This is the king of the corallimorphs as far as I am concerned there are none that can compare to the color combinations that these mushroom corals come in except for Florida ricordea. One would think since that they are mushrooms that they are very simple, easy and there for hardy corals to take care of. This thought would be far from the truth, with 10s of 1000 imports of this coral coming into the country they are in the similar percentages of death rate as Elegance corals. I cannot count how many threads have been posted on many forums about these corals and them melting for what seems to be no reason. I personally have had many a purchase go south 1-2 weeks after acclimation. In most cases it is some form of bacterial infection that seems to infect these corals at a high rate. There are many color forms of the Ricordea Yuma with the most sought after being the Hot red and Fluorescent pink. Both of which I have spent $1000+ over the years and have nothing to show for it other then a good thrashing from the wife. In fact the one I have had the longest just melted a couple months ago after a year in my tank but that is another story. Over the years of observation on these corals in captive systems I have gathered quite a few ideas to help with getting these corals over the 2 week hump( this is what I call it). In most cases of melting after acclimation it is the first 2 weeks that the infection will show itself. Sometimes longer but this has been the rule of thumb for what I have personally seen and in talking to some other Ricordea collectors. Ricordea Yuma enjoy the same conditions as most other corals parameters in the proper ranges that we reefers keep Ca 400, Alk 8+/-, Nitrates 0-10, Ammonia 0, Nitrites 0. I have noticed that when alk drops to lower levels they tend to not expand and look as nice much in the same manner as Ricordea Florida and other soft corals. The 2 week hump. Most of the high end Yuma that we see posted on forums are usually sold over the internet unless you live in an area like California where most if not all indo pacific imports come into the U.S. These shops in the west coast get the cream of the crop when it comes to high end Yuma and allot of them end up on on-line websites. In the pictures they look great, healthy fully expanded and worthy of the high dollar price(IMHO). So we pay the cost and have them shipped over night to us and our tanks. Over the years I have acclimated them over and over the same way. Float, temp acclimate, turkey baster some water into bag over time etc.....One thing that has never really been discussed with these corals in particular is Photo acclimation which we will discuss later. So after we feel they have been acclimated to our water conditions we place them into our tanks. Most read on-line sites that they like really low flow, low light etc, so now they are placed in what we think is a good spot and the next day the lights come on. The lights come on and they look great and fill up and expand to show their glory. Day after day they seem to look good. We are happy with the purchase and take pics to show pics on-line to show off our new acquisition. Everybody says their Ohs and As and life goes on, so we think. What happens next from my experience and others I have conversed with is they start to shrivel and don’t expand like they did the first few days. Now there seems to be a clear most times and dark brown others slime that starts coming out of the mouth. Ooh NO! we think to ourselves what is happening? So we go on line to find some answers and what do we find? Not much as far as info when it comes to infections of Yuma, although I am sure you will find posts by a few Ricordea collectors like Madadi, Azurel(myself) and a few others. So far there has been no answers from anyone in the industry or hobbyist as to the answer to how to stop and save them. What are the signs of a sick or dying Yuma? Well first and foremost like I said they began to shrivel and spit a clear slime. If left alone they will soon be covered in a heavy slime around the base of the polyp. One thing that I noticed that had first been unknown was that these Yuma seem to all have a hole at the base of the inside of the polyp. This hole is directly across from the mouth or oral cone, It seems this infection eats a hole into the base of the Yuma from the inside out and travels into the stem and up into the polyp disk. At about this time the polyp will begin to gap open, where as the mouth expands and opens up to non-normal size and looks slack. The slime has increased and death is imminent. I have tried many things to try and save these corals and others have as well. One collector that I have had personal contact with Madadi has even tried human antibiotics to no avail. All the signs of his Yuma that died also showed the same signs as mine and others. I have dipped in SW/ Iodine, FW/Iodine, Amino acids, Furan 2, Melafix Marine, and a few others I can’t think of I am sure. None of these dips worked and the only one that has shown promise so far is Melafix Marine a Tea tree extract. I think that one of the things that is needed is a actual lab study like on the scale of E. Borneman did with Elegance corals. Photo acclimation? What do I mean by this? I have found through the years of acquiring these corals and trial and errors is that they seem to be very sensitive to lighting. Photo acclimation as I describe it is after all other acclimation procedures is placing these corals into a highly shaded area of the tank and leave them there. Here is how I have done it to the few that I have in my tank that are doing good. I find a place that still has mod flow, almost completely shaded from direct or indirect lighting. I place it there and leave it. As long as it shows signs of being healthy and it expanding I leave it till it stretches for light. Usually it has taken the ones I have bought about a month or so before they show any signs for reaching. One thing to keep an eye on is that they don’t bleach from not having enough light and in that case you will have to move them out a little bit more so they can get a small amount of light. But the ones I have had will begin to stretch for light and will need to be moved. I do not move them very far so the conditions will be about the same but lighting will increase but not by a whole lot. I then wait for them to stretch more and move again till they are in in-direct lighting. I personally have only a few that are in direct lighting or high indirect lighting and they were purchased locally. Although some of them seem to be bleaching at the moment from direct lighting and will be placed into indirect lighting to regain color and health. I have seen some reefers that keep them in direct lighting of MH, and T-5 but I have not had a single one that has made it long term in that lighting strategy. It is in my opinion that photo acclimation is the number one thing in the long term health and survivability of Ricordea Yuma. It seems that there is something that takes place with these corals during shipping that reduces the survivability of these corals. I have seen them online time and time again and have talked to many vendors that will take updated pics of them for me and they do look healthy but for some reason after shipping there tends to be an increase in the death rate. I have talked to these vendors and they have had the same issues with Yuma in their shipments also LFS’s many of which have quite ordering them for the very reason of having them melt on them. Which for them is a loss in sales and their livelihood. I plan to continue my quest for Ricordea Yuma and the elusive Hot red and fluorescent pink Yuma. If any others have anything to add lease do so, if you have saved these through chemical dips etc please let me know so I can add that to my arsenal to save these corals.