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Whitereef's tanks over the years

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    Posted: March 15 2011 at 2:42pm

My first tank I owned was back in 1995.  It was a 55 gallon and was given to me by my brother.  He had run it as a fish only tank for sometime and was ready to get rid of it.  When I set it up it went into my bedroom as I was 21 and living at home still.  It was running a wet/dry sump with bio balls.  It was quit the adventure and I still remember buying live rock back then and it was 11.00/lb.  I only had a few medium sized pieces.  Around 1997 I tore down the tank and gave it back to my brother as I was getting married and did not want to move it to an apartment.

Back then I did not know much about what I was doing.  I did have large crushed coral for the sand bed, a few pieces of live rock, some macro algae growing, in tank air-stone skimmer, and NO fluorescent bulbs.  The tank was just setup based on what I thought looked nice and not so much from any knowledge I had gleaned from anyone particular.  There were a few books my brother gave me that provided a few pointers, but nothing in comparison to the knowledge base we have now.  I was successful for the most part, at least that was my thinking back then.

 



Edited by WhiteReef - March 16 2011 at 10:10am
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Richard

Former 47G Column Reef, Magna
20" x 18" x 31"H
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote WhiteReef Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 15 2011 at 2:43pm

Later on in 1999 I went out and purchased a 75 gallon.  It was setup for a few years on my half wall between my kitchen and living room.  While it was setup I used 4 NO fluorescent bulbs, HOB protein skimmer, refugium with sand only, fine crushed coral sand, and live rock.  The tank was okay, but I never built it into the wall like I had hoped.  However, during that time I had a tang that was out of control.  He would intentionally splash water out of the tank and it was causing damage to the wall the tank sat on.  The splashing forced me to move the tank to a different location, the front bedroom.

I remember moving everything and it actually turned out not to bad.  While I had it setup in the front bedroom I was able to witness my encrusting gorgonian spawn, clowns laying eggs, and a good growth with several different corals.  Also I did an upgrade to my lighting and went with 4 VHO bulbs.  They were a great addition and allowed me more freedom in the creatures and such that I could put in to my tank. At that time I also stopped using my protein skimmer as it was a pain to keep clean and was messy.  Also Mark and a few other people had moved away from protein skimmers, so I thought I would try it.  Without a protein skimmer my weekly 5 gallon water changes became more important.

Front shot w/VHO lights and no skimmer or sump
My monti forest
Insane lavender tang that splashed water out of my tank.  beautiful fish, just crazy.
Large orange monti in the sun.
Friends?
Gorgonians...and yes I had major issues with bubble algae
Gorgonian spawn...that was fun to watch
Before the end.  As you can see low on water and attention.
 


Edited by WhiteReef - March 16 2011 at 9:52am
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Richard

Former 47G Column Reef, Magna
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote WhiteReef Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 15 2011 at 2:44pm
In 2007 I made the choice to downsize the tank and move it out of the front bedroom.  The room the tank was in is isolated from the rest of the house, so I did not get to enjoy the tank as much as I would have liked.  Also to move it anywhere else in the house did not seem to fit properly.  Then I found the tank I currently have.  It is a 46 gallon tall/column tank.  So I built a stand for it and made it part of our entertainment center.  After the move I used some of the existing live rock and sand to start up the system.  Also I upgraded my lighting again to metal halide.  I found a great 250 watt system that fit perfectly over the tank.  It caused a huge heating issue along with the enclosed sump/refugium.  Most of the issues were resolved.
 
Dry and before the transition.
With all the stuff in and aclimated.
After a year still looking similar, just lots more coralline algae.
Picture of sump/refugium



Edited by WhiteReef - March 16 2011 at 2:37pm
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Richard

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote WhiteReef Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 15 2011 at 2:44pm
Then in 2009 I added in several pieces of live rock, sand, and critters from Tampa Bay Saltwater.  I love the stuff, but was never really able to get rid of all the pesky pests and lost much of the delicate life that came in on the rocks.  I blame much of it on the lack of a skimmer and not feeding the tank enough.  Right now things are looking much better as I am being more dedicated to keeping my tank parameters stable and feeding more often.
 
