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Snow's 60G Marine Megano - Mandarin Eating Pellets!

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Snow_Phoenix

Picked up a new box of salt yesterday:

 

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My clownfish, Nero & Sushi:

 

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Nero:

 

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Goblin:

 

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Yawning:

 

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Shrooms! 😊

 

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Growing:

 

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Thanos looking elegant: 🤣

 

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Snow_Phoenix

Quick update about yesterday:

 

I picked up a new box of salt, which I requested to be individually bagged up in 5kg bags by my primary LFS. Bumped into a really nice local reefer, who's sort-of a friend so far, and we chatted for a bit about a couple of interesting things. He runs a very large frag tank, and was looking into some LPS. I was mostly trying to haul the salt-bags out of the door and to my car with the help of one of my worker-friends, and left a bit early because it was starting to rain. 

 

Fast-forward to today:

 

I went to my secondary LFS and picked up a small green leptastrea frag that has a small bald spot on it:

 

It was a toss-up between this frag and the slightly more expensive red ones, or the common orange ones. Since I have a bright orange coral (the leptoseris), I wanted something different and affordable for a change. I also saw a few bright purple gorgs for sale, including this super-large gorg:

 

But I refrained. Mainly because I have put down a deposit for a neon green frogspawn frag at my primary LFS, and also reserved a common green mini maxi carpet nem at that store as well. Until I pay those coral/nem off, I'm holding back on purchasing anything large or expensive. Still scouring the discount racks for something interesting - but I'm mainly waiting for some softies to come back. People prefer sticks here over softies, but I love softies. They're easy to keep and grow quickly too. :happy:

 

I managed to capture a few interesting things today:

 

Like Tic, my zebra-barred dartfish out in the open (for some reason, I have a lot of difficulty focusing on him, even when he hovers and doesn't dart away - it's like my camera can't focus on his stripes, so the shots either come out blurry/awful, or his colors are all messed up):

 

Found Casper with his little potbelly hanging out near his burrow - am thinking of pairing him up with a new Pistol shrimp, if I can find/purchase the shrimp separately (they usually come in as a pair with a Hi-Fin goby):

 

Caught Prowler dashing out into the open for some pellets - and yes, he does swim upside-down/diagonally most of the time:

 

Miu still has her 'sting' spots, which I don't think are going away anytime soon. 😞

 

Thankfully, she's still eating and swimming normally:

 

The leptoseris & galaxea are growing quicker than I expected. I'm keeping daily tabs on them, and I swear they're either encrusting/fanning out a *tiny bit more day by day:

 

There are a few new 'baby' polyps in the red PE colony. Nothing too big, but I like that they're growing:

 

Close-ups of a few inverts in my tank:

 

Okay, so here's a recurring issue that I'm currently facing with my shrooms. The dreaded red flatworms!

 

I have four different type of wrasses and I can't believe I'm still plagued by these guys. So far they've been irritating some of my shrooms to the point that the corals close up, nothing more. Looks like I'll have to manually remove them using a baster. 😞

 

Speaking of wrasses, my leopard wrasse finally (!) took a few bites of Hikari Marine S pellets today. He's lost a bit of weight, and didn't come out of the sandbed for a full day yesterday, and I was quite worried that he had died while being buried. But he popped up today morning, and was brave enough to try a few pellets in the afternoon, which is a huge step, because he's pretty much rejected all attempts of frozen and prepared before this. I'm hoping he'll keep eating pellets over the next few days, and slowly accept mysis and brine as well. 

 

I'm not even sure why he suddenly decided to try pellets today. It's like he woke up one day, a new fish turned over a new leaf, and decided to try something new. I did notice he was eyeballing all my other fish as he ate - like he was copying (?) them? --> Like, 'You eat, so I eat too.' kind of scenario. Whatever it is, I hope he beefs up again. The greatest issue with wild-caught fish has always been the parasites they come with, but the secondary issue is always getting them to accept prepared food. It's exceptionally tricky with wrasses here, especially since most of them die in QT during/before treatment with meds. 

 

I'm honestly quite lucky my other three wrasses have no feeding issues so far. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Snow_Phoenix

View from my bed this morning: :happy:

 

 

 

Close up of the new green leptastrea I purchased yesterday (take note of the bald spot in the middle):

 

Symphyllia looking particularly hungry today:

 

Miko snacking on some NLS pellets over my cynarina: :wub:

 

Toadstool looking fab. today:

 

One of my Steinitz gobies, Odin:

 

Pom pom xenia slowly pulsing again: :happy:

 

Tales from the Fuge today:

 

Prince:

 

Lady:

 

They do make a lovely couple:

 

Feeding today:

 

My Yasha isn't doing too well, unfortunately. Back to being paper-thin and now refusing to eat. :sad:

 

Not sure what I can do to make this fish eat. Even my Leopard is a handful, but at least he's slowly adapting to the tank. 

 

On a non-reef-related note, my oldest FW leopard eel, which turns 4-years-old this June, has developed a growth of some sort (suspected tumor) near his neck. He can still swim and eat, but the front of his body is kinked a little due to the bulge. I consulted more experienced local fishkeepers and they told me to provide the best care for him until the end of his days. I did debate bringing him to the vet, but I'm not sure if my exotic vet treats spiny eels, or if anything can be done. 😞

 

I also lost a 3-year-old torpedo barb yesterday as well. My father suggested old age, but I was hoping to have another 3 to 4 years more with him. The other 3 torpedo barbs & 2 puntius barbs are all maxed out in size and still doing okay though. Thinking of trimming down my fish stock. Might try rearing juvi discus again. 

 

 

 

 

 

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WV Reefer
2 hours ago, Snow_Phoenix said:

View from my bed this morning: :happy:

 

 

 

Close up of the new green leptastrea I purchased yesterday (take note of the bald spot in the middle):

 

Symphyllia looking particularly hungry today:

 

Miko snacking on some NLS pellets over my cynarina: :wub:

 

Toadstool looking fab. today:

 

One of my Steinitz gobies, Odin:

 

Pom pom xenia slowly pulsing again: :happy:

 

Tales from the Fuge today:

 

Prince:

 

Lady:

 

They do make a lovely couple:

 

Feeding today:

 

My Yasha isn't doing too well, unfortunately. Back to being paper-thin and now refusing to eat. :sad:

 

Not sure what I can do to make this fish eat. Even my Leopard is a handful, but at least he's slowly adapting to the tank. 

