Monthly Archives: June 2011
Monterey Bay’s Aquarium new section opens to the public on July 2nd and from the details emerging it will really be a striking new addition to this well known aquarist destination. Key to the new exhibits will be a focus on lighting techniques and up close viewing stations allowing you to get nice and personal with puffins and sea turtles. LINK … More:
photo credit: oskay Without a doubt, whenever anyone asks a question or posts a comment about LED set-up, there are always droves of people who line up shouting, “WELL, YOU COULD HAVE BUILT A DIY FIXTURE FOR WAY LESS!!!” To that, I say, “No you can’t.”… More:
I know there have been numerous threads on building rock, but I think I make it differently. I make it hollow so besides allowing me to make it any shape, it also helps grow anerobic bacteria that will help with nitrates.
My entire reef structure is supported on this type of “rock” and I can build rocks very long and thin, something that is not easy to build with other methods. It is also very cheap, practically free and only takes about 15 minutes over 3 or 4 days.… More:
Free Sample for Entering
Every entrant receives a sample of Top Dressed Otohime product – food for your fish. Larval to bloodstock, depending on species. See contest rules for details.
Free Sample for Market Survey
Participate in our Optional Market Survey and receive a second Top Dressed Otohime sample in a different pellet size!
Top 3 Runner Ups
$50 gift certificate – good toward the purchase of any Commercial Aquaculture or Reef Nutrition product(s) – or toward products from our new line!
Grand Prize Winner
$250 gift card to the store of your choice, including (but not limited to) the purchase of any product(s) sold or produced by Reed Mariculture.
Final reminder that Reef Nutrition’s contest to name their new product line ends at midnight tonight. As an added bonus, if one of our members has the winning entry we’ll send you a special Reefer Care Package! ENTER HERE
I absolutely love boxfish. It doesn’t matter what species, I love them all! I’ve had anything from the most commonly available Yellow Boxfish (Ostracion cubicus) to the more exotic Flame Boxfish (Anoplocapros lenticularis). Most people have an understanding or have heard that boxfish can be poisonous to other fish when stressed. Knowing this myself, I still find it hard to avoid keeping them with other fish. Of the many species I’ve kept over the years I’ve had three incidents in which boxfish caused the death of other fish. The first incident was in 2008, when mysteriously fish were being found dead in the morning even though they showed no signs of issues. They behaved completely normal the day before. Having tested the water and took many actions to uncover the issue nothing appeared obvious. As a precaution, I added carbon filtration. The deaths stopped for 2-3 days. I thought it had passed when suddenly the deaths started again. At this point, my Large Male Whitley’s Boxfish (Ostracion whitleyi) stopped eating. This alerted me to the fact that it may have been releasing a toxin called ostracitoxin. I removed the fish and did a water change and replaced the carbon. The deaths no longer happened. Because of the number of boxfish I kept in the past, I believed this was an isolated incidence (okay, maybe the lack of intelligence on my part contributed). I kept others without the fear of poisoning other fish. I went incident free until I moved from Manhattan to NJ and put a Flame Boxfish in a bucket with my prized filefish and a powerhead failed. Within minutes of the powerhead in the bucket failing, all of the fish were dead. Certainly not enough time for oxygen depletion to be the cause. The Flame Boxfish must have gotten stressed and released toxins. As a result of the last circumstance I avoided boxfish for some time. It wasn’t until recently that I started keeping them with other fish again. I had a couple of male Blue Boxfish (Ostracion meleagris). One passed away without causing a problem. This built my confidence with keeping them in a community tank again.
So now we get to the situation that prompted this post. I recently acquired a small female Whitley’s Boxfish. I started having unexplained deaths in my 240 gallon tank. Water changes and carbon did nothing to stop the issue.… More:
A reminder that several “listening sessions” of the National Ocean Council will be held over the next few weeks, this is your opportunity to voice your opinion direct to the council in regards to the national effort to protect our seas, lakes and rivers. If you can take off work, do your part and make it to one of these meetings and represent the needs of the aquarium industry and the various conservation groups that make our hobby a sustainable activity. LINK… More:
Digital Aquatics has released yet another module in their long line of add-ons. It’s early on in the press of this one, but from what I can tell it is simply a multiple temperature probe hub. It will allow the user to have up to four temperature probes run from the same controller, and should monitor and control them all separately. This would mean that hobbyists with multiple systems could monitor them all from the same central system, and that some level of redundancy could also be built into a system with multiple probes on the same tank. This new module will connect to any Reef Keeper model. Pre-orders will be available in late August, so if this device interests you, look for that shortly. http://www.digitalaquatics.com/… More:
