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Lula_Mae

Lula Mae's full circle 5.5--new fishie!

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Lula_Mae   

FTS 9/19/17

IMG_20170920_011511888

 

FTS 8/10/17

IMG_20170810_213736260

 

FTS 7/19/17

IMG_20170719_213158797

 

FTS 6/23/17

ATT00001(3)

 

FTS 5/23/17

IMG_20170523_161024976

 

Original post (with edits to stock list):

One of my earliest tanks and my first "big" tank after I got into saltwater was a little 5.5 gallon standard tank.  I had an 18" 36 watt Nova Extreme T5 fixture over it, an AquaClear and a powerhead.  Some live rock with amazing hitchhikers on it and, eventually, some beautiful corals, mostly from Coral Morphologic--a few gorgeous rics, D. carlgreni (which migrated over its rock and left four babies behind), and a bright green St. Thomas mushroom.  The tank was eventually broken down for a 1,200 mile move and never set back up.  A year or two later, I moved back to NC and set up another 5.5 with the same fixture and a filter and/or powerhead but the Hydor Theo kept everything in the mid-80's so it was all stressed and I was so busy the tank was severely neglected so what little I had in there eventually died.  It was my first attempt with macros, though, and I found them very enjoyable.  Sometime later I broke down that tank that had just been running with lights off and had, by this time, started a little 1-gallon bowfront tank with Florida live rock that had tons of hitchhikers.  That morphed into another tank or two over the course of a couple inter-state moves, and eventually became the little 2.3 gallon that started me posting here on the forum.  The course of that tank's life can be followed in this thread.

 

Now, I'm back in North Carolina again and it seems only fitting that I should once again have a 5.5.  I've mentioned before that it's one of my favorite tank sizes--small enough to be portable and not take up much room in tight quarters, but big enough to really be able to do something with.  I've been contemplating this for a while but held off making a decision until after the move and now that I've seen I have just enough room for it, I decided it was time.  It feels a bit like coming full-circle--to once again be in my home state after years away; to once again have a tank the size I've wanted to have again for several years.  Third time in NC, third time with a 5.5, soon to be my third job in my field.  Third time's a charm?

 

I found the tank at a small local pet supply shop a few days ago and set it up.  I'm using the 7w Reef Radiance LED bulb I got for the 2.3 and have ordered a second in case it's needed (I'd actually bought it so I'd have a more even spread, since my ABI 50/50 bulb did not even cover all of my 3ish gallon tank--guess it has narrower optics on it.  Having the light over the tank, the spread is fine but time will tell if it's enough light for everything).  I've got an AquaClear 20 with filter floss and carbon in it, running at a low flow setting, and the air line on the far right for a bit of flow on that side and to break up surface tension.  It's also running at low flow.  Heater is the same 25w from Aqua Forest Aquariums  (@lkoechle please note the absence of the 120v sticker :P).  I've added a bit of large rubble chunks that I've had cycling for a while and--the best part--I've got a few things glued down!  Just with superglue so I may need some epoxy if they don't hold lol.  It is my hope that the original vision from the 2.3 can continue and that this can be a source of joy for me.

 

Equipment list:
5.5 standard aquarium
12w Reef Radiance LED bulb in a cheap lamp from Amazon
25w heater from Aqua Forest Aquariums
airline with a Whisper air pump from their smallest filter
AquaClear 20 with filter floss and carbon

 

Stock list:
Buttercup, the purple and yellow feather duster

Miracle Max, the feather duster who came back from the dead

2 red micro-dusters

20ish dwarf cerith and 10ish zig zag periwinkle snails from Reef Cleaners
1 trochus snail dead :(

1 porcelain anemone crab, Valerie killed by the stupid hitchhiking hermit

Tallulah the baby misbar clown returned to LFS due to being very sick

1 cerith and one pseudo-cerith (hermit crab hitchhiker) both dead

several stomatellas

elusive pom pom crab

 

zoas and palys:
formerly turquoise zoas/palys (now mud brown but maybe coming back to turquoise?)

3 palythoa grandis (2 brownish and one is green)

red people eaters from Zepo.

radioactive dragon eyes from Zepo.

2 pink zoa frags from Zepo.

tiny bright yellow-green zoas from Zepo.

