[Coral-List] coral bleaching: response to Goreau

di ha bethead345 at hotmail.com
Thu Jun 1 07:04:49 EDT 2006

Dear Tom and Margie,
As someone who sits on both sides of the fence (research and aquarium keeping) the information and knowledge know on both sides is interesting/varied and not well communicated. Yes many aquarium owners in the begin know little about feeding corals, however with the high cost of purchasing each piece the last thing you want (and can afford) is for the coral to die. When I was in working in the aquarium trade I instructed/taught each customer how to feed the coral they had bought. I know of a number of shops (In Australia) that sell "green water" (marine algae cultures) and rotifer/green water mixes by the litre as well as a number of commercial products for feeding coral and inverts (that in some case won't be removed by protein skimming well that is what the bottle said). For the case of large corals Euphyllia's, cataphyllia's and favities/favia hand feeding is done, placing small pieces of fish/prawn/octopus onto the tentacles. I did get some strange looks from customer when I explained what to do, however this was normally replaced by questions on their next visit like "what else can I feed my corals? we sat there for hours watching the coral eat the food! and what corals eat what food?"
As to how we share or learn from each other can be as simple as a researcher joining an aquarium club. A number have host nights where they all gather at a members house or at an aquarium shop and discuss new filtration ideas, refuge tanks being one of interest in Australia for the last few years, to natural condensed light vs 250 watt 20,000 kelvin metal halides vs fluoros as well as swapping coral fragments harvested from their home aquariums. Another possibility is publishing journals in aquarium magazines. With the advent of googling and scholar google some of the questions being raised by hobbists are highly technical. A copy of Charlie Verons "corals of the world" are a must for the serious aquarium keeper as are a number of the more technical marine biology reference books. As is identifying corals to the species level and learning how to propagate them.
Hope this helps and not raises more issues/questions

> Date: Thu, 1 Jun 2006 14:09:12 +1000> From: margiea at gbrmpa.gov.au> To: goreau at bestweb.net> CC: lyle.jnr at cairnsmarine.com; coral-list at coral.aoml.noaa.gov> Subject: Re: [Coral-List] coral bleaching: response to Goreau> > >    Dear Tom>    I  take  your  point  that  there  are varying levels of expertise and>    awareness  in  this  arena.  I guess my main point originally was that>    there  is  a  substantial  body  of  knowledge out there amongst coral>    collectors  and aquarists that might be of value to science - and that>    as  far  as I can see it has not really been tapped into. I'm a strong>    supporter  of collaborative efforts and lateral thinking because there>    is generally value to be gained by all participants in the process - I>    think  there  would  be  interest  on  both  sides for this particular>    dialogue  to proceed.  I would be interested to see if other "listers">    have any suggestions as to how this could be achieved.>    Best wishes>    Margie>    Thomas Goreau wrote:> >    Dear Margie,> >    I'm  a  field  man  who has never kept a tank, but it seems to me that>    awareness of the need for lighting, circulation, and filtering systems>    is in advance of understanding the importance of feeding among all but>    the  most  skilled  hobbyists. As you saw Sprung did not seem aware of>    it.  Several hobbyists have told me that they are aware of the need to>    feed for best results, but many are not.> >    Best wishes,> >    Tom> >    On May 31, 2006, at 11:01 PM, Margie Atkinson wrote:> >      Dear Tom>      I'm  no  expert  aquarist either, however these days the people (in>      Australia  at least) who keep corals tend to be those who have made>      the  effort  to  learn what is needed - generally starting with the>      easiest   species  and  with  experience  moving  on  to  the  more>      challenging  ones.  The  expense  alone  to set up a coral-focussed>      marine  aquarium  is  enough to deter most from venturing into this>      arena unless they are serious about doing it properly!