Happy boys ... even the one behind the camera.  This is all the stuff from TBS.
All the new stuff unpackaged and placed in the tank.


 


Edited by WhiteReef - March 21 2011 at 12:13pm
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Richard

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote WhiteReef Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 15 2011 at 3:00pm
Right now I am in the process of adding more corals to the tank and making things stable.  Also I will start up a new thread here soon to outline the setup of my mangrove 10 gallon tank in my office.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ptronsp Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 15 2011 at 9:02pm
I LOVE THE SPONGE. I have been wanting to get some sponge for some time. Beautiful!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote WhiteReef Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 16 2011 at 10:39am
I loved them too, but I could not keep them happy very long and most of them died.  All that is left is the orange fan, yellow ball, and yellow branching.  Currently I am contemplating getting some more from TBS, but ????  My biggest worry is keeping them happy, so atm I am working on getting my refugium setup to accommodate a protein skimmer from tcfab.  After that setup happens and things settle in I might make that leap.  Want to join in?  The price for them should be good (10.00-13.00) and then we would just factor in the shipping.  Also I will probably get some halimeda from him when/if I order more sponges.
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Richard

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote WhiteReef Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 21 2011 at 12:17pm
Just updating to add in the videos of things in my tank or were in my tank.  Add one to a previous post as it fits better there.

Cry I lost him...but he was a great fish.


Star These are one of the fun things I love to watch in my tank.


Dead The worms are kind of gross, but my boys and I love to just watch the fun life the lives in my tank.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote CapnMorgan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 21 2011 at 1:37pm
Love the pics of the gorgonian spawn. That's awesome to see in captivity!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote WhiteReef Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 27 2011 at 3:40pm

I thought I would add some info and later I will post a few pics.  My tank has been doing well for some time.  The pods have been growing like crazy.  I just hate how my anemones move around.  Since I started feeding phyto every day the anemones have been doing much better and the rest of the tank too.  Because I know my nitrates are a bit high and the refugium holds a large cano mat, I had Tyler build me a skimmer.  Right now I have not had time to install it or play around to see how I can get it to fit, but once I do I will update you all on it.

Also I have found that the alk in my tank has stablized after some time experimenting.  It seems like right now my solution of 1/4 cup of baking soda to 1L water dosed at 1/2 cup daily keeps it at 9.5.  I am still working on getting calcium to stablize a little better.  I dose 1/3 cup Saturdays and Wednesdays of my solution of 1 cup calcium cloride to 1L water.  My magnesium finally dropped to acceptable levels, so I will start figuring out how much and how often I need to dose it.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote WhiteReef Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 17 2011 at 11:53am
I have been having issues with hair algae and purchased a skimmer to help clean up the water. The reason I did this on my 46G is that there is very little sand in the tank, and I needed a more efficient way to remove excess nutrients. It was odd that not feeding my tank for several weeks would still result in a constant growth of hair algae, so I finally plumbed my sump to handle the new skimmer from tcfab. Unfortunately the sump does not have room for a refugium since I made the change.

I took out all of the sand, rock, and such from the refugium. When I cleaned out the sand I found a fragment from a clay pigeon. That made me really think that some of the issues I had with hair algae and red slim was a result of not screening the utah sand I used. Also I found several large worms. I moved the sand and rock to my 7 gallon while I make a final decision on what to do with it. Also my mantis shrimp made the trip to the new tank.

So far the new skimmer is working and looks good. Time will tell how wise of a decision it was to make the change. All in all I think I will be happy I did.



