Articles

Featured Articles

  1. Celebrating patience. Elevating the reef hobby.

    It’s kind of funny to me how the same sorts of topics and issues keep popping up in the hobby world. Now two years removed from the business end of the reef world, I can see with a bit more clarity some of the happenings and trends in the hobby. And, talking to aquarists of all types daily, I am seeing what I find s somewhat obvious “cultural issue” we have in the hobby. And I’ll come right out and state my “thesis” here: I think that we- as a hobby, are not doing a good enough job...
  2. Following the Masters Part Two

    When I decided to write the first article looking at the tank parameters for people who I consider masters in the hobby I did so thinking that their tanks would be pretty similar and that their success was at least partially due to their following some common recipe. I chose them somewhat randomly with the only criteria being that their tanks were successful and had been so over time, that they were willing to share what they were doing and that I thought most hobbyists would admire their...
  3. 'Pairing' Wrasses: That's Not How Any of this Works!

    First, we really need some understanding of how wrasses interact and live in their natural environment. In the ocean, most genera of wrasses live in harems, which consists of a group of females to one dominant male. Often, there are a few transitional males in this group as well, which are essentially males-in-waiting – waiting for their chance to overtake the current or become the new dominant male. Within this harem, there is an established hierarchy. The hierarchy exists by the...
  4. Fish and Treatment Guidelines (with chart)

    The following chart is a quick reference guide on what QT protocol should be used according to which type of fish you are running through QT. It will give you an idea of which methods are generally safest with certain species but is not meant to be absolute in most cases. All fish are individuals and can and will react differently than the norm to certain medications or situations. Just because most tangs do well in copper doesn’t mean that every tang will do well. The chart is numbered in...
  5. Old Tank Syndrome

    Is this a myth? Something we heard about in the deep abbesses of when the hobby started (I think it was on a Tuesday) Is this something we need to worry about. Like we don't have enough to worry about with the heartbreak of psoriasis and wondering if we will be accepted into the "Hair club for men".
  6. All About Reef Safe Wrasses in Aquaria

    Below, you will find sections about: these guidelines, wrasses which qualify as reef safe, the general requirements, feeding, shipping, quarantine, adding new wrasses to your system, mixing species and genera, the acclimation box, protogynous hermaphroditism & sexual dichromatism, “pairing” wrasses & harems, pricing and rarity, a section about each genus (Anampses, Cirrhilabrus, Halichoeres, Labroides, Macropharyngodon, Paracheilinus, Pseudocheilinus, Pseudocheilinops, Pseudojuloides, and...
  7. Fish Disease Index - Pictorial Guide

    Use this guide to find a picture that most closely matches your fish's symptoms. Click the link, if available for more detailed information on the disease and how to treat it.
  8. Cirrhilabrus Complexes: Inferiority Need Not Apply

    This article is obsolete. It has been replaced by the 1st revision. Cirrhilabrus, the “Fairy Wrasses”, are one of the most elegant, active, and colorful reef fish. Their appeal in a reef tank is common to many, but not all have a well-rounded understanding of the compatibility amongst them. Enter the notion of “complexes”: groupings of very closely related species within a genus. Complexes create groups in which the species have a physically similar structure; the body shape, fin...
  9. Hanna Checker Kit Giveaway

    Hanna Checkers are small, handheld colorimeters that provide higher accuracy results than typical chemical test kits. Offering improved technology, these portable colorimeters make measurement hassle-free with their simple design and easy to follow instructions.
  10. LRS "Behind-The-Scenes" Giveaway

    LRS Foods just celebrated their five year anniversary by releasing a “behind-the-scenes” video produced by Mark Callahan. They’ve come a long way in a short period of time and this video shows the care and diligence which has been the foundation of their success. LRS has offered up a nice package of frozen, dry and liquid foods as a way to say “thank you” for supporting their family business. You may not know it but LRS now distributes PE Mysis, Reef Nutrition, Coral Frenzy and Masstick...
  11. Why do the tang police exist?

    This captive stress often translates to a hurdle that must be overcome by the aquarist. It’s not uncommon for some tang species to be reluctant to feed and it’s not uncommon for small juvenile tangs to be harassed, if placed in a tank with larger fish. Because of this, a long quarantine period is required, which allows the fish to spend weeks alone in a tank where it cannot be harassed and special feeding techniques can be employed.
  12. Your Guide to Aquarium Photography #1 - Getting the Basics

    Tank photography has been and continues to be a challenging topic for many reefers. When I started my tank, I was using an SLR (a non-digital for the newer generation); yes, we used to shoot using film and wait for days to finish the roll and get it developed. I remember taking notes on how each shot was taken (no Exif info was available then) and then keeping the notes to compare with the pictures when the film was processed. I was able to raise my ratio of good shots from 2/36 to 25-30/36...
  13. Diving back into the reef

    A "new" reef keeper takes a light-hearted look at the many changes she's noticed since she last kept a reef tank (13 years ago).
  14. Video - How to do a Freshwater Dip

    Freshwater dips are a very important diagnostic tool when you have a sick fish. Since it can help flush out the excess mucus that can and does build up in the gills with a parasite infestation, it can be lifesaving as well. It will even confirm a flukes infestation. It’s important to know how to perform a freshwater dip since so much can be gained from it. We are going to go through the steps here together.
  15. $1000 Giveaway Challenge From World Wide Corals and R2R!

