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Found 12 results

  1. ValerieR

    66 SCA Predator Reef build

    I started out with a 13.5 Evo nano Mantis tank back in April, but Mr Pickles didn't make it through his first molt. I ended up with a White ribbon eel ("Slimy") that "wouldn't eat." He eat pellets now. Main issue is that he will quickly outgrow my 13.5, so I needed better long term planning for him. I settled on a 66 from SCA, because if I got rid of some clothes and got a smaller dresser, I could fit it in my room. This is sort of long, so I'll try to keep it brief and with pictures. I'm condensing 2 months of planning into one post. Found a used tank on Craistlist. Haggled, waited, he finally agreed. Sale didn't include the skimmer or light, but I paid WAY less than it was posted for. New tank/stand runs $1200 on Amazon. I got a skimmer (Bubble Magnus 5) for $70 on Craigslist in Reno when I was visiting a friend, and the guy had a Maxspect Razor 420 he let me have for $30 and a reactor for $20. Sent the light back to Coralvue for warranty repair of the burnt out LEDs and broken fans. Now, it's good as new. I like it, and think it's a good light for what I spent on it. I set up the tank, and started planning the plumbing. This is my first sumped tank. From my research, the old owner had set up the overflows all wrong, so I started over. I got Innovative Marine's tank mat for both the tank and the sump. The hinges were so rusted they were falling apart, so I swapped them out. I planned my plumbing on paper, bought parts, test fit it, and then glued it. It has a manifold for (3) 1/2" lines, a check valve, and several unions and gate valves. I went with a Herbie overflow. I did a write-up in the DIY section on mounting the power switch into the front board, so I'll spare you the details. Short version: hole, light up switch, behind it, outlet. Cords stay up away from water. Add a labelmaker, and I'm happy. My ATO is a $6 cereal container from Walmart, but I not sure it'll hold enough (1.5 gallons) so I may connect 2 together with little RO hose bulkheads. The sump is about 18 gallons, so it takes a bit to raise the water level. I needed to leak test, but had no good way to drain it if I used tap water. I ended up deciding to use straight RO, then when I'd fixed any leaks, I added salt. I left my live sand bags in the tank for volume's sake, and it took almost 3 days after work to fill with my little under sink RO system. But I made my money back on it right there. Once it was full, I starting adding salt. Estimate it to be about 80 gallons with the sump. Started low, and fine tuned. I've got it at 1.024 now. I'd prefer it to 25, but with the ATO not on, it'll get itself there before I put livestock in it. Sunday, I added the sand. I took a clean razor blade and split each bag. I tried to dump them gently, but no luck. The bubbles coming out and dumping action stirred everything up. I put my eel tubes in the sand, and covered them. I added filter floss and black foam stuff to the sump baffles to help catch sand. The skimmer, amazingly, picked up a TON of sludge. I should have my Current USA (Amazon) wave pumps when I get home, and I'll see how the sand is. If it settled, ill need to even the sand out still. After that, I'll pull my filter sock, turn off my skimmer, and add Dr Tim's. I'll probably hang some frozen silversides from a veggie clip for ammonia. They're starting to freezer burn anyway. I added chaeto yesterday, and I'll add more from the 13.5. Should give it a boost, and start adding pods. My last tank cycled in less than a week, so hoping for the same. More pics to follow once I get home. I'm working on the program/timer on the Maxspect, anyone have any advice? I'll be taking the live rock and almost all the coral out of the 13.5, when would it be safe to do that for the corals, since they're attached? Plan for the tank *so far* is Slimy the White Ribbon eel (about 16-18" now), 3+ Leaf fish, 3-4 McKoskers Wrasses, and a Scopas, Yellow, or Purple Tang. I'll need to trade them out as they outgrow the tank. One of my LFS have 2 Waspfish, so I'm very tempted to grab them and cut out the wrasses, although I'd like a few "swimmy fish". Here's Slimy, yawning.
