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Macros - some frags

The new frag system has captured my attention recently. Watching the clean up crew decimate the algae in one day flat was impressive, and the corals pop against the stark barren rock and black background. New tanks can really recharge your motivation, as you set up new clean gear and get everything just the way you like it. 

Here's a closer look at that frag. I love all the dots that make me feel like I'm staring into the universe.

Montipora hispida, I believe.

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27 month-a-versary - The reef, the Anemones, the *new* frag system

This year has moved quickly.  Already February 10th has passed, which is the 27th month since the 400g was restarted.  Seeing how I missed doing a 2-year update video due to being out of town, I figured such an update was way overdue.  This video showcases the reef from three angles, as well as the 60g, the new frag system, and why the rimless old frag tank HAS TO GO! 

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The cycle is over; fish added; new video

After 21 days, the tank finally measured 0 ammonia, 0 nitrite and 5 ppm nitrate.  Good enough for me, and the Red Spot Glass Cardinalfish.  I filmed their introduction for an upcoming video, but here's a picture of them in the tank. They are eating well, which is perfect. They were ordered from Live Aquaria's Divers Den, and arrived in a well packed box. Pictured above.

The next thing that it needs is lights. I had to install a shelf to hang the lights from, and that's done now.

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20,000g Reef

When I visited the Long Island Aquarium, I asked Joe to do an interview with me about his 15 year old reef exhibit.  This is his full time daily job, and he explains exactly what is involved.  I hope you enjoy the entire hour, which includes behind the scenes and top down footage. 

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The new frag tank is running!

After about a year of saying I needed to do this, it's finally operational. The stand, tank, sump, ATO reservoir, doser container are all built (by me). Plumbing was accomplished and the new Vectra M1 pump is circulating the system. Here are some pictures, less than a day after water was added. The skimmer cleared the water overnight.

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Water tests and what they mean to me

11/28/15 Performed water tests at 1 a.m. specifically because I spotted some STN in my tank all of a sudden.

Temperature late at night read 78.1 °F
Looking at the temperatures recorded by the Apex recently, I had a significant swing due to our weather change over the past 48 hours or so. The low was 77.1°F and the highest was 80.6°F, which is roughly a 3.5°F swing and more than I usually would allow. Maybe this is why three corals are reacting. Not sure, but it's definitely a consideration.

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STN event spotted

I noticed three areas in reef today with white skeleton showing, which seemingly came out of the blue. Not sure why so I did a full set of tests to see what may have changed. Nothing major cropped up but these are my findings. Specifically the base of the Staghorn colony has been affected, as has a Montipora colony and a birdsnest colony. STN is slow tissue necrosis, a creeping death that often happens from the base of the colony upwards.  Here are a few visuals. 


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Frag Tank Stand - completed

I've been talking about a new frag tank system all year. It's November and I'm finally getting it done. The frag tank was made a month ago, but I needed a stand. I'd considered a steel stand to match the rest of my setup, but the cost just didn't justify itself.

Yesterday, a friend came over and offered to assist (translation: made me) with the stand build, so we ran up to Home Depot for the necessary items:

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Two year comparison (picture)

Back in November 2013, I set up the 400g anew after a very long wait for the aquarium to arrive.  I got my rockwork just right, added my corals, adjusted the lighting period, and tended to my reef.  My general rule is keep my hands out of the tank, something I tell people often.  Here's the reef, two years later. Some things have obviously moved, but the majority of what you see is what I had back then, just smaller. 

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Favorite picture of the day

I took this picture yesterday, and once I pulled out the blue fog via Lightroom, I was blown away by how pretty this coral is.  I see it from the front of the tank all the time, but I just don't get up on the walkboard to gaze down into my reef nearly enough.  Hope you like it as much as I do.