上个月,人们都为,特别是大堡礁珊瑚群的珊瑚产卵而疯狂。由于人们近几年来对珊瑚的关注持续升温,还有受到珊瑚白化的影响,使得这一事件成为近几年的头条新闻。

 

Ultra Coral Australia公司,在公司董事Nic Dos Santos的带领下一直是水族行业的领头和先锋。多年以前,他们决定成立研究部门(UCA Research),对生物有性繁殖进行研究,尽管无任何生物资料可参考利用。


 

UCA ResearchCiemon Caballes博士的带领下由UCA职员,实习生,志愿者组成,Ciemon Caballes博士同时兼任James Cook大学的ARC珊瑚研究中心的研究员。

 

在十月份满月的前几周,他们弄到了一些糖果脑珊瑚,这些珊瑚受到很多爱好者的追捧,大部分从昆士兰出口。这些脑珊瑚已经适应了他们的产卵环境。


 

脑珊瑚是释放型产卵生物,它们释放出一串串卵子和精力。产卵发生在十月满月后的第八天,太阳下山的3小时后。巨大的卵细胞非常活跃地积极聚集受精。在他们的幼体培养系统中,给予(珊瑚)幼体珊瑚藻包覆的底座和其他基质来着床,并且其中相当多的是成功的。

 

它们的沉降率超过50%,考虑到这些珊瑚能够产生数百万幼虫,这是一个相对较高的数字,远远高于海洋其他生物的卵的沉降率,其他沉降率估计只有3%左右,通常,从受精到孵化需要10天左右的时候,一旦它们定居下来,这些珊瑚幼虫会被放置在有大量成体珊瑚的地方,这样它们就可以很快获得虫黄藻,加速他们的生长。


 

Ultra Coral Australia最近在研究脑珊瑚幼虫的定居偏好,不久的将来会公布其研究成果。这些脑珊瑚成长为商品会花费数年,不过这已经足够揭示珊瑚,尤其是LPS的有性繁殖的过程,这会为水族行业带来极大的经济效益。

 

这是我们的产业向前迈出的非常好的一步,希望我们能在未来看到一个有性繁殖珊瑚的重要市场转向。祝贺Ultra Coral Australia公司引领我们行业的未来,并祝愿他们在未来拥有更多种类的珊瑚时取得更大的成功。

原文:

The last month has been crazy with many peoples now involved with the mass spawning of corals, especially on the Great Barrier Reef. Most people concentrated their efforts with Acropora species, being the most affected by coral bleaching, which has made headlines in the past couple years.

 

Ultra Coral Australia, through its managing director Nic Dos Santos, decided to be proactive and lead this industry in the right direction. Few years ago, they decided to create a research department (UCA Research) in their own facility and started studying sexual reproduction of the most valuable species for our industry, where almost no biological data are available.

 

UCA Research is made up of marine biologists (UCA staff, interns, student volunteers) under the supervision of Dr. Ciemon Caballes, who is also an adjunct research fellow at the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies in James Cook University. 

 

Few weeks ago, just before the October full moon, they secured some mature Micromussa lordhowensis, which are highly sought-after and the most exported individual species of corals in Central Queesland. Broodstock colonies were acclimated in their spawning system.

 

The Micro Lord is a broadcast spawner, releasing bundles of eggs and sperm. The spawning happened 8 days after the October full moon, 3 hours after sunset. Huge, positively buoyant gamete bundles were collected and cross-fertilized. Larvae were given coralline algae encrusted plugs and other substrates in their larval rearing system to settle on, and quite a few of them were successful.

 

They achieved over 50% settlement rate, which is relatively high, considering the millions of larvae these corals are able to produce, and much higher than what would be achieved in the ocean, which is estimated at around 3% only. It usually takes up to 10 days after fertilization for the larvae to settle and metamorphose into a coral polyp. Once the larvae settled, they were placed in a system with many mature colonies so they can acquire zooxanthellae symbionts and accelerate their growth.

 

Ultra Coral Australia is currently studying the settlement preferences of this species, and will publish their results in the near future. It will take a few years before these become available for sale, but they demonstrated that sexual reproduction of corals, even LPS, has the potential to be an economically viable alternative for the industry.

 

It’s a very good step forward taken by our industry and hopefully we can see a significant market shift towards sexually propagated corals in the future. Congratulations to Ultra Coral Australia in leading the way to the future of our industry and we wish them more success with more species of corals in the future.