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Old 12/11/2017, 10:28 AM   #2976
Chasmodes
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Originally Posted by Michael Hoaster View Post
I have literally pulled out hundreds of sea hares! And there are more.
Wow! That is amazing. How many did you add or did they come in with macros? I'm curious about how prolific they are. We have some naturally in our Bay and I'd like to have some, but I haven't seen any yet. It could be that where I collect isn't salty enough.


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Old 12/11/2017, 10:37 AM   #2977
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I never added them. They hitchhiked in on something. It was fine when it was just one or two, but once they made babies it was waaaaay too much. I'm guessing they laid around a thousand eggs. Be careful what you wish for…


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Old 12/11/2017, 07:01 PM   #2978
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I'm still having a bit of a diatom problem. Late in the day, it builds up on the blades and starts pearling like The single molly eats a lot of it but she can't quite keep up, by herself!
I have been meaning to ask what would be good fish wise to keep the grass clean. I have heard that bristletooth Tangs are good but they're not found in the Caribbean. I wonder if C. Argi and the filefish would keep it clean.
It sounds like mollies would be good and to my surprise they're actually found in the Indian River Lagoon according to that website that I posted the other day.

Is it still considered a biotope if you try to recreate a lagoon but mix fish that are found in different parts of the Lagoon for example a fish that's found in more brackish water part of the Lagoon and fish that are found closer to the inlet but still in a seagrass setting where its more full strength seawater.

Jason

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Old 12/11/2017, 10:00 PM   #2979
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So you're going the caribbean biotope route? Obviously I'm stoked, but having been there for a while, I'll say it does kinda limit your options. You could call it a seagrass lagoon biotope (and not say caribbean) and you'll have way more options. Seagrass lagoons occur world wide. Just recently I came very close to doing this myself. Just a thought! Those shrimp fish are not caribbean…

Yep, mollies are caribbean, or floribbean biotope correct, and one of the best utility fish I can name! Their mouths are the perfect size to clean the grasses, as apposed to say, the red lipped blenny, which is the caribbean equivalent of a lawnmower blenny. Plus they are livebearers. They effectively turn algae into feeder fish! I bet a puffer would love that! They are also the only animal I have actually witnessed eating cyano bacteria. They work hardest for you if you don't feed them.

Mini strombus snails are also excellent for cleaning grasses. Indo Pacific Sea Farms is the only source I know for them. C. argi might help too, I don't know. The filefish might nibble at some epiphytes but they don't eat algae. I'm assuming you're talking about the aiptasia eating variety, which isn't caribbean. Unfortunately, they also go after worms, gorgonians and anemones.

Sure, I'd still call it a biotope. Look at mine: royal grammas are hardly considered a seagrass resident, but I believe you could find them there, hanging out by the mudbank. I've seen them in two feet of water under docks. Also remember the seagrass lagoon is the nursery for nearly every fish, so if you start with juveniles, you're good! I've taken a few liberties and the biotope police haven't come around to arrest me yet. I'm pretty close though.

My tank is brackish. I keep it at 1.018 or 25 ppt-the preferred manatee grass salinity. Fish, gorgonians, anemones and sponges all do great in it. Lower salinity actually reduces fishes' work to osmoregulate, making their lives a little easier. I doubt I will ever run a tank at natural seawater levels again. I think turtle grass does prefer higher salinity, between 30-35 ppt.

Hope this helps!


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Old 12/11/2017, 10:53 PM   #2980
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Lately it seems like every time I post something about my tank, it decides to change the thing I just posted about. First it was my sailfins not getting along. They spawned. This morning I mentioned my diatom problem. Tonight, when they are usually at their peak, they appear to be almost gone. I had halted dosing sodium silicate and increased phytoplankton additions, hoping the sponges and tunicates would suck up any excess silicate. Did it work? No clue! Sounds pretty smart though, doesn't it?

I hope you folks don't have the mistaken impression that I know what I'm doing. At best, I'm confidently guessing! (Bring it, Sammy!) To my credit, I'm obsessed with this stuff, so I read a lot. I'm heavily into it, but I'm no expert. I prefer fanatic, or weirdo, please. I love giving out advice. It makes me feel like a genius. I'm not. I'm just some dude, playing the dude… https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wfg1c8dyZYM

I really am having a blast, here on RC. I hope you all are having fun too!


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Old 12/11/2017, 11:10 PM   #2981
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How about eccentric weirdo? Haha
I assume you were prodding a response from me. Lol
You know I can't resist!

You need to quit d***ing around and add some more fish! Seems like that QT will never be ready...

I really like the biotope concept you have going on. Something about the natural look that your tank brings and the thought that you could actually find a spot that looks exactly like this in the wild is the coolest part for me.
If I didn't have to worry about the wife killing me over it, I'd have a few different biotopes, or local only type tanks!

