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Ethan's 12g Vagabond Tank


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#1
ScubaEthan

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7-29-12
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7-9-12
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5-23-12
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Blasted LEDs and camera phone.
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5-3-12
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3-26-12
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3-2-12
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2-12-12
Cluttered, I know.
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2-7-12
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1-6-12
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11-9-11
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Hello everyone, I am setting my tank back up after a couple year hiatus. :D
But I am still a complete noob. I put water in the tank back in October but have been taking it real slow.
Here's some photos. Sorry for the bad cellphone quality. I used to be a photographer until ALL my equipment was stolen out of my car :angry: But I'd rather spend my money on my tank than a new camera ;)

Updated 3-27-12
Equipment:
  • 12g Aquapod
  • 1 Ecoxotic Panorama Pro 50/50 LED strip
  • 1 Ecoxotic Panorama Pro blue/magenta LED strip
  • Maxi-Jet 900 Pro return
  • Koralia Nano 240
  • 20lb live sand
  • ~12lb live rock
  • cheap heater, need a better one.
  • JBJ ATO- not set up yet
  • DIY egg crate media baskets with polishing pad, chemi-pure elite, and purigen

Maintenance:
  • scrub acrylic
  • top off manually
  • 2 gallon weekly water change

Feeding:
  • feed pellets/flakes every day to every other day and soak in garlic sometimes
  • feed frozen mysis once a week
  • feed marine snow once a week
  • Add 1ml of Brightwell Aquatics CoralAmino once a week (started 5-14-12)

Fish:
  • Bozo the small orange ocellaris clown
  • Bailey the larger black misbar ocellaris clown lost to filter :(
  • Yoda the green clown goby lost to filter a few days after adding it :( made major mods to project fish
  • Bailey II

Inverts:
  • 10 8 cerith snails (hermits murdered 2)
  • 10 7 nassarius snails (hermits murdered 1) Actually, I think they're all dead now. I never see any.
  • 7 nerite snails
  • 2 astrea snails
  • 4 3 dwarf blue legged hermits
  • 1 large scarlet legged hermit
  • 1 porcelain crab (it NEVER comes out)
  • 1 hitch hiker crab (yet to be IDed or caught, but it plays nice)
  • 1 peppermint shrimp named Pierre MIA
  • Several asterina stars
  • At least 10 mini brittle stars
  • All the other hitchhikers: feather Dusters, vermitids (eaten by peppermint shrimp), sponges, bristle worms, etc.

Coral:
  • Soft Coral:
    • Green Star Polyps
    • Mushrooms: 1 red, 1 brown spotted, 2 blue/purple, 2 teal with brown spots, 1 red with purple spots, 3 shiny orange
    • Ricordea: 2 orange (turned yellow), 1 rainbow (looks more blue)
    • Ricordae Yuma: over 30
    • Zoas: orange bam bams, whammin' watermelons, brown with teal centers
    • Palys: brown; green striped pinwheels
    • Pom Pom Xenia
    • Blue cloves
    • Pink clove polyps
    • Cabbage leather
  • SPS:
    • Green montipora cap.
    • Red montipora cap.
    • Unknown tiny branch
    • Pavona
    • Green birdsnest
  • LPS:
    • Blastomusa Merletti


I tore out all the hood guts and put in a Panorama Pro LED strip with white/blue. I'm working on keeping the parameters stable and changing two gallons of water once a week. I'm getting an ATO tomorrow. I plan to get a maxi-jet 900 and maybe a koralia nano 240. I want to buy or build a media basket for a chamber to use filter floss/pad, chaeto, and chemipure elite. Any other mod/upgrade suggestions?

Bozo (smaller orange) and Bailey (bigger and darker) were named by my girlfriend. I got them on January 8th from a local breeder and they were 7 months. They scared me a couple times with their antics. Like the time I thought Bozo was having a seizure. Thankfully they were just getting lovey dovey.
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A couple weeks later Bailey is getting darker
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Another week later, she's almost completely black
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First corals added in January 2012
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Edited by ScubaEthan, 29 July 2012 - 12:57 PM.

