[Coral-List] method to store and transport coral samples

Kirsten Mckimmie iamthekirsten at hotmail.com
Sun May 4 03:44:50 EDT 2008

Dear Knowledgeable People,

I am a master student working with corals in Vietnam.  I need to transport coral samples, preferably by courier post, back to Sweden.  Eventually I will need to enumerate zooxanthellae in coral tissue samples, which brings me to my predicament:
1)       I need a method to preserve and store the samples for transport which will not damage the possibility to identify the zooxanthellae from the coral tissue.  It will not be necessary to identify the zooxanthellae on any level greater than simply counting them.  
2)      In order to have the highest chance of obtaining results from my samples, I ask if it is best to transport samples which are (a) small pieces of coral (tissue and skeleton) chipped from the replicates, or (b) a slurry of removed coral tissue (no skeleton) from a the whole of each replicate.  
The time frame for which the samples need be stored is approximately 3 months, where refrigeration is not available for the first month. 
I am very thankful for any suggestions you might have.
Kirsten McKimmie
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