    We're excited to announce that World Wide Corals is sponsoring a fun contest where 2 winners will get a $500 coral box shipped to their door! WWC is one of the premier places for coral and fish and have one of the best saltwater reef stores in the world! WWC is top notch in stock and customer service!
  16. Albert J. Thiel - Fundraiser

    As many of you have probably heard, Albert Thiel lost his battle with cancer on Sunday, April 23, 2017. His family needs our help as they have been financially devastated due to his exorbitant medical expenses. Randi Horlick started a gofundme campaign about 4 months ago to help them. Sadly, the campaign has only raised a meager $2855.00 of it's $20,000.00 goal.
  17. APEX GIVEAWAY: Got socks for Christmas so now I guess have to win it!

    Poor reefer that had your hopes crushed on Christmas morning when you opened up your gifts from Santa only to find out that you got socks instead of the super cool, most awesome Neptune Apex Aquarium Controller! Neptune felt sorry for you so they are giving you a chance for redemption!
  18. The Supreme Guide To Setting Up A Saltwater Reef Aquarium

    The marine environment is one of the most complex systems on the planet. The aquarium you are about to set up is only a tiny sliver of the vast ocean, but it is no where near simple. This task is going to take patience, a ton of reading, and a ton of patience...
  19. When disaster strikes, be ready ...

    I recommend having a back-up power solution that is reliable, maintained and easy to use. For this, I’ve yet to find anything that beats Generac’s generator line and transfer switch. With this system, your generator can be kept outside the house, either covered (Generac makes an exterior generator cover) or housed in a specially built enclosure. With the transfer switch an outlet is installed on the home’s exterior where the generator’s power line can be connected. In the event of a power...
  20. EcoTech Marine Radion Giveaway

    The newest generation of Radions radically redefine the simplicity, beauty and power of the LED light. The best aquarium LED light in the world just got better. Simply put, the G4 Radion is the best thing since the G3 Radion.
  21. Tang Aggression - Understanding and Combating

    So what's the deal with tangs? How do I keep them together? Why are they so aggressive and difficult to keep sometimes? It's a common discussion point. Some may dissent with what I have to share but I've never had less than three tanks running at a time, up to 7, and have been in the hobby 12 years with 2 of them spent working for an LFS running their saltwater fish dept largely, for what it's worth. Root of Tang Aggression: Understand that from a tangs point of view, more herbivores...
  22. Bayer VS The Dreaded Acropora Eating Flatworm

    For those who are unaware, there is an alternative dipping method out there using Bayer Advanced Complete Insect Killer for Turf and Soil Concentrate. It has been heralded as a more gentle alternative to things like Revive and Coral RX, yet just as effective. I myself have used this in combination with Coral RX at times (not in the same container but one after the other). But to date I have not had any coral come in with AEFW so I have been unable to truly test it myself. There are...
  23. R2R Banners and Their Meanings: What are all these labels under everyone's usernames?

    As a member of the Reef2Reef community, perhaps you've noticed that some members seem to have labels (sometimes a whole stack of 'em) under their username. Maybe this is something you're just now noticing, or perhaps it's a question you've been muddling over for a while but just never got around to asking... What the heck are these labels and what do they mean? Well, keep reading because today I'm going to work on unpacking all of the different user "banners" you'll see around R2R.
  24. Giveaway: BRS Black Friday/Cyber Monday $200 Gift Certificate

    BRS Black Friday/Cyber Monday $200 Gift Certificate Sponsored by BulkReefSupply.com It's easy and free to enter. So what are you waiting for?
  25. Let’s Mix it Up! Designing and Using a Water Mixing Station

    Water changes can be done using something as simple as a 5 gallon bucket. If that is how you currently do it, and you’re okay with that, you can stop reading and move on. But if you’re looking for something a little more formal, and might I add potentially easier, you may want to continue reading...
  26. How To Plan a Livestock List

    The very best way to select the fish you will keep in your tank is to start well before you even purchase a tank. Wait. What? I don’t even have a tank yet and you want me to start selecting fish?! Quite simply, yes I do. In this hobby, a very good portion of the fish we keep require special needs for their care. The biggest of which is ROOM. Room to swim, to exercise, to call territory. Tangs are among the most popular fish to keep in the saltwater world and they need lots of room to swim....
  27. Vacation Time!!!

