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Support (208)344-6163
E-mail leroy@garf.org
1726 Merrill St. St, Boise, ID, 83705
GEOTHERMAL AQUACULTURE RESEARCH FOUNDATION

Geothermal aquaculture Research Foundation has been able to collect, maintain, and propagate several hundred different strains of sps corals. During the last two years we have been researching production techniques that include symbiont recombination and axial corallite -growth tips- initiation. The growth tips of SPS corals in the genus Acropora are very important in the commercial propagation of fragments. By manipulating the brood stock corals we have been able to increase the number of salable frags.

GEOTHERMAL AQUACULTURE RESEARCH FOUNDATION

We have chosen a beautiful blue tip Acropora for a series of photographs that document the production of growing tips. Fragment orientation and controlled pruning are two of the methods that have produced the best results. The Blue tip Acropora that we are using in these experiments has an important growth characteristic that has made this work very easy to document. When we received this stag horn coral it was a dull green color. This strain of Acropora took about one year to start growing and when it did we noticed that each of the growth tips turned a beautiful florescent blue.

Because this coral has two distinct colors it makes it very easy to document axial corallite production. As soon as the Polyp has started to grow into an axial corallite it turns bright blue. There are several other types of coral that grow as fast, but the axial corallite is the same color as the brood stock.

One of the most important things that we are researching now is a phenomenon that has been noticed in many different invertebrates that divide or are fragmented in nature. The process that we are studying is called escape size. When I looked up escape in the dictionary I found this definition - To avoid capture, danger, or harm.

Escape size was explained to me by my teacher to make clear something I had noticed during the last several years of SPS coral production. We noticed that there were times when we would remove a fragment from a small colony of coral, and the fragment would often outgrow the colony it came from. When I asked my teacher why this happened so often he told me that there was a well-known process in marine biology called escape size. During evolution any coral that was broken into small pieces and was able to initiate a rapid growth were able to survive to produce offspring. I best understood this when he explained that escape size for sps corals may well be the size that is large enough that something will be left if a Parrot Fish takes a bite.

ESCAPE SIZE AND FRAGMENT ORIENTATION

Each distinct body type of Acropora has its own different optimum Escape Size. Cuttings that are below this size do not have enough polyps to start rapid growth. When too large a branch is used as the cutting the coral often does not go into accelerated growth. At GARF we have over three hundred strains of ornamental corals, and we're researching the proper size of cuttings for each of these strains.
GEOTHERMAL AQUACULTURE RESEARCH FOUNDATION

The Blue tip Acropora and in this article is of a medium branch size and it has tubular corallites. I will now explain the method that we use to produce multi tip colonies of this coral in the shortest possible time. The cutting is taken of this coral that is approximately 1 in. long. This cutting is mounted very close to the original colony with the growth tip pointed slightly down at what would be 08:00 on a clock face. GARF super glue is used to attach a group of these corals to a clean Aragocrete rock. During the last year we have been able to mount dozens of these cuttings in our brood stock tanks. The cuttings that are glued with a growth tip pointed down soon produces several axial corallites on the fragment. These fragments grow most rapidly if they are mounted closer to the light than the parent colony.

GEOTHERMAL AQUACULTURE RESEARCH FOUNDATION

This blue tip Acropora has morphed into a rapidly growing commercial coral and the new branches grow to about three-quarters of an inch in twelve weeks. The original fragment is carefully removed from the GARF super glue that is holding it. Super glue allows you to attach fragments in a few seconds, but more importantly unlike epoxy putty is very easy to remove the fragment. This is when we break each of the branches 1/2 of the distance to the tip.

The small broken branches can be glued to another rock. The original fragment with the branches removed is then mounted in the same location. When this fragment is glued it is mounted upside down so the branches are pointing toward the bottom of the aquarium. On this fast-growing blue tip Acropora the bottom of the branches are much lighter colored, and there are very few corallites.

GEOTHERMAL AQUACULTURE RESEARCH FOUNDATION

It is important to get into the habit of snapping Acropora branches instead of cutting them. By breaking the branches with a pair of needle nose pliers you produce a clean break. When Acropora branches are broken you often find that several of the corallites at the break have been split in two leaving the polyp exposed. On this strain of Blue Tip Acropora the surviving polyps first look like black dots set back slightly from the edge of the white skeleton. For several years we have been studying thousands of Acropora cuttings to learn what initiates axial corallite production. A major part of our research is the collection of over fifty-nine thousand digital pictures of our reef aquariums. We are now able to go back several years and watch cuttings as they grow into colonies. Sally Jo's and I have burned over one hundred and twenty five CDs, and soon we will be loading the pictures onto a 50 GB hard drive.

Producing Acropora colonies from a blue tip fragment

1. Glue original fragment with the tip pointing slightly down using super glue

2. After the first set of branches are one half-inch long remove the fragment.

3. Break one half of each branch and reattach the tips to a new rock

4. Remount the original fragment in the same place but upside-down.

5. As each new axial corallites develops into a branch remove the tips.

This method of fragment production works very well with almost all of the medium-sized branching Acropora. There are other methods that we are using to produce large branched Acropora and the brilliant colored Bonsai Acropora such as the brilliant purple small branch Acropora with the green polyps.

GEOTHERMAL AQUACULTURE RESEARCH FOUNDATION
REMEMBER - SAVE A REEF - GROW YOUR OWN

FOR THE LAST 5 YEARS WE HAVE WORKED VERY HARD TO PURCHASE, TRADE, AND SAVE AS MANY TYPES OF CORALS AS WE CAN.