Blondies from Legendary Corals

Punk Princesses from Legendary Corals

Purpleberry Fantasies from Legendary Corals

Bubblegum Pinks from Legendary Corals

 

ricordea:

3 rics from drgibby's 4 gallon tank:

orange rainbow

purple and green

blue
Puerto Rican rainbow ricordea from Legendary Corals

Haitian purplish ricordea from Legendary Corals

 

small pipe organ frag from drgibby's 4 gallon


1 superman mushroom


blastomussas:

purple and turquoise-ish

green with a green-red-purplish rim

purple with green and purple centers

pearlberry blasto from Legendary Corals

 

purple frogspawn from Legendary Corals

 

purple photosynthetic sponge from Legendary Corals

 

macroalgae:

1 branching red macro
a bit of blue scroll that hasn't done well for me
1 red palm macro (also not looking too hot, probably from all the lights out days to ease stressed corals)
small bit of red hitchiking macro on a rubble piece

cactus caulerpa from Reef Cleaners

red gracilaria from Reef Cleaners

shaving brush from Reef Cleaners

C. prolifera from ebay

branching coralline from ebay

chaeto from ebay

codium from ebay

red titan from Weetie

dragon's breath from gulfsurfer101

red portieria from 333Aquatics on ebay

red macro I can't remember the name of from 333Aquatics on ebay

 

1 purple cactus gorgonian from 333Aquatics on ebay

 

GSP collection:
bright green GSP from Weetie

other bright green GSP from Zepo.

blue-greenish GSP frag from drgibby's 4 gallon

 

Future plans:
I will likely add the second bulb and get a clamp-on lamp or gooseneck for both bulbs (matching ones).  Replace the AquaClear 20 with a 30 or so in order to put the heater in there for less clutter in the display.  Probably get a lid for the tank.  If necessary, upgrade the heater for the 50w version.  

 

Stock-wise I'd like more interesting blastos and rics, especially; maybe try D. carlgreni or St. Thomas mushrooms again and maybe add some other interesting mushrooms.  I'd like to try a leather--green sinularia, a cabbage leather, or a finger leather are all on my list of possibilities.  I'd like to try a couple gorgs--probably the angular sea whip like KPA sells (saw an angular whip next to a purple ribbon in an LFS and it looked amazing!).  Maybe try an easy SPS--birdsnest, monti digitata, something encrusting...I dunno.  Open to suggestions.  I like purple.  I'd like to try a porcelain anemone crab as I think they're gorgeous and I've never had one before.  Maybe try xenia again.  I'd like more feather dusters--maybe some of the dwarf ones from LiveAquaria.  Lastly, I'd like to try a fish or two.  Green banded gobies are on the list, or maybe a different goby. Open to other suggestions too.  Maybe a shrimp.  As always, gonna play this by ear and see how it goes.  And avoid pest control lol.

 

FTS 05/12/17:

IMG_20170512_192753367

 

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Lula_Mae   

First update was supposed to go on its own post. :rolleyes: Hoping to use the OP to post future FTS.  Let's try again:

 

First, some updates:
My favorite purple blasto looks bad and one of the palys is still closed up but I'm thinking the leather melting did not help them at all.  Hoping they'll perk up soon.  Have done a few Lugol's dips and some lights out for a couple days before the transfer.  You can see them here, blasto below the big rock and paly on the right.  You can also see the GSP which had attached to the duster's rock so I just glued it down.  Needed something there that wouldn't possibly need a Lugol's dip (hopefully) lol.  The red palm is in the back right looking pretty ragged.

IMG_20170512_192833472

 

Feather duster that was rebuilding his tube had less rebuilt than I realized.  Today I came home and found his crown on the bottom of the tank.  Here I am holding it:

IMG_20170512_185056971-01

 

Purple and yellow duster is happy!  He's a champ.  GSP is still mad from being glued down in this pic.

IMG_20170512_192439390

 

drgibby's pretty blue-greenish GSP starting to peek out, and the rics--the blue and green ones are each growing new mouths!

IMG_20170512_192344734

 

drgibby's wintergreen pipe organ!  It's becoming one of my favorites.

IMG_20170512_192931

 

Slightly blurry FTS (don't mind the cords and powerstrip in the back lol):

IMG_20170512_192753367

 

 

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Looks bigger than 5.5 gallons!

