Fluval Spec III 2 Gallon Mixed Reef


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I have failed at keeping corals in four past tanks. Two separate 5gallons, a 13gallon, and a 25gallon. Mostly due to my ignorance and, if I may call it an excuse, life in general.
After 5 years in this hobby, I finally decided to join this community after seeing all the helpful comments and positivity in many posts. Maybe this time, with all of your help I can push through hard times to keep the tank going so I can obtain that ultimate goal of owning a thriving reef tank.

This is my current tank.

Fluval Spec III 2.6 gallon, originally a fresh water tank that I converted to salt.


Current Livestock
CUC comprised of 3 nassarius, 1 mexican turbo, 1 asterina snail, 1 hermit
Yasha Gobi / Candy cane pistol shrimp pair
3 Rock Flower Anenome

1 millepora (rtn'ed most likely due to environment change. it was dipped in DipX a few days ago, now just hoping for the best)
1 ultrablue acro (stn'ed a month ago, but is still alive and hanging on after revive dip)
1 pc rainbow acro
1 green slimer acro
1 pink lemonade acro
3 other acros from TSA
1 bubblegum digi
1 green birdsnest
1 green monti cap
1 red monti cap (hidden left corner)
1 candy cane coral
1 orange plate (right rear)
1 green goni
1 red goni
1 branching duncan
1 ricordea mushroom
8 zoas (4 up front, 4 left rear)
1 green toadstool leather

Regular maintenance
Test daily for ALK
Test Bidaily CAL, PO4
50% water changes on Wednesdays and Sundays.
Nano scraper whenever I feel the need and razorblade glass every Sunday
Feed gobi and shrimp daily, reef frenzy nano frozen

Water Parameters
RedSea blue bucket salt
SAL 35.5
ALK 8.5
CAL 415
MAG 1280
PO4 .03
NO3 2 - 4

CAL and MAG seem a bit low but thats where the tank has been for the last month.
Didnt want to swing it back up too fast so planning on gradually increasing in the coming weeks.

I will post upgrades and equipment next.

Feedback and questions are always welcome!

Tenecor AIO Conversion Kits Now Available!


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Over the years of failing, I've come to find what works and what doesn't when it comes to equipment. More like preferences, but some things just didnt work out...

Fluval Spec III 2.6 Gallon

Previously used as planted betta tank.
Using stock lid. I cut the rear cover off for dosing tubes and skimmer.
The square cut on the right rear is from a previous build in which I had placed the skimmer in the display.

Sicce Micra 158gph (Upgraded from stock 33gph pump)
AI Nero3
I originally ran an Aqamai KPS, which broke down yesterday. Switched over to Nero3 until I find a replacement.

AI Prime HD mounted 6.5in from water surface for average 250-300par top third coverage

Spectrum is based on BRS settings for SPS that I tweaked for my tank using a seneye par meter.
11:30am - 9:30pm with 1hr ramp up and down
After 9:30pm I keep UV/V/RB at 2% and B at 1% for my night time viewings and maintenance.
Lights out at 12am

Blue LED strip (Supplemental, attached to front of lid, running on timer)


Refugium Light (Grow light for makeshift refugium in left rear chamber, running on timer reverse cycle)


Mame Skimmer (Right rear chamber running 24/7 w/ Tetra Whisper 10g)

Only filter I have is a 1in thick mesh sponge to catch larger debris. No sock or floss.

Cobalt Neo-Therm 25w (Right rear chamber)


Vornado Desktop Fan (Running 24/7)


RedSea ReefDose 4

Pump 1 - Reef Energy Plus
Pump 2 - Reef Foundation A
Pump 3 - Reef Foundation B
Pump 4 - Reef Foundaiton C
I got a figidaire portable mini fridge from Walmart to put the reef energy bottle in since it needs to be kept refrigerated. Drilled a hole on the side to feed tubing.

AutoAqua Smart ATO

Unfortunately discontinued. I also have a duetto, but this one has been more reliable.
Eshopps ATO 5g reservoir
Got it at a clearance sale in LFS.


A pic I posted on my hello thread.
Residents are mostly frags. Looking forward to some growth.

Does it matter to you whether your fish are captive-bred or wild caught?

  • I only buy captive bred fish.

    Votes: 97 14.6%
  • It matters, but I will buy either captive-bred or wild-caught.

    Votes: 465 70.1%
  • I think wild-caught fish are the better option.

    Votes: 16 2.4%
  • I don’t care where the fish were bred.

    Votes: 85 12.8%