Red tree sponge

Discussion in 'Soft Corals' started by Bigfish, Oct 22, 2017.

  1. Bigfish Copepod

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    Has anyone had success with either tree sponges or ball sponges?

    I see that KP Aquatics offers both of these, but want to check the success of others.

    My plan was to add one to a 29G biocube that I've had for 2 years.

  2. Humblefish

    Humblefish Dr. Fish Administrator LARC Supporter

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    Navarre, FL
    I've kept ball sponges. Inevitably they seem to break apart over the years. If it comes into contact with any air (i.e. during acclimation) then it's done for.
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  3. BluewaterLa

    BluewaterLa LARC Boil Master Administrator LARC Supporter

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    @Humblefish is correct about not getting them exposed to air as many sponges do not last long after being exposed to air.
    Depending on the type of sponge, some can be exposed to air for short periods of time while being transferred into a tank for example while others are best to not have any exposure to air at all.

    Personally I have not noticed much if any harm with ball sponges on my live rock after being transferred from tank to tank. Sure I have lost some but think it was from other causes such as lack of food or exposure to intense light where they once were in the dark or shadowed.
    I have a blue finger sponge that I have all but given most of it away that can be cut/ ripped and then placed into a bag without harm form air exposure.
    Though I have an interesting encrusting form of blue sponge that completely died off due to the live rock being transferred from tank to tank, I though I would never see it again but almost a year later there is a tiny spot of it making a come back.

    Just wanted to list some of my experiences with sponges that I have commonly in my tank.
    I did buy a Orange tree sponge some years back from a LFS and asked the employee not to lift it up into the air due to this reason to which I was told it doesnt make a difference. Well this sponge was exposed to air while being placed into a bag of water and before I got home that evening the sponge was already melting away in the bag. It was just a pile of detritus by morning.
    Humblefish likes this.
  4. GPReefer

    GPReefer Let the Fin Begin! Administrator LARC Supporter POTM Winner

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    Lake Charles
    Brings to mind a story... About 25 years ago, our local aquarium club made a trip to the Houston Zoo Aquarium, for a behind the scenes tour. This was back in the day at the very infancy of "reefkeeping." Most of us had fish only tanks, but a few had started with adding live rock. The red tree sponges were always available, but no one could really keep them for very long.

    During the tour, we came upon a tank that had numerous red tree sponges in the tank. I asked the guide what they had to do to keep the sponges alive and so perfect looking? The guides's response was not really what we expected to hear - "When they die, we get new ones." :)
  5. clsanchez77

    clsanchez77 Reefkeeping Extremist Global Moderator

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    I have heard the same story regarding replacement over sustainability. Their low price relative to corals does not help the situation. I would love to get my tank stocked up with some sponges and I am looking at one or two specific types that would give me the look I want.

    One of my pet peeves in this hobby is we determine something is hard or unsuccessful in the past so we tape it off and then tell everyone else "You can't do this because I can't". My other pet peeve is people dismiss the failures of the past and then repeat with the same result. LOL, there is a nice gray area in between there and coming here first was the first step. One thing you will learn about me is I love to answer questions with references to reef keeping magazines. Being that sponges are an interest to me, this one is no different :D

    The first two references are some older ones from when I first entered the reef side of this hobby. I lost my tank in a hurricane before I got my first sponges. The tank was 2-3 years old at that point. That last link, I have not read yet, but I will now that I looked it up for you.

    I have not had much other time to elaborate here and won't until my three are done flag football. I encourage you to try it out, but I implore you to read about our failures in the past and try expand on that.

    Good luck and share the pictures!
    Humblefish likes this.

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