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Old 10/30/2017, 12:20 PM   #2801
Michael Hoaster
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Thanks sam.basye!

Yes, the gorgonian is purple with white polyps. I should have snapped a pic this morning, when the polyps were retracted. I just checked and they're all out again. I have a really good feeling about this one. It looks to be in a great location, getting great light and just the right amount of current. I think it's getting plenty of food too, which includes rotifers and cyclops. If it does do well, I look forward to fragging it and spreading it around the tank. I probably just jinxed myself!

You can see the difference in the pics? I was thinking the new, yellower light wasn't noticeable in the pics, but I guess it is. There really is a noticeable difference between the 5500K bulb I used before and this new 5200K. It was an adjustment but now I'm used to it. I think what's happening is, when I'm tweaking the pics on my computer, the blue is getting bumped up, making the pics look greener. Why did I go in this yellower direction? First, I knew that it was appropriate for a shallow water environment. But most important to me was to get a brighter light. By comparing lumen output, I found the brightest bulb they had, at 33,000 lumens. Lumen output goes down as Kelvin numbers go up, so nothing bluer was anywhere close to this bulb's output. So, I get brighter light with no additional heat, and a more accurate color temp for a shallow lagoon.

I pretty happy with the dark end, with all the red macros moved in. Hopefully they'll enjoy the dimmer light.

2800 does seem like a lot, until I look at my own posts - 2700!


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Old 10/30/2017, 11:08 PM   #2802
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I hope you have good success with the gorgonian. Seems like a pretty one!

Can you post an "as true to what YOU see" FTS? Curious to how yellow it actually is


When are you going to get more fish???


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Old 10/31/2017, 09:54 AM   #2803
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Here it is this morning, with no adjustments. I think it looks a little yellower than this. It may be my iPhone. I have it set on HDR, which combines three different exposures.

Funny you should mention more fish. I'm asking myself the same question! And the wife's out of town…


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Old 10/31/2017, 10:31 AM   #2804
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Hoaster View Post

Here it is this morning, with no adjustments. I think it looks a little yellower than this. It may be my iPhone. I have it set on HDR, which combines three different exposures.

Funny you should mention more fish. I'm asking myself the same question! And the wife's out of town…
Mind if i ask what macro has shown best performance/highest growth rate?

You inspired me to put some macro in my tank lol

Your tank is beautiful btw (and kind of eerie too)

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Old 10/31/2017, 11:52 AM   #2805
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Welcome Pandagobyguy!

Good question. Caulerpa racemosa peltata has been the fastest grower for me. I thought I'd killed it all, when I ran hypo salinity a few months back. But it's coming back from the dead! Ulva also grows very fast for me, but my snails love it, so it gets eaten almost as fast as it grows. For reds, grasilaria and grasilaria hayi both do very well.

Glad to here you're inspired to get some macros. They soak up nutrients and oxygenate the water, among other things.

Thank you for the compliment! I haven't heard it called eerie before. Are you referring to the dark right end of the tank? It IS kind of eerie - and irie…


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Old 10/31/2017, 01:18 PM   #2806
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Michael,
I did not know you were familiar with Jamaican jargon. Your tank is very irie means “it be jumpen man”.

Your tank is beautiful.


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Old 10/31/2017, 05:14 PM   #2807
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Today I broke down my QT and replaced it with a slightly smaller tank-20 gallons. Everything going in got sterilized. Filter media was replaced. Water will be set to hypo salinity for new fish. Since I have decided to use hypo, rather than medication, I have added a minimal substrate of sugar size sand and large crushed coral and shells, along with a large, dead coral skeleton. I seeded the sand bed with a cup of substrate from my display tank and added a little ammonia, to help start up the bacteria. The filters are running, but I'm leaving the lights out for now, to give the bacteria a head start over algae.

I'm determined to properly QT fish, without killing them. Seems like a simple goal…


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Current Tank Info: 180g Seagrass-Mangrove Mudbank Lagoon
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Old 11/01/2017, 07:05 AM   #2808
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Nice tank shot, sweet!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Hoaster View Post
Funny you should mention more fish. I'm asking myself the same question! And the wife's out of town…
Whatcha lookin' at?

Regarding the QT, I have a couple questions... Will the new fish go right in, or be acclimated? If you plan to acclimate them, what procedure will you implement to acclimate them? At what level of salinity or sg will you maintain your QT tank?


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Old 11/01/2017, 08:39 AM   #2809
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Thanks Chasmodes. Can you see a difference in light color temp? The pics don't look different to me, but I can see the difference 'in person'.

Mainly, I'm looking at getting another harem of royal grammas, but I'm also considering a few more barnacle blennies as well. I'm still looking at options for a 'blue chromis substitute' as well.

