[Coral-List] Methods for nubbinising tabular corals?
capman at augsburg.edu
capman at augsburg.edu
Sat Mar 13 00:54:19 EST 2004
I honestly can't say one way or another whether superglues are
absolutely non-toxic in an aquarium, but I can say that superglues
have been in widespread use in closed system coral reef aquaria for
*at least* 10 years (maybe more like 20?), by both hobbyists as well
as people who make their living propagating corals for the aquarium
trade. These aquaria typically house not only many species of
thriving corals, but also a diversity of fish and invertebrates
(including sponges, worms, echinoderms, molluscs, crustaceans, etc.)
I have never heard anyone expressing concerns over the safety of such
glues in an aquarium (not even in the online reef aquarium forums
where people obsess excessively about the minutia of reef aquarium
husbandry...debating the pros and cons of different salt mixes,
debating the pros and cons of trace element additions, worrying about
the buildup of toxic metals in reef systems over time, etc...). My
personal experience has been that zooanthids do not like to be glued
using superglue (I'm not sure this is a toxicity issue...I'd bet that
any adhesive attached to the soft tissues of zooanthids might cause
problems???), and I don't think this technique is going to work at
all well for soft corals (e.g. Xenia), but I have never seen any
problem with stony corals.
In fact, for very small fragments superglue is greatly preferable to
epoxy putty because coral fragments need to be embedded more deeply
into the epoxy putty, and any living tissue covered by the epoxy dies
of course. With superglue, just a drop of glue between the coral
fragment and substrate is sometimes all you need if the coral
fragment is small, thus little if any live tissue needs to be covered
by the glue. Superglue does not work all that well underwater
though. I have managed to use it to glue onto underwater surfaces at
times, but it is really much better to do the gluing above the water
when using superglue. Epoxy putty can be used underwater of course.
Literally thousands or many hundreds of thousands (actually, probably
a whole lot more than that) of stony coral colonies have been started
using superglues to attach small fragments to surfaces. I myself
have started hundreds, with no obvious problems of tissue recession
at the interface between the glue and live tissue. This is a
well-established, very standard, and very successful method.
My impression regarding the skin hazard has always been just that it
can be very easy to accidentally glue your fingers together with
superglue, and detaching your fingers could then damage your skin.
And I would think that having anything (spilled glue, or whatever)
stuck firmly to your skin is possibly going to cause some skin
Incidentally, it is my understanding that certain types of superglues
are now used routinely instead of sutures in some human surgeries.
>I do have some questions about using superglue....(I prefer using
>epoxy putty or clay cementing substances)....
>How safe are these superglues?....
>Most of the superglues I have come across have been labelled as
>harmful/toxic to skin. When using superglue has your student seen
>any reaction in corals ? if not the whole fragment...at least near
>the area of superglue application......
>The lab in which I work, has a previous aquarium manager as
>caretaker and he recomended me to use epoxy putty or clay as they
>are more safer and are better cementing substances.
>Thanks for the information.
>"the role of infinitely small in nature is infinitely large"-Louis Pasteur
>Kochi University, Faculty of Agriculture
>Lab. of AQUa. Environ. Sci. (LAQUES)
>Otsu 200, Monobe, Nankoku-shi
>783-8502, Kochi, Japan
>alt. id: shashank at cc.kochi-u.ac.jp
>phone: 81 090 8285 9012
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