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#2
gena

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Looks great!!!! Bailey sure did color up fast!!!! Will the other stay orange? That's the combination I really wanted. One b/w and one orange. It didn't work out for me though.

Love the ricordeas! I have a major weakness for them :)

You might want to do more than a gallon a week with the water change. I would do at least a 20% change to keep nutrients more controlled. Trust me, I'm an expert on nutrients :lol:

Don't forget a FTS when you get a chance :) I want to see the rockscape!


As far as the maxi 900 or nano. Are you talking switching out the stock pump for the 900 or getting the new maxi-jet pro 900? The pros kinda look like koralias now.

#3
ScubaEthan

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She did! The breeder calls her color mocha but apparently no one knows how dark they'll get in adulthood. Most, when born "mocha," turn jet black while some stay mocha colored. Or so I think. I'm learning lots about clownfish. I believe the other will stay orange. Most in their batch (what do you call a bunch of baby clowns??) Were fully orange.

Why did the black/white and orange pair not work for you? They seem to be doing dominate/submissive behaviors a lot. I assume that means they are pairing up well. Nothing too dominantly aggressive yet.

I have a major weakness to ricordeas too.

Do you think 2 gallons once a week is good or should I do them multiple times a week? Is it better to do it as often as I can or stick to a schedule?

Thanks!

Edited by ScubaEthan, 24 January 2012 - 11:33 AM.

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#4
ScubaEthan

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Oh and I plan to get the maxi-jet 900 to replace the stock internal pump and use that with my ATO I'm getting tonight. Plus a Koralia nano for more intermittent flow. I'm trying to follow what I've seen others do. Does that sound right?

I saw my porcelain crab for the first time in a couple weeks last night. So glad it's still alive! Too skiddish for a photo though.

Full tank shot pre-livestock. Not a great photo but I think I have some nice ledges for coral and kind of a cove in the middle. I spent hours to get this cause I have some large pieces. Unfortunately, these were some of the smallest my LFS had. Lots of life came with them though. I think it's pretty good quality.

I've since taken out the magfloat with algae pad. I need to get a piece of felt or something to put between the magfloat as its scratching the acrylic even though it was made for acrylic.

fts.jpg
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#5
cuboy

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You will only need to change about 1.2 gallon of water a week. ~10% water change.

Also, to bad it didnt stay it's original color.

The orange with black fins looked awesome

#6
Deputy_Pooh

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mods sound good. the basket really helps in my opinion.. I'm no pro but u can look at my BC14 for reference. They are similar tanks and i have no issues so far....

#7
ScubaEthan

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Thanks for the confirmation. I've been reading a lot but it's different when someone says, "Yes, those mods sound good."

Yeah the mocha color was sweet. Oh well. They're still cool and diverse lol
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#8
hawkgonereefin

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Tank and Clowns are looking great! And how can you not love ricordeas......just saying :D

#9
wankreas

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Yay another NC12! <3
I'm enjoying reading about your tank! I upgraded the lighting in mine using the Ecoxotic panorama modules last year and am loving them. I have one blue/white, one solid actinic and one magenta stunner strip.
I have been pretty lazy when it comes to changing out the last of the stock items- I have kept the sponges (I rinse them out twice a week) and run some chemipure elite in the second chamber. I upgraded the stock pump and have a hydor rotating deflector for some additional water movement. I was going to add a small koralia but I am worried that it will be too large. It might work well for you since your rockwork is a little more open than mine :)

#10
gena

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Why did the black/white and orange pair not work for you?

Do you think 2 gallons once a week is good or should I do them multiple times a week? Is it better to do it as often as I can or stick to a schedule?

Thanks!

I waited too long to add the orange clown. My b/w wanted no part of a new clown "friend" in the tank. He tried to kill it. After that it was a rescue mission on my part. I was so bummed too, because the little orange guy was the cutest clown I'd ever seen :)

I think 2 gallons would be fine. I'm a little over board, but I'm trying to get rid of algae, so I'm doing 2.5 gallons twice a week. I think typical is 10-25% weekly. I tend to lean toward the higher percentage in my changes.