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Lisa166   

Looking good! Hoping that third time's a charm! 

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lkoechle   

yay! No sticker! :lol:

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Lula_Mae   

I softened and smushed up a pellet today and attempted to feed the blasto that's been ailing and I think it ate some!  Fed the other blastos and the acan too, and noticed that the purple and green blastos have at least FOUR tiny baby heads forming!!!  The acans are also regaining a bit of their color so I'm happy about that. :happydance:

 

Violet the hedgehog attempted to hibernate today. <_< After I got her warmed back up she went to sleep again in her cage and when I woke her it made her very angry, after which she took revenge on me...now I have to do laundry lol. :lol:

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Type-H20   
23 hours ago, Lula_Mae said:

One of my earliest tanks and my first "big" tank after I got into saltwater was a little 5.5 gallon standard tank.  I had an 18" 36 watt Nova Extreme T5 fixture over it, an AquaClear and a powerhead.  Some live rock with amazing hitchhikers on it and, eventually, some beautiful corals, mostly from Coral Morphologic--a few gorgeous rics, D. carlgreni (which migrated over its rock and left four babies behind), and a bright green St. Thomas mushroom.  The tank was eventually broken down for a 1,200 mile move and never set back up.  A year or two later, I moved back to NC and set up another 5.5 with the same fixture and a filter and/or powerhead but the Hydor Theo kept everything in the mid-80's so it was all stressed and I was so busy the tank was severely neglected so what little I had in there eventually died.  It was my first attempt with macros, though, and I found them very enjoyable.  Sometime later I broke down that tank that had just been running with lights off and had, by this time, started a little 1-gallon bowfront tank with Florida live rock that had tons of hitchhikers.  That morphed into another tank or two over the course of a couple inter-state moves, and eventually became the little 2.3 gallon that started me posting here on the forum.  The course of that tank's life can be followed in this thread.

 

Now, I'm back in North Carolina again and it seems only fitting that I should once again have a 5.5.  I've mentioned before that it's one of my favorite tank sizes--small enough to be portable and not take up much room in tight quarters, but big enough to really be able to do something with.  I've been contemplating this for a while but held off making a decision until after the move and now that I've seen I have just enough room for it, I decided it was time.  It feels a bit like coming full-circle--to once again be in my home state after years away; to once again have a tank the size I've wanted to have again for several years.  Third time in NC, third time with a 5.5, soon to be my third job in my field.  Third time's a charm?

 

I found the tank at a small local pet supply shop a few days ago and set it up.  I'm using the 7w Reef Radiance LED bulb I got for the 2.3 and have ordered a second in case it's needed (I'd actually bought it so I'd have a more even spread, since my ABI 50/50 bulb did not even cover all of my 3ish gallon tank--guess it has narrower optics on it.  Having the light over the tank, the spread is fine but time will tell if it's enough light for everything).  I've got an AquaClear 20 with filter floss and carbon in it, running at a low flow setting, and the air line on the far right for a bit of flow on that side and to break up surface tension.  It's also running at low flow.  Heater is the same 25w from Aqua Forest Aquariums  (@lkoechle please note the absence of the 120v sticker :P).  I've added a bit of large rubble chunks that I've had cycling for a while and--the best part--I've got a few things glued down!  Just with superglue so I may need some epoxy if they don't hold lol.  It is my hope that the original vision from the 2.3 can continue and that this can be a source of joy for me.

 

Equipment list:
5.5 standard aquarium
7w Reef Radiance LED bulb in a cheap lamp from Walmart
25w heater from Aqua Forest Aquariums
airline with a Whisper air pump from their smallest filter
AquaClear 20 with filter floss and carbon

 

Stock list:
2 feather dusters (one currently semi-tube-less and crown-less)
1 trochus snail
formerly turquoise zoas (now mud brown)
3 rics from drgibby's 4 gallon tank
small pipe organ frag from drgibby's 4 gallon
blue-greenish GSp frag from drgibby's 4 gallon
3 palythoa grandis (2 brownish and one is green)
1 superman mushroom
3 blastomussa frags--one is purple and turquoise-ish, one is green with a green-red-purplish rim, one is purple with green and purple centers but it is not doing so hot right now
1 branching red macro
a few bits of blue scroll that hasn't done well for me
1 red palm macro (also not looking too hot, probably from all the lights out days to ease stressed corals)
small bit of red hitchiking macro on a rubble piece
bright green GSP from Weetie

 

Future plans:
I will likely add the second bulb and get a clamp-on lamp or gooseneck for both bulbs (matching ones).  Replace the AquaClear 20 with a 30 or so in order to put the heater in there for less clutter in the display.  Probably get a lid for the tank.  If necessary, upgrade the heater for the 50w version.  

