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Found 10 results

  1. Well everyone, David here. (aka) @Intriguing Inverts I figured I would start some documentation on my journey in the reefing community starting from just a novice working at my LFS to what I’d like to believe is a self sustaining and accomplished reefer. Im now nearing 8 months into this reefing hobby and still loving every minute of it, I was fortunate enough to find out in 2018 I had a new LFS open up literally 2 blocks from my home in St. Louis, and without that happening I would never be as far as I am today. Last year walking into the door of my LFS Art of Aquaria, I never realized I would not only be making an amazing friendship with its owner Jacob Bugger but also be stepping into a totally different career path then what I had been accustomed to before. Well a year and a half later and I honestly don’t think I could be more happy with my transition from a Culinary Team Leader and Chef to Store Manager at a Saltwater and Freshwater Fish Store. Things definitely took some time getting used to but after making the shift I wouldn’t have it any other way. Not only have I been able to make some really cool friendships and acquire my own 12 gallon long reef tank donated to me by Jacob, but I’ve also been able to help Art of Aquaria become a staple in the Tower Grove South neighborhood here in St. Louis, MO. Its great not only seeing a small business grow, but also being a part of it along the way. Never in a Million years would I have thought my Hometown cross street MorganFord which used to be just bars, would now be a quarter mile strip of so many pop up ventures and endeavors, well as of July 2017 by far my favorite aspiration for this community was sprung, opening a beautiful store front for a wide array of saltwater and freshwater fish. So please if you’re in the Metropolitan St. Louis Area and you’re like me and love all things aquatic, come stop in sometime and say Hello. 😄 Alright everyone now that the introduction is out of the way let’s actually document some Progress! In January of this year I took home a beautiful Mr Aqua 12 Gallon long reef tank, equipped with a Finnex 24/7 Planted Plus light and began the saltwater cycling process. I sourced most of the rock from the previous setup at the store and also got some live rock encrusted in coralline algae to kickstart the cycling process. However at this point I still had no idea what I was going to use for a filter or if I was going to sump it, I didn’t even have any flow in the tank I was using 2 ReptiFlo 200 circulation pumps. Lets fast forward a little bit to when I started trying to figure what I wanted to actually put in this beauty of a tank. First addition to the 12 Gallon was a Pom Pom crab, love these guys such big character for such a little crab. Then I decided one invert wasn’t enough for me and I decided to go with the Hosting Glass Venus Anemone Shrimp and a Mini Max Carpet anemone, well obviously the tank in these early stages wasn’t forgiving at all to the anemone and the shrimp slowly lost his home as the Mini-Max slowly sunk into the most established part of the tank it could find, which was a hole about the size of a frag plug. 😩 Got another Anemone Shrimp and figured I would try my luck with RFA’s because I heard they wouldn’t move as much and they can also host Anemone Shrimp. Well I woke up the next morning to my Anemone Shrimp who had eaten the tentacles off of one of my RFA’s 😡 Well at this point I had given up on the Anemone Shrimp and moved onto the belief that a Sexy Shrimp 12 Gallon mixed reef would be a good idea... Boy was I wrong, man can those guys do some serious damage to SPS corals. I purchased 4 of these cool looking shrimp thinking they would make an excellent addition to my tank, and I was hoping they would just hang out on the RFA’s and Mini-Max Anemone, living the good life while they got target fed cyclopods, mysis, and frozen rotifers but they slowly made their way to my Seriatopora Birdsnest, and it was demolished in a days time. At this point I was fuming and trying to remain calm because it seemed every avenue I turned trying to house these little critters and make them comfortable in a natural environment I was getting some kind of negative impact to my corals or nems ! 👎 So I figured hey I’m just gonna make this the best looking mixed reef I can and whoever wants to peacefully live here is more than welcome to so my search for the perfect cohabitants continues. But hey let’s talk about some Coral, “Have we still not covered the Coral?” That’s the funnest part of the tank, well at least I think so, I know some may differ because of their sheer love for fish and I totally respect it, but man do I love some eye popping Coral, it just really adds that depth and real layer to a tank, like man that’s thriving! There was no way with the tank I was given I wasn’t going to have one of those thriving reefs I had seen on YouTube and from all the customers showing me pictures on their phones of their amazing reef tanks. They were so colorful and had so much going on I had to delve deeper into this after all, I had a great baseline understanding of how things worked and what they needed to grow just listening and learning at the shop day to day. So what was gonna hold me back from one of these thriving reefs? Nothing I said, absolutely nothing! I love a great challenge and if this was going to challenge me to become not only a better reefer but a more patient person along the way, then I was gonna give it all I got. So I got started on stocking my mixed reef with an assortment of stuff. I started off with easier to care for things like Ricordea Florida and Leptoseris, they did good but with a under prepared and ill equipped novice things went south. Like I said I was not equipped for the task at hand and eventually due to neglect and sheer lack of care a few of my first pieces died under the hands of a beginner. Well I eventually started getting myself ready for what I knew was going to be a daunting and long road of trial and error, I made sure to go out and get a refractometer, I was making sure to stay on top of water changes and manually topping off, I was persistently looking up different tips and tricks to see some success out of this hobby and after months of what seemed like back and forth reading on probably many of the same articles and subjects I think I have finally dialed in my 12 gallon long reef for the long road of success! Most recently I have updated my lighting system I now currently have 2 Ai Prime HD’s over the nano reef and everything seems to be doing great! I really love the control the AI Primes deliver I’m still able to keep my candy blue reef tank and have great growth at the same time. Lets get down to some Tanks Specs and my routine maintenance, finally! 👏🏻 12 Gallon Long Nano Reef: The Mixed Reef (35.4" x 8.3" x 9.4") •Setup: January, 7th 2019 •Lighting:Previously the Finnex 24/7 Planted Plus ran on just whites and blues, now I have 2 AI Prime HD’s and here is my preset. •Filtration:AquaClear 30 with MarinePure Biobrick, Seachem Matrix Carbon, Phosguard. •Flow: Jebao OW-10, could really use another one •Dosing: Im currently dosing Aquavitro’s 8.4 for Alk and Aquavitros Calcification for Calcium every three days, and I also broadcast and target feed their Reef Fuel once a week. •Testing: Right now I am currently testing Alkalinity twice a week and Calcium once a week with Hanna’s Digital Checkers, I honestly don’t know if I would enjoy testing as much as I do without them, I’m hoping to get the Phosphate checker as-well but for now nothing has been negatively effected with consistent feedings and running the Phosguard. I want to give some shoutouts to some really great customers and friends who have helped me along the way, I don’t think you guys realize how appreciated you are, I’ve probably asked you similar questions a million times over and it’s only made me a better reef keeper thank you both so much! 🙌🏻 @inland_reef @This guy is extra salty
  2. Krish87

