Dawn's 56 gallon natural nutrient garden

vlangel

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The members' tanks cycle through so fast that I need to look through a lot of pages to find my thread so I figured I would also journal it here. Here is my link:

https://www.reef2reef.com/threads/dawns-natural-nutrient-reef-garden.546312/

I took a video featuring a lot of the critters that reside in this tank: fish, shrimp, crabs, snails, asterina stars, micro starfish and even bristleworms! Once it is uploaded I will post it here.
 
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Hemmdog

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The members' tanks cycle through so fast that I need to look through a lot of pages to find my thread so I figured I would also journal it here. Here is my link:

https://www.reef2reef.com/threads/dawns-natural-nutrient-reef-garden.546312/

I took a video featuring a lot of the critters that reside in this tank: fish, shrimp, crabs, snails, asterina stars, micro starfish and even bristleworms! Once it is uploaded I will post it here.
Very cool! What’s that long blue fish you have, he’s sweet.
 
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vlangel

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Very cool! What’s that long blue fish you have, he’s sweet.
Thank you. The blue fish is a blue gudgeon dartfish. They were extremely shy for the first 2 weeks, so much so that I was afraid that they were going to perish from lack of food. Now however they come out into the water column frequently even when I am not feeding.
 

Dr. Dendrostein

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The members' tanks cycle through so fast that I need to look through a lot of pages to find my thread so I figured I would also journal it here. Here is my link:

https://www.reef2reef.com/threads/dawns-natural-nutrient-reef-garden.546312/

I took a video featuring a lot of the critters that reside in this tank: fish, shrimp, crabs, snails, asterina stars, micro starfish and even bristleworms! Once it is uploaded I will post it here.
Thank you for sharing, comrade
 
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vlangel

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I call this tank a natural nutrient tank because I intentionally run the nutrients high. Since its an aio I do not have a skimmer on it. It gets fed heavily because of the blennies and gobies needing to eat 2-3 Xs a day. I rely on the ornamental macro algaes to utilize all the nutrients in the water. Last week even I was a bit taken back when my testing showed NO3 to be 50 ppm and PO4 to be between 1-2 ppm! The tank is very clean though, so I am getting away with it because of the macros. I am cutting back a bit on the food in hopes of getting it down closer to NO3 being 20 - 30 ppm and PO4 being .5 - 1 ppm for the sake of my inverts. Macro algaes will outcompete nuisance algaes as long as the ratio of nitrates to phosphates is in the 30:1 range and there is enough carbon available.
 
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vlangel

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Going to LEAR was amazing. We got there about 40 minutes to an hour after it started and there was still a huge long line to get in. Fortunately it went fast.

Seeing so many beautiful coral in 1 room was overwhelming. I was not sure whether to shop around or to just buy when I deemed a coral a good price. I ended doing the latter.

I went knowing that I was going to look for ricordia, and a long polyp toadstool. I also thought different color euphyllia would be nice. Beyond that, I wasn't sure.

Well I came home with 14 new coral! It was so much fun. I did not spend more than $35 on any coral. I have 5 new ricordia/yuma/shroom, 2 new acans, 1 new gorg. I saw a very pretty acid washed BTA, (of course he chose to attach to the back of my rock on the left). He's still viewable and feedable so it's ok. And he can't hurt anything else back there. Also I saw a beautiful yellow torch and I always wanted one. There was a green tipped hammer and mine is a purple tipped hammer. And there was green pipe organ, another coral that I always wanted but never tried. On my list was a duncan frag so I had to buy that and also my long polyp toadstool. Lastly I bought those large brownish tan and white palys which I can't recall the name atm. Anyway it was a great day. The coral are in the tank and I will get pics when I can.
 
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vlangel

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I moved the pipe organ and it is much happier, and the same goes for the hammer. I moved the toadstool leather and I am much happier, and the acid washed BTA moved itself and I hope it is finally happy! All the other coral I got are doing great except the non photosynthetic gorge which has yet to open it's polyps.
 
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vlangel

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Last night I came home to find the non photosynthetic gorg half open. I immediately added microvert and phytofeast to the fish food. This morning the whole gorg is open which is very exciting since gorgonians really help create that natural look I am going for.
 
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Best reef aquarium LED lighting
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vlangel

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Beautiful stuff Dawn!!!
Thanks Jesse! I got some really nice coral from the LEAR frag swap and they are filling in my reef nicely. Now, I need to concentrate on keeping them alive and getting them to grow. If I can do that then this tank should be looking pretty good in a year from now.
 
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vlangel

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Marmalade looking very cute as always! by Dawn Gilson, on Flickr
Marmalade is about as cute as they come!
Acans garden on retaining wall. by Dawn Gilson, on Flickr
The GCG is Jet. I have 2 of them but Piper and Jet must be feuding because they live on opposite ends of the tank!
Yellow torch, ricordia and BTA by Dawn Gilson, on Flickr
I am a sucker for any euphillia with waving tentacles in the flow! Torches have challenged me in the past but this one seems off to a good start.
Long polyp toadstool by Dawn Gilson, on Flickr
I know toadstools are a super common coral but I went to LEAR to specifically find one, particularly with long polyps.
Xenia by Dawn Gilson, on Flickr
Another super common coral but I love xenia. RIP Sebastion (Nick) gave this colony to me a year or so back and it has thrived in spite of being moved from tank to tank.
My dartfish are Spirit and Spectre but I can not tell them apart. by Dawn Gilson, on Flickr
Spirit and Spectre are such a pretty shade of blue and they add nice color to the reef.
 
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Top Shelf Aquatics

Do you have any coral frag mounting tricks or tips you have learned that really help you?

  • Yes I have learned some tricks (please share in the thread)

    Votes: 59 22.0%
  • No but I would like to learn some (check the thread)

    Votes: 167 62.3%
  • I don't frag corals

    Votes: 42 15.7%
  • Other (please explain)

    Votes: 0 0.0%

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