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FAQs about Corallimorph Stocking/Selection

Related Articles: Corallimorpharians Cnidarians, Cnidarians for Small Systems by Bob Fenner,

Related FAQs: Cnidarian Selection, Cnidarians for Small Volumes, CorallimorphsMushrooms 2, Mushrooms 3, Mushrooms 4, Mushroom Identification, Mushroom Behavior, Mushroom Compatibility, Mushroom Systems, Mushroom Feeding, Mushroom Health, Mushroom Reproduction, Stinging-celled Animals

A gorgeous colony of Ricordea florida at Bao Le's shop in Milpitas, CA.

Nano Reef Tank Suggestion; stkg., moving stk. mostly        6/11/17
Bob and Crew,
As always I really appreciate your input. You have always been helpful and correct in your guidance.
I have a really quick question.
I have a 12 gallon nano tank that I am going to shut down since I transferred the Clown Fish that was inhabiting it to my main tank after the death of my male which was part of a paired female and male. Which by the way was an excellent suggestion.. The nano tank has one piece of rock with some mushrooms, base sand, a conch, and some snails. Is it OK that to transfer those into my reef tank or … .
<Highly like so; yes. I would take your time here though; transfer a cup or so of water between the systems daily for a week or two... to acclimate mostly the Mushrooms to and twixt whatever mainly Cnidarian life you have in the main system>
Thank you.
<Welcome. Bob Fenner>

polyps for a tank with no light but some indirect sunlight     5/29/17
Hi gang
Any suggestions for polyps or mushroom corals for a FOWLR tank with no light? One corner gets about 9-10 hours of indirect sunlight per day. Or is this simply a no-go?
<Mmm; do look about re warnings of using natural insolation... algae, heat... dark days; but some Corallimorpharians, Zoanthids; Clavulariids could go... Just keep your eye on them and MAKE SURE they're fed rather than relying on photosynthesis to keep them alive>
<Welcome. Bob Fenner>

Attn: Bob Fenner. Help w/ filling out import-allowance form, Australia, for Ricordea florida     2/25/14
Hi Bob,
I was hoping you would be able to assist me.
<Let's see>
I propagate Ricordea Yuma in Western Australia.

<Interesting... Have a friend, industry acquaintance (Dick Perrin, Tropicorium) who built his business on the Florida congener... And am generally familiar w/ issues of the use of ornamentals; clean list/s there>
I believe in trying to provide aquarium enthusiasts with a good supply of coral without raping the reefs.
<We are definitely in agreement>
Although my business is small every bit helps.
In Australia majority of the Ricordea's are found in Queensland.
Most of the quality Ricordea's found on Australian reefs go overseas along with a lot of the other rare coral as that is where the best market is.
Should a rare Ricordea get to the retail sector it usually stops there and goes into the shops show tanks.
<A matter of simple economics likely... There are parallels w/ fancy goldfish, marine angels and more... gravitating toward countries/markets that pay better, more assuredly>
I have been propagating for about 4 years now selling to people across Australia.
<Ah good. If I may; do you utilize some techniques; e.g. tools for cutting through siphonoglyphs... that you might share (that you don't consider proprietary) with our/WWM readers?>
I have made a few contacts with people overseas who propagate both Ricordea Yuma and Ricordea Florida.
Both companies that propagate are happy to assist and supply me with Ricordea's of both species.
<Ah good>
I have decided to try and get some of the quality Ricordea's back to Australia.
Currently it is illegal to import the Ricordea Florida into Australia however I have spoken to Fisheries and they are happy to look at my proposal when I submit one.
<I have read through the form you attached; for applying>
Although rare there are some Ricordea Florida spread across Australia and they are highly sort <sought> after.
Western Australia Fisheries have given me a list of questions asking me to write a report.
Unfortunately I have not been able to find much information in either books or on the internet.
Writing reports is definitely not my area of expertise.
I would have thought your staff would have written many reports similar to the one I require and possibly one relating to Ricordea.
<Heeeeee! Ah my friend. I don't have; have never had staff. We are a group of coming/going volunteers>