    Giant Hawaiian Feather Duster

    A beautiful feather duster with an amazing bluish base and a brownish orange tips.
  3. antigonus

    Order of adding livestock?

    I'm in the process of cycling, and even though it probably won't be for a while, I have continued to give thought to what i'll be putting in my tank. It seems like a lot of people suggest adding a clean up crew first, then fish, then corals. Is this the best way to proceed? Adding the clean up crew first makes sense, but I've read that some invertebrates can be sensitive to nitrate fluctuations, so is there any risk to adding them right after the cycle? I've also heard the suggestion of adding the most peaceful/shy fish first, and I was thinking of getting a fire fish. Is there any disadvantage to adding a single, small, peaceful fish like that? Or would it still be best to wait a few weeks after adding the clean up crew to put any fish in?
  4. Hello, having kept freshwater aquariums for around a decade, I have decided it is time to try my hand with saltwater, and despite being extremely nervous, I am very excited to get into the hobby. My tentative plan is to have a 32 gallon tank with a few small to medium fish, some peaceful invertebrates as a clean up crew, and eventually some easier soft, and possibly LPS corals. So far this was the combination of fish I had thought of, i'm curious if it would work for a tank this size, and that the animals would be compatible with one another. 1. x1 purple firefish 2. x1 Banngai cardinalfish 3. X1 starry blenny 4. x1 Ocellaris clownfish In addition to these, I was planning on a clean up crew of several snails and possibly a few hermit crabs if they don't get too aggressive, a few skunk cleaner shrimp, and maybe an emerald or porcelain crab, but I don't know enough about them yet to say for sure. So for those veteran reef tankers out there, does this seem like a tenable plan? if not, what on the list should be removed or swapped out for something different?
  5. Hobbs

    Hobbs's 8gal Nuvo Reef

    Hobbs's 8gal Nuvo Reef Chronicling the development of a pristine nano ecosystem. Goal: minimize weekly maintenance while maintianing a portable and hardy marine reef Specs: Tank: Nuvo Aquarium Nano Reef 0202 8 gallon capacity Filtrations: Mechanical Sponge, activated carbon sponge, phosphate sponge Light: 8 watt 14,000k (6 white diodes, 4 blue) Sand: Arag-Alive Bahamas Oolite Live Rock: 6.6 lbs of cured live rock, fairly porous but could be better. Coralline growth present Water: R/O with salt from LFS. Total water is 5 gallons Start date: 8/5/17 Reasoning: Wanted a small durable aquarium that would be easy to move every year. Modern and sleek design with LEDs was a massive plus. Wanted to maximize biological filtration so wanted as fine as sand as possible and as much rock that would asthetically fit in the tank Initial thoughts: The tank is too small for all the fish I want, the sand is too fine, the light needs to be stronger. Still looks super cool. Plans: Have 2 small fish, maximize symbiotic pairings, have lots of inverts and corals. Maybe future anemone or clam (need vast lighting overhaul first, I know )
  6. Krish87

    Paint it RED!!!

