TREVOR 06/04/03 3:00,
It all started with Eddie's yogurt. He loves this
particular brand, and so over the years many yogurt
cups have accumulated in the cupboards and cabinets of
This semester, I set out with two goals: find new ways to propagate coral and get rid of those old yogurt cups.
Well, one thing led to another and now I have a great way to propagate mushroom coral and now I've used up all our old yogurt cups, and I'm trying to encourage Eddie to eat more yogurt- those containers are very useful.
Mushrooms are a beautiful soft coral, they are hardy and colorful. However, mushrooms can be difficult to propagate. They take a long time to reproduce simply by fission, dividing in two, and cutting individual mushrooms up into pieces and putting them into a tank to attach is usually a wasted effort, because the pieces will float into the pumps and be destroyed, or disappear under some dark rock.
To prevent this, I put the mushrooms in the bottom of a yogurt container. Of course, you don't have to use a Western Family brand vanilla yogurt cup. Any container will do as long as its made of a smooth, nontoxic plastic. Make the container about half an inch tall.
Fill the container with rubble, or large pieces of gravel. I use CaribSea rough grade. These should be clean, meaning that they start out with no algae or anything else attached to them. If you're using fresh gravel, be sure to rinse it off first. The mushroom pieces will attach themselves to these pieces.
Next, get several full-grown mushrooms. Cut the mushroom head off of the rock leaving a piece of the stalk behind. This stalk will regenerate, growing a new mushroom. You can use these pieces as brood stock.
You'll want to cut the mushroom head into pie-shaped pieces. It is important for each piece to have some of the central stalk. This stalk contains the stomach of the animal and is the part that attaches to the rubble.
Place these pieces in your container. Then, put a piece of bridal veil netting over the entire container. Use a rubber band to hold this covering over the container. This bridal veil netting will prevent the mushroom pieces from being swept out by the current.
This entire container should be put somewhere that will be free of strong current and light. The mushrooms will attach fastest in a relatively quiet corner of the aquarium.
For me, the next part is the hardest. You have to wait 3 to 4 weeks before all the pieces are attached. Do not try to skimp on time and open the container early. You'll en d up with just a bunch of loose mushroom pieces. Patience is a virtue!
Finally, you can take your mushrooms out. I use SallyJo's super glue, a reef-safe cyanoacrylete adhesive, that is available for sale here at GARF, to glue them onto plugs. These plugs can then be placed into an aquarium where they will grow into adult mushrooms.
Build up your mushrooms and other soft coral with this GARF's soft coral special: 7 hardy soft corals for $100.
FOR THE LAST 5 YEARS WE HAVE WORKED VERY HARD TO PURCHASE, TRADE, AND SAVE AS MANY TYPES OF CORALS AS WE CAN.
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.
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|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.|