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Old 12/27/2011, 12:22 PM   #51
sweet d
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Success! My clowns are happy as can be and ate out of my hand today, which was fun. Ammonia is at .25, Nitrite at .5, no detectable nitrates. I have a fair amount of snails from the rock I got from Mike (about a dozen) so I'm going to stop in Milford and grab additional CUC. Good stuff!
why are you getting nitrites is this a new tank has it cycled yet? im not sure but i think nitrites are very toxic to fish and corals,i could be wrong tho...


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Old 12/27/2011, 01:34 PM   #52
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getting a little ahead putting fish in with ammonia present . patience is key .


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Old 12/30/2011, 06:10 PM   #53
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SG: 1.026
Ammonia: 0
Nitrite: 0
Nitrate: 20-40ish (hard to tell with API)
Temp: 78

I haven't gotten my hands on PH, Alk, or Mg test. I'm going to do a Ca test right now. The tank is really looking healthy already. Most of the coral that was on the rocks I recieved (GSP, Zoas, Encrusting SPS, monti's) are out in bloom. I broke a piece of the Monti off when I got the rock. I put it on another spot thinking it would just die off / float away...but it's attached itself and looks like it's got full color already.

The frags that I got from Frankyrivera are looking great. The candy cane coral has it's feeder tentacles out and is going strong. The mushrooms are fully open and the left-for-dead Kenya tree now stays fully erect and looks like the polyps may start to get some color back.

Sadly, two nice pieces I got from Ed Travers (A big Kenya and a big Xenia) haven't been able to keep themselves up, have shown no polyp extension, and don't want to do much of anything. I also can't get a hammer frag I got from Frank to extend, it just doesn't want to come out. I don't know if it doesn't like the spot it's in (medium flow, mid-level in the tank for light) or if it's just not ready.

I was at Petco yesterday because I was in Milford and wanted to see what the livestock was like. I did grab 2 peppermint shrimp to battle some very small aptaisia on one of the rocks I got from Ed Travers - these aptasia are smaller than the nail on my pinky finger. Well, sadly, I can't find the two shrimp so I can only assume they're dead. Unless they're nocturnal? I'm not sure, maybe you can help me out with that.

And the big no-no, I bought a Scooter Blenny. I know that, like other dragonettes, that they are big on pod populations. Obviously my tank is not mature in the least bit. Well the good news is that with a bit of coaxing and spot feeding in the last two days, he's nibbling on frozen mysis. I'm pretty happy with that, and we'll see where he goes in the next few days.


Since removing the faulty heater (so glad I baked my tank to 86 degrees three days ago) my temperature, even with an 11 hour photoperiod, is staying between 77 in the morning and 79 at night. This makes me happy.

My goals for the current time being are this:

- Purchase a Salifert Mg test (man these things are the expense king of test kits - 30 bucks? I couldn't find one that API makes)

- Test PH and Alk today or tomorrow

- Purchase an LED unit like the following:
http://www.ebay.com/itm/120-Watt-Aqu...#ht_6249wt_902

- Upgrade to koralia powerheads (I cannot afford vortech or tunze) remove larger Hagen ones, for aesthetics. You can move the flow left-right on these powerheads I have now, but up/down offers no customization which makes it harder to mitigate flow. I'm running three right now and I'm not really happy with the look or the feel.

- Begin a dosing regimen to maintain a 1300 Mg and 440ish Ca parameter so I can begin adding more soft corals. I am going to forgo SPS on this tank until I can upgrade the lighting and become far more comfortable with reefkeeping.

Here are some poor quality iPhone pictures. Please exuse my dirty, disgusting glass:

Scooter Blenny:


Encrusting SPS below, Monticap up top. You can see where it was accidentally fragged:


Frank's Kenya frag, which stands strong now and looks as though it may begin to regain color:



I hate my lighting, I want to ditch the t5's so bad. Looks like garbage.


