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Thread: Lets Talk About It. ~ Coral Feeding~

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    Lets Talk About It. ~ Coral Feeding~

    SO lets talk about coral feeding. Thier are many corals out thier and all of them have much differing feeding requirements, Lets dig into this a little bit deeper and see if we can shine some light on the subject.


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    I have just started trying this in the last two months, and there are so many products and articles about it. I have very few corals at the moment (I am in the process of changing the tank and maybe upgrading), about 15 softies, 5 sps, and a squamosa.

    I still don't know enough about whether I am using the right products, feeding too much, etc. I am anxious to see how this thread progresses.
    Last edited by j.stagner; 01-23-2004 at 09:07 PM.
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    I am curious as to whether anyone has tried the BioPlankton product. Here is a link : http://www.marinedepot.com/a_ad_ll.asp

    One of the the LFS in Bellevue just started carrying this, and nobody I've talked to has any experience with it. I doubt this is something I need at this point, but I am always curious about new products. The claims made are interesting, such as the density and sizes of the phyto contained.
    In the beginners mind there are many possibilities. In the expert's there are few.

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    Well, I'll put it this way the LFS you are talking about in Bellevue is way cheaper then Marine Depot for the BioPlankton. If you haven't gone to that LFS in Bellevue they have actually gone down in pricing; however, the nice thing about them is if you really get to now them they give you a better deal then the psas card. I guess being nice doesn't hurt.

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    In most cases I dont think supplemental feeding of corals is necessary. As long as the placement of the coral is such that it meets the specific needs of each coral and our tanks can generate the supply for those needs.

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    Feeding corals is something folks should really be up on. As all the food you put in your tank goes towards the degradation of the water quality. I think the first thing we should really cover is that ALL corals are different and have different requirements when it comes to food sources. Ok lets dig a little deeper. Another big factor in coral feeding is thier location and this should play a role in the feeding program you set up. Here is an example. Soft corals are mainly found in the deeper sections of reefs and in lagoons. The deeper waters and the turbid (lots of crude in the water) conditions of lagoons are not very conducive to the absorbtion of light by the corals light gathering algae, this has forced this coral to rely more on the capture of food, this also shows buy the ammount of flesh on the coral itself and its structure. On the opposite end of this is the acropora. It is primarly found in crystal clear water, nutrient poor and is exposed to a ton of light. It has developed an very efficient method of Photosynthsis that produced up to 98% of all its food requirements. So very little is needed in the concept of supplimental feeding.

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    I think feeding is very important, but I think overfeeding is a detriment to the overall environment. Excess nutrients is not good. I have never used things such as golden pearls to feed corals as I hear overdosing those can really be a nightmare. I have relied heavily on the excess food that I feed the fish to make it's way in some form to the coral. Also, in my old setup I had many pairs of critters in the tank that spawned a lot. Clownfish, clown gobies, harlequin shrimp, etc ... those also contributed greatly to coral feeding on a relatively regular basis

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    nice post Mojo, my eyes didnt go crossed for a change

    well, as for feeding the corals, i really dont, except the occational feeding of frozen brine (which does more for the corals then fish), also mt shrimp do some feeding, lol, but they dont see it that way

    the only thing that i do to keep the corals (hard corals that is) healthy is keep the calcium up, i think this should be concederd part of the feeding as well, w/o the calcium the corals would not be able to live, and w/o getting into how to keep the calc in the ranges they need to be (another topic ), i keep the calcium in the 450 range, and so far it has been stable

    on another note, clams, most clams only need to be fed until they are around 3-3.5 inches, i fed mine phyto untill then, i took it out of the tank (so the tank wouldnt be harmed in the feeding) and placed it in a container of tank water, then proceded to feed it, i feed enough for the water to start to turn greenish, then i left it in there till it was clear and placed it back in the tank, worked for me, i never measured the amount of phyto, just put enough in there i guess

    TD
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    Feeding! Yeah great topic!

    I feed primarily home made "mush" which consists of raw shrimp, clams, scallops, raw fish, nori, selcon, etc which is ground up in a blender and frozen in freezer bags with RO water.

    Very important to wash all the ingredients very well as they are loaded with phosphates and this stuff is very potent. I feed the tank about twice a week and works great for the fish, corals, inverts, etc.
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    good posts folks

    Mike
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    Hey, some familiar faces....here's my first post, so I'll jump in with both feet.

    Cyclop-eeze....what is this made of? I've read that people have success feeding it to more difficult corals, and everything in the tank goes wild for it.

    As far as blender mush goes, Johnny mentioned RO water. I'm not sure he meant soaking the pieces in RO before blending or adding it to the mix. IMO, you should soak the pieces in RO/DI to get rid of the "nasties" strain off the water, and proceed to blend. Question: Is there anything that is not the best to be in blender mush that a lot of people use (i.e. squid isn't ideal, scallops, or clams, etc.)? One type of fish over another? I've read that some shrimp at the store has some type of additive to make it appear "poofy", and, therefore,should be avoided as use in blender mush.

