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Roland-Berlin

another 0.7 pico

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Roland-Berlin

Last full view: 25.03.2016

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Hello everyone,

before starting to read, please note, that I am not a native speaker, and that my English is on a very modest level. But I think, you will understand, or at least read between the lines, what I am talking/writing about.

 

My name is Roland, i live in Germany and this will be the story of my first pico reef, which I started in November 2014. It all began during a holiday trip to Australia, where I picked up some stones, sand and algea for a nano reef. The stones and sand hail from the south coast of Australia, more precisely from the beaches around the Melbourne area.

 

Back in Germany, after a 22h flight, the algea, wich was packed in a little plastic box with a low lewel of water in it, seemed to overcome the journey without any visible harm.

 

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The "tank" for my new reef is a square vase with a capacity of three liters (about 0.7 gallon). The technical equiment is kept very modest: a small pump, a heating element and a LED light will hopefully keep the reef alive. The pump and the heating element is hidden behind a plastic wall (a back of an old CD), so that the tank is divided into two small chambers.

 

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andrewkw

You are lucky that you were not fined or worse. Live rock is covered under cites plus whatever else you brought back especially coming from Australia.

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Roland-Berlin

On the airport, my handluggage was checked very extensive. I think it was noticeable because of the liquid. And of course I had to explain the export of algea. After all, they let me through. Perhaps I got around trouble because of naivety and density?

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Roland-Berlin

Day number one. Three residents moved into the tank: one clam (tridacna maxima), one snail (tectus fenestratus) and an anemone (actina equina). And I put red algea and some peaces of caulerpa in the back chamber. After a period of adaption, tridacna opens at least a little bit, and the snail is grazing on the stones and algea. So far, so good.

 

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dingusplease

Hi there, it looks like you have a nice little tank starting! But this tank is way too young to safely house that clam.

 

Tiny tanks can be much less stable, and from what I can tell the tank is very young. Clams need intense lighting, stable parameters, and generally have a high mortality rate in smaller tanks.

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Cameron6796

^not trying to shoot you down but I agree with the above a clam isn't really a good idea on day one or ever in a tank smaller then three gallons.

 

Even then I would not do it do to low success rates in such a small tank.I'm

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Roland-Berlin

Thank you for your replies.

Summarizing, there is a lot of warriness, whether such an ambitious animal like a clam will survive in such a small living space. Since I am not an expert in pico reefing, I have an emergency plan, if things get out of control.

In terms of stable water parameters, I am aware that the theory of living stones, sand bed and millions of water stabilising microbes will not work in a pico, regardless of whether it is a 0.somewhat or a 10 gallon one (or you install lots of equipment, so it would look like an intensive care unit at the end of the day). So in my tank I forwent a running-in-period. My answere to problems of accumulating contaminants is water change. I am not sure whether 100% wc every week will be sufficient, so I will take the clam as a messenger of water quality, since it reacts very sensitive of degradation.

Besides that, I am not interested in measurement of any water paramters, exept density and temperature.

During the last days, I bought some new dwellers:

Dicosoma (one polyp), Xenia umbellata, Blastomussa and one frag of Acropora.

Time for some new pics showing the pico 20 min after a wc: two entire views from the front face and the other one showing the back chamber:

 

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brandon429

Hey that looks nice! Yes 100% weekly not bi weekly will work

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kylhcky

Thank you for your replies.

Summarizing, there is a lot of warriness, whether such an ambitious animal like a clam will survive in such a small living space. Since I am not an expert in pico reefing, I have an emergency plan, if things get out of control.

In terms of stable water parameters, I am aware that the theory of living stones, sand bed and millions of water stabilising microbes will not work in a pico, regardless of whether it is a 0.somewhat or a 10 gallon one (or you install lots of equipment, so it would look like an intensive care unit at the end of the day). So in my tank I forwent a running-in-period. My answere to problems of accumulating contaminants is water change. I am not sure whether 100% wc every week will be sufficient, so I will take the clam as a messenger of water quality, since it reacts very sensitive of degradation.

Besides that, I am not interested in measurement of any water paramters, exept density and temperature.

During the last days, I bought some new dwellers:

Dicosoma (one polyp), Xenia umbellata, Blastomussa and one frag of Acropora.

Time for some new pics showing the pico 20 min after a wc: two entire views from the front face and the other one showing the back chamber:

 

 

try not to rely on the clam as a que for water quality, they don't die slowly. one day they will be 100% healthy, the next day you can wake up to an bare shell and a full clean up crew. on a tank this small as well, that kind of decaying bioload in such a short time can be extremely detrimental to this small volume of water.

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Cameron6796

this above ^ is exactly what I was going to say they are hardy until u piss them off, then they can become a blob of mush in hours... also 100% water changes my not be good as if any air gets in the clam it will likely have trouble getting it out and potentially die.

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Roland-Berlin

Hallo,

up to that point, things are going fine, but these are only the first few days of running that puddle. Is there really no chance to keep it alive over a longer period of time? In the background I have running a bigger tank, so I guess it would be an insurance at least when things impair over a longer period of time. Indeed, for a sudden collaps this will not be enough.

Brandon: I read about your method of w-changes in a thread called "water changes... brainstrom challenge", where you describe your way of wces by putting the hole tank into a sink, and let the reef swamp with new water. I hope, that these swamping waterchanges with about 5l in my 3l tank will help the reef to survive (in this context special thank first of all for your trend setting work over years) .

