zoas closed up, but nothing serious. So, I restarted the skimmer and reactors (but no water change). Although I did not have big concerns about the treatment and I didn't do any water tests, I was thinking I might be having a slight increase in ammonia due to the die off. Hence the reason I turned everything back on, I also added a poly pad and reduced my nitrate dosing to 30 ml. 

Today, all my zoas are open and very happy (even look larger and brighter). All my other corals look normal (just like before the treatment or better). I do have 2 Turbo snails that look stunned, but the other turbos are moving about just like normal...Nerite snails are fine too. Today, I decided to go ahead and do a 20%+ water change...only because the blue clove are nearly all gone.

Hope this helps someone. Super inexpensive and effective.


Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Update: 13 Mar

Three weeks in...All blue clove polyps are completely gone. I believe I had a slight clam closed up, one SPS suffered some STN, Candy canes LPS don't look good, and I have some green algae. I stopped nitrate dosing for algae. Yesterday my clam opened back I think I'm in the clear. :)

On the bright side...ALL blue cloves are gone. It kills Waving Hand as well...I have some in the sump...GONE. 

As a note, I think I would have had some issues if I would have had much more die off. If you have a lot of blue clove, I would have Water Changes ready to go. 

Happy Reefing! 

  • Like 2

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

Sign in to follow this