 

On a non-reef-related note, my oldest FW leopard eel, which turns 4-years-old this June, has developed a growth of some sort (suspected tumor) near his neck. He can still swim and eat, but the front of his body is kinked a little due to the bulge. I consulted more experienced local fishkeepers and they told me to provide the best care for him until the end of his days. I did debate bringing him to the vet, but I'm not sure if my exotic vet treats spiny eels, or if anything can be done. 😞

 

I also lost a 3-year-old torpedo barb yesterday as well. My father suggested old age, but I was hoping to have another 3 to 4 years more with him. The other 3 torpedo barbs & 2 puntius barbs are all maxed out in size and still doing okay though. Thinking of trimming down my fish stock. Might try rearing juvi discus again. 

 

 

 

 

 

Sorry to hear about the eel. 🙁

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Snow_Phoenix

I woke up today to a dead, half-eaten Yasha, which was quite frankly heartbreaking: :tears:

 

One very valuable lesson I learnt today was that sometimes, some fish are beyond help once they reach a certain point of starvation/emaciation. When I picked up my Yasha, she was paper-thin - as in literally two-dimensional. She improved a *bit for a while, but very quickly slipped back into her state of emaciation despite being fed everything I have from the fish cupboard & freezer. I loved this little fish. She had so much spunk in her, and gave no quarter to any of my other fish in the tank, even though most of them were 5x larger than her. But I just couldn't save her. I tried, failed, tried again - I'm not sure what else I could have done. 

 

Most folks would suggest picking up a healthy, fat fish from the store in the first place, but I took this one home because tbh, she was at the store for ~1 month and no one wanted her. She was expensive for such a tiny, skinny thing too, which didn't help. R.I.P. Rose. You'll never be forgotten. 😞

 

Despite the loss however, the rest of the tank is still chugging on.

 

I have Thanos looking as handsome as always:

 

 

And Nero, who has grown so much from the tiny, fingernail-sized baby clown I bought in Dec 2018:

 

And of course, Goblin, who exceeded all expectations for his size and is still very healthy/active in the tank:

 

I'm now focusing my efforts on my Leopard, to make sure he doesn't go down the same path as my Yasha did:

 

Although with wrasses, one could never be too careful. 

 

Managed to take a few snapshots of a few corals today as well:

 

 

This brings my fish count down to 17. Still a very overstocked tank, but having 2 losses within the span of a month is quite devastating. 😞

 

I don't think I'll invest in any expensive livestock (with regards to fish) in the future. Not only talking about the heartache, but the big ouch! in the wallet too. I'll be focusing more nurturing what I currently have, and will still try to collect any interesting frags or small colonies along the way. I overexceeded my budget for Dec. Quite frankly, I went way overboard. LFS is happy with all my purchases, and in a way, so am I, but looking back - it probably wasn't wise to sink in so much money at the store all at once. 

 

I also need to reglue my John Deere leptastrea and one of my mushrooms back to their respective rocks. I'm still having an issue with red flatworms, but I found both my Leopard & yellow coris actually working together to clear mushroom mountain of them. Only problem is the fish don't pick off the worms which are on the surfaces on the mushrooms themselves, only the worms found on the rocks. Thankfully the pest population is still under control (for now). 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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WV Reefer
5 minutes ago, Snow_Phoenix said:

I woke up today to a dead, half-eaten Yasha, which was quite frankly heartbreaking: :tears:

 

One very valuable lesson I learnt today was that sometimes, some fish are beyond help once they reach a certain point of starvation/emaciation. When I picked up my Yasha, she was paper-thin - as in literally two-dimensional. She improved a *bit for a while, but very quickly slipped back into her state of emaciation despite being fed everything I have from the fish cupboard & freezer. I loved this little fish. She had so much spunk in her, and gave no quarter to any of my other fish in the tank, even though most of them were 5x larger than her. But I just couldn't save her. I tried, failed, tried again - I'm not sure what else I could have done. 

 

Most folks would suggest picking up a healthy, fat fish from the store in the first place, but I took this one home because tbh, she was at the store for ~1 month and no one wanted her. She was expensive for such a tiny, skinny thing too, which didn't help. R.I.P. Rose. You'll never be forgotten. 😞

 

Despite the loss however, the rest of the tank is still chugging on.

 

I have Thanos looking as handsome as always:

 

 

And Nero, who has grown so much from the tiny, fingernail-sized baby clown I bought in Dec 2018:

 

And of course, Goblin, who exceeded all expectations for his size and is still very healthy/active in the tank:

 

I'm now focusing my efforts on my Leopard, to make sure he doesn't go down the same path as my Yasha did:

 

Although with wrasses, one could never be too careful. 

 

Managed to take a few snapshots of a few corals today as well:

 

 

This brings my fish count down to 17. Still a very overstocked tank, but having 2 losses within the span of a month is quite devastating. 😞

 

I don't think I'll invest in any expensive livestock (with regards to fish) in the future. Not only talking about the heartache, but the big ouch! in the wallet too. I'll be focusing more nurturing what I currently have, and will still try to collect any interesting frags or small colonies along the way. I overexceeded my budget for Dec. Quite frankly, I went way overboard. LFS is happy with all my purchases, and in a way, so am I, but looking back - it probably wasn't wise to sink in so much money at the store all at once. 

 

I also need to reglue my John Deere leptastrea and one of my mushrooms back to their respective rocks. I'm still having an issue with red flatworms, but I found both my Leopard & yellow coris actually working together to clear mushroom mountain of them. Only problem is the fish don't pick off the worms which are on the surfaces on the mushrooms themselves, only the worms found on the rocks. Thankfully the pest population is still under control (for now). 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sorry about the Yasha....... it wasn’t for lack of trying. 

