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tidepooldreamer

IM 14 Peninsula - My first reef

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tidepooldreamer

Hello all! I joined nano-reef in 2019 with the thought of starting a little 5.5 gallon pico of just corals and inverts, no fish, inspired by the little tidepools I loved exploring as a kid (hence the username). This never came to be, between discovering it was going to cost more than I'd anticipated even for a simple set up, and starting grad school in another country! It was a wonderful experience, until of course COVID happened, classes went online only, and I came home early before being stranded overseas as airports increasingly closed.

 

A few months pass, and as it becomes increasingly clear I won't be going back to school as usual for the next semester - cases are continuing to rise and it doesn't seem to be going anywhere soon - the thought of a reef begins to call to me again. This time though, I'm more prepared, and the 5.5 tank I'd planned to use feels too cramped. And so my journey begins:

 

I chose the IM Nuvo 14 peninsula, because it's still small enough to easily find somewhere to put it, and I find the dimensions visually appealing. The fact it comes with a lid is a nice feature; not something I'll have to buy separately like many of the other AIOs on the market. This is the first low-iron glass tank I've owned, and I'm thrilled with the build quality; for the price of the tank it feels really sleek, and the clarity is impressive. I unboxed it on a video call with my partner, and she couldn't even see the outline of the glass until I pointed it out!

 

I started cycling my rocks back in late September - 6lbs of dry rock and 2lbs of live rock from my LFS. I didn't expect much from the live rock other than a starter culture of beneficial bacteria, but I was pleasantly surprised to find micro brittles, pineapple sponges, and fan worms, with 0 pests.

 

FTS 12/28/20:

IMG_20201228_145244.thumb.jpg.24e09c79483c83f0716e8548f71c60a4.jpg

 

DETAILS:

Tank: IM Nuvo Fusion 14 Peninsula w/ stock return and media basket

Light: AI Prime 16HD Reef

Heater: Eheim Jager 75W (need to change with one that fits in the back!)

Rock: 2lbs live + 8lbs dry

Sand: 20lbs Caribsea Special Grade

 

STOCK:

4x Blue Leg Hermit

 

And that's the tank as it stands currently! I added the hermits first since I had almost no algae growth yet and they seemed the easiest to supplement their diet. I've been offering them frozen mysis, NLS pellets, and nori, all of which they enjoy very much. As I now have a decent coating of green algae on the rock and glass, I will be adding some snails to my CUC in the next day or two.

 

My intended stock when the tank is ready is a pistol shrimp/goby pair, and very tentatively a Tanaka's pygmy wrasse.

For corals, I am thinking of a mix of softies and LPS - I've been looking at zoas and favias, with maybe a galaxea, maze coral, and ricordea. Further down the line I'd love to try an easier SPS - birdsnest maybe? Or a monti? I'm hoping to get at least some of the corals in before the fish, to give them chance to attach before my pistol shrimp can do any demolition work 😅

I'm also interested in a selection of inverts - dwarf pink feather duster, money cowrie, porcelain anemone crab. Perhaps a yellow ball sponge once the tank is mature and running well!

 

Thanks for reading so far, and I'd love to hear any thoughts!

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