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Reef Tank Diary
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12/22/02 to
1/5/03
  • I know I said I'd never get a bulb tentacle anemone again, but...... I was given a rose bulb tentacle anemone, and it looks like the fact that it was tank-propagated has made all the difference. The anemone appears to be doing well, and the clowns have moved in. The anemone crabs share the anemone but live under it, because the female clown has grown very much more aggressive.
  • A few weeks back I snapped off a vermitid tube that was encrusted with Porites, and glued the frag onto a Christmas tree worm rock where the original Porites had died out. The worms have been doing fine, but hopefully this frag will encrust the rock and embed the tubeworms as they grow.
  • The little black and gold Tridacna maxima kept falling off the rock it was on, so I've moved it to the propagation tray for now.
  • I haven't been able to do much with the new tank yet, aside from tinkering with an acrylic overflow box. I found a half-cylinder at an acylic shop, and am debating on whether to add strainer teeth to the rim or just use gutter guard. I'll probably go with the gutter guard.
1/12/03 to
2/24/03
  • Well, I've been lazy/busy again and haven't updated the reef diary in a long while... now I've probably forgotten half of what's happened this past two months. Work has been busy plus I was sick in bed for a few days... made me think of what happens to the tank if I can't take care of it! As it was, when I was ill, I dragged myself out of bed every day to add fresh topoff water.
  • The anemone crabs have disappeared. They might be hiding in the rocks, but I kind of doubt it. I suspect that since the clownfish don't allow them into the anemone, the banded coral shrimps got them when they molted.
  • The Porites frag that I transplanted is encrusting pretty well, so chances are it will encrust the whole Christmas tree rock as planned.
  • The little Tridacna that I moved to the propagation tray died.... I think it needed more food than I was giving it.
  • Clumps of Bryopsis have been appearing again, but they have been easy to remove once they've grown long enough to get a good grip on. The problem is that they keep reappearing.
  • I did a partial water change on 2/16/03, and siphoned out quite a bit of detritus from the sump. Gave the sump gunk to a friend for his refugium since it was crawling with little critters.
  • I've pulled out all the Chaetomorpha that I had in the sump, and trimmed the clump in the propagation tray several times. It still grows quite well, but now green filamentous algae grows on the surface of the clump too so I've been throwing away the trimmings or giving them away as tang food. Next time I'll just use the extras as mulch in the garden. I'm thinking of replacing all the Caulerpa in the algae tank and moving all the Chaetomorpha there.
3/1/03 to
3/11/03
  • Some of the corals needed trimming, and since a friend was having a bbq at his place and his wife's reef tank recently experienced a crash, I brought some frags over to help restock the tank. I discovered that a Sinularia dura that I gave them a year ago is now bigger than the mother colony that I have!
  • Patches of Bryopsis have started to appear again. I let the patches grow big, which made them really easy to pull off without leaving many stubs.
  • The Chaetomorpha was REALLY clogging the propagation tray again, so I gave it another good trimming. I also moved a Ricordea florida from the tray into the main tank.
  • The rose bubble anemone started stinging some neighbors, so I broke a branch off the Caulastrea and removed a baby Lobophytum and put them in the propagation tray.
  • The Myron Acropora started losing tissue at the base. I was all set to remove and frag it if the tissue loss spread, but it looks like it's stopped.
3/29/03 to
3/31/03
  • I spent a couple of hours trimming down the macroalgae in the propagation tray. I keep trying to remove every bit of the mini-grape Caulerpa growing in there, but it keeps coming back from bit that I miss.
  • I also had to trim a green soft coral (possibly a Nepthea) because it was starting to reach other corals and sting them. Part of my Red Sea Xenia colony got stung and disintegrated, and a small patch of Porites close by has lost half its tissue too.
  • Looks like the royal gramma is now brave enough to be out in the open more. I still see the blue damsel try to chase him, but the gramma holds his ground.
4/12/03 to
4/13/03
  • I've adopted two sea urchins (one tuxedo urchin and a short spined urchin of some kind) to hopefully help with the algae that keeps sprouting up. Thanks Pierce and Cindy and Mark!
  • Did a 5-gallon water change, and the gunk critters siphoned out of the sump were traded with a Reef Central member for a green tentacled Ricordea yuma.
4/25/03 to
4/20/03
  • Two Astrea snails were added.
  • Removed a small nudibranch that was possibly eating zoanthids in the propagation tray.