Do you have anyone there that would be able to assist or at least know of someone I could contact for assistance.
I have attached a copy of what is required.
Thank you
Chris Murphy
<Let's you and I go back/forth with the parts you can't find good/reliable-accurate input for. What specifically are you looking for on this form? Not all. Bob Fenner>

Small Marine Nano Cube With Mushroom Coral (not for the inexperienced aquarist) -- 03/20/11
While visiting LFS, found that there was a supposedly established 6 gal marine Nano cube for sale.
<<Such 'small volumes' can be difficult to maintain 'and certainly not for the beginning marine aquarist in my opinion, as so often touted>>
It has only mushroom corals.
<<A noxious organism, and often deadly in such a small volume of water if/when mixed with other inverts 'best kept alone here>>
The set up was pretty and quite tempting to put on my desk.
<<No doubt 'though I must admit to not being a fan of 'office' aquariums due to their tendency to be abused/neglected>>
When I questioned the extremely young clerk about maintenance, he said it would require only monthly water changes and little else.
<<Bunk'¦ If anything, more frequent (weekly) maintenance will be required as such small volumes of water 'Go South' much more quickly than larger volumes>>
Currently I only have a freshwater setup and I haven't owned a marine aquarium in nearly 30 years (F.O.W.L. R. back then-successful but sold it during move) but even with my limited and antiquated experience, his maintenance claims sound pretty light to me.
<<Indeed'¦ A lot has changed in 30 years; technologies have improved along with our understanding of both what/how to keep 'and what NOT to keep. I suggest you get a good book or two, as well as doing some research and reading here and elsewhere on the NET before making any sort of impulse buy. Here's a few links on WWM to get you started: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/fwsubwebindex/bookswwmsugg.htmhttp://www.wetwebmedia.com/AqBizSubWebIndex/ofcaqrelbiz.htmhttp://www.wetwebmedia.com/GoodBadMarLvstkSel.htm  , http://www.wetwebmedia.com/acclimat.htm , http://www.wetwebmedia.com/quarinverts.htm , http://www.wetwebmedia.com/estbiofiltmar.htmhttp://www.wetwebmedia.com/nanoreefsysart.htm  , http://www.wetwebmedia.com/small.htm
Do also follow and read among the associated links at the top of the pages>>
When I said so he replied it was so easy because the "corals only" set up required little care.
But that wouldn't stop evaporation changing salinity would it?
<<Nope'¦and any and all changes come very quickly in such a small volume>>
And I thought corals were sensitive to water conditions?
<<Some more than others, but yes>>
Anyway, I thought I would ask an expert before sinking money into this Nano venture.
<<I see it as three strikes against you at the moment'¦ a 'Nano' tank'¦ a planned 'office' tank'¦ and an 'inexperienced' aquarist'¦ I'm not saying this can't be done, but to avoid disappointment you really need to 'bone up' for a while before you set out on this venture>>
What would the optimal maintenance be for a 6 gal mushroom coral only setup?
<<Can be as varied as the animals kept in it (do check out the links provided)'¦but at the least it will need to be 'frequent'>>
Thanks for any reply!
<<Happy to share'¦ EricR>>

