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FAQs about Soft Corals of the Family Nephtheidae Stocking/Selection

Related Articles: Soft Corals of the Family Nephtheidae, The Soft Corals of the genus Dendronephthya Soft Corals, Order Alcyonacea

Related FAQs: Nephtheids 1, Nephtheids 2, Neptheid Identification, Nephtheid Behavior, Nephtheid Compatibility, Nephtheid Systems, Nephtheid Feeding, Nephtheid Disease, Nephtheid Reproduction/Propagation, Soft Coral Propagation, Alcyoniids, Dendronephthya, Paralcyoniids, Nidaliids, Xeniids, Soft Corals/Order Alcyonacea,

Dyed, and likely dying... Vote with your wallet... "No sale".

Newbie - Corals... Nephtheids to return     3/16/16
Hi - I came across your site while searching various forums. I am getting all sorts of different answers so I hope you can help?
<Let's see>
I bought these 2 corals yesterday - my lfs said they were easy
<Ah no.... these Nephtheids are NOT easy to keep
as they know my tank has recently cycled and I am new to all this. When I posted the pics on a forum to ask their names all sorts of replies came back but mostly saying they are nps and very difficult to keep / need hand feeding regularly throughout the day.
<Tis so>
I contacted my lfs today and they said they are called and they said:- "These are Neptheid soft corals, sometimes known as cauliflower corals. They don't require brightly lit conditions but benefit from regular addition of filter foods such as phytoplankton and small animal plankton”.
<This is factual as well...>
Is this correct information - as I have had so many mixed comments, please can you advise me how to care for them and where to place them in my tank (95L Kent bored).
<Better to have you read; but I would return these animals ASAP; they won't be alive here for long.
READ: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/nephselfaqs.htm
and the linked files above; and elsewhere on WWM re "easy" corals. Bob Fenner>
Thank you very much

Chili coral... does it regenerate  3/13/10
Hi all!
<Hi Debra!>
So the odd question. How do you know if your Chili coral is a goner?
<The sad fact is, most of these are 'goners' as soon as they leave the sea.. it really is just a matter of time>
Although I questioned it, a local LFS told me that this chili coral was very easy to care for.
<It is not>
So I bought it.
<The oft repeated phrase/s..>
It seemed to do okay for a while, but now it has no polyps at all.
<Mmmm, have you read here? http://www.wetwebmedia.com/nephtheidfaqs.htm. Water flow could be an issue'¦ apparently it needs the 'right kind'>
From what I've read through the FAQs here it may have expelled its spicules.
<Mmmm, more likely they are retracted>
However, since the sponge itself was still holding its colour very well and continuing to expand a little at night and shrink during the day, I've kept it tied upside down in my Sun Coral tank.
The odd thing now is that it seems to be getting 'bumpier' where before it seemed to be smoother. There appears to be little 'sticks' coming out.
I don't know enough about their makeup to understand what's going on. Do they ever 'regenerate' polyps?
<Given the right conditions, yes, these will come out, grow 'regenerate'.>
This coral has been in this tank for over three months with no polyp extension.
<Then it is starving. The no.1 reason why they often die off. Even if it was showing polyp extension, it would probably starve anyway. Does your system have a refugium? Essential. Live food is what this animal needs>
The sun corals are fed at least every other night if not every night.
The tank also houses a High Fin Goby and Pistol Shrimp.
The tank only receives ambient room light. When there were polyps I was target feeding it a mix of phyto, coral food mix, Cyclop-eeze, oyster feast, a bit of meaty bits ground fine (shrimp, clam, fish from seafood market frozen first), Marine snow, trying to cover various food sizes figuring it would reject what it didn't or couldn't eat, hopefully consume the rest.
<Ok, all of these are good foods, but no substitute for the real thing here>
I was running a skimmer and small filter with carbon. At another LFS a staff person said not to run those because I could be pulling out all the nutrients the Chili coral needs.
Also, when I told him they weren't opening very often and that every time I noticed the polyps were open I bombarded them with food, he told me that maybe I'm feeding them too much and to feed less so they'll come out more.
<No, this animal needs to be fed constantly, all day, not once a day. Live food, from a refugium, is the only way to do this>
The tank is a 6 gal Eclipse with a 5 gal refugium.
<Too small.. there could be many potential reasons here. Temp/ salinity fluctuations, lack of food, nitrates.. this is a difficult task you have set yourself.. try experimenting with some different flow patterns.. maybe a Hydor Koralia>
The Sun corals were kept in the Eclipse which was a refugium for another tank for over a year and when I upgraded rather than break it down
I kept it running as a non-photosynthetic tank.
<Fine for Sun Corals, which are easy, and are probably hogging all of the planktonic life here.. not so fine for a Nephtheid>
Bi weekly water changes of 1-2 gallons. Test weekly mainly alkalinity and calcium. Alkalinity is normally around 9-10, and calcium runs around 400-440. Test Magnesium monthly, last test was 1500.
<Way too high -- this will irritate corals.. could definitely be a/ the issue/ contributing factor here>
I use Seachem Reef Builder in the top off water <I would not. If anything then just Kalk will do here.. dripped overnight only> and dose B-ionic alkalinity and/or calcium if needed.
Thank you in advance for your help and insight
<No problem Debbie.. do write back if you make any changes and see any results either way>