  2. With social distancing having no foreseeable end in sight, my significant other gave me the green light on a pico/Nano bookshelf build. My Waterbox 70:2 will also appreciate this as I have been messing with it too much as of late. The tank will go where my pico contest tank Was previously. I will also use most of the equipment I used on my pico contest tank. I have decided on the Lifeguard Aquatics Crystal 7.3 gallon peninsula. Tank: Lifeguard Aquatics Crystal 7.4 gal peninsula. Light: Nanobox Tide Return: Sicce Micra Skimmer: Reef glass Skimmer Heater: 50w neotherm Flow: Hygger Eco-slim ATO: XP Aqua Heater: Viaqua 50w, Inkbird controller Filter Media: 250ml seachem matrix Sand: 5lbs live sand Rock: KP Aquatics live rock Dosing: DIY Kalk reactor powered by Kamoer x1 doser Livestock: mantis shrimp (Neogonodactylus curacaoensis) Blue Eyed Cardinalfish Coral/inverts: SPS: Red planet, Infected green Stag, Red monti cap, green monti cap... LPS: candycane, orange lepto Softies: ricordia Yuma, ricordia Florida, red mushroom, orange jawbreaker mushroom, forest fire rhodactis Anemone: “Black widow” bubble tip anemone, Red mini carpet anemone
  3. This story begins way back at Christmas 2018... As it was our first Christmas together, I decided she deserved a second ADA 60P. This where the addiction truly began for me... EQUIPMENT: ADA-60P Vortech MP-10 Cobalt Neo-therm 100 watt heater Aquaclear 70 Hang on Back Filter Mame Design Skimmer AI Hydra HD 26 w/HMS Mount Inkbird Controller (controls heater and clip on fan in the summer) This tank was designed for a dual purpose. The tank keeper wanted a mantis (G Smithii was at the top of the list), and I wanted a rock flower garden. We decided to compromise, like all good couples and do both. We spent the next few weeks designing and building this tank out. We wanted to make a box that would be a den, for the mantis with dual entrances, made out of PVC, but would be sturdy enough to hold 30-40 pounds of rock. We cut out our pieces of acrylic and glued them together with Weldon 16. We wanted something fun, to fill the box with, when the tank keeper suggested Gummy Bears, I knew that’d be a perfect match for rock flowers. Roughly 30 pounds of gummy bears later, our box was filled and sealed. Unbeknownst to us, that wasn’t enough weight to keep the box from floating... Once our box was made, we set out to make a rock wall for the rock flower anemones. The wall was also meant to hide our equipment. What we didn’t expect, was for the the box of gummy bears to float. So, we had to get enough rock, to weigh it down. We also had to tweak our original plan, to now make the rock wall one solid piece. The idea was that it would be heavy enough to keep mantis den from floating in the tank, or being able to push rocks out of the tank. We used Marco and Stax rock to complete our rock wall. It’s got space for the AquaClear 70 intake tube, and room for our skimmer. Our heater is also hidden below the AquaClear, and behind the rock wall. Throughout the last year, I found rock flowers are really, really, really dirty in a small water volume. I’ve also found that zoas LOVE the filth of rock flowers. So I’ve set up the base of this tank as my zoa grow out to help support my addiction to buying new corals and additional rock flowers. Also - I found the best time to get the tank keeper on board with larger rock flower purchases is when she’s had one too many craft beers and is falling asleep on the bar. (Note this is at home, not at an actual bar. She’s usually my DD when we go out.) Here’s a few shots from the tank this evening.
  4. aclman88