I added the finishing touches on my new wall for the 30 cube tonight so it should be getting wet in a few days with plans on adding live stock Jan 1. Hopefully I'll find the motivation to start the new build thread tomorrow!


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Old 12/11/2017, 11:35 PM   #2982
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Right on que, sam.basye!

Oh yeah right, I could add more fish…The QT ought to be ready by now. Believe me, I'm jonesin' hard to. The funds are little tight right now, just in time for the holidays… So, I piddle around with more mundane stuff like killing sea hares and aiptasias-good times!

Thanks for the compliments on the 'tope! Yep the wives keep us somewhat in check. It's probably for the best… or maybe they're keeping us down, preventing us from becoming famous aquarium gurus, like what's-his-name…

You need to stop d***ing around and start a new thread, my fake wall brother! I guess you're still too busy making mad stacks. Buy ME some fish! Hey, are you going to do another traditional christmas composit image this year?


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Old 12/12/2017, 03:33 AM   #2983
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So you're going the caribbean biotope route? Obviously I'm stoked, but having been there for a while, I'll say it does kinda limit your options. You could call it a seagrass lagoon biotope (and not say caribbean) and you'll have way more options. Seagrass lagoons occur world wide. Just recently I came very close to doing this myself. Just a thought! Those shrimp fish are not caribbean…

Yep, mollies are caribbean, or floribbean biotope correct, and one of the best utility fish I can name! Their mouths are the perfect size to clean the grasses, as apposed to say, the red lipped blenny, which is the caribbean equivalent of a lawnmower blenny. Plus they are livebearers. They effectively turn algae into feeder fish! I bet a puffer would love that! They are also the only animal I have actually witnessed eating cyano bacteria. They work hardest for you if you don't feed them.

Mini strombus snails are also excellent for cleaning grasses. Indo Pacific Sea Farms is the only source I know for them. C. argi might help too, I don't know. The filefish might nibble at some epiphytes but they don't eat algae. I'm assuming you're talking about the aiptasia eating variety, which isn't caribbean. Unfortunately, they also go after worms, gorgonians and anemones.

Sure, I'd still call it a biotope. Look at mine: royal grammas are hardly considered a seagrass resident, but I believe you could find them there, hanging out by the mudbank. I've seen them in two feet of water under docks. Also remember the seagrass lagoon is the nursery for nearly every fish, so if you start with juveniles, you're good! I've taken a few liberties and the biotope police haven't come around to arrest me yet. I'm pretty close though.

My tank is brackish. I keep it at 1.018 or 25 ppt-the preferred manatee grass salinity. Fish, gorgonians, anemones and sponges all do great in it. Lower salinity actually reduces fishes' work to osmoregulate, making their lives a little easier. I doubt I will ever run a tank at natural seawater levels again. I think turtle grass does prefer higher salinity, between 30-35 ppt.

Hope this helps!
You're right options are limited but Caribbean tanks are not plentiful which is what I like. I have a 75 gallon that I'm going to set up as a Caribbean Rubble Zone biotope with the gorgonians, jawfish, angelfish, and some chalk Bass. According to fishbase the shrimp fish can also be found among the spines of the long spined black urchin and since my wife wants some of those I may set up the 55 with those.

Good deal about the mollies as they seem like a good utility fish. The only problem is I'm not sure if the puffer would go after them even though the diet of Chilomycterus schoepfii is mainly invertebrates.

The filefish I have are the Caribbean variety Monocanthus ciliatus. According to fishbase they feed on plants, algae, and small crustaceans.

Okay I'll call it a biotope and if anybody says anything I'll tell them Michael said it was okay, LOL. Being that you keep yours at a brackish salinity you could keep the seagrass Ruppia.

Thanks for the help Michael

Jason

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Old 12/12/2017, 06:24 AM   #2984
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Weirdos!: rollface:

If that was true, then I'm a freak on here LOL

Michael, you could rename your tank to a Caribbean/Panama Canal nearby lagoon biotope. Just cuz they haven't found the blennies on the East side doesn't mean that they aren't there or can't get there someday.


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Old 12/12/2017, 08:33 AM   #2985
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Cool beans Jason. Caribbean it is.

With the mollies, if you have no need for babies, just get all females. Otherwise, their population gets out of hand fast. They're an easily sexable fish. Great fish to have around, when you're going through the algae phase. One of the caribbean filefish does eat seagrass. I'm not sure if it's the ones you have.

It sounds like you've made your choices. Thread(s)?


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Old 12/12/2017, 08:45 AM   #2986
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Kevin, I humbly bow to your weirdness. Your oyster reef is waaaay out there!