Carnation coral questions 05/19/09
Hello. I have a question. I have asked everyone and got a different answer from each. I bought 2 carnation corals the other day. A pink carnation and a pure white one. I did do research and decided to give them a shot. My only confusion is feeding. Everyone gives me a different answer. So I come to you for the final word. Thank you for you help.
<Are we talking the Dendronephthya carnation here? If so, we really don't know for sure what they eat... all we know is that it's virtually impossible to feed them enough of whatever it is they do it in an aquarium.  The longest I've ever heard of someone keeping one alive is maybe a couple years (with extraordinary effort!). Typically, they die within a few months.>
Thank you
Roy S
Sara M>

Re: Carnation coral questions 05/19/09
Ok then. Thank you. Well I guess I will give it my best shot and not ever buy them again.
<Yes, it's unfortunate we can't keep them in captivity better. I do wish LFSs would stop selling them to people. But don't feel too terribly bad, they grow back pretty fast in the wild...
Sara M. >

Creative coral mounting?    11/1/07 This well-meaning coral vendor sent me this "chili coral" which appears to be one of those impossible-to-keep azooxanthellate corals. It was a "free gift" with my actual order. <I abhor this practice> I know they were trying to be nice, but it never makes sense to me to send someone an animal they didn't ask for. I mean, now what am I supposed to do with it? I didn't have anywhere to put this thing, so I had to resort to this "creative" method of hanging it upside-down in an area of high flow (which I think is the only way to have any chance to keep them alive for more than a few weeks). What do you think? :-)Sara <We're in agreement... as usual. BobF>

Free Chili, no thanks

Is This Coral OK? ...Nephthea'¦ Not likely   10/21/07 I currently have a 75-gallon tank with a mixture of corals. I believe I have two tree corals in my tank also, but I was interested in what is called a pala Nephthea <Palau Nephthea?> which is a bright green color. I was wondering if this coral was ok for my aquarium and would not harm other corals? I do not know if this coral is toxic or not. I wanted to get your input before I bought the coral. <Nephthea, if what you are looking at is truly Nephthea, can be quite toxic. According to Sammarco and Coll (1987) there are 12 toxic species and 7 nontoxic species of Nephthea. Nephthea brassica is capable of moving at a rate of approximately 5 cm (2 inches) per week (LaBarre and Coll 1982), and has been observed traveling across Acropora hyacinthus, killing this coral along the way. Borneman (2001) states that this genera produces some of the most diverse and unusual compounds of all the soft corals. So to answer your question... Maybe... depends what specific species you have. And to add to it, Borneman (2001) suggests there are photo and non-photosynthetic species, but reports that this genus of corals generally have a poor record of survival in captivity.> Thanks LeAnne <Welcome! Mich>

Re: Is this coral ok ...Nephthea'¦ Not likely... Sarcophyton... better 10/22/07 <Hi LeAnne, Mich with you again.> Thank you for the information you sent me about the Palau Nephthea. <Welcome... hope it wasn't too much.> I have one more question which I have done research on but have gotten some confusing information. <OK, hopefully I can help.> I want to know if the yellow Fiji leather coral , also known as Sarcophyton elegans would be a good choice in an aquarium. <I guess the answer here is it all depends. This is generally a hardy aquarium coral and is a much better choice than the Nephthea as far as survival in captivity. But here again, you run into the problem of allelopathy. This is another one of those corals that can be highly toxic, in fact, it is one of the most prolific producers of toxic chemicals, and this genus has some of the most highly toxic of all species of corals (Borneman 2001). I want to make sure it's ok to put in my 75 gal aquarium before I buy it. <Depends on what other corals you have or want to keep. This genus of coral can easily kill off other corals and may even have toxic effects on fish as well (Borneman 2001).> Also I have read that clownfish like other corals besides anemones and I was wondering if this leather coral would be ok. <Clownfish have been know to host in Sarcophyton, but unlike the symbiotic relationship that the clown has with an anemone which I would also encourage you to avoid) this hosting behavior is typically not beneficial for corals.> Thank you <Welcome, Mich>

