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Jackal227

Jackal's Biocube 16 LED - 3 Years In and Counting!

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Jackal227
12 hours ago, banasophia said:

Your pics make the aiptasia look pretty! I’m having an outbreak of them in my tank right now too. 

Ya, I didn't mind them much while the rocks were empty because it gave a little movement to the tank.  There are a couple rather large ones though that are probably 3-4" across. 

 

But now they have to go to make room for new life. 

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JimmyNeutronium

Hey quick question, what stand are you using with the tank? Is it the stand that they sell along side the biocube? If so how do you feel about it? Thanks! I’ve been following this build for a good while now. I am about 1 month into my own, tank finished cycling and going to quarantine new fish in the new year. 

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Jackal227

Yes,  I'm using the standard Biocube stand.  It's nothing special just particle board but it's worked fine for me.  I do tend to hold the tank with one hand while I scrape the glass as a precaution to keep it from swaying side to side.  It has adequate space underneath for storage.  I do wish it was a bit taller though to give easier viewing of the tank. 

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NanoNate

Hey Jackal,

Love the setup you got going. I'll be setting up my own and first biocube 16 very soon, hopefully with something similar like yours. 

I'm wondering what the GPH your KPS is set at, and if the lighting schedule is any different from what you posted when you started the thread? Do you have any tips in general for a newbie? 

 

Thanks!

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debbeach13

What is this new life you speak of?

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Jackal227
16 hours ago, NanoNate said:

Hey Jackal,

Love the setup you got going. I'll be setting up my own and first biocube 16 very soon, hopefully with something similar like yours. 

I'm wondering what the GPH your KPS is set at, and if the lighting schedule is any different from what you posted when you started the thread? Do you have any tips in general for a newbie? 

 

Thanks!

My lighting schedule is still the same as posted.

 

For the KPS I started with the program "LPS/Soft Corals Max 50L".  I then adjusted all of the constant flow and night modes up to 35%.  I also changed all of the variable modes up to 25%-50%.

 

8 hours ago, debbeach13 said:

What is this new life you speak of?

The Aiptasia is pretty much all gone now.  I've still got to make a couple preparations before getting them but for fish I've decided to go with a Rainford's Goby and a Jawfish.

 

For corals it's going to be mainly soft and easy to keep corals as I won't be dosing this tank.  I'm thinking a heavy focus on RFA's with some sexy shrimp would give some nice splashes of color and movement. 

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NanoNate

Have another question that came up. What media bags are you using for the matrix? I've been looking around and the majority are about 8"x6" which I think is a little big. Yours seem to fit perfectly in to the chamber from the pictures I've seen.

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Jackal227
4 hours ago, NanoNate said:

Have another question that came up. What media bags are you using for the matrix? I've been looking around and the majority are about 8"x6" which I think is a little big. Yours seem to fit perfectly in to the chamber from the pictures I've seen.

It's been a long time since I got them but these look about right: 

Media Bags

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Jackal227

Well I made some progress today.  I built the cave for the jawfish out of some pvc parts and then I used some barnacles to conceal the outside: 

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I also doubled the sandbed in case the fish doesn't like my pvc contraption then it can still build its own borrow.  Now I just have to wait until they are in stock.

 

The tank is still cloudy from the new sand but here it is in its current state: 

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Currently housing a giant Duncan coral that was getting stung in the other tank.  There's also 4 Rock Flower Anemones, a few Zoas that have started coming back since getting rid of the Aiptasia, some clove polyps, a gorgonian, and I've added some GSP to the back wall which has just started entrusting.

 

The sole fish in the tank has been getting larger but is still quite shy: 

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There's a long ways to go but this tank is ready to evolve. 

 

 

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Jackal227

I added some new corals to the tank today.

 

3 new RFA's:

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Here's some of the existing ones: 

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A new Orange Gorgonian to complement the existing purple one: 

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Also added some Zoas:

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And we're already seeing new growths out of the existing clove polyps. I look forward to seeing a big patch of these together: 

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The tank is starting to look good again.  Current FTS under white and blue lights:

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Jackal227

The new corals have settled in and are doing well so far. 

 

This RFA trio are beautiful.  I really like the pink striped one it stands out under the blue lights.  I would like to add another 4 or 5 down the road.  I think that it would be neat to see if I could get them to spawn eventually. 

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The curved edge makes it tough to get a good shot of the cloves but they are doing good and seem to be multiplying quickly.  Not sure where I want to place them yet but they are doing well on the sandbed so far: 

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I started the GSP behind the rockwork so it's hard to see but it's now creeping up and will soon fill in the back wall.  I think it'll give a nice contrast with the giant Duncan coral. 

 

Early morning FTS:

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NanoNate

Hey Jackal,

Had yet another question pop up. Did you ever have a problem with your sand being moved out of the corners by the flow? If so how did you solve the issue? 
 

