What Are Bounce Mushrooms?
Have you ever seen a coral that looks like it has bubbles on its surface? No, I’m not talking about the ones that pop when you touch them (although that would be fun). I’m talking about the Bounce Mushroom corals, one of the rarest and most mysterious corals in the reef aquarium world.
These corals have bouncy polyps that come in a variety of colors and patterns, making them a stunning addition to any saltwater tank. But what are they exactly? And how do you care for them? In this article, I will answer these questions and more, so you can decide if you want to join the Bounce Mushroom club.
Bounce Mushroom corals are a type of Rhodactis mushroom coral that originates from the Indo-Pacific region. They are not a different species but rather a mutation or variation that occurs randomly in some Rhodactis mushrooms. No one knows exactly why or how they develop these bouncy polyps, but some researchers think it has something to do with irregular or intense lighting from advanced aquarium lighting. It is widely joked about that the large bubbled vesicles (bounce bubbles) are tumors caused by the lighting.
Fortunately, it is not harmful to the coral, and they can live and thrive under proper conditions. Whatever the cause, these corals are very rare and expensive, so if you ever see one for sale, you might want to grab it before someone else does.
I remember the first time I saw a Bounce Mushroom coral at my local fish store. It was a bright orange one with yellow bubbles and green stripes. It looked like candy corn on steroids. I was instantly mesmerized by its beauty and uniqueness. I asked the store owner how much it was, and he said $500. I almost choked on my saliva. I had never spent that much money on a single coral before. But I couldn’t resist its charm. I decided to splurge and buy it as a birthday present for myself. Best decision ever!
In this article, I will share with you everything you need to know about Bounce Mushroom corals, such as their care requirements, feeding habits, placement tips, and benefits. By the end of this article, you will be able to decide if you want to add a Bounce Mushroom coral to your reef tank or not. Trust me, once you see these corals in action, you will be bouncing with joy.
Bounce Mushroom Care Guide:
Bounce mushroom corals are not divas. They don’t need a lot of pampering or special treatment to thrive in your reef tank. In fact, they are one of the easiest corals to keep, making them ideal for beginners or lazy reefers (no offense).
However, that doesn’t mean you can neglect them completely. Like any living creature, bounce mushroom corals have some basic needs that you should meet to keep them happy and healthy. Here are the main water parameters that you should monitor and maintain for your bouncy buddies:
- Temperature: 76° – 82 °F
- pH: 8.1 – 8.4
- Salinity: 1.023 – 1.025
- Alkalinity: 9 – 11 dKH
- Nitrates: <10 ppm
- Phosphates: <10 ppm
- Calcium: 350 – 450 ppm
- Magnesium: 1250 – 1350
These are pretty standard values for most reef tanks, so you shouldn’t have too much trouble keeping them stable. Just make sure to do regular water changes, test your water frequently, and use quality salt mixes and additives.
Now, you may be wondering: do I need to feed my bounce mushroom corals? The answer is: not really. Bounce mushroom corals are photosynthetic, which means they get most of their energy from the light and the symbiotic algae that live inside their tissues (zooxanthellae). They are pretty self-sufficient and don’t rely on external food sources.
However, if you want to spoil your bounce mushroom corals a little bit, you can offer them some meaty snacks once in a while. They will appreciate foods like Coral Feast, mysis shrimp, or brine shrimp. Just don’t overfeed them; it may pollute the water and cause them to lose their bounce.
Bounce mushrooms are not demanding at all when it comes to their care requirements. They are very adaptable and forgiving of minor fluctuations in water quality. As long as you provide them with a stable and clean environment, they will reward you with their stunning colors and bouncy polyps.😍
Placement and Lighting
Bounce mushroom corals are not picky about where they live in your reef tank. They can handle a variety of lighting and water flow conditions as long as they are not too extreme. However, there are some tips and tricks that you can follow to make them feel more comfortable and look more beautiful.
First of all, you should place your bounce mushroom corals at the bottom of your tank, preferably on the sand bed or the ledge of a rock. This way, they will not be exposed to high lighting or strong water movement that can stress them out or damage their tissues. Plus, they will have more room to expand and contract their polyps without bumping into other corals or fish.
Secondly, you should avoid placing your bounce mushroom corals on sharp substrates or rocks that can cut or tear their delicate flesh. Remember, bounce mushroom corals are soft and squishy, not hard and spiky. They need a smooth and gentle surface to rest on. If you have to place them on a rock, make sure it is well-rounded and free of jagged edges.
