Season Your Frag Plugs

nim6us

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Recently I was watching a video, I wish I could remember who's to give them credit, but they mentioned 'seasoning' their frag plugs. The topic was about coral propagation and the presenter had a passing comment where he said he would throw a load of frag plugs in the sump of his DT months ahead of actually doing any fragging, then when he needed them he'd just fish a few out for use.

The thought process being if they have time to sit in your sump and collect good bacteria and other bio-organisms that when you do need them and put them in your frag tank it stops nuisance algae from growing. Personally I know that's such a pain for me! You frag up a nice looking acro and before the cuttings can base out the plug is covered with funky green/red algae.

I've been reefing for years and never heard of this method. However I gave it a try and sure enough I've had frags in my grow out tank for 2 weeks which are still pristine white with film alage growing on the rack around the plug. It really is amazing! So amazing I thought I'd share in case this was new information for anyone else.
 

revhtree

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I like it!
 

Rusty_L_Shackleford

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Recently I was watching a video, I wish I could remember who's to give them credit, but they mentioned 'seasoning' their frag plugs. The topic was about coral propagation and the presenter had a passing comment where he said he would throw a load of frag plugs in the sump of his DT months ahead of actually doing any fragging, then when he needed them he'd just fish a few out for use.

The thought process being if they have time to sit in your sump and collect good bacteria and other bio-organisms that when you do need them and put them in your frag tank it stops nuisance algae from growing. Personally I know that's such a pain for me! You frag up a nice looking acro and before the cuttings can base out the plug is covered with funky green/red algae.

I've been reefing for years and never heard of this method. However I gave it a try and sure enough I've had frags in my grow out tank for 2 weeks which are still pristine white with film alage growing on the rack around the plug. It really is amazing! So amazing I thought I'd share in case this was new information for anyone else.
This is exactly why I ran my tank with very little light seeding dry rock with live, and why so many people have algae issues with dry rock. Algae reproduces and grows FAST. If you don't let other stuff get a foothold first, of course it's going to take over vecause it has no competition. I started my lights off at 5% for just a few hours a day once I consistently noticed life pods feather dusters, etc, popping up on the glass. Once the rocks were no longer bright white and developing a bit of a tint, Then I slowly increased the photo period and then slowly ramped up the lights, also adding CUC slowly. 6 months in and I haven't had any algae issues. I'm currently doing the same with my wife's tank we just set up.
 

Lebowski_

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Salt Bae Steak GIF


oops, should have read OP
 

ORReefer

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I started putting blank plugs in my tank a few months back. It was inspired by the same observation/frustration. Glad to know some of you have had longer term success with this. :)
 

jda

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It is along the same lines as why dry/dead rock tanks have most of the ugly problems... they don't have anything already on the surface and the dinos and hair have nice sterlie places to grab hold. Even surface/film bacteria can keep a lot of the nasty things at bay.

Think of it as live plugs vs dry plugs in the vein of live rock vs dry rock.
 

shakacuz

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i've been doing this without this ideology/reasoning for months. good to see there being some reasonable thought process to why he does it and now i can justify me doing so too!
 

BranchingHammer

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Same, I've done this for years without really thinking about it mostly just to get some biofilm growth on the brand new frag plugs so they don't look so artificial when I frag. The established biome on the plugs may also help with other problems like algae growth etc.
 

Alexopora

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I do this as well. I would transplant some of those small limpets onto the frag plugs as well, as they generally keep the plug clean and only allow those hard green algae to grow on the plug.
 

bushdoc

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That's give me an idea of establishing new business- "Mature Frag Plug Farm" and selling them online.
 

Daniel@R2R

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This is good practice for sure! I'm also thinking about how this can be helpful in the same way that rock rubble is for your tank by providing additional surface area for bacteria to grow as a benefit to the reef tank. It's a win all the way around!
 

MoshJosh

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Throw a mesh bag of these in the sump. . . media and pugs all at once!!!

 

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