>      Its  not  just about knowing whether a species needs feeding - that>      is  the  easy  bit  -  the  technology  available  to keep aquarium>      lighting  at  appropriate levels, along with specilised filtration,>      temperature   control,  control  of  water  movement  (and  habitat>      requirements  generally),  as well as knowledge about interspecific>      interactions  has  all  changed dramatically in the last decade and>      these  have  been  big  contributors  in  the  ability  to keep the>      "difficult"  species alive. Post harvest handling is also important>      and standards in this area have improved as well.>      Best wishes>      Margie>      Thomas Goreau wrote:> >      Dear Margie,> >    I  am  no  aquariast,  but  I  think  that  one reason many corals are>    regarded  hard  to  keep alive in tanks is that so many people falsely>    think  they  don't need to be fed. The really successful coral growers>    all appear to recognize that feeding is crucial.> >    Best wishes,> >    Tom> >    Thomas J. Goreau, PhD>    President>    Global Coral Reef Alliance>    37 Pleasant Street, Cambridge MA 02139>    617-864-4226>    [1]goreau at bestweb.net>    [2]http://www.globalcoral.org> >    On May 31, 2006, at 10:12 PM, Margie Atkinson wrote:> >      Dear Listers>      I  agree  with  the  concept  of  starting a dialogue between coral>      researchers  and  coral  collectors  and  aquarists  -  it  is long>      overdue!>      I  work  in a management capacity with the commercial coral fishery>      on  the  GBR  and  have  seen  that  there is a wealth of knowledge>      available  from  these  collectors  and  the  aquarium  industry in>      general.  Unfortunately  there seems to have been little in the way>      of    shared    forums    between    the    two    sectors.   Coral>      aquarists/enthusiasts  often  share  their  knowledge  through list>      serves,  online discussion groups and club meetings and newsletters>      -  rarely  through  the  published  (scientific)  literature.  Most>      scientific  papers dealing with physiology and ecology are not user>      friendly for the lay person so are unlikely to have been discovered>      by aquarists.>      I  realise  also  that  in many parts of the world commercial coral>      collection   has   a   bad   reputation   for  causing  significant>      environmental  impact,  which  may have contributed to the apparent>      lack of engagement between the two sectors.>      The  knowledge  base  for  keeping corals in aquariums is expanding>      exponentially  and  many species that, a few years ago, were deemed>      difficult  to  keep  are now relatively easy - I'm sure some of the>      industry  observations  that  have  led to these developments could>      help  ecologists  and  physiologists  refine  their  hypotheses and>      experimental  designs to better understand the mechanisms involved.>      Also,  people  who  keep  coral  in  domestic  aquaria  tend  to be>      extremely  passionate and observant about the occupants and recount>      extraordinary   tales  about  what  the  corals  do  under  various>      scenarios  - maybe consideration of these "outliers" may assist our>      understanding of the fundamental processes that still elude us!>      Another  area  where  there  is considerable scope for intersection>      between  researchers  and  the  aquarium  industry is that of field>      observations.   On   the  GBR,  coral  is  collected  via  a  small>      well-managed  fishery  that  uses  best  practice  approaches. Many>      collectors  on  the  GBR  have been in the industry a long time and>      have  a  strong  sense  of  stewardship. They dive regularly (often>      daily)  in places that scientists generally don't go  - not just on>      the  reef  but  in inter-reefal areas, so they have a good feel for>      broad  coral  community patterns over quite long timeframes as well>      as  for  the  behaviour and distribution of a substantial number of>      coral species.>      Some  of  the collectors already feed into the GBRMPA's Bleachwatch>      program   providing  regular  reports about the health of the reefs>      they collect from and the particular species that are bleaching and>      to  what depth etc. It has been my experience also that many of the>      favoured  aquarium  corals  that  are assumed to be "rare" on coral>      reefs,  especially  in  shallow  water, are sometimes very abundant>      inter-reefally  on  sediment  flats - again, places that scientists>      may  not  dive  very often. This observation is supported by recent>      remote  controlled  video  work  coming  out  of  the  AIMS  Seabed>      biodiversity project.