Manage nuisance algae, the environmentally conscientious way with ORA® Aquacultured Variegated Pincushion Sea Urchin! This extremely effective herbivore rapidly consumes nuisance algae to help keep your reef aquarium system naturally healthy and clean.
The ORA® Aquacultured Variegated Pincushion Sea Urchin originates from the tropical waters of the Western Atlantic usually found roving shallow sea grass flats and other sandy substrate. To properly house your urchin, provide large amounts of live rock for ample hiding places and sufficient room to forage. Mainly active at night, the Variegated Pincushion Sea Urchin generally stays hidden in caves during the day, though it may make a burrow in thick substrate.
While roaming the aquarium in search of food, the Variegated Pincushion Sea Urchin will frequently display an interesting "covering behavior". Whether for camouflage or protection from UV radiation the Variegated Pincushion Sea Urchin can be observed holding onto small rocks, shells, and pieces of macroalgae with its tube feet.
Keep in mind, live rock formations need to be stable and able to withstand the movement of the urchin wedging itself in crevices. Though generally solitary in nature, the Variegated Pincushion Sea Urchin will tolerate others of its own kind. Maintain ideal water quality as the Variegated Pincushion Sea Urchin will not tolerate high nitrate levels. Poor water quality will cause it to lose its spines. Like many invertebrates, the Variegated Pincushion Sea Urchin is sensitive to high levels of copper-based medications.
If there is insufficient algae for it to graze on, the diet should be supplemented with dried seaweed.
Approximate Purchase Size: 3/4" to 1-1/2"