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Ann

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Coming along really nicely Ann. Can I ask where on earth you got those amazing corals from in the UK?!!!

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I wondered when a UK reefer would ask that question. ;) The sad fact is that it's impossible to get corals like this from the UK (at least in my experience it is). The zoas and Ricordea were mail ordered from a US company. PM me if you want any further details.

 

I made an exciting discovery in the Pico a couple of days ago. Whilst peering into the rear of the tank I discovered a small pair of pink tunicates that must have hitchhiked in on the LR. I can't believe that I haven't noticed them before now. :happydance: It would be really great if they survived but I doubt that I'll manage to keep them long term especially since I'm not particularly feeding this tank (with the possible exceptions of target feeding the Fungia and the hermit crabs every now and again 'cause it's great fun to do so).

 

I think that squirts are fascinating creatures, simple on the outside but quite complex on the inside. Fingers crossed that they don't fade away. fingerscrossed

 

squirts131205.jpg

 

Best regards

 

Ann

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Wow Ann, the tank is looking great!

 

I love the zoanthinds! Very beautiful!! :wub:

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Ann your tank is really looking great. Also that hood and base came out terrific the lights look like a pro installed them. If you are a newbie to DIY then pretty soon you can open up a shop and sell some. Or trade for corals:^)

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I wondered when a UK reefer would ask that question. ;) The sad fact is that it's impossible to get corals like this from the UK (at least in my experience it is).
maybe you can check with the people over at seahorse.org. a lot of them are from UK and some of them are reefers and nano-reefers.

 

how are the tunicates doing? i've been getting a mini-explosion of tuni-growth. some are normal but i'm getting them out in the open now. are you feeding them/tank?

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Thanks for the wonderful words of encouragement, my Pico and I really appreciate it. :D

 

 

Tiny,

 

The tunicates are doing OK... I think. It's kinda difficult to know for sure though, they haven't died but they haven't increased their numbers either. They are just there. :P They are quite responsive however, opening an closing their inhalent (or is it exhalent? ;) ) siphon at external stimuli (such as hermits barging past or large bits of detritus floating by etc), I like to think that this is a positive sign at least.

 

What type of squirts do you have? It's great that yours are increasing in numbers. Got any pics of them??

 

One filter feeder that does seem to be doing extremely well in my Pico are Sycon sp. sponges, I think that you refer to them as Q-tip sponges in the US. They are popping up all over the place and are particularly thriving underneath the Chaetomorpha algae in the 'refugium'. I had been running the tank without any carbon/polyfilters (because the filter that I had them in generated so many bubbles it drove me crazy so I removed it), I think that has helped the sponges along a bit.

 

Here's one from the 'refugium':

 

sycon181205.jpg

 

Today however, I decided to put some carbon and a chunk of polyfiter back into the tank (this time placed in a net bag and hung in the 'refugium') because I noted the zoanthids were starting to look a bit sorry for themselves. The reason for this I have put down to a spot of long range (or should that be short range since this is a Pico tank) coral warefare. All was fine till I introduced a 6 headed frag of Blastomussa wellsi, a single headed frag of B. merleti and a small branch of a SPS coral two days ago. I find it surprising that the zoanthids reacted to the new additions so quickly, so much goes on in a reef tank that we can't see.

 

The huge numbers of pelagic copepods have (sadly) faded away now but they have been replaced by an enormous number tanaidaceans (a type of isopod). They are just about everywhere crawling over the rocks/corals, sides of the tank and on the sand too. I expect their numbers will dwindle too as the tank matures.

 

Here's one of the little beasties:

 

miso181205.jpg

 

I don't have a new FTS and shots of my new corals yet but will rectify that in a couple of days time. :happy:

 

Best regards

 

Ann

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amazing shots (as usual)! ;)

 

i'm gonna add some more desktop background pic with those, hope you don't mind. :happy:

 

i like the aquascaping and placement. the sycon is a very nice shot too. like carinya mentioned before i think your shots are probably the best sample shots of these animals i've seen yet on the net.

 

i'll be posting some pics later today (some fts, macros, buggie closeups like yours, etc) and i have a couple of the tunicates (new & old growth). a bit difficult shot to get because they're the clear tiny variety. i.e. weed tunicates. :blush: i'd post right now but i'm on my son's desktop. i had to completely replace my laptop's hard drive this morning. it's still in recovery/install. good thing i had backed everything up tho. fun times.

 

so you're not running the fuge in the back anymore? the sargum looks like bean pods. are you trimming them back constantly? i gotta figure their growth has to be mad. good for export though.

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Yep the fuge is still running, the Chaetomorpha looks healthy enough it's just not growing as quickly as I would have expected it to. Oh well I can't complain really as long as the hair algae/cyano stay away.

 

Here's a quick pic of the 'fuge from today with the new bag of carbon/polyfilter in residence:

 

fugeright181205.jpg

 

I haven't intentionally harvested the Sargassum yet, tho I have knocked a few clumps off when sticking frags down. I don't feel that it's grown large enough to cause problems yet (well not obvious ones anyway).

 

In addition to the Sargassum I do also have another Macro growing in the Pico which I have tentatively identified as Avrainvillea sp.. The fronds are very thin and paddle shaped. Quite attractive IMO. I wonder how long it will keep growing for? Or perhaps more importantly I should be asking if it will become large and invasive?? :lol:

 

paddlealgae181205.jpg

 

Can't wait to see your new pics. :D

 

Best regards

 

Ann

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Hey Ann! The tank looks absolutely stunning! I think I know which US based company you are getting those zoos, etc from and if so they are terrific! I order quite a lot from them and have seen that they are very popular with UK reefers. They will also do requests for small frags if you have not asked specifically. Anyway, looking terrific and I love your photos! I have to agree that the close-ups that you get are some of the best I have ever seen!

