The proper acclimation of a new arrival is vital for the animals health. Improper acclimation can have negative effects even months down the line. Livestock are under an intense amount of stress during shipping. We recommend that the following procedure be followed immediately upon receipt of the livestock.
Proper Acclimation Process
Step 1: Turn the Aquarium Lights OFF
The livestock has been in complete darkness for the last day, and will not immediately adjust to high output aquarium lighting. By turning off the lights, you remove a possible source of stress for the new arrival. Overexposure to light in general can be an issue with new additions to your reef tank. It only takes a day or two under high light conditions to severely damage a coral that was grown under more modest illumination.
Step 2: Empty the containers into a slightly larger tub
Typically we use a small plastic tub to acclimate the new corals. If you like, you can empty the containers with the coral into separate tubs, however when we receive new corals, we tend to place them in the same tub. The purpose of this is to provide enough volume to add in water from the aquarium as well as prepare a pest control dip solution.
Step 3: Add about 1/2 cup of Aquarium Water every few minutes
The slower you add the water the better. Corals and other invertebrates are sensitive to fluctuations in pH and especially salinity. Some aquarists prefer drip acclimating corals making this process even more gradual, but one should consider the temperature drop-off that occurs during this time as well. The entire acclimation process should not take more than 30 minutes.
Step 4 (recommended): Pest Control Dip
Here at Staub Aqua Farm we advocate using pest control dips to reduce the risk of hitchhikers and parasites making it into your aquariums. We dip our corals with Coral RX, even when moving corals between systems, but there is no guarantee that the threat is eliminated. The two types of dip used most often is Coral Rx for pests such as flatworms and nudibranchs and Lugol’s Iodine for bacterial infections.
Step 5: Release the specimen into the tank
Find a suitable location towards the bottom of the tank, where the new coral will receive the appropriate flow and lower light. It will need a few days to adjust to the new lighting. Gradually move the Coral to your desired placement over the next couple weeks. If you have access to a quarantine system, we recommend using the above method to first acclimate the new arrival. After the quarantine period is over, repeat the procedure to introduce the specimen into the display tank, unless parameters are the same in both tanks, then adding immediately would be fine. (Preferred)
Proper Water Parameters
Specific Gravity: 1.024-1.026
NO3-: Near 0
Alkalinity: 8.0-9.0 DKH