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What is aquacultured?


slimy fish
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I have a question for everyone and I know this may start a heated debate. When does someone call a coral aquacultured? The reason I ask is that I have seen a few pics of corals bought at the CFM that are clearly just hacked off larger colonies that originated from the wild. I know everyone is just trying to make a living but to go and sell corals at a CFM that are clearly not aquacultured is kind of deceiving. I am very surprised Steve Tyree did not stop the sell of these corals. If I am way out of line, please pull this thread. I apologize up front to any I offend; I am just trying to get a meaningful discussion going on the definition of what is an aquacultured coral.

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From http://www.aquacorals.com/ShopWhatAreAquaculturedCorals.htm

 

Aquacultured corals are tank raised baby corals which are cultured from wild collected & cultured parent corals. Several propagation methods are used to attached the babies to pieces of live rock for easy placement in the hobbyist's & store display tanks. These "baby corals" then attach their tissue to the rock and continue to grow into an adult coral. "Cultured corals" are much hardier, disease resistant, parasite free and usually more colorful than wild collected specimens. The dilemma for wild collected corals is that they suffer greatly from collection, holding, transporting and handling practices. Many die before they even reach a dealer's &/or customer's tank. Often times these wild collected specimens contract bacterial infections or carry parasitic organisms which can decimate a hobbyists tank.

 

That sums it up pretty well. Aquacultured corals are from wild colonies. They have been grown and fragged and grown and fragged over time. There was nothing wrong with anything at the CFM IMO. Realistically speaking, you cannot have a reef tank if you don't get things off the reef.

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This is an excellent question to ask slimyfish (what a great screen name by the way), as our site is dedicated to the education of others. Impur hit it right on the head. As I have understood it, instead of the entire colony being ripped out, a small frag is taken and reproduced under controlled situations. This method has allowed our hobbiest and our experts to learn alot about the corals themselves so that they thrive in our tanks, and perhaps give insite to saving our reefs in the future!

 

Kris

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Let me give an example. A year ago I got a frogspawn, it had two heads. I don't know the whole history of this piece, but let us assume that it came straight from the reef, into a wholesaler, to the fish store, to the guy that bought it, then he sold it to me.

 

Over the course of the year, the two heads both split. Which are the original heads? I don't know. Then two of those heads split again, so now there are six. Which two are original? None of them? All of them? Does it matter?

 

I sold off three of those heads to different people. Did those heads come from the reef? Yes and no. The genetic material and about 1/6 of the body mass of each came from the reef, but as long as I retain two heads, I feel fine about trading/selling the others and calling it "aquacultured." They grew in my tank, used calcium that I provided to build the skeleton, I fed them food, I kept good light over them. They are growing and thriving in my tank.

 

I am doing a small part to help save the reef. Three other people have that strain of frogspawn, and they did not have to take it off the reef. Now if they all grow it and trade/sell it then the cycle of reef saving continues.

 

dsoz

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Everyone, thanks for the info. Its really nice this site allows for open discussion. I would like to add I do understand what aquaculture is but with some of the photos I have seen of CFM corals, there is clearly decades of skeletal growth attached to each coral. Even if one were to argue the coral contained some new polyps not grown in the ocean dose it truly fit the definition of aquacultured. Not trying to offend any vendors that participated in the show just trying to get fellow hobbyist to think about what should be considered aquacultured.

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