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Old 12/30/2011, 06:16 PM   #54
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Oh and there's nothing to host my clownfish in...they made a sandbed in the front corner of the tank and both of them are always hanging out in there. So adorable, the bigger one (who I believe is female in tomato clowns) fans the sand around and makes a bed and then they both nestle there.


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Old 12/30/2011, 06:18 PM   #55
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getting a little ahead putting fish in with ammonia present . patience is key .
What Reefir said.


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Old 01/01/2012, 03:18 PM   #56
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Xenia is showing polyp extension and beginning to come back. I can also see that my giant red SPS (no idea what kind of coral it is) is showing polyps. This thing hasn't shown much for a week and started to bleach in one area. Orange digi bleached a little too, don't know if that'll come back. Hopefully it does.


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Old 01/03/2012, 07:10 PM   #57
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Today I joined the eel world with a roughly 8 inch Green Wolf Eel. Next on the list: Golden Dwarf Moray (waiting on 3 LFS to get one on their stocking list, first to find one gets my money) and then a snowflake eel.

The story behind this eel is that he was in Milford Petco about 7 months ago when I was into freshwater african Cichlids (mbuna, kenyi, etc). He was a small guy then, just under three inches, but he had his own display tank. I go to that store regularly to pick up dry goods and frozen foods, rarely livestock (especially now that I do marine, I limit my purchases there if any). Today was the first time I had been there in at least a month, and he was still there. Now I've been waiting for a GDM eel, so this guy caught my eye finally. He was originally marked for 150, then went to 75, then to 35. I knew that they were trying to get rid of him, so I offered 15 dollars. The employee gets the 'aquatics manager' who agrees and sells me the eel if I can catch him. With two nets I have the eel caught in less than a minute. Applause ensues.

I'm a little worried because they've been feeding him live minnows out of the freshwater tank. On par with goldfish, I'm understanding that this is about as bad as you can get for feeding saltwater livestock? Great. I asked the aquatics manager to feed him dry/frozen food, so they threw some krill in there. He nipped at it, but didn't eat it. I tried to coax him with a frozen silverside when I got him home, but he didn't seem interested. Probably too stressed from the move still.

I've read that this fish is actually a pseudochromis more along the lines of a blenny or dottyback than an actual eel. But what I have read on this site and others makes me feel that he'll be alright with my two big tomato clowns, which I couldn't imagine fitting into his mouth. Is he reef safe? I'm alright with him not being, he may have a clownfish snack or two but after that there's nothing in my tank for him to eat, maybe nip on some corals which I could easily move to another tank. I 'eel-proofed' my tank today with a tight-fitting eggcrate lid.

I've attached a picture here, rather poor as it is iPhone quality and my glass is disgusting. I'll upload a clearer, cleaner one shortly. His coloration is absolutley gorgeous, not dull in the least bit. Mottled with a very vibrant green.



My hammer coral and xenia are in nearly full polyp expansion now, looking very healthy. Mushrooms are getting bigger every day, it's ridiculous! Picked up a 20 dollar frogspawn coral at Exotic Fish and Coral in Milford today. Waiting on several LFS in the area to get in touch with me regarding a Golden Dwarf Moray so I can add that to the tank as well.


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Old 01/03/2012, 08:31 PM   #58
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You are going to meed a much bigger tank to support the eels you are planning on.


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Old 01/03/2012, 08:33 PM   #59
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you may want to relocate the rock to the left of eel unless you want gsp on all your rocks.


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Old 01/03/2012, 09:35 PM   #60
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I was advised by users in the predator end of this forum that several eels in a 55 would be acceptable. SFE and GDM to be acceptable. As long as I do not further stock it beyond that.

Will GSP really grow that fast?


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Old 01/04/2012, 02:01 AM   #61
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My daughter has a snowflake eel in her 56 column tank now. Its only about 10" long right now but I couldnt imagine keeping it in there once it was full grown. Im not sure where you read that a couple eels will be ok in a 55g but once they get a bit bigger you are most likely gonnna run into some aggression and territory issues. If I were you I would limit your tank to just the one eel. Just my opinion though.


