Sunday, March 16, 2008

Acros under halides!

Hello everyone. The story behind the "aqua media" aquarium is going to take some time to put together. At first I was just going to post a picture and a quick story. But now I'd like to do a detailed summary of the aquarium and its builder. I will do a thread later in the week. Meanwhile I had a rare opportunity to check out some acros under a metal halide.

It turned out that our partner company in Jakarta has a display tank in the office. The aquarium is around 5 feet long and has a metal halide hood. It looks to be a dual 250 watt 14k or 20k set up. I didn't notice any supplemental actinics. One of the bulbs was burnt out and I can only imagine how old the bulbs were. Nevertheless, it gave me an opportunity to view the corals under artificial lighting.

Unfortunately, we couldn't get freight space on the plane and had to delay the shipment. Because the acros and montis tend to brown out very fast, we ended up selling them to the Jakarta exporter. After sitting around for days in Jakarta, most of the sps were already brown or had lost much of its color. For this shipment, the acros and montis were collected in Bali and then send to Jakarta for export. In the future, we plan on setting up a halide sps system, just to hold the corals.

So this picture of a tenuis was taken on the day that I pulled it from Turtle Island. It was taken in our farm under natural lighting.

It had turned into this by the time I took the picture. I did use the flash on this one, but trust me, it browned out quite a bit.

Then I stuck it in the light, and behold, it still has nice colors! Just imagine what it would have looked like when I first pulled it from the ocean!

Here is another one that looked totally brown. Actually this deepwater tabling acro was kind of brown to begin with, before browning out more. As we say here in Indonesia, "chocolate!" (means brown in Indonesian).

But behold, it still had color! I'm sure in no time, it would color up.

This tenuis had lost half of its color from the original, but under the halide, it still looked good! Again I would've loved to seen it, when it was fresh out of the ocean.

This acro is called the "ultimate stag" in the US. It was sky blue with green polyps. It turned totally brown but you can still make out the greenish polyps. Again in no time, it would color back up.

The gomezi also lost much of its color. Looking like a tort everyday!

This millepora colony was a new stock. It was collected from deepwater. Milleporas are shallow water acros that can have awesome colors. Deepwater specimens like this one tend to be darker in color. This one happened to be pink, but really dark. It actually looked brown in the regular light. But again under halides, you can see the color right away. This will probably turn hot pink if kept under this lighting.

It was sad to see this piece colorless (compared to the original color). But when placed under the halide, the tenuis and millepora came to life!

Here is an acropora abrotanoides. This is the original color from Turtle Island.

And here it is still looking good after loosing half of its color! See, I told you it was red!

Another gomezi that has lost its color. But I'm sure in one week, this piece would start to color back up and morph into something!

This piece blew my mind! It was one of the new pieces. Definitely a deepwater brown acro. I would not even think about sending this piece, or that is what I thought!

Then shezzam!! this magical piece appeared in the water. I couldn't believe it! It had this very cool greenish sheen that was glowing at me. And with peach color tips! I really needed to see how this coral would turn out. So I moved some of the corals in the display tank and made room for it! I'm curious as how it would look now. But considering most likely the water quality being poor, I don't have much hopes. Yet, I will keep my fingers crossed and update you when I return to Jakarta this week.

Remember this piece of granulosa from Northern Bali? It was totally beautiful. You can see the greenish body with purple tips.

Sorry to say that even under the halide, this coral was still, for the most part brown. So you can imagine how much color it had lost. Very sad!

Most exporters here don't have the knowledge or the equipment to hold sps's for long term. For us, we do have plans in the future to build an sps system, just got to make some money first!

The time is now almost midnight. Outside waiting is a rental car. For in 4 hours, I will be heading out to Banyuwangi to hunt for corals! I will be staying there overnight this time around. So I will post when I return in two days. And you can be sure that I will have lots of stories and photos to share!!


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