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Snow_Phoenix

Snow's Bedroom Nano - SPS Question

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Following... enjoying the posts so much that I burned dinner, ran through the house and set the dog to madly barking!

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So...I finally bought my bulb today! fingerscrossed

 

 

 

And my goodness, was it one heavy unit! Took less than a minute to fix it:

 

And presto!

 

 

Only one tiny problem - as the Insta post reads, the red LED was too strong and dominated over the other blue and white LEDs, although there was only *one red LED in the whole unit. It gave the tank an overall, furious 'reddish-brown' haze which I didn't like, and which actually made the bright green of my yuma, pagoda and goni look brownish and dull. Yuck.

 

So I put a small piece of black tape over the red LED bulb. The light is so friggin' strong that it actually shone THROUGH black tape. I mean, seriously. That's 36W of PAR38 for you, I guess. Anyhow, the 'red' color was muted by about 50% thanks to the tape, and the tank has an overall purplish-blue shimmer to it which I really, really like. My corals are still adjusting to the light. The goni was fluffy and spread out very well, but my softies didn't like the now-too-strong-light. Don't blame them - I just revved the lights up from 20W to 36W with an improved and more varied spectrum. Hmm.

 

If all things go well over the next few days/weeks, I *think* I might try and pick out a few more SPS frags. Just to give it a go. I've never ventured heavily into SPS as a rule because I love flowing/swishy coral compared to colored sticks, but I want to learn how to keep them for a change. I'll start with montis and acros, and work my way up. Tiny things, first. 

 

Oh, and tank is due for another WC, so hopefully my softies perk up soon. 

 

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Not reefing-related, but sometimes, I wish life had a major undo button. :tears:

 

 

My dog was the first one to find him dried up on the floor, outside his QT tank. Dog alerted mum, who alerted dad, who woke me up, but I was too late. As usual. I did everything I could to save him since the fungal outbreak and I did, and he was due to be released back into the DT next week. Somehow, he managed to throw off 2 bricks (each brick is 5kg) on his lid and slip out overnight, and stay on the tiles for God knows how long.

 

I tried dipping him back in the water, but after an hour and no gill movement, I was pretty sure he was a goner. Waited over a year to get him, spent a lot of time, effort and money in treating and quarantining him and now he's gone. R.I.P. big guy. :tears:

 

I can't even look at my other tanks - even the salty ones right now. 

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1 hour ago, Snow_Phoenix said:

Not reefing-related, but sometimes, I wish life had a major undo button. :tears:

 

 

My dog was the first one to find him dried up on the floor, outside his QT tank. Dog alerted mum, who alerted dad, who woke me up, but I was too late. As usual. I did everything I could to save him since the fungal outbreak and I did, and he was due to be released back into the DT next week. Somehow, he managed to throw off 2 bricks (each brick is 5kg) on his lid and slip out overnight, and stay on the tiles for God knows how long.

 

I tried dipping him back in the water, but after an hour and no gill movement, I was pretty sure he was a goner. Waited over a year to get him, spent a lot of time, effort and money in treating and quarantining him and now he's gone. R.I.P. big guy. :tears:

 

I can't even look at my other tanks - even the salty ones right now. 

 

This sucks. 😞

 

Dont beat yourself up. Who knew  he could be that strong!? That’s crazy. 

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6 minutes ago, WV Reefer said:

 

This sucks. 😞

 

Dont beat yourself up. Who knew  he could be that strong!? That’s crazy. 

I am actually quite emotional about this for some reason. My mother said the same thing - if it had to happen, it would have happened anyway. I'm still baffled over how a 2' ft long eel threw off a total of 10kg bricks pressed down on a thick plastic lid. He was very active last night - I did see him swimming out of his tube before the lights were turned off for the night. 

 

I still feel like I've failed deep down inside though. I did everything I could to save him - the fungus outbreak was difficult to tackle, and he actually made quite the comeback after losing a part of his tail. Perhaps it would have been better if I'd placed him back into the DT yesterday, but this wasn't something I could predict. Still feel like sh*t, though.

 

Took so long to secure a good fish for the tank - hate that he had to die this way, of all ways. 

I'll refocus my attention on my remaining tanks in the meantime. I still have 2 major FW and 2 salty systems up and running (discounting all the QTs). Maybe by rescaping and doing some WCs, it'll help take my mind off things for the time being. 

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Really sorry this happened... Don't beat yourself up... You do a lot for your animals...fish or otherwise.. More than most people here.

 

I pref flowy corals too and everything I look at my SPS tank I ask myself why I have it lol....I set it up for the same reason... Never did a heavy SPS tank and figured I needed that experience in my reef keeping career. I set up my 25g so I could get my flowy fix. 

 

Oh you have a 200 dollar acro... It's pretty and I like it but show me that heavy softy/lps tank and I drooool.. 