 

Stock-wise I'd like more interesting blastos and rics, especially; maybe try D. carlgreni or St. Thomas mushrooms again and maybe add some other interesting mushrooms.  I'd like to try a leather--green sinularia, a cabbage leather, or a finger leather are all on my list of possibilities.  I'd like to try a couple gorgs--probably the angular sea whip like KPA sells (saw an angular whip next to a purple ribbon in an LFS and it looked amazing!).  Maybe try an easy SPS--birdsnest, monti digitata, something encrusting...I dunno.  Open to suggestions.  I like purple.  I'd like to try a porcelain anemone crab as I think they're gorgeous and I've never had one before.  Maybe try xenia again.  I'd like more feather dusters--maybe some of the dwarf ones from LiveAquaria.  Lastly, I'd like to try a fish or two.  Green banded gobies are on the list, or maybe a different goby. Open to other suggestions too.  Maybe a shrimp.  As always, gonna play this by ear and see how it goes.  And avoid pest control lol.

 

FTS 05/12/17:

IMG_20170512_192753367

 

Love it.  A 5.5 was my 2nd reef tank (yes, its all about me :lol:).  Looks bigger than it is.  Are you staying bare bottom?

 

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Lula_Mae   
8 minutes ago, Type-H20 said:

Love it.  A 5.5 was my 2nd reef tank (yes, its all about me :lol:).  Looks bigger than it is.  Are you staying bare bottom?

 

:lol:  I am for now.  I just find maintenance easier without sand and don't mind the look of bare bottom.  Only time I really want sand is when I'm looking at macros that do better rooted in it lol.  I had super-fine sand in the last tank and I think it was a contributing factor in the tank crash (rics don't like being sandy...).

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Lula_Mae   

Meant to post these earlier but I got distracted...  :unsure:

 

Look who decided to open after at least a week closed!  Not all the way, not yet, and he did close back up for part of the afternoon but Mr. Grumpy Paly managed to open a fair bit today and even took a few bits of mysis tonight when I fed everybody. :happydance: Also, the blasto that I was afraid of losing (he's on the left in this pic) is fluffing up beautifully.  He took a bit of pellet again yesterday and took a few bits of mysis himself tonight!  AND the tiny baby heads that were there when I got it are starting to fluff out again too!  YAYYYY!!! omgomgomg Acans are fluffing out too!

IMG_20170516_144741603

 

My other blastos are looking so beautiful! :wub:  Fat and fluffy!

IMG_20170516_144749895

 

Gratuitous shot of the little pipe organ frag which loves its spot up top and is so pretty!

IMG_20170516_144845

 

I'm not sure how the feather duster is doing who dropped his crown...Not holding out a lot of hope for him, sadly.  But the rest of the tank is looking quite nice and I'm happy about that! :)

 

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5 hours ago, Lula_Mae said:

Meant to post these earlier but I got distracted...  :unsure:

 

Look who decided to open after at least a week closed!  Not all the way, not yet, and he did close back up for part of the afternoon but Mr. Grumpy Paly managed to open a fair bit today and even took a few bits of mysis tonight when I fed everybody. :happydance: Also, the blasto that I was afraid of losing (he's on the left in this pic) is fluffing up beautifully.  He took a bit of pellet again yesterday and took a few bits of mysis himself tonight!  AND the tiny baby heads that were there when I got it are starting to fluff out again too!  YAYYYY!!! omgomgomg Acans are fluffing out too!

IMG_20170516_144741603

 

My other blastos are looking so beautiful! :wub:  Fat and fluffy!

IMG_20170516_144749895

 

Gratuitous shot of the little pipe organ frag which loves its spot up top and is so pretty!

IMG_20170516_144845

 

I'm not sure how the feather duster is doing who dropped his crown...Not holding out a lot of hope for him, sadly.  But the rest of the tank is looking quite nice and I'm happy about that! :)

 

 

:happydance::happydance::happydance:

SO happy to see things improving for you!!!!

