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SPS Frags on their side

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spieszak

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Anyone doing this when fragging? I've read some pros and cons, and am thinking about trying a side by side comparison with a birds nest I'll be fragging in the next couple of weeks to "see for myself".... so I'm wondering if anyone has tried it and if they have an tips or advice on anything 'special' to look for when doing so.
 

IPisces

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great idea. you will have to post progress pics. I am guessing you mean instead of glueing the frags of sps down on the cut end, glueing it on its side. I have seen someone do that. there is no reason it should be a problem. The coral will continue to grow no matter what direction its mounted.
 

trido

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I do it sometimes. Mostly it depends on how I cut the frag and what kind of coral it is. IME birdsnest and catspaw corals do little to no encrusting before they grow upwards so I would never glue one on it's side. When I'm fragging Acropora's and Millepora's I glue tips upward, since they will encrust and grow upward in a natural looking way. If I cut a larger branch of tort into several one inch peices I glue them onto their sides so they can heal both ends and encrust. Then they start to grow upwards from several places and make a natural colony. Mostly it depends on the shape I'm glueing.
 

spieszak

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I haven't fragged SPS before, so its totally new to me. The lack of encrusting as far as birds nest is concerned and growing up.. Are you generally just worried about the final shape of the colony, or is it more than you don't feel that they will heal correctly when glued sideways due to the lack of encrusting?
 

IPisces

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Well why dont we get a couple people cutting and mounting different branching sps both ways and see how the grow out is over a period of time. Someone do birdsnests, someone do acros, someone do torts or stags and so on.

I have always mounted sps, no matter what it was vertically by the cut end. Id be willing to participate.
 

spieszak

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Unless Duane comes back with noting that he thinks its terribly bad for the birds nest (as in I don't think it will heal correctly) I'm in for the birds nest I intend to frag. I have to get a good pair of bone cutters before I do though, and there are some busy weekends coming up... so it might be the first of the year before I start. I will post photos here (gives me a great excuse to get my camera out too, which I wish I did more often) I just picked up a new waterproof (to 20 ft) one that takes some great macro shots (my avatar is one) so that should help for seeing details.
 

IPisces

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I think all sps will heal over where it was cut. not whether it branches before it encrusts or encrusts before it branches and if it starts branching from the cut end might be the a question.
 

spieszak

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I think all sps will heal over where it was cut. not whether it branches before it encrusts or encrusts before it branches and if it starts branching from the cut end might be the a question.
I also wonder a bit about the exposure. When its cut and the cut is glued, its kind of like when you paint the branch of a cut tree limb. I worry a bit about leaving that end totally exposed.
 

trido

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If your tank and coral are healthy the cut end will heal no matter how you leave it (unless its covered in glue). You can glue any SPS coral on its side after fragging. I typically don't with birdsnests because they don't encrust much if at all. If I had a small branch that looked funny and I wanted to save it and glued it on it's side ( I usually let small pieces die and recycle them for reactor media) I would expect it to grow upward from several places right away and not encrust. IME its just not one of the SPS corals that spends much energy encrusting. I assume in the wild it just breaks apart and self propogates from the shattered pieces on the reef where the corals like torts that encrust depend more on spawning than cloning to self propogate.
 

spieszak

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i agree. i think i see both horizontal and vertical growth. which came first (if you remember)?
i assume thats an acro.. does it have a name? (i probably won't recognize it anyway, just curious)
 

kevinpo

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Hello,
For small polyp stony species it makes little difference regarding mounting orientation over time. Some of the heavier branched corals develop a more secure base when glued sideways. The ends will quickly (in a week or so) grow tissue over them and produce either a single corallite or multiple ones. Seriatopora species do not encrust much and are fast growers almost always forming a round ball shaped colony regardless of mounting orientation.

Cheers,
Kevin
 

kevinpo

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Does this advice apply to fragging a green tree leather (soft and squishy sps)?
Hello,
There are no soft and squishy SPS corals :) SPS stands for small polyp stony corals. Corals without a hard stony skeleton are generally referred to as soft corals in this hobby.

Leather and or tree corals look best when mounted perpendicular like a terrestrial tree. One of the best ways to do this is after cutting the frag push a toothpick through the stalk and then either glue the ends of the toothpick to a rock or wedge one or both ends of the toothpick under a rock, either way so that part of the coral contacts the rock.

Regards,
Kevin
 
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