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Battling a really nasty headache. Not much to update - but I took a late-evening video and pics of the tank:

 

 

Also checked up on the fuge, and everything seems to be okay in there too:

 

(Check out how Lady 'rolls over' to snick pods from the water column):

 

Together:

 

And this is how they 'rest':

 

I noticed they kept brushing each other's bodies together and followed each other around the fuge when I switched on the lights. Not sure why, or if they're trying to spawn (if this is even a precursor to spawning), but I'm just glad they're doing alright. 

 

I also re-attached my leptastrea to the rock. I used to coral cutters to gently pry it off the frag plug and glue it directly to the LR because I figured it'll be easier for the coral to encrust this way. Also managed to reglue the frag my fallen shroom was on, back to mushroom mountain. And my Leopard wrasse finally showed more interest in food today and took a few pecks of frozen pods and NLS pellets. He still has a long way to go though. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Mostly fishy pics today:

 

My leopard wrasse finally began eating frozen today. I noticed he was very, very picky over which pieces of mysis or brine he eats - he'd only pick the tiniest pieces (which are more coral-food-sized than fish-food-sized) and eyeballs every single piece before he slurps it down. Talk about finicky! 🙄

 

I'm also thinking of adding more Yumas to the Yuma bridge. Mostly trying to pick up leftover yumas that the LFS doesn't want/wants to get rid of. Trying to score a neon pink one, but it's proving to be tricky because those are classified as 'premium' shrooms and are quite expensive:

 

Still can't get a clear shot of this thing - but it's growing quick. I'm thinking of trimming off the excess glue at the base with the coral cutters and re-gluing it to the rock, as I did for my leptastrea:

 

Corals/Nems to come:

 

-Neon green frogspawn

-Common green mini maxi nem

-Purple Gorg (*maybe)

-Rainbow open brain (*maybe --> quite expensive and is premium, will probably take a full month or more to pay off, if I acquire it)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Well, had a bit of a rough start today. For starters, I found Prince, my male banded pipefish in the sump compartment that houses Derp the hermit:

 

Generally a big 'aiyiyi' moment for me. :scarry:

 

Mainly because hermits can attack pipefish, and Derp isn't exactly the model citizen. Managed to scoop up my pipefish with one hand and put him back in the fuge - I noticed Lady was fretting over him a lot while he was stuck in the wrong compartment. She kept pacing-swimming the glass that separates the two of them, but calmed down the moment I re-introduced him back into the fuge. He was moody and sulky the whole day though - made a show of swimming off into the filter compartment during feeding time, then swam back into the fuge at the last moment to snick some pods. Ugh. Drama King. 🙄

 

Found this really cute tiny snail on one of the macro stalks in the fuge - I *think it's a baby turbo, but I'm not sure:

 

Good ol' bristleworm was up and about:

 

Bristleworms used to creep me out a lot. But that was before I found out they're excellent detritivores, which makes them good CUC members, and are pretty much natural animals/hitchikers in the reef. I have a couple in my refugium and they don't bother anything, and clean up any leftover frozen pods that sink to the bottom of the tank. I used to have a bunch in my DT as well, but after adding 4 wrasses, I can't find them anymore - so I presume they get eaten by the fish. 

 

Also got this snapshot of Lady going in for the kill:

 

And for the first time ever, I sort-of semi-crawled into my sump cabinet and took this top-shot of Lady. Everything looks dark/gloomy from above, which is strange, because my light is shining directly on the macro. I guess a sideview will always be better? 🤔

 

Also, I caught this rare pic of Helios - he never sits still, and for some reason, he was hovering over the rocks for a heartbeat and I managed to get a clear pic of him! 😄

 

 

My camera has a hard time focusing on anything pink. For example, I tried my best to get a good shot of Bo, my Lubbocks, but it still came out a bit blurry. He's grown 'longer' but not rounder. He eats anything I throw into the tank though:

 

Miu, as adorable as always:

 

If you look very closely, all four of my wrasses are in this pic. (Helios has only a tiny part of him revealed though):

 

And this is currently the fastest growing coral I have in the tank. Even beats out the red monti and blastos:

 

And lastly, Phoenix says hello! :wub:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Dirté Sanchez
1 hour ago, Snow_Phoenix said:

Well, had a bit of a rough start today. For starters, I found Prince, my male banded pipefish in the sump compartment that houses Derp the hermit:

 

Generally a big 'aiyiyi' moment for me. :scarry:

 

Mainly because hermits can attack pipefish, and Derp isn't exactly the model citizen. Managed to scoop up my pipefish with one hand and put him back in the fuge - I noticed Lady was fretting over him a lot while he was stuck in the wrong compartment. She kept pacing-swimming the glass that separates the two of them, but calmed down the moment I re-introduced him back into the fuge. He was moody and sulky the whole day though - made a show of swimming off into the filter compartment during feeding time, then swam back into the fuge at the last moment to snick some pods. Ugh. Drama King. 🙄

 

Found this really cute tiny snail on one of the macro stalks in the fuge - I *think it's a baby turbo, but I'm not sure:

 

Good ol' bristleworm was up and about:

 

Bristleworms used to creep me out a lot. But that was before I found out they're excellent detritivores, which makes them good CUC members, and are pretty much natural animals/hitchikers in the reef. I have a couple in my refugium and they don't bother anything, and clean up any leftover frozen pods that sink to the bottom of the tank. I used to have a bunch in my DT as well, but after adding 4 wrasses, I can't find them anymore - so I presume they get eaten by the fish. 

 

Also got this snapshot of Lady going in for the kill:

 

And for the first time ever, I sort-of semi-crawled into my sump cabinet and took this top-shot of Lady. Everything looks dark/gloomy from above, which is strange, because my light is shining directly on the macro. I guess a sideview will always be better? 🤔

 

Also, I caught this rare pic of Helios - he never sits still, and for some reason, he was hovering over the rocks for a heartbeat and I managed to get a clear pic of him! 😄

 

 

My camera has a hard time focusing on anything pink. For example, I tried my best to get a good shot of Bo, my Lubbocks, but it still came out a bit blurry. He's grown 'longer' but not rounder. He eats anything I throw into the tank though:

 

Miu, as adorable as always:

 

If you look very closely, all four of my wrasses are in this pic. (Helios has only a tiny part of him revealed though):

 

And this is currently the fastest growing coral I have in the tank. Even beats out the red monti and blastos:

 

And lastly, Phoenix says hello! :wub:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The conure is gorgeous and you can see his personality in that face!! 

