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Acanthastrea Fragging 101

Discussion in 'Coral Propagation and Aquaculture' started by mikejrice, Jul 10, 2015.

  1. mikejrice

    mikejrice Barracuda M.A.S.C Club Member


    The method I use for fragging the majority of hard corals is primarily the same with the cutting tooling being a Gryphon band saw.

    Cooling liquid used is fresh mixed saltwater with enough iodine to color it a light amber. This helps to disinfect cuts as they're made which has shown to greatly increase frag survival.

    All corals are stored during cutting in a small bucket holding water taken directly from their home aquarium. This water is used both to keep them wet as well as for rinsing any flesh away from cuts while I'm working on them.

    All finished, and rinsed, frags or trimmed colonies are soaked in Brightwell Aquatics Restor dip to insure that minimal flesh is lost.

    Both soak buckets are rinsed and replenished between colonies to reduce the risk of interactions between loose flesh of different coral species.

    Notes about acans:

    Acans are one of the corals that will bear significant advantages if corallite boundaries are followed, so when cutting these corals, I always try to follow directly along the top of corallite walls.

    As with most LPS corals, cutting frags as thinly as possible will help to accelerate growth.

    Acans build one of the most dense skeletons I've come across, so they can be quite hard to cut. Be sure to take your time and let the blade do the work.

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    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 29, 2018
  2. SeaMonkey

    SeaMonkey Copepod M.A.S.C Club Member

    Nice write up. Thanks for all the advice.
  3. ReeferMatt

    ReeferMatt Barracuda M.A.S.C Club Member

    Any advice for fragging acans that are ball shaped from life in the sand bed?
  4. mikejrice

    mikejrice Barracuda M.A.S.C Club Member

    I'd probably score all the way around it to break it in half without needing to cut all the way through. After that, it should be easier to cut it down further.
  5. Shaunv

    Shaunv Sardine M.A.S.C Club Member

    Any suggestions on fragging acans without the use of a band saw?
  6. tomtom2245

    tomtom2245 Amphipod M.A.S.C Club Member

    Depending on how thick they are, I've used a dremel with a diamond cutting wheel on with great success multiple times. Just take it slow and I kept dipping the cutting wheel in water to help keep it cooler. Finish up with an iodine dip.
    mikejrice likes this.
  7. Shaunv

    Shaunv Sardine M.A.S.C Club Member

    Ok, thanks. I may have to give that a try.
  8. mikejrice

    mikejrice Barracuda M.A.S.C Club Member

  9. mikejrice

    mikejrice Barracuda M.A.S.C Club Member

    Sent from my SM-G920P using Tapatalk
  10. mikejrice

    mikejrice Barracuda M.A.S.C Club Member

    Micromussa lords (Acans) never cease to amaze me with how dense their skeletons can be. Can't believe I used to frag these with a dremmel! Anyway, here's a few of my favorite acans from recently. [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]

    Sent from my SM-G920P using Tapatalk
    SynDen likes this.

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