getting started


New member
is it worth it? i just want to start a small project just because no lfs around here has a quality product. but i want to be able to offer some of the folks in my area some of the more beautiful pieces of sps, and clams, maybe even some lps. i don't want a huge setup just a few tanks.

any advice would be greatly appreciated.

Is it worth it???

Is it worth it???


Is it worth it to pursue your dreams? You'd better believe it.

Better to live and dream than to never dream and die wishing things could have been different. You make the difference!!!

A man (person) who truely follows his/her dream cannot fail. If failure comes then it was only a wish and not a dream. If you fail at a dream, pick yourself up, EVALUATE your mistakes and start over correcting your mistakes.

Educate yourself and persue your dream, my friend.


Wow, that's a tough ???. There are many and it depends on where you are starting from. If you are a total Newbe, the best advice I can give is to post a new thread here and ask the general membership what books they recommend for Newbies.

If you are asking me what books are good for learning the coral fragging business and you are not a newbie, then I'd highly recommend Anthony Calfo's "Book of Coral Propagation". You can get it direct from the author at his website . He'll autograph it for you. (A nice touch)

You would want to have Eric Broneman's book "Aquarium Corals, Selection, Husbandry and Natural History". There are others. You could pose that question on a new post here as well.

These will get you started. Remember, learning is a life long adventure. I've been strictly saltwater for thirty years and I learn something new everyday. Ask, seek out information, read constantly. If you have that kind of passion this is a worthy profession. If you are haphazard or wishing, it won't happen. You've got to have passion for whatever you do in this endeavor.

Oh by the way did I mention a MILLION DOLLARS would be nice too. :D If you want to see what I'm in the process of building go to my web site, The Cultured Reef. If you'd like to be updated as to our progress, please join the "Members Only Club" and be sure to confirm your membership by clicking on the link that is automatically e-mailed to you. And if you have time sign the guest book and put a pin on our map to show your location in the US. That sounds like a lot but it's all quite easy.

If you have questions you'll find our toll free number on the web site, give me a call.

Good luck.
Hi Brian!

Hi Brian!

is it worth it?

That depends on the reason(s) you are in it for....if you love personal self gratification, have a love/obsession/addiction for the hobby, dont care so much about the $$ (atleast for a while), have alot of time on your hands and love learning more and more about the hobby then buddy you are in for a ride!

Reefs Rock has given you some sound advice! I have learned alot from those books especially Anthony's book, and there is also another thread here is the link, for his NEW books

Anthony Calfo's NEW books coming

Let me know if I can help in ANY way
I am really only a novice in this department, but I have traded a lot of coral frags, and my tank has only been up a year and a half! My mushrooms are probably my best producers... I have a large variety and the lfs just love them! Right now I am watching a frogspawn coral do double time in producing several new branches... about 10 I think! And in the two months I have had it it has branched on the main polyp about 1 cm! I was really surprised as when I got this piece it came down with brown jelly (ick!!!) And I lost all but one branch/polyp! You would never know to look at it now.
I like to do the home propagation for two reasons,
1. it fills my tank up with the corals I wanted in the first place and I don't have to fork out bucks to make it look full
2. and this is the major reason, all my corals are one less coral coming from the wild. Wild supplies was the main reason I stayed away from saltwater for so long, but then I saw a pic of a mandarin and I knew I was hooked! I spent a year just researching all that I could about saltwater, and was very disappointed at the survival rate of the mandarin. Setting it up was very trying. And then we had a big quake and the water in our well went haywire and took out my angel (Singapore) I was so angry and frustrated, then the guy at the lfs said he brings in purified seawater from the local aquarium and he would sell it to me on a reg basis. I have never had a water problem since, and attribute the water to much of my success.
And as for the mandarin... well I did break down and buy a female who had stayed in petcos tank for about two weeks and still looked chubby... She did thin down the first couple of months... but she's now very healthy and eats everything that goes into the tank, flake foods included. Her fav is bloodworms. She will go out of her way and even knock the clarki clown around to get them! I have had her for over a year now!
So go for it and save a reef! At least that's how I feel!
Also I should say that if a coral isn't doing good in my tank I tend to find homes for them in a tank they will do good in... even if I have to give them away... they must survive!
( hey cool, spell check on this thing!:) )
Hi felix

Welcome aboard Reef Central, a great place to learn and share your experiences.

You are one of the few I've heard of that actually did some extensive research before leaping into a saltwater aquarium. Congratulations! :)
Thanx, but I must say that it was more out of fear then anything else!!! I didn't want to lose anything, and considering my bumbling about in this hobby I feel that I have lost very little... cross my fingers!