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...


    The Reef Aquarium of :
    Joseph Peck aka "2Sunny"

    You can also check out his tank thread here on R2R:


    Your Current System Summary and opening thoughts:
    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 intended to make ease of maintenance a priority.


    Who was responsible for getting you into the hobby?
    My best buddy Mark Johnson in Chicago had a fish only system which got me to visit my local store, but once I saw my first Reef Tank I was awe struck and hooked for life.

    How long have you been doing this?
    I started in the Fall of 2001.

    Who or what in the hobby most influences/inspires you?
    I had the personal good fortune to visit Steve Weast's home in Oregon ( and have worked hard to create a tank 1/2 as beautiful ever since.


    System Profile:
    Display tank: 240 gallon (48 in x 48in x 24in)
    Glass or Acrylic: glass
    Stand: custom 26in tall
    Sump: Agway trough 300 gallons
    Grow-out tank: 180 gallon Oceanic
    Protein skimmer: Marine Technical Concepts HSA-1000
    Carbon/phosphate filtration: dual Tidepool I filters
    Return pump: Iwaki 100RLT
    Water circulation: .Tunze 6105 Stream (dual operated one at a time)
    Lighting (display): 4x400watt Radium, 4x110watt VHO, 4x30watt LED
    Lighting (grow-out): 3x250watt Radium, 2x140watt actinic VHO
    Lighting (refugium): N/A
    Calcium/alkalinity/magnesium dosing: MTC ProCal, B-Ionic
    Kalkwasser reactor: Deltec
    Auto top-off: constant drip fed by Maxijet pump (70 drips a minute)
    Heating/cooling: dual Ebo Jager 250watt heater, fan
    System control: Ranco

    Water Circulation and Flow Summary and Objectives:
    The tank circulation is designed to be minimal at 2 times tank volume per hour, while the primary in tank water movement comes from the Tunzes which are set to pulse at a 3 sec interval with only one Tunze running at a time.


    Water Parameters:
    * Temp: 79 to 82 degrees F
    * pH: 7.9 to 8.4
    * Specific gravity: 1.0265 (35 to 36 ppt)
    * NO3: undetectable
    * Ca: 420 ppm
    * Alk: 7 to 8 dKH
    * Mg: 1250 to 1400 ppm
    * PO4: undetectable
    * Ammonia and nitrites: undetectable


    Lighting Summary and Objectives:
    With my overall goal being to grow light loving SPS including the Oregon Tort and the Tyree Purple Monster, I need to use intense light.

    * Display tank: 16 hours actinic LED, 14 hours 10k VHO, 10 hours 20k MH
    * Grow-out tank: 16 hours actinic VHO, 10 hours 20k MH
    * Refugium: N/A

    Filtration and Water Quality Summary and Objectives:
    My sump includes additional live rock that I clean monthly in old tank water and I believe that greatly enhances the bacteria producing surface area in my system. I add carbon or phosphate remover or 0.5 micron pads on occasion, but remove them after 2 or 3 days. I believe running them continuously leaches too many good ions from the water.



    Calcium/Alkalinity/Magnesium Summary and Objectives:
    With so many hard corals, I obviously have a tremendous demand for Ca, Mg, and alkalinity so in order to keep up with the demand I use nearly every means available to a reefer. The heart of the supply comes from my Deltec Kalkwasser stirrer, but then I use a calcium reactor, and even dose about 500 ml of B-Ionic weekly. I find that the Coralife saltmix I use is high in Mg so I rarely need to dose for that particular ion.

    Fish and Coral Feeding:
    The fish get 6 cubes of frozen food twice daily plus cyclopeez, fish eggs, arctic pods and krill. I do not feed the corals directly.

    1 Coral Beauty
    1 Kole Tang
    1 Royal Gramma
    1 South Seas Devil fish
    1 Tilefish
    1 Yellow Tang
    2 Banggai Cardinal
    2 Longnose Filefish
    2 True Percula
    3 Red-Striped Cardinals
    3 Yellow Clown Gobies
    1 Black Clown Gobie
    25 Damsels
    3 Anthias


    (here are a few pics of a baby bangaii cardinal hiding in the anemone)




    1 Bullseye Pistol Shrimp
    2 Pinstriped Tuxedo Urchins
    2 Skunk Cleaner Shrimp
    5+ emerald crabs
    10+ Peppermint Shrimp
    10+ red leg hermits
    100+ blue leg hermits
    100+ Turbo snails


    Hard Corals
    Acropora Tortuosa (Oregon Tort)
    Acropora Tortuosa (ORA Tort)
    Acropora Lokani (30,000 Leagues)
    Acropora Valida (Tyree Purple Monster)
    Acropora Abrolhosensis
    Acropora Gemmifera
    Acropora Humilis
    Acropora Millepora
    Acropora Nana
    Acropora Plana
    Acropora Prostrata
    Acropora Tenuis
    Acropora Secale
    Montipora Capricornis
    Montipora Digitata






    Soft Corals
    Palythoa (Purple Death)


    What are your future plans for improvement/upgrade of the tank?
    My dream is a basement tank that would be huge perhaps 8 feet deep and 6 feet wide so I could grow some enormous coral heads. Perhaps after the kids get out of college.

    Final Thoughts?
    The most important aspect of Reef Keeping for me has been the development of new friendships and all that I have learned from the community at large. We all bring something special in terms of knowledge, and I encourage everyone to speak up, ask questions and to share with their community whether that be online or in your local reefing clubs because that's what makes this all so much fun!


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