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Gil and Fin
10/31/2014, 11:01 AM
Good morning, all. I'm new to the forum and need some advice. I have a 20 gallon FOWLR and now I'm hooked. Like many of you I'm sure I have now moved furniture around and found a place for an 110 gallon reef tank.

In my 20 gallon I used Fuji live rock and had good success. I am now working with a guy who owns a local fish store. He was recommended to me by two other fish stores because he has been around a while, focuses on sustainable reefkeeping, and also does maintenance and set up. I'm comfortable with him.

He recommends Real Reef Rock rather than standard live rock. I'm not finding a whole lot of reviews. I did find a thread on this cite that was not too positive but mostly focused on the "false advertising" of the name ("Real Reef"). I'm hoping to get some input about the advisability of setting up a new tank using it over Fuji live rock.

Thoughts? Thank you in advance for your time.

zn00py
10/31/2014, 12:05 PM
This is a pretty good short article on the latest real reef rock which is now 4th gen

http://www.reef2rainforest.com/2014/08/06/real-reef-rock-4-0-closer-yet-to-the-real-thing/


I have the older gen real reef rock it is pretty heavy and dense.I am transitioning a variety of manado rock and tukani rock in my tank as they are more like and more pourous i find.The new 4th gen does look and feel different though

Gil and Fin
10/31/2014, 12:35 PM
Thanks, znOOpy. I'll check to see what generation he is recommending.

geckoejon
11/02/2014, 03:41 AM
i couldn't find much info on it. couple possible considerations....

i would recommend against getting it "already cured". i have read numerous post about people getting all kinds of unwanted hitchhikers using already cured rock.

second what is up with staining the rock purple?!?! seriously??? i would pass on putting a stained rock into my tank no matter what someone told me. i wouldn't take the chance on it leaching.

finally, why not consider the bulk reef supply reef saver rock? very porous, decent price, and has a bunch of good reviews already... i would rather go the safer route....

Cole.97
11/28/2014, 04:37 PM
Real reef live rock (the brand I'm assuming) is man-made live rock. You won't get any unwanted hitch hikers. Most of the live rock that is currently imported for our tanks is blasted off of the reef and is totally unsustainable. If I was going to buy live rock, this is what I would buy. In my reef tank I used lace rock which is actually a rock found on land. It has worked fantastically for me for over 2 years now.

E Rosewater
11/28/2014, 06:05 PM
I don't care for it. It's dense, expensive, and I don't like the color.

I like Caribsea rock, it's land harvested dry rock. Theoretically more environmentally friendly, no dead creatures, and no hitchhikers (for better or worse).

Also, it's cheap.

billsreef
11/29/2014, 10:48 AM
Most of the live rock that is currently imported for our tanks is blasted off of the reef and is totally unsustainable.

Got documentation of that claim of blasting?

Last I knew most non aquacultured rock was collected as rubble, and these days most rock in the hobby is aquaculture via terrestrially mined rock rubble being deposited on the sea floor near reefs.

devastator007
12/11/2014, 09:31 AM
I'd say if you don't want to buy real live rock, go for dry rock. yes, the "real reef" has bacteria growing on it already, but you can save alot of money and just add a bottle of bacteria if you are impatant. Also, as others have said, the purple color just doesn't look good. When I furst got into the hobby I didn't know any better and I got one of the reel reef rocks from my LFS thinking it was covered in coraline. wasn't long before I realized it wasn't, and didn't realy look right when compaired to actual coraline. Way over priced and not as good. Just use live rock, save like 80% on rocks, and add in a nice peice of live rock to seed it with coraline and fauna. The dry rock is sustainable ecologicaly. It's not like they are taking live rock from reefs an bleaching them to make dry rock.

Coelli
12/11/2014, 09:53 AM
I have some Real Reef that had been cycling with a bunch of "real" live rock in the same tub, so I wound up with a few hitchhikers (including a baby sea cucumber) but no pests. It makes up 20 of my 35lbs of rock and I'm pretty happy with it.

syrinx
12/11/2014, 10:34 PM
I'd say if you don't want to buy real live rock, go for dry rock. yes, the "real reef" has bacteria growing on it already, but you can save alot of money and just add a bottle of bacteria if you are impatant. Also, as others have said, the purple color just doesn't look good. When I furst got into the hobby I didn't know any better and I got one of the reel reef rocks from my LFS thinking it was covered in coraline. wasn't long before I realized it wasn't, and didn't realy look right when compaired to actual coraline. Way over priced and not as good. Just use live rock, save like 80% on rocks, and add in a nice peice of live rock to seed it with coraline and fauna. The dry rock is sustainable ecologicaly. It's not like they are taking live rock from reefs an bleaching them to make dry rock.


How is dry rock sustainable? are you growing more? The reality is much of the live rock from the ocean is coral skeleton based- and thus is sustainable- because it is growing.

Cole.97
12/13/2014, 01:15 PM
Got documentation of that claim of blasting?

Last I knew most non aquacultured rock was collected as rubble, and these days most rock in the hobby is aquaculture via terrestrially mined rock rubble being deposited on the sea floor near reefs.

