A man who was trying to rid his reef tank of a colony of Zoanthid corals by pouring boiling water on them landed himself and his family in the hospital, according to a report on the PubMed.gov website. The report says the 37-year-old and his family inhaled steam that emanated from the aquarium after he poured the boiling water on the corals. This steam, according to the report, caused leucocytosis, or an elevated count in white blood cells, and palytoxin poisoning in himself and his family. Palytoxin poisoning can occur when ingesting certain seafoods as well as when handling Zoanthid corals and Palythoa corals. The family eventually recovered.
Zoanthid and Palythoa corals are some of the more popular corals that people keep in their reef aquariums. It is recommended that rubber gloves be worn in any event in which the corals are handled, and boiling water is not recommended to get rid of these corals.