Jump to content
TerraMagnus

Project: Kitchen Reef

Recommended Posts

TerraMagnus

Our story begins in 1989. Boy works in LFS. Girl works in LFS. A year later they start dating and soon after that their fish rooms merge.

 

Fast forward a bit. Boy & girl have some children, and many aquariums together. But the economy collapse, boy & girl lose almost everything (except their children), and go on a long aquarium hiatus during their recovery.

 

Fast forward to today. Boy & girl have one more kid (now making three). They are recovered from old economic hardships. And they miss their shared hobby.

 

...

 

The kitchen is the social center of our crowded little home. It's a very small kitchen, and space is at a premium. But my wife voiced to me some interest recently that she'd like to have an aquarium again, specifically a reef, and very specifically she was interested in the Fluval Evo 5 (no sponsorship, just a sincere personal preference on her part). And she wanted this right smack in the middle of the kitchen countertop so everyone could see it frequently throughout the day.

 

She was out of town yesterday with the kids for a dog show, leaving me alone to embark on a project. I headed over to the LFS (The Fish Room in Raleigh) and they got me set up with their last Fluval Evo 5, a compact heater, some live sand and live rock, and a jug of salt water.

 

Wife came home last night and saw this in the kitchen. I got her sincere reaction on video, which I'm cutting together with some other footage for my new YouTube channel.

 

I've not upgraded any of the stock components (yet?) on this tank. And no, I don't intend to stock with LPS/SPS.

 

I have to say, though; I can't help but feel a little bit like Buck Rogers combing back to the hobby after a long hiatus. The technology and products have changed. Certainly the pet industry has changed and moved far more toward big box stores. I'm really fortunate to have a good shop near my home. I don't think I would have even bothered with a project like this if I didn't have a good shop nearby.

IMG_1268.png

  • Like 7

Share this post


Link to post
Elephant999

Great story. I love the Evo’s.  I’ve got it’s bigger brother, but love the clean look they have.

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
TerraMagnus

Day 3: Signs of Life

 

We're noticing microscopic creatures scurrying around on the glass now. They are nothing more than white pinhead dots to the naked eye, but under magnification we can see antennae & a tail.

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
WV Reefer
21 hours ago, TerraMagnus said:

Our story begins in 1989. Boy works in LFS. Girl works in LFS. A year later they start dating and soon after that their fish rooms merge.

 

Fast forward a bit. Boy & girl have some children, and many aquariums together. But the economy collapse, boy & girl lose almost everything (except their children), and go on a long aquarium hiatus during their recovery.

 

Fast forward to today. Boy & girl have one more kid (now making three). They are recovered from old economic hardships. And they miss their shared hobby.

 

...

 

The kitchen is the social center of our crowded little home. It's a very small kitchen, and space is at a premium. But my wife voiced to me some interest recently that she'd like to have an aquarium again, specifically a reef, and very specifically she was interested in the Fluval Evo 5 (no sponsorship, just a sincere personal preference on her part). And she wanted this right smack in the middle of the kitchen countertop so everyone could see it frequently throughout the day.

 

She was out of town yesterday with the kids for a dog show, leaving me alone to embark on a project. I headed over to the LFS (The Fish Room in Raleigh) and they got me set up with their last Fluval Evo 5, a compact heater, some live sand and live rock, and a jug of salt water.

 

Wife came home last night and saw this in the kitchen. I got her sincere reaction on video, which I'm cutting together with some other footage for my new YouTube channel.

 

I've not upgraded any of the stock components (yet?) on this tank. And no, I don't intend to stock with LPS/SPS.

 

I have to say, though; I can't help but feel a little bit like Buck Rogers combing back to the hobby after a long hiatus. The technology and products have changed. Certainly the pet industry has changed and moved far more toward big box stores. I'm really fortunate to have a good shop near my home. I don't think I would have even bothered with a project like this if I didn't have a good shop nearby.

IMG_1268.png

 

Welcome back to the hobby. 😊

 

Looks good so far!

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
billygoat
2 hours ago, TerraMagnus said:

Day 3: Signs of Life

 

We're noticing microscopic creatures scurrying around on the glass now. They are nothing more than white pinhead dots to the naked eye, but under magnification we can see antennae & a tail.

Sounds like copepods to me! Those guys are always a welcome sight.

 

Looks like you are off to a great start. Keep us posted with your progress. 😊

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
TerraMagnus
2 hours ago, billygoat said:

Sounds like copepods to me! Those guys are always a welcome sight.

For sure! The thrill of this for us is less about the corals and more about the strange and tiny creatures (even the pests). Yeah, weirdos. Guilty.

  • Like 2
  • Haha 1

Share this post


Link to post
TerraMagnus

Day 3: It's Not Over Yet

 

Water tests look like nitrogen cycle hasn't even begun. Understandable with negligible bioload. Added two tiny hermit crabs and fed them a sinking pellet. Will ramp up a little more on the cleaning crew later in the week.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Christopher Marks

Welcome back to the hobby @TerraMagnus! You're going to have a blast watching the ecosystem come to life.

