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FTS/Top-down progression!


March 31, 2018:



March 2018:



February 2018:




January 2018:



October 2017:




July 2017:


*Disclaimer: the photo quality seemed a lot better on my phone now that I'm seeing them on the computer.  Sorry for the bad quality!


For older photos and set-up, please keep reading! :)



Hello and thank you for stopping in! 


I hope to use this as a diary for myself, but I so enjoy seeing other Lagoons that I thought I would document mine for others to see also. :)


Let me preface this by introducing myself!  I'm a Canadian reefer and I share a common addiction with many of you.  I first ventured into saltwater reef tanks in the spring of 2016 with a used (and a then-10-year-old-unit!!) JBJ Nano Cube 12g and I was instantly hooked.  In January, so a little over a year ago now, I had decided on an IM Lagoon 25g as being the perfect next step for me, keeping the 12g running.  Sadly, the old 12g finally kicked the bucket in the spring of 2017.  Really, the hood/fans/lights went on it.  Could have been an easy fix, but it was a better decision at that time to take down the 12g and put my focus into making the 25g the best I could make it!  I kept and used everything in the 12g except my dear clown, which I sold to a great home.  She loved Xenia! 




With that out of the way!  Whew.  I'd like to start by putting up all of the word stuff and then a photo progression.  Let's begin...


It all began on a wintery January 21, 2017:


- Innovative Marine NUVO Aquarium - Fusion Lagoon 25 Gallon (no sump)

- DIY stand (sort of, you'll see)



- Stock pump

- Jebao PP-4 Wavemaker



- Eheim Jager TruTemp Submersible 50W

- Fluval M50 Submersible (50W)



- Aqua Illumination Prime + mounting arm



- AUTOAQUA Smart ATO micro + 2g reservoir



- Purchased by 5g bottles of RO at store, has done me well, but would like to upgrade eventually

- Plan is to go with a 4-stage Spectrapure RO/DI unit.  Just need to pull the trigger already and do it.

- November 2017: I did it! SpectraPure CSPDI 2:1 Manual Flush 90-GPD RO/DI


Rock, Salt & Sand:

- Marco Rock (~15 lbs, want/need more!) Now at least 25lbs.

- CaribSea Arag Alive Fiji Pink Sand (20 lb. bag)

- Red Sea Salt (175g blue bucket) Switched to Fritz RPM, thinking of switching to plain Instant Ocean



- Innovative Marine Mesh Screen Lid Kit (lol we will look into this later...)

- Innovative Marine Custom Caddy Marine Basket (Nano) x2

- Stock filter socks (not in use)

- Filter floss

- Chemi-pure Elite, Chemi-pure Blue, Purigen and regular GAC on standby Since the summer 2017 I've been running Chemipure-Elite; in November 2017 supplemented ROX 8.0 carbon; February 2018 started using Purigen

- Test kits: Red Sea Marine Care Test Kit (ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, pH and alk), Salifert for calcium, magnesium and alkalinity

- Refractometer: ATC Vertex (also use a Sybon); November 2017: after suspecting some salinity issues, I've been calibrating using Brightwell, Tropic Marin AND PinPoint calibration solutions


Notes on Maintenance:

- Weekly ~3-5 gallon water changes.  Every. Week.  No excuses!

- Currently only running filter floss and a little carbon/GFO in the caddy

- No protein skimmer (yet); now running Reef Octopus NS80!

- No dosing (yet); February 2018: waiting for ESV B-Ionic to arrive next week



- Yellow Watchman Goby, ~1.5 inches (added March 30, 2017) RIP my little jumping bean :(

- 2x Black Misbar Ocellaris, ~1.75 inches (added March 31, 2017); February 2018: approx. 3 inches and 2 inches long

- 1x Banggai Cardinalfish, ~2 inches (added July 15, 2017); February 2018: approx. 3 inches long

- 1x Citron Goby, ~1.75 inches (added July 15, 2017); February 2018: 2-2.5 inches long

- 1x Cherub Angelfish, ~3/4 inch (added February 9, 2018, very tiny!)



