Jump to content


  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited


About Subsea

  • Rank
  • Birthday 05/29/1948

Contact Methods

  • Website

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Location
    Austin, Tx
  • Interests
    Hunting, fishing and reefing. At present, I have over 7000 gallons in salt water. At the end of Feb, I will have a grand opening for AquacultureRanch. Macro and live rock will be my mainstay.
  1. Dawn, As always, your tanks & photography are stellar. Kudos to you. I would like to expound on the concept of “old tank syndrome”. In forestry, the analogy of “old tank syndrome” is Climax Forest. @mwhitelock Your comment was incitful and shows an understanding of succesion of different levels of occupancy. In forestry, that would be grasses to savanna to forest to climax forest. In our marine enviroment, switch terms to trophic levels. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trophic_level The trophic level of an organism is the position it occupies in a food chain. A food chain is a succession of organisms that eat other organisms and may, in turn, be eaten themselves. The trophic level of an organism is the number of steps it is from the start of the chain. A food chain starts at trophic level 1 with primary producerssuch as plants, can move to herbivores at level 2, carnivores at level 3 or higher, and typically finish with apex predators at level 4 or 5. The path along the chain can form either a one-way flow or a food "web". Ecological communities with higher biodiversity form more complex trophic paths. The word trophic derives from the Greek τροφή (trophē) referring to food or nourishment.[1] https://northernwoodlands.org/articles/article/what_is_a_climax_forest The best way to grasp the idea of the climax forest – and why some don’t like the term – is to first understand that the concept is itself just one component of an even larger ecological view of how forests develop and change over long periods of time. This larger concept, known as forest succession, explains how even when people leave them alone, forests change. Trees and other plants grow, mature, reproduce, age, and die. Soils build and erode. Weather changes daily, and climate varies over long periods. Animal populations come and go. With time, these sorts of changes bring still other changes that go beyond the sizes of the trees to involve shifts in the kinds (species) and mixes of trees growing in the forest.
  2. Dose nothing. Either feed more or reduce Photosynthesis intensity or duration
  3. Nothing has changed in 50 yrs with respect to phytoplankton culture. These guys wrote the book. http://floridaaquafarms.com/
  4. Lights on 10 hours. Just stirred up a sandstorm in substrate as normal daily maintenance to feed filter feeders biodiversity of larvae fron sandbed detrivores. The reason this tank is in flux is because of major changes in biofiltration in the last 30 days.
  5. @Moolelo Thank you for that question. I know so much more now than then about biofiltration and sustainable reef keeping methods. Yes to micro fauna and fana. I spent 6 months developing the substrate micro inhabitants before adding the first carnivore fish. Include plankton & bio-plankton in with food webs. Bacteria are the microbial overlords in our ecosystem we call a reef tank. On the natural reef, the reason inorganic nutrients read scarce in bulk water is because bacteria consume it, then move it up the food chain as a sustainable food source. I have been skimmerless for 35 years, because I choose to allow the coral holobiont to “conduct the orchestra”. Patrick As I reviewed history of this tank, I realized this tank is 1/4 century old. Longer than the time span between World War 1 & World War 2 I guess that makes me an “old dude”. For me, the beauty of the reef is an expression of Creation. Each of us, is a master sculpture. I choose the route of “Master Gardener”. Nuisance weeds and good weeds (veggies & fruits) all need the same thing: food & space. For food, some need light and some need flow to bring food to it. The uglies have had numerous billions of years to develope strategies to survive. Let’s do a case study on Cynobacteria. I just did a 20G lagoon tank breakdown on a newly set up tank at a church multi use facility. Because of other time demands, the tank floundered two months after set up. Cynobacteria covered tissue of green sinularia and green star polyps and literally dissolved organic biomass. Because tank was 20 miles away, I did not see the issue until too late. Visitors at morning Bible Study were admiring the dark red mat contrasting the vivid green of the sinularia. After everyone was gone, I pulled out tooth brush to do “damage control”. When I brushed off the burgundy slime, I saw craters missing inside main stem of this leather coral. The stench was smelled by a friend from 20’ away. Some years ago, Randy Holmes Farley article on survival techniques of Cynobacteria with respect to phosphate scavenging of inorganic phosphate that was deposited as calcium phosphate, caught my attention. This calcium phosphate is normally associated with limewater addition used in reefkeeping “alkalinity management”. In geologic time of early earth history, athmosphere was a combination of methane & sulfur gases. Cynobacteria used survival techniques to adapt to changing environments and converted those hostile environments to oxygen rich. Because my groundwater comes in at 950 TDS, all of the evaporation makeup is limewater from 1000’ down in a subterranean basin called the Edwards Aquafuer. Well is in a fault zone between both Edwards & Trinity Aquifier which covers 2/3 of ”Texas Hill Country”. Because Texas was a shallow marine sea, silicates are a part of my water input to all of thousands of gallons I maintain. Fourteen months ago, I incorporated sponge filtration as the third leg of biofiltration in my nutrient management methods: bacteria, algae and sponges. I replaced macro with cryptic sponge. Because sponges consume DOC and produce DIC & Marine Snow, both of which are food for coral. It’s a nutrient food web, that feeds itself. I have not used granulated active carbon in 16 months on this 100G system. Food webs are a complex soup. I have read a 6 Part series on Advanced Aquaria by Dana Riddle on “Coral Nutrion”. My favorite sentence in the series is “Photosynthesis is the connection between the inorganic and organic world”. BRS TV Video release on Friday two weeks ago was on “coral nutrition”. Serious inquires only. This stuff is complicated and for me, reinforces natural biofiltration in my Laissez Faire reef keeping.
  6. @banasophia you are kind and generous with your praise to others. That is a good thing. Consider this in a differrent way, if people whose opinions you respect lift you, consider that an important recognition. Accept their recognition of your expression of “aquatic wonderland”. Cheers
  7. I looked at this tank thread and I vote for this one. Not only is the tank gorgeous, the photography is spectacular. Kudos to the Lady from Sacramento. @Christopher Marks consider a second title category: Mentor of the Month. Both categories foster a healthy goal. Excellence should be lifted up, TOTM is a worthy achievement and merits the spotlight as a lofty achievement. While mentorship is not a competive sport, it is a journey of service that has many rewards. At my involvement in this passion that I call reefing, I enjoy an exchange of ideas that challenges my way of thinking. As a teacher and a mentor, I am challenged to further my knowledge to grow. I see that on this hobby forum. Experienced reefers helping newbies. I recently have been given an opportunity to mentor a high school aquatic science class and will soon set this 20G high tank. It is the TOTM. Also to set up will be a macro lagoon tank with hardy livestock from Texas Gulf Coast coastal marshes. PS: Moonlight over HOB refugiums.
  8. Acitivatec carbon is 300% more effective at removing dissolved organic carbon than protein skimming says Ken Felderman. Also, since bacteria move 70% of the carbon from one tropic level to another, Ken Felderman postulates that excessive removal of free swimming bacteria skews the natural food webs in reef tanks and is a likely cause of “old tank syndrome”. Dissolved organic carbon is a normal byproduct of photosynthesis. There are thousands of differrent compounds that combine to make DOC. As a generalization, the DOC from coral is mostly lipids & proteins and the DOC from macro is mostly carbohydrates. Differrent photosynthetic organisms require differrent doc inputs and give off, exudates, differrent DOC. To complicate, not all activated carbon is equal. Using both absorption & adsorption, activated carbon acts as a sponge. PS: Use the extra space in your reactor and put coral rubble there as a matrix for biofilms to colonize as a food source for pods.
  9. Absolutely, yes. I find both gfo and skimmers as not only unnecessary, but all to often, detrimental to biofiltration.
