[Coral-List] fragmentation/Propogation

Todd Barber reefball at reefball.com
Wed Aug 6 08:22:33 EDT 2003

Hi Yuri (And Michael) & List,

The Reef Ball Foundation has been working for several years with coral fragmentation and propogation techniques.  We have worked with a wide variety of species including Fingers (Many species of Acroporas, and Oculina including deep water species in 250 meter+ water depth and many species of Porites), Massives (such as Faviida), Lettuce (such as Leptoseris Cucullata), Star (such as Stephanocoenia Michilini), Solatary (Caryophlliidae) [YES, we have even managed to succesfully divide a single polyp into two!), Tubes (such as as Cladocora Arbuscula), Flower (smilia fatigiata) and many species of soft and fire corals (millepora alcicornis).

We have developed a high speed/low effort fragmentation and transplant method that involved the use of setting the corals into a tiny concrete plug (the size of a standard 30 cc Medicine cup) in a special pH neutralized 3 minute setting concrete usually done the same day the imperiled corals are collected and then setting them onto Reef Balls that have pre-formed plug holes to fit these plugs exactly. (We use a 2 part underwater epoxy to seal the joint for better grow-out onto the substrate). 

Even with volunteers, this method has yielded high survivial rates (80-90%) and with scientists/experts we get over 95% survivial rates. The only corals that require more than a few hours to locate, plug and transplant are some species of soft corals (not the Gorgonians) which must be grown in an aquarium for attachment to the plugs for a length of time (usually about 6 weeks).

The BIG advantage of this method is that it requires very little underwater work time...which is one of the largest costs in doing Reef Restoration work.

Fragment sizes vary according to the type of corals you are using.  With volunteers, we limit them to fragements no larger than what fits into a 35 MM film canister.  With experts/scientists we use larger fragements but this requires special training as larger fragments need to be oriented correctly to the currents and light source.  
We do a 3-7 day training course for groups that plan on using these methods which includes instruction on specific coral types, coral ranges (light, temperature, etc), ethics (imperiled corals only transplanted within 30 miles of the original source), etc. etc. 

We have done coral projects/training in Curocao, Bahamas, Maldive Islands, American Somoa, Kuwait, Oman, Indonesia, Broward County Florida, Manatee County Florida, Malaysia and used similar plug techniques with Oysters in Maryland.  Future projects are planned for Antigua, Barbados, Cancun, and many others. (See our Reef Ball World Mapping System to find out about projects in your area...go to www.reefball.org then click World Mapping System).

If we can help in any way, just let us know.


Todd Barber
Chairman, Reef Ball Foundation, Inc.
President, Reef Ball Development Group, Ltd.
6916 22nd Street West
Bradenton, FL 34207
941-752-0169 (Office)
941-752-1033 (Fax)
941-752-0338 (Personal)
941-720-7549 (Cell when traveling)

reefball at reefball.com

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Yuri Latypov" <ltpv at stl.ru>
To: "coral-list" <coral-list at coral.aoml.noaa.gov>
Sent: Wednesday, August 06, 2003 4:57 AM
Subject: [Coral-List] fragmentation

> Dear listers,
> Who had experience of artificial resettlement of corals by fragmentation?
> What minimal size of a colony is necessary for this purpose?
> What species have the maximal growth rate?
> Many thanks,
> Yuri Latypov
> _______________________________________________
> Coral-List mailing list
> Coral-List at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
> http://coral.aoml.noaa.gov/mailman/listinfo/coral-list

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