    As we approach the vacation season once again, your Reef Squad thought it might be a good idea to address some of the questions that keep some reefers up at night prior to the trip. Worse yet, they can keep you from truly enjoying your well-deserved getaway. Let’s go over some basic things we can do to prevent that from happening.
  28. Incrementalism in the Hobby

    There is an old Southern axiom of how to cook a bullfrog. You can’t just pop it into boiling water because as soon as it hits the hot water it will sense that the water is too hot so it will hop out. Instead you put it in cool refreshing water and then gradually increase the heat. By doing it that way before it realizes that the water is getting hot it is too late and it is cooked. As far as I know cooking bullfrogs is not a major aspect of reefkeeping, but that example is a good way of...
  29. What is Alkalinity?

    Most reefkeepers know they need to measure alkalinity, and most know it has something to do with carbonate. But what is alkalinity exactly? Why is it important? How is it measured? This article will answer those questions and give you all of the information that you need to fully understand one of the most important chemical parameters in our reef aquaria. Along with calcium, many corals also use “alkalinity” to form their skeletons, which are composed primarily of calcium carbonate. It is...
  30. Choosing Cleanup Crew Critters.

    Cleanup Crew. Tank Janitors. Tank Cleaners. Functionally, it means the same thing to every hobbyist…. inverts added to your tank to keep it nice and sparkly. It’s a necessity (Well, not an absolute necessity) Everyone has one. But, if you ask those people what critters to include, and how many…. you’ll get many MANY different answers. So, Great!~ Renee is going to tell you exactly how to stock your tank. Naw! You knew it wasn’t going to be that easy. I hope to give you some things to...
  31. Cirrhilabrus Complexes: Inferiority Need Not Apply (1st Revision)

    Cirrhilabrus, the “Fairy Wrasses”, are one of the most elegant, active, and colorful reef fish. Their appeal in a reef tank is common to many, but not all have a well-rounded understanding of the compatibility amongst them. Enter the notion of “complexes”: groupings of very closely related species within a genus.
  32. New film to expose aquarium fisheries' dark side

    Snorkel Bob has ridden the anti-aquarium wave for quite some time, blaming the aquarium industry for much of what ails Hawaiian reefs, whether or not the evidence supported those conclusions. He has backed and aided in writing numerous bills to shut-down or severely limit Hawaii’s live fish collection protocol. As of yet, none have been overly successful and many of Witner’s theories have been debunked by marine biologists and researchers. I’m not surprised he’s decided to switch formats and...
  33. Using Lightroom to Develop Aquarium Images

    What I'm about to show you is pretty basic and should be similar across all software packages. We are basically just importing the image and then making adjustments to basic things like contrast, saturation, sharpening, etc. Instead of writing it all out and trying to illustrate the process with photos, I figured it would be easier to understand if watching a video. So sit back and enjoy this little off-the-cuff tutorial that shows my typical steps for processing images of my tank. Hopefully...
  34. Making testing easy with a magnetic stirrer

    As we all know testing our system can be time consuming and challenging. Did I time the test, right? Did I count the drops, right? Did I shake the vile long enough? After some thought, I started looking around for a way to simplify the shaking, dropping, and adding the reagent and I came up with using a lab magnetic stirrer. I use Red Sea test kits and also, I have also tried test on Salifert test kits using their vials and it works too.
  35. Beginner Corals: Pulsing Xenia

    Xenia is a great starter coral, but should be added to your tank with caution. It’s ability to spread quickly can be a draw or allow it to smother out other, slower growing corals. If placed carefully, it’s possible to have xenia in your display without worrying that it will take over the whole tank.
  36. Invert Spotlight: Conch

    The conch is an excellent addition to your clean up crew. They are touted for their skills at cleaning and sifting through your sand bed keeping it healthy and white.
  37. A Simple Fix for Low PH

    When living in the warm weather or cold weather climates, we really do not have the chance to open our windows that often. This leads to a build up of CO2 in the air inside the house and results in a drop in pH. When our pH drops down to levels that are alarming in our reef tanks, we start asking ourselves why and how can we fix this in order to keep our reef healthy. Here is a quick and simple way to raise the system's PH within a closed-up house...
  38. CLAIMED - Boom Corals Kessil AP700 Giveaway

    We're excited to announce that BoomCorals.com has generously donated a Kessil AP700 for one lucky member of our community to win! We appreciate them sponsoring this contest and best of luck to everyone who enters!
  39. Thermal Reckoning, a Fire in the making...

    I think we've all seen an alarming number of threads talking about electrical fires. Some the power-cords have caught on fire, others a power-strip was at the heart of the issue, and others the wall outlet shorted and flared up. While some of these seemingly had no major or catastrophic issues, outside of a burned cord or power-strip, others have actually ignited part of the stand. The worse cases have actually caught their home on fire. Instructions that ship with most electrical components...
  40. LED Diode Replacement – Instructional Article

    Over the last few years, we have seen more beginner and moderate reefers becoming more and more inclined to attempt DIY projects. Anything from building a custom roller mat or an algae turf scrubber to attempting a stand build using two-by wood. With LED’s becoming more popular, the need for changing diodes for spectrum preference changes as well as burnt out diodes is becoming more of a norm.
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