- A lone Blue-legged Hermit

- 2x Spiny/Ninja Star snails

- 3x Trochus snails

- 1 cerith snail

- 1 large and 1 small nassarius snail



- Flame Tip BTA; sold! 

- Duncan

- Green and purple-tipped hammers

- Neon green trumpet

- Sunny D palys

- Various dark green zoas

- Purple monti cap frag

- Red Encrusting Goni (??) frag

- Green Button Polyps

- Some purple and blue mushrooms

- Sour Apple Birdsnest frag

- Forest Fire Digi frag

- Green star polyps

- Toadstool

- Kenya tree coral

- Fuzzy green mushrooms

- Clove polyps

- Dragon eye zoas (pink)

- Torch


Food Stuff:

- Calanus Flake Food Omega One Marine Flakes

- NLS Thera-A Regular 1mm Pellets

- Hikari Bio-Pure Frozen Mysis

- Hikari Bio-Pure Frozen Spirulina Brine Shrimp

- Hikari Bio-Pure Frozen Krill

- Hikari Bio-Pure Frozen Squid (nem's fav)

- Omega One Freeze Dried Mysis

- Selcon

- PE Mysis 1mm pellets

- LRS Reef Frenzy

- OSI Spirulina Flakes


I think that covers the main stuff?  I hope I'm not forgetting anything... this is long enough.


I like to keep it real simple.  The tank is at the office so I can fiddle with them throughout the day, whenever, but it can't be too complicated.  Low maintenance is the goal, though I'm so consumed by it that I spend a lot more time on the tank than I really need to.  I chose to keep it as low cost as I could, while not compromising with things that are "cheap" and/or unreliable.  I've been happy with all purchases so far, no major issues or scares, and will just have to drool over all of the high end equipment others get to play with!


Thanks for looking!


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I love this! Your corals look so beautiful! I hope my tank looks half as good as this in a few months. Whereabouts in Canada are you?

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Just now, Madcat said:

I love this! Your corals look so beautiful! I hope my tank looks half as good as this in a few months. Whereabouts in Canada are you?


Thank you so much!  It feels like it has taken forever to get to this point, and things have just started to fill in a little bit!  I'll post the progress pics, which are pretty brutal.  It's really only been, eh, about 6 months with corals.  Hardest part is keeping my hands out of the tank to leave things alone long enough to grow!


I'm in New Brunswick!  Not many of us out here, but some :)

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Oh my, and here we are.  This was day 1, so Jan. 21st.  I'm using a solid oak cabinet, and that thing is solid!  It's been serving as a tank stand for 7 months and I'm really pleased with it.  But it's not beautiful, and doesn't look like a tank stand, and is 6 inches shorter than I'd like... though, it works.  That's the 12g cube.


This is in an office.  The 12g is going into the waiting room and am setting up the 25g as you can see by the mess.




Anddd wet.  Same day.



OH have mercy on me, look at this tank lid.  What a botch job!  I killed it, badly!  Can you see how it fits one corner, but totally misses the other 3?  Unusable.  This is the IM kit and (no hate intended) I really did not like it.  The frame was fine and I was able to fix and salvage it, but the mesh is like a thick, hard plastic and was brittle.  It and the spline was too thick and I could barely get it in the frame.  I had to use so much pressure that I didn't notice my corners were not square.  A $45 mistake, ouch!  I would have tried the much loved BRS kit but I'm in Canada and it would have cost me, which I now think would have been worth it.  I'm laughing at this photo as I type this... it is SO BAD. 


Anyways, for the future, $20 could have gotten me an identical frame from a hardware store and mesh.


To solve the problem I went to the fabric store and picked up some white bridal tulle as you will probably see in other pics.  It's a bit soft and will droop in the water, but it'll do for now.  All of this work and I still had my tiny watchman goby squeeze through a <1/4" gap. sigh.


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We had 0 ammonia after a week (seeded from established tank), but I wanted things to run much longer before livestock.  Here we are on February 27th, after over a month of letting things cook.  The scape is awful but was bewildered with that huge 10lb rock I was sent, an what to do it. <_< I actually see that I did add a small mushroom and my green button polyps as my guinea pigs when I was happy with the water... they did great!



