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Old 09/22/2015, 08:44 PM   #1
cksss
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40g Long Naturally sun-lit tank

Hi guys, I started with a dedicated macroalgae tank about 3 years ago to help grow enough pods for the mandarin fishes. And recently started anew with a semi-outdoor (Balcony) macroalgae in new house, no idea how it will work out in the long run but it has been working well so far

Here are the technical specs:

-40g long main tank
-10kg Arag-alive live sand
-Maxspect Gyre XF130 wave maker
-10W outdoor spotlight in display tank
-18W red LED light in sump for ATS
-Deltec SC1455 skimmer (tuned down, running it as backup!)


The algae has been growing well with natural light and the tank gets direct late-afternoon sun. The temperature can get as high as 31 degreeC.



And light hood for night viewing was built using outdoor switch and spotlight, the tank gets about 3-hours of artificial light everyday.




Converted a small part of the sump into ATS since there is a constant downward water flow. It is powered by red plant-glow LED light. The NO3 is at 0ppm and PO4 at 0.025ppm. I'm currently dosing Seachem Flourish Nitrogen to increase the NO3. Iron is also added every 2-3 days. This is also the refugium for macroaglae. Learnt the hard lesson after i introduced new specie directly into the tank only to be wipe out completely






This is the tank in mid-May 2015 just a month after cycling


And the tank as of 17-Sep 2015



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Old 09/23/2015, 07:44 PM   #2
Michael Hoaster
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Love that last shot! Very cool.


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Current Tank Info: 180g Seagrass-Mangrove Mudbank Lagoon
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Old 09/23/2015, 07:56 PM   #3
cksss
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Love that last shot! Very cool.
Thank you Michael! I'm inspired by your tank too


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Old 09/23/2015, 08:45 PM   #4
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Thanks! You must live in a tropical place, to keep a tank outside. Love that penthouse view! Love your aquascape design. It reminds me of Walter Adey's 120g reef tank, from "Dynamic Aquaria". That single "bommie" is so much more interesting than a wall of rocks, plus it's shape is conducive to water movement. Nice.


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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 09/23/2015, 10:15 PM   #5
cksss
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Thanks! You must live in a tropical place, to keep a tank outside. Love that penthouse view! Love your aquascape design. It reminds me of Walter Adey's 120g reef tank, from "Dynamic Aquaria". That single "bommie" is so much more interesting than a wall of rocks, plus it's shape is conducive to water movement. Nice.
Thank you! I'm staying in Singapore, its a tropical country in the far east. It is also surrounded by the sea and the nearest beach is at most 1-hour ride away There are pretty good diversity here, i've picked up some ribbon ulva but could never get them to hold down well in the tank Might try mangrove one day if i pick up the pods. Its always summer here so the temperature is really consistent Most of the algae were bought from LFS though.

Looks like "Dynamic Aquaria" is a good book i must read, Thanks!

I'm really glad the habitat are dealing with the weather well, here are what i have in the display tank.

One of the captive bred seahorse


One of wild caught mandarin, they are all feeding on enriched frozen brineshrimp and they are fat


The hitch-hiker red tux urchin who is tearing my algae


And the sump with the more algae. Waiting for the Caulerpa prolifera to grow larger before i transplant abit of it into the display tank. The purple Ochtodes is there because the hike hiker urchin is tearing it in the display And another Mandarin recuperating from fierce fight


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Old 09/23/2015, 10:52 PM   #6
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I got all of my Asian mangroves from Singapore. It's a beautiful country! I love your tank by the way. Definitely unique. I don't think Ive seen anything like it!


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Old 09/23/2015, 11:25 PM   #7
Michael Hoaster
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So you've got your mandarin and horse eating frozen food? That's got to make it a lot less of a hassle to keep them.


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Current Tank Info: 180g Seagrass-Mangrove Mudbank Lagoon
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Old 09/23/2015, 11:56 PM   #8
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Awesome! Thank you for your kind words The idea for this setup is based on the "Halophila’s Seagrass tank", really inspiring but i don't have seagrass yet so starting with macroalgae first.

