Let’s talk about stuffing: How full is your tank?

BRS

How full is your tank?

  • My tank is overcrowded.

    Votes: 81 13.7%
  • My tank is nearly full/full but not overcrowded.

    Votes: 192 32.5%
  • My tank is just getting started and growing.

    Votes: 276 46.8%
  • I take a minimalist approach with my tank.

    Votes: 41 6.9%

  • Total voters
    590

Peace River

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Let’s talk about stuffing: How full is your tank?

Not the kind of stuffing that may be part of your Thanksgiving meal, let’s talk about how you have stuffed your tank! Are you constantly fragging and trimming so your corals will fit? Is overcrowding and shading becoming an issue? Or maybe your tank is just getting started or you are a minimalist in reef design? While we are waiting on Thanksgiving dinner, let’s talk about how stuffed your tank is right now!

HBAL_FullTank.jpeg

photo by @HB AL

Do you have a design for your tank or did it just happen? Tell us about it in the discussion below. If you are planning for an SPS-dominant tank, LPS-dominant tanks, anemone, mixed-reef tank, or fish-only (FOWLR), please remember that we have sub-forums for these areas including SPS, LPS, soft coral, mushrooms, zoas, anemones, fish-only, seahorses, and more!


Few more stuffed reef tanks from R2R!

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photo by @jd-woodlands


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photo by @BobbyCline


FULL TANK 2020.jpeg

photo by @RussiReef
FULL TANK 2020.jpeg
 
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revhtree

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My 120g from the year 2008 was pretty STUFFED!!

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i cant think

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Neither of my tanks are full full however they both have a decent amount of coral in. I will admit that my nano (the SPS tank) is rather filled with coral compared to its age. My Nano is only 2 months old although some of the things in there are heading towards 1 year. For example the deresa clam is going to be 1 year old in March 2023.
On the other hand, my LPS/Softie tank (4’ tank) is going to be 3 years old in only 3 weeks and isnt even close to full! Obviously by full I mean with corals… fish is a different matter as seen in the FTS.
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Nano sapiens

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Back-in-the-day when having as much rock as possible was thought to be 'essential' for reef aquariums, they were soon 'stuffed' (even before the corals were added). Many reefers are now more cognizant of creating an aesthetic balance between positive and negative spaces and this has a positive effect on the system's overall functioning and health over time (better flow characteristics, better access to clean more of the sand bed, less disturbance from frequent pruning, space to reposition rock (if needed)).

From what I've observed, the 'stuffing' phenomenon today is quite prevalent in small reef aquariums where just one of two additional pieces of rock, or a few pieces that are simply too large, can be 'too much' (it's a very common thing as most of the rock pieces are of a size that scale better to a medium or large reef aquarium). Add in a few corals (especially branching ones) that successfully grow and it becomes really stuffed in a relatively short period of time.

Case in point, as my 12g has developed over the years I've had to remove a piece of live rock every 5 years or so to keep some 'openness' (negative space). I'm careful to limit most corals with fast branching/vertical growth and also employ 'growth limiting strategies' (while still maintaining good color and health) to mitigate frequent pruning disturbances to the system and just the hassle of regular pruning (gets old with a small system running for a decade and a half).

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vlangel

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I voted that my tank is overcrowded, (because by most aquarists standards my tank is too full) although I don't really believe that it is. I am mindful that my fish are not having to compete for territory and that my coral are not stinging or chemically attacking one another. I feel comfortable that my tank is not so crowded that a slight or even more than slight mishap could mean disaster.

I have a 56 gallon column tank (30"x18"x24"). In it are: clownfish, pajama cardinal, tomini tang, coral beauty angel, yellow watchman goby, green citrin goby, royal Gramma, 2 neon cleaner gobies, 4 masked gobies, a coral banded shrimp, a chiton, a cucumber, a flame scallops, a long with crabs and nassarius snails.

I probably have more than a pound of rock per gallon but some of it is under the DSB for denitrification. Also I have a 30 gallon fuge (with a percula clownfish) for more water column.
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BRS

Have you bred fish in your tanks?

  • I have bred saltwater fish

    Votes: 37 13.2%
  • I have bred freshwater fish

    Votes: 119 42.3%
  • Not yet, but I am interested in breeding fish

    Votes: 66 23.5%
  • I think it is an interesting idea, but not my thing

    Votes: 65 23.1%
  • I am not interested in breeding fish

    Votes: 43 15.3%
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