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I picked up some hydra to keep for local schools.  When fed baby brine 
shrimp they grow like crazy.  If you starve them they seem to dissapear 
after a week or two.  However, they must put out a resistant form that 
waits until food is good because I have had a tank with none appearing 
that when I started to feed live brine the hydra magically reappeared.

In one tank I bred blue gouramies.  As the fry were very young the hydra 
fed on some fry.  As time went on the hydra increased dramatically 
because of feeding live brine.  Then slowly the hydra started to vanish.  
Obviously the blue gouramies were getting large enough (about and inch or 
2 cm) to eat the hydra.  Bottom line is no more hydra.  I had another 
infested tank that I used some to control also.  What I don't know is if 
down the road I have no gouramies in the tank and start feeding baby fish 
live brine if the hydra will again appear.  But for now I would say that 
a very effective way to control hydra is to use blue gouramies.  

--Earle Hamilton from northern Michigan where coral once grew