Where do aquarium corals come from?

There are coral suppliers in various parts of the tropics who export around the world. The majority of coral suppliers today are found in Indonesia (Bali, Jakarta, Java), but also Australia, Tonga, Vietnam, Fiji and the Solomon Islands.

In Bali, the first mariculture (marine culture farm) was started by Vincent Chalias, at Bali Aquarium, around 20 years ago. Many coral suppliers have copied this format, where an otherwise empty lagoon is converted into a coral growing sanctuary. The coral in these facilities are fragmented from broodstock colonies, which are carefully selected for their species, colour and growth form. These coral colonies are cut and glued to smaller disks, then tagged for species identification and grown out until they reach a size ready to export (typically 5-10cm). Mariculture farms bring other marine life to the area, as they inevitably create an artificial reef, as well as attract tourism and provide jobs for many locals. We consider this the most ethical and sustainable way for coral suppliers to export coral.

There are many coral suppliers and exporters in Australia. Because the Great Barrier Reef is so far offshore, mariculture is less of a viable option, so the farming of coral tends to be done at land based facilities. Wild corals are sustainably collected, under the careful restriction of the Australian government.

We do our best to import coral as little as possible, since everything has a carbon footprint. Our goal is to provide 100% aquaculture coral only within the next 10 years.

Are corals safe to handle?

Most corals are safe to handle when placing in your aquarium, however, we strongly urge the use of latex gloves and eye protection, especially when handling zoanthid and Palythoa species. Frag Garage does not take responsibility for any bodily harm caused by the mishandling of coral purchased through our website.

How much flow should I give my corals?

After water chemistry, water flow is the next most important aspect of a thriving reef. It’s important that every coral, regardless of its ideal flow requirement, has active flow passing through and across its entire surface. The best way to gauge the amount of flow for an individual coral is to look at its growth structure and polyp extension ‘PE’. SPS corals often form networks of tightly knit branches. In order to achieve flow through every part of the coral, they require quite a bit of well distributed, strong current. Dead flow areas can lead to issues like STN (slow tissue necrosis), whereas flow that is too high can damage coral tissue and restrict PE. Often SPS corals will grow into their environment, so once flow for a system is established, it is important to not change anything too significantly. Always observe polyp extension in order to know whether a coral is getting too little or too much flow. LPS corals generally require quite a bit less flow than SPS. It is important to monitor PE, as a LPS polyp will only open part way if it’s receiving too much flow.

Our Water Parameters and Dosing

We maintain parameters via combination of calcium reactors and dosing bulk additives for the ‘major three’. We find that there are benefits to both methods; Ca reactors for the consistent addition of balanced elements and dosing for its fine tun-ability. Breaking down reactor media also helps add Po4 to the system. No3 and Po4 are tested weekly. Protein skimmers are often turned off, sometimes for weeks at a time, to maintain sufficient nutrient levels. Feeding daily with a variety of good quality frozen foods also helps play an important role. It is important to keep in mind that every system is very different in terms of its nutrient uptake, so what works for one system, my not be right for another.

SPS System: calcium 440, alkalinity 8-8.5, magnesium 1350, salinity 1.025, Po4 .03-07, No3 5-10
LPS System: calcium 430, alkalinity 8-8.5, magnesium 1350, salinity 1.025, Po4 .05-.1, No3 10-15

What additives do we use in our systems?

There are countless products on the market that claim to improve colour, promote growth and coral health. Some may or may not have a distinct impact on our systems, but rarely make a profound difference. It is our philosophy to keep expensive additives to a minimum and stick to the essentials. Most of the colour in corals is going to come from sufficient nutrient levels, stable water chemistry and exposure to strong light. Micro and trace elements are important, but often can be replenished by regular water changes (with a good quality salt), Ca/Alk additives which contain trace, calcium reactor media, etc. For this reason, the only additives we use on a regular basis, outside of the ‘major three’ (Ca, Mg, carbonate), are: amino acids (Brightwell or Fauna Marin) Iodine (often removed via carbon) and ESV Bionic Nitrate to keep No3 in range. Addition of bacterial strains can be helpful when starting a new system, but nothing beats using healthy live rock from an established reef.

Livestock Guarantee:

New Policy: During the colder months of the year between November and March, we only cover full DOA on shipments sent via West Jet Cargo or shipments sent via Fedex which are held for pickup at a major Fedex pickup location near your address. This ensures that coral will not spend too much time on delivery vehicles. In the rare case of losses/DOA, we will find a fair compromise.
We ensure that every piece will be floated and packed as carefully as possible. In the colder months, high quality heat packs will be used. In the rare event that a coral arrives DOA (dead on arrival), please send us  a picture of the specimen within 2 hours of unboxing your order. Usually a cloudy or extra smelly bag is an indication that the coral is having a rough time.

• We currently do not accept any returns/exchanges. Shipping costs cannot be refunded.
• Livestock is not guaranteed when an incorrect address or contact phone number is provided. Please double check!
• In the case of a residential delivery, the package must be signed for on its 1st delivery attempt or picked up the same day it arrives.
• If the package is sent via airline to airline cargo, the package must be picked up within 2 hours of the flight’s landing time.
• We do not issue refunds; only frag replacements. If the same or similar frag is not available you will be issued store credit instead (not including the shipping cost)
• We are not responsible for any delays due to carrier  and/or weather complications. In such cases there will be no guarantee on live arrival, however, we often replace orders in this case regardless.
• Proof of a dead coral must be provided. Cloudy bag, photo of skeletons, decaying tissues, etc.
• DOA replacements are shipped at buyer’s expense or can be added to a  future order.

Shipping Rates/Options


With many years of perfecting our shipping techniques and narrowing down the most reliable couriers/cargo agencies, we ship with confidence across Canada. For remote locations or provinces further east from Quebec, please check with us before placing an order to confirm we can reach your location via overnight shipping.

Table Rate (FedEx or Purolator): The table rate lowers as the order total goes up, all the way to free shipping for orders of $500+. Table rate is as follows:

Spend $100-199.99: $60
Spend $200-249.99: $55
Spend $250-299.99: $50
Spend $300-349.99: $45
Spend $350-399.99: $40
Spend $400-449.99: $35
Spend $450-499.99: $30
Spend $500+ FREE!

Harbour Air Same Day Shipping (BC only: Richmond and downtown Vancouver pickup) select “Harbour Air” at checkout. This Service is charged collect to the customer, however, this method still qualifies for free shipping on orders $500+

FREE Canada-wide shipping for orders $500+! (there may be some exceptions for heavy or sensitive orders requiring services such as West Jet Cargo, Air Canada Cargo or morning priority)

West Jet Cargo Shipping. This method is recommended for high value, extra heavy or group orders. Please check with us before choosing this method, as not all airports are applicable. Rates are $120, $60 for orders $500+ and Free for orders $850+.

We reserve the right to deny full coverage of ‘free shipping’ in the the case of extra heavy shipments or orders going to remote areas.

Is there an order minimum?

Yes, because we often eat some of the cost on our shipping and shipping supplies, we only ship orders which reach a $100 minimum. There is no minimum for orders which are placed for local pickup.

Where are you located:

Frag Garage is a web-sales, home-based business, located in Victoria British Columbia, Canada. We also partner with a local saltwater shop, Blue World Aquariums.