The Bowser Paly
Its pretty much the most hyped zoa in the hobby: some say its a super colorful rainbow, others say its just an over-priced over-exposed CAR. The Bowser paly inspires multi page arguments about its lineage and who actually has real Bowsers, but Im hoping that this thread can settle all disputes and become the ultimate Bowser reference thread.
The polyp was introduced to the hobby by Jay Painter of Aquariums In Motion back in 2009. It quickly became a highly sought after polyp, but was a known melter as a lot of people over fragged their polyps in an effort to make their money back. Most of the polyps ended up in the hands of hobbyists and the strain appears to have virtually died out in the hobby. I believe Zach at The Digital Fishroom has some of the only polyps from this strain remaining. Its characterized by its extremely slow growth, its dislike of being fragged, and the large orange ring on the oral disk.
History Of The Strains
This is a picture of Nano Fin's (Zach) Bowser
This picture was posted by primetime back in September of 2009 and is one of the oldest pics of a Bowser on the net.
Jeremy at Dream Corals started selling Bowsers starting in 2010, which ended up being similar, but slightly different then the original strain. It had a much faster growth rate and the orange ring on the disc is much smaller. Due to the faster growth rate it is much more widely found throughout the hobby, with most of the polyps of Bowsers that have publicly traded hands being of this strain. Several vendors and prominent hobbyists have obtained these polyps and due to the ensuing controversy not sold or traded them as Bowsers. KTARs new Waalaaa Magic paly appears to be of this strain as old posts and photos back up. This strain is the one that caused most of the controversy with Bowsers being colored up CARs, though in comparison pictures they are a much much brighter polyp.
Ktars Bowsers/Waalaaa Magic Palys lineaged back to Dream Corals
BiG-D's pic with lineage back to Dream Corals
The third strain is propogated by Akwarius over at Planet Zoa. Its a wild strain that maintains all the original characteristics of the original Bowser as far as being a slow grower that needs high light to attain its best coloration. There is a pic on his website but I dont want to steal it so hopefully he will be kind and post one here.
Comparisons betweens Strain 1 and 2
All credit is to Zach (Nano-Fins) for the following info he posted a while back.
So I hope this answered any questions that remained in peoples minds in regards to what are "Real" Bowsers, or it at least gave people some more food for thought in regards to this awesome polyp. If anyone has anymore pics of Bowser polyps or anecdotes regarding its history, post away!