Thanks!

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Jackal227
50 minutes ago, NanoNate said:

Hey Jackal,

Had yet another question pop up. Did you ever have a problem with your sand being moved out of the corners by the flow? If so how did you solve the issue? 
 

Thanks!

I did experience it a little bit early on with the oolite (very fine) sand.  After a couple months the bacteria will build up in the sand and it tends to stay put.  You could also try changing the direction of the power head to see if it helps. 

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Sycamoron

Hi Jackal, a question for you from your Biocube 16 days. Did you run into any aggression problems with your Royal Gramma? I'm thinking of adding one to my Biocube and want to avoid problems for my Mandarin and Rainford Goby.  

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Jackal227

My Royal Gramma was very shy and spent most of its time in the rocks.  They like to hide in a cave.  I never saw any aggression between it or the other fish. 

 

How do you like the Rainford's Goby?  I'm planning on adding a captive bred one once the weather warms up a bit. 

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Sycamoron

Thanks, Jackall.  Gives me more confidence about that choice.

 

The Rainford is my favorite fish. It is out and about most of the time, inspecting the rocks and nibbling on algae. It has a couple of caves it dug under the rocks and gives me irritated looks (I imagine) when it has to clear the openings after I siphon clean the substrate.

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Jackal227

The tank has been on auto pilot for a bit but is still doing well. 

 

The RFA trio has put on some considerable size since they were added.  The three staying together give the tank a nice splash of color: 

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The GSP on the back wall has been growing well and I feel it'll be covered soon: 

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As the weather starts warming up I'll start looking for some new livestock soon.

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Jackal227

The Gorgonians always seem happy in this "dirtier" tank with polyps always out.  The one that I tried previously seemed to struggle. 

 

Orange base:

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Purple base:

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Jackal227

The Biocube has been on autopilot for a while but it's still doing good. 

 

The GSP has almost filled in the back wall now, the Zoas are expanding, and the RFAs have been growing.

 

Daylights:

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Blues:

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While I was at the LFS today I managed to find one of the livestock choices for the tank.  They had a pair of sexy shrimp that I picked up.  I'd like to get another 5 but it's a start: 

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I'm still on the hunt for the two fish and some additional RFAs to fill out the tank. 

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Jackal227

The sexy shrimp have found each other and they like hanging out around the RFAs which is nice.   They are interesting creatures to watch:

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I also managed to get a rare picture of the mandarin.  It's still doing well and getting big but mostly hides in the back of the tank making pictures nearly impossible:

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Jackal227

I added 5 new RFA's to the tank this week.  This brings the total up to 11 now.  They are starting to fill in the rock work and most of them have grouped up: 

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These guys are really starting to look good.   I'm hoping that I'll get to see some spawning in the future. 

 

I also was able to finally find a Pearly Jawfish.  The first night it stayed in the pvc tube that I made: 

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The second day I found him in a hole that he dug in the back corner of the tank: 

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By the third day he's starting to become more bold and hovers in the water column now.  This is also the first day that he has started eating.  It'll be interesting to see where he chooses to stay in the long term: 

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This fish is stunning.  The camera doesn't pick up the blue body very well but it almost looks like he is glowing in the tank.  I look forward to seeing how he interacts as he settles in more. 

 

In other good news, I'm starting to see some nice growth out of the Gorgonians.  The orange one in particular seems to be splitting multiple new branches out: 

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FTS:

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Elitists

Hey jackal, I have a question. I’ve been following your journal and I’m about to start my own biocube. Just waiting for the last few items to arrive but I was curious on your fail safes. I bought the inkbird temp controller and now looking a power loss options. Do you use any kind of ups? I have a generator but want something to get by if I’m away at work.

 

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LazyFish

More rfa ❤️ mine breed prety often I find having lights with a moon phase helps also seems to occur around around the time the lights are going off or about 8pm.vi love the bam bams. I just ordered some.

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Jackal227
8 hours ago, Elitists said:

Hey jackal, I have a question. I’ve been following your journal and I’m about to start my own biocube. Just waiting for the last few items to arrive but I was curious on your fail safes. I bought the inkbird temp controller and now looking a power loss options. Do you use any kind of ups? I have a generator but want something to get by if I’m away at work.

 

I haven't added a UPS since I haven't had any power outages over a few hours, but it is certainly useful to have.  BRS has a good series comparing some different models that I've considered getting. 

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Jackal227
5 hours ago, LazyFish said:

More rfa ❤️ mine breed prety often I find having lights with a moon phase helps also seems to occur around around the time the lights are going off or about 8pm.vi love the bam bams. I just ordered some.

That's good to hear. 

 

Do you notice yours spawning around the solstice? 

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