Re: Is this coral ok... Nephthea'¦ Not likely... Sarcophyton... better'¦ How to learn more'¦.   10/24/07 <Hi LeAnne, Mich with you again.> I'm sorry to bother everyone again, <No bother.> but I have one more question. <OK.>  Where can I look to find information that will tell me what is toxic and what is not, as well as, what corals I can put near each other. <The most useful book I have found on corals is Aquarium Corals by Eric Borneman. There is a chapter titles Secret Lives that is particularly useful. These charts are included in the Borneman book http://saltaquarium.about.com/library/blank/bl_CoralCompetition_1.htm http://saltaquarium.about.com/library/blank/bl_CoralCompetition_2.htmAn Article written by Borneman here: http://www.advancedaquarist.com/issues/nov2002/cw.htm You might try Googling "coral toxicity" as well.> I have coral books and look on the Internet, but mostly they tell you just how great they are for beginners, etc. thanks again! <You just need to use the right terms. If you scientific name of the coral you want to learn more about and toxicity you will likely learn what you need to know. Hope that helps. Mich>

Q from GrahamT & Rick O. on Nephthea.   1/28/07 Has anyone seen the green Nephthea available as of late? Here in Maine, we used to have a local propagator that supplied very colorful soft corals before they went off the map. Rick says he has had huge problems trying to get these coral in the past ten years, but I am unsure of the dedication he put forth into the search. Anyone with info will gain my gratitude. TIA -GT <Mmm... I haven't seen such except on the Net on any regular basis... But will post this query for others hopeful input... and want to tell you the nature of this field is that new collecting areas (like getting a new outboard...) open up surprisingly new varieties, species to collection... as does new aquaculture techniques, promises of income... BobF> Re: Q from GrahamT & Rick O. on Nephthea.  Can crew members follow their own instructions... Heeeheheheheeeeee... No!   1/28/07 <Hi Graham, Mich here, lets see how we can bust on fellow crew members today.> Has anyone seen the green Nephthea available as of late? Here in <M>maine, <Hehehehehe!!!! Please use proper capitalization when writing into WWM!!!! We are busy and it is time consuming to correct your mistakes!>  we used to have a local propagator that supplied very colorful soft corals before they went off the map.  <Have you tried a new map???> Rick says he has had huge problems trying to get these coral in the past ten years, but I am unsure of the dedication he put forth into the search. <Heeheeee!!! Did you do a Google search like the directions say before writing into WWM????>  Anyone with info will gain my gratitude. TIA -GT <Have you checked www.reefcentral.com ?  I don't know that you will find a wholesale propagator, but you should be able to find individuals with relative ease.  A search for green Nephthea over the past 6 months gave the following results:  Please read the following links... just kidding... but there are some which may be useful to you...> Thread Starter Forum Replies Views Last Post FMAS Frag Swap Meet Sponsored by Eco Reef Aquarium chrisaggie Florida Marine Aquarium Society (FMAS) - Miami/Ft. Lauderdale 148 2502 01/27/2007 09:45 AM by A.T.T.R Show me your ... Green Nephthea reefnewbie54321 Soft Coral Keepers 94 5601 01/24/2007 11:27 PM by drummereef anybody using the current SunPod??? brett7768 Lighting, Filtration & Other Equipment 8 154 11/28/2006 10:00 PM by xraydoc ~Lets see your nano aquascaping~ Wooden Nickel Nano Reefs 694 68894 11/15/2006 01:55 AM by Riona Can Someone ID This For Me? Reefdrumz Soft Coral Keepers 21 540 11/07/2006 12:15 AM by ChAoTiCrEeFeR4U Thanks for hosting, Mimi gflat65 Middle Tennessee Reef Club (MTRC) 12 119 11/01/2006 09:20 AM by coral_reefer_25 "Frag" of the Month - September '06 Skipper"¢ "Frag" of the Month 19 2502 09/22/2006 11:27 AM by Randall_James any1 got any leathers for sale ??? reefer5060 Middle Tennessee Reef Club (MTRC) 4 116 09/12/2006 05:23 PM by greystreet41 diverrad spotted! LCGoldman Long Island Reef Association (LIRA) 284 2918 09/10/2006 12:38 AM by Reef Junkie I think my tanks ready Aquarist Guru Northern Valley Reefers (NVR) 9 175 09/01/2006 10:59 PM by Aquarist Guru New to Buffalo nilo Upstate Reef Society 23 203 08/23/2006 10:41 AM by stupac21 Paly's, leather, green tree in Wi will ship kass03 Propagated Corals & Tank Raised Livestock Selling 30 965 08/22/2006 06:14 PM by kass03 *** Colt Coral Frags *** For Trade castorpollux Colorado Rocky Mountain Reef Club 15 194 08/17/2006 08:35 PM by Ebmorri HTH  I'll stop being a PITA now  -Mich>

R3?: Q from GrahamT & Rick O. on Nephthea   1/30/07 Has anyone seen the green Nephthea available as of late?  Here in Maine, we used to have a local propagator that supplied very colorful soft corals before they went off the map.  Rick says he has had huge problems trying to get these coral in the past ten years, but I am unsure of the dedication he put forth into the search.  Anyone with info will gain my gratitude. TIA -GT <<Graham...I have a friend in the trade who has a couple parent colonies of a very nice fluorescent green Neptheid ( http://www.aquariumspecialty.com/catalog/product_info.php?products_id=68).  Check it out and see what you think.  Eric>>

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