I'm sorry, I exaggerated when I said blasted, although most non-aquacultured live rock is still chiseled off of larger slabs of rock. As syrinx said, most live rock is coral skeleton based, but the problem is that we are collecting it at a very fast rate. This is why you are seeing more aqua cultured land-based live rock options. Although our impact on coral reefs as a hobby is minuscule compared to all of the other problems, I think that we should view ourselves as stewards of the ocean rather than just takers. This is why I promoted purchasing the man-made live rock versus the rock harvested from the wild. Just my two cents and I'm sorry if I offended anyone with my previous post. Here's and article I found helpful that discusses the sustainability of Fiji live rock.

http://wwf.panda.org/?10626

dwebster86
12/13/2014, 02:26 PM
Yea I don't like the purple rock that isn't real

syrinx
12/13/2014, 04:57 PM
Most live rock harvested is rubble- look at the coraline coverage. It is broken off by nature usually- and if we dont use it, it becomes concrete or other building materials. If humans dont collect it it becomes sand eventually.

OnceTrueFalseBr
12/18/2014, 10:08 AM
Petland sells very porous man made rocks for 3.29 /lb so you get bigger rocks due to less density and more of them.

Thunderfan
12/19/2014, 07:56 AM
I really like dry rock from Marco rocks. Not taken from the ocean, very porous, nothing organic on it, fast shipping with great packaging so there isn't any breakage during shipping. My lfs sells the real reef but to me it isn't as porous as Marco and at over $7/pound compared to annoy $2/pound it was an easy decision

Mandrake
01/08/2015, 06:55 PM
+1 on the Marco Rock

AdamNC
01/24/2015, 09:34 AM
The LFS here has told me they get their dry rock from a quarry somewhere in FL. Can't remember the name of where but it's about a med density rock, a few nooks and so far I've been happy with it.

dinger28
01/24/2015, 11:14 AM
+2 on MarcoRock. Bought 100 pounds of it on 2 separate occasions and am absolutely loving it. So much porous and can't beat the price. :)

dkeller_nc
01/24/2015, 11:57 AM
This is a rather old thread, so I'm sure that the OP has already made their selection.

But to put my $0.02 in, and since this is the Responsible Reefkeeping forum, I'll suggest that if sustainability and low environmental impact are the primary considerations, then Marco Rocks/ReefSaver from BRS is the preferable option.

I'd say this primarily from the greenhouse-emissions standpoint. The limestone being harvested in Florida for reef-tank use requires only the energy necessary for extraction (quarrying heavy machinery, such as front-end loaders) and shipment and distribution. The source and the aquarist are fairly close together in a geographical sense, and the density of the shipment is considerably lower than rock that's shipped wet, so the CO2 used to produce it is about as low as it can go.

On the other hand, manmade substitutes are rather intensive from the standpoint of energy use. Other than power generation, one of the largest contributors to CO2 emissions world-wide is the burning of fossil fuels for the production of slaked lime, and by necessity one must use a substantial amount of lime if one wants the final product to be as close as possible to the coral skeletons found in natural live rock. Another common alternative (ceramic) is even more energy intensive.

Closed-system aquacultured man-made rock is even worse as far as the emissions are concerned, since one must use a very energy-intensive product in making the rock skeleton, followed by highly energy-intensive culture in a closed system. From this perspective, the rock-culturing operations off of the coast of Florida are far, far preferable, since the rock is mined rather than created from lime and other minerals, and power necessary for the aquaculture is 100% solar.

Having said all of this, in my opinion there's a very, very large undesirable impact from natural rock substitutes, which is the diminishment of the value of the reef to endemic cultures. The rain-forest analogy is apt; it's far better to have the local people garner significant income from small-scale extraction from the forest than to have the products that result from that extraction banned or restricted, in which case the forest is clear-cut for pasture.

Deinonych
01/25/2015, 02:26 PM
But to put my $0.02 in, and since this is the Responsible Reefkeeping forum, I'll suggest that if sustainability and low environmental impact are the primary considerations, then Marco Rocks/ReefSaver from BRS is the preferable option.


Agreed. I used BRS ReefSaver rocks in my tank, and they work great. Easy to work with, and I enjoy watching the coralline algae grow and expand over time.

josh0302
01/26/2015, 07:57 AM
Wait, so the purple stuff on the "Real Reef®" rock isn't coralline algae?

billsreef
01/26/2015, 10:41 AM
It's purple dye ;)

dkeller_nc
01/27/2015, 08:23 AM
It's purple dye ;)

Technically, and really deceptively, they claim that it's not "dye". Instead, it's purple pigment. As a woodworker, I can relate that the distinction is that a dye is soluble in the carrier that it's applied with, while a pigment is a finely-divided insoluble colored material that's applied with a carrier.

That's rather obviously a distinction without a difference, but it allows the company to claim that there's "no artificial dyes" in the product. :rolleye1:

ajespo85
01/27/2015, 08:29 AM
+1 on Marco rock.