View Full Version : Re aquascaping

Paul B
11/13/2008, 03:42 PM
This really should have been called "Catching engineer gobi"
I have been trying to get this engineer gobi out of my tank being he grew too large and ate all of my small fish so I built a couple of traps and caught almost all of my fish except the gobi I wanted.
I built a new trap today, put it in the tank and said
"what the hell" I don't have anything to do for a couple of hours, so I removed all the rocks, caught the gobi and stirred up the gravel.
It was time to aquascape and when I get in the mood I drag out the three diatom filters and see which ones are still working.
Two out of three isn't bad. I went through five of these things.
I don't know how you people have reef tanks with out one.
Anyway, I have been wanting to try something for a while so tonight seemed like a good time. I cut some old rocks to give them a flat side and I attached a flat plastic bast to them that will sit under the gravel to give it stability. These somewhat long thin rocks are the base for all the large heavy pieces of rock. Out of the 150lbs or so of rock, very little of it is touching the gravel.
My rocks are very large some weighing about 5 lbs and a foot long because I collected them myself in the Caribbean and Hawaii.
The rest I built out of cement covered PVC pipe.
For some reason I always have a five gallon bucket filled with rock left over that does not seem to fit. I still have five gallons from the last time I did this.
After I put the rock back I noticed I lost a gorgonian, it isn't dead, I just can't find it. I probably burried it while the tank was cloudy. I also heard a noise coming from the bucket with the extra rocks. I emptied it to find an algae bleeny. This fish was also forgotten the last time I removed the rock and it was in a bucket of water and rock in my workshop with no heater, food or circulation for a few weeks. You can't kill this fish.
The aquascaping is very drastic and I will take a picture when the water clears. I still have two diatoms running on it.

Mr. Brooks
11/13/2008, 04:01 PM
My uncle invented those diatom filters back in the day. Made a lot of money. Not sure why people don't use them anymore.

You should post some before and after pics.

Can't wait to see the final product!

11/13/2008, 04:06 PM
i never even seen those, very cool set up it really looks "real" i'm loving the bottle.. Nice Job!!

Paul B
11/13/2008, 04:54 PM
i never even seen those

There not usually that rusty.

11/13/2008, 06:10 PM
The new 'scape looks good so far! What do you have for fish these days, Paul? I remember reading that you were going toward a community of smaller fish, gobies etc. Always love seeing what your up to.

Leave the rust for aesthetics :cool:

Paul B
11/13/2008, 06:51 PM
There are about 25 smaller gobies along with the hippo, bangai some pipes, bleenies and mandarins. I really want to go with all smaller gobies though.
Some are spawning.
I retired last year and started a business so I don't have the time I used to to play with the tank. The new aquascaping is very open and I removed a lot of rock.

11/13/2008, 07:46 PM
<a href=showthread.php?s=&postid=13740475#post13740475 target=_blank>Originally posted</a> by thechad21
Not sure why people don't use them anymore.

Looks great. I have always liked the natural look of your tank. Keep it up for another 30. :)

I also love my D1. It is amazing what it will pull out of a tank that you think is pretty clean. How fast they clear a tank is amazing.

11/13/2008, 08:05 PM
You never cease to amaze us !!!

11/13/2008, 08:12 PM
You have been busy today haven't you. That is an excellent job with the way you have opened it all up. I still see the bottles but I don't see the can that I used to. I will have to have another look once it is all cleared.

I myself would have to think long and hard on just what to do with the engineer. Do you have an idea for sure what fate awaits him?

Again, a great looking tank Paul, That antler looking rascal on the right hand side is almost a perfect match for one of the antlers i have in my shop..lol

Paul B
11/14/2008, 03:54 AM
The gobi is promised to two people. I will have to see who comes first.
Are you talking about this antler looking thing? It has been in the tank from when we used to use dead coral skeletons to decorate the tank. I diden;t collect this piece, It was bought dead and given to me.http://i258.photobucket.com/albums/hh270/urchsearch/Codium007.jpg