    Aclman's Pico (Retired)

    FTS 4/12/2020 - Last Picture in it's full glory before ugrading to 20 g tall. FTS 1/30/2020 Tank: Petco Imagiatrium 3.7 AOI Removed the sump area entirely to make more room for rock and coral. Livestock Fish: Frank the Green Clown Goby Inverts: 1 Cerith Snail 2 Nassarius Snails 1 Trochus Snail Coral Softies: Green Star Polyp Green Leather Coral Variety of Zoas 3 Random Mushrooms Green Ricordia Kenya Treef LPS: Acan Colony (started as 2 heads and now about 6) Hammer (Two heads) Torch (Almost two heads) Duncan Green Candy Cane (5 heads) SPS: Random from Frag Swap (no clue what kind) FIltration: Aquaclear 20 running Filter floss, chemipure elite and purigen Lighting: Lumini Asta 20 Heat: Cobalt Neotherm 50W Cooling: Small USB Computer Fan set up over the Aquaclear Filter Flow: Small 80gph submersible pump Feeding: Spot feed mysis to LPS (2-3 x per week) Target Feed reef roids once weekly Maintenance: Stare at tank daily Pick bubble algae and scrape glass every other day Weekly Water chance of 1 gallon Change filter floss during water change Replace Chemipure bimonthly Replace Purigen when exhausted This tank started off as a planted betta tank but I soon found the size to be inadequate as well as ugly. I tried and failed to use aquasoil and the mopani wood I bought was leaching sap and was therefore unusable. I quickly grew tired and took down the tank and decided to try my hand at running a reef tank. I had a FOWLR in highschool but never made the jump to coral. Huge thanks to @TatorTaco who responded to a post I made asking for feedback and was instrumental in getting the tank setup by being kind enough to send me sand, rocks, heater and a ton of other extras. Some other people I need to thank are @Clown79, @Lula_Mae, @ninjamyst, @ksadam, and @tgore for all their advice and experience! I hope to keep this journal up to date as a record for coral growth, triumphs and any failures I may (will) come across. Currently battling an infestation of Bubble algae and some red cyano as well as green algae that are both growing on the sand and the walls of the tank. No way to test for phosphates, so I am planning on getting a Hanna ULR checker soon so I can stay on top of those numbers. I theorize it coincided with reduced nutrients when stopping all feeding to try and kill off hydroids that were starting to spread. The hydroids are under control, but I think it allowed the algae to start and take hold. I am slowly sucking out the sand during water changes and that is helping to stop the spread of algae on the sand bed and might eventually try going no sand bed to allow me to crank up the flow a bit. I won't be adding emerald crabs since I have hear mixed reviews on wether they are reef safe.
  5. ValerieR

    Evo 13.5 Mantis Reef Tank

    I started out with a trip the the LFS to "look". Found Mr Pickles, labeled as a "Green Mantis". Decided after 10+ years away, that I needed another predator tank. Researched, decided on the Evo 13.5 for general ease and compactness. We don't have a lot of space, which is why I didn't have a tank yet. Set up the tank using buried pvc for tunnels and LifeRock Shapes for scaping, added water on April 4th. Cycled with Mr Tim's, "live" sand, and a healthy clump of chaeto from my LFS. Tossed in a sacrificial small pair of threadfin cardinals (cheapest fish at the LFS) for ammonia and backup meal plan. Tested, tested, tested... tank cycled in about a week. Picked up Mr Pickles and 2 huge Turbo Snails which could hopefully withstand some bashing. Got a sand sifting star for detritus. Got an Octospawn (a wall - had looked like a branching initially at the store) and some zoas from the $10 and $20 bin. Mr Pickles eats krill from tongs easily. Cardinals prove harder to feed, mysis in the water column makes a mess. Got the intank chamber for chamber 1. Turned chamber 2 into a fuge. Having issues with wild temperature swings. Octo isn't doing so well. Added a controller. Added an ATO. Added another light. Occasional improvement followed by more decline. Started nightly searches for pests. Mr Pickles is still doing well, holes up in the tubes at night. Research discovered he is likely a she and is a Pseudosquilla Ciliata, a spearer. After two weeks she buried herself in her tubes and won't come out. I think it's time to molt. LFS said they had her at least two months. Have added more corals. Everything is doing well except the octo. I dipped it. I changed the water flow. I tested. Everything looks fine, yet, it declines. I'm beginning to suspect an overzealous Turbo of picking at the lower edges, causing it to retract and stress out. Algae growth is appropriate, chaeto/ grape culerpa in the fuge is growing. Tank is chock full of pods, which may explain why the cardinals never seem hungry. Micro brittle stars that came in the grape culerpa are doing well. I hand sorted and picked them out to put in the display portion. PH as of today (5/8/19) is 8.0, ammonia is 0, nitrate is 0, nitrite is 5.0, salinity is 1.025 and temp ranges 0.5 degrees from 78, usually 78-78.5. I do 1 gallon weekly water changes. We added a purple firefish last weekend to have something that would swim around. The cardinals aren't like Biaggi (sp?) Cardinals like the LFS said, but are schooling and want a group, so they are healthy, but hide a lot. The Firefish promptly tried to hide in Mr Pickles' tubes, but we were able to block them until it found another place in the rock. It wasn't too expensive at $15; I won't put a fish in I'd be devistated to see eaten, but this one is at least interesting to watch for now. I may try to trade the cardinals for almost anything else. Current corals: Octospawn, candycane, red acan, green acan, orange/green zoas, GSP both long and short variety, duncan, small liverock piece with a mushroom, featherdusters, and sponge on it. Considering getting a peppermint shrimp or 1-2 hermits while Mr Pickles is in hiding. Maybe they won't smell "new" my the time she comes out and might survive... briefly.
  6. Hey guys! I put in an order for a Peacock Mantis at my LFS. The order came in today, and it turns out they sent a Bay Ghost Shrimp instead of a mantis 🙄 , but, my LFS is re-ordering the mantis, and it should be here next week. I just want to triple check and make sure that the tank I've set up for the mantis is going to be right for it. I've got a 40 breeder with around 25 lbs of rock - I'll be adding more, but everyone is sold out locally, unless I wanted to buy some of the painted rock (which I don't). Flow is relatively low, with just an Aquaclear 110 running the tank. I've got two heaters in the HOB for redundancy, and to prevent any mal-aimed punches from shattering them. I've got a 1" sand bed. Everything good so far? My main questions are about lighting and tank reinforcement. I know Peacocks are prone to shell rot, and from what I've read, the best way to combat shell rot is to use relatively low-powered actinic lighting. Am I correct? If so, I think I'll just go and buy a cheap shop light and throw in some old T8 bulbs, or maybe I'll just order a cheap actinic LED strip online. As for tank reinforcement, I've heard that the only time mantises usually break aquariums is when they're trying to build their burrow and they hit the bottom glass. Do I need to worry about lining the bottom of the tank with acrylic or anything? Thanks!
  7. I had a lot of fun making this video. Let me know if you enjoy. The tank has been up and running for about 4 months now and I’m pretty proud of it. The video is mostly of the mantis shrimp and his funny antics. But it also shows the chronological evolution of the tank since the day I brought it home. Let me know what you think!
  8. HingleMcCringleberry

    Mantis shrimp in a nano tank?

    Hi all ive decided to get a peacock mantis shrimp and give it its own tank. I found an old oceanic 8 gallon bio cube on Craigslist for 35$ and was thinking of using that. It fits perfectly on my nightstand. I also have a 20 gallon setup that I took down a few months ago when I upgraded. But it is a budget 20 gal setup and not exactly quiet or pretty. I think 8 gallons could be big enough for a mantis shrimp if I provide it with lots of burrowing spaces and a deep sand bed. What do you think?
  9. ValerieR

    Mantis ID requested

    Can I get some help getting an ID on my new mantis? Green, about 4" long, SPEARER, out and all over in the daytime. Likes to dig under broken rock rubble instead of going over them like any other normal thing would do. Likes PVC caves/tunnels. Currently going by Mr Pickles. Very photogenic, especially if I show him the pictures afterwards, so if you need more photos, I can see what I can do. The Berkley mantis ID site seems to be down.
  10. I ended up, on a whim, at my LFS and was shocked to find a little Green Mantis. I haven't had a tank since my daughter was born (she's 8), but I'm jumping back in for this guy with a Fluval Evo 13.5. I set up the tank on Sunday (March 31, 2019) and have live sand, chaeto, and Dr Tim's. I was going to add a firefish for cycling/movement but they ran out and I grabbed 2 Threadfin Cardinals instead (bad idea... too shy). Main question, how soon can I add my mantis? The LFS won't let me "hold" him, but insists no one else has been interested in him. I'm worried I just set everything up and he'll get snagged. He looks like a Veridis to me, anyone else have any thoughts on what he is? Excuse the bare tank... the rock will be here Friday. There is a full network of PVC tunnels under the sand for him though.
  11. GraniteReefer

    Hugo Stiglitz the Mantis Shrimp

    Recently I purchased some beautiful rocks off KP Aquatics(epic Gorgonians and rocks) and had mentioned that I hoped a mantis shrimp would hitchhike its way to the granite state. Sure enough within minutes of unpacking I noticed Hugo Stiglitz slipping through the rocks being a creature of the black lagoon. Having not fully thought about the rocks then housing a villanous murderer I realized the rocks he resided in where permanently his and he would need his own tank. He was already in an IM10 I was using to QT the rocks and cycle them but the depth between the panes allows him too much hiding space for decent viewing. So I bought the Mr.Aqua serene 3 gallon tank. The tank is seriously my favorite tank ever! At 17.7"x 5.5" x 7.1" the dimensions on this thing are a dream! I want a nice clean look so I am going with a toothless overflow, tempted to call it a coast to coast but is that only on tanks that crest over the length of the aquarium not the width? Always wanted a white back wall but never found one for sale so I will be fulfilling that dream too. In this thread I plan on chronicling the build process of the tank and also Hugo, Who I hope turns out to be half as cool as another murderous sea wench nanoreef knew so well. It's my first time working acrylic and designing my own AIO insert, and also my first predator tank. Also would love to have some comments that could even make the guys in lawns lounge blush so speak freely. And I will copy one of the other posters who make such nice first posts showcasing equipment and such, at the Chris Marks guy that yells at me for being political can we maybe get a template so I don't have to spend time figuring it out? I have included a picture of a cardboard mockup of my simple plan.
  12. “Darkness falls across the land The midnight hour is close at hand Creatures crawl in search of blood To terrorize y'all's neighborhood” Or, ocean in this case. Welcome to tonight’s Creature Feature. @lkoechle is your average housewife. Cooking, cleaning, more cooking, more cleaning. Saving children from killing themselves and getting screamed at by not letting them kill themselves. @skoechle, your average 9 to 5 American male. Goin’ to work, and bringin’ home the bacon. They live a quiet, predictable suburban life. Until the day they receive their live rock. Or should I say, Horror Rock! I love creature features… and that’s what this tank is. A creature feature. Home, hopefully, to a loveable N. Wennerae. A stomatopod from my wonderful homestate of Florida. They make lovely pets. I highly recommend you acquaint yourselves with these True Facts and this comic. Ah, don’t you just want to hug them?! <3 This is a sister (albeit smaller sister) tank to the 100 Days of Nanos contest tank. Equipment: Fluval EVO Sea 5 gallon Auqueon QuietFlow 600 return pump Theo Heater 25 watt Livestock: N. Wennerae Coral: Favia Lobophyllia Mandarin Fireworks Clove Polyps Kenya Tree Radioactive Dragon Eyes Zoas Red montipora mollis (all waiting in the Lagoon) Ball sponge Orange Sponge Red Boring Sponge Red Sponge
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