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2 hours ago, Tamberav said:

Really sorry this happened... Don't beat yourself up... You do a lot for your animals...fish or otherwise.. More than most people here.

 

I pref flowy corals too and everything I look at my SPS tank I ask myself why I have it lol....I set it up for the same reason... Never did a heavy SPS tank and figured I needed that experience in my reef keeping career. I set up my 25g so I could get my flowy fix. 

 

Oh you have a 200 dollar acro... It's pretty and I like it but show me that heavy softy/lps tank and I drooool.. 

Thanks, Tam. I'm still very down - definitely not a good way to start the morning, but what's done is done. No good will come out of crying any further. I swung by my LFS and took some time to stare at their display tanks instead. Kept a fake smile and cheery tone the whole way too. But seeing the fish genuinely made me happy for a moment. There's always something in watching the graceful movements of fish swimming through water that gets to me. I get a lot of peace from it.

 

Oh, and I definitely prefer softy/LPS-heavy tanks over SPS-tanks. Flow is one thing, but I like the different shapes and odd colors too. 

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Something interesting at the LFS that has been there for a week. Wish I had a predator setup because he would have made a good candidate:

 

1. Leaf fish.

 

 

 

2. Thanos is doing very well. Getting a little too paunchy too. 

 

 

 

3. I love Houdini's markings. He's also maxed out in size. And turns 1-year-old this Nov.

 

 

 

4. Here are the three of them. They do have a territorial dispute every now and then, but still cling on to each other under the same rock, at the same space. The pistol accepts whoever who comes into her burrows though - also caught her sneakily grabbing a pellet yesterday, so I know she's well-fed. Still no sign of Ben the Dartfish. It's been over a month, and I personally think he has perished weeks ago and was eaten by the Pistol. 

 

 

The PAR 38 bulb is excellent for this tank - I'm actually very, very satisfied with it. I didn't get a chance to do a WC yesterday, but I'll try to perform one either today or tomorrow. That, and smother my brown palys with super glue.

 

And, tiny confession - I went window shopping at the LFS yesterday. Plastered a fake smile and cheery tone the whole way although I felt half-dead on the inside after losing my eel. One of the workers must have sensed something off with me - because we've been friends for six years now, so she let me hold a few rare Bali starfish for a while in her display tank. That did cheer me up a bit. That, and seeing all the various fish on display. It was a rainbow of color, and I, er, came back with something - one tiny thing, which on hindsight, makes this tank even more heavily overstocked than before. It was a dusky brotulid. Small, around 2". Looks like a cross between a mini ghost knifefish and eel - very cryptic.

 

I spoke to my mother about upgrading the tank to provide more room for my fish and to grow out more corals. As long as the tank stays in my bedroom and occupies the same spot it does now, she doesn't see much of a problem. I'm planning on purchasing a second PAR 38 bulb and holder - I'm tentatively thinking of either going for a 50G+ cube or long, depending on which footprint will fit my bedroom better. It's a big jump and a big project - so I'm working my way on accumulating more finances at the moment. It'll probably take months to come into full affect though, because I want to do it right and not stinge on the equipment or even glass. 

 

I want a proper sump this time to give extra volume and grow out macro (which Thanos won't get into and eat). Still all in planning stages. Will take some time, and careful preparation and planning. I'm doing this for the sake of my fish, and especially for Thanos, since he is a fairly large blenny and I feel he deserves a bigger tank/more room. 

 

Once the bigger build is here, this 20G *might be shifted downstairs, where hopefully it'll house my crazy clownfish-hawkfish duo. 

 

So right now, this tank houses approximately 6 to 7 fish (if Ben is still miraculously surviving) - 2 Hi-Fins, 1 Starry Blenny, 1 Ornate Leopard Wrasse, 1 Dusky Brotulid &1 Warpaint/Green Clown Goby (K.I.V. 1 Green Scissortail Dartfish). No algae issues so far. I find that performing large WCs helps a lot, and of course doing routine maintenance like basting gunk off rocks, stirring the sandbed and scraping the glass. I also keep a very short light schedule of 6 to 8 hours. The heaviest bioload comes from Thanos due to his appetite and the size of his droppings. Sometimes, I manually use a baster to siphon out his droppings when I see him pooping (sounds gross, but I figured less nitrates).

 

The only thing I struggle with is keeping the different types of corals satisfied with the current levels I have. My LPS and one of my SPS pieces are doing very well and growing out very well. My softies throw hissy fits from time to time. Mushrooms and zoas are also growing in size and number. I'm confused, if not a little bit concerned. I stopped dosing liquid foods once I found out this bumps up my nitrates too much. So I target feed Reef Roids once a week. Reduced frozen feedings to once a week as well. I mostly feed dry pellets and flakes for the fish, twice a day. Hmm. It's all a matter of balance, and I'm still getting there.

