Check out our interview with Seth Peters and Kate Rawlinson.
written by Seth Peters
Providing majority funding (Over $10k) for the Army charged with fighting it.
In late 2013, while an Atlanta Reef Club Board of Directors member was skimming through the Facebook posts of the day, a crusade began. The power of social media has shown its might around the world, credited for outright revolutions and social movements, and now it’s responsible for an all out frontal assault on one of our hobby’s most dreaded and feared adversaries: the Acro-eating flatworm (AEFW). Marc Levenson, a perennial socialite in the reefing community, shared a video from Mark Callahan (Mr Saltwater Tank), highlighting fundraising efforts by Kate Rawlinson and Cat Dybala to conduct research on this little-understood menace. As those keeping Acro-dominated tanks already know, it’s hard enough having success with these fickle corals—balancing parameters, flow, lighting, etc—but the addition of this kind of pest can prove more than even the most experienced reefer can overcome.
The Atlanta Reef Club is a nonprofit organization of approximately 800 members, dedicated to promoting responsible reef-keeping and ecological preservation through education within the club and through outreach programs. It has made generous donations to projects such as Ken Nedimeyer’s Coral Restoration Foundation, putting reef tanks in surrounding community hospitals, and youth education endeavors.
Once Atlanta Reef Club board members watched the interview Mark Callahan conducted with Kate Rawlinson, their next philanthropic mission was clear. And a $10,400 check was soon on its way to fund Kate’s and Cat’s research efforts.
Much has been written in the past weeks regarding a NOAA report and the ensuing anxiety over corals that might be given new threatened status, which could negatively impact the hobby. While much of that is shrouded in speculative panic, the fact remains that we CAN take measures to protect and safeguard what we already have in our tanks. If not so much as another coral is allowed to be imported to the United States, isn’t it that much more important to preserve what we already have Stateside? It’s the hopes of the Atlanta Reef Club that its $10,000+ donation to the AEFW project will help do just that.
Note from Kate Rawlinson
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