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I got all of my Asian mangroves from Singapore. It's a beautiful country! I love your tank by the way. Definitely unique. I don't think Ive seen anything like it!
Yep! managed to train the 3 mandarin to feed on frozen They still nip around for pods so the setup does help in keeping up with the population
The Seahorses are harder even if they're captive-bred, they are so slow and picky, sometimes their feed would be snatched away by the many brittle star/nassarius snails and mandarin

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So you've got your mandarin and horse eating frozen food? That's got to make it a lot less of a hassle to keep them.



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Old 09/24/2015, 09:28 AM   #9
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Great looking tank. Nice work! I've been wanting to do a outdoor regional marine tank for years. One of these days.


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56g Column |Aquamaxx HOB-1 Skimmer |Reef Breeders Photon 24 LED |850gph Koralia (X2) | Maxspect Gyre XF130
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Old 09/24/2015, 10:33 AM   #10
Michael Hoaster
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The "Halophila’s Seagrass tank" was a great inspiration to me as well. It's amazing what can be achieved with a very simple system, when plants are the dominant organisms kept.

I just went back and reread the article, and I was surprised by how many fish he had in there-a lot more than in my 180!


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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 09/24/2015, 11:16 PM   #11
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Thank you! Looking forward to see how your 56g evolves

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Great looking tank. Nice work! I've been wanting to do a outdoor regional marine tank for years. One of these days.
Oh yea i was just digging through RC's old archive for that thread recently too, its a goldmine to us. And he had very little gadgets. These setup are so rare and few.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Hoaster View Post
The "Halophila’s Seagrass tank" was a great inspiration to me as well. It's amazing what can be achieved with a very simple system, when plants are the dominant organisms kept.

I just went back and reread the article, and I was surprised by how many fish he had in there-a lot more than in my 180!



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Old 10/11/2015, 08:56 PM   #12
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NICE!!
love it. great job. and the mandarin eating frozen HELL yeah = success.


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Old 10/14/2015, 12:08 AM   #13
cksss
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Thank you!

The mandarin and horses still enjoy the occasion nipping around for pods which are plenty with this kind of setup. I am now quite concerned with the brittlestars which i think have reached a plague level, they are now the biggest contender for food, actively snacking food from the mandarin and horses

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NICE!!
love it. great job. and the mandarin eating frozen HELL yeah = success.



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Old 12/13/2015, 11:12 PM   #14
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Long overdue update! The tank has evolved so much more than i can keep-up with the documentation

A repost of the display tank taken on 17-Sep-2015


and the tank on 22-Nov-2015


I experienced a massive die-out of the Caulerpa Serrulata probably due to lack of nutrient, I should have prune them down when i had the chance.

Also lost lots of Ochtodes. I think something is feeding of them. They have been growing well in the overflow compartment now though.



Fortunately there are back-up strains in the sump, these are what i've in the sump






I have also harvested lots of brittle starfishes to sell to local reefers. Feeding 3 cubes of frozen food everyday helped in multiplying these thing i think!



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Old 12/13/2015, 11:17 PM   #15
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Also replaced the single 10W outdoor LED setup with two 20W LED for better visibility in the day. They are now sitting on 5mm acrylic sheets. Its a very minimalist approach and it is also much easier to change the lighting pattern




Lastly, a photo of the little garden where the aquarium sits




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Old 12/14/2015, 12:59 AM   #16
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Amazing, amazing, amazing. Did I say amazing yet? Wow, amazing.

I must admit that my hands are a little sweaty imagining being on the balcony. I'm not crazy about heights..no phobia, just a healthy respect.


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Old 12/14/2015, 07:18 AM   #17
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Oh my. This! I must follow this! It's looks great!


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Old 12/14/2015, 09:26 AM   #18
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That looks great! Awesome colors! I noticed in the 'after' pic there is much less macro algae on the substrate. Is that from the die off or did you remove it?

Could you post a pic with the sun on the tank?


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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 12/14/2015, 08:07 PM   #19
cksss
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Thanks guys! being high-up have the advantages of getting good un-blocked sun and natural cooling with the wind

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Originally Posted by Michael Hoaster View Post
That looks great! Awesome colors! I noticed in the 'after' pic there is much less macro algae on the substrate. Is that from the die off or did you remove it?

