The Reef Builders Studio was created to be a place of reef aquarium learning, discovery and experimentation, especially when it comes to setting up different kinds of reef aquariums. Many of us have often wondered what it would be like to have a mangrove habitat, or an anemone lagoon, or a tank full of Banggais and long spine urchins.
The Xmas Tree Worm Rock aquarium is the first of these dedicated concept aquariums to be set up at the Studio, and also the first tank to get a nice lengthy update with notes and observations. Our four colonies consisting of three Porites and one Cyphastrea host somewhere in the neighborhood of over one hundred individual worms, and that number may be growing!
One interesting ‘issue’ has been the impressive growth and size of the worms which are so big and so dense that they had started to really shade their host corals from flow and light. The three foot 30 gallon Innovative Marine EXT aquarium is now flowed with a highly programmable Nero 5 pump, and illuminated with the MaxSpect Razor 2, giving the Porites and Cyphastrea the light and flow energy to continue thriving despite their segmented worm tenants.
The last BIG question remaining for this population of Spirobranchus worms is whether it’s possible for them to breed in captivity. The first step is acquiring and conditioning potential broodstock, which this tank is doing, so now we’ll be filling in this tank with compatible coral hosts for the Xmas worm larvae to settle on should they ever be successfully spawned in this aquarium.