IF YOU WANT TO PURCHASE SOME OF SALLY JO'S GREAT NEW CUTTINGS PLEASE CALL TOLL FREE 1-800-600-6163

We are having a special on all of the coral cuttings. WHEN YOU PURCHASE 5 AT THE REGULAR PRICE OF $100 WE WILL GIVE YOU TWO FREE CORALS!.

We will continue to provide the most current data on reef farming for both education and profit.


REEF JANITOR ORDER FORM

GREAT GARF SPECIAL - WITH EACH ORDER YOU CAN PICK ONE AVAILABLE CORAL FOR FREE

We will custom mix your Reef JanitorsTM from our great mix of algae eating snails and hermits.

PLEASE SEND ME
Red Leg Hermit Crabs for -- $2.98 each, plus shipping and handling
algae eating snails for -- $2.98 each, plus shipping and handling
Garf GrungeTM live sand activator for -- $5.00 per lb., plus shipping and handling

30 GALLON REEF Forty five reef janitors for only $1.00 each.
-- $45.00, plus shipping and handling
50 GALLON REEF Eighty two reef janitors for only $1.00 each
-- $82.00, plus shipping and handling
100 GALLON REEF One hundred fifty reef janitors for only $1.00 each.
-- $150.00, plus shipping and handling

For us to fill your order, please enter your name, E-mail and phone numbers and we will call you to take down the size of your aquarium so we can help you order the proper mixture of reef janitors and Garf Grunge. We will ask for your mailing address and payment information. Thank you!! Alternatively, you may also print out and either mail or fax your order to 208-344-6189





 

JOIN THE RESEARCH FOUNDATION
You can support our research and learn more about reef aquariums and wetlands
1726 Merrill St.
Boise Idaho 83705
U.S.A.
Email: leroy@garf.org


GEOTHERMAL RESEARCH REEF AQUARIUM LAB

1726 Merrill St.
BOISE IDAHO 83705

SAVE A REEF - GROW YOUR OWN

CALL TODAY AND YOU CAN MIX AND MATCH ANY AMOUNT OF SNAILS AND HERMITS FOR ONLY $1.00 EACH. LeRoy


REEF PICTURES SPONSORED BY REEF JANITORStm

corals for sale

corals for sale

WE DID IT - we set up our long needed merchants account
so we can take credit cards at 1-800-600-6163

CALL TODAY AND YOU CAN MIX AND MATCH ANY AMOUNT OF SNAILS AND HERMITS FOR ONLY $1.00 EACH. LeRoy

ALGAE CONTROL CENTRAL
REEF JANITORS ALGAE CONTROL CENTRAL

Use this site to solve your reef aquarium algae problems, and help support our research!!!


Many of the rare corals are offered to our members for 2 years before they are put on sale. We will soon have an E-mail list that will list the rarest color forms of sps corals and soft corals such as Xenia and Mushrooms.

THE RESEARCH FOUNDATION HOME PAGE
You can support our research and learn more about reef aquariums and wetlands
1726 Merrill St.
Boise Idaho 83705
U.S.A.
Email: leroy@garf.org

GEOTHERMAL AQUACULTURE RESEARCH FOUNDATION
TO ALL OF THE LARGE PICTURES OF OUR REEFS
PLEASE VISIT THESE PICTURES OF THE WEEK


We recieved these nice e-mails about the JanitorsTM and GrungeTM

Delivered-To: algae-garf-LEROY@GARF.ORG
Date: 22 Aug 2000 13:46:02 +0000
From: "Mark DeFrancisco"
To: leroy@garf.org
Subject: THANKS FOR EVERYTHING

Hello Leroy,
I just had to write you to thank you for everything that you and your staff have done to help me create such a beautiful reef tank. Let me start by saying that I would never have done business with any internet company in the past. I am very careful about how my money is spent. YOUR BEAUTIFUL PICTURES ON THE WEB SITE CONVINCED ME TO GIVE YOU A TRY. BOY AM I GLAD I DID!

I started out by purchasing some garf grunge and reef janitors. The janitors have completely cleaned my tank and are busy working every day. I had an algae bloom that I could not control, and now, in only a few weeks, it is not only gone, but the tank is spotless!

The grunge is the most beautiful substrate I have ever seen! I have found numerous little corals and sponges growing in my tank, and I am experiencing a coraline algae bloom much faster than thought possible. Also, every experienced reef keeper that has seen my tank wants to know what the heck is that? Being used to seeing plain sand or crushed coral, they are delighted and mystified by the beauty! It has also added a level of stability and overall health to my tank that is amazing!

Next, as you know, I have ordered a few shipments of corals from you. I can't believe how fast they grow, and how beautiful they are! This is of course in addition to the rare species that you offer. Never in a million years could I have found the rare and different corals you have sent me. The pet shop, or reef "experts" would never have most of these beautiful rarities!

As a matter of fact, my local coral supplier has seen my tank and he cannot believe his eyes! He has told me that with over thirty years in the reef aquarium business, never has he seen such a beautiful tank! The "show" tank in his store is very pale by comparison!

I have told him that thanks to some real professionals in Idaho, this type of tank could be a reality for anyone! I am sure he will order from you soon, as he is most jealous of my aquarium, and has to have some for his own!

I will send you some pictures very soon. I am sure that you will agree, this is truly a beautiful, healthy, thriving, 90 gallon reef aquarium. I owe most of it to you and your staff!

From grunge, janitors, magic reef dust, and your help in recommending food and additives, everything I followed from what you have suggested has helped my tank achieve more goals than I ever expected! THANKS AGAIN FOR EVERYTHING! I CANNOT WAIT TO RECEIVE MY NEXT ORDER, VERY SOON!

Mark Defrancisco
Trenton, New Jersey


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