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Denise's Skull Pico Creative Container Contest Entry

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vlangel

The snake skeleton is perfect on the goose neck.  Such a cool tank and so timely!

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dmw913

Themed frags:  Green snake polyps.  Utter Chaos.  Small green rock nem.  Neon nepthea.  Orange setosa.  Purple death palys (not open yet).  Pics taken with iPhone and orange gel filter to knock down the blues.

 

 

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dmw913

So, here's a hint for morons like me:

 

When you're gluing frags for your pico and one falls off, DO NOT panic and shove your hand to the bottom of the jar/container to try to grab it.  Picos are smaller than your usual tank and you displace enough water to have it overflow, splash it all over the table, down the wall and onto your power strip...I might or might not know this from experience...

 

PS:  Two snails and a blue legged crab added today as clean up/livestock.

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Rene
20 minutes ago, dmw913 said:

So, here's a hint for morons like me:

 

When you're gluing frags for your pico and one falls off, DO NOT panic and shove your hand to the bottom of the jar/container to try to grab it.  Picos are smaller than your usual tank and you displace enough water to have it overflow, splash it all over the table, down the wall and onto your power strip...I might or might not know this from experience...

 

PS:  Two snails and a blue legged crab added today as clean up/livestock.

I may or may not have knocked a light fixture into the tank on more than one occasion and, in a panic, reached in to pull it back out again. 

 

All lights are securely mounted to the tank now or entirely removed from the area and unplugged during maintenance. 

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Droy008
1 hour ago, Rene said:

I may or may not have knocked a light fixture into the tank on more than one occasion and, in a panic, reached in to pull it back out again. 

 

All lights are securely mounted to the tank now or entirely removed from the area and unplugged during maintenance. 

If you don't post anymore updates in the next few days. I'm going to assume you've just electrocuted yourself to death. :lol:

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Rene
4 hours ago, Droy008 said:

If you don't post anymore updates in the next few days. I'm going to assume you've just electrocuted yourself to death. :lol:

This was almost 20 years ago. I like to -think- I've learned not to put my hands in water with live electronics...

 

But time will tell!

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dmw913

@brandon429  I blasted the pico with ReefRoids, let it sit for an hour, blasted the rock and container as I drained the water out the bottom (my container is a beverage dispenser) and did 100% change.  Going to try this weekly.

 

Livestock update:  Nem has declared itself mobile and relocated which is a bummer because it's pretty hard to see now.  Looks like I'm going to have to pick a few more frags of green to offset the visual loss. ;)  My local club is having a fragfest 11/2.  Perfect timing!!!

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dmw913

So, apparently I couldn't wait for my local fragfest.  I went hog wild on the Cherry Corals Halloween live sale yesterday.  Now the thing that will be scary this Halloween is my Amex bill! :)  Frags arrive 11/1.  Specifically for the pico, I picked out some purple zoas, a JF Jack-o-Lantern lepto and a toxic green lepto.  

 

The tank is starting to see a little algae which isn't surprising.  It also looks like the dragon's breath is perking up and taking hold.  The tips show orange which is really pretty.  I have added a digital thermometer (noted in the build list above) as temp is a current concern.  By the end of the day temp is hitting about 80.5 which is hotter than I would like it to run.  I'm going to cut light down by an hour to see if that stops the ramp up.  I would rather not raise the light due to undesired spillover.  

 

Eye candy for this evening are the snake polyps, setosa, chaos zoas and a ricordea I poached from my main display.  

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Christopher Marks
On 10/24/2017 at 11:18 PM, dmw913 said:

RapidLED gooseneck arrived and I added a little dramatic flair!  This is final contest setup. 

 

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This is so cool with the light! Awesome concept and theme, the neon green frags you’ve chosen are perfect!

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dmw913

Morning temp = 77.9.  We'll see what it's at when I get home with the reduction in photoperiod.  

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dmw913

Temp stayed under 80 last night by reducing photoperiod for an hour so that's good piece of data.  

 

100% water change tonight as I was getting brown film on glass at the bottom of the container and putting my hand in there to toothbrush it displaced enough water, I might as well drain the whole thing. :)  Needless to say, I have now ordered a Nanomag as I may want to clean the class without a 100% water change at some point.  LOL.  

 

However, as I was draining the water, I noticed how yellow it was in the white 5 gallon bucket which was just fascinating to me as I've never kept a tank without chemical filtration or a skimmer that removed a lot of the things that discolor the water.  It was also interesting as I had completed a water change on Friday so this discoloration seemed significant to me only 4 days later.  Learning a lot and the contest is just getting started!  

 

Official start of the contest tonight.  Let's get this party started!