The biggest temptation to go outside the Caribbean has been damsels. I now consider the blue chromis to be in the same boat as the moorish idol and sea horses-too complicated to keep alive. So I looked at some of the bullet proof damsels to stand in for them. But I couldn't do it.

I've seen some maps of the Caribbean include the west coast of Central America, so I'm not beating myself up too much on the barnacle blennies. I bet some have migrated east, through the canal…


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Old 12/12/2017, 10:04 AM   #2987
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...I bet some have migrated east, through the canal…
I think that is a big possibility simply because it's an open waterway. Plus, if they like to hang out in barnacles or other fouling organism hidey holes, there could be plenty of those found along the ships that pass through the canal. Also, barnacle blenny ship larvae could get sucked up through ship ballasts as what happened with the round goby in the Great Lakes. You've proven that they do well in brackish water, so they should be able to handle the salinity changes, I would think. I wonder what the salinity changes are from West to East along that canal...anyone know?


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Old 12/12/2017, 10:26 AM   #2988
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Cool beans Jason. Caribbean it is.

With the mollies, if you have no need for babies, just get all females. Otherwise, their population gets out of hand fast. They're an easily sexable fish. Great fish to have around, when you're going through the algae phase. One of the caribbean filefish does eat seagrass. I'm not sure if it's the ones you have.

It sounds like you've made your choices. Thread(s)?
I think most of the fish I have would enjoy the babies, especially my scorpions, plus any future fish. I have no idea how to sex them and did you acclimate yours or were they already acclimated to brackish water?

I know what I want but deciding what to put together and which tank to put them in is what I'm struggling with.

Should I start a thread for each tank or combine into 1 thread.

Jason

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Old 12/12/2017, 04:55 PM   #2989
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On sexing mollies: males have a much larger dorsal fin, and their anal fin is modified into a gonopodium (his junk). Since the males are always randy and chasing the females, it's best to keep them at at least 2 females for every male. That would be super cool with them in with your scorpions. You'll get to see natural hunting behavior!

To figure out which fish and which plants in which tanks, maybe drawing it up on a sheet of paper, or a chalk board or something would help.

Who knows on the thread thing. You'll figure it out.


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Old 12/12/2017, 10:18 PM   #2990
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Jeez, I've been working hard, trying to rid my tank of sea hares and aiptasias! I'm almost ready to get a frickin' laser beam!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=60AjI1pIzVQ


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Old 12/13/2017, 05:55 AM   #2991
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Too bad the aiptasias don't eat the sea hares to get rid of half the problem. Good luck eradicating both. Are the aiptasias sensitive to ammonia? I thought that I read that somewhere...


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Old 12/13/2017, 06:49 AM   #2992
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That IS too bad. It's possible they would, but the sea hares would need to be adrift in the current, rather than crawling. From what I recall, aiptasias can survive pretty lousy aquarium conditions. I was using ammonia to kill them, but it doesn't stop them from ejecting planula. That's a key feature of aiptasia-x-it plugs them up, so they don't spread, as long as you follow the directions completely. Berghia nudibranchs are the elegant, natural solution, but they are ridiculously expensive. I tried them, but like a lot of folks, I didn't buy enough to get the job done.


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Old 12/13/2017, 07:05 AM   #2993
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I'll be watching your progress in case my anemone species becomes a problem. I'm learning from you once again...

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Old 12/13/2017, 08:10 AM   #2994
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My 75 gallon has a bunch of aptasia that my wife wants to get rid of. They're not doing any harm so I kind of want to keep them as I think some of them have beautiful colors. They also help to control water quality.

What I need to get rid of are some gorilla crabs.

From what I understand those nudibranchs spread pretty quickly but you're right they are way too expensive.

Jason



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Old 12/13/2017, 08:16 AM   #2995
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Too bad the aiptasias don't eat the sea hares to get rid of half the problem. Good luck eradicating both. Are the aiptasias sensitive to ammonia? I thought that I read that somewhere...
I think that aptasia would eat anything that gets caught in their tentacles.

The real problem with sea hares is they are poisonous and can release toxins.

Michael,
Are the sea hares small, medium, large, or combination of all 3.

Jason

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Old 12/13/2017, 11:38 AM   #2996
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The filefish might nibble at some epiphytes but they don't eat algae. I'm assuming you're talking about the aiptasia eating variety, which isn't caribbean. Unfortunately, they also go after worms, gorgonians and anemones.
Micheal,
2 thoughts:
1) Get a filefish. Just consider it an analog of something carribbean-specific At least, I can say that it is one of the best fish choices I have ever made. I have seen it pick at a specific gorg's sloughing skin and it leaves Condy nems alone. On the other hand, it sounds like you enjoy zapping aiptasia yourself
2) Your gorgs and nems don't mind 25 ppt salinity. For my 'dream' build (mangrove/seagrass tank + mixed coral reef), how brackish would you go? I figure that growth of some coral might be slowed, but imagine that one would accept the tradeoff of lower coral growth in favor of higher growth in the mangrove/seagrass tank and go for ~32 ppt/1.024. Bad idea?

edit: I did find this http://www.mrsaltwatertank.com/terri...that-can-kill/



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Old 12/13/2017, 11:48 AM   #2997
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Ah yes, Grasshopper, now the student becomes the teacher… I loved that show!

