coral coral

Carlin Aquarium Systems is pleased to partner with Center in the Square to announce — a non-profit, on-line coral sales organization that benefits the educational outreach of

Center in the Square in downtown Roanoke.

Starting in late October, 2014 Carlin Aquarium systems began offering coral frags for sale at  100-percent of the proceeds from the sale of these corals is returned to Center in the Square to help offset the costs of offering its Ocean in the Mountains exhibit, which is open to the public at no charge.

Open brain coral
Open brain coral

If you would like to purchase a coral from Mountain, CLICK HERE and you will be directed to the secure website. to make your purchase.  these corals are raised in the reef system at Center in the Square and the prices are very reasonable.  Hobbyists will find a wide selection of rare zoanthids, ultra acans, open brain and many other corals selections.

The Back Story

Years ago people who visited the atrium area of Center in the Square in downtown Roanoke saw a lone security guard sitting under the stairs.  These days, since Center’s $27-million renovation, visitors are greeted by an atrium teeming with aquatic life.  There is an 8,000-gallon living reef aquarium, a 400 gallon “tidal” tank that offers an up-close look at reef creatures with niche habits, two huge jellyfish cylinders, an endangered species exhibit and a look at the freshwater turtles of Virginia.

Though the aquariums were paid for as part of the fund-raising for the renovation, their on-going maintenance as well as oversight for the health and welfare of the hundreds of fish and invertibrates requires attention 365 days a year.  That can be a challenge when the aqurium exhibits, now known collectively as the Ocean in the Mountains, are offered to the public at no charge.

We at Carlin Aquarium Systems, caretakers of the Ocean in the Mountains, brainstormed with Center staff to help find a dedicate revenue stream to help withthe ever-present need for fundraising.  That’s when was born.

Coral grow out system at
Coral grow out system at

Aquarium keepers know that nothing is better for growing and maintaining corals than stable water paremeters.  And the larger the aquarium, the more stable it is.  It made sense then,

to see of we could tap into the 8,000 gallon system and see if we could grow frags.

Using aquariums in the life support center donated by United Pet Group, and plumbed into the living reef, CAS began fragging colonies of acans, zoanthids, and favia as well as chalices and various species of euphelia (think: frogspawn) during the summer of 2014.

The results have been more than satisfying, with fragged corals “healing” quickly and displaying fantastic growth.  Our team in on the premisis daily and has taken the time to target feed — creating even happier corals.

Our thinking was pretty simple.  The fixed overhead costs are already in place.  All we had to do was role up our sleeves and begin fragging.  Partnering with Center staff and volunteers, we are prepared to begin shipping some of the finest corals in the United States, and to our knowledge the only corals whose sale will benefit a non-profit educational outreach program.

We appreciate you stopping by our web page and we hope you will visit and add a piece to your tank — while helping a great cause.


Another coral at