Articles

  1. What about the Merulina Coral?

    Are you into rare corals but also like preserving life in the ocean? The Merulina coral, also known as Lettuce, Cabbage, Ridge, or Ruffled Coral, may just be your ticket to preservation! Some species of Merulina coral fall within the Marine Protected Areas. Growing these corals in captivity to study is the only way we can help them stay on our planet and not get lost in the reef. If you have a knack for SPS and want to do your part for science you will love this coral. image via reef2reef...
  2. Red Fish, Blue Fish, Dr. Seuss Fish! (Belonoperca pylei)

    One of the least likely fish to appear in your LFS is the Dr. Seuss fish. In fact, you will not find but an extremely limited amount of information about this particular species on the internet. Scuba divers are not even lucky enough to encounter these rare creatures without exceeding dangerous depths that require special equipment. The Dr. Seuss Fish actually lives with an amazing assortment of rare fish, some not yet identified! A colorful assortment of chromis, groupers, and even the...
  3. Feed like a geek...Your reef will LOVE you for it!

    This Article is Sponsored by @uniquecorals As you know, when I'm not stoking fellow reefers with cool corals, I get to travel around the country and talk about geeky reef topics. One of my most in-demand topics is "Nutrient Control and Export", which, in other words, is a nice way of saying "Getting the nasty stuff out of your aquarium." I'm compelled to touch on this today (nutrient CONTROL) because of a (very) long phone call with a reefer yesterday about the crazy algae bloom his 225...
  4. LFS: “Local Fish Shop” Or “Lying For Sales?!” Is Your Store Legit?

    What is the most common reason for giving up the salt water hobby? When you search through the endless listings of reef tanks for sale on Craigslist, the majority of tanks are not exactly top of the line. Someone will label “Full Blown Reef” on a tank that is nothing more than a fraction of what the educated reefer would even consider putting animals in. The lighting is outdated, they are usually not drilled, the ones with sumps have old overflow boxes filled with algae, and the fish have...
  5. How to love your Lobo: Tips for success with Lobophyllia

    Have you ever kept a Lobophyllia? These are great "LPS" corals with terrific color patterns and shapes that look great in reefs! If you're like a lot of reefers, you may have kept one before, and either had moderate success, or perhaps had a bad experience. Was thinking about this the other day, because we work with a lot of Lobos, and seem to enjoy much success with them, as do most of our customers who purchase them. it made me think about what the keys to success are with Lobos. I decided...
  6. Random musings on coral frags...The beginning of an open dialogue!

    This Article is Sponsored by @uniquecorals As you might have noticed, we offer and sell a lot of coral frags here at Unique Corals. When you work a lot with frags, even the most dense reefer (hey, that might be me!) can pick up some priceless gems of information that can add to the body of knowledge on the subject. I don't need to remind you of the many benefits of coral frags, but since this is my forum, I will anyways!:mod: Bottom line is this- among the many reasons why frags are so...
  7. Refractometers Or Hydrometers: Why The Latter Should Contain A Warning

    By: Justin Leoni of Reef Savers Aquatic Services Introduction Having been around saltwater aquariums for most of my now almost forty years, I’ve seen many gizmos and gadgets. I’ve seen a hobby that one was only for the most advanced aquarist become affordable and available to the masses because of the continued success of both professional marine biologist and the joint effort that the hobby community has put forth to educate. In this article I want to open your eyes if you currently use a...
  8. The Cuttlefish: Strangest Cephalapod In The Sea

    This is one of the strangest cephalapods in the sea. They resemble a squid or an octopus but also resemble a fish from another dimension. Another interesting fact about these invertebrates is that they are not native to the United States. The cuttlefish has been purely an import species until recent advances in breeding. Still, the cuttlefish’s majority is imported until a large enough cephalapod farm is built. Most of the specimens you will see have traveled across the globe and may have a...
  9. SUMPS - The Rundown

    By definition a sump is a pit or hollow in which liquid collects, in particular. (Wiki). If you are new to the aquarium hobby, you may have heard the word sump before. In the aquarium hobby, and even in professional setups like those in zoos and public aquariums the use of a sump is by far the most efficient means of moving water in your tank...
  10. MOVING WITHOUT LOSING: Relocating Your Aquarium

    We are a very mobile race of beings. We have access to every square inch of the planet and even the moon. Staying in one place for your whole life just is not an option to some. Jobs call for relocation. Families grow and need space to grow. Sometimes we cut in line at the zoo, only to be put on witness protection after we find out it was a mob bosses nephew. Either way, we have to go. So how do you take your reef with you?
  11. MOTION OF THE OCEAN: The Motion Of Your Aquarium