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Amphrites

You could try setting a manual focus distance and waiting for the fish to swim into it -as opposed to trying to get the camera to focus, on the fly, onto your pinker fish.

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Snow_Phoenix
10 hours ago, Amphrites said:

You could try setting a manual focus distance and waiting for the fish to swim into it -as opposed to trying to get the camera to focus, on the fly, onto your pinker fish.

I will try that - although I'm not exactly sure how to use manual focus distance using my phone. (The camera I use is my phone's camera - I currently don't have a separate camera for taking pics)

 

I did try taking pics of my pink streaked wrasse today morning. She only goes out of focus beyond a certain distance, but if she is close enough to the glass/camera, I can get a decent shot. 

 

Still can't focus on my Lubbocks though.

10 hours ago, Dirté Sanchez said:

The conure is gorgeous and you can see his personality in that face!! 

Thank you! And yep, he has tons of personality. 😊

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So there is a little bit of a growth hitting some of my corals of late - not everything is growing at the same pace, and in the case of the zoas, some frags appear to be not growing at all. But my SPS is growing out (slowly, but steadily) and a few of the softies and LPS are perking up too. 

 

This doesn't mean the tank is absent of issues. I'm still facing a long-standing battle involving my older elegance and my two frogspawns, which are neither improving nor retracting atm. Whatever's going on between those three pieces, it seems confined to them only, and I'm thankful my other corals aren't affected by it. 

 

Today will be mostly a fishy-update. Lots of pics and vids ahead:

 

So much activity in the upper water column before the evening feeding session. So much motion. I love it. :wub:

 

I was planning on visiting the LFS today morning to pick up my new frogspawn and put down a deposit for my mini maxi nem, but work got in the way. So I'll try to swing by tomorrow. And also maybe try to haggle for a rainbow brain (don't think I'll be successful, but it's worth a shot). 

 

There are actually quite a number of 'gaps'/empty spaces between my frags on the major LR centerpiece. I think I'll slowly fill up some of the gaps with more frags, but leave enough room for the corals to grow. 🤔

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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So today turned out to be a relatively interesting day. For starters, I dropped by the LFS to pick up my neon green frogspawn --> was super excited about this...until I looked at the racks and It. Wasn't. There. (!!!) :scarry:

 

I remember the girls telling me they put my frogspawn on their hammer coral rack so that they'd know which one I picked and purchased. I didn't panic at first, because I thought they simply moved my coral back to the frogspawn rack and it was lumped between all the paler green frogspawns. 

 

Then, one of the girls apologized profusely and told me the whole story. A Vietnamese reefer bought my coral and took it back with him. As in, the dude literally bagged up a shit ton of LPS, my frogspawn included, and is now back in Vietnam. Turns out they kept the store open at 2am for this customer because he had a morning flight to catch at 6am, and he wanted to buy a *lot of corals. Two people were manning the shop at 2am - my LFS manager (who had no idea that neon green frogspawn was mine) and my worker-friend, who did know the frogspawn was mine, but was extremely tired and sleepy after working a full day at the store, and had to keep it open for this customer.

 

The customer took it upon himself to not only select the corals he wanted,  but to bag them up as well. He was *told to take frogspawns from the frogspawn rack. Did he listen? Nope. He took my frogspawn, and in the ensuing mix-up, (because he purchased so many pieces) and the general 'let's-get-this-over-and-done-with-so-that-we-could-all-go-home-already', the shop didn't check which corals from which racks he bought, and just wished him well and closed shop. 

 

The following day, they had a 'Oh Shit' moment when they realized the one and only frogspawn in the hammer rack was missing. Ordinarily, if the customer was local and well-known by the store, the store could contact the customer to arrange for an exchange of some sort for the mix-up. Problem is, this was an overseas customer so there's no way to track him down, let alone contact him. And I doubt you could magically ship one coral back here without the necessary permits or licenses.

 

They apologized - a lot. And in a strange twist of fate, they offered me a rainbow brain coral as compensation - something that I was eyeing on, but thought on passing up because it was too expensive and way out of my budget. I didn't get it for free - I just got it for the same price as my frogspawn (which was still way lesser than what the coral was worth). So from losing something I really liked, I ended up getting something I liked even more. Weird and strange, but I'll accept it. :biggrin:

 

I had the choice of choosing any one brains from this pile of reef candy:

 

I picked a small one, because I don't have room on the sandbed to host a large one. So here's my new tiny rainbow brain:

 

Cute and colorful. :wub:

 

I also decided to pick up my mini maxi nem today. Got this one:

 

From this pile here at the LFS:

 

And to top-off an already good day, there was a tiny 3" crocea clam at the store - a gift to the LFS which was FOC. Store didn't know how much it's worth, and quite frankly, neither did I, but we settled for a very cheap price and I came home with it:

 

So far I haven't seen any of my fish or shrimp pick at it. Even my blennies ignore it (for now), which is good. I'm already dosing Calcium every other day, so I'll measure the tank's Ca levels and up my dosing. Will also need to supplement this little guy with some phyto/zoo mix daily until it grows larger. I currently have it on my centerpiece rock, so that it gets enough light. So far the mantle's extended, and it appears happy, so I'm cool with it. 

 

So now...the only thing to make this a true mixed reef is to add a NPS of some sort - preferably a gorg. My initial plans of acquiring a large purple gorg. fell through for personal reasons, but my secondary LFS has frags of a newly arrived gorgs, so I might look into getting a tiny one in the future.

 

Otherwise, I have my eye set on a neon pink yuma at my primary LFS, which I intend to pick up next month. 🙂 

 

 

 

 

 

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2 hours ago, Snow_Phoenix said:

So today turned out to be a relatively interesting day. For starters, I dropped by the LFS to pick up my neon green frogspawn --> was super excited about this...until I looked at the racks and It. Wasn't. There. (!!!) :scarry:

 

I remember the girls telling me they put my frogspawn on their hammer coral rack so that they'd know which one I picked and purchased. I didn't panic at first, because I thought they simply moved my coral back to the frogspawn rack and it was lumped between all the paler green frogspawns. 

