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Down to One Marine Aquarium—and So Far I’m Loving It!

Residents of the 125 enjoying the new lightingFor quite some time, I had at least two marine aquariums up and running—a 75-gallon reef tank and a 125-gallon FOWLR tank. As regular Saltwater Smarts visitors know, that 75-gallon tank had become something of a thorn in my side. Originally set up 15 years ago, what was once a nice mix of various soft corals and a few large-polyp stonies gradually transformed into an unsightly mess dominated by green star polyps. Well, I’ve finally begun the process of tearing that tank down. Change at the speed of molasses!What took me so long? Well, as “Caribbean Chris” can attest, when it comes to making changes to my tanks, I tend to move at the speed of molasses in January. Also, I kept going back and forth on how to handle the livestock and what I wanted to do with the 75-gallon once I could get it up and running again. Despite the mess that tank had become, it still contained a handful of specimens I was loath to part with—specifically a sizeable leather coral, an open brain coral, and a few gorgonians. MORE

African Penguins Receive ‘Honeymoon Suites’ At The New England Aquarium

africanThe New England Aquarium is attempting to set the right ‘mood’ for its African Penguins. The Aquarium is trying to play matchmaker to eight pairs of African Penguins so that they will breed more chicks. African Penguins are the only penguin in Africa and currently are endangered due to factors including over fishing, climate change, and pollution. They are sadly expected to be extinct in the World by the year 2025 if we continue along at our current path. MORE

Tang reality

images (1)Many of us are familiar with the tang police. They exist on almost any internet forum and occasionally strike from within the walls of a fish shop. Their primary goal seems to be making sure no tang is kept in too small a tank, but often they end up belittling or badgering some well-meaning aquarist. In theory, the tang police are a good thing as surgeonfish are a species often sold as small juveniles, only to grow into large adults that need a lot of swimming space. I’ve found that often the tang police lack entirely accurate evidence and base their highly objective feelings on conjecture. In fact, when reading some responses from self-appointed tang police, I wonder how many of them actually keep surgeonfish.  MORE

Reef Threads Podcast #226

reefthreads
We’re back with more marine/reef/aquarium chit chat. This week’s topics include Rod’s Food, Reefapalooza, the MBI workshop, MASNA scholarships, captive breeding, and parenting. Download the podcast here, or subscribe to our podcasts at iTunes. Also, follow us on Twitter at reefthreads.—Gary and Christine

West Coast Jellyfish Invasion

 Millions of jellyfish are washing up on Washington and Oregon beaches. Velella Velella, also known as ‘sea-rafts’ due to their sail shaped fin, are all along the North West coast beaches right now. These bluish-purple jelly’s are rather beautiful to look at, but can scary to the average beach goer. Normally the winds keep these species from ending up on the beach. However, recent westerly winds have brought the jellyfish to the beaches. Luckily these jellyfish are harmless to humans, however, I wouldn’t recommend going out of your way to step on one. MORE

Orlando SeaLife Aquarium Welcomes New Sharks For Grand Opening

 Sea Life Orlando will be opening on International Drive in Orlando on May 4, 2015. Anyone who has ever been to Orlando knows International Drive is the hub of activity in the ever popular tourist destination. The Aquarium will feature a 360 degree ocean tunnel, a rockpool experience and an interactive talking aquarium for the kids. Three new sharks were just transported from the Sea Life Kansas City and San Diego locations. The Aquarium has an independent charity, The Sea Life Marine Conservation Trust, with money donated from every ticket sale.This aquarium should be an exciting and welcome addition to the Orlando attractions. MORE

Fish Are What Fish Eat!

Aquarists have a wide variety of fish foods at their disposalWith so many fish foods on the market these days, it is really difficult to know exactly what your fish are eating. They will chow down with gusto pretty much anything you put in the tank, but do we really know what is in their foods? When we go to the market, I am sure the majority of us read the labels to see what we are ingesting. But is it the same for fish food? Usually not. Fish food labels provide a breakdown in protein and amino acids, etc., but we don’t know the exact ingredients since the FDA does not regulate fish food. Take dogs and cats for example MORE

Texas State Aquarium Accidentally Kills 100 Fish

 In an effort to combat a pesky parasite that was harming the tanks, the Texas State Aquarium accidentally killed nearly 100 fish. This is very rare and upsetting incident. The parasitic flat worms in the tank were resistant to other treatments, so on Monday the Aquarium introduced a new medicine into the ‘Islands of Steel’ and ‘flower garden’ exhibit tank. The medicine killed all of the fish except for two. Many sharks also perished. MORE

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