Anemone Fragging Time | How to Tuesday

Today on BRSTV we are going to show you how
to set up a bubble tip anemone propagation system. Hi I’m Ryan “RT” turner todays host of BRSTV
how-to’s where every Tuesday we release a new reefing related how to. This week we are
going to show you how to set up your own bubble tip anemone fragging system and show you some
tips on how to make this a profitable endeavor. First thing you should know is propagating
bubble tips is as easy as cutting them in half and letting them grow out, chopping them
in half again and so on. For you queasy folks out there this may seem mean, but this is
one of the natural ways they reproduce in the wild. In fact a sharp knife is probably
likely to be much more effective than literally tearing itself in half like it would in the
ocean. I am also sure they are happy that your propagation efforts reduce the demand
for the wild harvesting of their cousins from the ocean. Setting up a system for this can consist of
basically any tank. Preferably with no overflow, and pumps which are as anemone safe as possible.
We are going to use these large hydroponic trays. You don’t really need the stand it
is just nice because you can wheel it around and comes with a bar where you can hang the
lights. The cheapest place to get a set like this would be a local hydroponics shop because
shipping is a killer on something this large. For convenience however, we do have them on
our site. One of the things that makes this tray nice
is the high volume of working surface verses volume of water. This will allow us to grow
out a ton of bubble tips while making sure water changes and other maintenance is really
easy. The smooth surface also allows you to remove the bubble tips pretty easily. For filtration we are going to use these marine
pure biospheres. I used give gallons of them here. These spheres serve two purposes. First
they provide a ridiculous amount of filtration surface. One single sphere has over 240 square
feet of available surface area for filtration. The five gallons contains somewhere over 100,000
feet of surface area. That’s close to two football fields. What makes this media different than most
other products like this is the availability of the internal pore network. I silicone this
plumbing fitting to the top of a four inch thick marine pure block. You can how the water
just passes right through the entire thing. It pretty amazing. The second component the spheres serve, is
for something the bubble tips can bury their feet into which is also very easy to remove
them from. You could use rubble or something similar which is a lot less expensive, but
they are much harder to remove from this irregular shaped material and you can easily damage
their foot trying. I am a big fan of these low profile Neo-Therm
heaters so I will throw in a couple of these and for pumps I am going to use two the mj1200’s
with pre-filters and Hydor rotating heads. I am also going to put some rubber bands around
the filters to keep them on and prevent the bubble tips from squeezing into the intake.
While not one hundred percent foolproof this is about as anemone safe as a pump can get.
You can also use a wave maker or couple of digital timers on these pumps get the flow
randomized a bit. Other than that all you need is some light.
Really you can use just about anything but I am going to go with a pair of Kessil LED’s.
These pendants are about as versatile as they come and have amongst the lowest cost per
LED out there which makes them perfect for a project like this. In addition they are
small so they stay out of the way when you are working in the tank. All that’s left to do now is cycle the tank,
add a couple fish and add your first batch of bubble tips. You can start with as little
as one but the more you start with the faster you will get the system up to speed. Most
bubble tips can be divided every four to six weeks. So one turns into two, two into four
, four into eight, to sixteen, thirty two, sixty four and so on. Doing that math you
could be producing a thousand a month inside a year if you had the space and zero mortality.
Ok, so you don’t have that much space and you will have some mortalities, but you get
the point. Slicing them is as pretty simple. Put them
on your cutting surface. The guys at EcoTech sent us one of their propagation kits to play
with so I am using the bamboo cutting board surface that doubles as the case. I am not
going to lie and say this thing is cheep but if you have some money burning a hole in your
pocket it is pretty nice. These things are pretty hardy and I have seen
this done a hundred different ways but the general consensus is the best way is to start
by spreading the tentacles out then slice it right down the middle. That means I want
to go right through the center of the mouth and divide both the top and foot evenly. I
am going to use one of these paint scraping razorblades because it has a long ultra sharp
edge. There are two things I want to try and avoid,
first I don’t want to crush the bubble tip by pushing down because this will bruise the
tissue and make it harder for it to heal. Second, if possible, try and do it one smooth
slicing motion which will prevent you from creating multiple wounds. If you don’t make
it through the tissue with one pass, don’t just start over. Just reverse the motion and
attempt to stay within the same cutting line. Once its done put it in a storage bowl or
the tank while you do the rest. Once they are back in the tank give them a
week or two to completely heal and start feeding them. You can feed them anything from pellets
to Mysis. I personally prefer the large Hakari Jumbo Mysis but if you don’t have access to
frozen foods the freeze dried krill soaked in Selcon make an excellent option. Don’t
go crazy with the food they only need one or two each. More than that and they often
spit it out a few hours later. A handful of weeks later they should be the
same size as they were when you cut divided them the first time and ready to start the
process again. Ok so how do you sell them? The easiest most consistent way is to supply
the local stores. Getting into a store can be some work. This
is a business designed to make money and support family’s incomes so they need to have reliable
suppliers. First step is to go to all the stores with some of your product, tell them
how many you are capable of producing a month and show them some of what you have for sale.
Hopefully they will be in right away but if they aren’t, be polite. Thank them for their
time and come back again next month like this never happened. If they shoot you down again do the same thing
and come back in another month, this time if they say no be prepared to give them an
offer they cannot refuse, like here is a bunch for free. This is all about good will and
building long term relationships. Also make sure to point out all the elements
which make your product better than their other suppliers. Like free delivery, almost
zero mortality at their store because they were all grown in captivity and only been
in transport for an hour rather than flown around the world, country and even stored
in five different tanks along the way before they reach the end user. Some may also appreciate
the sustainable approach you are offering. Lastly you might have noticed I did add some
fish to this system. While it isn’t critical, it doesn’t hurt and many people think tanks
like this stay more stable long term with fish. If you have any questions about this
or tips for other reefers checkout the comments area down below. If this is your first time
with is hit that subscribe button because we do new how to projects like this every
Tuesday. See ya all next week with another episode of BRSTV.

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