Beginner's Corals (Maybe not what you think) -- 12/08/10
Dear Crew,
<<Hey Sam>>
I am having a very hard time choosing a good beginner's coral suitable for a 28 gallon Nano.
<<Mmm yes, can/should require some thought beforehand -- as do any fish selections>>
I was initially looking at Zoanthids because of their aesthetics and hardiness,
<<Don't know that I would label them as 'hardy' myself. They are pushed on beginning aquarists as such, I know (same with Corallimorphs) -- but are better suited to at least moderately skilled/experienced hobbyists with a well establishes and stable system, in my opinion. I've seen many the new (and even not so new) hobbyist struggle to keep these organisms, especially as they try to amass aggregations of the differing varieties. And should they do well, there's often issues with excessive growth/overtaking of other corals -- especially with some of the Palythoa species>>
however after reading that (apparently) the palytoxin they contain leeches into the water under stress,
<<Allelopathy is indeed a prime consideration here>>
I'm not sure whether this would be a wise choice. It might be good to note that this Nano has 150 watt metal halide lighting in addition to some 462nm blue LEDs.
<<Metal halide is my fave lighting solution'¦can be configured to accommodate most any marine/reef system>>
Because it is a cube it is deeper than most 28 gallon tanks, however would this wattage be too intense for them, even towards the bottom?
<<This depends on several factors such as the depth at which the organisms were collected (difficult to impossible to ascertain), and whether or not you can adjust the 'height' of the light fixture. But for most of the systems I've seen that were 'dedicated' to this type of reef organism, less 'intense' lighting seemed to work very well>>
Or would I risk having them develop white spots and die off?
<<Even with the MH -- lighting is likely to be the least of worries here>>
The other I was really interested in are the Corallimorphs.
<<A yes, the other so called 'beginner's' reef organism. The problem I have with these is not that they are difficult to maintain (though Ricordea spp. are sometimes the exception), but quite the reverse. These organisms are often very prolific -- and being very noxious and aggressive, often prove quite deleterious to the other sessile organisms in the system. A new hobbyist, acquiring these on the advice of their LFS, often finds their system overwhelmed with such before long>>
I read that they too are hardy but that they are highly aggressive in terms of Allopathy.
Being that it is a 28 gallon would I be able to accommodate safely one of these mushrooms in addition to another hardy coral?
<<The problem is'¦it won't remain as 'one mushroom.' If you want to dedicate this tank to this particular genus then go for it -- if you want a variety of organisms, I would not add Corallimorphs>>
I can dose calcium, strontium, iodine etc. levels appropriately
<<Considering the size of the system, you can likely forego dosing and keep everything up'¦and in 'balance''¦with simple water changes. Should you decide to stock heavily with something that will deplete bio-mineral content, do test before adding anything>>
and adjust the flow so the main issues for me are whether these would be compatible in a cubic 28 gallon tank with 150 watt MH lighting, and of course which would be easier to deal with in the long run.
<<Both are trouble down the road in my opinion. Many hobbyists do keep them, and ultimately it's up to you to decide if you want to take on the challenge, but with your system I would recommend something like corals from the genus Montipora. There are branching species that once grown out to some size, would make for a stunning display in a system such as yours. Add to this a grouping (5-7) of small/smallish Cardinalfishes (Apogon leptacanthus, for example) to hover among the branches and the result could be quite spectacular. But honestly, there are many ways you can go here'¦ If you decide to pass on the Zoanthids and Corallimorpharians, keep searching for/researching what you think you might like and then feel free to come back for discussion re>>
Sorry for any questions that have been answered in the archives, however I can honestly say I read through the entirety of several articles before asking.
<<No worries mate'¦but do keep reading>>
Thanks for all that you do,
Sam Sutonovski
<<Is a pleasure to share'¦ Eric Russell>>

Hardy mushrooms 11/30/08 Hello Crew, Thanks for all the great information on your website! I was hoping you could offer some advice on hardy mushrooms for my 72 gallon bowfront tank. It has moderate to low lighting (110 W compact fluorescent and 40 W actinic bulb). I have been researching Ricordea Florida due to its low to moderate light requirements as shown on https://www.liveaquaria.com/product/prod_display.cfm?c=597+598+2724&pcatid=2724&N=0 but I have found that as I research the Internet on this variety from different suppliers I am getting conflicting lighting ratings. Can you please offer your advice? <Is it "mushrooms" or Ricordea you'd rather keep? Though they're both Corallimorphs, they have slightly different care requirements. Ricordea tend to be more difficult to keep, need low flow and probably a bit more light than other mushrooms. In either case, the best place to acquire them is from a fellow aquarist who has kept them successfully for awhile or from a LFS that is successfully propagating them. Any Corallimorphs which have been thriving and multiplying in a captive system will be the most "hardy" and adaptable.> Thanks, Chris <Best, Sara M.>

Ricordea collection  4/5/08 Have you heard of any new regulations about the collection of Ricordea in Florida? I couple of websites are stating that Florida has outlawed the collection of all Ricordea for the time being. Thank you, Trina <Mmm, in a bit of a hurry to look for/find the actual statute, but Ricordea (and other Cnidarians) have been illegal to collect in FLA for years. Bob Fenner>

Elephant Ear Mushroom... Not So Little Shroom of Horrors! - 08/02/07 <Greetings, Mich here.> 125G marine reef tank, running for a little over 1.5 years. Tank parameters are very good. <Vague.> About six months ago I purchased an elephant ear mushroom. <Uh-oh> The fish store said it would not get much bigger than it was which at the time was about 8 inches diameter. Low and behold it is now at least 20 inches in diameter and is starting to consume my fish. <Wow! That's a big one!> How big will this monster get? <Mmm, yours is bigger than the generally described max size! You might want to name it Audrey... feed me Seymour!> I have it at the end of the tank with nothing around it. I was sad beyond words to see it had gotten my mandarin which was over a year old. It has eaten my peppermint shrimp and a chromis that I've had for over a year and a half. <It will eat anything it can capture. This means any fish of invertebrate that comes into contact with it. It should be in a coral only tank.> Every 6 days I've been feeding it small portions of shrimp. <Will still capture anything it can.> Can I remove it from the rock without hurting it? <Likely so.> If I get it off and leave a piece behind, will it regenerate? <Likely so.> I may just need to get rid of the rock all together. <Perhaps or a chisel or hammer may do the trick!> Of course the fish store will take donations, but no credit for it. <Perhaps a fellow hobbyist? But only one that is aware of its capacity to engulf and consume anything that comes into contact with it.> It is a beautiful creature. <Yes.> I'm torn between loosing fish or finding a new home for the animal, <I would not allow this creature to be tankmates with any fish or mobile inverts.> plus I paid a goodly sum for it when I got it. <It's not about the money.> Shame on me for not investigating before I purchased it. <A sign of wisdom here. We all make mistakes... learning from them is key.> Any advice is greatly appreciated. <Needs to be in a tank with no mobile tankmates. Mich>

Dyed Ricordea? - 06/20/06 Dear Crew, <<Evening Narayan>> I've read about dyed soft corals, anemones and glass fish on WWM. <<Indeed>> But just out of curiosity, have you heard of anyone dying Ricordea? <<Can't say that I have>> The reason I ask is that my LFS has a bright florescent-green polyp that looks too bright and florescent to be real. <<Hmm...>> I searched the Internet for pictures and haven't found one that colorful. <<Perhaps a true "find"...or perhaps not...>> I'm very tempted, but I want to make sure... <<Is a possibility I suppose...I think you'll have to use your own good judgment here>> Thank you, Narayan <<Welcome, EricR>>

