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Goniopora Micro-propagation

A small two polyp Goniopora grown from a piece of tissue

A small two polyp Goniopora grown from a piece of tissue

 How small is too small? For coral, I think there is none too small to be loved and cared for. The challenge is that past a certain size, the smaller they are the harder time they have surviving. For over a decade, I have been refining my craft of growing coral from asexually propagated fragments smaller than newly settled coral larvae. Coral are remarkable creatures, and their cellular biology allows them to survive even at these minuscule sizes. A large coral colony has a more robust immune system that matures with size; coral cells in a large network have an easier time growing into polyps and colonies of polyps, but it is possible to grow a full animal from colonies of cells, or even one cell. Coral are rife with stem cells, and in fact many of the various cell types in their bodies can revert back to stem cells, the only exceptions being MORE

Blotched/Borbonius Anthia Care Info


The Borbonius Anthia is most commonly referred to as a blotched Anthia and it is one of the most prized of all reef fish. Because of its unique pink and yellow coloration, the Blotched Anthias has become very popular. Since it is a deep water Anthias, it requires a slightly lower temperate tank. They max out at about 6 inches in full adult form, so they should stay in tanks larger than 90 gallons. Lots of live rock should be in your tank for Blotched Anthias to thrive. The rock will provide lots of cover from lighting and areas to hide if spooked. Blotched Anthias should be fed multiple times per day with a variety of meaty foods such as mysis and brine shrimp. It can be somewhat aggressive so be sure that your MORE

Possible Tsunami Debris-Drifting Fish Now Held at Oregonian Research Facility

Photo by opencage. CC by 3.0.

Photo by opencage. CC by 3.0.

 What an understatement it is to say that the devastating Japanese tsunami of 2011 constituted a major ecological disturbance. Having lived on the Oregon coast at that time and having seen the massive amounts of debris that littered our shores in its aftermath, I can attest that people there were for a long time recovering items that drifted across the Pacific from Asia. It is at least conceivable that some Asian fish species (whether as juveniles or adults) were able to invade North America via the flotsam and jetsom. Indeed, five barred knifejaw or striped beakfish (Oplegnathus fasciatus) were discovered in a lost Japanese boat that turned up in Long Beach, Washington in 2013. One of these specimens was turned in to the Seaside Aquarium (where it reportedly continues to thrive to this very day). And now, roughly two years after this first sighting, the species has again been taken from the Northeast Pacific. In this case, a single specimen had been captured in a crab pot by fishermen near Port Orford, Oregon. This animal was successfully transported alive to a holding system under the care of a buyer before being moved to the quarantine facility of the Hatfield Marine Science Center (up in Newport) to be evaluated by Oregon State University aquatic veterinarian Tim Miller-Morgan of Oregon Sea Grant. MORE

Review: TMC V²Pure Advanced RO System

Arguably one of the most critical components of any reef system, the humble RO Unit sometimes doesn’t get the attention it deserves. Sometimes a hobbyist may end up selecting a unit that ‘seems’ up to the task without really researching it. Once in place RO Units can also be ‘taken for granted’ and, as a result, actual performance under ‘typical’ home operating conditions (membrane efficiency, actual GPD, ease of assembly etc) is sometimes overlooked. In this review we’ll take a closer look at TMCs V²Pure RO system and see how it stacks-up against other units we’ve used. MORE

Summer Course at BIOS to Focus on Coral Reef Fishes

BIOS-MArine-Biology-Reef-Fish-scuba02
An upcoming course in coral reef ecology, offered by the Bermuda Institute of Ocean Sciences (BIOS), will give university-level students a unique opportunity to “gain hands-on experience with modern research methods.” Using the ultimate wet lab–the ocean itself–participants will learn valuable skills such as scientific diving and modern molecular research methods. These skills are meant to augment instruction on reef fish anatomy/classification acquired in a decidedly more traditional classroom setting. The aim is to produce a more focused and competent generation of coral reef fish scientists. Co-instructors Dr. Gretchen Goodbody-Gringley (of BIOS) and Dr. Luiz Rocha (of California Academy of Science) will cover topics such as anatomy and physiology, phylogeny, social systems, movement, feeding, reproduction, recruitment, growth, population ecology, community ecology, fisheries biology, recruitment, larval biology, herbivory, cleaning, and nocturnal behavior and data analysis. MORE

Reefs Magazine Reviews “…Diseases of Marine Fishes”

In the latest issue of Reefs Magazine, editor Randy Donowitz published a review of The Salt Smart Guide to Preventing, Diagnosing, and Treating Diseases of Marine Fishes. He discusses the overall format, types of information included, and how the knowledge included in this resource can benefit saltwater aquarium enthusiasts at large.The majority of the book is concerned with environmental and husbandry issues that affect fish health and the plethora of specific diseases that afflict marine fish. Cause, symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment are addressed for each disease. If you read these chapters carefully, many of the “mystery” deaths so commonly referenced in the hobby become a lot less mysterious.” – Randy Donowitz, Editor, Reefs Magazine Read the full review here – Book Review: Hemdal’s Diseases of Marine Fishes Related posts:Share this: MORE

Naso lituratus: a Sleek, Striking, Outstanding Fish for Spacious Marine Aquariums

Naso Tang, a.k.a Orangespine Unicornfish (Naso lituratus)Certain marine fish really make me wish I could afford to set up and maintain a much larger aquarium. Among these is Naso lituratus, the lipstick tang, aka the naso tang, tricolor tang, or orangespine unicornfish. Alas, this hardy, attractive Pacific species (according to Fishbase, the very similar Indian Ocean and Red Sea populations once regarded as N. lituratus are now classified as Naso elegans) gets much too big and is far too energetic for my 125-gallon FOWLR tank. Physical traitsN. lituratus is characteristically tang-shaped with a laterally compressed, oval-shaped body and elongated snout. On each side of the caudal peduncle, it sports two razor-sharp, permanently erected spines that warrant very careful handling (they can get entangled in nets easily) as well as vigilance against accidental contact whenever working in the specimen’s tank. The caudal fin is lyre-shaped, with males developing long, trailing filaments that extend from the tip of each lobe MORE

High Tech Animal Tracker Unveiled At Tennessee Aquarium

phoneThe Tennessee Aquarium has unveiled some new technology, the first of its kind in U.S. aquariums. There are microscopic wire-coded tags called Beacons which are implanted in Aquarium-reared Southern Appalachian Brook Trout and sonic tags that will show the locations of recently reintroduced lake Sturgeon. The Aquarium allows its visitors to be on par with world class biologists and scientists as they track rare animals around the World. Visitors at the aquarium will receive notifications when they are approaching ‘tagged’ animal habitats MORE

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