I wanted the tank to have lots of time, so here we are in March with our first goodies!  Also, it was a snowy winter so I couldn't have anything shipped until then anyway! 



Does anyone else get absolutely giddy with unboxing? Let's see what we have...


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One more post before bed time! :blink:


This was a bit of a jump for me... my first anemone.  Like I mentioned, I have about a year with saltwater tank experience but have been keeping it very easy mode for the most part (clownfish, cleaner shrimp, snails, hermits, softies, and a Duncan).  This anemone was meant to bring me out of my comfort zone, and it did, and I am very happy with the outcome!  It was a bit of a challenge, though research and diligence carried us a long way.



I chipped away at that huge rock to try to give me a bit of a shape that I could work with.  This is an improvement but still not there yet.  Here we are temperature acclimating.  Light was on for pic, then turned down for acclimation.  We have from left to right: Purple Monti Cap, Dragon Eye Zoa (green), Green Hammer, Encrusting Goni (I think), Sunny D paly/zoa/unsure, the BTA and finally Trumpet Coral. 


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Here are the first couple of things from the order back in March, shortly after adding to the tank.  I've always wanted Sunny D and those 2-3 small heads have grown and am now up to 8 and counting!  Here's to a rock covered with Sunny D!!!  On the right is, I believe, the green Dragon Eye.




I'm still not positive, but the freebie (below) I received is, I think, a Red Encrusting Goni frag. No? I had no clue for months, assuming encrusting SPS, but in the last month had the suggestion of goni.  I laughed, then looked up encrusting varieties and... voila.  On the right of the frag you can see it has receded quite a bit... it's a slow grower but it has fully recovered!




My very first Hammer! The only LPS I have experience with is a Duncan, and oh my gosh those things are temperatmental.  I really peeved it off once and it took months for it to open, and months again to color up.  Woo :wub: But we are talking about the Hammer!  Here it is just opening up, more of a teal-ish green than a neon, lime green.  Started at 2 heads as you see.



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You can't really see in this photo, but this Purple Monti Cap has one or two small, teeny, tiny, little black dots on it.  Having no prior experience with SPS, and this being my first, I though it could be normal... maybe an odd polyp or a stress response from shipping.  Well, no... I was wrong.




We're jumping ahead a bit but a few weeks later I finally decided that no... that doesn't look normal.  Those few spots quickly covered the monti in a coat of black spots.  I'm giving myself the jeebies looking at this again!  The frag seemed washed out in color and though the polyps are absolutely miniscule, they were retracted.  I decided to pull the thing and give it a series of dips.  I did lots of research and though it seemed Bayer's was the stuff, I couldn't access it (Canada, eh).  I had some Coral Rx and though it did not claim to be effective against black bugs, I tried...




Here is the result after one dip!  All but 3 black bugs detached.  I did four dips in total and that's when the frag was finally freed of these little beasties.  It has now almost doubled in size and is a nice, deep purple.



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Thrassian Atoll

Great first post and welcome to the page!!  Your tank is looking great and I will be following along.


 I am loving my IM 25 Lagoon more and more everyday.  Can't wait until I am able start stocking it.

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Here we are at March 12th and I could not believe the copepods and isopods I had in my tank!  They took off like crazy, and only had corals... so was only feeding the Duncan and nem.  The copepods have since stabilized as the clowns pick them off, but still there :)  I don't add pods so this was neat to see.




My third LPS: my neon green Trumpet Coral!  I love this thing!  Here we have a little tentacle action (and some angry palys in the back)



I was ecstatic to see this Duncan come around.  I thought for sure I had killed it, and here we are with the new heads getting bigger!  March 24th.


4 minutes ago, TILTON said:

Great first post and welcome to the page!!  Your tank is looking great and I will be following along.


 I am loving my IM 25 Lagoon more and more everyday.  Can't wait until I am able start stocking it.


Thank you kindly :) I can't get enough of the Lagoons!!! I love them!  I saw your thread and will be following also.  Cheers!

