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My suncoral tank

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  1. #1

    Default My suncoral tank

    So for some time now, I've been keeping suncorals in a small tank behind my reef. I enjoy feeding their little mouths each night, and I have something to look at when I'm in the sump area. I thought I'd take a few pictures this evening as an update.

    The tank has no lighting, since these corals don't need it. That keeps algae from taking hold, which is a perk. A tiny pump pushes water from the sump into the tank, a small powerhead creates flow in the tank, and it drains back into the sump.

    Yesterday evening, I had another rock given to me with some suncorals to care for, and hopefully in time they will recover. They looked pretty rough (upper left corner of this picture).

    suncoral tank2 - My suncoral tank

    And from the front:

    suncoral tank1 - My suncoral tank

    suncoral flashlight1 - My suncoral tank

    Also in this tank, I have a small Dendrophyllia colony. There are 4 major polyps and 4 smaller babies around the base.

    dendro flashlight1 - My suncoral tank

    dendro flashlight2 - My suncoral tank

    dendro oo flashlight - My suncoral tank

    And finally, this tank also has a few hitchhiker Orange Ball Anemones. They are in my reef, and some snuck in here.

    orange ball flashlight - My suncoral tank

    Visit Melev's Reef

  2. #2
    roadcrew - Reefkeeper CR Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2006


    thats pretty cool.

  3. #3
    dberrong - Reefkeeper CR Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Hiawassee, Ga.


    What camera are you using to take those Pix?

  4. #4

  5. #5
    Whoyah - Reefkeeper CR Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Grants Pass, OR


    Those are awesome. Do you feed them every night? What are you feeding them? I really need to target feed mine more I guess.

  6. #6


    I got a couple of PMs asking about feeding suncorals, so here are more pictures. First the food: mini mysis and cyclop eeze thawing in a small bowl of tank water. The pipettes are those small ones that come with a refractometer, or perhaps you got some of those free ones from a club member (Doug, I think) some time back.

    suncoral food - My suncoral tank

    Once thawed, I turn off the return pump to my suncoral tank, and then squirt a small puff of food over each polyp every gently. I don't want the coral to retract, but rather catch the food. (Not unlike how we try feeding aiptasia so they'll injest the toxic meal we've offered.) Three pipettes worth of food is offered each night, so it really isn't a lot of food. It is target fed to avoid waste, keeping the food where it needs to go.

    suncoral feeding2 - My suncoral tank

    suncoral feeding1 - My suncoral tank

    suncoral feeding3 - My suncoral tank

    After 10 minutes, I may feed them again. You can feed them two or three times in a 15 minute period. However, if you feed them daily, once seems to be enough to not only do the job, as well as to encourage growth like I showed above.

    Don't forget to turn the pumps back on.

    Here's a small video of how I used to feed them latenights in my 55g:
    http://www.melevsreef.com/video/sun.wmv (3.8 megs)

    If you have to do this in a tank with thieving shrimp, cut off the top of a 2-liter bottle and use that as a feeding dome. Press it down over the coral so that it sinks into the sandbed and stays in place. Squirt food through the top of the dome where the cap used to screw on.

    I would suggest you drill a few holes through the dome to allow a little circulation in the dome just in case you forget to pull it off like I did once. I discovered I'd forgotten overnight, and the coral was very pale that next day. It healed up after a few days, but rather than risk that blunder again, I drilled some holes to allow some oxygen exchange.

    Visit Melev's Reef

  7. #7
    tileman - Reefkeeper CR Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2004


    When I feed my dendro's I have to keep the pipette in the tank and constantly fend off the fish untill the dendros have completely finished their meal. It's funny, it's always the same few fish that I have to fend off. They know I feed them the same time I feed the rest of the tank.
    225g Full reef, 300g total Deltec AP702, PF601S, FR509. 18 months old
    65g reef, Euroreef skimmer, 4yrs old

  8. #8
    Sparky - Reefkeeper CR Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Brooklyn WI


    Nice Sun Corals!!! That is a good idea having them in there own tank. It is a pain keeping the fish a shrimp away while feeding.

  9. #9
    Sea~Horse~Whisperer - Reefkeeper CR Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Wisconsin Rapids, WI



    I bought a sun coral that was in very bad shape. ($10) I have been feeding it BBS since I'm constantly hatching it to feed my seahorse fry. It is comming around and has quite a few new polyps on it. I want to switch to mysis but I'm afraid the tiny polyps wont be able to eat the larger pieces. Should I mix the bbs and mysis together?

    Do they sting at all? I was thinking of putting it in my fry grow out tank since there is tons of BBS in there at all times.(1-3 mo. old fry not newborns) (5 feedings a day) No fish, low light, and plenty of food.


  10. #10


    I used to have my H. reidi (3" tall) in this exact same tank filled with zoanthids and a Dendrophyllia. The Seahorse never seemed bothered at all by it.

    What you can feed the suncorals is frozen (and thawed) Cyclop-Eeze. The food is tiny and the polpys can take it in easily. I buy mini mysis and it seems fine no matter what size my suncoral polyps are. They eat whatever they can.

    Your fry might steal the food from the suncorals though, since the food will be somewhat stationary. Just something to think about.

    Visit Melev's Reef

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