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Review: Vertex V6 Return Pump

IMG 6354 300x253 Review: Vertex V6 Return PumpAlthough a key component in a variety of reef system designs, the return pump is one of those pieces of equipment that often doesn’t seem to get the attention it deserves. For many, as long as their pump is obviously running, it’s not something that is given special thought. However, when we consider that flow can ‘make or break’ a reef system biologically, and that a return pump is often one of the most costly items overall to run on a reef tank, we begin to understand that it is worth paying close attention to your choice of pump. For this review, we’ll be taking a look at the recently released Vertex V6 return pump.  Built around a highly-regarded and proven More: Review: Vertex V6 Return Pump

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Acid Patchwork Echinophyllia from Unique Corals Burns Up Our Retinas

dbe1Acid Patchwork Echinophyllia Acid Patchwork Echinophyllia from Unique Corals Burns Up Our Retinas
We’ve seen some pretty awesome chalices in our day, but this one is probably going to rank right up near the top of our list of all time favorites. Called the Acid Patchwork Echinophyllia, this rainbow colored colony from Unique Corals is totally different from the other multi-colored chalices that we’ve come across in recent years. Undoubtedly, there has been a huge explosion of out-of-this-world chalices, but this one differs from the rest of the pack in that its colors look like they were dripped onto the coral canvas. Most of the chalices we’ve seen have a distinct separation of colors, but the Acid Patchwork piece blends and layers the colors so much better. According to Unique Corals, this maricultured chalice has been in captivity for several weeks, maintaining its ‘”acid-etched” conglamoration of color’ under LED lighting. The price on this insane coral was set at just under $1100, but it has been marked as “out of stock” on the site. MORE: Acid Patchwork Echinophyllia from Unique Corals Burns Up Our Retinas

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Mat Roy leaves Living Color

10171300 10152349479978908 5062828833889193980 n 199x300 Mat Roy leaves Living ColorNews that Mat Roy, President of Living Color and co-star of Fish Tank Kings on Nat Geo WILD is leaving his position at the company was quite a surprise to me. Having worked with the man for years, I know it was a difficult decision for him to leave the largest custom aquarium exhibit builder in the country, a company that he spent 20 years building.    MORE

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5 Types of Marine Fish that are Reef Safe with Caveats

reef safe caveat 6 300x165 5 Types of Marine Fish that are Reef Safe with CaveatsWhen we say a marine fish is “reef safe,” we usually mean that it won’t eat the corals or other sessile invertebrates that we keep in reef systems. Using that definition, we can easily determine that, for example, the peaceful, planktivorous purple dartfish (Nemateleotris decora) is completely reef safe but the exquisite butterflyfish (Chaetodon austriacus), an obligate corallivore, is most decidedly not reef safe. But sometimes fishes fall into more of a gray area with respect to reef-appropriateness. Depending on the particular setup and invertebrate livestock kept, some species (or individuals within a species) may cause problems in reef systems. Here are just a few examples: Coral/clam nippers Flame Angelfish (Centropyge loricula)Fish don’t always have to outright eat coral polyps in order to prove problematic in a reef tank. Some have the proclivity to just nip at fleshy invertebrates, such as LPS corals and the mantles of giant clams, which irritates them and can cause them to remain contracted. More: 5 Types of Marine Fish that are Reef Safe with Caveats

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JBJ USA Releasing New Nano Protein Skimmer

f02bJBJ USA SK 45 Nano Skimmer JBJ USA Releasing New Nano Protein Skimmer There’s a new nano sized protein skimmer hitting the market really soon from JBJ USA called the SK-45. Ideal for tanks up to 45-gallons, this new skimmer was purposefully designed to fit in the rimless JBJ aquariums, specifically the RL-45, RL-30 and the RL-20. It has a total footprint of just 3.75″ x 3″, which also makes it a good candidate for other nano aquariums as well. As far as features go, the SK-45 uses a needle wheel pump with an adjustable venturi valve, a height adjustable outage pipe that controls the internal water level, a large column for microbubble removal, double media sponges, large collection cup, and a mounting bracket for rimless aquariums. On top of those features, JBJ is also offering a limited one year warranty and, more interestingly, a free media sponge replacements for every six months over a two year span. The SK-45 will officially launch in a couple of weeks, but if you can’t wait until then to get a glimpse at it in action, feel free to check out the video below. MORE: JBJ USA Releasing New Nano Protein Skimmer

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Reef Threads Podcast #189

reefthreads1 Reef Threads Podcast #189
This week we talk a lot about seahorses.After our unplanned week off we return to talk about seahorses, screen tops, cooling tanks in summer, and a new overflow kit. Download the podcast here, or subscribe to our podcasts at iTunes. Also, follow us on Twitter at reefthreads.—Gary and Christine More: Reef Threads Podcast #189

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Night-Diving in Curacao, Giant Porcupinefish

9a16Nightdive Ikelite 3 Night Diving in Curacao, Giant PorcupinefishGood morning from Curacao! Good news, we got more rain and our bone dry island is starting to turn green again, I can’t tell you how happy I am! The downside to the rain was getting stuck in it for two hours on Saturday while cycling around the island. I finally talked two friends into joining me on my long weekend bike ride and within minutes of starting it stated to rain! Yeah not fun! MORE

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Amazing Fluorescing Corals Seen During Red Sea Night Dive

 Coral fluorescence is one of the many mysterious things that draws aquarium hobbyists to reef tanks like moths to a flame. And it apparently draws a lot of divers to venture out on dangerous night dives as well. Armed with intense blue lighting rigs, the crew from FireDive Gear took to Masbat Bay in the Red Sea to view various marine organisms, and the resulting footage just blows us away. Demoed in the annotated short version above, the clip shows images of the corals during the day followed immediately by a video clip of each of the fluorescing corals at night. The list of animals featured in the video includes a Tridacna maxima clam, feather starfish, hermit crab, a handful of different fish, cuttlefish, octopus, and a neon green carpet anemone. While the video above is a couple of years old, we couldn’t pass up the opportunity to share its beauty with all of you. MORE: Amazing Fluorescing Corals Seen During Red Sea Night Dive

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