 

Don't write off LPS corals from your livestock list just yet, they're not as difficult to keep as you might think. We've come to understand their needs better, feeding them occasionally really makes a big difference, and it's easy with a pipette and powdered foods like Coral Frenzy or Reef Roids. The first coral in my pico reef was an acanthastrea in fact. 🙂

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
TerraMagnus

Shipment from FloridaPets arrived today. Added a cup of live sand, some pods, and a few micro brittle stars. Still just ramping this thing up carefully. Of course the tank is all cloudy with the introduction of new substrate.

Share this post


Link to post
TerraMagnus
3 hours ago, Christopher Marks said:

Welcome back to the hobby @TerraMagnus! You're going to have a blast watching the ecosystem come to life.

 

Don't write off LPS corals from your livestock list just yet, they're not as difficult to keep as you might think. We've come to understand their needs better, feeding them occasionally really makes a big difference, and it's easy with a pipette and powdered foods like Coral Frenzy or Reef Roids. The first coral in my pico reef was an acanthastrea in fact. 🙂

Thanks. I'm definitely easing back in. "Back in the day" it was voodoo. I have to get caught up with developments over the last ~15 years or so.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
TerraMagnus

First fish dripping in now: yellow clown goby.

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
billygoat
47 minutes ago, TerraMagnus said:

First fish dripping in now: yellow clown goby.

Excellent choice! I love those guys. 😁 What an exciting occasion!

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
TerraMagnus

Here she is after a good night's sleep, perched high to keep vantage over her vast 5g territory.

295FDBEF-FB9E-4E2B-99B0-77AF492457C9.jpg

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
WV Reefer
9 minutes ago, TerraMagnus said:

Here she is after a good night's sleep, perched high to keep vantage over her vast 5g territory.

295FDBEF-FB9E-4E2B-99B0-77AF492457C9.jpg

 

They are the cutest with their rosy little cheeks. 😊

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
TerraMagnus

Nitrites & nitrates are surging. Tank is cycling now. 50% water change, wait for the bacteria to start staffing up to take care of this before anything new goes in.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
YzF

Looking to be a lovely addition to the house. I too think LPS is possible. The investment would be on the lightings. Get something with enough wattage whichever brand it is. 

And welcome back to the hobby.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
TerraMagnus

Yeah even though the wife wanted something all-in-one that just works, I don't think I'm going to be able to stop myself from upgrading this tank. 🤣

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
debbeach13

Welcome to NR. 

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
TerraMagnus

The nitrogen cycle has settled down. Anthony the yellow clown goby is easing off his hunger strike. We’ve also started adding some frags.

 

We found another shop, Fintastic in Cary, who had a really superior selection of frags and other reef creatures. Four frags came home with us last night.

8733D6E6-9D4D-4809-B051-378D1B111AA0.jpeg

2F101EC6-D289-4E96-BF10-44582B35503B.jpeg

1E213C24-74B6-4EA9-8321-871D519399B5.jpeg

6BF11DBF-562E-4974-8794-5EF4B200842B.jpeg

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
TerraMagnus

As I’d mentioned, Anthony the yellow clown goby had not been eating much at first. We added a couple more small live rocks and he seems to be appreciating the extra structure. And his belly is starting to show its gratitude. He’s more secretive, though. But I appreciate that he’s not hidden totally, and that he gives us just one more creature to discover.

 

The copepod population is climbing. Add a little food to the tank and the sand erupts with previously hidden life.

 

The plan is to just add some hardy frags for now and make sure everything is stable. Wife has her heart set on adding an anemone and a nice clownfish. She’s also got a sequestered live rock, away from the main stack, that she wants to get some green star polyps started on.

8037CB47-21C2-4324-BC12-C8EDA026A93B.jpeg

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Wonderboy

Glad you two get to have some fun again with the hobby   :]   Looking like you're off to a pretty good start - nice frag grab! Tagging along!

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
TerraMagnus

The tank is fully cycled now. We went to the shop last night and picked up a little astraea snail, a super tiny hermit crab, and this beautiful little frag.

 

The sand looks pretty dull to the naked eye but we keep a magnifying glass nearby which reveals many pods thriving.

 

I’d introduced some micro brittle stars early on and one of them revealed her arms during feeding time last night. So tiny. Her arms are like threads. Too small for me to get a good photo.

 

Anthony, the yellow clown goby, was a very fussy eater for awhile. But he’s settling in well now, and eating most of what we can offer with great gusto. He’s still not so sure about the frozen brine shrimp (constituent part of one of the blends).

D457EABC-0277-4EB2-BF40-DBD1EBFC467A.jpeg

A32B6175-3FB4-43E0-BF37-03576242AE84.jpeg

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
TerraMagnus

One of the zoanthids had been opening in a bit of a heart shape after we got it home. It always opens up nicely, but now, after its had some time to settle, I wonder if it maybe took some damage on the way from it’s display pool at the shop to the kitchen reef.

C458C941-6027-4EDB-9D6D-3AC3E970F00F.jpeg

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Tired

Great start! Very interested to see how your corals do under that light- I'm eyeing that specific tank myself. Is it possible to adjust the amount of blue in the lighting, or is it all set on one ratio? 

 

That does look like some damage on the zoa, but I'm sure it'll recover well. I might gently turkey baster it now and then to make sure nothing accumulates on it that could give it an infection before it's settled.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Wonderboy

I agree, if it is openning, it is recovering just fine. Also those look like palythoa to me   ;]

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Recommended Discussions

×
×
  • Create New...