Monday, January 26, 2009

More Cool Corals Continued!

Hello everyone. First I would like to say "Happy New Year" to my readers who celebrate Chinese New Year! There is a saying that if you work on New Year's day, that you will be working hard everyday for the rest of the year. This will explain why the the Chinatowns here close (open all year but the big new year day). Good thing I don't consider updating my blog work:)!

I know in Vietnam, Chinese New Year is celebrated much like our Christmas - people exchange gifts and families get together. My wife Anne has been trying all day to call her parents in Vietnam, but the phone lines have been jammed. Here in the US, it is just treated as another day for the most part. With the heavy population of Chinese in Indonesia, I'm sure there are celebrations going on over there.

And now, more corals for you to desire!

So this deepwater acropora is a Northern Bali special! This is the famous Acropora suharsonoi. Grows very slow and normally comes in brown-green. Sometimes get lucky and find one that is green-blue. Oh by the way, did you know that this coral was discovered by a local diver that is affiliated with the Forestry - Mr. Suharsono! For those of you that don't know, the government department that overseas the export of fish and corals is the Forestry department. In Tonga, it was the Fisheries. There are rumors though, that the Fisheries in Indonesia will take over from the Forestry at the beginning of the year 2010. Of course there will be some policy changes when this happens, hopefully for the positive.

Here is a blurred picture of the same coral without flash. Note the bluish color - way cool!

Here is another deepwater Bali special - Acropora tenella!

So this cool deepwater acro is an Acropora selago. This particular specimen was found in way deep water. The growth pattern is really strange on this coral, almost like a sea fan. Most acros that are found way deep down have this thinner branch fan like growth pattern.

Cute little Acropora cophodactyla anyone?!

Red cocoworms are seasonal in Indonesia. They are only available during the rainy months, November through February. They only come from a region in East Java and for some reason, it is only accessible during the rainy season. It turns out that during the other better weather months, the currents are too strong where these are found - how weird is that?

The color morphs range from white to white/red to all red, the latter being the most expensive.

One thing unique about these cocoworms is how they are packed for transport. A piece of plastic is used to cover the opening during packing. So basically, the packer makes sure there is water in the tube and covers with a piece of plastic and rubberbands the opening shut. This is to avoid the heads from falling off during shipping.

Here is a close up shot of the cocoworm ready to be shipped.

Beautiful x-large green-blue symphyllia!

Another beautiful symphyllia for your reef!

Strange growth form on this turbinaria makes it look like a montipora!

Gorgeous Acropora desalwii! This coral always has green polyps. The very close looking Acropora plana has purple polyps. Both corals occur in the same area and look much alike!

Sorry for the blurred picture. These are from my supplier, ready for me to pick through. Part of the thing is that I must pay extra for each piece that I select. Sometimes I have to buy the whole batch, but only export 20%.
But my suppliers are my lifeline, without them, nothing! They also in turn appreciate me teaching them what sells and what doesn't. My customers understand what I do for a living in Indonesia and supports my high end corals, even if they have to pay higher prices than most of what my competitors sell for. What makes me laugh is when people ask to get the cherry hand picks from me but wants left over pricing - not gonna happen! You get what you pay for!

And here are some of my picks from this batch.

Beautiful Acropora Efflorescense is also another Bali favorite. This coral used to be common about 6 years ago, but have literally disappeared, along with the solitaryensis.

A pair of slipper lobsters. These taste really great and you can find them at the Chinese restaurants. Some of them end up on the hobby end too.

One of my favorite fish of all time - the emperor angel! This boy was huge!

Here it is again. The shark is over 30 inches long. The angel must have been at least 18 inches long - gorgeous!

An elusive anemone - a purple tipped/based Heteractis magnifica!

The crew packing my corals for transport.


Ok guys that is it for today. I hope you enjoyed the pictures and info. Happy Chines New Year!


Thursday, January 22, 2009

More Cool Corals!