Could you post a pic with the sun on the tank?
Both! pruned alot of those for sale but not enough and they decided to die-out en masses But hey, now that the substrate it clear, i've plenty of spaces for the red macro (dragon breath?) and i'm planning to transfer some of the Caulerpa prolifera from the sump to the display. I'll get some more photos of the tank in day time and post them over the weekend


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Old 12/15/2015, 01:23 AM   #20
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Oh
My
Goodness...
This is Wonderful. Seeing something similar to my imaginations is so great.

I Salute you, fellow reefer.

Many thanks for posting


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Old 12/15/2015, 09:16 AM   #21
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Hold on a second. You've been feeding 3 cubes of frozen food a day to a 40 long with no fish? Woa! Well the plants and the serpent stars seem to like it! Is there anybody else in there, like a grouper or napoleon wrasse?

Feeding so much usually leads to an algae problem. I guess you've proven that, with a healthy detrivore population and an established crop of macro algae, you can feed a ridiculous amount of food!

Do you have any thoughts on how you were able to do this? Impressed!


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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 12/15/2015, 05:08 PM   #22
cksss
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Thank you deepercon! this is stage 1 and i planning to populate the sandbed with seagrasses or similar looking macro. I'd also want to add mangrove which 'arc' over the tank, an inspiration from another thread

Quote:
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Oh
My
Goodness...
This is Wonderful. Seeing something similar to my imaginations is so great.

I Salute you, fellow reefer.

Many thanks for posting



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Old 12/15/2015, 05:16 PM   #23
cksss
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haha no way i'd do that. I've been feeding 2 cubes of frozen brineshrimp and 1 cube of mysis for these fishes

-a pair of mandarin (they mated and i've video if there are such research interest)
-1 x seahorse
-1 x tailspot blenny
-1 x clownfish
-1 x regal tang

The stars were getting too much and too aggressive and they out-compete for food with the mandarin and seahorse so i had to remove them. There is an ATS in the sump and the skimmer has been turned off for 2 months already. And the readings have been like NO3 10ppm & PO4 0.025ppm.

I had redslim issue few months ago with NO3 at 0ppm! I think they died after i started dosing KNO3 (redfield ratio balance maybe?). I'm still dosing KNO3 to maintain NO3 at 10-20ppm

Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Hoaster View Post
Hold on a second. You've been feeding 3 cubes of frozen food a day to a 40 long with no fish? Woa! Well the plants and the serpent stars seem to like it! Is there anybody else in there, like a grouper or napoleon wrasse?

Feeding so much usually leads to an algae problem. I guess you've proven that, with a healthy detrivore population and an established crop of macro algae, you can feed a ridiculous amount of food!

Do you have any thoughts on how you were able to do this? Impressed!



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Old 12/17/2015, 07:19 PM   #24
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Here are some photos taken on 17-Dec-2015 with the new additions

The skimmer has been turned off for 2 months already and i've still been dosing KNO3 to maintain NO3 at 10-20ppm. PO4 reads about 0.025 on the low range test kit. I've also started dosing Iodine on-top of Iron.




and the photo taken in daytime as requested by Michael. Its not gonna look as nice compared to the one at night due to the reflection from the bright background.



Closer up photos of the new weeds!



Spaghetti Weed - Liagora (i think?)



Galaxaura, i already have these in the tank, which was invaded by the Caulerpa no thanks to lazy maintenance.



Dictoya (i think?)



And an update on the Ochtodes which have been growing really well in the overflow! This spot is probably closer to 'intertidal' zone with high flow and semi-dry.



I never had luck with the grapes in the display tank as the regal tang has taken a liking for this algae. However, i've discovered that by planting it where the strong return-pump current is, the tang would leave it alone These are one of the fastest growing algae in the sump too, so the tang does get some algae treat from time to time.




Last edited by cksss; 12/17/2015 at 07:24 PM.
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Old 12/17/2015, 07:24 PM   #25
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I love the looks of this tank, it's so pretty.


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