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FAQs about Sea Fan Identification 1

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Gorgonian ID and care 12/22/05 I recently purchased a similar gorgonian. I cant seem to find any info on it. <It is always better to research an animals needs before purchase!  It is impossible to ID the gorgonian in the picture you sent, and even more impossible to know if yours is the same.  Gorgonian care is highly variable, except that almost all require strong current.  Brightly colored specimens are generally non-photosynthetic and require large amounts of often highly specialized food.  Most of these are doomed to waste away and die.  Generally gray and brown specimens (and some purple ones) are photosynthetic and so require bright light.  These specimens still appreciate food, but are less dependent on it.  If you are confident that your specimen is NOT photosynthetic, I would try to return it to the dealer.  If they will not accept it back, you can attempt to provide it with adequate food (baby brine shrimp, Cyclops-eeze, oyster eggs are all reasonable to try).  If you think it is photosynthetic, then bright light and strong current should do the trick.  All gorgonians will also benefit from the presence of plankton generating refugia.  Best Regards.  AdamC.>

Blueberry gorgonian  9/9/05 Hi!   Thank you and your site for your help thus far.  I just have a quick question for you.  I bought this (attached picture)  as a blueberry gorgonian.  I however cannot find any information about it under this name.  I was curious if you could give me a better name for it so that I might research it a little.  Thank you for your time! Sara <A beautiful organism... some input: http://www.aquariumpros.ca/forums/showthread.php?p=61093&mode=linear&highlight=blueberry and http://aquariacanada.com/forums/printthread.php?s=92eaada82261dd608f4738eef971c4ae&threadid=6326 and more specifically for the genus Guaiagorgia http://www.google.com/search?sourceid=navclient&gfns=1&ie=UTF-8&q=Guaiagorgia To sum up... not a photosynthetic species, most folks have "had luck" with Cyclop-eeze, brisk circulation... Read on my friend. Bob Fenner>

Identification gorgonian 1/10/04 Hello to you WWM Crew :) At first I want to say sorry for my English; it's not my native language :). <Hello Petra!  No apologies necessary, your English is outstanding!> Pease can you help me to identify my gorgonian? I've looked all around the internet but I can't seem to find what species it is.  It has a bumpy white base, grows treelike and has small light orange polyps which come out at night. <Hmm...  Looks like Swiftia sp., but Swiftia is generally all bright red/orange.  Perhaps this is an odd morph or bleached.> (I hope they will come out in the light at sometime :)) <They may.  "teasing" it with food additions during the day may help in this regard.> I am feeding it with phytoplankton 3 times a week. At some of the tips the black skeleton is visible :(. Should I remove these parts or will the living tissue come back? <Since you are feeding phytoplankton, I guess you know that this gorgonian is not photosynthetic.  The problem is, phytoplankton may be an appropriate food, but it may not be.  These animals are very specific in the size and type of prey they will accept, and meeting those requirements is very hard to do.  You may want to try some other food sources (rotifers, baby brine shrimp, etc.), but unfortunately I suspect that it will continue to recede until it dies.  You can remove the exposed skeleton with a sharp scissors, and it may get re-covered by tissue, but probably not.> Well I hope I haven't asked to much questions at once, but your website has been very helpful so far. <Please ask all the questions you want, that is why we are here!  Best regards!  Adam> Hoping to hear from you soon, greetings, Petra

Gorgonian ID Key, Stocking Query Dear crew! We are dealing with the animal husbandry and we've a lot of problems. Recently we purchased two unidentified gorgon Arians . The first one forms a bushy red colony with white polyps & thorn-like cups,25 cm tall. The second one is a tree-like brown colony with blue polyps 15 cm. tall. We assume that they are Muriceopsis flavida & Eunicea succinea, but we are far from to be sure. Could you send an identification key? <Mmm, no. Don't have. There are some in-print reference works (e.g. Alderslade et al.), but no such on-line source as far as I'm aware> Both they were in the quarantine about 2 month. Now they are melting, Their polyps are closed, & in the second species the tips of branches are shrinking. May this be a melting consequence? <Yes... I proscribe the keeping of just a few species for the trade, for sale... these are described, listed on WetWebMedia.com> Could you also inform us about the hydrochemistry, in particular, Ca, Sr, Mg and the with the other Cnidaria. <Posted on WWM> P. s. What do your think about the following livestock: 1 Euphyllia glabrescens (diameter (d)=10 cm), 1 Sinularia sp. (25 cm tall), 3 specimens of Alcyonium sp.(50 cm tall), 1 Galaxea sp. (d=5 cm.), 1 sphaeric colony of Goniopora (d=15 cm), <Am not a fan of the aquarium use of this genus> 1 colony of Cladiella sp. (25 cm. tall), 4 specimens of Sarcophyton sp.(2x20, 15 & 10 cm), 2 specimens of Lobophyton sp. (25 & 20 cm tall)& 2 colonies of the gorgon Arians mentioned in 250 gal aquarium (assuming that all the other factors are normal one)? <Could, can be done, given space between all. Bob Fenner> Best Interzoo.