New fish will need to be acclimated with a long, slow drip, lasting 3-4 hours. I love the drip method. It's so easy. Just set the drip rate, by tightening the knot in the tubing, and let it do its thing. 1.008 sg is the target. If the new fish look good after 4 weeks, I'll slowly raise salinity to the display's level, over the course of a week, since raising salinity is more stressful to them than dropping it.

I really need for a quarantine treatment to go smoothly! So I'm going by the book…


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Current Tank Info: 180g Seagrass-Mangrove Mudbank Lagoon
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Old 11/01/2017, 09:12 AM   #2810
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I have never been successful using hyposalinity. Ended up killing a couple of great fish. Think I didn’t make changes slowly enough. I found it stressful to try it after that. I hope you will have better success than I did. Just go very slowly.


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Old 11/01/2017, 11:57 AM   #2811
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Welcome SaltyMember! I hear you on losing confidence in a method! I think different treatments work better for different aquarists. Hypo seems to suit me, but you may have better success with copper or the tank transfer method. Also, hypo doesn't treat everything, so you've got to have options, and a proper diagnosis. In my experience, once symptoms are obvious, it's too late, so it's a tricky situation. Do you guess at early symptoms to get a jump on it, or wait and observe more?

Prophylactically treating all new fish with hypo is an ounce of prevention. Most of them have just been yanked from their homes in the ocean. They are very stressed. Hypo makes the considerable work they have to do, to osmoregulate easier. So this important stresser is lessened, at a time when they could really use the help.

So it's a twofer! Ecto-parassite exploder AND therapeutic osmoregulation vacation therapy. That's why it appeals to me. Oh, and it's free.


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Current Tank Info: 180g Seagrass-Mangrove Mudbank Lagoon
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Old 11/01/2017, 12:06 PM   #2812
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Thanks for the welcome and the advice. I treat all my fish prophylactically with prazipro and cupramine. I know that method is not as politically correct anymore but it has always worked for me. I will have to do more research on hyposalinity before I try it again. I do understand the benefits of that method for the fish. Of course it being free helps also lol.


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Old 11/01/2017, 02:24 PM   #2813
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Thanks Michael. For me, with the 20g long, my best option would be to convert the tank to hypo while they're in the tank... I need to find a good way to do it slowly and efficiently. Maybe something like an auto top off but instead of RO/DI, use salt water.


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Old 11/01/2017, 04:42 PM   #2814
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Right on SaltyMember! If it works, why change?

Chasmodes, don't you need to exchange tank water with RO/DI, to lower salinity?

It's good to talk about this stuff. There's a lot of good info out there. I want my qt to be rock-solid and consistent, to build my confidence. It's pretty low with my recent experiences…

I bought a new fish, for a permanent resident of QT. It's a male, sailfin molly. Mostly white, with gold flecks. Mollies easily adapt to salinity changes and they eat algae.


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Current Tank Info: 180g Seagrass-Mangrove Mudbank Lagoon
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Old 11/01/2017, 10:59 PM   #2815
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I got a pic while the gorgonian's polyps were retracted. I went ahead and fead the tank, to see if it would react to it. It was back at full extension within a half hour.


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Current Tank Info: 180g Seagrass-Mangrove Mudbank Lagoon
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Old 11/02/2017, 06:55 AM   #2816
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Hoaster View Post
Chasmodes, don't you need to exchange tank water with RO/DI, to lower salinity?
Yes, that was how I did it before and will do it again, but rather than a bucket method try something slower, more automated, almost like an auto top off drop mechanism. Except, I'd have to speed up the evaporation by removing water every day, like maybe remove 5% each day, not enough to cause the siphons to stop. That's my idea maybe.

What you're doing with your new molly, I think is what I'll do with my killifish.

Wow, that gorgonian is gorgeous, and I love the placement of it! If it works out, will you add more of them?


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Old 11/02/2017, 09:06 AM   #2817
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I see what you meant now. Maybe remove one bucket of tank water, then use the same bucket, plus some airline tubing, to drip fresh water back in, over the corse of a day. Do that everyday until you're there. Technically, you don't need to take that long, going down in salinity, since it's easier on the fish. Four hours should do it. Going back up is when you need to go slower and take a week. After your experience, I can see why you'd like to go slower! I can't hurt.

It was weird, buying another molly, after having so many in the past. I considered a damsel, but they get so mean, it wouldn't be a low stress place for new fish.