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dmw913

Local frag swap was great last night!  Picked up a couple great pieces for the tank including a Jack-o-lantern lepto.  How could i not have this in a Halloween pico?!?!?  Temp seems better now that I've cut the photoperiod slightly.  Nem has moved again trying to get settled.  Now he's perched next to my frags.  Also picked up some joker palys that are barely opening and some red people eaters that seem really happy and look great under the light!

 

Also, in ease of use category, Nanomag arrived today and that thing is fantastic!!!  Much improved cleaning ability with all the glass curves!

 

Blast feeding and 100% water change tonight as well.

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dmw913

Good evening, friends!

 

A bit of a frustrating week with the pico.  The lepto started to bleach.  Clearly too much light.  I moved the light up several inches and lowered the photoperiod.  We'll see how it goes.

 

More importantly, I'm starting to be overrun with algae.  Looks like hair algae.  Really frustrating.  Did two 100% water changes this week.  Checked my TDS on my water just to be safe (0) but things are getting worse, not better.  

 

This is my first pico.  Is this part of the regular process of setup/aging or am I doing something wrong?  Any input would be really appreciated.

 

Best,

Denise

 

@brandon429 Any thoughts/suggestions???

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JcSH2o

What the WHAT?! Everything about this is fantastic! Absolutely fan-freaking-tastic. Nice job, and I can't wait to watch this one grow in! :naughtydance:

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Lula_Mae
49 minutes ago, dmw913 said:

Good evening, friends!

 

A bit of a frustrating week with the pico.  The lepto started to bleach.  Clearly too much light.  I moved the light up several inches and lowered the photoperiod.  We'll see how it goes.

 

More importantly, I'm starting to be overrun with algae.  Looks like hair algae.  Really frustrating.  Did two 100% water changes this week.  Checked my TDS on my water just to be safe (0) but things are getting worse, not better.  

 

This is my first pico.  Is this part of the regular process of setup/aging or am I doing something wrong?  Any input would be really appreciated.

 

Best,

Denise

 

@brandon429 Any thoughts/suggestions???

I'm having some issues too so my jar just got a deep clean and sandbed replacement because that black sand was going to be a pain lol.  I think part of it is that we can't run chemical/mechanical filtration like we're used to on larger tanks, and that makes it harder to control stuff like that.  Have you tried to apply peroxide on the rocks where the algae is?  I believe Natalia drains the water, applies peroxide, lets it sit, fills the bowl partway to rinse, empties, then fills again.  You can probably find info on her thread (her original bowl, not the contest bowl).

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dmw913
1 hour ago, Lula_Mae said:

I'm having some issues too so my jar just got a deep clean and sandbed replacement because that black sand was going to be a pain lol.  I think part of it is that we can't run chemical/mechanical filtration like we're used to on larger tanks, and that makes it harder to control stuff like that.  Have you tried to apply peroxide on the rocks where the algae is?  I believe Natalia drains the water, applies peroxide, lets it sit, fills the bowl partway to rinse, empties, then fills again.  You can probably find info on her thread (her original bowl, not the contest bowl).

Thanks for the suggestion!  I'll read up and give it a try!  I'm going to run a full battery of tests just to get an idea of what's fueling the algae and go from there.  I am wondering if I didn't cure the rock long enough before adding livestock.  As always, you are punished for impatience in this hobby!  

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Lula_Mae
3 minutes ago, dmw913 said:

Thanks for the suggestion!  I'll read up and give it a try!  I'm going to run a full battery of tests just to get an idea of what's fueling the algae and go from there.  I am wondering if I didn't cure the rock long enough before adding livestock.  As always, you are punished for impatience in this hobby!  

Too true!  Although my rock had been curing/cured a while and still has algae issues lol.

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vlangel
8 hours ago, Lula_Mae said:

I'm having some issues too so my jar just got a deep clean and sandbed replacement because that black sand was going to be a pain lol.  I think part of it is that we can't run chemical/mechanical filtration like we're used to on larger tanks, and that makes it harder to control stuff like that.  Have you tried to apply peroxide on the rocks where the algae is?  I believe Natalia drains the water, applies peroxide, lets it sit, fills the bowl partway to rinse, empties, then fills again.  You can probably find info on her thread (her original bowl, not the contest bowl).

 

7 hours ago, dmw913 said:

Thanks for the suggestion!  I'll read up and give it a try!  I'm going to run a full battery of tests just to get an idea of what's fueling the algae and go from there.  I am wondering if I didn't cure the rock long enough before adding livestock.  As always, you are punished for impatience in this hobby!  

I feel nervous about my jar as I did not really check it to make sure that it was cycled fully.  I am keeping my photophase short, only 6 hours and my light is fairly high.  Also I do 100% WC twice a week and use Seachem Stability after every WC.  Hopefully that will help the jar soft cycle and keep algae at bay.

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dmw913
17 hours ago, vlangel said:

 

I feel nervous about my jar as I did not really check it to make sure that it was cycled fully.  I am keeping my photophase short, only 6 hours and my light is fairly high.  Also I do 100% WC twice a week and use Seachem Stability after every WC.  Hopefully that will help the jar soft cycle and keep algae at bay.

I hear you.  I have been doing something similar in that I'm also doing 2 x 100% WC each week but I'm adding Microbacter7.  Before today's change I pulled out my Battlebrush and did a good scrubbing (pulling my rockwork out of the tank is a challenge given the small opening) and as the water was draining out of the dispenser spout, I kept turkey basting to keep junk in suspension.  I got an amazing amount of junk out with the water.  Additionally, after verifying this was allowed, I have started dosing .2 ml of hydrogen peroxide daily to continue to knock back algae.  Zoas don't like it for about an hour after dosing but it seems to be keeping things at bay for the moment.  

 

Here's a FTS for the week.  As always, iPhone pic with Coralfish12g gel filter held over the lens to knock down the blues.  

IMG_8610.JPG

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vlangel
18 hours ago, dmw913 said:

I hear you.  I have been doing something similar in that I'm also doing 2 x 100% WC each week but I'm adding Microbacter7.  Before today's change I pulled out my Battlebrush and did a good scrubbing (pulling my rockwork out of the tank is a challenge given the small opening) and as the water was draining out of the dispenser spout, I kept turkey basting to keep junk in suspension.  I got an amazing amount of junk out with the water.  Additionally, after verifying this was allowed, I have started dosing .2 ml of hydrogen peroxide daily to continue to knock back algae.  Zoas don't like it for about an hour after dosing but it seems to be keeping things at bay for the moment.  

 

Here's a FTS for the week.  As always, iPhone pic with Coralfish12g gel filter held over the lens to knock down the blues.  

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Yep, I am in the same boat as you as far as pulling my rockwork out.  It went into the jar but now with coral epoxied on idk.  Definitely as the coral grow it will be out of the question so I also turkey basted like crazy and syphoned the water while everything was in suspension.

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dmw913

11/18 Update.  

 

The battle with hair algae continues.  2 x 100% WC per week continues.  I have added a scarlet crab and snail to help manage the algae issues.  It's also fun to see the crab roaming around the tank.  

 

Today's FTS:  (Mr. Pincers is middle left.)

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dmw913

So very interesting.  Not sure if the water changes are just kicking in, the rock has finished its nasty cast off or if the scarlet and snail are making that big a difference, but there is a noticeable reduction in my algae issues!  

 

Here's hoping!!!

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vlangel
11 hours ago, dmw913 said:

So very interesting.  Not sure if the water changes are just kicking in, the rock has finished its nasty cast off or if the scarlet and snail are making that big a difference, but there is a noticeable reduction in my algae issues!  

 

Here's hoping!!!

That is good to hear.  I have 1 tiny hermit and 1 small trocus snail in my jar and its pretty clean.  I am hoping things continue in mine as they have been.

 

Your jar is looking great BTW.  And I love Mr Pinchers all the way at the top!  King of the hill.

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Felicia

Hi!  Just a reminder to please pm me your November full tank shot (FTS) along with a link to your build thread by the end of the day on November 30th.

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dmw913

Saturday end of month update:  150% water change yesterday.  I was getting really frustrated at not being able to clean the nooks and crannies of the skull.  Additionally, I saw that one of my frag plugs has two decent sized aiptasia on it so I gingerly removed the rock work from the tank and performed a 100% WC.  Scrubbed the glass and popped off the zoa frag that had the aiptasia as well as another frag that you couldn't really see because it sat at the "neck" of the skull and the nepthea frag because it was just sitting so low.  

 

While I was doing all of this, I managed to snap the rock structure in two pieces.  Bummer at first but then I got thinking and decided to rearrange and make the best of it so that I could always remove the rock when I cleaned.  So, I have one large rock on the bottom to which I've now attached 4 types of macro algae that I bought as a nano pack on ebay which was quite cool.  $10.  Let me know if anyone wants the link.  It was packaged well and arrived quickly.  I then have the upper rock structure which is positioned to put the majority of the corals in the bowl (back of the skull head) which is the best viewing area.  I scrubbed the entire container, really stirred up the sand and did another 50% WC to make sure I was starting clean with this new 'scape.

 

The inverts continue to do well.  The blue hermit that I thought was dead must have just been hiding because he's been out/about regularly.  Mr. Pincers continues to do his job and the snail munches along.  Hair algae has been 90% eradicated.  Water is clear and I don't want to scream.  I am dosing .5 ml Continuum Bacter Clean M daily.  

 

11/25 FTS after all changes described above:

 

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