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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I've had this flower pot for about 9 months now. It has probably just about doubled in size since I've had it. Usually my flower pot seems like its flourishing every day, but a week ago I got my first protein skimmer. Around this time I noticed the flower pot hasn't been opening much. Anyways it's always had a couple of smaller clusters of polyps growing off its sides. I also noticed the biggest side cluster seemed to be loose, moving slightly in the current, recently while they've always seemed to be fixed. Well tonight, I looked in there and saw that the whole cluster has seeming separated its skeleton from the main colony and slipped down into the sand. Other than not extending its polyps both pieces seem to be healthy and water parameters really good.

Water Natural environment Organism Underwater Coastal and oceanic landforms

So you can see the baby cluster of polyps on the right hand side slipping down into the sand. It was previously fixed to the rest of the main skeleton similar to the pieces you can see on the left side of the flower pot.

Is this reproduction? Is it natural, or stress induced? Could the polyps not extending and the protein skimmer be related or a coincidence?

Let the speculation BEGIN!!
 

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thats interesting....

I don't know much about these other then a lot of people have been slowly raising the captivity time of them. Used to be they were very hard to care for (from what I read) and some varieties are still not very successful.

it could be related to the skimmer, but I too would like to hear what others have to say on the matter.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Hmm... I wonder if the skimmer is cleaning too much of its food from the water. If you look at my profile picture that is how it is normally extended. However, both piece do seem to be healthy for now, which is the confusing part. If it where sick I would expect a color change or dead polyps before the little buds fell off. Also, where the skeleton split between the two pieces looks very clean. Not sickly. If this isn't a method of reproduction why grow the buds at all?
 

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It sloughing its flesh off.

And the skimmer may have something to do with it. Some people believe that gonioporas like nutrient rich waters. But there really is no proof there. If they are filter feeders, then the skimmer could be removing their food source.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Strange. I turn the skimmer and filter off during feeding which usually consists of brine, oyster eggs, rotifiers, and phytofeast. So It should still be being exposed to food just fine, therefore I suspect it must be some other nutrient that the skimmer is removing. I am curious as to what that might be, especially since everything else seems to be doing fine.

Hmm... Sssscience...
 

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I had a nice 8" goniopora once. It looked nice like the one in your avatar one day. The next day, it was covered in brown jelly and sloughing all over the tank. They go downhill very fast, even if there isn't any warning.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
That's unfortunate. I was really hoping it would make it past the one year mark that everyone says they usually die after. I'll definitely keep a close eye on it to make sure it doesn't poison my tank. It takes up a lot of room in my tiny tank so if it dies it will free up lots of space, so I guess that's good. I'll try to remember to update this post if there are any changes in its condition, negative or positive, for future reference.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Well discussion is always helpful and appreciated. I separated the baby bud from the mother colony and they both started opening up a little more, but still far from the glory days. I'm gonna try keeping my skimmer off for a little while and see if there is any change.
 

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I looked around and found a few things....

from the looks of it, sounds like you got some babies!

Goniopora genus will reproduce asexually as well, by budding off a daughter colony. The parent is incused (impressed) with a calcareous nodule that grows until the weight of it causes it to break off from the parent. In captivity, propagation is not suggested. Rather just allowing the asexual production is the most effective and recommended method of propagation.

http://www.reefland.com/forum/reef-aquariums/21420-flower-pot-coral-doing-something-weird.html

http://www.ultimatereef.net/forums/showthread.php?t=592468

http://animal-world.com/Aquarium-Coral-Reefs/Flowerpot-Coral


https://www.google.com/webhp?source...WU&fp=2baa3be545978830&ion=1&biw=1016&bih=635
 

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Glad I ead the whole thread and saw all the pics, the first pic looked like a goni in serious decline just like the 3 or 4 I have tried in the past. Looks like they may be making a comeback, did you shut down the skimmer?
Tho few more people claim success with goni's no one seems to have found the magic formula that will guarantee success with them, Then again I remember 10 yrs ago or so when most anemones where considered difficult to keep past the 6 moth mark.
All I can suggest to anyone that keeps gonis or any of the other difficult/impossible corals or inverts, keep meticulous records as to feeding and all tank params, skimmer, and any other support hardware, hopefully pattern will start to emerge
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Hey, good find! Yeah it was the largest nodule (there are 2 or 3 more) that popped off and there must have been polyps underneath cause It didn't have a bare spot where it used to be.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I think I found out why it was retracted. Some how the oxygen content and presumably the aeration in general of my water dropped off. My alkalinity was high but in good range however my PH was really low. I didn't realize it cause my test kit kept telling me everything was normal. I switched kits (i've always suspected it was really old when I bought it) and the new one gave me the really low PH reading with a really high alkalinity which I read is a bad sign of poor aeration. I retested 3 times to be sure. Afterwards I added a wooden air-stone into my sump and made more surface turbulence with my return outlet and everything in my tank started responding positively to it. I will retest again later today so I can make sure the parameters don't swing to much as the oxygen levels increase.

I believe although the baby bud was probably going to pop off soon anyways, the added stress of my tank conditions provoked it prematurely. So in a way my goniopora saved my tank from a total die off by giving me a heads up.
 

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That's awesome! I have been wondering for a while what gonis did to reproduce. I have had several including my current neon green softball plus sized one. Maybe I'll get lucky and mine will split.
 
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