Cheers,

Karen

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Hey Ann, your tank is looking great. I really like your aquascaping.

 

I'm also going to have to try your lens trick sometime!

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Time for one more update before Christmas decends upon us all.

 

To the Pico I have added a frag of Blastomussa wellsi, chopped off the colony I have in my large tank:

 

bwellsi201205.jpg

 

A tiny frag of Blastomussa merleti snapped off the colony I have in my large tank:

 

bmerleti201205.jpg

 

I tried to take more of this but, jeez, this thing is welded to the rocks really well. Plus I fragged several branches of SPS colonies accidentally during the whole process, so I had to make do with just the one head. This leads me on to my last addition, a branch of (presently) pink Seriatopora hystrix also taken from my big tank:

 

seri171205.jpg

 

I'm curious to see if: 1. It survives in this Pico tank, 2. If it survives how well it grows and 3. What colour it ends up. The lighting in my large tank is 400W MHs so it's under a whole lot less light now. I decided to go with this one because the branches seem better proportioned for a smaller tanks. :P

 

Just a couple of other pics of my zoas now. Here's one lot that I haven't shown yet, they were in the left hand corner of the tank but have been forced to move by the arrival of the B. wellsi. They have been split up and spread around the tank now:

 

rwz171205.jpg

 

Urgggh and what's happening to these guys? It seems like they want to reject that nasty bit of rock and superglue gel that is attached to them. It was underneath the colony but somehow it's got turned over and is now on display right in the middle of the colony. :o

 

rz201205.jpg

 

I think that the bottom half of those zoas have actually attached themselves to the rockwork but I'm not prepared to mess with them just yet. I'll give it a while longer before I pluck up the courage to cut off the plastic tie and hopefully the top half will have attached too and let go of that ugly blob of glue.

 

Last but not least, I'll leave you with the latest FTS:

 

fts201205.jpg

 

Happy Christmas everybody! :happydance:

 

Best regards

 

Ann

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very nice shots! i love that 1st blasto. don't worry, glue melts away eventually. :lol:

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Hey Ann! Looking terrific! You UK reefers DO have a time advantage to me! I tried to buy the first zoo colony you showed and it was sold - now I know to who :P Enjoy :)

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OMG your pictures are crazy! awsome tank.

 

I think the second macro algea is Halimeda. I have quite a bit of it in my 75G, and had it in my NC6, but took it out. It takes up calcium to grow, it will get large, but is easily trimmed(and you can easly root the trimmings). I am going to guess that it is Halimeda Opuntia, but I dont think you can really tell until you see how it grows. Here is an arcticle on it. http://www.reefkeeping.com/issues/2004-04/nftt/index.php

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Thanks Max. :D

 

I don't think that this is Halimeda sp., it's not got the characteristic segmented growth pattern as seen in this genus, though perhaps that may develop with time.

 

Avrainvillea sp. is the closest match I have found up till now but I'm not positive about it really. There are some good pictures of this genus in the book 'Marine Plants of the Caribbean' (Littler et al.) but sadly few are present on the net. Avrainvillea longicaulis is said to have broad to oblong, paddle shaped blades that are composed of many branched densely packed filiments. I think this describes the algae in my tank, but my algae has it's holdfast attached to a rock and not embedded in the sand as is described for this species. I'm probably be way off with my ID then. :lol:

 

Here's another shot showing, I hope, the blade composition a bit better. They are quite thin and flexible.

 

paddlealgae241205.jpg

 

Best regards

 

Ann

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Very nice Ann!!! I realy like that new SPS :D Looks like that Fungia isn't so happy though :(

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Actually the Fungia is doing great (.... I think). It has developed an odd colouration though and only fully expands when the lights have gone out which is a bit of a shame. Here's a pic that I took of it 3 days ago:

 

fungia211205.jpg

 

When it first started to change colour I was quite worried that it was bleaching out but it's been like this for a while now and seems to be happy. There's no sign of recession and it eats well once per week. I love watching it take food into its mouth and always place the Mysis at the edge of the disc so that I can watch it be magically moved into the middle. :happy:

 

Best regards

 

Ann

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i cant keep plate coral either...mine dont open up during the day...I have one that is orange and another that is...well was green...te green one bleached REALLY bad so i think im going to take it out of water and give the skeleton to my aunt b.c. she collects them from the beach...so i might as well give it to her... (i know that after a mom dies, if you leave it in soon there will be baby plates but i dont want plates everywhere and plate coral is miserable in my tank...)

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Hmm, you all have me worried now. :unsure: Having looked back at my pictures I can see why you think it's doing badly.

 

Travis, what is your experience with Fungia? Have you had one that has changed colour like this? Is mine on a downward sprial?? I'd just assumed that it was adjusting itself to the new lighting conditions.

 

Fishfreak, when you say that your green one bleached, was it an all over loss of colour? I've just had a good look at mine and the lighter areas seem to have taken on a slight green flourescence now but the brown bits are still brown (perhaps a lighter shade of brown than when it was first introduced). I really hope that it's adapting to a different set of conditions. I know that if these corals start showing some skeleton they rarely recover completely and they can also produce babies from a tiny bit of flesh. I'll be more than happy if the latter happens. ;)

 

Best regards

 

Ann

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