 

Will post a pic/vid of the brotulid later. He truly is a unique fish - reminds me of a pinto knifefish setup I did for a customer once several years back. Very intriguing. LFS was eager to get rid of him though. Claims the fish was too weird - I think it creeped one of the workers out. I think he's gorgeous, though and deserves a fair shot at survival. 

 

 

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Cool addition, wonder how cryptic he will be. Most of your fish have smaller bioloads... except Thanos ofc lol Fun upgrade, especially since sounds like you get to keep the 20g running, everytime I upgrade, I end up downgrading again.. lol 

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49 minutes ago, Tamberav said:

Cool addition, wonder how cryptic he will be. Most of your fish have smaller bioloads... except Thanos ofc lol Fun upgrade, especially since sounds like you get to keep the 20g running, everytime I upgrade, I end up downgrading again.. lol 

I used to do that a lot - upgrade/downgrade/upgrade etc. It was a non-stop cycle which was costly, and not too mention probably very confusing for my fish lol. Yes, Thanos is the only one with a very heavy bioload - I'll equate him to have a very large clownfish in the tank. He's basically a poop machine. Ah, bless him. But I love him. He's a huge, purple goofball. 

 

Brotulid has already moved on to his cryptic ways but I think I caught him shimmying behind my filter intake. Not sure, but there's very little information on this fish species online. Most reefers equate adding a brotulid to a reef as adding 'nothing' because you'll never see it again.

 

I did manage to get some good footage of the fish swimming around for a fair bit before it 'vanished'. I'll link the pics and vids to this thread in a short while. 

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Dusky Brotulid:

 

 

 

Thanos meeting the brotulid for the first time last night:

 

 

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I really enjoy your threads so I’m following this one too - I’ve also followed your Instagram, i hope you don’t mind, there’s so many great pictures on there!

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lol that part with Thanos was funny... eyeballing the new guy. 

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1 hour ago, MrsPeet15 said:

I really enjoy your threads so I’m following this one too - I’ve also followed your Instagram, i hope you don’t mind, there’s so many great pictures on there!

Glad you're enjoying them. And no, I don't mind. 🙂

1 hour ago, Tamberav said:

lol that part with Thanos was funny... eyeballing the new guy. 

He eyeballs anything I put in there - even coral lol. If he deems them worthy, they stay. Otherwise he'll keep glaring at it and give me the stink-eye from across the room. :lol:

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I fed the tank some flakes earlier but I'm not too happy about it. The flakes were a bit mushy and moist, which is weird - now I'm worried they *might have gone bad somehow after being exposed to water (?). Couldn't do a WC today because I spent the evening scrubbing the eel QT - the water fouled up overnight and there was a layer of slime on the surface, and I had to sterilize everything using boiling water and do a deep scrub with a lot of soap.

 

Anyhow, back to the nano - I'm hoping the mushy flakes won't cause any problems overnight. Shall throw away the entire container? Is the food even usable? I have Hikari and NLS pellets, so I still have dry food to feed my fish - no worries there. Just worried - I don't want to lose anything in this tank, I love every aspect of it (except for the shitty brown Palys which are attempting a hostile takeover). :scarry:

 

At least my fish seem to be doing alright for the moment:

 

1. Thanos the Blenny & Houdini the Hi-Fin:

 

 

2. Goblin, the Warpaint Goby - still sneaking around. Proud to say he's fully on pellets now. As long as I can find him during feeding hours, I can target feed him:

 

 

Also found my Brotulid again! He's favored the spot directly behind my filter sponge inlet. Despite being yellow, he's so well-hidden that he's almost impossible to see. I'm not sure if he ate anything today, but I might baste some pellets in his direction tomorrow if he's still hanging out there. According to the very limited info I've found on these guys, they love small and dark spaces, and are nocturnal. Well, hopefully I do get to see him again sometime in full. 

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I wouldn't worry about what you fed if they haven't been wet long. I would toss them if it were me though as I would think wet flakes = grow mold.

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9 minutes ago, Tamberav said:

I wouldn't worry about what you fed if they haven't been wet long. I would toss them if it were me though as I would think wet flakes = grow mold.

I'm binning them. Shame though. Wonder how they even got wet in the first place - I haven't even opened the container for almost a week now. 

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1. Performed routine maintenance and WC yesterday using Fritz salt for the first time. Was very pleased with how quickly the salt dissolved in the water, and how good the levels were after mixing:

 

 

2. Here was the tank prior to the WC. You can see how 'unhappy' some of my corals were due to the delay in WC by a few days:

 

 

3. And here came the troublesome Palys which I managed to eradicate. The polyps which were on the frag plug were easily removed because all I did was twist the frag plug and everything came off. The problem was the one lone polyp (with two tiny upcoming heads) that anchored itself to my base rock. I managed to smother that polyp with super glue and yes, I wore protective gear the whole time:

 

 

 

Despite taking all the necessary precautions, I developed dizziness, nausea and a very bad headache within the first hour of removing the Palys. I also had a mild running nose, but the nausea and headache was very, very bad so I told my father, who is a doctor, that I *might have somehow been poisoned. He monitored me and gave me some meds, and I slept off for 11 hours+. My mother came over to check up on me several times throughout the night, she was quite worried and I feel rotten for having my family worry over me like that. 