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Old 01/05/2012, 07:32 PM   #62
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Will GSP really grow that fast?
yes.


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Old 01/05/2012, 09:55 PM   #63
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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LDXV4...ature=youtu.be

Me feeding the eel frozen silversides. Guy ate 6 or 7 today. Which is good, because he ate my scooter blenny and he'll eat the clowns if I don't keep tabs on him, lol


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Old 01/06/2012, 11:39 PM   #64
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Thanks to Scolley from the A.R.K. forum (Aquarium Reef Keepers of Southern Connecticut) for his generous donation of rock and sand. It finalized my aquascape. I was able to, using a chisel and hammer, break up some of the rock I got from Ed Travers and keep the corals on it but remove the unwanteds (aiptasia, bubble algae, etc).

I have what I would now consider my 'final' aquascape complete, as it looks great and has plenty of room for future coral placement. I already moved some frags and whatnot, and things look happy as can be. The corals Scolley gave me came out nearly immediately (several ricordia, zoa's, paly's, softies etc) and have beautiful color.

My eel is doing great. He's eating silversides like a champ and hasn't taken a shot at the clownfish. I know I'm playing the odds here, but for now I'm going to leave the clowns in this tank and see how it turns out. I may be in the position to get a 40 breeder in the next month, and if so I'd move the clowns out of the 55.

I'll post pictures in the AM.

Here's a video of my green wolf eel eating again, this time he's not shy at all and is going straight for the goods. So awesome.




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Old 01/07/2012, 05:07 AM   #65
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if you miss one feeding the clowns will be gone get them out before you loose them because you will


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Old 01/07/2012, 06:44 AM   #66
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+1 On what erbgo said, I could see him just getting a little more hungry one day and snacking on a few clown fish.


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Old 01/07/2012, 10:56 AM   #67
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Full tank shot. Sorry for the glare from the window, sun was just coming out as the lights went on.




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Old 01/07/2012, 10:40 PM   #68
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Tested today, Nitrates seemed high. I'm prepping water tomorrow I'll do a big waterchange on monday (probably 30%).

SG: 1.026
Ammonia: 0
Nitrite: 0
Nitrate: 60?ish
Temp: 78

I counted the number of coral colonies in my tank today. I've got 33 various colonies around the tank, be it a patch of zoas here and then some paly's there. To date, I've only purchased four myself (two of them today, a Duncan and Acan from Puppy Center and two from Exotic Fish and Corals - a zoa colony and a frogspawn). All of them are doing very well, extending polyps, and coming out. Most of them were included on live rock I got from Frank, Steve, and Ed on this forum. I love you guys.

I had my 'diatom' bloom on the rock wall about two days ago. Woke up to nice brown rock. It got darker today. I guess that means I should add more CUC.

I mentioned I stopped at Puppy Center today? Can you spot the new predator?



Call me cynical but I wouldn't be upset if I woke up to no clowns. The two eels are getting along so far, sharing a cave. The snowflake is slightly smaller than the Green Wolf, so I would expect him to be rather passive. We'll see how they pair, but they're fairly close in size so I don't expect too much aggression. There's no expensive livestock in this tank so if something dies or kills something else, I won't feel at a loss.


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Old 01/10/2012, 04:58 PM   #69
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this guy just talks and doesn't even act like he's reading anyone's posts. Your moving really quick there buddy take it easy, OK? My tank been setup just about a year now and things are just getting settled in. & tomato clown = eel food , just like your poor blenny.


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Old 01/10/2012, 11:23 PM   #70
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Thanks to BubbaBoBobBrain's advice I did end up getting the Snowflake to nibble on some krill. Hopefully he'll eat a full meal soon. I'm worried because everything I've had has eaten right away and he's proven a bit more difficult. I know I should be patient because Eels can go off feed for several weeks at a time.

