Spotlight Profile of a Reef Aquarist (#7): A Pragmatic Approach to Reef Aquarium Uncertainty

With a slow and steady hand, this reefer not only has several successful tanks up and running but he has also been president of his local aquatic...
  1. This week's Profile of a Reef Aquarist (#7) introduces you to @Bob Weigant, a resourceful and pragmatic gentleman, who believes in making the most of what you have and making good use of your resources, whatever they may be. Bob has almost 25 years of reef experience.

    The 200G.
    r2rbobw.jpeg
    Photo is courtesy of @Bob Weigant, ©2019, All Rights Reserved.


    Until very recently Bob had a beautiful 225G that he just took down following an unexpected and unpleasant exchange with his power company.

    Nevertheless, he still has up his 200G Marineland for our viewing pleasure.

    Let's hear what Bob has to say about his journey as a reef aquarist:

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Coral from the 200G.
    r2rbobweig.jpeg
    Photo is courtesy of @Bob Weigant, ©2019, All Rights Reserved.

    Ok here goes, I set up my first reef tank in 2005 when I lived in Las Vegas. It was a 112 Leemar tank.

    Didn’t really know much but I joined a local reef club. Later on I became VP and then President.

    During the course of the next few years my obsession led to seven tanks. Five were reef, and two were fish only.

    Equipment.
    r2rbob3.jpeg
    Photo is courtesy of @Bob Weigant, ©2019, All Rights Reserved.

    My philosophy is very simple--I keep it simple. I only run a protein skimmer, and I look at my tank before I leave for work and right when I get home. I let my corals tell the story of the tank.

    I test 2-3 times a week mainly just for alk. That seems to be what my SPS corals eat up the most. I am very much obsessed with my tanks. I don’t believe in all the gadgets that are in our hobby. So, I guess my philosophy would be to keep it simple.

    For quarantine, I don’t do it with corals, but only fish. Some would say I’m lucky.

    I’ve limited who I deal with for corals (and fish for that matter). So many people have pests in their tanks, and some simply do not know or care if they pass them along.

    In all my years I’ve had very few problems as far as that goes.

    For ups and downs there have been many. In the past I’ve been guilty of not doing my research or just thinking because I asked someone a question, they are giving me the correct answer.

    It’s so important to do as much research as you can and ask multiple people for their opinion. I like to see other people’s tank, so I can see if they are being successful.

    More 200G tank life.
    r2rbobw5.png
    Photo is courtesy of @Bob Weigant, ©2019, All Rights Reserved.

    I’ve lost big-dollar corals and fish through just not knowing. Even today, I still lose corals from time to time. Not all of us can keep the same corals. Some have troubles while others keep them no problem. Never met a person who could tell me why that is.

    As for myself, I will help anybody that I can but always end it with “it worked for me but may not work for you." Plus I invite people to see my tanks so they can see I’m on the right track.

    I do have a tank thread it’s under Bob’s 225. I can’t even remember what’s in it. I have a new one I’m doing, but I haven’t been very good about finishing it or even updating the other one.

    Currently, I'm running a 200G Marineland mostly LPS, chalices, and zoa’s. I also have a 180G fish only and a 20G Q-tank. I have been also running a 225 Leemar reef tank mostly SPS, which I had to take down a few days ago.

    I’ve always wanted this Marineland tank (200G), and when one became available I grabbed it.

    It is a mixed reef with both SPS and LPS corals. It features many wrasses (rose-band fairy, divided leopard, earmuff, rhomboid, radiant, ornate.) A few Tangs (Scopus, Blue Hippo.)

    I run 4 Kessil’s (2 Narrows & 2 Wides.) A Bashsea sump and a Simplicity skimmer.

    200G tank inhabitants.
    r2rbobw4.jpeg
    Photo is courtesy of @Bob Weigant, ©2019, All Rights Reserved.

    I’m also running a 180-gallon Fish-Only system with some non reef-safe fish (really should not be safe with inverts): Dragon Wrasse, Cigar Wrasse, Adorned & Timor wrasse. I also keep a Cinnamon Clown and a Marine Betta.

    Advice I would give to new people coming into the hobby would be to do lots of research and ask a lot of questions. This hobby can be brutal and mistakes can cost you your livestock and tons of money. Go slow, learn, and this can be a hobby you can fully enjoy. For me it’s very relaxing, and I love it.

    Do you think it's useful to belong to a local aquarium club?

    I think it helps, and I do belong to one here in the SF Bay Area. BAR (Bay Area Reefers.) Having other reefers discussing what they’ve gone through can help you avoid some of the problems. In a lot of clubs there are some seasoned reefers who have been through many ups and downs. Grabbing info from them can greatly help you in the long run.

    Another view of the 200G.
    r2rbobweiga.jpeg
    Photo is courtesy of @Bob Weigant, ©2019, All Rights Reserved.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Reef2Reef offers special thanks today to @Bob Weigant for talking to Reef2Reef about his tanks and his philosophy. @Bob Weigant has two build threads. One is for the 225G, and the other is for the 200G, if you would like to read them.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~

    We encourage all our readers to join the Reef2Reef forum. It’s easy to register, free, and reefkeeping is much easier and more fun in a community of fellow aquarists. We pride ourselves on a warm and family-friendly forum where everyone is welcome. You will also find lots of contests and giveaways with our sponsors.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Author Profile: Cynthia White

    Cynthia received her BA in English from NYU a long long time ago. She has been a freelance writer and editor for over 20 years. In 2018, she won the President's Award from the Professional Writers Association of Canada. Now she is a writer and editor on staff at R2R, where her forum nickname is @Seawitch.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Share This Article