Yes, I'm digging the gorgonian too. I wanted to point out the thinness of its branches. This is why this one moves in the current so nicely. Placement seems to be working out well, light and current-wise. If it does well and grows, it will need pruning, so I suspect I'd spread the frags around the tank, so I wouldn't need to get more. I probably just jinxed myself. I do have high hopes for this one. After recent experience with them, I believe this one is the 'happiest' of any that I've kept. It's in great light, and the current brings it lot's of feeding opportunities.


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Old 11/02/2017, 10:27 AM   #2818
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Have you considered any non-photosynthetic species for the dark side of the tank (since you've done OK with sponges)?

Also, the macros attached to your roots look awesome...so natural... people might think it's a real mangrove!


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Old 11/02/2017, 12:28 PM   #2819
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Have I ever! I had really hoped to get several 'show' sponges growing there, and I still do, but I'm finding it difficult to keep them alive long term. One thing I've read is that sponges need to be collected with the rock it is attached to, or they are doomed to die. None of the sponges I've ordered have been. But I'll keep trying. Another strategy I'm considering is just to buy some more Florida Farmed Rock. It comes with lots of sponges attached, so it's kind of a 'hack' but if it works, it's all good.

I'm in the middle of re-reading Steve Tyree's book, "Environmental Gradient", which touts natural filtration with sponges and other filter feeders. He also talked about particulate filter feeders, like feather duster worms and sea apples. Since my tank is still accumulating detritus, I'm looking into 'duster clusters' as a natural particulate filter. This appears to be the last piece of the trophic puzzle in my ecosystem-in-a-box.

So, yes, look for new sponges and feather dusters going into 'the dark side'.

Thanks Chasmodes!


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Current Tank Info: 180g Seagrass-Mangrove Mudbank Lagoon
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Old 11/02/2017, 03:24 PM   #2820
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I was thinking about non-photosynthetic gorgonians, but I think you pretty much answered my question. Very cool plan indeed. Maybe you can try some tunicates later on if all goes well.


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Old 11/02/2017, 05:54 PM   #2821
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I did try one non-photosynthetic gorgonian. It didn't make it. I think it may have required target feeding, which I am waaaaay too lazy to do. They are beautiful!

I do have some tiny tunicates that come and go. I think they fluctuate with my sodium silicate dosing and phytoplankton feeding.


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As many naturalists and environmentalists have suggested, we should set aside our arrogance,
our desire to conquer and control everything, and walk hand in hand with Mother Nature. -Walter Adey

Current Tank Info: 180g Seagrass-Mangrove Mudbank Lagoon
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Old 11/03/2017, 10:16 AM   #2822
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Cool tank. Not many people keeping seagrass! I've tried Halophila a few times but never had much luck with it. My flameback angels seem to eat it before it gets going.

A few weeks ago I found some Thalassodendron ciliatum growing on piece of coconut husk that was half buried in sand. Thalassodendron is different to other seagrasses in that it doesn't need a deep substrate. In Mozambique I've seen it growing on almost bare rock. It's been in my tank for 3 weeks now. Some of the original leaves are dying off but there are 6-7 new sprouts that are growing about 5mm per day. I'm not sure if this species is available in the US (seems to only be common in East Africa) but it could be a good one to try!

Not my pic but gives a good idea what it looks like:




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Old 11/03/2017, 10:27 AM   #2823
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Welcome Lord Blackadder!

No I haven't seen that one. Gorgeous! We pretty much only get seagrasses from Florida and the Caribbean around here, and even then, the selection is small and usually out of stock.

Good luck with it! I'd love to hear how it goes/grows, going forward.


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Current Tank Info: 180g Seagrass-Mangrove Mudbank Lagoon
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Old 11/05/2017, 07:19 AM   #2824
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Michael,
I am also very interested in NPS, but filter feeders in general. I have kept flame scallops for 18 months and sea apples for two years. By far, the Sea Apple was my favorite. Both move until they are happy where they are. In the case of flame scallop, they don’t like light and hide. Not so with the Sea Apple, one positioned himself/herself/itself at the peak of rocks in middle of tank. After stirring course substrate with big particulate floating everywhere from 25 year old Jaubert Plenum, the Sea Apple went to work. It was pure schronized art. With a circular row of tentacles, each with numerous capture cups on each tentacle. To ingest captured food, only one tentacle at a time can be inserted into mouth. Tentacle enter mouth, mouth closes enough to remove captured particulate as tentacle is withdrawn. The next tentacle with food is already curving downward as the just cleaned tentacle is removed.
I think I have a utube link on my website. I will see if I can post it.


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Old 11/05/2017, 07:31 AM   #2825
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https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=FDt8QTAp0Cs

Video is four yrs old. Tank was 20 yrs old at that time: 75G Jaubert Plenum on top with 30G mud/macro refugium on bottom.


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