 

Then, one of the girls apologized profusely and told me the whole story. A Vietnamese reefer bought my coral and took it back with him. As in, the dude literally bagged up a shit ton of LPS, my frogspawn included, and is now back in Vietnam. Turns out they kept the store open at 2am for this customer because he had a morning flight to catch at 6am, and he wanted to buy a *lot of corals. Two people were manning the shop at 2am - my LFS manager (who had no idea that neon green frogspawn was mine) and my worker-friend, who did know the frogspawn was mine, but was extremely tired and sleepy after working a full day at the store, and had to keep it open for this customer.

 

The customer took it upon himself to not only select the corals he wanted,  but to bag them up as well. He was *told to take frogspawns from the frogspawn rack. Did he listen? Nope. He took my frogspawn, and in the ensuing mix-up, (because he purchased so many pieces) and the general 'let's-get-this-over-and-done-with-so-that-we-could-all-go-home-already', the shop didn't check which corals from which racks he bought, and just wished him well and closed shop. 

 

The following day, they had a 'Oh Shit' moment when they realized the one and only frogspawn in the hammer rack was missing. Ordinarily, if the customer was local and well-known by the store, the store could contact the customer to arrange for an exchange of some sort for the mix-up. Problem is, this was an overseas customer so there's no way to track him down, let alone contact him. And I doubt you could magically ship one coral back here without the necessary permits or licenses.

 

They apologized - a lot. And in a strange twist of fate, they offered me a rainbow brain coral as compensation - something that I was eyeing on, but thought on passing up because it was too expensive and way out of my budget. I didn't get it for free - I just got it for the same price as my frogspawn (which was still way lesser than what the coral was worth). So from losing something I really liked, I ended up getting something I liked even more. Weird and strange, but I'll accept it. :biggrin:

 

I had the choice of choosing any one brains from this pile of reef candy:

 

I picked a small one, because I don't have room on the sandbed to host a large one. So here's my new tiny rainbow brain:

 

Cute and colorful. :wub:

 

I also decided to pick up my mini maxi nem today. Got this one:

 

From this pile here at the LFS:

 

And to top-off an already good day, there was a tiny 3" crocea clam at the store - a gift to the LFS which was FOC. Store didn't know how much it's worth, and quite frankly, neither did I, but we settled for a very cheap price and I came home with it:

 

So far I haven't seen any of my fish or shrimp pick at it. Even my blennies ignore it (for now), which is good. I'm already dosing Calcium every other day, so I'll measure the tank's Ca levels and up my dosing. Will also need to supplement this little guy with some phyto/zoo mix daily until it grows larger. I currently have it on my centerpiece rock, so that it gets enough light. So far the mantle's extended, and it appears happy, so I'm cool with it. 

 

So now...the only thing to make this a true mixed reef is to add a NPS of some sort - preferably a gorg. My initial plans of acquiring a large purple gorg. fell through for personal reasons, but my secondary LFS has frags of a newly arrived gorgs, so I might look into getting a tiny one in the future.

 

Otherwise, I have my eye set on a neon pink yuma at my primary LFS, which I intend to pick up next month. 🙂 

 

 

 

 

 

Y’all have some gorgeous selections over there! 

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Hmm. Well, things took a dip today. I noticed three of my fish flashing off the sand/rocks/snail shells pretty frequently today evening. (My starry blenny, yellow coris & leopard wrasse). Also, my male pipefish missed his feeding for two days. All signs that something is off. I haven't seen any white spots on any of the fish so far, and I hope not to. But I do suspect the issue of gill flukes is rearing its ugly head again.

 

My leopard looks to be the worst off - I've never seen a fish flash off the sand/rocks that many times in quite a while. And he's still not fully stable yet. 😞

 

So I dosed PraziGold in the tank, but at 1/4 the recommended dose for a tank my size. I'll dose again in 3 days time, and then wait out a week before doing a large WC, and dosing again. I'm trying to stop this before it gets any worse or spreads to the other fish. So far I don't see any red or inflamed gills, but with fish like my Starry blenny and leopard, it's quite difficult to tell since their body coloration is dark and mottled.

 

I'm just mentally bracing myself for some losses, coral/anemone/nem-wise in the tank. I'm quite sure my duster worm will not make it through the higher doses. But I'm risking the safety and well-being of many animals versus a single (or dual) animal. It's not going to be an easy outcome either way. Just hoping the system will hold up as a whole and won't crash on me. That is my greatest (and I'm sure, many other reefer's) fear. 

 

Tentatively, everything looks normal so far and all the corals are closed up for the night now (lights off). I'll report back any good/bad news tomorrow/day after.

 

I did managed to take a few shots in the morning (this was prior to dosing PraziGold) of my brain corals, which were quite puffy:

 

 

The bald spot in the middle of my new leptastrea is already being covered up by new tiny polyps:

 

Every time I check on the galaxea frag, it surprises me with new polyps:

 

My new mini maxi nem sort of 'sunk into' the rockwork overnight - maybe too much light? 🤔

 

Goblin:

 

Lady is thankfully still active and eating:

 

I'll keep monitoring the fish and the reef. Hopefully the flukes will be eradicated with the PraziGold, if not, I'll try to think of another reef-safe method that I can use to treat them. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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I've added another 1/4 dose of Prazi to the reef this evening. My cynarina shrunk a little when I did this, but bounced back after a while. Duster worm is so far still intact. But the tiny crocea clam is very, very unhappy. 😞

 

The mantle wasn't fully extended, and it's been having issues since I added prazi for the first time yesterday.

 

But a small slice of good news - my starry blenny and yellow coris has stopped flashing. I was out the whole day, so I didn't really observe my leopard and he retired to the sandbed early today. But I think he'll be okay too.

 

Will do a large WC (1/3rd of the tank volume) either tomorrow or the day after. Then repeat another 2 doses of Prazi. I'm going to stick at quarter doses each time, so that it won't exceed the maximum dosage require for my tank in any way. I'm mostly taking in the sensitivity of my wrasses into account more than anything. 