Hello everyone. For continuation of my Coral Adventures hunting down cool aquacultures in Northern Bali, go check out my second part of the adventure on www.

And now, let's continue on to some awesome corals!

These blue palys actually have yellowish skirts - way cool!

An unusual large Blastomussa wellsi colony. Extra big metallic red heads!

Acanthastrea rotundofloras are not common. This cool little coral will develop a green rim under artificial lighting!

Strange metallic pink and blue - green chalice!

A monster colony of a Favites pentagona - the "war coral"!

Another cool purple tipped Entacmae quadricolor!

Strange but cool mint looking Bali brain!

Crazy multicolor Bali brains are hard to come by!

A very nice collection of Bali brains!

Metallic peach palys anyone?!

I have the best aquacultures in the world! This dark pink/light purple millepora is just one of many color morphs of this species available.

Killer blue and purple milleporas are not a problem!

A collection of hand picked Acropora milleporas ready for export. The lucky Italy customer was indeed impressed!

Another nice red paly morph!

A little stressed but hanging in pretty good. This Acropora echinata has much potential under halides!

My favorite - the Acropora gomezi!

Some very cool small wild acros!

A collection of aquacultured Acropora carduus - stunning under halides!


Ok guys that is it for today. I will be updating with more awesome corals in just a couple of days!


Sunday, January 18, 2009

Cool Corals Continued!

Hello everyone. Before continuing on to more "cherry corals", I would like to introduce the "TRT Comparison Shopping Tool". The Reef Tank CST will officially launch tomorrow Monday the 19th on the online Reef forum Basically what it is, is that if you are looking for the best price on an aquarium item (including livestock), simply type in the item and the search engine will automatically find the best deals on the web - how cool is that!
Please go check it out!

And now the corals:)

So this pink and green echinophyllia chalice is one of the more common color morphs available. Looks spectacular under halides! Oh and these come in huge colonies. I've seen specimens over fifteen inches across!

Red carpets are pretty rare, even in Indonesia. I passed on this gorgeous piece as it wouldn't have made the transit - just too big. Just sitting there, it appeared to be around thirty inches across! I always urge the suppliers and fishermen to leave these monstrous living things in the wild.

Stunning orange rose anemone with purple tips from Flores - incredible!

Blue palys are always high in demand. This cute little piece actually has orange highlites in its skirt!

Metallic frogspawns are just amazing!

Green bubble corals are lovely (if it doesn't die during shipping!). Sometimes I get lucky and find one that is almost blue!

The best red gonioporas come from Sulawessi!

One of the more rare corals that took me a long time to id. This echinomorpha will form a nice green rim under halides!

As with many corals, the best metallic caulastreas come from Sulawessi!

Beautiful red palys are one of my favorites!

A basket of gorgeous Bali brains! The best ones come from not Bali, not Lombok, not Sumbawa, not West or East Java, not even Sulawessi, but you gotta go more east to Flores!

This brownish paly colony is actually red, and sometimes called "people eaters"!

Nice pink palys are always wanted!

Pink zoanthids are harder to find (believe it or not)!

Unusual zoanthid color morphs are always nice to see. This one has sky blue centers with bright green skirts!

Some donuts and trachys ready for export!

Sometimes we must pack the corals early in the morning. We usually spend the night organizing and preparing for the shipment.

A 150 watt double ended 14k metal halide pendant is rigged up at night. This is the only way I can actually see the true colors of the corals!

A basket of fungias ready for export!

Very unusal Acanthastrea lordhowensis. The heads are big as my thumbnail!


Ok guys that is it for today. I'll post more cool coral pictures in a few days. Don't forget to check out the "comparison shopping tool" at!


Aquaculture Northern Bali

November Corals Collection Part. 1

November Corals Collection Part. 2

Aquaculture - November Shipment

Coral Showcase - September 2008 Inventory

Holding Facility's Corals Collection Showcase 2007