Edited by WhiteReef - August 17 2011 at 9:34pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote WhiteReef Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 04 2011 at 9:26pm
With how small the sump is and with the reduced space due to the skimmer I am still trying to figure out a way to get some chaeto or calerpa growing in it. Also I saw a pair or ocellaris clownfish at Fish4U I had to buy. They are doing well and I will post pics once I get a good one of them.

**pics added












Edited by WhiteReef - September 05 2011 at 1:29pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mark Peterson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 05 2011 at 9:29am
looks good. thanks for the historical view
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote WhiteReef Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 16 2011 at 10:56am
Some notes on the system. I found the manual for the skimmer BK Mini Manual. Also I had an interesting guest show up in my tank the other night.









Edited by WhiteReef - November 16 2011 at 10:58am
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Richard

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote WhiteReef Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 01 2012 at 10:00am
Just adding the tank shots from the other day.

The clam has been using the red millipora for sometime. It seems to be doing well. Also my wrasse that I hope will last longer than the other ones I have had in the past. Also you can see the pest flower anemone that chose to camp out in the middle of my acropora frags. So far it has stung my red milli, blue tort, strawberry shortcake. I have thought about killing it a few times, but have resolved to take a calm approach since I can't remove it.


This is a shot with all of the pumps off and shooting from the bottom up. Kind of a cool way to get a tank shot.


Top down shot.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Deluxe247 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 02 2012 at 11:00pm
What kind of worm(?) is that? The one swimming around. Looks like a large bristle worm, but I've never seen them swim like that.

Edited by Deluxe247 - March 02 2012 at 11:02pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote WhiteReef Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 26 2012 at 2:14pm
Well my orange female clown jumped out of the tank in the one spot I did not have covered. It is actually where they usually hung out at night. Sad day! I will need to get me a new one soon!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tfmreefs Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 26 2012 at 9:53pm
Thats the exact same thing that hapened to me. The one spot that wasnt covered just had to be where they sleep.... :(  on the bright side your tank looks amazing:P
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote WhiteReef Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 03 2013 at 2:03pm
Thought I would share some photos of my tank I took tonight using my macro setup.

Montipora (superman, orange, and green)


Frozen Tundra zoanthids


Green table acropora


Green hydnophora


Coco Worm


Derasa Clam mantle


Frog Spawn polyps


Tri-color acropora


Branching Gorgonian polyps


Green Palythoas


Green Montipora


Acropora polyps
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Richard

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote WhiteReef Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 03 2013 at 2:18pm
An update of sorts to my tank. I have been battling two different pests and I think I might be getting the upper hand on one of them. There was a long stretch where I was having cyano building up on the sandbed and rockwork. The things that I did that have slowly yeilded good results. First off I stopped using tap water for my top off. The next one I cleaned my skimmer cup every other day (this improved the amount of export). Also I tried the no light thing and it helped, but not for long since the stuff just kept marching. Along with everything else I cleaned the rocks with a toothbrush in the tank and sucked out stuff off of the sand. Along with that I used phosguard and started doing a twice a week water change for 3 weeks. Now I have scaled it back to once a week. Something else I cleaned up some clutter on the sand by moving a few frags up into my rockwork. So far it is looking better.

The other pest is one that I have not way to know if I can get rid of completly or not. It is a small snail that likes to act as a parasite on my snails. As a result I have lost a lot of snails over the last year or two as a result of them. Luckily they have not attacked my clam. I see them in small groups on my snails sometimes. The only thing aside from manually removing them it to try getting a wrasse that might eat them (not ready for that yet). However, the snail die off may have been linked to the cyano outbreak.

Also I had an interesting thing happen with my derasa clam. It was not staying on the rock shelf and kept falling off. I assumed it was unhappy there, so I moved it to the sandbed. That was a bad idea. The tissue that holds the two shells together was eaten by something while in the sand. Since then I move it back and for the past several months it has been happy, but the tissue does not seem to growing back yet. The nice thing is that it extends its mantle and looks happy, but it is not growing.
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Richard

Former 47G Column Reef, Magna
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