 

Also, I found a new baby shroom from my blue spotted red discosoma today! 🙂 

 

 

And I have a couple of bright orange ball-shaped sponges rimming the bottom of my rainbow lobo - which is quite cool:

 

Caught Odin peeking at me from Tic's burrow: (Tic is my zebra barred dartfish)

 

And this is a brief comparison of how much my green galaxea frag has grown from 22/12/2019 until 17/1/2020 - check out all those new polyps! :

 

 

I'll keep monitoring the reef, and especially keep an eye on the clam. The pinched mantle could also be pinched mantle disease (not entirely sure), in which case, I don't think there is much to be done about it. But I'm really hoping it pulls through okay. Have a feeling I might stress out a few other coral pieces over the next week as the treatment goes on, but I'll do my best to ensure there are minimal losses. 

 

 

 

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Quick update:

 

Day #3 of using PraziGold in the reef. My mini maxi nem has completely retreated into a hole in the rockwork and refuses to come out. I caught my leopard wrasse and blenny flashing very few times, but none of the other fish show any symptoms of irritation or discoloration. My wrasse has thinned out quite a fair bit because of its unstable eating habits. It seems to go after very, very small bits of food - like pellets that have been eaten, crushed and spat back out by other fish. It's super-picky and eyeballs everything - I'm not even sure why. 

 

I have some pics snapped early this morning & late evening of the reef as a whole, and also a few feeding vids in between:

 

 

 

My yellow coris is currently the most dominant wrasse of the tank. As such, it is also the fattest and healthiest, although my pink streak, Miu, is not too far behind. I noticed I'm getting good growth with certain types of corals, and nil growth with others. For example, my chalices, favias, shrooms, blastos, galaxea and certain LPS are doing very well - some have even bopped out new heads/polyps. Then I do have some corals which are not growing at all - like my Duncan, which has still remained two-polyped since I first acquired it more than a year ago. Same case for my smaller zoa frags (red PE not included - this colony is actually popping out more polyps) which are sort-of in stasis. I noticed my LA Lakers has been smothered with some sort of fungus, and most of the polyps have melted. 😞

 

And here's a small bit of surprising news - my orange frogspawn is actually making a comeback! I saw new flesh growing down the rim, although some parts of the coral still remain stubbornly skeletal. I think it will take a few more months - maybe even a full year, but if it keeps growing, then I should have a full head by Christmas this year. 🙂 

 

Same can't be said for my green frogspawn, sadly. It's retracting bit by bit now - it'll be a miracle if this piece can bounce back. My older elegance appears to be slowly making a comeback like the orange frogspawn, but the growth is very, very little and its tentacles remain small and stubby. 

 

As for the softies, they have full PE, but are not growing as quickly as how I see softies grow in other tanks online. Not sure why. 🤔

 

But at least all the softies are healthy.

 

The clam definitely has pinched mantle. I compared some pics I took from the day I first brought it home to today, and I noticed that it actually already had pinched mantle when I first acquired it. It just wasn't very noticeable. 😞

 

So I guess I do have several key issues to address, but I'll deal with the fish first, and then the unhealthy LPS. Overall, the tank doesn't look too shabby. And most of the corals still look puffy. 

 

 

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Updates! 

 

(This is a lengthy one, so I'll be breaking it up into sections for easier viewing).

 

Part 1: Fish & Inverts:

 

1. One of my brittle star's legs up close:

 

 

2. Thanos looking awesome as always - he still occasionally flashes off the sandbed, but this has been greatly reduced after the addition of PraziGold into the reef:

 

 

 

3. Miko has come a long way since I added him to the 60G. He used to be incredibly shy, but now I see him perching on various rocks and coral pieces, and he doesn't swim off in the presence of larger, more intimidating fish like my Starry:

 

 

4. Odin still shares a burrow with my zebra dartfish. I was pleasantly surprised to see him actively cruise around the sandbed today though:

 

5. Goblin is probably one of my favorite nanofish so far. He's tiny, but incredibly bold, and constantly hopping from coral to coral:

 

 

Part 2: Mushrooms!

 

1. I've discovered something very interesting today. My red-spotted-yellow discosoma has not only anchored itself to my LR (after being detached for a bit - I just slotted it into a crevice and hoped for the best), but it has also bopped out a new head! :happy:

 

 

2. If you've been keeping up with my journal, then you would know by now I have a 'mushroom mountain'. Or rather, one very large tower full of various colored shrooms, a smaller, mini-mountain of rhodactis, a line of multi-mix shrooms occupying the sandbed, and a yuma 'bridge'. Well, here they are:

 

(Quick overview of the shroom corner): :wub:

 

Part 3: Brains! :happydance:

 

1. Besides collecting shrooms, I like collecting different type of brain corals as well. Here's my latest rainbow brain coral:

 

 

 

2. This is my older lobo which has begun developing green streaks amidst the red outer ring when the light catches it at a certain angle:

 

 

 

3. These are some of my symphyllias looking nice and puffy:

 

 

 

 

4. This is my irregular-shaped rainbow brain, that mostly has a strong orangish-green coloring under my lights. But at the LFS, I observed this coral piece in person under their lights and it had four/five different colors:

 

 

 

5. My cynarina was a bit moody today. It still has dual colors (green/red) but the red is stronger now. My LFS has some unique orange streaked cynarinas for sale, but those are premium and quite pricey:

 

Part 4: Other Corals.

 

1. I'm keeping a close eye on my galaxea because it seems to be growing 'outwards' regardless of being placed on the sandbed, and not on a rock. Although this galaxea might seem a bit more 'tame' than the usual galaxeas (which are stinging monsters with killer sweepers), I'm still very hesitant over letting it sit too close to any of my other coral pieces:

 

 

 

2. Another piece I've been watching is my jack-o-lantern leptoseris. It's actually flaring out now, rather than encrusting down (as it was initially doing). I notice it has developed more green 'eyes' as well: 🤔

 

 

3. For the first time in a very long time, I snapped a proper pic of my monticaps, which are still fusing into each other. The red cap has gained about half an inch or so since early December. The growth isn't fantastic - it's actually very slow, but at least it's still growing somewhat: 

 

Part 5: Other stuff.

