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Attaching Mushroom Anemones

By Various Authors. Posted to reef-l emailing list, Wednesday the 16th to Thursday the 17th of February 2000.

What's the best way to "transplant" loose mushrooms. The LFS gave me a bunch of loose ones today. Do I need to ruberband them to a rock or just let them be?

Matthew Hennek

An avid reefer must have at least 6 things on hand to propagate or even relocate/spread your corals.

  1. Cyanoacrilic glue (super glue, spellings probably wrong anyway) Put in freezer before use, it makes it a little thicker = EZer to work with
  2. Underwater appoxy, don't bother with the high priced pink kind, once cured it doesn't look much better until coral encrusts over it
  3. Plain old fishing line. great for attaching leathers and other soft corals
  4. A SHARP (can i stress this even more) pair of scissors
  5. A pair of wire cutters (not strippers) rinse off with fresh water after EVERY use
  6. Iodine supplement- for those who are cutting. many if not most people in this hobby agree that iodine may help to prevent infection in corals.

Use super glue, first apply 2 drops to your finger (assuming your not extremely sensitive to it, it'll peel off in a day or two, rub this in your tank where your going to place shroom. Now damp the base of shroom on a paper towel to get rid of moisture, apply 2 drops to shroom, quickly put in tank into possition. Might I add that super glue takes a long time to harden in the air but it hardens almost instantly in water so move! Make little half circles with the glue points until you start feeling a slight tug. Reduce water flow somewhat to that area because super glue is strong but not elastic at all. Have fun and happy reefing. By the way rubber bands can work but I don't like using them because they grow brittle fast in salt water and break.

Eric Borneman

If the mushrooms have any loose sand or rock at their pedal disc, you can use superglue to attach them to rock. Epoxy will not work well with this application.

Matt has given you instructions on how to propagate mushrooms. Since you have loose mushrooms, I doubt you will be cutting them. No need for those cutting tools, or the poisons. The use of his word, "belief," in the comment on coral infection prevention by iodine is a good choice of words. I have Jerry Falwell's number too, if you need it (grin).

If the mushrooms are completely loose, you can sew them onto rock with the fishing line, or alternately use some plastic netting (like bridal veil or the material that bags of pearl onions come in) to secure the mushrooms onto some rock or rubble until they form their own attachment.

Tom Voytovich

A completely *natural* approach is to just place the loose mushrooms in your tank. They will eventually find a completely satisfactory (to them) place to settle. Otherwise, I prefer the netting/bridal veil method. I have had very poor success rates with adhesives and mushrooms. IMO, mushrooms have such a powerful natural ability to secure themselves, I recommend you play to that.

Mike Kirda

Another method which the aquarists at Shedd Aquarium have had good luck with is to cut the bottom out of a 2 or 3 liter soda bottle, put the cap on, then partly filling the inverted top with some rubble. You can position this in a tank easily enough, usually. Then you merely throw a few pieces down into the bottle. There is enough flow to keep the O2 levels up inside the bottle, but it will not allow the 'shrooms to blow around. Typically, they attach in a week or two. You can then remove the rubble with 'shroom attached and mount it somewhere.

Joshua Clark

I've had good luck attaching mushroom cuttings using a method similar to what Eric and Mike described. On one occasion I made 4 cuttings from a large mushroom and put the cuttings in one of those plastic specimen tanks that hangs from the lip of the tank. I added the cutting along with a few small pieces of rock and let the mushrooms attach themselves. After 2-3 days the mushrooms were firmly attached and I was able to place the rocks wherever I wanted in the tank. A second time I tried this with blue and red mushrooms and got some cool looking multi-colored mushroom rocks.

Matthew Hennek

If you actually read the email I sent, at the bottom of it I adressed his problem/dilema. I said to use super glue and not epoxy. Another thing, what information are you basing that Iodine is a poison?! All soft coral, inverts with hard shells, and some hard corals require iodine. In some corals (xenia) if iodine isn't present in enough quantity the coral "crashes." I am basing my letter off personal experience, the writings of Charles Delbeek (Reef Aquarium Vol. 2), Julian Sprung (Reef Aquarium Vol. 2, Reef Notes 1-4), Birgit Schmettkamp Verlag (the modern coral reef aquarium). They all state that iodine is a trace element but it is present and it is important. Not only that but a person friend of mine, Dirk Griffen, has been importing coral for 9 years now and he swears buy dipping the corals in a weak Lugol's Iodine solution. To repress infection he keeps an elevated at 2 times the natural leve of 20-30 micrograms/Liter with no ill effect. It depends on where you are in the ocean for iodine concentrations. In Puerto Rico the concentrations average 80 ug/L. Some individuals I know through Email keep their tanks Iodine concentration at up to 1000 ug/L with great results (fast growth). If you check that bag of Salt that you throw into your tank (with water of course) more than once every month or two, oops, that poison that you were talking about is in it. If you add any coral supplements to your tank, oops, iodine. By your standards this "POISON" should've killed off both mine and half this countries reef tanks by now!

Mike Kirda

Another thing, what information are you basing that Iodine is a poison?!

Let me quote something back to you....

To repress infection ....

Lugol's is a bactricide, and, as such, is a poison Just ask the bacteria! Copper is also a trace element, and is required by all marine organisms. Without it, many basic chemical reactions which drive the organism's metabolism cannot take place. But, do you add copper sulfate to your tank?

Iodine itself is in the same category. In some amounts, it is necessary. In elemental form, it is a poison. In some salts, i.e. Potassium iodide, it is not. The question of whether it is necessary or not has not been determined, IMO. Some people see a benefit. Others do not. However the only animal that has been shown to require iodine in the water is a certain type of shark. Check the archives- this point has been discussed many, many times...

For the record, I don't dose it.

Matthew Hennek

Thanks Mike,
You are right. However, I believe that we will soon see that Iodine is required by soft coral and xenia.

Ronald L. Shimek

Well Matt,

Some points...

For starters, it seems that you really ought to do some more reading on iodine. With hobbyist kits it is simply impossible to determine total iodine concentration in your tank. Secondly, it is a defined poison for many animals including some soft corals and corals. It is a rather potent bactericide, which is why it is used occasionally as a prophylactic dip.

The data on Xenia are mixed - in many strains Iodine will initiate crashes. It will also poison many other cnidarians if present in levels much over normal sea water.

For a well fed aquarium, sufficient iodine will enter in the food to keep any animal in the system healthy.

The Delbeek and Sprung books are good for a lot of data, but they also contain a lot of mythinformation and hearsay.

Created by liquid
Last modified 2006-11-24 18:41