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Innovative Marine Aquariums

The Official way to Dip and Acclimate SPS


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I thought I would make a nice little thread about the proper way to acclimate/dip SPS into your reef tank. As you can never be too careful in regards to acquiring an unwanted pest!


First you are going to need a little information in regards to why dipping is important. Dipping is essential for removing unwanted pests such as bacterial pathogens, Flatworms, Acro Eating Flatworms, Red Bugs, spiders and others from entering our tanks. You can never be too careful when it comes to your reef tank and all the time and money you have put into it. For you sps to simply be wiped out in a month because you were too careless to spend 45 minutes giving your corals a good proper cleaning.


Now you are going to need a few things;


Corals ;)

Container to treat in (I am using a small 3.5 gallon rubbermaid type bin)

Tooth brush (I use this one for everything reef related)

Razor Blade (for cutting and grinding interceptor into powder)

Coral treatment medications



Revive Coral Bath

Flatworm Exit

Interceptor (Dog and Cat heartworm medication used to kill Red Bugs and other crusteacans)

Razor Blade

Tooth brush



Corals packaged very well



Opening up the cooler



Note inside with the list of corals and the numbers that correlate on the bags.



Then arrange the corals by number so IDing them is easier later on. 1-6 on the top and 7-12 on the bottom.

I let them sit in this container like this for 10 minutes in order to adjust to the room lights as it is important to allow the corals some relaxation time after being shipped in a dark package and out of a running system for about 24hrs. It is advised to dim the lights in the room if possible.



While the corals are adjusting to the light in the room take the time to cut up a small amount of the Interceptor. Using a razor blade simply cut the given amount into small pieces then turn the blade sideways and smash the small pieces into a powder and pour that into a small glass of tank water. Let this sit in the water and dissolve while you begin to unbag the corals.



After unbagging all the corals and adding the water to the container, again 1-6 on the top and 7-12 on the bottom I add all the treatment medication;, 4 capfuls of ReVive, several drops of FWE (flatworm Exit), and the now completely dissolved Interceptor.



Let the corals sit in this mixture for 25 minutes. While they are in the dip take the time to ready your plugs for mounting. I use ceramic ones that need to sit in water for several minutes so that air bubbles are mixed in with the glue making it puff up around the base of the coral, grab your super glue you are going to need it as well.



After allowing them sit in the water for 5 or 10 minutes the plugs will stop producing air bubbles and will be ready for use.



Take a plug and add a dot of glue to it and let it sit for about 15 seconds to help start the curing process.




Attach a given coral to the plug by holding it to the glue dipping it underwater and giving the coral a slight twist to lock it into the now cured glue.



Now that 25 minutes are nearly up take 1 coral at a time and give it a spin and or twist in the dip to remove anything that is still clinging to the coral. Also give the corals a light brush with the tooth brush in order to clear anything that may STILL be on the coral. DO NOT scrub the coral do this very lightly you do not want to damage the corals tissue.


Now add the corals to some fresh tank water for about 5 minutes in order to reduce the stress from the dip.



Now go to your tank and turn the lghts off in order to begin the acclimation to the tank. After the rough ordeal, I simply add them to the tank with the lights off straight from the holding container with my tank water. If you have a QT it is now time to add them to that instead.

After letting the corals adjust to the tank with no light, roughly an hour or so I put a piece of eggcrate over the top of the tank where the corals are located and turn on the actinics. And now.. sit back and enjoy your newly added PEST FREE corals :)






Feel free to add any suggestions or comments. Thanks for looking and make sure to ALWAY dip every coral you purchase, you can never be too safe.

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make sure to inspect for eggs. those are easily missed.


That is exactly what the toothbrush is for, if there are any eggs they will be brushed away and left in the dip to stay out of the tank for good :)


Oh btw the last two pics of the corals were taken inside the tank underwater with my new Olympus Stylus 1030SW waterproof, shockproof, crushproof, and freezeproof camera :-D I love it!!!!

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Good info how are u able to get the interceptor from the vet?



As long as you have a dog or a cat they'll usually prescribe it for you, you can tell them it's for your reef tank and take them the pertinent info. Without a pet they probably won't give it out, since they need to prescribe it for its intended usage.

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  • 2 weeks later...

great thread there Pship and good call on the Interceptor you can also buy milbemycin oxime powder was well it is the active ingerdent in Interceptor

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First off... great thread.. I ALWAYS dip and inspect my zoas but I've neer dipped my SPS before. I guess I've been lucky.


Where did you order those frags? They look awesome - I want some of that Blue Tip Purple Slimer!


Is it as fast a grower as green slimers? I bought a frag from Proraptor2 last year and have fragged it 3 times now and it's still huge.

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  • 6 months later...
so no one but me drip acclimates sps? i thought that's what you were supposed to do. apparently i am wrong-o

There may not be a right and wrong. I don't do it, I prefer to dip them (even this is only when i have the dip available), and put them right in the tank.

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Tagging. This is grail.


So you can add all dosages @ once?


Do you think it's possible to put 1 whole tablet of the interceptor?





if you're using the "large dog" pill of interceptor, 1 whole tablet i believe treats about 380 gallons at the proper dosage. i usually double or triple the dose and toss in 1 whole tablet and let it dissolve.

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  • 2 months later...

So maybe i am not reading correctly but there is no prolonged period of time where you are adding water from your system to allow adjustment to your water param's? The only water added from your system is the interceptor solution?

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the second part is fresh tank water w/o anything in it. it adjusts for 5 minutes or so. you could probably let it sit in that a little longer if you don't feel like it's been acclimated long enough. to each his own!

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  • 7 months later...
There may not be a right and wrong. I don't do it, I prefer to dip them (even this is only when i have the dip available), and put them right in the tank.


Drip or any kind of acclimating for corals other than temperature can be extremely damaging, always just temperature acclimate, dip, and place into the tank.

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When you put them on the plugs, will they grow off of that and onto rock?

Also, if you just want to put the coral on LR what do you do?


Sorry, im new to this... :blink:

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good dip but most people wouldnt know how to get or beable to get interceptor which in my opinion is one of the key components of that mixture there.

Edited by Tony
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