  • One of the polyp rocks seemed to be succumbing to some sort of white slime disease, so I pulled out the rock. The polyps had spread to adjoining rocks anyway, so I still have some healthy ones in the tank.
  • I'll be going on vacation for about a week, so I did a 10 gallon water change over the course of a couple of days, siphoned out as much Bryopsis as I could, and cleaned all the siphon tubes.
5/05/03 to
5/11/03
  • Got back from vacation, and it looks like the tank is just fine except for the fact that Dad forgot to add topoff water that day (and possibly a couple of other days as well) and the return pump was blowing clouds of bubbles into the tank because the water level in the sump had dropped to low. The overflow box's siphon tube was full off air and siphon was about to break! It took a few gallons of fresh water to bring things back to normal. I also had to pull out a cupful of Bryopsis algae.
  • The tank has been featured in Reef Central as Tank of the Month for May 2003! The article can be found at Reefkeeping.com.
  • I traded a couple of frags with Old Yeller Tang from Reef Central at the MASLAC frag swap for a tigertail cucumber and a small branching frogspawn (green tentacles with pink tips). Yes, I had room for it!!!!!
  • One of the tuxedo urchins ate part of the ribbon gorgonian, while the other tuxedo urchin pulled off some of the zoathids from the tank's left wall while it was eating the coralline algae growing there.
  • One of the 50/50 lights (lamp #4) with an actinic because the ends were growing dark.
5/27/03
  • Well, I should've paid more attention to the tank, because the zoanthids covering the powerhead didn't like the light change and a major portion of it got burned and rotted away! I spent some time today peeling off mushy polyps, then rinsing with fresh water and potassium iodide solution.
  • I also did a partial water change, trimmed most of the algae in the propagation tray, and pulled off as much Bryopsis as I could.
6/15/03 to
6/18/03
  • I cut my thumb pretty badly on the 6th, so I wasn't able to clean the tank. This meant that the tank went uncleaned for two weeks, and the glass was so covered with algae that I could barely see through it. I really need to get more snails. There were also some pretty big clumps of Bryopsis everywhere. I only got to clean things up on the 15th.
  • The polyps on the powerhead have all died off, so it's back to square one with that. I'm worrying that the disease might spread to other zoanthids.
  • Lamp #3 burned out, so it was replaced with a Coralife 40-watt 50/50 lamp.
6/19/03 to
1/17/04

Boy, have I gotten slack! It's been about six months since the last time I've updated this page and now I've forgotten to log down all sorts of stuff.

  • Some time this winter the kitchen got invaded by ants, and my mom tried spraying the kitchen with insecticide. Unfortunately the fumes probably reached the tank because within the next few weeks I lost: the larg scarlet serpent star, the Turbinaria colony that I've regrown from a half-inch nub (waaaah!), several Sinularia colonies, and several zoanthid colonies, and all my urchins. Oddly enough, the cukes, blue Linckia and brittle stars didn't suffer.
  • The die-off allowed me to move some stuff around, giving the remaining corals more room. I also pulled out as much of the Bryopsis that I could, but the Bryopsis didn't get under control until I added a small foxface.
  • I've finally set up the new tank! It took forever for me to get the new stand built, and to figure out exactly how I wanted things, but the new saltwater is mixing now as I type this.
1/18/04 to
2/21/04
  • When the new tank was filled, I started moving in some extra pieces of live rock that I had in my old sump. I also sunk the entire refugium into the new sump.
  • I stared adding some snails and small corals when the pods and other critters from the refugium appeared to be thriving.
  • I moved all the stuff from the old tank to the new one on 2/15/04. No casualties except for the royal gramma, which didn't react well when being acclimated, then went into shock after something bit half his tail off once he was put in the tank.
  • One week later, everything seems to be thriving. I spent 2/21/04 removing some accumulated detritus from the sump and the new tank, and pulling out some remaining clumps of Bryopsis. Also did a 5-gallon water change.
2/23/04 to
2/26/04
  • Some friends of mine from MASLAC joined me in doing a group buy from Reeftopia. Today I got my order: three flower anemones Phymanthus crucifer (including an orange one), a royal gramma, an emerald crab, and a couple of spotted anemone shrimp Periclimenes yucatanicus. I definitely have a female (she released some larvae) and the one with bigger claws might be a male, but they won't share an anemone so I wouldn't call them a pair... yet!
