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MR DBTC Intro and statement of purpose
Welcome to the Manhattan Reefs Don’t break the Chain (DBTC) Forum--- home for all activities related to our exciting new program for advancing and “Paying Forward “ the hobby.

The DBTC program was conceived and implemented by our friends in the Bay Area Reefers (BAR) club and we are very honored to be chosen as the first club to participate in their “Inter-club DBTC .” The concept is rather simple and harkens back to earlier days in the hobby, when giving frags away was the norm and selling was practically unheard of. While MR strongly encourages it’s members to trade with each other, this is NOT a trading program, rather it is a system for giving or “paying forward” coral frags with no immediate returns. The program is designed with few rules other than no sales or trades are allowed. The participants make up the terms of their “giving” and it is up to the good conscience of the recipient to carry out those wishes. Unfortunately, it's not possible to "keep people honest". The hope is that by the time a reefer has become a club member and been introduced to the spirit of community and sharing that a hobbyist club offers, they'll see the benefit of behaving in a community oriented way. The DBTC program simply assumes that the vast majority of participants will behave correctly and proceeds from there. It's a true "Pay it Forward" program both in terms of the actual coral being exchanged and the spirit of generosity and goodwill that goes with it. To this end we envision very little direct moderation from MR Administration other than removing inappropriately placed posts and perhaps some tidying up of threads for recordkeeping purposes. If members are abusing the system, they will be quickly found out by the participants and simply shut out of future transactions. All we ask at this time is that all DBTC transactions ( offerings, completions and future paying forward) are posted in this forum so we can use the information in the future to create a DBTC database. Below is the program description from the BAR website:

What is DBTC?
DBTC, stands for Don't Break The Chain--the idea is that it works like a Pay It Foward (PIF) type program where someone donates a particular coral fragment with the idea that the person(s) who get said fragment will grow it out giving to others, who will in turn make free fragments for others, etc.

I still don't get it. Why do we have this?
The idea behind it is to help spread coral species throughout the region. This will hopefully lessen the impact of taking corals from the oceans, as well as help spread diversity throughout the area. The idea was a way to push a non-greedy way of helping get corals out there to people. If you can get a coral fragment from a local farmer, that means less of an impact on the oceans. A great many of the "abundant" corals are not in any way mari/aquacultured since it's still profitable to hack them out of the seas.

Ok fine, so how do I get some free corals?
While you will get "free corals" eventually, this is not what this program is about-- this is about sharing and being willing to share with others. While inevitably there will be a bit of a "greed" factor that seeps in-- especially with more desirable corals-- you have to understand the idea is that more will be offered in the future. The way it works is that each coral grows exponentially (ideally), so while it may take some time the coral will be offered again. This program is NOT about stocking your empty tank with new corals for free, what it is about is helping grow a renewable resource and making it available to others for free.

Time? How much time do I need to wait?
It depends entirely on the amount of corals that are initially offered, and the type of corals. Some corals, specifically soft ones, grow quite readily so can be fragmented and dispersed quite rapidly. Others, like the small polyped stony corals grow relatively slowly, some grow a few inches a year! So it might take longer. Patience is the key, again this isn't to stock your tank full of corals so there should be no rush on getting one.

I don't have any Limited Edition or otherwise rare corals, can I still participate?
It doesn't matter, this program is not about distributing rare corals--if that happens all the better --however what is needed is a sharing of all corals not just rare ones. You have those brown mushrooms, offer them up-- just don't be sad if no one wants any.

Ok, I have corals I'd like to donate, who do I give them too? What do I do?
Alright, now we're talking! First you give them to whomever you wish as they are your corals after all. Second you might want to list some rules, or follow some standard rules for who gets them. Third, start a new topic in this forum and type in all the gory details. Some advice 1) Give a brief description of the coral in the topic you make, Blue Acropora or whatever 2) Give a bit more detailed of a description of the coral in the body of the message. If you don't know the exact species who cares, it's hard, it's a stick, call it an Acropora-- chances are you'll be correct and someone else will most likely help you identify it. Besides most corals can't be accurately identified beyond the genus. Mention what lighting you have it under, how high in the tank it is, the flow conditions,fish load, or anything else that's out of the ordinary that you might think is relevant. 3) A picture is worth a thousand words! Get a camera, take a picture, don't worry if it's not the best, just give an idea of the overall color/shape of the coral. 4) Clearly state your terms for this DBTC transaction, and what you would like to see happen with the coral.

A great example of what a DBTC Offering post might look like is this:

MR DBTC Acropora Nana

Being offered.

Acropora nana- You will receive a one inch frag of Acropora Nana that has started to branch at the tip. This is an excellent starter SPS as it is somewhat easy to keep alive, but difficult in my experience to get to color up properly. This particular specimen was given to me by Calireef as a small colony almost two years ago. He actually gave me two small colonies, I gave this one to HAVIC, who returned it to me when my tank crashed.

It came back to my tank somewhat browned out, and has started to color up. I have also noticed that some of the polyps have started to turn green. So potentially a purple acro with green polyps, which is not all that unusual for a. nana.


1. You must offer a frag of something (does not have to be SPS) to Mr. DBTC before you pick it up.
2. You must pick it up from me, I am generally only available after 8 on weekdays and live in Astoria.
3. If I lose the mother colony, you must offer me a frag.
4. I have final say on who gets the coral, some things I will generally consider (but don’t have to) in making my decision are the following; your experience and ability to keep the coral alive, and the length of time and the level of your involvement with MR.
5. I can change the rules of this offering.
6. And finally you must offer all future frags of this coral as MR DBTC and require all to whom you give it, to do the same.


That’s really it. We’ll see how this evolves organically and make some adjustments if need be. For now, let’s all begin to “Pay it Forward” MR DBTC style……

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