    Thanks in advance - great thread, Mike

    edit to fix a spelling error
    Last edited by NaH2O; 01-26-2004 at 07:28 AM.
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    Hiya Nikki and welcome to Reef Frontiers. Feeding is very important to our reeefs, mainly because its something we add to our tank every single day so whats in it plays a very large role in the water quality of our tanks. In regards to the shrimp and poofy, all seafood products we find at the local grocery store are sprayed with a saltspray either right on the boat or at the docks, the spray is used to lock in the moisture and enhance the color of the food, harmless to humans, but the spray is loaded with Phosphates. So if you feed this food to your tank, soaking it in striped ro water will pull the majority of these Phosphates out, then just throw away the water and feed the balance. So it not just shrimp but all seafood.
    Now in saying that i still believe seafood is the best thing you can feed your tank. On what is good and what is not, I try to stay away from most bottom dweeler as in clams, oysters also squid of coarse has a nasty ink problem, hehe.
    I will give you something to think about when it comes to feed for the reef. Now days a lot of the big push coming from the experts? is to try to cultivate natural food for your tanks. Critters like larvae, rotifers, pods and so on. For me I find those things so inferior to feeding a simple belnded seafood. Heres an example, lets compare say a pod to a simple chunk of shrimp meat. they are both the exact same size and weight. Pod first: the pod is made up of a shell, legs, antenii, and protien meat, now if we strip away all the stuff that is not eatable we are just left with the protien meat inside, maybe 40 to 50% of the total critters mass. Now take the shrimp meat, Hmmm 100% meat and 100 % protien. So in lining them up a simple chunk of shrimp meat gives twice the protien need to whatever feeds on it. Now go a little deeper, if you create an enviroment for the grow and production of these natural food sources (pods/rotifers, larvae and so on) ie the sand bed or the refugium or what ever, you have no control over in population fluxes. They will populate and die off at thier call, not yours. When the die the hurt the water quality for all in the tank. With the seafood mix, you control the input and you control how quickly it goes in, then you also control it removal. I believe it to be a far more efficient and healthy way to feed your corals and all othes in your reef.

    On the Cyclop-eeze I beleive its a mixture of deadzooplankton and a variety of other simular products blended into a paste. putting it into your tank naturally stimulates the polyps of most corals and gives the appearence of the coral going wild. I beleive corals that actually do intake prey will feed on it, the only downer I see is that as with all foods like this preservatives must be used in the making of these kinds of foods, or they wouldnt last a week.

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    Dead zooplankton - sounds like it would lead to excess phosphates among other nutrients.

    How often would an LPS need to be fed? Say for example, Trachyphyllia. Once a week, a few times a week, once a month, never??

    On the topic of phytoplankton....how long does this stay viable for? How long can you really keep it in order to ensure it is alive? I'm sure once it is added to the tank, those that utilize it will and the rest just dies - therefore, adding more excess nutrients. Is phyto really that beneficial?

    One last question: Is there a certain type of fish used in blender mush that would have better nutrients, like salmon for example?

    Sheesh, I'm long winded today - sorry
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    Dead zooplankton - sounds like it would lead to excess phosphates among other nutrients
    yep thats about it. if you had goo flow however hopefully it would allow your skimmer to remove any unused particles.
    How often would an LPS need to be fed? Say for example, Trachyphyllia. Once a week, a few times a week, once a month, never??
    thats a tough question. they do need suplimental feeding (feeding beyond what they get from thier zoox) but they are also very capable of bacterial capture, through mucus netting, also nematocyst spearing. Nikki I believe you have to put together a concept when concidering feeding corals. The higher species in the tank like fish will eat food and will poop out about 90% of it (the 10% rule) this 90% is what usually goes to feed lesser critters in the reef, corals being one of them. The concept is to create flow patterns and ammounts to keep the detritus suspended in the water column. when it is suspended it will have the food available to them and in the right particle size. So then if they need it they will uptake it if not not. If the food lands on the sandbed, it will feed the sand bed critters, if it forms a pile in the corner well them your going to have some happy bacteria and detrovoirs. If you have either of those 2 situations then you should try to makes sure some goes thier way, but remember particle size in critical, so make sure the food is of the right size to fit in the polyp.
    On the topic of phytoplankton....how long does this stay viable for? How long can you really keep it in order to ensure it is alive? I'm sure once it is added to the tank, those that utilize it will and the rest just dies - therefore, adding more excess nutrients. Is phyto really that beneficial?
    I am not sure how long it stays in the fridge, but the bottle should say on it. If your talking about phyto that you have cultured and then put in the tank, that has to many variables to know, some are eaten by those that need it and the balance would either go down to the bottom of the tank or if you had good flow it would go to the skimmer. With phyto it is really important to make sure you are only feeding it if you have something that needs it. Thier are very few things that do require it, so only feed if you have these critters. Phyto is almost pure phosphate so it comes with a price when you use it.
    One last question: Is there a certain type of fish used in blender mush that would have better nutrients, like salmon for example?
    Critter require ammounts of P and N that are associated with protiens and the general matrix of fish,shrimps and so on. try to stay away from oily fish, although I like to use salmon as it has color enhanceing protiens.

    hope it helps

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    Originally posted by NaH2O
    One last question: Is there a certain type of fish used in blender mush that would have better nutrients, like salmon for example?
    Hi everyone, very nice board you have here.

    I also try and stay away from oily fish as I have found that it can really leave a slick on the water surface of my sump. Having said that, I no longer add any fish to my mush because the species of fish I have will not eat it. My mush is made up of shrimp, scallops, and squid. FWIW, the squid must be pre-cut to small sizes before introducing them to the blender, as the larger pieces will wrap around the blender shaft and stop it from rotating.
    Steve

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