While in Omaha Nebraska, I had the opportunity to visit Mitch Carl, curator of Kingdom of the Sea at Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo. I also had the chance to meet Jason Diefenbaugh, Mitch’s trusty Aquarist. Mitch and Kingdom of the Sea are well known for their involvement with Sexual Coral Reproduction (SECORE), an organization that addresses the issues of sexual reproduction in hermatypic or reef-building corals. In 2006 Mitch and SECORE were on a special assignment collecting eggs and sperms from Elkhorn Acropora (Acropora palmata) off the beaches of Puerto Rico and fertilized thousands of juveniles. Currently, Kingdom of the Sea houses many of these A. palmata juveniles in their facility. Many of these A.palmata babies have been shipped to other public aquariums around the world. Jason the trusty aquarist, is responsible for many large reef exhibits; a beach tank of roughly 10,000 gallons, a symbiotic tank holding about 2,000 gallons, a live coral display around 3,000 gallons, and a new Indo Coral exhibit with approximately 9,000 gallons. He is constantly on the run removing finger prints, feeding fish, making water changes, cleaning, cleaning, and more cleaning. The Amazon exhibit was one of my favorites. This tank is about ten feet long, maybe longer with one large wall of glass—fully enclosed—above the water line is sealed as well. In the water were the typical large Amazon fish; Red Tiger Oscars, Red Tail Cat, Arowanas, Pacus, and a few others. But, what was most interesting were the monkeys jumping from branch to branch above the water. The Penguin display was another exciting exhibit with four different species gathered together in harmony; Gentoo, King, Rockhopper, and Macaronis. A large project for the near future; Kingdom of the Sea along with Mitch’s guidance are constructing a new Convention Center. This new center will attract new corporate business and larger catering events, but what is most exciting is the large aquarium that will be showcased at the entry way. A 10,000-gallon reef exhibit will compliment the room at center stage. Talk about a coral-a-holic mentality, Mitch is the prime example of one by all sense of the word. … More:
When you receive a new saltwater animal you don’t want to just dump it
into its new home. You want to give it time to get used to any water
parameters that may be different from the water in the bag and the
water in the tank. The basic idea of acclimation is that you slowly adjust the water in
the shipping bag of the animal until it matches the water chemistry of
your tank giving the new animal time to adapt to the new water
chemistry before release into its new home. Makes complete sense,
however, some ‘old aquarists tales’ have entrenched themselves in the
e literature and subconscious of aquarists and I think that these
ideas are at best a waste of time and at worse detrimental to the
health of the animal. Below, I hope to outline reasonable acclimation
procedures and present reasons why some of the ‘acclimation myths’
should be abandoned. There are many ways to go about acclimating new animals to your
aquarium. Here is my rundown on the basics for a new animal that looks
healthy in a bag of relatively clear water.
Float the shipping bag in the new aquarium or sump to get the water in
the bag to match the temperature of the tank (if the new animal is a
fish or coral please use a quarantine system to avoid introducing
parasites to the show tank, but for cephs and other inverts this seems
not to be an issue). . This should take no more than 10 or 15 minutes.
Remove the bag from the tank and either decant the animal into a
bucket (making sure to put something under one side of the bucket to
tilt the bucket so the water is deep enough to keep the animal
comfortable) or open the bag and clip it to the side of the inside of
the bucket. If decanting you will be doing the acclimation in the
bucket, if clipping you will be doing the acclimation in the bag.
Either way, the goal is to make sure none of the bag water makes it
into your tank because it could be ‘infected’ with parasites, but more
probably its nasty from having an animal sit in it for 24+ hours.
Begin adding tank water to the bag or bucket. This can be accomplished
with a cup, or you can siphon water from the tank with an airline hose
equipped with a valve or tied in a couple of knots to control the
speed at which water is added.… More:
Who would have thought that in my travels I would see two of the elusive Cirrhilabrus earli in two different parts of the country? Let alone five days apart! By now, everyone is aware that I traveled to Salt Lake City in Utah to see Syphus Wrasse Heaven up-close and personal. After that adventure (a great adventure it was) I traveled to Omaha Nebraska to see another tank loaded with wrasses. I was taken to Jim Gryczanowski house—home to Jim’s Wrasse Heaven—another wrasse Geek! Forget about being an avid wrasse fan, Jim is a hardcore wrasse fanatic and is extremely proud of his collection. This spectacular collection of wrasses are kept in a very specious 240-gallon reef aquarium, well covered to prevent carpet surfing. While many wrasse aficionados would have spend most of their time marveling over Mr. Earlei, I did not. I spent most of my time admiring Jim’s Cirrhilabrus johnsoni. I would have to say by far the nicest Johnsoni I have ever seen—its colors were truly breathtaking. When this small Johnsoni started to flash—Look Out—you would think it was altogether a different fish. Wrasse’s in his collection: Trio of Hawaiian Flame Fairy Wrasse, Cirrhilabrus jordani Pair of Earl’s Fairy Wrasse, Cirrhilabrus earlei Pair of Girdled Fairy Wrasse, Cirrhilabrus balteatus Pair of Johnsoni Fairy Wrasse, Cirrhilabrus johnsoni Pair of Lunatus Fairy Wrasse, Cirrhilabrus lineatus Pair of Pennant Fairy Wrasse, Cirrhilabrus joanallenae Pair of Rhomboid Fairy Wrasse, Cirrhilabrus rhomboidalis Debelius’ Fairy Wrasse, Cirrhilabrus adornatus Japanese Pintail Fairy Wrasse Hybrid, Cirrhilabrus cf. lanceolatus Naokae’s Fairy Wrasse, Cirrhilabrus naokoae Maritus Flasher Wrasse, Paracheilinus piscilineatus Tanaka Pygmy Wrasse, Wetmorella tanakai Jim’s 240-gallon reef display located in his living room is connected to a 720-gallon reef display and a 110-gallon sump in the basement. Everything about this system is custom. The tanks were built by Midwest Acrylics and the cabinet work was done to match the kitchen by a local carpenter. A Reeflo Hammerhead pump provides circulation to both tanks efficiently and a Tunze 6105 with a controller supplies additional flow to the 240. Water conditions are kept immaculate with the aid of a Reef Octopus XP8000 internal protein skimmer. Waiting for that magical shot! … More: