Chesapeake Bay Oyster Reef Biotope Tank

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TheLarkInn

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I have a question, I’m running a cold water PNW Biotope also with Oysters. Mine started to spawn in my 55 gal and the water was so cloudy I began being concerned it was starting to choke out some creatures (little research shows that oyster spawn ALOT of sperm and eggs into the water). Nems we’re acting as if ammonia was way up but water tests all showed normal.

So just a heads up for you that you might encounter this during the summer times when oysters spawn.
 
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Chasmodes

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Hi everyone. It's been a long time since I've posted an oyster reef tank update, so now I finally have something worth updating and showing. I've kept a sloppy tank with the fish and inverts since my last post about this tank, nothing like my 20g tank when it was in its heyday. But, I've added enough structure to the tank and cleaned things up, and I have a decent selection of fish and invertebrates, so I decided to resume some videos on this topic. I hope you enjoy the update.

 

Peace River

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It is great to see you continuing this thread (and great to see you!)!!! I look forward to the upcoming videos!
 
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Well, I had a near catastrophe today. I was talking to a buddy of mine on the phone while watching the fish in my 20g oyster reef tank. I have three striped blennies, one male and two females. They always come to the front of the tank to beg for food when I show up. Usually the bigger of the two females is first to the front, then that draws the attention of the other two.

Today, like clockwork, the larger female came to the front, followed by the male. After about 10 minutes of talking on the phone, I still hadn't seen the other female. Then, out of the corner of my eye, on top of the glass tank lid, I saw something flop. It was the other female, all dried up. She had been out there for at least 10 minutes before I got down there, maybe more. Next, by instinct, I picked her up and dropped her into the tank. She sank to the bottom and landed upside down, barely breathing but still trying to move a little.

Well, that drew attention of one of the skilletfish that would have gladly taken advantage of her situation and probably would have started to try and feed on her. If I hadn't done anything, the other three skilletfish would have done the same.

So, I quickly ran into my storage area and pulled out my mesh breeder box, and affixed it to the back of the inside of the tank, and put an airstone in there for circulation, then scooped her up and placed her into the breeder. She was on her side barely breathing for several minutes. It didn't look good.

I couldn't take it any more so I decided to leave and check back in 15 minutes and try and come up with a plan to save her. When I checked back, she was sitting upright like blennies do, breathing OK, and swimming around, trying to figure out how to get out of her new prison. She seems OK. I'm going to leave her in there until later, for her sake, to make sure nobody picks on her.


What a relief!
 
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vlangel

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Oh my Kevin, so glad you saw her when you did! It's really awesome when a story has a happy ending, especially when in your heart you are trying to prepare for the worst.
 
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Chasmodes

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Thank you LegalReefer, Dawn and Squid!

Well, sad news, the female blenny that I saved developed a bacterial infection, starting at the tail. I guess that because she was out of the water so long, she lost her protective slime and could never recover. As soon as I saw it, I put her in QT and treated her with antibiotics. The bacterial infection progressed faster than she could recover, and after a few days, over half of her body was consumed by the infection and she stopped eating. When that happens, there is little hope. She passed away that night.

My larger tank is coming along nicely. I have a video linked at the end of the post that shows everything that I've done so far, and what I am going to accomplish by the end of this month or sooner, so less to read LOL. I'm going fish collecting twice this weekend, so I should be able to stock up! I hope that you enjoy the video update.

 
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Chasmodes

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I'll be posting an update soon about my fish collecting adventures this past weekend. I had success catching my target species, but unfortunately, the blennies are too tiny to add to the tank. They'd be fish food for the adult fish in the tank LOL.
 
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vlangel

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Things are really progressing Kevin! I love how your oyster clusters fit together but can be changed up to reconfigure the aquascape. This tank is going to be so cool, I just love the whole idea. It's such a neat biotope and especially with you collecting everything. It's reminiscent of being a kid and making an enclosure for a newly captured pet. Except that this tank has had a lot more thought put into it for the pets' wellbeing, LOL. (My mom usually made me release my captured pets back into the wild for their well-being!).

I can't wait to see it wet and up and running!
 
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Chasmodes

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Thank you so much Dawn. I certainly feel like a kid again when I'm out collecting fish. That never changes. I think that if it did, I'd lose interest in the hobby.

Finally, a fish collecting video. In this video, we go in search of fish for the oyster reef tank. Hope y'all like it!

 
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Chasmodes

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Thanks Floyd! Yeah, I guess that it does a little if I don't clean out my filter and keep up with my water changes! I don't have much mud in there now, just sand from the Bay. I thought about adding a layer of mud underneath to grow eelgrass, but decided against it, at least for now.
 
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