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  1. Announcing Acropora Challenge I !
    by steve/ (Steve Tyree) (Tue, 10 Aug 1993)

Announcing Acropora Challenge I !

by steve/ (Steve Tyree)
Date: Tue, 10 Aug 1993
Newsgroup: sci.aquaria,rec.aquaria,alt.aquaria

    Acropora Challenge I   (Announcement and description)
 An event titled "Acropora Challenge I" will begin 9/25/93.
Up to 11 fragmented colonies of an _Acorpora sp._ coral will
be given to reef keepers through the SFAS Reef Study Group.
The main emphasis will be with collecting data on how each 
reef ecosystem effects coral colony ecomorphology, vitality
and growth. The exact parameters to collect are still being
determined. This challenge is based on the growth experiment
proposed by Dr. Bruce Carlson earlier in the year which re-
cieved publicity via the FAMA editorial section. Although at
least one reef system which utilizes a scrubber will parti-
cipate in the event, it will be much more than a scrubber 
verses skimmer contest. Many different reef methodologies 
are based on these two filtration systems. These differen-
ces combined with additive and environmental replication 
variances should provide plenty of potential research. 
 The propagated colonies which will be utilized for this
event, were created from an acropora specimen on 7/28/93 
and are composed of 11 branches ranging from 1.3 cm to 3.5 
cm in axial length. Seven of the colonies were from 2.3 cm
to 2.8 cm in length. These fragments were wedged into small
cleaned pieces of coralline encrusted reef rock and should
become encrusted into the rock by the event start date. This
will provide very healthy base fragments which will be fully
recovered from fragmentation. The procedure utilized has 
produced some very nice propagated colonies.
 These fragment source branches were taken from new captive 
growth areas of a colony which experienced explosive growth 
in a natural rhythmic fashion at the end of last year. I am
providing these fragments for the event in the hopes of ex-
panding our known research concerning environmental require-
ments of acropora species coral. The exact speciation for
this coral is unknown, but a best approximation utilizing 
"Corals of Australia and the Indo-Pacific" provides the fol-
lowing - _A. tenuis_, _A. nana_ or _A. cerealis_. Identify-
ing this coral is complicated by the change in ecomorphology
which has occurred in captivity. Hopefully a coral biologist
or researcher will be able to accurately identify the spe-
ciation sometime in the future.
 The roman numeral I was added to the event title because it 
is likely that additional events similar to this one might 
occur whenever an acropora experiences natural growth in one 
of my captive reef ecosystems. I prefer to use captively
grown fragments for events that are supplied with stock from
my reefs and at least two more specimens are beginning to 
undergo this growth phase. Other events similar to this one 
but sponsered by others might utilize colonies produced via
different methodologies. One reason for keeping these events
localized is that data collection would be facilitated by 
the proximaty of the captive reefs. This policy could be 
changed in the future.
 The only repayment this fragment supplier would like is 
transportation costs to the event for specimen distribution
and copies of the research collected for at least the first
year and hopefully longer. It is conceivable that events 
similar to Acropora Challenge I will require an actual pur-
chase of each fragment. This however assumes that the de-
mand for these fragments increases like it already has be-
gun to. Acropora Challenge II has already been reserved and
will probably involve 6 propagated colonies late in this

 Steve Tyree - Reef Breeder and Sponser of 
                                   "Acropora Challenge I"

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