Acropora feeding images. What I have learned/observed 6/16/2011

Discussion in 'SPS Corals' started by Corailline, Dec 19, 2010.

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  1. Corailline

    Corailline Super Moderator Staff Member

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    It is a dry heat, yeah right !
    After attempting to get the best feeding response from my acroporas I have developed a method that seems to work well but needs some fine tuning.

    Initially I add a small amount of Rod's Foods to the tank with all pumps running. I try to add the smallest particulates to the tank, a type of slurry, so to speak.

    Wait 30 minutes until I first start to see the mesenterial filaments emerge. Once I see them I add more slurry to the area surrounding the coral. I then wait about 20 more minutes and repeat. It takes much more time for acropora to show a feeding response so you have to be patient.

    [​IMG]

    Almost all the acropora in my tank show the response to some degree, except for one tort. The response from the other torts usually happens at night within 24 hours of feeding during the day.

    Is this a feeding response rather than a defensive one ? I do believe so, because the coloration and growth have improved and I see no adverse effects. I think a lot of people miss it because they do not wait or feed too quickly. If this were a sign of irritation I would expect to see the polyps retract rather then get larger.

    On occassion the corals will start this response without introduction of food to the tank. It seems that once one starts it, that coral emits some type of chemical response and the others follow.

    I will admit I have no scientific evidence for any of this, only my personal observations. And I see the greatest response in the smaller frags and much more quickly.


    This is a frag of a Tri-color valida acropora 20 minutes of introduction of food.

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    One hour later.

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    Two hours later.

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    The Red planet, Green millepora, Christmas millepora, and the Brown stagehorn all 40 minutes after introduction of food.
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    Last edited: Jun 16, 2011
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  3. Nismo400rgtr

    Nismo400rgtr Teardrop Maxima Clam

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    Very interesting observations!! If coloration and growth have improved as you say,I'd imagine it's feeding response and not defensive. So you do this with pumps on? Just curious as to what time in your light cycle are you feeding this way? Is it close to lights out? AM?
     
  4. Corailline

    Corailline Super Moderator Staff Member

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    It is a dry heat, yeah right !

    I think the mesenterial filments are used for defense as well as for feeding. There is some documentation to support this, if you look around for it. They may also be used to aid in oxygenation. Some report that the filments contain nemocyst, which actually capture zooplankton.

    Yes pumps on. Tried with them off but the acroporas seem to do better with them on during feeding. Now the lps, zoanthids and mushrooms like the pumps off.

    I usually feed about 2 hours after the lights come on, in the am.
     
  5. 2in10

    2in10 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Great stuff, congrats on the feeding method.
     
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  6. Nismo400rgtr

    Nismo400rgtr Teardrop Maxima Clam

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    Thanks Corailline!! Didn't even know about mesenterial filaments until you mentioned them. Still learning SPS!

    BTW my acro treatment is on it's way!
     
  7. steve wright

    steve wright Super Moderator Staff Member

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    quality images Corailline

    easy to see exactly what you have described

    Steve
     
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  9. Nismo400rgtr

    Nismo400rgtr Teardrop Maxima Clam

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    I tried to feed my acros in the same manner tonight. Saw nearly half the extension you've posted!! Lol... but it seems like a more natural feeding regimen for them. I mean, they wouldn't loose flow in the ocean now would they ;) ! I don't have time to do it in the morning. My actinics come on approximately 2 hours after I leave the house, then the mains 1 1/2 hour after that, so evening is when I'll be feeding.
     
  10. Corailline

    Corailline Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Thanks John, it is a work in progress.

    Thank you Steve! I had hoped the images would work to show a time progression. Punny little frags but easier to see then the larger colonies.

    As time goes on the acropora seem to react quicker, almost like they had to be trained to eat suspended particles again. I think the smaller frags react the most because they need more nutrition, just a guess.

    :)
     
  11. Nismo400rgtr

    Nismo400rgtr Teardrop Maxima Clam

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    I'd agreed with that hypothesis.
     
  12. alpha_03

    alpha_03 Bubble Tip Anemone

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    Corailline, I have a mille that has grown out on a pink xmas tree- a couple questions for ya.

    The worm itself (two heads) used to come out quite often, but now rarely comes out.

    Mind you the entire top length is covered in pink millepora about 1.5 x 2 inches worth. This particular one is in my 29 gallon coral tank. I really like it's look, but I fear for the worm.

    Is there something I can do to make them both happy, as it appears the worm isnt so happy with it's millepora "renters" encroching upon his tube.

    Oh and BTW mine like the ZooPlanktos-L (Brightwell) that I feed them.