>      I  see  that  Shashank  has  mentioned Julian's book - another good>      reference for aquarium corals is:>      Borneman,  E.H.,  2001:  Aquarium  Corals: Selection, Husbandry and>      Natural  History. TFH Publications, New Jersey and Microcosm Books,>      Vermont pp 464.>      Regards>      Margie>      shashank Keshavmurthy wrote:> > Dear Listers> It is interesting to see that finally the debate> on the coral energy aquisition has surfaced...> > most of the resarch papers till now say that> there is major contribution of Carbon form> zooxanthellae to corals....but, when in need the> corals can adapt to the carbon aquisition> heterotrophically....???????> > We all need to get lots of information from> aquarists around the world....> > If you will see the book written by "Julian> Spring" on the aquarium corals...it gives the> mode of nutrition as autotrophy and heterotrophy> to most of the corals described in his book....> > we as researchers may just dont know what really> is happening out there....> > here i agree totally with Tom....we still need to> get lots work done so as to understand the true> feeding habits of corals...> > Recent paper by "Palardy et al, MEPS (2005) 300:> 79-89, Effects of upwelling, depth, morphology> and polyp size on feeding in three species of> Panamanian corals"...looks at what corals are> eating...> > Collaboration with aquarists is needed to really> understand about the energy aquisition in corals> in more detail...> > more and more people are looking at zooxanthellae> since it is believed to be "the source of Carbon"> and "the factor for/of coral bleaching> response"...> > question is how much is the symbiotic dependency?> there are many studies showing that the corals> can survive without the presence of> zooxanthellae...it may not be for long time and> may not be see in natural enviroment....but we do> see many sea anemones in coral reefs, bleached> and still surviving....> > i think it is like, do corals want to feed on> zooplankton when they loose zooxanthellae?> does it take some time to switch between the> modes of nutrition acquisition?> combination of stress factors may be disturbing> the switching between the modes> > for instance, when kept in aquarium tank in> dark..it is only one stress and corals can> survive with the zooplankton being fed...that> means  they are able to switch between the> modes..?> > hmm...its pretty complex out there..and coral> physiology is more and more challenging...this is> my view...> > Regards> shashank> > > > > "the role of infinitely small in nature is infinitely large"-Louis Pasteur> > > Keshavmurthy Shashank> phD candidate> Kochi University, Graduate School of Kuroshio Science> Laboratory of Environmental Conservation> Otsu 200, Monobe, Nankoku-shi> 783-8502, Kochi, Japan> alt. id: [3]shashank at cc.kochi-u.ac.jp> phone: 81 080 3925 3889> > __________________________________________________> Do You Yahoo!?> Tired of spam?  Yahoo! Mail has the best spam protection around> [4]http://mail.yahoo.com> _______________________________________________> Coral-List mailing list> [5]Coral-List at coral.aoml.noaa.gov> [6]http://coral.aoml.noaa.gov/mailman/listinfo/coral-list> > > --> Margie Atkinson> Project Manager> Fisheries Issues Group> Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority> PO Box 1379, Townsville, QLD 4810, Australia> Tel: (61) 07 4750 0735     Fax: (61) 07 4772 6093> Mob: 0438 387 303> > --> Margie Atkinson> Project Manager> Fisheries Issues Group> Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority> PO Box 1379, Townsville, QLD 4810, Australia> Tel: (61) 07 4750 0735     Fax: (61) 07 4772 6093> Mob: 0438 387 303> >    Thomas J. Goreau, PhD> >    President> >    Global Coral Reef Alliance> >    37 Pleasant Street, Cambridge MA 02139> >    617-864-4226> >    [7]goreau at bestweb.net> >    [8]http://www.globalcoral.org> > --> Margie Atkinson> Project Manager> Fisheries Issues Group> Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority> PO Box 1379, Townsville, QLD 4810, Australia> Tel: (61) 07 4750 0735     Fax: (61) 07 4772 6093> Mob: 0438 387 303> > References> >    1. mailto:goreau at bestweb.net>    2. http://www.globalcoral.org/>    3. mailto:shashank at cc.kochi-u.ac.jp>    4. http://mail.yahoo.com/>    5. mailto:Coral-List at coral.aoml.noaa.gov>    6. http://coral.aoml.noaa.gov/mailman/listinfo/coral-list>    7. mailto:goreau at bestweb.net>    8. http://www.globalcoral.org/> _______________________________________________> Coral-List mailing list> Coral-List at coral.aoml.noaa.gov> http://coral.aoml.noaa.gov/mailman/listinfo/coral-list
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