    We all want waves! They look great on the beach, and they look awesome in our tanks. Some of the waves people produce in aquariums are outstandingly realistic and benefit their corals ten times more than the linear flow that most affordable companies allow us to achieve. So how do we get more motion in our ocean?
  12. Goniopora Or Goner-oh-poo? The Flower Pot Coral

    This is one amazingly hard to keep coral. If you are one of the few who have made it longer than a year than you are truly a supreme reefer. These are known as one of the hardest corals to keep alive…period. Generally these corals die within the first 6-12 months of captivity, but are still available across the nation to even the most beginner of hobbyist.
  13. Aragocrete: DIY Live Rock

    Live rock is often harvested from the ocean, which leaves a void in the once full reef. A few pounds is not going to effect the ecosystem, but when a few thousand people set up a few thousand gallons worth of water it starts to add up. That can easily be a few hundred thousand pounds of rock in no time at all! Unlike animals, there is no chance in the world that a rock will have babies. There is no way for the rock to quickly replenish itself in the reefs since they are mostly composed of...
  14. Reverse Osmosis And Deionization RO/DI

    Reverse Osmosis and Deionization is a standard in water purification for use in reef keeping. It allows for 100% H, 2, and O. There are tap water conditioners out there, but adding chemicals may not be for you. When you use RO/DI water you minimize the risk of nuisance algae or diatoms. You may have seen sinks with a skinny faucet off to the side. This is actually an RO faucet most of the time, however the kind we use for reef tanks and the ones designed for drinking have one major...
  15. AQUARIUM CONTROLLERS

    The art of stability is an amazing ability developed as you become smarter and learn the signs of change. As we get more in tune with our tanks, technology is being developed every day to allow us to take a more hands off approach. Normally when we have to make a change in the tank we would have to get out the old maintenance tools like measuring spoons and what not. This is a thing of the past now. Complete control over each aspect of our aquariums can be had nearly anywhere in the world...
  16. FILTRATION METHODS

    When a fish, snail, crab, copepod, shrimp, or coral eats what happens? They poop! When poop is submersed in water it dissolves and becomes detritus, or waste powder. Detritus causes ugly rocks, sand, and feeds bacteria and algae. We do not want this. We want crystal clear water, bright purple rocks, and sand that is so white it blinds the neighbors across the road. So let's talk about filtration...
  17. NPS Not NPR! The Beauty Of Non-Photosynthetic Corals

    Believe it or not, there is a group of corals that does not use Photosynthesis as its main means of energy production, but these corals care requirements should not be left in the dark. Some of these corals can require more food than your cat! Some hobbyists have designed systems with oversized filtration and automated feeders that constantly blast their corals with food. Automated water changes of large quantities are also a common design, for these corals demand pristine water and the...
  18. Got Zoas: GENERAL ZOANTHID CARE

    Zoanthids are one of the most diverse species of coral we see. They come in an infinite array of colors and color morphs. They are mostly compatible with each other, allowing multiple colors in one colony, sometimes even creating new colors. The zoanthid family is very broad and is found in every reef in the sea, so growth rates, lighting, and flow will be a game of trial and error. Luckily, most of the assorted Zoas we find are grown and propagated under similar lighting than what we use so...
  19. The Emperor’s Shrimp (Periclimenes Imperator)

    One of the coolest thing about this hobby is its diversity in tank inhabitants. This is sadly its biggest problem as well. Due the the immense diversity, we have so many animals to choose from that we cannot know every fact about them all, which leads to purchasing something that may either kill everything or be killed. A great example of this is the Emperor’s Shrimp. These are very particular animals and have very specific living requirement.
  20. Aquarium Lighting

    One of the hardest concepts to grasp is Lighting. It is also one of the most controversial topics brought up when talking to owners of pet stores and even veteran reefers. Try telling someone with 10 year old corals raised by fluorescent lighting that they need to upgrade to LED and they will say otherwise. This is not wrong if they are successful with their corals but why not upgrade when there are so many benefits? Sometimes it is just because they have not learned much about them. Types...
  21. Ultimate Filtration (Algae Turf Scrubbers)

    Have you been having algae problems in your display tank? Do you feed your fish as much as you would eat? Are you sick and tired of struggling to keep your sand clean? Do you want me to stop asking you questions because the answer is “Yes?” The problems you are experiencing are centered around the import/export of nutrients, and at least one great solution to exporting nutrients lies within the mangled screen of what has been called the Algae Turf Scrubber...
  22. What Is A Protein Skimmer And How Does It Work?

    When you go to the beach and “sea” foam, pun intended, you will also smell a very familiar odor. The ocean is a gigantic system of natural filtration and chemical dosing. Today we will focus on the filtration factor. Protein Skimming! First off, what on Earth is protein skimming and why do we need to utilize these devices? A protein skimmer uses nothing but air bubbles and water to extract Dissolved Organic Compounds, or DOCs, not to be confused with Department of Corrections. The protein...
  23. Reef Spotlight - April 2013 - "PmRg"

    REEF SPOTLIGHT - April 2013 The Reef Aquarium of: Pedro Gomes A.K.A. "PmRg" You can also check out Pedro’s tank build here on R2R: [URL]https://www.reef2reef.com/forums/member-tanks/95851-island-reef.html[/URL] Introduction I would like to start by thanking Reef2Reef for picking my tank for this spotlight. I’m very glad that Reef2Reef is the first forum featuring my “Island Reef” in the United States. My name is Pedro and I’m a 25 year old international student, currently studying at Kingston...
  24. Tips and Tricks on Creating Amazing Aquascapes

    Being a artist for fun and profession, I see things different than most people. I decided to create a article about composition, balance, color, and depth within your reef aquarium. I really hope this can help some of you out to create your dream looking reef that is pictured in your head. Once you have your tank in front of you with your rock, most people tend to blank out and just throw the aquascape together with little to no thought. When you search through the internet looking at the...
  25. Oulophyllia Coral - Moon, Moonstone Coral

    Oulophyllia, although available in the hobby trade, is quite often mislabeled due to its resemblance to other types of Brain corals and may therefore not be offered for sale under its proper name. Due to its overall difference in shape though identification should not be all that difficult, but because it is not a widely available one many wholesalers and stores may not research its correct ID and just sell it as a Brain Coral without giving a scientific name to the coral. It is a large...
  26. Acanthophyllia Coral for the Nano Reef

    Acanthophyllia deshayesiana © Albert J. Thiel This is perhaps not the most commonly available coral, and it is often confused with Scolymia vitiensis, as they look quite similar, and sometimes even with Cynarina lacrimalis, but it certainly is a very nice addition for your Nano-Reef if you can find a nice specimen such as, for instance, the one below: Acanthophyllia deshayesiana © aquaportail Note that although confusion with other similar looking corals is possible and exists, even...
  27. Child Proofing Your Aquarium

    As aquarists we all take great pride in the tanks that are in our care. Many of us also have small children who share in the enjoyment that a reef tank can bring. The aquarium can have a soothing effect on children and can spark their interest into things that may not be something they would have a chance to interact with where they live. With this in mind there are also some things with the aquarium that can be dangerous to small children like electricity, plumbing and chemicals. Even with...
  28. How To Train Your Frogfish (Anglerfish) To Eat Frozen Food

    How To Train Your Frogfish (Anglerfish) To Eat Frozen Food Frogfish are really unique and interesting specimens for the species-specific aquarium. They have a variety of morphological features that never ceases to fascinate us. But they have a downside, much like all ambush predators--they rarely take frozen food without some motivation and work on the side of the aquarist. First off, start him off on a steady supply of live food. You're going to want to get him fattened up, as the...
  29. Lighting spectra, Photosynthesis, and You

    Hello all. Some of you may recognize me from Nano-reef and my posts about LEDs, DIY recommendations, etc. Figured I'd post this up over here, as well. Putting it in general hardware and lighting because it applies to more than just LEDs. :) With full-spectrum LED arrays becoming all the rage nowadays for better coloration, more and more people are considering them, but I see people saying all the time "dude, but corals only use blue light for all their energy and red only helps algae grow,...
  30. Reacting to Loss of Power: By cdness

    Reacting to Loss of Power In this day and age we rely on electrical power for many things. In this hobby all of the equipment used to sustain life depends on electricity including lights, pumps, powerheads, and controllers. If the power goes out the life support systems are terminated and the countdown timer to disaster begins. This article will describe the different ways an aquarist can protect the living creatures in their care in the event of power loss. DISCLAIMER: Please note,...
  31. Fish Inhabitants with Large Seahorses

    Fish that go well with large seahorses A lot people want to keep other fish in their seahorse tanks to complement their seahorses. The fish also help with consuming excess food that the seahorses do not eat as well as adding another dimension to the tank. It is important to take certain precautions when choosing what types of fish to add with the seahorses. Seahorses are slow eaters and swimmers. They do not fare well in tanks with aggressive fish. 1. Pose little to no threat to...
  32. The Symbiotic Relationship between Clownfish and Anemones

    Many people begin the journey into keeping a saltwater tank because they want to have a “Nemo” with its anemone. Before getting the anemone, I think it is important to understand the relationship between the clownfish and its anemone.
  33. A Reef2Reef Spotlight: Regal Angelfish

    Species Profile By Mike & Terry Lauderdale A Reef2Reef Spotlight: The Regal Angelfish Pygoplites diacanthus Angelfishes are arguably one of the most vivid, visually appealing animals available for stocking in the marine aquarium. While their brilliant coloration and striking patterns make them highly desirable, their delicate nature, appetites, and predation behaviors create a quandary for the reef keeper. Probably no angelfish typifies this more than the regal angelfish (Pygoplites...
  34. Reef Spotlight - March 2012 - "Mike & Terry"

    By the early 2000's, our son was graduating and we found ourselves empty-nesters looking for a new house and new reef tank! We upgraded to a 180g system with a separate sump room and created a thriving SPS-dominated reef tank. This system really gave us the "big-tank experience". We learned much about the really interesting DIY aspects of the hobby: plumbing, electrical, mechanical, electronics, etc. Our husbandry continued to evolve as well, learning much about water quality, chemistry,...
  35. Reef Spotlight - January 2012 - "swannyson7"

    EDITOR'S NOTE: The pics in this article were updated based on the member's build thread due to original photos posted in article being lost from server. REEF SPOTLIGHT - January 2012 The Reef Aquarium of: Scott Swanson aka "swannyson7" You can also check out my tank build here on R2R: [URL]http://www.reef2reef.com/forums/large-aquariums-180g/43713-swannyson7s-180g-mixed-reef.html[/URL] Introduction I’d like to thank the entire R2R community for the opportunity to have my tank featured as this month’s...
  36. Reef Spotlight -December 2011 - "Sweetride"

    EDITOR'S NOTE: The pics in this article were updated based on the member's build thread due to original photos posted in article being lost from server. REEF SPOTLIGHT - December 2011 The Reef Aquarium of: Ian Geronimo aka "Sweetride" You can also check out Ian's tank build here on R2R: [URL]http://www.reef2reef.com/forums/member-tanks/68622-my-110-gallon-peninsula-reef-tank.html[/URL] Introduction Let me start by saying it is an honor to have been selected for this month's Reef Spotlight. I am...
  37. Reef Spotlight - November 2011 - "Acrotrdco"

    I'm Howard, a 36 year old Canadian guy living in Hong Kong, married with no children yet and I work in the I.T. field. I live on the 21st floor of a residential skyscraper, where like most residential apartments in Hong Kong, space is precious, so to make good use of every square inch I've got. I've set my tank on the window sill, making it part of my living room. It was an honor to be invited to share information on my tank with fellow reefers on Reef2Reef. One particular point I would...
  38. Lets Talk Substrates for the Marine Aquarium

    Bare-bottom (BB)? Calcium Carbonate (CC) Gravel? Crushed Shell? Sand? Deep vs. Shallow? With all the choices that are out there, no wonder new hobbyists are often confused about which substrate to use for their marine aquarium. In this thread, I shall attempt to address pros and cons of each of the available substrates. Please remember however, that the choice of substrate must be balanced with two things; Aesthetic value to the viewer and biological value to the livestock. Some fish and...
  39. Reef Spotlight - September 2011 - "Luisgo"

    My name is Luis Gonzalez and I live in Puerto Rico, the most amazing island in the Caribbean. First, I have to say that it is an honor that the mods selected my tank for the Reef Spotlight and to share it with fellow reefers atReef2Reef. In some ways it is a surprise because of the current trend to keep SPS corals. I love soft corals and LPS but for some reason I am starting to like SPS as well. My first saltwater tank was setup in 1990 and all of the rocks and corals were collected from...
  40. Reef Spotlight - April -2011 - "2Sunny"

    When I started this tank I gave considerable thought to what exactly I wanted from my aquarium since I was basically starting over, and what I realized was that I love gardening. Where some people grow orchids or bonsais, I love creating an aquarium full of colorful SPS that makes folks say "Wow" and so all other considerations were secondary. Fish, soft corals, or invertebrates were only there as supporting players , and everything about the design of my open top, low set system was...
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