The home aquarist is often faced with a coral that is increasing in size and threatening to overshadow corals lower down the reef. To ensure the lower corals remain healthy they need light and it is usually not practical to move the overgrown specimen. It is easier to cut it, or in other words ‘frag’ it. Whether the aquarist occasionally ‘frags’ one coral, or has a dedicated ‘fragging’ tank, it all assists the wild reefs.
Most of the fish in our aquariums are from the wild reefs though there are an increasing number that are being bred. Home aquarists are having more and more success in the breeding venture and those who are dipping their toe in so to speak are trying with the ‘easier’ clownfish.
Many of the wild reefs are in trouble and under pressure. I have always regarded the marine hobby as a huge resource and ‘back-up’ for the wild reefs, though of course the hobby cannot hope to have anywhere near the life diversity of the reefs. Hobbyists though care for their livestock and it usually follows that they are concerned about the wild as well. It then follows that we all should do what we can to assist the wild reefs.
One of the major and understandable fears that aquarists have is ‘How do I do it? ‘Fragging’ a lovely and healthy coral could be nerve racking though corals are not harmed if it is done properly. Then there is the pride of having produced a new coral to hand to an aquarist friend of take to the LFS (local fish shop).
Both ‘fragged’ corals and bred fish seem to be generally tougher in the aquarium than their wild counterparts and this appears reasonable – they’ve never known the sea, their only home has been an aquarium.
If the aquarist wishes to try breeding fish again the procedures need to be known. A successful breeding with a tank full of new fish generates immense pride. These too can be taken to the LFS or some passed to aquarist friends.
The following link gives a list of ‘how to do it’ procedures. There’s information on ‘fragging’ different corals and breeding different fish. In addition there’s information about low impact marine aquariums.
On arrival at the website click on ‘Articles’ at the top of the page.