I picked up another head of Frogspawn in Milford and a Toadstool Leather from Kdocimo90. Came home and the Toadstool, even with lights out, was in nearly full extension. Gorgeous specimen, and looks like my clowns were trying to hang out in it. The polyps were out while the clowns were nestling in it, which means maybe it'll host them. That'd be pretty cool, as it's sort of what I had envisioned with that coral.

I did a large water change (10ish gallons or roughly what looked like 20%) in effort to bring Nitrate down (it was testing at 40). I'll do another one within the week if needed.

And to JamesDean, I appreciate your concern as it is warranted but I have in some way addressed every single post that has been made in this thread. Whilst most people in this community may feel it cruel or uneccessary, I have been keeping fish for a long time (so be it not saltwater aquaria) and I understand the natural way things work. Eels eat fish, and it happens out in the ocean all the time. In freshwater I was keep a Bichir with a school of Dainos. I no longer have the Bichir but the tank with the Danio's still stands in my living room. Anyone would tell you the Bichir would eat the Danios in a heartbeat - but they all lived together for more than a year and I never had an issue. It just meant I had to stay on top of things.

The whole point of keeping an aquarium is to sample this taste of nature, and in a way manipulate it for your own means. We mix species from different reefs across the world that normally may not interact. It's the real reason domestication of animals ever happened in the modernization of civilization. It may be difference of opinion here, but I'm alright with that. If my clowns get eaten, I won't be heartbroken. I will be out twenty dollars. I don't understand why this is an issue, as people don't warrant the same reaction when a newly added fish destroys an entire CUC or nips corals to bleaching - they just solve the problem or replace the lost stock and mitigate the damage. Then the next step is to resolve the issue by either removing the problem livestock or managing it in a manner which allows the chosen stock list to live together. I feed as often as necessary to make sure that my eels will not go hungry in that manner. Any unforseen circumstances (vacations where somebody else watches the tank, power outages, etc) will be dealt with on a case by case basis just as every single reef keeper has done and will continnue to do (i.e. tank crashes, hurricane, wife windex-ing the tank glass, etc). The Blenny was my personal error in not feeding the Eel, and a mistake that was hastily resolved. This lapse was his first evening in the tank and the Blenny was an easy target as he buries in the sand and goes somewhat 'dormant' at night - easy target. The clowns are rather mobile at all times and I'm not worried about it. As well as my feeding schedule has been optimized to avoid any issues. And to be honest, the Blenny was in impulse buy when I was in the LFS to purchase Peppermint Shrimp (which by the way, I saw for the first time since purchasing two weeks ago tonight - they're still in there and kickin'!). I would think the Peppermints would get eaten far before the clowns. I consider my tank fully stocked with fish and do not plan to make any additions unless something happens such as adding a sump or upgrading to a larger tank. I am concentrating on coral at this point.

The only thing people have mentioned to me regarding this tank is the clowns with the eels, and the number of eels, and adding fish with ammonia present. And having voiced my opinions on the Fish Only and Aggresive Tank board on Reef Central, I am confident a Snowflake and Green Wolf will be appropriate in my display. I've already discussed my opinions on the clowns with the eels, but you can read numerous mixed stocking lists in the same forum I just mentioned where people have successfully kept fish (Chromis, Damsels, Clowns) with Eels. And as for adding two clowns when I had .25 ammonia? Where I come from they were called suicide fish - if they lived, great. If they died, they further contributed to the cycle. With the addition of as much live rock as I started this tank with, the ammonia and nitrite were at 0 within less than three days of adding those clowns. My tank went through the entire cycle in less than 10 days thanks to seeded and essentially 'precured' live rock.