    Yup, I like to hang upside-down over the hammer :-) Signed. Flint - The Red Blood Fire Shrimp
  7. Hey all, I want to upgrade my currant tank size (8g) so that I can keep a couple more things. What size do you think I would need for all of this? I wanna try to keep it as small as possible (without doing an unbearable amount of water changes). This will also be my symbiosis/ invert tank so if you guys have any other suggestions, let me know! I will be adding a sump with a refugium for chocolate chip stars and macros. Fish: Two designer clowns Possible shrimp goby Inverts: Bubble tip anemone Rock Flower anemone garden Porcelain crab Harlequin shrimp Pom Pom crab Possible candy cane pistol shrimp Possible 5 sexy shrimp for nem garden Possible anemone shrimp Possible clam down the road Coral: Mushroom and Ricorda garden Elegance Coral Hammer Coral Birds nest coral Montipora Possible gorgorians I’ve never seen anyone do such an extensive invert list in a nano so I am not 100% sure on the compatibility of all of them together in a small tank Any cool ideas for a set up?
  8. Hobbs

    Hardy Nano Saltwater Aquarium

    Hey everyone, My 8g aquarium is almost done cycling and I am thinking about livestock options. I have had 6 years of experience with a 10 but after a 2 year break (went to Africa) I decided to start from scratch with a cube. I have 7 pounds of very porous pre cured live rock, 12 lbs of sand, standard mechanical/ charcoal filter, and a moderate intensity LED light fixture. I know my livestock selection is fairly limited so i wanted to get a couple thoughts before making any purchases. I move every year so the corals/inverts/fish do have to be a bit hardy. For a center piece coral, I wanted to do a birds nest coral and have some mushroom and zoos, maybe a couple other smaller corals or a leather eventually. Now the hard part. Fish. I know one or two at most but I really like symbiotic relationships and am having a hard time with compatability. I was at first considering a royal gramma (slightly larger than ideal though) for its coloring but I realized its a little aggressive. I am also thinking a pistol shrimp/ watchman combo but the coloring is kind of dull. Also I am concerned that the pistol shrimp might kill other inverts i put in. I'm of course going to do snails and hermits but I am pretty tempted to go with sexy shrimp and a porcelain/Pom Pom crab and spot feed. I could just stick with clown gobies or neon gobies but I like more active, free swimming fish I am completely open to suggestions and going with something completely different than what I have planned. Thought of a Harlequin Shrimp but those are too much work...
  9. t_fins

    Stocking Timeframes

    So my Biocube 29 has been up and running for about a month. Cycle has completed. Current parameters are 1.026, 0 amm 0 nitrite >10 nitrate. Diatom bloom is over. I do 25% water change weekly. Removed bioballs and replaced with DIY media basket(filter floss and chemipure) I currently have 2 maroon clowns(received as Father's Day gift and I know they will have to be rehomed to larger tank soon) a small CUC (3 turbos, 2 astera snails, 4 hermits) and one Frogspawn frag(2 heads) My question: I know I need to go slow with fish (want to add 1-2 more small fish) and I should probably wait at least 2-3 months for invertebrates and 9+ months for an anemone. But how slow do I need to go with coral? Can I add frags weekly? Monthly? More than one at a time? I'm primarily stocking with softies and LPS as I haven't upgraded from stock lighting yet.
  10. Hello all, First of all, let me apologize if there is a good topic on this info elsewhere - I have been scouring the net for a few hours, and haven't been able to fully answer my questions, so I'm hoping to find some clarity here. I appreciate any time and information you can offer me, as there is still a whole lot that I don't understand. I realize that caring for aquatic life is a significant investment of time and money, and that my question seeks to (sort-of) skirt those caveats, so I hope I don't offend anyone - I have a lot of respect for the reefkeepers here and am just looking for some possible answers. With that said, what I'm looking to do is set up a very small tank at work, with mostly plant life to observe, but I would very much like to have some kind of tiny invertebrate in there like a shrimp or crab. However, I can't really manage large or frequent water changes in the space I'm in, as it is the web department (still marveling that they're letting me have a tank at all). I have been wondering if it would be possible to set up a 2.5 - 5 gal tank with perhaps 1-2 shrimp, a crab, or a few snails, and then LOTS of plants to try and get away with smaller volume water changes once, maybe twice a week. I definitely wouldn't think of subjecting a fish to this; I had considered a betta early on but quickly learned how foolish an idea that was. Realistically, I know I might just have to stick with some cool aquatic plants (I've wanted a marimo forever and will just stick one in a jar with some lucky bamboo if everyone thinks this is a terrible/otherwise impossible idea) but I would really love to have something I can feed and watch move around a bit. Even sea monkeys, lol. So, any suggestions for an ultra-low maintenance nano-tank? I've been looking at plants like marimo, anacharis, java fern, and lucky bamboo to have poking out the top. Would it be possible to add in any inverts? What type of maintenance would I be looking at if so? Would a filter/heater/additional light be necessary under those circumstances? Sorry for any stupid questions
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