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Study Shows Corals Consume Microplastics

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Unfortunately, the solid plastic trash we often see in the ocean (bottles, bags, etc.) is only a portion of the plastic waste that has been deposited there. A considerable amount of waste may be present in the form of microplastic. Microplastics are basically miniscule bits of plastic that can be suspended in the water column. Though the environmental effects of microplastic pollution are not yet well understood, the consensus among marine biologists is that they pose a global threat to marine ecosystems. Researchers from the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies at James Cook University set out to see if corals (which are non-selective filter feeders) ingested microplastics. Corals from a clean area were placed in a contaminated area. After two nights, they were analyzed for the concentrations of plastics. Results indicated that the corals consumed plastic at a rate only a little lower than that of their natural planktonic food. Plastic materials were found engulfed in digestive tissue, suggesting that it may hinder a coral’s ability to digest its food. The team is now investigating what MORE

Cruise Line Pays $100,000.00 To Magic Reef Restoration Project

A-cruise-ship-anchor-severelly-damaged-the-coral-reefCarnival Cruise line has ‘donated’ $100,000.00 to the Magic Reef Restoration Project. This could be the first of many such donations. This most likely stems from talks between Cayman Island Government officials with the Cruise line regarding an incident which took place last August. While at port, the anchor was dropped outside of the regulated anchorage zone. More than 11,000 sq feet of endangered coral reef was crushed as a result of the incident. MORE

Coral City: Review


In this video I am going to simply do a personal review on the hot new documentary out called Coral City. It is made by a hip video studio/blog company called The Creators Project but it is the story of how two men, Colin Foord and Jared McKay of a company called Coral Morphologic aquaculture coral, create artwork through their stunning videos and pictures, while also trying to protect the native reefs in Miami from dredging. Take an exclusive look at the process behind Coral Morphologic’s living artworks, colorful reefs created using coral polyps native to Miami. Watch as the scientific art collective explores the visual storytelling potential of coral reef organisms through film, multimedia and site-specific artworks. Additionally, learn how rising sea levels, combined with government dredging projects, are impacting not only corals, but the entire fate of Miami. MORE

Elos Test Kit Nitrates – NO3

2014_03_elos_test_kit_no3_nitrati_001 Having already reviewed Elos’s tests for dKh, Magnesium and Calcium, today I present one of the most important tests for both fresh and marine aquarium tanks, the  Elos NO3 Test : nitrate.  MORE

An Award-Winning Coral Aquaculture Business Plan

Have you ever considered turning your reef aquarium addiction into a side business? I have. The reef aquarium hobby, like many hobbies involving livestock, is an enticing entrepreneurial opportunity.Successfully maintaining a healthy reef will result in an abundance of coral. That coral, if left to its own devices, will reward the aquarist’s hard work by making every effort to kill off its neighbors. To maintain harmony and prevent turf warfare in a mature, healthy reef aquarium, one must periodically prune back the coral colonies. Here is where the business opportunity emerges. What to do with the cuttings? MORE

Reef Threads Podcast #219

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It’s an unusual podcast this week in that we do what we’re supposed to do–talk about forum threads. We choose three posts in which people are having trouble/need help and actually try to help them. We talk about a fish-only tank, cycling issues, and an open-top tank. Download the podcast here, or subscribe to our podcasts at iTunes. Also, follow us on Twitter at reefthreads.—Gary and Christine

How to Ship and Package Coral For Beginners


In this CoralFish12g video I will teach the most simple and efficient way to ship coral. This is called the urine cup method. MORE

Parasite Responsible for Color of Popular Tetra

Photo by Oliver Knott.

Photo by Oliver Knott.

 Any aquarist knows that there are a lot of really colorful fishes out there. But, some really stand out. One such species is the bronze tetra (Hemigrammus rodwayi). It is collected from floodplains and coastal waterways of the Amazon River Basin in Brazil and Peru as well as Rivers in Suriname, Guyana and French Guiana. This otherwise unremarkable little characin can develop a shiny, golden metallic (and we mean metallic) sheen that is not really matched in the fish world. Its beauty is multiplied by the number of individuals in a shoal. Their golden glow is undoubtedly one main reason for the animal’s popularity in the ornamental fish trade. However, when fish farmers first sought to culture this potentially valuable species, it was discovered that captive raised specimens lacked the characteristic metallic luster of their wild counterparts. The usual culprits—diet, environmental conditions—were blamed. It took considerable investigation before it was determined that the bronze tetra’s coloration was actually derived from a much more unusual source.  MORE


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