Thirdly, you should provide your bounce mushroom corals with low to medium lighting intensity (PAR 50 – 150). Bounce mushroom corals can adapt to different lighting levels, but they prefer the lower end of the spectrum. Too much light can bleach them or cause them to shrink. Too little light can make them lose their color or grow slowly.
The best way to provide your bounce mushroom corals with optimal lighting is to use LED lights with a full spectrum of colors. LED lights are energy-efficient, long-lasting, and customizable. You can adjust the intensity and color of the light to suit your bounce mushroom corals’ needs and preferences. You can also create different lighting effects to enhance their appearance and mood.
For example, you can use blue light to make your bounce mushroom corals glow in the dark like neon signs. You can use red light to make them look more vibrant and contrast with the green algae. You can use white light to make them look more natural and realistic. You can even use different colors for different times of the day to simulate sunrise and sunset.
As you can see, bounce mushroom corals are not fussy about placement and lighting in your reef tank. They can thrive in various locations and under different light sources as long as they are not too harsh or too dull. As long as you provide them with a cozy and cozy spot at the bottom of your tank with low to medium lighting intensity, they will be happy and bouncy.😊
Water Flow and Movement
Bounce mushroom corals are not static. They like to move and groove with the water flow in your reef tank. They use their polyps to expand and contract, creating a bouncy and bubbly effect that is mesmerizing to watch. They also use their polyps to catch food particles and oxygen from the water.
However, bounce mushroom corals are not fans of strong currents or jets that can blow them away or rip them apart. They prefer moderate water flow that is gentle and consistent. Too much water flow can stress them out or injure them. Too little water flow can make them stagnant and prone to algae growth.
The best way to provide your bounce mushroom corals with optimal water flow is to use a wavemaker or a powerhead that can create a natural and varied current in your reef tank. A wavemaker or a powerhead is a device that pumps water in different directions and speeds, creating waves and turbulence that mimic the ocean.
A wavemaker or a powerhead can help you create a more realistic and dynamic environment for your bounce mushroom corals and other reef inhabitants. It can also help you prevent dead spots, improve gas exchange, and distribute nutrients and waste more evenly.
However, you should be careful not to place your wavemaker or powerhead too close to your bounce mushroom corals or point it directly at them. This can create too much pressure or friction that can harm your bounce mushroom corals. You should also adjust the settings of your wavemaker or powerhead to suit your bounce mushroom corals’ needs and preferences.
For example, you can use a lower setting for your wavemaker or powerhead during the night when your bounce mushroom corals are resting. You can use a higher setting for your wavemaker or powerhead during the day when your bounce mushroom corals are active. You can also use different settings for different parts of your reef tank to create more diversity and interest.
For the most part, bounce mushroom corals are not rigid about water flow and movement in your reef tank. They like to move and groove with a moderate water flow that is gentle and consistent. As long as you provide them with a wavemaker or a powerhead that can create a natural and varied current in your reef tank, they will be happy and bouncy.😊
What do you call a bounce mushroom coral that likes to dance? A fun-gi! (Sorry, I couldn’t resist.)😂
Compatibility and Aggression
Bounce mushroom corals are not bullies. They are peaceful and tolerant of other corals and fish in your reef tank. They don’t have stinging tentacles or sweeper tentacles that can harm their neighbors. They don’t release toxins or chemicals that can irritate their tank mates. They don’t compete for space or food with their fellow reef inhabitants.
However, that doesn’t mean you can place your bounce mushroom corals next to any coral or fish you want. Like any living creature, bounce mushroom corals have some preferences and limitations when it comes to compatibility and aggression. Here are some tips and tricks that you can follow to make sure your bounce mushroom corals get along with everyone in your reef tank:
- Choose compatible corals and fish with similar care requirements and temperament to your bounce mushroom corals. For example, zoanthids, ricordeas, clownfish, gobies, blennies, etc.
- Avoid aggressive or stinging corals and fish that can harm or annoy your bounce mushroom corals. For example, anemones, torches, hammers, frogspawn, triggers, angels, butterflies, etc.
- Provide enough space and distance between your bounce mushroom corals and other corals and fish to prevent accidental contact or overcrowding. At least a few inches of clearance is recommended.
- Monitor your bounce mushroom corals and other corals and fish for signs of stress or injury, such as shrinking, bleaching, tissue loss, infection, etc. If you notice any problems, act quickly and remove the source of the problem or relocate the affected coral or fish.
I once had a friend who placed his bounce mushroom corals next to a torch coral. He thought they would look nice together and create a contrast of colors and shapes. He was wrong. His torch coral stung his bounce mushroom corals with its long and powerful tentacles, and they became inflamed and infected. He had to separate them and treat them with antibiotics. Luckily, they recovered after a few weeks and returned to their normal condition. Moral of the story: don’t be like my friend.
