SPS care tips for beginners:
SPS corals are known as the more difficult to keep corals but with proper care and selection they can be fairly easy and add some fantastic colures and features to your tank. the following are tips on how to have best chance at success. these are tips on how we keep our sps corals, everyone and every set-up are different so make sure to do plenty of research and gain lots of different points of view.
Stability is key. Keeping water parameters stable is a major factor in growing healthy hard corals. Large swings in certain parameters will cause bleaching and colure loss in many species of SPS coral. Make sure your tank is mature and that you have your water parameters stable before purchasing SPS corals. Some people run their tanks in less than ideal parameters but keep the quality stable and still get good growth and colure.
Test the water parameters regularly. This expands on stability, if you do not test on a regular basis your flying blind and may be missing a shift in parameters that if left unchecked could wipe out all your corals or cause damage. Invest in a good test kit and test the water at least once a week so you can make gradual changes or adjustments if needed.
water flow is vital. Most SPS corals enjoy lots of flow, it keeps their skin healthy and helps to reduce algae growth around their tissue.
always dip your new corals. Even the best stores have pests at some point or another in their systems. Shops regularly buy in new stock and hold a large amount of stock so its bound to happen at some point even with the most careful of shops. Dipping your new corals will help to remove any pests and save major problems if certain pests find their way into your system.
always check stock yourself and look for healthy stock. Don't just take a shops word for it that the coral is healthy. We regularly check all our stock but things can be missed. We always encourage questions on why something may look odd or possibly sick and we will always give honest answers and wont sell unhealthy stock. If you notice large patches of skeleton, skin falling off of coral, or very dull brown coral its best to give it a miss. some corals will have natural patches where 'shading' has occurred due to an area of the colony not receiving the same light or flow as the rest. but the base should not be receding in large amounts.
find a good store. Don't buy coral from somewhere you don't get a good feeling about or that has poorly run tanks. chances are if they cant be bothered to remove any dead or poorly looking corals they are not checking the water or checking for pests. Make sure the staff are willing to help and give advice. Your investing allot of time and money into the hobby make sure its spent with someone who is willing to give good, honest advice. Its certainly not a hinderance to a good shop if you ask lots of questions.
start with easier species such as montipora and stylophora. we have a great range of starter SPS coral in store.