This forum, C.T.A.R.S, has been more than generous to me. I have recieved Frag donations, live rock donations, and countless tid-bits of advice that have been invaluable. I can already list more than a half dozen members of this forum I have met in person and can personally thank within my first month of keeping Saltwater. It's something I should have gotten into long, long ago. I will most certainly contribute back to my community with things like Frags, supplies, advice, offering my things for use, etc - as I become more knowledgeable and experienced with saltwater. I've read books on the hobby for years but obviously when put to the test things are infinitely more surreal.

I'll continue to post my trials and tribulations of the hobby in this thread. It's my personal blog (even though now I realize there is a 'blog' feature on Reef Central) and it allows for input from a community. If I come off as inexperienced, it's because with Saltwater - I am. If I come off as hasty, it's because with Saltwater - I am. I know the rules, I've read the books and I'll try to beat the system. It may bite me in the ***, it may not. But it'll be a learning experience regardless. And best of all it's a fun hobby and it's what I like to do. If I have the money to burn on my tank, I'll probably burn it. I'm sure every member here can attest to that. I'll continue to share even if nobody is listening or reading, because it's personally fulfilling. Criticism and advice I appreciate, but disparaging comments we can do with out. Again, I'm lucky to live in a very active neighborhood for reefkeeping. Thanks again to every single C.T.A.R.S. member who has helped me (and will continue to) along the way.


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Old 01/11/2012, 06:57 AM   #71
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Glen I think it bothers people because a lot of them started out with a clownfish and you even said how neat it was that they ate out of your hand. More personality than a cuc. To you they're just feeder fish, but to others its nemo and they're wife and kids love them. To put it another way your feeding puppies to your pitbull. I'm not judging just saying what i see. probably shouldn't even comment,a lot of times comments like this make me look like an idiot.
BTW nice snowflake.


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Old 01/11/2012, 08:45 AM   #72
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Patrick, I never looked at it that way and it is a good way to put it. I can't say I feel heartless or I'm some disgusting animal, but maybe I don't have that form of connection with my fish lol. Valid point regardless.


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Old 01/11/2012, 09:00 AM   #73
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We mix species from different reefs across the world that normally may not interact. It's the real reason domestication of animals ever happened in the modernization of civilization.
gmate you seem like a nice guy, but man.. this just isn't accurate or correct.

In my experience, guys don't write out 6 paragraph justifications when they're confident they're right.

Good luck with whatever you decide to do, but man.. I don't know about this particular thing.


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Old 01/11/2012, 10:04 AM   #74
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gmate you seem like a nice guy, but man.. this just isn't accurate or correct.

In my experience, guys don't write out 6 paragraph justifications when they're confident they're right.

Good luck with whatever you decide to do, but man.. I don't know about this particular thing.
I am a good person and I by no means have intentions of harm or foul play with anything on these forums. It's all a learning experience.

I see there'll be no justification of my point. I hope nobody takes what I've said out of context or in bad faith. It's not the first time I've mixed livestock that could result in a loss with aquaria species and I guess it'd be no different than a zoo display keeping a lion with a lamb. My point about the domestication of animals is that humans keep and modify the normal behaviors and lifestyles of animals for their own means (for better or worse). How often do you see wild chickens? Horses don't naturally grow up in a barn stall. We do things that are not natural, shorten lifespans, and cause problems that don't happen in nature (wolves don't get hip dysplasia, but domesticated dogs get this problem all the time). So to change the behavior or do something as what I've done is not unprecedented in the hobby. While it may not be generally agreed, it does boil down to a matter of opinion. I grew up in a rural town, my mom kept farm animals and bred dogs. I've been exposed to the good the bad and the ugly with livestock, be it horses or fish. Doesn't justify whether I'd be right or wrong, just shows where I'm coming from I guess.

Eh, I'm done trying to prove my point though. I appreciate those of you who have listened this far.




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Old 01/11/2012, 11:08 AM   #75
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Gmate dont worry it is what it is right or wrong some people cant let go if we really wanted to stop the killing we would leave things in the ocean. We chose to keep our little peice of the ocean. enjoy what you have good or bad. You are a good person


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