When a number doesn't click in your brain

I wanted to share this item with y’all, because we all learn and relearn things daily. I’ve been testing alkalinity like clockwork, but the tank has been running lower than I like. I adjusted the black knob on this controller down slightly, but the number on the screen has pretty much been sitting at 7.5 (pH) for days. I thought that was odd that the number never changed, so I investigated further this afternoon.

Apex: Better automation than before

I've been using the Apex controller for my reef for years, and for the most part once it is set up, I don't touch it. If it works, I'm happy. Occasionally I get motivated to make some changes, be it because some equipment has failed and had to be replaced, or something was upgraded.  I tend to resist change, believe it or not.  I know that sounds odd from a guy that tries out new products and loves gear, but when you reef is happy you normally don't change anything to avoid causing problems.

How about a few new pictures?

I haven't blogged on my own website in what feels like "much too long" and tonight after getting back from dropping off shipments for my customers, I decided it was time to insert the walkboard, climb up upon it and take a few pictures of some corals from above.  My reef is looking so pretty day after day, and most of my updates seem to take place mostly on my youtube channel. Feel free to remind me to update things here, as there are times when it's nice to just read a quick update on the latest.

Manjanos - how I removed them from my system

When a pest like manjanos (Anemonia Manjanos) are spotted in a reef, there are a number of removal methods to choose from. I allowed them to grow rampantly in my frag tank, essentially ignoring the problem for much too long. In this video, I demonstrate how I took the time to scrape them off the rockwork one by one until the reef was free of them.

A work-tray that fits multiple tanks

When I have to do things in the aquarium, I like to have a solid work surface. What I want is something that will fit over the frag tank, over the 400g reef, or over the Anemone Cube. Each tank has a different dimension, so I designed a tray that could be placed over any aquarium using varied lengths of PVC pipe. This first tray is intentionally made to be right above the water's surface, allowing me to place fragging tools in the tray, as well as work with pieces of live rock.

Pretty corals

Here are a few pictures I took over the weekend of my reef. Everything is running smoothly, and I've decided to begin dosing vodka to lower nitrates in my system. I used to do so years ago, and I'm ready to do it once more. 

Drew's Acropora


For about three days in a row, I heard a slight 'beep' sound coming from my reef.  It happened exactly every five minutes, but I could not find the source. I'd set a timer, then run into the fishroom and stand near whatever I figured was causing the sound, yet had no luck after several tries.  Since I'd only get one tiny half-a-second to determine the source's origin, and when I couldn't would then have to wait five more minutes for it to happen once more, it became somewhat of a mystery. I wasn't about to spend all day trying to ascertain the object, though.

ReefTrace graphs my parameters over time

Using the ReefTrace app to track all my water parameters, I've been entering in quite a few data points over a period of many months.  Today I decided to use the Compare option and selectively worked my way through each test, and I set the Date parameter from Jan 1, 2017 until today. That was easier than trying to remember when I entered various test results.  

Unknown coral update

Back in February I purchased an unknown acropora from a local store at our frag swap. I thought it was interesting, that it had potential. I had no clue what it was, but something grabbed my interest so I bought it. Looking back at it today, I don't know what I was thinking. lol

Under white lighting: