Articles

Featured Articles

  1. Are LEDs a suitable primary light source?

    However, determining if LEDs alone are viable sources of light, requires a better assessment. It’s certainly true that using multiple fixtures creates acceptable PAR readings throughout even a large reef aquarium. However, it’s tough to get totally accurate PAR readings from every nook and cranny within the tank.
  2. How to "Regenerate" Seachem Purigen

    Seachem Purigen is a synthetic polymer resin that removes dissolved organic matter. It also has a water-polishing quality, and it adsorbs a wide variety of chemicals. Many find this a great alternative and/or companion to Granular Activated Carbon. Purigen can be "regenerated" after it has been saturated, which is a pretty simple process - but a few tips never hurt anyone!
  3. 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).
  4. Review: Kessil AP700 light fixture

    The AP700 suffers from the same concerns present with other “puck” style LED fixtures. Kessil uses a proprietary dense matrix puck, which crams lots and lots of diodes into a tight space. The technique creates a very pointed light source and the ensuing cone effect creates a halide like shimmer. Kessil’s color control and management chipset works well, meaning that the individual diodes respond flawlessly to different spectral settings.
  5. New from GHL: Mitras Lightbar 2 + Pre-Order Offer

    The next generation of the GHL Mitras Lightbar has arrived. Our original design proved to be an effective way to provide aquariums with powerful, energy efficient illumination. Better yet, it was and still is one of the brightest LED lights on the market. We applied these traits and added new characteristics to make an even more powerful product. We present you, the GHL Mitras Lightbar 2.
  6. It's 2016, where is the ich vaccine?

    In 2014 a US patent was awarded (Patent #: 8758774 B2) for a vaccination against marine ich and several other common aquatic diseases, most notable vibriosis. The vaccine was created by taking skin swabs from fish infected with the parasite. Cerebral spinal fluid is then removed from the infected fish and added to a fluid containing the parasite (de-activated via formalin).
  7. ZeoVit System discussion.

    Will be starting threads on the various "method's" in advance reef keeping so hobbyist can understand each method better. As with anything in this hobby there is no one way or wrong way to keep a Reef tank. Here is the FAQ from the Zeovit forum so that you can understand the basic's of the system. ZeoVit Basic Information by Shadowramy Some say that ZeoVit is just the latest ‘snake oil’ to hit the reef market, while others praise the colorful results it gets. Still others believe the...
  8. 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...
  9. Review of the New Ecotech Radion G4

    LED lighting has become accepted as a legitimate lighting source in the reef aquarium hobby due to the advance features the Radion series of lights offers. We have come to expect WiFi control of our lights from our smart phones. When Ecotech introduced UV LEDs in the Radion we found out how important it was to have full spectrum in our lighting. With the Radion it became easy for owners to share their lighting schedules with each other online by exporting and importing lighting schedule...
  10. 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...
  11. 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...
  12. The intricate process of feeding

    This is a robust feeding regimen in and of itself, but is by no means complete. Feeding in this manner has to be controlled, meaning that one of the main points is to reduce waste. There shouldn’t be that much lying around and certainly not enough to sustain a diverse reef tank full of cleaner organisms. Most of these animals are primarily active at night, feeding on everything from uneaten food to fish waste, on down to biological sludge.
  13. Death Tank

    Thinking about buying a complete set up from a hobbyist that's already running? Be prepared beforehand to avoid problems when you get your new-to-you prize home.
  14. Fish Shopping 101: Tips to Buying a Healthy Fish

    Buying a new fish for your aquarium can be both an exciting and nerve-racking experience. Is this fish healthy? Is this fish a good fit for my aquarium? If I get this fish, am I sacrificing another fish down the line? These are a few of the many questions that may pop into your head, and are all very important and relevant. When choosing a new addition for your aquarium, you should consider many things. Here are a few things to consider and look for when choosing the next fish for your...
  15. How behaviorally complex are marine fish?

    Today however, advances in ethology (the science of animal behavior), sociobiology (the scientific theory that states behavior is a result of evolution), neurobiology (the application of biological principles to the study of developmental mechanisms) and ecology, scientists have a much clearer picture of both the behavior but also the conscious processes of fish.
  16. Seahorse Tankmates Guide - Part I: Fish

    * this is for "regular-sized" seahorses only and cannot be used in determining tankmates for Dwarf Seahorses. 0 Risk Rating no aggressive tendencies no food competition (*) mostly benthic/cryptic and keep to themselves 1 Risk Rating no aggressive tendencies minimal food competition mostly in water column, but does not have a fast/erratic swimming pattern 2 Risk Rating no aggressive tendencies minimal food competition mostly in water column and has fast or erratic swimming pattern 3...
  17. 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.
  18. Build a DIY auto filter (Rollermat) for $60!

    Automatic mechanical filtration An automatic mechanical filter provides all the benefits of running filter socks, but removes particulates before they can break down in your tank and increase nitrates, and only needs to be changed once a month or less- depending on design. The basic design is a supply role of filter media, and a spool driven by a motor that takes up used filter media. Bulk Reef Supply sells the Rollermat for $400, which is similar in function. I don’t like the design of the...
  19. 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...
  20. Water changes, a thing of the past or necessity of the present?

    Turning your aquarium system into a fully automated, self-maintaining machine is beneficial in many ways. It greatly reduces micro-management and intervention on behalf of the aquarist. However, it’s not without cost and concern. It also encourages a “hand’s off” approach to husbandry.
  21. '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...
  22. Dr. Joshi’s 500 Gallon SPS dominated mixed reef

    If you are a reef hobbyist, chances are that you are familiar with the legendary Dr. Joshi. Featured by almost, if not every, reef-keeping print publication, online blog and forum for his coral keeping ability, a quick Google search will reveal his legacy as well as pictures of his beautiful tank.
  23. Anemone Compatibility Spreadsheet!

    Hello Everyone! After much help from our fellow reefers and the rest of the reefing communities around the world, I was able to compile an Anemone Compatibility Sheet! This Sheet Addresses the Following: Which Anemones can be housed and touch in an aquarium (listed with √) Which Anemones can NOT touch each other (and is not recommended to be housed together either) (listed with X) And here is the most up to date draft Special Thanks To: @ja4207 @Nemguy123 @Psiber_Syn @DeepSeaPhilosopher...
  24. 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...
  25. 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.
  26. HOW TO: LIVE underwater webcam (Fish Cam)

    I've been working on this for a few years now. I gave up for a long time because there just wasn't the right kind of technology out there until recently. In the past I tried to use a USB camera but this required the camera to be attached to a computer and a program to always be running (slowing down my computer). I was also not able to use a mobile device to check the camera using this process. I tried the process again using an IP camera and an online streaming app called Angelcam.com. In...
  27. LC Blog: Leptos and Stylos, Let's Talk About Them!

    Hello reefers, So there's been a new type of coral that we've been collecting here at LC. Now this type of coral isn't as popular as say zoanthids, acroporas, or chalices. But oddly enough they still usually carry a high price tag. These corals have very thin layers of tissues that just encrust over rocks. Not sure if they're considered lps or sps, since they technically are small polyped but are fleshy like lps at times... You probably know what I'm talking about by now. Encrusters!!!...
  28. Favias, Favias, Favias... Underrated Beauties

    This Article is Sponsored by Legendary Corals. Hello reefers, Darwin here with another article. Mostly a story/ discussion as to what comes out of my reefing head. I haven't done a write up in a while and I was inspired to start this one up after seeing a couple of posts on Facebook coral groups. Excuse any grammer errors or thoughts going everywhere as I wrote this while waiting for my car at the dealership. This might strike you guys as odd as to why I'm not talking about zoas, but this...
  29. !!!TOTAL PHOTOGRAPHIC TRANSPARANCY!!!

    Here’s a delightful new acro of mine that I got chance to shoot last night. And rather than just showcase a close up or two, and do one of my near kitschy now write ups, I thought I’d share exactly how the photo was processed in Lightroom. Admittedly, I am no pro, and have only learned as I’ve gone. But with a little basic know how, and minimal knowledge of lightroom, you can produce acceptably accurate coral pics.
  30. Refractometers And Salinity Measurement

    Salinity is one of the most important parameters measured in reef aquaria. It controls not only the salt balance between an organism and its surrounding environment, but also the levels of a host of ions in seawater that aquarists neither measure nor control independently. Consequently, aquarists must monitor salinity to ensure that organisms are not stressed by moving between aquaria of potentially different salinity, and that the salinity of the aquarium itself is controlled within ranges...
  31. Ultimate Fail: What NOT To Do!

    Do you know that feeling? That feeling when you know something bad is happening in your tank and you don’t know what to do about it? That panic deep in your gut that says “ACTION! You must do something about this NOW!” We’ve all had that feeling at least once. The fear of losing $1000 or more of fish and coral because you didn’t act on a problem fast enough is a real one. The problem here is that nothing good in this hobby happens fast. This is a saying we have all heard and it’s true. So...
  32. SPS Spotlight: Stylophora – Nice And Tough

    When I first started keeping SPS (small polyped stony) corals, I had done my research. Well, I thought I had, but as it turns out there is always more to learn and SPS corals are not all that forgiving when it comes to learning. It is for this very reason that most reputable retailers will advise that SPS corals are not for the beginning reef keeper. That’s good advice – corals can be expensive and SPS corals in particular can command some high prices. I don’t know too many reef hobbyists...
  33. EMERGENCY FISH OPERATION: Venting A Swim Bladder

    Editor’s Note: In the saltwater aquarium hobby, there are many challenges ranging from day to day tasks of maintaining a stable ecosystem to the more difficult issues that can arise due to disease or other problems in the reef. However, some of the rarest issues are those which require something like what you will be reading about below. Few of us have had the situation arise in which we have to do anything like operating surgically on a fish, and this task isn’t for the faint of heart. Rich...
  34. TANK TERROR: Bacterial Infections In The Reef Tank

    Editor’s Note: The reef aquarium hobby is not for the faint of heart. Maintaining a complex ecosystem can be a daunting task with many variables in play that all have effect on one another. However, beyond the effort to maintain the ecosystem and address common day-to-day issues, there are catastrophic situations which can place the entire place the life in the reef tank in great peril. Many of these “Tank Terrors” can strike literally overnight leaving a trail of rapid death in their wake....
  35. SPS Spotlight: “Pearlberry” – Beautiful, Mysterious, And Finicky

    The Pearlberry is one of those corals that most people look at and think “It’s soooo beautiful – I’m going to try my hand at keeping SPS!” For sure, this is an inspiring coral – it is one of the most spectacular corals in our system, and we sure do love to stare at it. But as most SPS keepers know, the decision to move to the dark side and start keeping the “colored sticks” is not one to be taken lightly. SPS corals can be very demanding and frustrating; even with high-quality water...
  36. pH And The Reef Aquarium

    For many aquarists, pH is not something that they have much experience with aside from their aquarium. For many, pH is almost a black box measurement: something to be considered, but whose physical meaning makes little sense to them. This article will describe pH in an intuitive way (as opposed to a more rigorous, mathematical way that I have used in previous articles). While plenty of chemical mathematics can be used to determine some of the interrelationships between various water...
  37. The Acclimation Box: Can This Thing Really Work?

    Acclimation boxes are an essential tool for adding new fish to an existing tank, but a tool which is often overlooked or disregarded. I was once a skeptic myself, and I have a feeling many reading this are far from convinced. After all, how could this little clear box do much of anything? Let’s find out!
  38. TANK TERROR: Identifying And Treating Marine Velvet

    The reef aquarium hobby is not for the faint of heart. Maintaining a complex ecosystem can be a daunting task with many variables in play that all have effect on one another. However, beyond the effort to maintain the ecosystem and address common day-to-day issues, there are catastrophic situations which can place the entire place the life in the reef tank in great peril. Many of these “Tank Terrors” can strike literally overnight leaving a trail of rapid death in their wake. In this...
  39. ZOA SPOTLIGHT: How The Speckled Krakatoa Got Its Name

    I don’t know about you, but I’ve always been curious about how some zoas get their names. There’s almost an art to picking one with a good ring to it. Trying to have the name, the pattern, the colors of the zoa collide and become something special. Utter Chaos, Flaming Mohican, Krakatoa. I can’t say for sure on the previous mentioned polyps (actually I can on the Krakatoa, but that’s another story), but I was involved in the naming of one particular polyp, and it goes a little somethin’...
  40. Pipe Dreams: The In’s & Out’s Of Aquarium Plumbing

    You have a lot of options now-a-days when it comes to plumbing an aquarium and that can make the task a bit overwhelming. There are quite a few different solvents, glues, primers, fittings, piping, and sealants all with their own particular purpose. To complicate that a little more each one has its advantages and disadvantages for applications in our aquarium builds. In this article, we will attempt cover some of the different types of plumbing needs you will face, as well as the tips and...
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