Re: Dyed Ricordea? - 06/21/06 Thanks! I'll let you know if it's offspring are not as vibrant! Narayan <<Please do!  EricR>> Looking for whlse supply of Zo's and Ricordea ... to ship to S. Africa  1/20/06 Good day all <Micae> I need assistance with the following if possible. After many years of keeping and breeding marine fish and propagating corals I have now decided to take the big step and start an online business. <Not for the easily challenged> I do not intend to sell everything I lay my hands on. I am looking for rare and exotic species and other livestock not readily available in South Africa. My question is if you could perhaps assist us with the name of a reliable supplier of Florida Ricordeas and zooanthids. <Mmm, you might try ORA/C-Quest... and later (they're re-building) ProAquatix> We do have regular flights to South Africa so this should not be a problem. FedEx also delivers. We have been in contact with Kiki Haman from Ricordeas.net but feel that $12 per polyp excluding shipping for 100 polyps is a retail price and not wholesale. We know that shipping to South Africa from the US is expensive, this is why 90% of dealers import from Indonesia, but at this stage shipping cost is a small price to pay in order for us to bring these wonderful that are not available here to our clients. creatures into the country. Your assistance would be appreciated Micae <Mmm, when you have a URL to post, please re-send this note... and I will refer it and post it on WWM. Bob Fenner> Looking for source of Ricordea floridae  1/7/06 Hello Bob,   First of all let me that you for the wonderful site, I've built up a lot of my saltwater knowledge through the myriad of pages here, and have learned more than I'd have though possible from just one site, so again, thanks for the wonderful resource!  Now, I'm nearly embarrassed to pose this question, see I am a relatively new coral supplier, 2 years or so, and have been searching to no avail for a reliable supplier of well priced Ricordea floridae mushrooms. <Mmm, am going to suggest the only avenue I'm comfortable doing so... "making your own"... What a certain, very old time friend of mine did/does... Cutting through the siphonoglyph (to urge splitting), doing inexpensive "things" light and chemistry-wise and having a bunch (unfortunately) of time going by...>   I've heard tell of many suppliers in Miami who have them for amazingly good prices, but as of yet have not been able to track down a single one, <I don't know of any...> as I said, it's nearly embarrassing, I've been able to find so many suppliers of great corals, and still none for Ricordea.  Every time I say to one of my suppliers that I need 500-1000 polyps they laugh!  If you could offer any insight, or forward my email to anyone who may be interested in contacting me, I'd be most appreciative, either way I thank you very much for your time, and hope that your new year is going well Sincerely, Miguel Tolosa Fraggle Reef <We'll/Will post your note in the hope that someone will come forward with useful information. Don't be embarrassed. Bob Fenner> Mushroom anemones and macroalgae Hi Bob, I have a 75-gallon FOWLR tank. I have been thinking about introducing some mushrooms and macroalgae into the tank. I have three NO fluorescent light tubes. Do I have enough light? And what recommendations would you make as far as the different varieties of mushrooms and macroalgae are concerned? I am of course interested in great colors and hardiness. Thank you. Boon >> I think your mushrooms and macro-algae will do fine with the lighting... not super luxuriant perhaps, but as well as the wild. And any Discosoma/Actinodiscus specimens will do fine... choose as you wish color/fuzziness/shape wise. I would look into imported species from the Caribbean as far as the algae are concerned... Do label your fluorescent lamps as to inception dates, and start cycling them out after about eight months... Bob Fenner

Mushroom Corals Bob, First off, I wanted to say thank you, thank you, thank you for the great advise concerning ich that you gave me a few months ago. I moved all my fish to a 38 gal tank for treatment. In the main tank I lowered the specific gravity and let it go fallow for two months. Worked like a charm! My fish have been happy and content know for about three months with no problems. <Ah, very good to hear of your success> I have a 90 tank with overflow, a wet/dry (Amiracle), protein skimmer (turbo floater), I use Chemi-pure carbon in the sump of the wet dry. I have about 120 lbs of Fiji, Marshall islands and Tonga live rock that is covered with coralline algae and some nice macro algae of various species. Actually, one of the macro algae species came in on a few pieces of the Fiji rock. They have grow about 12 inches+ long and have reached the surface and then some (very nice).  <Do keep these trimmed back a bit... best to keep under the surface...> My fish include: an emperor angel (4-5 inches), he's about 3/4 of the way through changing to adult coloration, a flame angel (3 inches), six line wrasse, domino damsel, 2 Chromis, 1 yellow tail damsel, maroon clown (3 inches), a yellow tang (3 inches) and a blenny (red-lip I think). My inverts include: 1 blood shrimp, 1 cleaner (skunk) shrimp, various snails, blue legs and 2 brittle stars. Everyone gets along good an all seem happy! <Ah, good> My lighting consists of a 110 watt power compact 10,000K, 1- 40 watt actinic fluorescent and 1- 40 watt 6500K fluorescent. All my test parameters check out good. My calcium is a little low do to the excellent growth of coralline algae, so I started supplementing sea-chem calcium additive. <Okay> My question is: Are there any of the hardier corals that I can try like mushrooms that the flame angel and emperor angel won't eat and that don't require a lot of light.  My live rock goes as high as 3 inches from the surface and my lights sit on top of the cover glass. If I put the corals close to the top they would be about 5-6 inches from the lights. What do you think? Thanks again, Tom

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