  • When I first introduced the shrimp to the main tank, they wouldn't go into the anemones. I ended up putting a Condylactis and Phymanthus in the refugium, and put the shrimp in there to allow them to adjust to the anemones where the flow wouldn't wash them away where the fish might nab them. I might just keep them there with the anemones, but I'll have to upgrade the lighting over the refugium.
3/5/04 to
3/6/04
  • Once the anemone shrimp seemed to be staying in their anemones, I moved them all into the main tank.
  • New additions on 3/6/04: a coral beauty and a rock with some orange Montipora capricornis growing on it. Both were from somebody who was selling off his tank, and originally I wanted just the coral beauty but when I saw the acropora I couldn't resist! Of course, it broke into a gajillion pieces before I got it home but the base still has nice growths on it, and I have a bunch of extra frags now.
  • I was planning to break off part of the rock with the Montipora colony attached and put just that in the main tank and just have the extra rock in my refugium, but with a bit of shifting I managed to fit the whole rock and coral in the main tank.
  • The female tomato clown looked a bit beat up after I got the monti rock in place. It's possible that she got trapped between rocks while I was shifting things around, or maybe she already got into a fight with the coral beauty.
3/7/04
  • AAAAGGGGHHH, the female clown and the coral beauty really were beating each other up! The coral beauty has several badly torn fins now, and has taken shelter in a cave. The clown is keeping her distance for now, but she keeps making threatening moves at him. I've been rubberbanding a bit of nori on a rock for the coral beauty to nibble on.
  • The blue damsel's eye is bulging out quite a bit again. She first had the pop eye right after she was moved to the new tank, probably due to some injury. I hope this doesn't mean it's a chronic problem with her now.
4/1/04 to
4/6/04
  • I went out of town for almost two weeks, and the tank made it through just fine thanks to the care of my brother Nathan. Corals have visibly grown! The coral beauty is now swimming around and not fighting with the clown. He's been picking on my Christmas tree worms though! I had to move the colony to where the angel seldom goes, to minimize the nipping.
  • I sold and traded some extra zoanthid frags at a frag swap held locally, and brought home a lot of new corals. Thanks to: Brian, Greg, Pablito, Pierce, Ted, Yvonne, and everybody who bought frags from me.
  • From Brian I got several Acropora frags and a couple of pink Seriatopora frags.
  • Greg gave me a green Pavona colony, and several Montipora digitata frags.
  • Ted gave me some green Pocillopora in exchange for some of my yellow and pink..
  • Yvonne gave me some pink Pocillopora frags.
  • Pierce gave me two huge chunks of mysis in exchange for some of the green Pocillopora.
  • Pablito gave me a chunk of frozen cyclops in exchange for an orange Montipora capricornis frag.
  • All the frags were mounted using cyanoacrylate gel glue.
4/10/04 to
4/13/04
  • Installed a SEIO pump that I won at the MASLAC meeting! The pump sure pushes water well, without blasting everything in its path out of the way.
  • Added a small bubbletip anemone (since I'm using metal halide now!), an anemone crab, and four small tridacna clams.
5/1/04 to
5/3/04
  • DavidP from MASLAC gave me a receded Tubastrea (he saw my colonies and figured I can nurse the receded one back to health... we'll see!) and some Ricordea yuma.
  • My brother built me a canopy that hangs above the tank. Now I've added two 40-watt actinics to the metal halide.
5/8/04 to
5/30/04
  • Added a small bluish Acropora frag purchased from Steve Garrett at the MASLAC meeting.
  • I'm babysitting three yellow damsels, a bar goby, a maroon clown and a blue tang in my refugium. So far they don't seem to be making a dent in the pod population. The tang doesn't seem to be eating much of the algae either.
  • I added a new foxface.
6/1/04 to
7/25/04
  • Calcium reactor's hoooked up! The reactor is a home-made unit built at a MASLAC workshop.
  • I also built a limewater reactor to counteract the drop in pH that the calcium reactor is causing. The limewater reactor is a modified Sanders protien skimmer, with a both the output and input connected to a MaxiJet powerhead. Now all I need is automatic freshwater topoff.
  • One new iridescent blue Tridacna crocea added, purchase from Steve Garrett at the last MASLAC meeting. I just couldn't resist.
  • Two urchins have been added, to hopefully eat the brown wafer algae that's spreading on a few rocks.