Coral ID. Hi all, just have a quick ID question. The LFS sold this rock to me as "live rock" (sorry about the picture quality). <Not too bad, good enough.> I know it's not that, but I'm having a hard time pinning it down. It has pink, leathery skin and tan polyps that are about 3/8 inch high with 8 "fingers". The polyps retract at night and the skin becomes shiny. It is spreading to the other rock that it comes into contact with. <Yes, very prolific.> It's probably common but I haven't had any luck on the ID. Thanks for any help you can provide. ~Danny B. in Blanco, Texas <Well Danny, what you have there is likely Erythropodium, possibly Briareum, but my bet is on the former. It is a very fast spreader and rather noxious. -Steven Pro>

Help with coral ID Hola Robert :) <Hola, Edgar... Anthony Calfo in your service.. a fellow reefer, and reef author> Edgar From Mexico again :) hope the troubles with the page can be solved soon, I was really scared of thinking the page was gone. Now to business. I wonder if you could help me to identify a soft coral I have. Is an octocoral and I think is Clavularia sp, but some of my friends say might be anthelia or even Xenia (which, if its true, will make me happy :) ) the polyps are small (1 inch height), the arms (pinnules? are "branched". its color is light brown. and they close at night and retract the arms, leaving only a "bump". I have to pictures which I could send you if you like. thanks edg <please do send a pic, I suspect that it can be ID'ed quickly with a reasonably good photo. With kind regards, Anthony>
Re: Help with coral ID Anthony, Here are two pictures of how much the polyps have grown in 6 mo. picture 001 the lower mass is the newest, the piece up (center) is the original. it grows onto the rear tank glass (picture 002) some where around 10"+ in diameter. This is where I cut from and glued it onto other rocks. Can you tell what kind it is? As soon as I get a good tank picture I'll send it. Anthony, <Absolutely... nice picture too, thank you. It is Erythropodium...AKA "encrusting Gorgonian". a hardy and fast growing animal that is similar to Briareum from the Pacific but is distinguished by its smooth mat of fused stolons and usual brown/gray color (Briareum stolons are purple, calyces are raised). A little caution here as Erythropodium actively seeks some other corals to encrust upon and kill. But indeed fast growing and fun> <Looking forward to it! Kindly, Anthony>
Gorgonian Identification Hi, <Hi Kevin, MacL here with you today.> You seem to know a lot about gorgonians, so I was wondering what type this is, it came on a purple gorgonian that I bought. <Without the polyps being extended its very hard to tell Kevin. Can you get an additional picture with them out?> How much do you thing this little frag would go for? <That's a tough question because price fluctuates depending on the area.> thank you,

Gorgonians me again - just bought a gorgeous blue green Gorgonian octocorallian from work yesterday, I put it in the direct path of a powerhead, so it has plenty of circulation and movement, but there seems to be a lighting dispute - one of my co workers recommended low light conditions (which I thought to be ridiculous, because I know they contain Zooxanthellae) but I read your article and I agree with you. What exactly are their light conditions? thanks Again, Chris >> Hmmm, really depends on the question of whether the species in question is photosynthetic or not (yep, some have endosymbiotic algae, other's don't). I suspect that you have one of the two more popular Pseudopterygorgia (from the tropical west Atlantic), that photosynthates... requiring moderate to bright lighting, brisk circulation... which most all forms/species will tolerate...but do confirm the species Bob Fenner

Gorgonian Care, 9/19/03 In my local pet store they had what was labeled as a Gorgonian Ribbon.  What is this and what is the care involved? Caryn <lets see if we can find its genus first... I wonder/suspect you may be looking at a Pterogorgia species (a sea whip...sometimes called "ribbons"). Use that genus to do a search of the web for pictures to see if it looks like a similar creature. If so, they are fairly hardy if given very strong water movement and medium to bright light. Fluorescent lamps will be tolerable if the aquarium is shallow (24" or less) with the gorgonian in the top half of the tank. Best regards, Anthony>

Coral ID and mature reef display...Kudos! Greetings!  Could you tell me what the large coral on the left of this picture is?   <it is an Atlantic Gorgonian Octocoral.. perhaps Muricea or Eunicea. One of the hardiest species. A delight to see> This is my 10-year old 45 gal tank.  The Scopas tang at the bottom will be 11 next month (that's how long I've had him, anyway.)   <outstanding my friend! Kudos to you. Very inspiring for the rest of us> Thanks, <best regards, Anthony>

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