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Juvenile Golden Coney, Cephalopholis fulva, Bass

ff05Juvenile Golden Coney 2 Juvenile Golden Coney, Cephalopholis fulva, BassHey gang, geez it’s 8:30pm!!! Talk about dropping the ball on the blog today, super sorry but I was so busy!! I took off to Blue Bay Resort with our friend Emma from Sweden at around 9:30am and spent around 2 hours doing a fun photo-shoot with her on the beach. I have been wanting to get more into photographing people and models (on land) and today was a perfect opportunity. We shot Emma holding beautiful conch shells, using Ikelite cameras, laying in the sand, on towels, with hermit crabs and on and on, it was super fun and I got some great photos to share, so stay tuned. Once I returned I met Carole Baldwin from the Smithsonian and her and I went for one last round of beach combing as she flies back to the States early in the morning. MORE

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Mummy Eye

MECHALICE 1024x739 Mummy Eye
The Mummy Eye chalice coral has been around the hobby for a long while but it is still one of my favorites.  The striking beauty of this coral and the bright pigments of the captive grown specimens can not be overstated.  This coral was grown from a seed fragment originally purchased from Atlantis and is one of my favorite varieties.  It is relatively slow to grow but the rewards are huge.  It is very hardy and can survive nicely in lower light areas.  The coral does require some space as it produces sweeper polyps that can burn almost any coral in its path.  This specimen has been growing nicely in the shaded area of a captive reef for a few years.  The back portion was removed for propagation about 6 months prior to this image and most of the mass removed has grown back.  The coral is a Echinophyllia aspera.

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Idaho Aquarium Sentenced For Illegal Trafficking

Public aquariums are intended to be places for education, conservation and entertainment. For any institution to knowingly advocate and participate in the illegal collection of display animals is a shame. It’s also a crime. Idaho Aquarium Sentenced For Illegal TraffickingThe Idaho Aquarium, Inc, was sentenced on April 15th in Key West, Florida for “conspiring to harvest, transport, and sell spotted eagle rays and lemon sharks, knowing the marine life were taken, possessed, transported, sold, and intended to be sold in violation of the laws and regulations of the State of Florida, contrary to the federal Lacey Act, Title 16, United States Code, Sections 3372(a)(2)(A), and 3373(d)(1) and (2), all in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 371.” The Aquarium had previously pled guilty to the charges and agreed to pay $10.000.00 in fines and 3 years probation as part of the plea. The Court additionally ordered that the Aquarium pay $50,000.00 to the National Fish & Wildlife Foundation, a non-profit organization. The money will be used to help to promote education, conservation and research of coral reefs and marine life in the Florida Keys. Two Former Operators of the Aquarium, Ammon Covino and Christopher Conk were sentenced to prison time, in addition to additional fines and probation, in December for illegally obtaining and shipping three spotted eagle rays and two lemon sharks for the Idaho Aquarium. Illegal trafficking is a serious problem and it is good to see that Justice is being served and violators are duly prosecuted. It is also good to see that the fines are going to go back to help preserve the Florida Keys.  MORE Source: Outdoor News Daily

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Reef Octopus Elite Skimmers Add DC Controlled Pumps to Wine Glass Bodies

4491Reef Octopus Elite 220INT DC Skimmer Reef Octopus Elite Skimmers Add DC Controlled Pumps to Wine Glass Bodies What do you get when you combine the elegant shape of a wine glass bodied skimmer with the performance and controllability of a DC powered pump? The new Reef Octopus Elite skimmer, that’s what. Reef Octopus has taken their Prime protein skimmer line and given it a big boost with the addition of a DC pump, marrying two of the hottest features in protein skimmer technology into one product that is sure to perform. The RO Elite skimmer will come in two models, the 220-INT with a filtration capacity of 530-gallons and the 200-INT for aquariums 400-gallon and less. Both models will feature the popular wine-glass body, which is comprised of soft curves that gently bottleneck bubbles into the collection cup, along with tons of other nice features outline immediately below. Turbulence Reducing Super Cone Body Solid Cast Acrylic & Machined PVC Construction Bubble Dispersant Plate Vented Output Valve with Adjustment Dial Controllable RO-DC Pump “Twist & Lift” Collection Cup Efficient & Quiet Operation Disassembles for Easy Cleaning & Maintenance As for individual product specs, the largest of the two models is the 220-INT. It sports a 16.5″ x 12.2″ footprint and draws in air at a maximum rate of 2000 lph depending on the DC 5500s Pinwheel Pump’s settings. The smaller model, called the 200-INT, takes all of the same features and crams them down into a 15″ x 11.2″ footprint. It’s DC 3500s pump has an air draw of up to 1200 lph, but like its big brother, these numbers can be dialed back to fine tune performance. MORE: Reef Octopus Elite Skimmers Add DC Controlled Pumps to Wine Glass Bodies

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Reef Threads Podcast #178

reefthreads1 Reef Threads Podcast #178

The Dragonface pipe fish that lived to 6.5 weeks. More to come from Kathy with this species.Renowned fish breeder Kathy Leahy joins us this week to talk about her long and successful history in the hobby. Download the podcast here, or subscribe to our podcasts at iTunes. Also, follow us on Twitter at reefthreads.—Christine and Gary Kathy’s Clowns MBI Workshop More: Reef Threads Podcast #178

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Don’t Let the Water Flow Slow in Your Marine Aquarium

water flow 300x169 Don’t Let the Water Flow Slow in Your Marine AquariumWe’ve mentioned several times here at Saltwater Smarts how the output of reef aquarium lighting gradually and imperceptibly shifts away from the desired level over time. But did you know a very similar phenomenon can occur with the rate of water flow in your aquarium system? That’s right! If certain simple steps aren’t taken on a routine basis, your aquarium’s water flow can very gradually slow to a crawl, leading to a variety of ill effects for your system and livestock. For example: Instead of remaining suspended in the water column where they can be filtered out, fish waste, uneaten food, and other organic particulate matter will tend to settle onto the rocks and substrate where they’ll decompose, promoting excess dissolved nutrients and detritus buildup in the process. Gas exchange will be reduced, decreasing the level of dissolved oxygen in the system. With no strong current to carry off their wastes and prevent detritus from settling on their tissues, the health of corals and other sessile invertebrates may suffer. Fish that are enticed to eat only when food is in motion and shy/site-attached fish that depend on the current to deliver food right to their “front door” (such as jawfishes) may either lose interest in feeding or find that meals are always just out of reach. Cyanobacteria, which favors areas of low flow coupled with excess dissolved nutrients, will be more likely to flourish. So what can you do to keep the flow going strong in your aquarium? More: Don’t Let the Water Flow Slow in Your Marine Aquarium

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AlgaGen’s New Live Feeds Program

b046buryqanu 300x225 AlgaGen’s New Live Feeds Program Healthy reefs depend on plankton, and fresh is always best. AlgaGen recently launched its Live Feeds Program, which aims to set up culture holding systems in local fish stores across the country. Stores that offer the new program will have live phytoplankton, rotifers, brine and/or copepods available to customers to feed their reefs or breed marine livestock with. Reef aquarists will now be ale to provide reef nutrition found in nature and elicit the natural feeding responses from all of the tank’s inhabitants. Don’t be afraid to ask your local fish store if this is something they will be carrying. Heres a video all about it: MORE: AlgaGen’s New Live Feeds Program

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Fincasters Episode 31 Drs. Foster and Smith Donate to Coral Restoration Foundation

 More: Fincasters Episode 31 Drs. Foster and Smith Donate to Coral Restoration Foundation

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