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It's Friday Night!

While most would get excited to go out on a Friday night, I instead stayed in and tinkered with my reefs. Reefkeeping needs attentiveness, and tonight was one of those nights where I needed to address specific needs, or lose corals.  

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Goby & Pistol Shrimp pairing

I got this paired up team at our club's last meeting. And they have stayed under the Acan colony in the 60g Anemone Cube. I took a few macro shots...

The shrimp is nearly blind, so the goby plays lookout. His tailfin touches the shrimp at all time, and with a single flick the shrimp retreats instantly, the fish quick to join in. It's a symbiotic relationship.

This is a Hi Fin Red Banded Goby.

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Necessary shade

For many years, I've used foam sheets from Hobby Lobby (most hobby craft stores have these) to keep the refugium light off the rest of my gear. People often think they need colored or black acrylic in their sumps to avoid algae growth in other compartments and within their skimmer / reactors. However, that's really not the case. While we can see light in the other zones, what happens initially is the light bounces off the acrylic baffle and goes back into the refugium zone. 

And as the macro algae grows and fills the zone, even that is obscured.

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Magnetic stirrer for water tests

A few weeks ago, I saw something really neat and contacted that person for more information. If possible I hope to sell these from my shop, but for now let me showcase what he sent me as a gift. It's impressive!

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When visiting the LFS...

Today's club event took place at Saltwater Paradise. I made the trip across town not only to attend, but to do a PAR meter demonstration using the brand new Apogee meter for everyone in attendance.  This meter is the latest model, designed to measure LED lighting as well as metal halides and T5 bulbs.  MQ-500 PAR meter

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Nyos Quantum 300 Skimmer Review (video)

After months of use, regular cleanings, minor adjustments and a full breakdown twice, I'm releasing my product review of the Nyos Quantum 300 protein skimmer.  I love the look of it, but what pleases me most is how quiet it is.  It's dead silent.  Here's the full video, including breakdown.

And spoiler alert, I got another one for the frag system.  This is the Quantum 120.

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2.5 years later (Day 915)

Today is the 2.5 year anniversary of the 400g reef 2.0, which is when all the livestock was re-added to the new 400g reef aquarium.  Originally I'd set up my reef in 2011, but after a leak occurred all livestock was moved out while the tank was replaced, and exactly 2.5 years ago I restarted again. Over time, everything has been growing, which you've been tracking via my blogs or youtube videos. 

Here's a couple of pictures from November 2013.

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Ocean-related in-home art

I met a local artist at Dallas Comic Con events two years ago, and discovered she used to be in the saltwater hobby herself. Lhars Ebersold does some beautiful work, some of which I've shared from her Instagram account from time to time. This is her when she's not at a con

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Captive Bred Yellow Tangs

In December, huge news was shared about how the Oceanic Institute at Hawaii Pacific University announced that they were finally able to state they had successfully bred Yellow Tangs from eggs.  This hurdle was seemingly insurmountable, as captive bred tangs have been attempted and failed many times.

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RBTA on the move

If a bubble tip anemone moves, that can make a hobbyist nervous.  It could sting some corals, or get sucked into a pump's intake. In my anemone cube, that's nearly impossible.  Today's event was amusing because not only was the creature shifting to a potentially better spot, but the clownfish were going along for the ride. They were unwilling to accept the change, even though there are plenty of stationary bubble tips available throughout the tank.  Here are a series of pictures from this evening's meanderings.