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I hope your naked feather duster starts doing better!! 

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Pjanssen   

Nice to see you with a tank. Looks great! Amazing how much you can put in such a small tank, it looks so much bigger. BTW, i love the little green gobies.

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Very cool! 

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Lula_Mae   
3 hours ago, Weetabix7 said:

 

:happydance::happydance::happydance:

SO happy to see things improving for you!!!!

Thanks Weetie, me too!

 

1 hour ago, kimberbee said:

I hope your naked feather duster starts doing better!! 

Me too, he was so beautiful and fluffy and it took some sweet talking to convince hubby to let me buy him lol.

 

1 hour ago, Pjanssen said:

Nice to see you with a tank. Looks great! Amazing how much you can put in such a small tank, it looks so much bigger. BTW, i love the little green gobies.

Thanks!  It is, isn't it?  I have wanted GBG's ever since I saw them in c est ma's tank waaaaaaaaaaaay back when.  They're so cute!

 

58 minutes ago, stellablue said:

Very cool! 

Thanks Stella!  Does Franklin approve? :lol:

 

AND today I FINALLY talked to someone in HR and officially accepted the job! omgomgomg  :happydance:  :haha:  :bling:  B)  :D

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Just now, Lula_Mae said:

Thanks Weetie, me too!

 

Me too, he was so beautiful and fluffy and it took some sweet talking to convince hubby to let me buy him lol.

 

Thanks!  It is, isn't it?  I have wanted GBG's ever since I saw them in c est ma's tank waaaaaaaaaaaay back when.  They're so cute!

 

Thanks Stella!  Does Franklin approve? :lol:

 

AND today I FINALLY talked to someone in HR and officially accepted the job! omgomgomg  :happydance:  :haha:  :bling:  B)  :D

Franklin approves!! And congrats!!

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Lula_Mae   
1 minute ago, stellablue said:

Franklin approves!! And congrats!!

Yay thanks Franklin! :lol:  And thanks!  This job is pretty much a dream job so I'm pretty stoked. :wub:

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cvest100   

Congrats!  Tank is looking great!

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Lula_Mae   
6 minutes ago, cvest100 said:

Congrats!  Tank is looking great!

Thanks!  I am happy about it!

Also, new stuffs are at the post office so I will have them this afternoon!  omgomgomg

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Lula_Mae   

Also, while distracted about the job, I forgot to say that my husband texted me to let me know my sweet betta boy Bojangles passed during the night. :tears:  He was two and a half years old, I got him at Walmart shortly after I'd moved to that area.  He would swim up and dance and wiggle whenever you came by his tank to say hello (and beg for food lol).  The last few months, his tank was near the sink and any time you turned the water on, out he came from his jungle of plants!  He loved attention and loved his pellets.  Sweet boy!

 

RIP Bojangles.  I'll miss you!

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cvest100   
32 minutes ago, Lula_Mae said:

Thanks!  I am happy about it!

Also, new stuffs are at the post office so I will have them this afternoon!  omgomgomg

New stuffs are always fun!!!:naughtydance:

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31 minutes ago, Lula_Mae said:

Also, while distracted about the job, I forgot to say that my husband texted me to let me know my sweet betta boy Bojangles passed during the night. :tears:  He was two and a half years old, I got him at Walmart shortly after I'd moved to that area.  He would swim up and dance and wiggle whenever you came by his tank to say hello (and beg for food lol).  The last few months, his tank was near the sink and any time you turned the water on, out he came from his jungle of plants!  He loved attention and loved his pellets.  Sweet boy!

 

RIP Bojangles.  I'll miss you!

 

:tears:

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Congratulations on the job and it's great to see those fluffy corals!  

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Lula_Mae   
16 minutes ago, cvest100 said:

New stuffs are always fun!!!:naughtydance:

:lol: Yes, yes they are.

 

9 minutes ago, Weetabix7 said:

 

:tears:

Yes :tears:

 

4 minutes ago, fishfreak0114 said:

Congratulations on the job and it's great to see those fluffy corals!  

Thanks, I am glad to see it!  Some of them had me sweating there for a bit lol.

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Pjanssen   

Sorry about your beta

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