  10. You need to explain better for me to understand why dosing carbon has “obvious benefits”. As I understand organic carbon dosing from Advanced Aquaria articles by Ken Felderman, he says organic carbon dosing grows bacteria. Depending on the carbon source determines to an extent which bacteria are favored. Cynobacteria is a type of bacteria that I do not want to grow. in conversations with @Randy Holmes-Farley, he felt that food provided all of the organic carbon that a reef tank needs. So, I feed my systems heavily and allow complex food webs to process organic & inorganic nutrients to grow live food to feed the reef. As a general rule, Randy agreed that coral and macro would have the same general chemical makeup of C:N:P in this ratio 560:30:1. Dana Riddle “Advanced Aquaria” 6 part series on coral nutrition was highlighted on BRS TV video release two Fridays ago. At later Dana Riddle articles on organic & inorganic chemistry, he brought it all together for me with this introduction, ”Photosynthesis combines the inorganic world with the organic world” and this is how: Carbon dioxide as an inorganic gas combines with water to form a weak carbonic acid. Then carbonic acid combines with carbonate alkalinity and forms bicarbonate alkalinity. Bicarbonate alkalinity combines with photosynthesis to form glucose, which is carbon for the reef. @WhatsReef Methods can conflict & reduce effectiveness. What does your system tell you it needs? FTS? After 48 years of reefing, I observe the ebb & flow of system dynamics. When it smiles, I smile. When it frowns, I look closer.
  11. AMEN. moderators should put a “gold standard” on this post. After 25 years of a mixed reef with moderate success with flame scallops (18 months in tank) and sea apples ( 5 years in tank ), I can speak with some experience & knowledge. recently, in speaking with Randy Holmes Farley, he assured me that food input provides all the carbon that a reef needs. BRS TV series on coral nutrition this past Friday confirmed what Randy said about feeding. Amino acids are produced when bacteria consume uneaten protein from feeding. Many that feed organic carbon experience bacteria blooms like Cynobacteria. Advanced Aquaria has a Dana Riddle 6 part series on Coral Nutrition. He says, let carbon dioxide grow your coral because it is a sustainable source of carbon. Unlimited inert & inorganic carbon dioxide combines with water to initially form a weak carbonic acid which uses carbonate alkalinity to form bicarbonate which when subjected to photosynthesis becomes glucose, which is organic carbon for the reef. Enough biochemistry. After 25 years of using Jaubert Plenum, I completed renovation of 6” dsb with installation of a discharge manifold under Jaubert Plenum to pump up through 2” sandbed.
  12. Thank you for the kind words. You are very technically correct. For the commonwealth, I say GSP. It is too long since last post, there are major changes in place, especially in the last two weeks. After haphazardly ignoring/fighting Cynobacteria for two years, I removed all live rock and substrate. With a 40G Rubbermade tub and four 5G buckets all fish are caught to remove all Blue Devils and a large Melannarious Wrasse which desimated detrivore janitors causing dsb to crash and regurgitate 24 years of detritus. I minimally disturbed the muck under Jaubert Plenum and installed a manifold to pump bulk water into the void under the Plenum to establish a reverse flow under gravel filter. With that done two weeks ago then one week later followed by two ChemiClean treatments back to back. I am so “tickled pink” with the results that I am proud to share pictures.
  13. That’s way to much money. I have recently started up an AQUAFUGE HOB refugium as well as a modifying an Aquaclear 110 HOB filter into a high energy refugium on steroids. I have a lot of experience and actually have air tumble macro production tanks with live zooplankton of varying sizes total volumes > 1000G. to maximize your HOB refugium, seed the bottom with real live sand like from IndoPacific SeaFarm. Grow a matrix of macro with pods, both amphipods & copepods. AlgaeBarn 5250 copepod three species order is a good investment in sustainable live food. what is your main goal for the refugium? If just a refugium, The micro inverts from IPSF.com and the copepods from AlgaeBarn are the gold standard, from my experience with both places. You don’t have toilluinate either. I have a 40W reef tank light on the Algaefuge HOB and on the Aquaclear HOB filter at a flowrate of > 400 GPHr I have a 300W grow light with 4 red to 1 blue ratio and it grows some stuff. Mixed macro with many large amphipods and AlgaeBarn copepods are in this high energy acrylic box. When I can get a more professional photographer, I will make a video to illustrate what I see and it is full of zooplankton as a sustainable supply of live food provided thru nutrient recycling of inorganic nutrients into live organic biomass grown in tank.
  14. In the future, turn off the blue to help identify and Use 5000 - 6500 kelvin spectrum for best identification. I hope your problem cleared up.