Category Archives: Industry

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Six Months With the Maxspect Gyre XF-150

reefs.comGyreReviewOn August 31, 2014 I met with the awesome crew of Coralvue at MACNA in Denver. Although I worked the show, they were the one booth I had to visit in order to catch a glimpse of the highly anticipated Maxspect Gyre XF-150 in action. Overall I’m not generally excited for most product releases these days. Many are subtle improvements on existing products that technophiles go bonkers over. But this thing turned my idea of flow upside down well before I had seen it in person. For years many of us had attempted to create gyre flow throughout our aquariums to keep detritus in suspension and replicate a natural environment for our animals. Sometimes it was successful, other times not even close. Regardless right off the bat I could tell this thing was a drop-in solution for any aquarist wanting to achieve amazing flow.… More:

Salt Speak – Episode 1: FishBit

In our 2015 outlook writeup at the beginning of the year, Jeff hinted at new media we would be bringing to our content stream, specifically video. Salt Speak is the first of those new features. It will be an ongoing series where I chat with folks involved in the hobby and industry to discuss a wide variety of topics.The inaugural episode focuses on FishBit, a new aquarium monitor and controller. I recently sat down with Nathan Levine, co-founder of Current Labs, to talk about how their product is different, BETA version testing, commercial releases dates, the aquarium automation segment, how FishBit could spark a whole new group of folks people interested in monitoring and automating their systems, and more. I hope you enjoy the chat! Let me know what you think in the comments below and be sure to share this post with anyone you think might be interested in FishBit. [embedded content] Learn more and get in touch with FishBit: Share this:

Weedy Seadragons Available to Hobbyists

reefs.comSeadragonColdwater Marine Aquatics is bringing in captive raised weedy seadragons (Phyllipteryx taeniolatus) available to the masses. For me this news is akin to the first time I heard Borbonius anthias coming into the industry after drooling over their pictures for years. I had the pleasure of meeting the C.M.A. crew at MACNA Denver last year. I can tell you that these guys are incredibly knowledgeable regarding their niche in the industry, seemingly offering only the healthiest animals all around. I asked C.M.A. regarding the rearing technique and they replied with, “Berried adult males are collected annually and the young are hatched out and raised in captivity.”… More:

Rabbitfish Fisheries Possible Model for Culture of Marine Ornamentals?

Photo by Leonard Low. CC by 2.0.

Photo by Leonard Low. CC by 2.0.

 Bagoóng is a traditional condiment for Filipino cuisine that is made of fermented fish or shrimp. Bagoóng isdâ, the fishy version, is fermented in brine for several months before it is finally prepared and packaged. This delicacy, which is typically used to enhance the flavor other foods, can be made in different ways with different types of fish. Especially popular is padas, a bagoóng isdâ that is prepared from the juvenile rabbitfish (Siganus spp.). A status symbol, it is customarily served during religious holidays. Vendors sell the specialty item in tightly packed jars in all kinds of shops and markets. Sometimes, the small fish are intricately and artfully arranged within the jar. For aquarists and aquaculturists, this would be just be an amusing factoid about one commonly kept family of fishes, were it not that intense demand for bagoóng padas products has led to a substantial fishery. Filipino farmers focus on several local rabbitfish species (collectively referred to as malaga or samaral), including Siganus canaliculatus, S. concatenates, S. corallinus and S. spinus. These fishes can easily sell for three times the price of common selections, so competition among producers is fierce. Today, in the Philippines, rabbitfish are a commercially-important fishery, contributing 560 million tons (with juveniles accounting for 60 million tons) to the total annual fishery production. That’s a lot of fish paste.  … More:

Aquaponics Fast Becoming A Preferred Method of Cannabis Cultivation

Photo by Ryan Griffis. CC by

Photo by Ryan Griffis. CC by

 Aquaponics is pretty simple in concept. Imagine an aquarium that is plumbed into a hydroponic system; fish wastes are mineralized by microbes and ultimately utilized by the plants as nutrients. Technically speaking, even a mangrove propagule stuck in the back of an overflow box is aquaponic. The benefits of this type of cultivation are significant. A major attraction for some growers is the ease with which the highly intensive method can be practiced organically. The taste of aquaponic foods (unlike that of hydroponicially grown foods) is said to be as good as its soil grown counterpart. Because there is no soil, pests are far easier to prevent and control. Aquaponics also dramatically reduces… More:

New Temperate Marine Species Set to Enter Trade This Year

Photo by Ed Bierman. CC by 2.5.

Photo by Ed Bierman. CC by 2.5.

 Temperate marine aquarists can expect significant increases in livestock selection through 2015. While most of the wholesalers have been bringing in a little bit more of the temperate stuff these days, the lion’s share of new species will be available through Coldwater Marine Aquatics. We have reported on some of their past shipments. Next week, the Oregon-based company will be receiving a shipment of European animals that will include, according to co-owner Stu Wobbe, “beadlet anemones (all colors), fragacea anemones, snakelock anemones, Corynactis viridis (12 colonies, 6 colors), lesser spotted catshark eggs, Sepia officinalis eggs and several large gorgonians (four take up a box by themselves.)” … More:

A School for Aquarists

aqsMaybe you’ve worked in a key position in a groundbreaking aquaculture facility. Maybe you’ve traveled the world extensively on killer dive trips. Maybe you have an advanced degree in the marine sciences and have already led some fine research teams. Maybe you’ve authored a well-received book in some area of interest. Hell, maybe you’ve done all of those things. But, you do not know everything. Far from it. Aquarium science is the consummate multidisciplinary field, and however deeply involved you get in it, there will always be new things to learn. Formal academic instruction is available for those who work in (or desire to work in) the huge, diverse and ever-changing aquarium industry. The small handful of institutions that offer these programs is scattered across the country. These different programs are about as varied as the industry they train for. However, the biggest and broadest among them may be the… More:

Study Examines Influence of Aquarium Fish Collector Preferences on Catch

Photo by Adrian Pingstone.

Photo by Adrian Pingstone.

 Generations ago, aquarium fish keepers may have seen themselves as sharing little more than a “pastime”. But, with the rapid growth of marine aquarium keeping that began in the late 1980’s, we came to see ourselves as participating in an industry as well as a hobby. Today, we hobbyists are growing increasingly aware not only of our stake in the aquarium industry but in global marine fisheries. This, of course, has all come in the wake of sometimes heated public debate concerning the impact of ornamental fish harvests on coral reef habitat. As we–consumers of marine ornamental fishes–continue to examine how our habits mold this industry, we should probably remain especially cognizant of current fish collection practices. Some speculate that in the case of fisheries management, it may be more important to understand… More:

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