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We are back at March 3rd when I received the livestock order.  Just wanted to show the nem after it was added to the tank!  Tried to find a nice crevice to drop it into and it took hold immediately.  It ended up moving up by about 2 inches, which allowed it to stick its foot into a deep crevice.  Here is what it looked like a couple of hours after adding to the tank.  It certainly looks a lot different today! 




The photo below is April 6th, a month later.  Look at the color change.  What???  I would be lying if I said I wasn't a little disappointed.  The light settings are slightly different, but you can see it lost a lot of its deep, rich color and even lost the bubble tips (slightly bubbled, but not like it was).  I know BTAs can lose their bubbles, but I hoped mine wouldn't. 


This is where we had some troubles.  I wondered if my light was too strong, so I was played with the acclimation mode the first few weeks.  Doing this, I was worried the nem wasn't getting enough light so I was feeding about once a week, which it readily accepted.  I don't have any photos of it looking its worst, but the tentacles on the back half of the nem were gone, or seemed gone.  It appeared the arms were shrunken down to almost nothing, and I was totally and utterly freaked.  I researched for hours!  I do believe that if I didn't act quickly that it probably would have died.  It does not take long for these to go from angry to dead!


With the nem shrinking, and "losing" some of its arms... my research told me it was starving.  I bailed on slow light acclimation and cranked the lights up a little more every day and fed every day for a couple of weeks.  Boy, did it ever come around.  As you can see in my latest FTS, the thing has gotten huuuuuuuuuge.  No more bubbles, which I have come to love, and it got some good color back.


Disclaimer: I know it was a risk adding the anemone so early, and me only having about a year of experience.  I know!  I do not recommend doing what I did.  If I didn't obsess as much as I did (and still do), the nem would have been toast in no time.  It's definitely a step up in difficulty and you want to make sure you know what you're getting into before getting one.  I thought I did, but still had to do some quick learning.  Now I can say it is my favourite tank inhabitant :)



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I'm jumping in and out of order, sorry!  Below is the FTS as of March 24th, 2017. 


No fish at that point yet, just a few snails and a single hermit.  Nutrients have always been low and so I've never had more than a minor bloom of diatoms.  (Except in the last few weeks I had cyano exclusive to the back wall from too much light! Cured after a few days with reduced light, feeding and a big WC). 


By this point, in March, I was feeling "okay."  I felt a little defeated by the nem as it wasn't doing that well at this point, and everything looked so small.  Colors weren't popping yet, and there was just something lacking, it seemed.  I loved this tank but by this point, I was in a bit of a rut and had to just keep up with water changes so things could hopefully color up and grow.  Everything was fine (the palys still angry about something) but I felt like I was missing something...







*In this photo I can see some bad shadowing, and dark spots on the sides of the tank, especially the left side.  I am running one AI Prime and was worried it wouldn't be enough.  In this photo the intensity was only around 70% or not even.  I was not happy about the dark spots and then I realized the arm could still be adjusted for another 4 inches!  And also forward!  I moved the light up and out and the spread was WAY BETTER.  I have no problems with one AI Prime over this 25g for my needs.


I have a major soft spot for clowns.  I have a beautiful, big, bright orange ocellaris in the 12g so this brings me up to 3 clowns in my care.  I didn't want to get clowns for the 25g so I could eventually merge the tanks... oh well. This brings us up to March 31st!




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I just wanted to post some recent photos of the lagoon since a lot has changed.  Here is the tank as it stands now.




- 2x black misbar clowns (they have gotten so big!)

- 1x banggai cardinalfish (also very big!)

- 1x citron goby

- 1x cherub angelfish (added last Friday)






I've decided to go more white on the lights, though I am still a sucker for a blue look.  May switch back to more blue.  I'm a big fan of Cheffy's AI settings (photo below for example), but am currently running a slightly edited Saxby.  I've really stressed them out with moving the tank and doing a complete and utter rescape, as you can see! 


It's nearly impossible to appreciate in photo, but in person I love, love, love the new scape.  I've managed (somehow) to create a vast network of tunnels and caves with the rocks, and some new branch rock I picked up not long ago.  I'll try to do a "tour" of photos so you can see what I mean with all of the caves. The cherub cruises the caves and rocks all day long.


The angelfish was a very, very thought-out addition.  I know four fish in a Lagoon 25g makes for a fully stocked tank.  I've added the protein skimmer, which skims a little wet but skim it does, and I've added 500mL of Seachem Matrix.  And, as you can see, there is a ton of rock.  If I were to guess, at least 25 - 30 lbs.  I'm keeping a close eye on coral nipping, which there has been no signs whatsoever.  Model citizen, and quite a good eater.


I've sold the anemone, which I'm relieved with.  After being so good for almost a year, it just would not find a spot and kept walking the tank.  There's not enough room for it to roam around safely so it just had to go.  The poor birdsnest (yes, that browned one in the photo...) is taking weeks to recover from stings.  At one point it was a glowing neon teal, and gorgeous.  Maybe we will get there again.  The rest of the corals are just dull and need time to adjust, recover and come around from the stress of the last two months.


We had some salinity issues.  I'll keep it short, but basically I think I was maintaining a very low salinity after trying to calibrate with RO/DI.  30ppt? 28ppt?  Most of my zoas curled up and died over November and December and I had no idea why.  Salinity has only been corrected in mid-Jan  


I started getting this horrible diatom, or cyano outbreak on my sandbed, starting in November after I tried splitting the anemone (it was an experiment, and I do not recommend, and I'm sorry!).  I saw that my GSP was even starting to brown.  At this point I was getting very discouraged and was in a slump with this tank.   Not only did I have salinity problems with miscalibration, but I also had some alk swings and let it drop to 5 (I wasn't dosing, just water changes).  Anyway, I thought I had pests, I thought I had allelopathy, etc. etc. I was just stumped.


Anyways!  We are back on track.  Nice, white sand bed, nitrates maintained at 5ppm, alk/calc are being repaired with 2-part (alk now solid 7 and on its way up), all fish are swimming and eating, the cherub is still acting like... an angel.  Really, that thing is precious.  So far!!


I'd like to back track and post the photos from the summer up to this point, to show you how much can happen in a few months!


While I muster up the stamina for another post, here is a top-down before all the chaos broke out:



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Just a quick update before heading in to check on the tank.


ESV B-Ionic has been great, and easy to use for those of us who are new to dosing and not comfortable with it.  I was very worried about overdosing and creating issues, such as spikes.  I've only been dosing the recommended starting amount of 1mL per 4 gallons, which is about 5mL of each component for me.  I've been dosing daily, and alk has been steady at ~8.6, calcium around 440ppm and pH 8.2.  Mag is making me scratch my head a bit, as it is consistently over 1500ppm (~1600ppm).  Not sure if this will cause any issues, or if it will come back down when I switch from Fritz RPM back to Instant Ocean.


I am going to stick with the 5mL daily 2-part, which doesn't seem like much but it's keeping my alkalinity stable where it was dropping to 6, even 5 at times, and the calcium from dropping to 380-390, just between weekly water changes.


The purple monti cap was the first to take off!  After a week of dosing I noticed major new growth, which is awesome!  Will get some pics to document, and a new FTS today.


Seachem Matrix (a whole 500mL bottle) is still sitting in the tank and seeding, hopefully.  I have about half in one of the media caddies and the other half in a mesh bag hanging in the return chamber.


Return pump needs a vinegar soak and scrub, and probably the Jebao powerhead.  I don't know if anyone else finds this, but the Jebao simply won't move water if it's not cleaned at least every 2 months.  I like the powerhead, but it'll stop working on you so you have to keep an eye on it!!


Nitrates have been staying right around 5-10ppm, which I am very pleased with!  I don't know if I can attribute this to the 30mL of Purigen I added a few weeks ago, the addition of Matrix (wouldn't be reducing nitrates yet, if it does at all!), the protein skimmer (skims wet regardless of how I set it) or weekly 5 gallon water changes with major rock turkey-basting and sand vacuuming.  Or, a combination of each.  Either way, no issues with the addition of a fifth fish and the Cherub is still a model citizen!


I have realized how critical it is to blasting rocks and cleaning the sand bed regularly, weekly.  In December/Jan I had realized the nitrates shot up to 20ppm! Could have been more actually.  I had not been aggressively collecting detritus, and had allowed it to build up on the rocks, and I was not aggressively cleaning the sand bed.  Hence the algae outbreak I had???  Once the algae went away, I've been very diligent with this as part of my weekly maintenance.  I now enjoy it as I can see my tank directly benefit from a good cleaning! :) 

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Great looking Tank.


Do you still think the AI Prime is good enough for this tank?


I'm still debating myself between a RedSea Nano Max 20 gal and this IM 25 Lagoon; I like better to have a larger footprint but don't want to go with something bigger than a AI on either option I go



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22 hours ago, GrumpyDaddy68 said:

Great looking Tank.


Do you still think the AI Prime is good enough for this tank?


I'm still debating myself between a RedSea Nano Max 20 gal and this IM 25 Lagoon; I like better to have a larger footprint but don't want to go with something bigger than a AI on either option I go



Hey, thanks!!


I might be the minority, but I think a single AI Prime is fine.  But, if you are going for corals that are demanding, and have dreams of having lots of SPS... get a Hydra 26 or get two AI Prime HDs. Also, if you think the shadowing will bother you, get more light.  Take a look at my pics.  Of course it is much brighter and well-lit in person, but you can see quite a bit of shadowing in the photos... though the spread is pretty darn good I would say!  I have had great success with softies (including zoas, palys), LPS and SPS and even a BTA.


There have been many moments over the last year where I have had an AI Prime HD in my shopping cart while browsing online stores, but I end up changing my mind because I really just do not need a second one for this tank as it is.


Keep in mind what you are planning for your rock formations and scape.  I went from two big rock islands on either side of the tank to one, big central rock formation (like it is now).  If I wanted to do multiple islands again I would benefit from the spread of two Primes.  The central formation is great with one Prime as I can stick my SPS in the top, middle and disperse my other corals all around.  Make sense??


Anyway!  You can always start with one and add another.  You could also consider something like a Kessil A360WE or two Kessil A80's ??  But I liked the controllability and price tag of the AI, which is what sold me in the end.


And on your last point, I am a huge fan of the large footprint.  I feel it gives me a little more flexibility with stocking fish (more swimming room) and it gives endless scaping opportunities. 



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A few updated shots from today!  The purple monti cap is taking off like crazy.  Once it gets going, the growth is fantastic. 


I take all photos with my phone, and the Cherub Angelfish is particularly difficult to photograph!  She is very fast and does not stop swimming!  She is much more comfortable now (took about a week to really swim out in the open), and all five fish get along very well.  I'm shock, amazed and very pleased.  Very minimal bickering, which will include the Banggai pushing a clown out of it's way, rarely.


Here is an updated FTS and an effort to photograph the angel!  She really likes to hang around with the Citron Goby, which is a hilarious fish.






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So, here we are as of March 8th, 2018.  I'm still really liking the bright white, though everything is a little more washed-out-looking in my photos, which are untouched.  In person, the tank just glows, and is so crisp and crystal clear.  The photos just aren't doing it justice!!!


The browned-out birdsnest and palys are finally coloring back up again.


Not only color, but growth has exploded.  It's most obvious with the purple monti cap and birdsnest.


Anyway, just rambling to myself!  Keeping hands out and parameters (and light settings!) stable makes for a very happy tank.


Just for fun, here are some stats:


ammonia: 0 ppm (SeaChem Ammonia Alert, always a white/ivory, or a reading of zero)

nitrite: 0 ppm

pH: 8.3

alk: 8.2

calc: not tested today (but is ~440ppm when alk is stable in the 8's)

mag: not tested, but running high... 1500+ (actually ~1600); switching salt from Fritz to something else

salinity: 1.026 or 35ppt

temp: ~77.5F (I have 3 thermometers I check and average, lol)

nitrate: 5-10ppm (API), 4.00ppm (Red Sea Pro, low range), 4.00-8.00 (Red Sea Pro, high range)... all different values, but you get the idea/range :P 

*keeping a close eye on nitrates as the tank is heavily stocked and I worry about climbing 'trates with the addition of the Cherub.  They're right where I want them, though phosphate may be a touch high.  I need to get that checked!!


So the ESV 2-part couldn't be easier to use, and I'm not sure if I need to increase or not.  I've been using it for a while and alk has been right around 8.3-8.6 with calcium right around 440pm.  I might play around with increasing doses, but my stats are stable while dosing 5mL of each component daily, which is also the recommended starting amount.  My tank might just not be consuming all that much and just needs a little bit of help to keep from swinging.  Anyway, I'm happy manually dosing 5mL of each daily if it keeps everything stable.


Also, just noticed some spots of coralline in the back, finally!  The tank is a year old and this is the first real sign of coralline algae. 


Other than that, the angelfish is doing very well.  All five fish really get along great, and almost seem to hang around together.  It's really funny to watch, and a relief as there is no aggression or coral nipping, which I was worried about.  She eats everything I feed the tank and is a great addition.



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Tank looks great! Filling in nicely and love the little angel  :wub:

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Woooaaaahhh yours is looking awesome!! I love that candy cane and the monti. I’m thinking of getting a mystic sunset monti to attach to the back of the glass. 


Ill definitely catch up with this! 


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7 minutes ago, Tamberav said:

Tank looks great! Filling in nicely and love the little angel  :wub:

Thank you very much!! It's finally starting to look healthy from all the issues I had. You think you're doing everything right, and then things start slipping. But as long as you learn, I suppose!


I didn't know I would love that angel so much. It will be a sad day if she ever decides to taste the corals because she's otherwise perfect! My other choices were a small wrasse or gramma. Wonder how they might have worked out. Who knows!

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1 minute ago, CarolinaShoreReef said:

Woooaaaahhh yours is looking awesome!! I love that candy cane and the monti. I’m thinking of getting a mystic sunset monti to attach to the back of the glass. 


Ill definitely catch up with this! 


It's a long read. I'll have to go back and trim some ramblings out so people don't get too lost. I just can't stop myself! I don't have a lot of friends in the hobby so I have to spew all of my thoughts online. Sorry. :blush:


I love the candy cane too! I am super keen on a purple one should I ever see a frag. 


I have to be careful now because everything is growing so fast! I won't have room for much more!!

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20 minutes ago, sugar said:

It's a long read. I'll have to go back and trim some ramblings out so people don't get too lost. I just can't stop myself! I don't have a lot of friends in the hobby so I have to spew all of my thoughts online. Sorry. :blush:


I love the candy cane too! I am super keen on a purple one should I ever see a frag. 


I have to be careful now because everything is growing so fast! I won't have room for much more!!

I’m the same way, no one I know will tolerate my rambling on of reefing except my subs and the guys at the LFS haha. 


Your tank really took off and I love the new scape you did!!! I enjoyed how detailed you made everything in here, don’t change it haha. That’ll be very helpful to myself and others! ?

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Things are holding steady!  So rewarding when you can get to a point where you can keep your hands out (mostly) and just let things go!  Here are some updated shots from today, and I'll keep posting top-downs on the intro post for comparison.


I moved a few things around yesterday.  The Duncan was not expanding fully while it was up front and center.  Too much light?  Too much flow?  Not sure.  It, as well as the torch and purple-tipped hammer are still settling into their new spots.  Not 100% happy with their placement, but we're getting there.



Here's the side view I get while at my desk:



I noticed a "speck" of something on the purple monti cap, and went to blast it off with a pipette as I normally do, as it's usually detritus or a small collonista snail.  To my shock and horror, a circle of flesh blew off with it!  I think a small hammer tentacle broke off and landed on the monti, thus stinging the area.  I mean, it's less than half an inch in diameter... but, yikes!  I hope that spot heals quickly.



The monti always grew in a flat plate, but since the total revamp it's been growing upwards, cup-like.  I like it!  It grows wildly fast, and it one of my very favorite corals. 



The last pic is just to demonstrate the gnarly microbubbles after turning the skimmer back on!  Whoa.


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Too beautiful!! Idk how you keep from looking at it with it being so close to your desk haha. 


I damaged a bit of my monti while moving it, had three white spots the size of a cm round, and they’ve pretty much almost fully healed in a week. I think you’ll be good. 

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