Since 1990 all stony corals have been listed in Annex II of the Washington Convention. Since then, the trade in hard corals has been strictly regulated. Exporting countries can set new quotas each year - even up to complete export bans. In the course of climate change, and global warming in particular, further restrictions on the trade in hard corals can be expected in the future.
But does that mean an end to reef tanks?
Certainly not! There is a wonderful alternative: captive-bred fish and aquacultured corals.
Aquacultured organisms have many advantages over their wild counterparts. They grow up in closed systems and adapt better to the typical conditions from generation to generation. For example, changes in water chemistry are more likely to be tolerated. In addition, aquaculture of marine ornamental organisms allows endangered species such as the Banggai cardinalfish (Pterapogon kauderni) or giant clam (Tridacna sp.) To be more frequently and legally available on the market.
The top 3 reasons why you should buy aquacultured fish and corals:
1. Aquacultured specimen are healthier than wild catches
Parasitic infestation and diseases are significantly reduced in corals and fish from aquaculture.
The reasons are:
• Intermediate hosts of some parasites in aquaculture facilities are missing
• there is the possibility of quarantine and targeted treatment
• an efficient water treatment is used, which reduces germs
• a short transport time minimizes the general stress level and thus the susceptibility to diseases
2. Cultured fish and corals are acclimatizedd to a life in a reef tank
Coral and fish from aquaculture are used to the typical conditions in a saltwater aquarium.
• artificial lighting
• higher stocking densities
• commercial food
The consequences are:
• more intense and stable colorations of corals
• less territorial fish
• easy-to-feed animals
3. Aquacultured fish and corals are a sustainable alternative to wild catches
The purchase of captive-bred marine organisms protects wildlife and coral reefs.
In addition, the transport routes are much shorter and direct. Last but not least, unlike wild harvesting, there are hardly any transport losses.
More and more species can now be successfully aquacultured and every year new ones are added. Support this development and decide if possible, for fish and coral from aquaculture!