 

After meds + prolonged rest, all symptoms have vanished and I feel a bit drained but otherwise alright. So yeah, Palys. I'm actually rethinking of making a zoa garden now unless it's the standard/common zoas like eagle eyes, radioactive greens etc. Will definitely be more cautious in the future.

 

As for the tank itself, I did a headcount and everyone seems to be alright. The only fish missing is my wrasse, but he's a late-riser (I'm hoping I didn't squish him somehow because I had to lift the base rock up to apply the super glue, and he darted right into my sandbed to hide (somewhere in the tank)). My blue digi also isn't faring well, but that piece has been STNing for the past few days so I think it's unrelated to whatever that happened yesterday evening. All other fish and livestock seem to be ok. Am running extra carbon atm, and started wet skimming today morning. 

 

I also did a larger-than-usual WC this time around when I removed the Palys - I did a 75% WC. It did stress out my cup coral for a while, but I siphoned out any excess mucus and the coral seems to be back to normal today. Will monitor the tank now - just hoping my wrasse would pop up soon because I am worried for him. 

 

EDIT: Just spotted my wrasse. He's cruising up and down the tank, hunting for pods and bristleworms. 🙂

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Glad you are okay... I do stupid stuff like frag plays with bare hands and it makes me feel weird... Headache and a bit off or numb skin where they touched... Nothing as bad as yours though but I hear the brown invasive palys are the worst for toxin. M

 

Make sure that they are not rotting in your garbage inside the house. They go to the outside trash asap.. I double bag them. 

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3 minutes ago, Tamberav said:

Glad you are okay... I do stupid stuff like frag plays with bare hands and it makes me feel weird... Headache and a bit off or numb skin where they touched... Nothing as bad as yours though but I hear the brown invasive palys are the worst for toxin. M

 

Make sure that they are not rotting in your garbage inside the house. They go to the outside trash asap.. I double bag them. 

I triple-bagged it and threw it in the main disposal bin outside my house. Thank goodness all symptoms vanished within 12+ hours. My greatest fear was that this would somehow offset my epilepsy and trigger multiple seizures. Really don't fancy a trip to the ER in any case. But I'll be more careful when dealing with any coral from here on out. 

 

I'm just glad all my livestock is fine. (Well, except my blue digi, which is still throwing a hissy fit.) 

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1. Thanos, being his usual giant-Overlord-self. I thought of putting him on a diet, but then I felt bad:

 

2. Green goni swaying gently in the flow:

 

 

 

3. Green Cup Coral under new light:

 

 

4. Goblin. He is still very shy when I broadcast pellets in my system, so I do have to swish the pellets at the surface using a small satay stick so that some of the food would fall near him. He usually grabs one pellet at a time, swims off and hides, then pops back up and waits for another pellet 'shower'. Cute guy.

 

 

5. One of my douchebags finally doing his rightful job:

 

 

 

6. Involuntary urchin backpack, anyone? :lol:

 

 

Also saw my brotulid again - he's slipped behind my fugebox this time, although he hovers near the filter intake from time to time. I'm thinking of naming him 'Ghost' since he pretty much doesn't 'exist' in the tank. I'm still trying to find a good name for my wrasse. Torn between naming him 'Leo' (short for 'Leonardo') or 'Chili' (because of his bright red accents at the fins). 🤔

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I love seeing a well nourished fish.  Thanos doesn't need to be on a diet in my opinion.  The fish in the ocean are pretty chubby.  My son made fun of my royal gramma for being overfed.  Ha ha, when I got the ponies and KB snapped at one of them I gave him to my son.  Guess what, he is still pleasingly plump. He is not a young fish now so it hasn't hurt him any.

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4 hours ago, vlangel said:

I love seeing a well nourished fish.  Thanos doesn't need to be on a diet in my opinion.  The fish in the ocean are pretty chubby.  My son made fun of my royal gramma for being overfed.  Ha ha, when I got the ponies and KB snapped at one of them I gave him to my son.  Guess what, he is still pleasingly plump. He is not a young fish now so it hasn't hurt him any.

I suppose plump fish = healthy fish, as you've mentioned. I admire your pony tank, btw. Takes a lot of time, patience and dedication to keep such a system going long-term. I've only tried to keep dragonface pipes once, and even then I struggled. Not easy trying to make sure they are well-fed and don't accidently fall sick along the way. 

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