 

What I have learned during the past few days is, how much work this three liters make. WC once a week seems not enough, since after about 5 days little bubbles aggregate on the water surface, showing that there is too much protein in the water, although the dwellers do not show any signs of exhaustion or degradation. Perhaps protein rise is partly because of the snail, which excretions pollute the water. To make things easier, the snail had to leave. And since I am a great fan of feeding all sea dwellers, no matter they are zooxanthellae or not, I have at least to change water one day after feeding the corals and the clam, which happens currently twice a week.

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Roland-Berlin

Hey that looks nice! Yes 100% weekly not bi weekly will work

 

I read about your method of w-changes in the thread "water changes...brainstorm challenge", where you describe your way of conductin w.changes by putting the tank into the sink and let the reef swamp with new water. I hope, that these swamping w.changes with 5l into my 3l tank will help the reef to survive (and above all, thanks for your trend setting work over the last years !)

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Roland-Berlin

this above ^ is exactly what I was going to say they are hardy until u piss them off, then they can become a blob of mush in hours... also 100% water changes my not be good as if any air gets in the clam it will likely have trouble getting it out and potentially die.

 

Air in the clam? In my tank there are always tiny bubbles in the water, because the pump swirl up the water surface. Up to that point, my clam showes no harm. It would surprise me, when an animal, frequently living in its natural habitat tight under the water surface, would not be able to cope with heavy sea and hence with bubbles/air in the water. And dont they even beach sometimes, when they decided to live in the tidal range?

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k4ndyk1ng

What is the dimensions of the tank?

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Roland-Berlin

What is the dimensions of the tank?

It contents 3 l. That should be about 0.7 gallon (approximate).

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brandon429

hi Roland thanks for posting up the care ideas for your small tank and great pics

 

I too have changed water more than once per week when trying to feed well and fatten up the corals

 

its neat you are willing to do the small work of the water changes most want to put them off because things work well seemingly without them, but this is preemptive work for what we know soon comes (algae)

 

when you see those first green sprigs, during one of your tank drains just kill it lol

 

b

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Roland-Berlin

after about 1 week or so, I changed the hole scape. It put out, that the two chamber construction and the peaces of small rocks causes too much work when doing the water changes. Sand covers everything, the platic wall fainted everytime, and the rocks shifted. Things had to become more easy, and I think it is much less work to change the reef structure, while everything is not adnate jet. I fixed all the small rocks together on one bigger "slap", so that it can be taken out as a whole, sluiced and put back in the purified tank. Indeed, I think the tank looked nicer before, but I hope, that after the stones are overgrown, it will be good looking again.

 

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Roland-Berlin

hi Roland thanks for posting up the care ideas for your small tank and great pics

 

I too have changed water more than once per week when trying to feed well and fatten up the corals

 

its neat you are willing to do the small work of the water changes most want to put them off because things work well seemingly without them, but this is preemptive work for what we know soon comes (algae)

 

when you see those first green sprigs, during one of your tank drains just kill it lol

 

b

Yes it is a matter of time, when the algea attack will begin. I hope that wc and overgrowing corals will take at least some haunt of the algea, but from experience, they will find a niche to start their invasion. Before then I have to wait and be awake.

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k4ndyk1ng

What are the dimensions like length, width and height of the tank?

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Roland-Berlin

 

What are the dimensions like length, width and height of the tank?

 

it is a cube with a side length of 25 cm (10 inch) /length, width, height. It tapers a littlebit to the bottom, but this is almost unnoticeable.

 

 

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k4ndyk1ng

Cool, it looks awesome :)

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Roland-Berlin

Just some new pics. I made the photos after a waterchange, so there are a lot of bubbles in the water. And when you take a closer look, you can see that the algea invasion has started. Today, I bought a sps-frag. I guess, it is stylophora pistillata.

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brandon429

what is the direct action chosen for the algae, this is the part im most interested in all build threads lol

 

100% of all algae loss tanks on the internet from half to 380 gallon sps reefs had two things in common: a predicted start of algae usually having nothing to do with high nutrients and an ineffective action plan. not one of them deviated from this course, and we saved some of them retroactively.

 

 

Andrewk's reef here is small and weathered the first algae test, I believe his main angle was phosphate management. His tank is the smallest tank using gfo I know of

 

I could not use that in my tank, no hang on back filter fits mine.

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Roland-Berlin

what is the direct action chosen for the algae, this is the part im most interested in all build threads lol

 

100% of all algae loss tanks on the internet from half to 380 gallon sps reefs had two things in common: a predicted start of algae usually having nothing to do with high nutrients and an ineffective action plan. not one of them deviated from this course, and we saved some of them retroactively.

 

 

Andrewk's reef here is small and weathered the first algae test, I believe his main angle was phosphate management. His tank is the smallest tank using gfo I know of

 

I could not use that in my tank, no hang on back filter fits mine.

Since I will not measure any water parameters besides temperature and salinity, I have onyl one tool of trade against algea: waterchange. But as you said, algea seems nothing (or at least little) to do with nutrients. I hope, that mechanic removel of the algea on an interim basis will give the corals some time to overgrow the stones, so that the habitat of algea will shrink. And there is another helping hand: time. In my experience, the problem of algea growing dissolve after a not defined time quite alone. So it will be a mixture of removal, w.changes and patience that I will field against algea.

If things run out of control I will perhaps think of using gfo. But to that moment, the frustration is not big enough to upgrade the system.

Lets wait and see how long this will persist.

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