Like anything else in our tanks, there is a right amount, and then there's too much.


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Old 12/13/2017, 12:12 PM   #2998
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Jason, how do aiptasias control water quality? I know they help to consume the food I feed the tank, but are their other benefits?

I was in denial, when I called my aiptasia infestation pretty. I got tired of seeing them in my pics, distracting from what I was trying to show off. I wouldn't mind one or two, but they ALWAYS multiply to plague proportions, and that ain't pretty!

Making adjustments to please the wife is not a bad idea…

After hunting them pretty relentlessly for the past couple of weeks, I now only have small and tiny sea hares remaining. My goal is to completely eradicate them, so none can mature and lay hundreds of eggs again. Most are in the quarter inch range now, but they grow fast.

Toxicity can be a problem with some sea hares and nudibranchs. The real problem with these particular ones is not toxicity, it's the fact that they are consuming a macro I want to keep, and they are throwing off the balance of the ecosystem.


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Old 12/13/2017, 12:41 PM   #2999
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Hey JZinCO!

1) I tried that. I had an aiptasia-eating file fish for a few months, as a temporary utility fish. Very cool fish! I named her Phyllis. Once she wiped out my aiptasias, she went after spaghetti worms, gorgonians and my purple condylactis. I waited a couple of weeks after there were no aiptasias visible, and removed her. A few days later, aiptasias came back. Peppermint shrimp also work well, but also go after sand bed worms. I consider worms to be VERY important ecosystem residents, so that leaves ME. I do not enjoy killing them. It's a huge pain, literally. I am however, getting some satisfaction from getting closer than ever to successfully eradicating them.

2) Nope, neither do the pods, worms, sponges and plants mind the lower salinity. I don't know how SPS, LPS and Softies would react to it. Also keep in mind Manatee grass prefers 25ppt, but Turtle grass prefers 35ppt. So it depends on the species. If you start with your pivotal species' preferences, then you can see what else would work with them. My guess would be that turtle grass is a better buddy for corals since it prefers natural sea water salinity.

Laterino Neighborino!


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Old 12/13/2017, 01:18 PM   #3000
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Jason, how do aiptasias control water quality? I know they help to consume the food I feed the tank, but are their other benefits?

I was in denial, when I called my aiptasia infestation pretty. I got tired of seeing them in my pics, distracting from what I was trying to show off. I wouldn't mind one or two, but they ALWAYS multiply to plague proportions, and that ain't pretty!

Making adjustments to please the wife is not a bad idea…

After hunting them pretty relentlessly for the past couple of weeks, I now only have small and tiny sea hares remaining. My goal is to completely eradicate them, so none can mature and lay hundreds of eggs again. Most are in the quarter inch range now, but they grow fast.

Toxicity can be a problem with some sea hares and nudibranchs. The real problem with these particular ones is not toxicity, it's the fact that they are consuming a macro I want to keep, and they are throwing off the balance of the ecosystem.
Aiptasia are great mechanical filters which in turn keeps particulate matter from breaking down and they are able to uptake nutrients directly from the water column. Their only downside is their ability to sting other live stock but in my tank that has not been an issue and I have some that are pretty good size. Matter of fact, I have removed some from the sand by hand, no gloves, and have yet to get stung.

Lol about being in denial. I get what your saying but I think some of it is due to us being programmed, for lack of a better word, to think Aiptasia are unsightly and evil. For example, would you be tired of seeing them if they were say a rock flower anemone instead of a glass anemone? I also get what your saying about then being plagues. Mine have not multiplied to that extent, maybe because I leave them alone. Maybe they prefer to uptake nutrients from the water and they multiple so much as a survival defense because most reefers strive so hard to keep water quality almost sterile, so to speak.

I know I'm weird! I don't settle for something happening I want to know why is it happening.

You know what they say "Happy Wife Happy Life!" I'm fortunate that my wife is letting me have a fish room and I am making the most of it. I may be pushing it too far but time will tell. :-)

If the sea hares aren't to big for it you could try removing them with a turkey baster to suck them up. Not sure how you are currently removing them.

Jason

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Current Tank Info: 75 Gallon mixed reef. Fish are a powder blue tang and a lightning filefish. Smokeless with some macros growing in the sump.
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biotope, caribbean, food chain detrivores, macro algae, seagrass

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