 

1. My tiny blue crocea still has pinched mantle in some areas. But the mantle overall doesn't appear to be retracting and is still very responsive to light/shadows/feeding. I think I'll remove the browned out (or rather beiged-out) green encrusting monti & brown pocci frags from it sides and reglue those frags elsewhere, so that the clam won't get stung. Just as a precaution:

 

2. My deadly secret: I have a snail graveyard. :ninja:

 

Each time a snail dies, I clean out the shell and toss it back in the right-back-corner of the tank. Usually I did this because I wanted the hermits to have extra shells to switch into. But now that I don't have any hermits in the DT, the shell collection remains. Some of these shells have sponges and tiny pink tunicates growing on them, which is why I don't bother removing or throwing them away. 🤷‍♀️

 

As for now, things are slowly recovering. The animals appear to be getting better, but I still have concerns for my male pipefish, Prince, who's become somewhat of a recluse and now actively avoids feeding sessions. I'm not sure why. But the moment I turn off my pumps, he swims into the filter-floss compartment and stays there until the pumps come back on. His female counterpart, Lady, however, still has a hearty appetite and swims over whenever she sees me open the cabinet doors. Not sure what is going on with my male, but hopefully he'll start eating again soon or else he'll begin wasting away. 😞 

 

 

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WV Reefer
28 minutes ago, Snow_Phoenix said:

Updates! 

 

(This is a lengthy one, so I'll be breaking it up into sections for easier viewing).

 

Part 1: Fish & Inverts:

 

1. One of my brittle star's legs up close:

 

 

2. Thanos looking awesome as always - he still occasionally flashes off the sandbed, but this has been greatly reduced after the addition of PraziGold into the reef:

 

 

 

3. Miko has come a long way since I added him to the 60G. He used to be incredibly shy, but now I see him perching on various rocks and coral pieces, and he doesn't swim off in the presence of larger, more intimidating fish like my Starry:

 

 

4. Odin still shares a burrow with my zebra dartfish. I was pleasantly surprised to see him actively cruise around the sandbed today though:

 

5. Goblin is probably one of my favorite nanofish so far. He's tiny, but incredibly bold, and constantly hopping from coral to coral:

 

 

Part 2: Mushrooms!

 

1. I've discovered something very interesting today. My red-spotted-yellow discosoma has not only anchored itself to my LR (after being detached for a bit - I just slotted it into a crevice and hoped for the best), but it has also bopped out a new head! :happy:

 

 

2. If you've been keeping up with my journal, then you would know by now I have a 'mushroom mountain'. Or rather, one very large tower full of various colored shrooms, a smaller, mini-mountain of rhodactis, a line of multi-mix shrooms occupying the sandbed, and a yuma 'bridge'. Well, here they are:

 

(Quick overview of the shroom corner): :wub:

 

Part 3: Brains! :happydance:

 

1. Besides collecting shrooms, I like collecting different type of brain corals as well. Here's my latest rainbow brain coral:

 

 

 

2. This is my older lobo which has begun developing green streaks amidst the red outer ring when the light catches it at a certain angle:

 

 

 

3. These are some of my symphyllias looking nice and puffy:

 

 

 

 

4. This is my irregular-shaped rainbow brain, that mostly has a strong orangish-green coloring under my lights. But at the LFS, I observed this coral piece in person under their lights and it had four/five different colors:

 

 

 

5. My cynarina was a bit moody today. It still has dual colors (green/red) but the red is stronger now. My LFS has some unique orange streaked cynarinas for sale, but those are premium and quite pricey:

 

Part 4: Other Corals.

 

1. I'm keeping a close eye on my galaxea because it seems to be growing 'outwards' regardless of being placed on the sandbed, and not on a rock. Although this galaxea might seem a bit more 'tame' than the usual galaxeas (which are stinging monsters with killer sweepers), I'm still very hesitant over letting it sit too close to any of my other coral pieces:

 

 

 

2. Another piece I've been watching is my jack-o-lantern leptoseris. It's actually flaring out now, rather than encrusting down (as it was initially doing). I notice it has developed more green 'eyes' as well: 🤔

 

 

3. For the first time in a very long time, I snapped a proper pic of my monticaps, which are still fusing into each other. The red cap has gained about half an inch or so since early December. The growth isn't fantastic - it's actually very slow, but at least it's still growing somewhat: 

 

Part 5: Other stuff.

 

1. My tiny blue crocea still has pinched mantle in some areas. But the mantle overall doesn't appear to be retracting and is still very responsive to light/shadows/feeding. I think I'll remove the browned out (or rather beiged-out) green encrusting monti & brown pocci frags from it sides and reglue those frags elsewhere, so that the clam won't get stung. Just as a precaution:

 

2. My deadly secret: I have a snail graveyard. :ninja:

 

Each time a snail dies, I clean out the shell and toss it back in the right-back-corner of the tank. Usually I did this because I wanted the hermits to have extra shells to switch into. But now that I don't have any hermits in the DT, the shell collection remains. Some of these shells have sponges and tiny pink tunicates growing on them, which is why I don't bother removing or throwing them away. 🤷‍♀️

 

As for now, things are slowly recovering. The animals appear to be getting better, but I still have concerns for my male pipefish, Prince, who's become somewhat of a recluse and now actively avoids feeding sessions. I'm not sure why. But the moment I turn off my pumps, he swims into the filter-floss compartment and stays there until the pumps come back on. His female counterpart, Lady, however, still has a hearty appetite and swims over whenever she sees me open the cabinet doors. Not sure what is going on with my male, but hopefully he'll start eating again soon or else he'll begin wasting away. 😞 

 

 

Corals all look great. 😃

 

I had to get rid of my Galaxea because it was sooooo mean. Hopefully yours is better behaved......It’s definitely prettier than mine was.  
 

 

And hopefully the pipefish is just being moody.  🤞🏻

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Snow_Phoenix
1 hour ago, WV Reefer said:

Corals all look great. 😃

 

I had to get rid of my Galaxea because it was sooooo mean. Hopefully yours is better behaved......It’s definitely prettier than mine was.  
 

 

And hopefully the pipefish is just being moody.  🤞🏻

Thanks! 

 

Some things are really taking off in the tank, others are stagnant in terms of growth though. I think my biggest battle with running a mixed reef is pleasing *all the coral types at once (which is difficult, because SPS, LPS, softies/shrooms/zoas have different requirements). 