As you can see, bounce mushroom corals are not aggressive or incompatible with other corals and fish in your reef tank. They are peaceful and tolerant of most reef inhabitants as long as they are not too aggressive or stinging. As long as you choose compatible corals and fish and provide enough space and distance between them, they will be happy and bouncy.😊
Propagation and Growth
Bounce mushroom corals are not stingy. They are generous and prolific when it comes to propagation and growth. They can reproduce asexually by splitting or budding, creating new clones of themselves. They can also move around the tank by detaching from their base or releasing fragments, finding new spots to settle and grow.
However, that doesn’t mean you can leave your bounce mushroom corals to their own devices and expect them to multiply and spread. Like any living creature, bounce mushroom corals have some needs and challenges when it comes to propagation and growth. Here are some tips and tricks that you can follow to help your bounce mushroom corals propagate and grow successfully:
- Provide optimal water conditions, lighting, and water flow for your bounce mushroom corals to encourage them to split or bud naturally. Depending on the individual coral and the environment, this may take weeks or months.
- Perform manual propagation if you want to speed up the process or control the number and size of the new fragments. You can do this by cutting or tearing your bounce mushroom corals carefully with a sharp and sterile tool, such as a scalpel or scissors.
- Heal and attach the new fragments to a suitable substrate, such as a frag plug, a rock, or a shell. You can use glue, rubber bands, or toothpicks to secure them in place. You can also place them in a separate container or a frag rack until they heal and attach.
- Monitor the new fragments for signs of recovery or infection, such as polyp extension, coloration, tissue growth, etc. If you notice any problems, act quickly and provide them with proper care and treatment.
As you can see, bounce mushroom corals are not difficult or slow when it comes to propagation and growth. They are generous and prolific when it comes to creating new clones of themselves. As long as you provide them with optimal conditions and perform manual propagation carefully and correctly, they will be happy and bouncy.😊
Bounce mushroom corals are amazing creatures that can captivate and delight any reef hobbyist. They are easy to care for, adaptable to various conditions, compatible with most tank mates, and generous with propagation. They also come in a variety of colors and shapes that can enhance the beauty and diversity of your reef tank.
If you are looking for a coral that is both stunning and simple, bounce mushroom corals are the perfect choice for you. They will bounce their way into your heart and into your reef tank with their bouncy and bubbly polyps.
I hope you enjoyed this article and learned something new about bounce mushroom corals. If you have any questions or comments, feel free to leave them below. I would love to hear from you and your bounce mushroom corals.
If you want to learn more about bounce mushroom corals or other reef topics, check out my other articles or products on my website. You will find a lot of useful and interesting information and resources that can help you with your reef hobby.
Thank you for reading, and happy reefing!😊
Q: How much do bounce mushroom corals cost?
A: Bounce mushroom corals are rare and expensive corals that can cost anywhere from a few hundred to a few thousand dollars, depending on the coral’s size, color, and quality. They are highly sought after by reef hobbyists who are willing to pay a premium for their unique and stunning appearance.
Q: How do I know if my bounce mushroom corals are healthy?
A: Bounce mushroom corals are healthy when they have full and bouncy polyps that extend and contract regularly. They should also have bright, vivid colors that do not fade or bleach. They should not have any signs of stress or injury, such as shrinking, tissue loss, infection, etc.
Q: How do I make my bounce mushroom corals more bouncy?
A: Bounce mushroom corals can become more bouncy when they are exposed to moderate water flow that helps them expand and contract their polyps. They can also become more bouncy when they are fed occasional meaty foods that stimulate their polyps. However, you should not overdo it, or you may cause them to become bloated or indigestion.
Q: How do I prevent my bounce mushroom corals from moving around the tank?
A: Bounce mushroom corals can move around the tank by detaching from their base or releasing fragments. This can happen when they are unhappy with their location or when they want to find a new spot to settle and grow. You can prevent them from moving around the tank by providing them with a suitable substrate, such as a frag plug, a rock, or a shell, that they can attach to securely. You can also use glue, rubber bands, or toothpicks to fix them in place.
Q: How do I deal with algae growth on my bounce mushroom corals?
A: Algae growth on bounce mushroom corals can happen when they are exposed to too little light or water flow, which makes them stagnant and prone to algae growth. You can deal with algae growth on your bounce mushroom corals by increasing the light intensity or water flow in your tank to make them more active and less susceptible to algae growth. You can also manually remove the algae with a soft brush or a turkey baster. You can also use natural algae eaters, such as snails, crabs, or shrimp, to help you control the algae growth.