Paul B
11/14/2008, 06:20 AM
I put the lights on a couple of hours early to see how it looks. I do like it as it is very open and has a lot less of the smaller rock.
The fish are not awake so I can't find most of them. I really hope the smaller blue stripped pipefish is in there somewhere as he is my favorite and easy to lose when you remove rock.
Mated pairs of them are not easy to find.
The mandarin is up early and giving me very dirty looks as the two diatom filters, I am sure desimated the pod population.
He just stares at the rock, then stares at me as if to say,
"if I was only 180 lbs heavier I would show you what to do with that diatom filter"
I guess I will put some corals back in there as there are only a few now that I am sure I made the water problem a thing of the past (I hope)

Sugar Magnolia
11/14/2008, 06:29 AM
Pretty cool Paul!

Paul B
11/14/2008, 07:01 AM
Thanks Sugar.

All cleaned up and ready to go.
(too sterile looking for me, I have to go to the sea and collect some mud

THat half dead gorgonian is coming along nice. It used to be just a dead stick. The other one I think is burried as I can't find it

11/14/2008, 08:29 AM
tank looks great, did you find the pipe fish?

11/14/2008, 09:15 AM
wow...definately looks like a long island reef :p

Paul B
11/14/2008, 09:39 AM
definately looks like a long island reef

Well most of my diving has been in the Long Island Sound and most of the bottles I collected there along with some of the water so I guess thats why it looks like that.
It's like a garbage dump biotope.

I diden't find the pipefish yet but generally he stays hidden most of the time until I feed them.
I hope he appears soon. :eek1:

Paul B
11/19/2008, 02:30 PM
It's getting better but it is not "dirty looking" enough yet
But I do love those gobies, see that guy in there?

11/19/2008, 02:37 PM
clown gobies are one of my all time favourite fish.
Even though they are sps nippers, they are a aminstay for me in any tank.

I love your setup, nothing like that Ive seen up here in the great white north.

Paul B
11/19/2008, 02:39 PM
There are a bunch of them in there

11/19/2008, 03:47 PM
Wow PaulB, that's a lot of work. FWIW, here's a good thread in case you need to catch something else (http://www.reefcentral.com/forums/showthread.php?threadid=707656). Although....I think you were secretly looking for an excuse to re-scape. :)

I wish I had a diatom filter. I've looked them up a few times recently but haven't pulled the trigger yet.

11/19/2008, 03:58 PM
Paul, I have seen your posts in the past and read a few threads, the tank is so unique! I have seen some comments about a dirty/unkept tank but your pics always look great and very different, in a good way of course! You certainly know what you are doing! I am originally from NJ, near the shore, love the look of the bottles- esp since you found them! Keep up the good work, and please continue posting pics.

Paul B
11/19/2008, 05:33 PM
Hi Mike, I saw that thread. I use a variety of traps and usually they work. I really wanted to re aquascape anyway. After a few years the rocks kind of settle and areas fill in. I like to get in there and do a major overhaul sometimes.

Kevin, my tank has been called a lot of things. I hear dirty a lot.
There really is no dirt in there at all. I believe the Long Island Sound water sometimes grows this red coating on the rocks but as you can see, it is subsiding now. In pictures it sometimes looks like cyano but I have almost none of that.
The gravel is very clean for 4 decades old. Especially after I stirred it up and diatomed it.
Thats the best part of not having a DSB. I can stir up the entire tank and re juvinate it. After such an occurance, the entire tank and all the inhabitants look like they have a new life. Everything comes to life and the corals (few that there are) expand immensly.
The algae disappears and the orp reading went up over 100 points.

11/19/2008, 07:07 PM

Paul B
11/20/2008, 04:49 AM
Yes it is pre school.
But I have had a tank since Eisenhower was President.
Yes there was a guy with that name and he was a President.
He was after Lincoln.
The tank still uses a reverse UG filter and always will. I hear they have this new fangled deep sand bed thing but I actually had one of those in the seventees. Can't say I liked it so I dumped it out and got smart.
Now I can stir this thing up all I want. I can turn it over if I like.
Eventually the tank will get to the point where it was but it will take a couple of more years. I think I have the problem solved to eliminate the gunk my water company keeps adding to my town's water. The LFS up the block from me also had the same problem as me with all their corals dying on the same day.

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