Sticking to a schedule is best. You don't want to do too many changes as that can stress the inhabitants. If you aren't having nutrient issues, you're fine with once a week.

FTS looks awesome! Love the rockscape a lot!!!!!

#11
ScubaEthan

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Tank and Clowns are looking great! And how can you not love ricordeas......just saying :D


Thanks! Exxxactly. They are the best coral porn.

Yay another NC12! <3
I'm enjoying reading about your tank! I upgraded the lighting in mine using the Ecoxotic panorama modules last year and am loving them. I have one blue/white, one solid actinic and one magenta stunner strip.
I have been pretty lazy when it comes to changing out the last of the stock items- I have kept the sponges (I rinse them out twice a week) and run some chemipure elite in the second chamber. I upgraded the stock pump and have a hydor rotating deflector for some additional water movement. I was going to add a small koralia but I am worried that it will be too large. It might work well for you since your rockwork is a little more open than mine :)


Thanks! 12 is the best. I just have one blue/white model but want to add a blue for dawn/dusk... and to not freak the fish out. Do you have 3 or 4 chambers in the back? I have 4 but all the photos I see of other all-in-one cubes only have 3 so I'm confused. I'm also worried the second powerhead will be too much but other people do it... so it must be fine.

FTS looks awesome! Love the rockscape a lot!!!!!


Thanks! Like they say, everyone hates their own, right? :P
Sucks about your clowns! What a bully :angry:
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#12
ScubaEthan

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Hello rics and Pierre.
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Orange bam bam zoas. See how that one is brown? It used to be super bright orange like it's neighbor. Any ideas?
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I finally got some photos of the elusive hitch hiker crab!!! :o
ID anyone? Should I remove it?
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#13
ScubaEthan

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Here's the orange ric when I first got it a couple weeks ago. I noticed that it is no longer as bright orange either. Greens, reds, and blues seem vibrant but not oranges. Hmmmmmm

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#14
mike c

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This may help with the crab ID. You might be able to pick it out of all the pics, since I know stuff in our tanks always looks way different in person.

http://www.chucksadd...hitchcrabs.html

#15
ScubaEthan

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Thanks for the link. It's still so hard to tell though. One thing that throws me off is the arm you see in the photo is skinny while the other arm is ginormous and thick. I done some searches but can't figure out if that is a thing with certain species, a male/female thing, or what.

I got new toys! A huge thing of eggcrate to make a filter media basket and frag rack. Light for future chaeto in the back and a use JBJ ATO from a local reefer. Now I just gotta figure out how to use the darn thing. I found the manual online. Can't be that hard, right?

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#16
gena

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Pretty rics!!!!!

That crab is freaky looking :lol: Does he just have one long arm or are both like that?

#17
ScubaEthan

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Pretty rics!!!!!

That crab is freaky looking :lol: Does he just have one long arm or are both like that?



No, the other arm is three times that size. It is cool looking. I just don't know what to do with it! Maybe he won't cause any problems long enough until I set up the bigger tank and sump I have in storage.... Then he can live in the sump ;)
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#18
ssgtgonzo

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She did! The breeder calls her color mocha but apparently no one knows how dark they'll get in adulthood. Most, when born "mocha," turn jet black while some stay mocha colored. Or so I think. I'm learning lots about clownfish. I believe the other will stay orange. Most in their batch (what do you call a bunch of baby clowns??) Were fully orange.

Why did the black/white and orange pair not work for you? They seem to be doing dominate/submissive behaviors a lot. I assume that means they are pairing up well. Nothing too dominantly aggressive yet.

I have a major weakness to ricordeas too.

Do you think 2 gallons once a week is good or should I do them multiple times a week? Is it better to do it as often as I can or stick to a schedule?

Thanks!



2 gallons a week is good, but if you could do 1 gallon every other day, that would be even better. That way you are changing more than 10% constantly, keeping the good nutrients in your tank at a stable level. When you extend it out, the balance of nutrients swing up and down which can cause stress.

That's one of the reasons I started building nanos, easier to change 1 gallon every other day than 20 gallons once a week in my 125!

#19
ssgtgonzo

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Orange bam bam zoas. See how that one is brown? It used to be super bright orange like it's neighbor. Any ideas?
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Wouldn't worry about it, sometimes they jettison zooanthellae which makes them bleached, and sometimes the algae reproduces too quickly which turns them brown. They will find a good balance and the color will return, at least mine did! I have some AOGs that looked half pink and half brown (in the same polyp) for a while until the balance was found and they all turned metallic pink again.

#20
ScubaEthan

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Wouldn't worry about it, sometimes they jettison zooanthellae which makes them bleached, and sometimes the algae reproduces too quickly which turns them brown. They will find a good balance and the color will return, at least mine did! I have some AOGs that looked half pink and half brown (in the same polyp) for a while until the balance was found and they all turned metallic pink again.



Cool. Good to know.

Thanks for the advice on water changing. How long can I keep mixed saltwater in the bucket? Can I make new saltwater once a week and use it throughout the week? I'm still perfecting my saltwater mixing. I made some Tuesday to change the water last night but the salinity was too low. I added more so hopefully it will be good tonight.
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#21
ScubaEthan

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Yay for local reefers tearing down their tanks and giving away the leftovers for free! omgomgomg

I got some monti, gsp, pom pom xenia, something unknown, and blue cloves. I'm wondering if I even want the blue cloves. I know they spread fast. I want the completely covered look but do I want them to take over before other corals grow? Does anyone have experience with it?

As soon as some of the pieces went in, Pierre went to work. He even jumped on my hand and was swimming at the surface to steal mysis from the clowns :o
I just put stuff on the bottom to acclimate to the lights then I'll move it to the proper place.
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The unknown. Looks like xenia hands inside tubes. ID please?
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Oldie but goodie. I think the pinstriped palys are my favs so far. The are metallic green in person.
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#22
gena

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Your "xenia" looks just like my cloves when they are closed up. I'm pretty certain they are a clove polyp. Nice free stuff. That monti is pretty big too! Looks like a green one :)

#23
ScubaEthan

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Your "xenia" looks just like my cloves when they are closed up. I'm pretty certain they are a clove polyp. Nice free stuff. That monti is pretty big too! Looks like a green one :)


Cloves... xenia... what's the difference? They are all pretty similar, right?

This is my first sps (yay!) but I know I've committed a reefing sin by getting livestock without knowing how to take care of them. But the guy just threw all that stuff in the bag! I only went for a piece of LR rubble with blue cloves on it :lol:

So by green, do you mean the small polyps on it will be green when they open? I'm out of town for the weekend (it's my birthday! :wizard: ). I can't wait to see then on Monday!
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#24
ScubaEthan

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I have some marine snow and plan to put half a capfull in the tank once a week. Sound like a good idea?

Does SPS get much from the marine snow or are they mostly photosynthetic?

Should I get a bottle of trace elements + calcium or will 2g water changes every week be enough to keep those trace elements up?

Thanks for all the advice reefer friends :D
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#25
gena

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I have some marine snow and plan to put half a capfull in the tank once a week. Sound like a good idea?

Does SPS get much from the marine snow or are they mostly photosynthetic?

Should I get a bottle of trace elements + calcium or will 2g water changes every week be enough to keep those trace elements up?

Thanks for all the advice reefer friends :D

Xenia and cloves are very similar but the xenia will pulse. Both are moody corals :lol:

See the directions on the marine snow and do about half what they suggest. Slowly build up. I've never used that product so not sure on how it performs. I do know that SPS will benefit from dosing things like that, in addition to good lighting.

A lot of people have luck with just doing weekly water changes with their sps tanks. Do you have test kits for Ca, mg, etc? You can see how much your corals utilize to determine if you will need to dose.