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Old 11-29-2005, 11:23 PM   #1
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Jumping Into Corals (A Few Questions)

I've has a 75g tank established now for almost one year. I've currently got 260w of PC lighting, 75lbs LR, (also have a penquin bio-wheel), and have a foxface, 2 chromis, and a tang. I'm looking to add some mushroom coral and some zoos. I'd like to know if buying from a LFS is better, or ordering online? (Not sure if it's tough to make that one day trip wrapped in that little box) Other question is, how does one acclimate a coral into the tank? (Does it need to visit my hospital tank for a month, or does it go right in?) Thanks for the help!
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Old 11-29-2005, 11:39 PM   #2
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I'd like to know if buying from a LFS is better, or ordering online? (Not sure if it's tough to make that one day trip wrapped in that little box)
How you think the fish store gets their corals? liveaquaria.com saltwaterfish.com and others have a guarantee on there livestock. Most LFS do not.

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how does one acclimate a coral into the tank
Drip acclimation is the way to go for corals. Nice and slow.

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Does it need to visit my hospital tank for a month, or does it go right in?)
Corals can have ich or other parasites in the rock or water they are in even though they are not the host. There is always a slim chance of introducing something to your tank. I do not QT my corals but it is definitely a risk. Make sure you do not put water from the shipping bags into your tank.
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Old 11-30-2005, 08:21 AM   #3
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Eric Borneman's book, "Aquarium Corals" is a good start IMO. It'll tell you about corals and their care as you take this "jump".

Check out my profile for corals in my 72g with the same light you have. P.S. - my Xenia is a jungle now. Think about that one for a bit. Lot's of pruning, and selling back to the LFS @ $8 per frag (attached to small rock they give me for free). They sell it for $25.

Also, has your hospital tank ever had any copper in it? If so, don't put your coral in there. I have been very lucky not to introduce parasites to my main thru coral or rock/coral, but others have in (I think) rare instances. Mine goes straight into the tank.
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Old 11-30-2005, 11:25 AM   #4
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Your lighting will be great for most softies and LPS corals. I would consider a bulb change if it have bee around a year before you add corals. Ordering on line has its pros and cons. Pros...you can save a lot of money if you order multiple items. Ordering one does not really save you anything when you tack on shipping. As mentioned, some online stores have a warrenty on the livestock. Cons...you do not get to hand-pick your corals. You need to devote an entire day to waitng at home for the delivery (as I am doing right now). that is a pain. I have two packages coming from liveaquariua today. One is listed as on the truck and out for delivery and the other one is still listed as scheduled for delivery but delayed due to ciircumstances beyound their control. Whatever that means. Check out www.liveaquaria.com for some pretty good coral starter packs.
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Old 11-30-2005, 11:57 AM   #5
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The foxface may nip.
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Old 11-30-2005, 12:09 PM   #6
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Right, the foxface may nip the corals, which is something to consider. I do not purchase corals online. However, if I had a tank like brian, I would probably order online becuase of the money you can save while doing so. The benefits of buying from a LFS is that you can view the peice youre buying before you make the purchase, and also the coral is not shipped in 50 degree water over 2 days, which makes me very nervous. Many online stores offer arrive alive, but I think it boils down to how large your tank is, how many corals you're buying at once, coral availability in your local area, and personal preferance. I think online buying is a great idea and there are many great companies but there are risk/rewards for each option.
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Old 11-30-2005, 12:13 PM   #7
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I just got a shipment of two acroporas and a maxima clam, a day late (thanks to FedEx). The water they were in was extremely cold, a little cloudy and starting to get real nasty. I am drip acclimating them now, and hopefully all will be OK. If you mail order them, be sure to be at home when they arrive so they spend as little time in the box as possible. Get them into the acclimation procedure ASAP, and you should be OK.

Like mentioned before, almost all LFS get their corals via shipping. But then again, we dont have to buy them if they die during the shipping.
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Old 11-30-2005, 12:17 PM   #8
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I would like to add to this and say that while ordering corals online is somewhat cheaper (if you buy a lot at one time), buying corals in the LFS supports their efforts and also one main thing, you get to see what you are purchasing, not getting a surprise when you open the box. I find buying in the store is better also for size of frags.. most that I bought online have been very small and disappointing to say the least. JMO....
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Old 11-30-2005, 12:57 PM   #9
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I wish some of the online shippers would consider the damp method of shipping. I had a link that explained it quite well and have read many stories of tremendous success.

It involves shipping the coral in a bag and wrapping the coral with a damp paper towel. From my understanding, this prevents the "cloudy water" problem and allows superior gas exchange during shipping, as opposed to being submerged in an air tight baggie for 3 days. The way this works, is that many corals and reefs get exposed during low tides and they do perfectly fine by shriveling up and retaining moisture.

Something along those lines but it is a VERY interesting method.
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37 gal all glass
50lb LR
3' fine sand bed 1x Orange Stripe Prawn shrimp goby, 1x sixline wrassemated pair of true percula clowns, 1x CBS shrimp, 2x peppermint shrimp, 1x pistol shrimp, 1x tiger tale cuke, ~20+ snails, ~10+ hermits, 1xserpent star.
green Bubble coral, hammer coral (8 heads!) ,various Zoos,green finger leather, green star polpys ,shrooms
175w 10k MH
28w actinic 03
2x maxi jett 1200
Prizm skimmer (modded)
Hagen powerfilter(for running carbon 24/7)
nano arctica chiller
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Old 11-30-2005, 06:23 PM   #10
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I bet some online shippers would be more inclined to that method if they were sure that it worked right...I wouldn't mind having two of the same corals shipped in the two different methods and seeing which coral fared better during and after shipment and acclimation...I'm sure if there was substantial proof of their well being, there would be a lot more places doing the damp method..

My LR was shipped like that, with the damp method, and I had very little die off, and lots of life including some small corals..seemed like a great idea!
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