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Discussion in 'Tank Builds' started by ChristopherKriens, Sep 3, 2013.
The rock has arrived! Just need to find a few days where it isn't raining...
In the mean time, some photos of the new guys:
The Copperband continues to do really well, and has started to pick at the small Aiptasia. I think he will benefit a lot from the new rock work as there just aren't a lot of places to hide.
Also added a small group of P. smithvanizi from ZoaCollector. Another pretty tough species to ween off of live foods, but fairly hardy and social eventually.
The old Royal Gramma
The Bartlett's are looking really good these days. I have two males that each have their own side of the tank where they try to convince the one remaining female of how great they are.
The leopard wrasse continues the transition (or has finished?) and has developed a yellow-green splotch at the base of the gill.
So what has happened to the main reef? Did you relocate everything to your Savvy downstairs while you reaquascape the display? You've been fairly cryptic on what you've been up to.
As I remove rock, I have just been placing things on the sand bed or unused areas of the rock. Eventually I will run out of room and may have to move some things to the frag tank temporarily. I have a lot of leather and soft corals that I may just leave in the tank throughout the whole process.
I'm also considering a more smooth transition, where I replace the left island with a new one while I leave the entire right side in place for a short time. I can't imagine being able to do this though without creating some bacterial imbalance, so I think I will still remove the more sensitive stuff just in case. I hope that the presence of the bio pellets will provide a stable source of denitrification while I mess with things.
Nice weekend to get started!
The last of the rock has been moved out from the display down into the frag tank. A few fish hid in the rock and took the trip, so I've been catching and moving them back in. The new rock has been placed in and I'm seeing some diatoms and turf algae, so I added a small army of turbo snails to keep it under control. I did bleach and acid wash the rock, so I don't anticipate nutrient issues for too long.
Overall, everything is looking good. I did lose a female Lyretail Anthias that jumped out of the frag tank before I could catch her. The display looks a little dull with bare rock and sand, but the fish sure look colorful. My anemone split during the transition too, and both halves seem to be doing well along with the corals that I left in the display (nepthea, xenia).
I also snagged a Blue Spotted Jawfish who has set up camp at rock #3. He seems to have some fin rot on the tail, but doesn't seem to be affected over the past few weeks, and will hopefully recover.
I have always had a bad habit of leaving screen tops off, so with the Jawfish addition I added a nicer looking top that's less visually intrusive.
Low profile from the side, and semi-transparent
Visual update on the Bartlett's.
Dwarf Falco Hawkfish. I haven't kept a percher since the Red Sea Mimic Blenny years ago. I like their little hunchback.
You'd be mad too if you had Aiptasia on your face.
I moved the tang up from the frag tank while I was slinging rock around. Much easier to get photos.
Stretching under the actinics after a long day.
What did that pile of rocks end up looking like?
Man I've been a way for a while what happened to the main tank?
I decided to remove everything and reaquascape. It's been a slow process, but I'm getting there.
This is the state of things currently.
I went with a three island pillar layout, picking out the pieces of rock that were going to work the best, and dropped the rest off at BRS for a partial refund. Not a bad way to go about it for us locals. Each rock structure can be rotated 360º and moves independently, so I've been messing around with spacing and angle a little bit. I think I will drop the height on the left rock as it looks a little too "floaty".
Fish, softies, nems, and now LPS seem to be doing alright. I brought up a few pieces of Montipora prematurely which have browned out somewhat. I'm still measuring about 20-25ppm nitrate and 0.12ppm phosphate, so I think I need to increase my pellet count or change some maintenance habits before the stony corals are going to look good.
Looks nice Chris! Can't go wrong with floaty it will be great for sandbed maintenance.
Also I'm curious what you used for bases I may have to copy it at some point . Is that acrylic rod and acrylic sheet?
The old left rock structure definitely had some nasty build up in the sand. The more open the sand bed is, the more I can hopefully keep things clean long term.
For the bases I used 12" x 12" x ½" acrylic base and 1.5" acrylic rod. It turned out to be structural overkill once buoyancy was involved, but it did serve as a nice solid base when I was shaping with the chisel.
I have also used tile (say 12" x 12") and then used that Marco cement to adhere rock to tile base. That stuff really holds.
Just a snail enjoying the view.
BTW Chris your Husky is gorgeous all grown up! I remember seeing (her?) as a puppy I'm a little jealous.
Not much new to report. I had to move the Copperband to the frag tank as I'm starting to see him get too thin. He eats with the rest of the fish, but does so slowly and ignores the small foods that I feed the Anthias and doesn't have anything to graze on like the tangs. In any event, he'll be enjoying an all-you-can-eat PE Mysis environment for a couple of months.
Grabbed a couple macros of a new coral before it gets mounted.