  • The yellow watchman goby pair has laid eggs where I can actually see them! Usually they hide the eggs inside a cave but a couple of brittle stars have taken over their cave so they've attached the egg mass under a ledge instead.
7/26/04 to
9/30/04
  • New addtions from Reeftopia: Two neon gobies, an orange sponge with symbiotic yellow polyps, a yellow non-photosynthetic gorgonian, a bunch of astrea snails, a bunch of blue-legged and scarlet hermit crabs, some small emerald crabs, and two small colonies of blue zoanthids.
  • I added a layer of fine Southdown sand to the refugium.
  • The Bryopsis algae has finally gone away.
  • I think a sudden influx of limewater that leaked from the kalk reactor might have killed some of the peppermint shrimp. The main tank is fine though. Lots of coral growth, but no coralline algae. The reactor is now fixed.
  • The calcium reactor is now half empty, looks like the aragonite is dissolving faster than I thought it would!
  • On 9/27/04 added two new clams (one T. crocea, one teardrop patterned T. maxima.
10/1/04 to
10/14/04
  • Added three Thor amboinensis.
  • My big Pavona colony is looking rather off. Some friends hand noticed a band of bare skeleton a few weeks ago, and I figured maybe it was just stung by a wandering Condylactis anemone, but now more and more patches are bare. My Tubipora colony also has a band of polyps that don't seem to be opening up as usual.
  • I'll be going on vacation for a month, so my dad will be taking care of my tank again.
10/26/04 to
11/4/04
  • Got back from vacation, and the Pavona is looking much worse. The Tubipora has completely died, along with one Tridacna crocea. Two of the Thor shrimp are missing too. Everything else is looking fine though, and the Acroporas have shown quite a bit of growth!
  • I've slowed down the CO2 bubble rate in the calcium reactor, because the tank's pH goes up and down too much.
  • I've started feeding the tank with Liquid Life's coral plankton mix.
  • Added one small Pomacentrus alleni.
11/13/04 to
12/4/04
  • My large Pavona colony finally succumbed to a slow death, but now I have room for more stuff.
  • Got some frags at the MASLAC frag swap: some gold Seriatopora from Jeff, and green Montipora digitata from Chris.
  • I got some new frags at o2manyfish's frag swap: a large red serpent star from evets, a blue tipped staghorn type Acropora and a dark green Montipora with purple edges from boobookitty, some blue mushrooms and a leather coral from ravernat, and some zoanthids from soreviv476 and rehren. I also got a bottle of mixed phytoplankton and rotifers from Reed Mariculture, and after dosing the tank daily I'm noticing that corals are opening up more.
  • I replaced the calcium reactor's canister, because the medium was almost all used up.
  • Traded some Chaetomorpha and Xenia trimmings at the Reef Aquarium and got a small red and white Dendronepthya. I figured that since I'm dosing phytoplankton anyway, I might as well give one a try.
12/24/04 to
1/2/05
  • The bubble anemone decided to move a bit, and ended up stinging and killing an Acropora and Seriatopora frag. I had to rearrange some rocks to give the anemone more space.
  • The Mag Drive pump on the calcium reactor stalled, and it turns out that the sockets that the impeller sits in are worn. I had to wrap the impeller's rubber tips with teflon tape to keep the impeller from wobbling and sticking to the motor housing. It's working for now, but I'll probably have to get a new pump eventually.
  • The sally lightfoot seems to have grown big enough to kill her tankmates. I think I lost the male banded coral shrimp, and I just caught the crab killing one of my wathman gobies. It sucks that two mated pairs have been reduced to singles in one weekend!
1/3/05 to
2/14/05
  • I finally managed to catch the sally lightfoot after two days. It never fell for any of the traps I set, but I managed to pin it against the glass one morning and scoop it out by hand. It now lives in the refugium.
  • The dendronepthya started going downhill when I slightly changed the position of the Gemini pump. It's probably just a coincidence; I guess it was just a matter of time before it started fading away.
  • The bubble tip anemone started getting too big and stinging the surrounding corals. I finally had to remove it after several acropora colonies were killed, and donated the anemone to Cal State Northridge's wet lab. I replaced it with two smaller bubble tips.
  • I finally had the water tested, and everything was fine except for phosphates. Added a bag of Phosban to the sump.
  • Changed the Iwasaki to a 10 KK XM on 2/14/05.


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 Copyright © 2003 by Kenneth K. Uy . All rights reserved.