 

I'm hoping my Galaxea stays *good. I kept a different type years ago and it was mean as heck - had to trade it in at the LFS. 😞

 

And yeah, hopefully the pipefish will snap out of it. So far I didn't see any marks/spots on him, but they're so prone to falling sick at the slightest fluctuation in parameters. 😕

 

Definitely a challenging fish to keep, but beautiful nonetheless. 

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WV Reefer
5 minutes ago, Snow_Phoenix said:

Thanks! 

 

Some things are really taking off in the tank, others are stagnant in terms of growth though. I think my biggest battle with running a mixed reef is pleasing *all the coral types at once (which is difficult, because SPS, LPS, softies/shrooms/zoas have different requirements). 

 

I'm hoping my Galaxea stays *good. I kept a different type years ago and it was mean as heck - had to trade it in at the LFS. 😞

 

And yeah, hopefully the pipefish will snap out of it. So far I didn't see any marks/spots on him, but they're so prone to falling sick at the slightest fluctuation in parameters. 😕

 

Definitely a challenging fish to keep, but beautiful nonetheless. 

 

yeah a mixed reef is a pain....... I get the sps happy and then the lps get mad. I just bought some more soft corals and I bet that pisses everyone off. 😂

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9 minutes ago, WV Reefer said:

 

yeah a mixed reef is a pain....... I get the sps happy and then the lps get mad. I just bought some more soft corals and I bet that pisses everyone off. 😂

Well, right now I seem to be keeping the SPS happy, the LPS are 50/50, the shrooms are *very, very happy and the zoas are pissed off. (Lil' buggers won't even pop out a polyp, urgh. 🙄)

 

My mini maxi nem is still in hiding though. LFS told me not to worry too much - apparently another customer who purchased another mini maxi nem from them is also facing the same issue (hiding). According to them, it should come out of the hole in the rockwork when it's more acclimated to the light/hungry enough. 

 

 

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I have more pictures! (And some videos too!) :happy:

 

(Please note that all of this was taken using yellow filter lenses by Coral Color - so some of the corals might come off looking a bit anemic):

 

1. Rainbow Yuma:

 

2. Green cup coral:

 

3. Crocea Clam today afternoon:

 

4. Green, unnamed chalice:

 

5. Candy canes, war favia, cherry garcia chalice & duncan coral:

 

6. Ultra green Malaysian torch (purchased before the ban in Sabah):

 

7. Golden clove polyps:

 

8. Christmas favia & unknown cyphastrea (and yes, this rock is covered in film algae):

 

9. Top-view of the cynarina:

 

10. Older elegance coral, rainbow brain coral, dual-colored lobo, xenia, galaxea, leptastrea, blastomussas & shrooms:

 

11. Malaysian rainbow acans, blasto merlettis, emerald mummy eye chalice & yumas:

 

12. Top-view of the rainbow brain:

 

13. Green monticap is slowly regaining its color from its original shade of poop-brown. Red monti has flared out and has tiny white polyps:

 

14. My largest symphyllia:

 

15. Purple/blue-tippled fluorescent yellowish-green elegance coral:

 

 

16. Giant red PE colony next to the torch:

 

17. My LA Lakers got smothered by fungus, but at least my Purple Death Palys are still here. 😞

 

 

18. Red finger leather colony at the back of the tank:

 

19. The left 'bridge' of LR on the left side of the tank:

 

20. Top-view of the tank under heavy whites:

 

21. Fishies getting ready for the afternoon meal session:

 

22. Afternoon feeding session:

 

23. Thanos during evening blues:

 

24. Favia growing steadily:

 

Issues I'm currently facing:

 

-Male pipefish stopped eating.

-Four fish are flashing off the sandbed and rocks.

-Green frogspawn is covered with red flatworms. Eek. :scarry:

 

Things I'm planning on doing:

-Upping the dose of PraziGold.

-Removed RowaPhos and a tiny carbon bag buried under the filter floss (which I didn't spot earlier)

-Give the frogspawn a dip in Coral Rx tomorrow.

-Manually remove any flatworms found on the shrooms using a baster/pipette

-Up my Calcium dosing due to the clam

-Find a way to coax the mini maxi carpet nem back out in the open so that I can target-feed it something.

-Figure out a way to entice my male pipefish to eat again.

-Clean up the sump because it's full of dirt.

-Do a large WC soon. 

 

Worst case scenario:

-Tear down tank to remove all fish

-QT all fish and use either copper or TTM to treat them (just in case this is Ich, and not flukes)

-Let the display run fallow for 8 weeks.

 

^Hoping it will not come to that, given how difficult it would be to remove that much rock and coral from the tank, plus catching all the fish - most are which below 2" in length, ultra-quick and are incredibly reclusive. QT is also stressful on the animals, and I might lose every single one of them if I do it. Which is why I'm hoping it would not come to that. 😞 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Not really what I wanted to wake up to in the morning, but here it is anyway:

 

Although Helios hovers over the scene of the crime, I think this is the handiwork of one of my urchins. They're the only animals in this tank capable of bowling over entire colonies. 

 

I quickly righted the hammer up and it took a couple of hours, but it's back to being its fluffy-self.

 

However, I had a bigger issue this morning:

 

The. Dreaded. Red. Flatworms. :eek:

 

My frogspawn was smothered in them! I gave the coral 2x dips with Coral Rx and I swear some of the buggers are immortal or something, because they still managed to cling on to the coral. After the dip, I added the frogspawn into a concentrated iodine bath before washing it off with some SW and re-adding it to my tank. The polyps are out, and I can still see some red flatworms clinging on to them stubbornly. :unsure:

 

I think the only reason my wrasses avoid my frogspawn is either because pecking the coral stings their mouths, or the fish can't see the flatworms since they're camouflaged very well against the polyps. I'll probably keep dipping the coral daily until I get rid of the worst of the worms, and then hopefully that'll be the end of it. Another option is using Flatworm Exit, but I'm a little bit hesitant dosing more chemicals into the tank. Plus, the die-off *might cause a leach of toxins which may/may not kill other livestock in the reef. 

 

So for now, I'll be relying on manual removal and biological control (wrasses) to keep the flatworm population contained, at least. 

 

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