Morbo's 125G

Morbo

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My build actually started back at the end of March. This is my 3rd or 4th tank over the years. As I update my thread at Boston Reefers I'll try and update here as well.

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Peace River

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It looks like you are off to a good start to your tank and your build thread - thanks for all of the pictures! You may want to add a build thread banner (which doubles as a link to your thread) so people can find your thread more easily.

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Morbo

Morbo

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A little background about me and my latest tank.

I've been a member of Boston Reefers in Massachusetts since about 2012. My screen name over there is MrX.

I've 'creeped' on R2R but never created an official account. Someone here stole that name (I'm being sarcastic), so I had to come up with something new.

I've had a number of tanks over the years: 120G 4x2x2, a Red Sea 250, and various others. My original 120G was plumbed through the wall into the basement where it drained into a 40G Breeder (frag tank) and a 100G stock tank.

My current system, pictured above, is a 125G 5ft SCA euro-braced DT, with a 40G Breeder for a sump. The stand and canopy were custom built by the person I bought this system from (he was a carpenter).

I'm running two AI Hydra 32HDs for lights, a third one will be here Wednesday. Currently skimmer-less; we'll see how that goes. Return is a Jebao DCP-5000, and 'powerheads' are 2x Jebao SCP-120 Cross Flow Pump Wavemaker with controllers.

Using a Tunze Osmolator for ATO.

I don't have any type of aquarium controller at this point. In the past I've had Apex (old style). Researching them again now, can't decide between Apex, Apex EL, or the Profilux.

I don't really do any water tests since I've cycled. I'll check salinity once a week when I do a 10G water change.

RODI is the Melev's Reef 150GPD system with booster pump.

This time around I'm trying to enjoy the tank more. It's in my office at home where I spend most of my time. But my back is to the tank. So to try and be able to see it more I threw this together:

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The base piece is actually part of an old treasure chest toybox we had for my daughter (she's 16 now); I think we've had it around for about 14 years.

The piece was already rounded as you see, so I just cut it down some. Then I used the table saw to put the channel to hold the mirror. On one side the channel is just straight (no angle), on the other side I set the blade at 5 degrees.

The mirror I had has beveled edges so it already tilts back a bit. Now I can flip the base over a little if needed to adjust.

I originally bought the mirror, just yesterday, to try and get my Yellow Tang to stop picking on the new Kole Eye Tang (introduced yesterday). The mirror did not seem to work, so now it has a new use.

The Yellow is still picking on the newcomer, but it actually seems to have calmed down a little. Hoping by tomorrow, day 3, that it's all settled.

Funny, because the Kole is a little bigger than the yellow and could probably kick its butt.

Watching them swim sort of near each other now in my new mirror setup. :)
 
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Morbo

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This morning I saw a cleaner shrimp feeler tentacle sticking out of the gyre pump. First thought was that the shrimp got curious and lost a feeler. Found out later when I went to pull it out that the shrimp molted last night... the rest of the molt was attached to the feeler that was sticking out. Grow shrimp grow!

Loving the mirror on my desk. Allows me to check out the tank every so often while I'm working. I noticed today that the Yellow Tang has worked out (most of) its issues with the new Kole Tang.

It also helped me realize that the Carpenters Wrasse was out earlier this morning. Took about two days but it was finally swimming out in the open. Even better, I saw it eating when I fed the tank!

Tonight I think we found out where the Wrasse was hiding. On the right-hand side of the tank there is an overhang/shelf piece of rock just off the sand bed. Looks like its hiding in there; it blends in so well it just looks like a darker shadow.

START EDIT 07/20/2020
Not sure what happened with the R2R forum, but the picture below isn't the one I uploaded. This picture of some purple zoa is something I don't own, and definitely isn't in my tank. If the owner of said coral would like to send it to me, I won't complain. Seems like there are wires crossed somewhere.
END EDIT 07/20/2020

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MrsMorbo and KidsMorbo have told me I must share this list of the fish and their names. Please note, Morbo does not condone, nor does he partake of, naming fish. Here they are in order of tank introduction:

2x Picasso Clownfish - Cora and Rona
2x Banggai Cardinals - Curtis and Snertis
Yellow Tang - Sunny (after the friendly owner of a local small-town grocery store)
Orchid Dottyback - Monica Lewinsky
Sharknose Goby - Bolivia
5x Indian Ocean Lyretail Anthias- The Beatles and Yoko Ono
Lemon Clown Goby - Gibby
Yellow Watchman Goby - Swatch
Skunk cleaner shrimp - Mr. Shrimpy
Yellow-Eye Kole Tang - Koleslaw
Pygmy Angel - Skin-tee
Carpenter's Wrasse - Don

Some other pics:

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Morbo

Morbo

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New AI Hydra 32HD came today. I have two, so this would have brought me up to three.

Unfortunately, it looks like Amazon / Salt Water Aquarium sent me a used one.

The security seal was cut and there are marks on the light that look almost like salt splashes/dried water. The cords look like someone wrapped them up and put them back.

Within 5 minutes of getting it I was on the phone with Amazon customer support and returning it.

Ridiculous.
 
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Morbo

Morbo

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Filtration in my system is made up of:

1. Filter sock (changed once a week when I do a water change)
2. Lots of rock in the main DT, and a couple piles of rubble (used for frags) in the sump
3. A CerMedia MarinePure Block in the sump
4. Hunk of Pom Pom Macroalgae (seems to be growing well)
5. Hunk of Chaeto (not doing too well, I think the Pom Pom is out-competing it)

Like I said in earlier posts, trying to keep things simple this time around.

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Morbo

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Purchased a bonded pair of Hi-Fin Red Banded Gobies and a Red Banded Pistol Shrimp from Diver's Den. To get the free shipping I also purchased an Aussie short-tentacle Plate coral (from DD) and a Tiger Pistol Shrimp from Live Aquaria.

My plan was to try and pair the Tiger Pistol with my Yellow Watchman Goby.

It was all supposed to show up today. The DD stuff arrived on time, but the Tiger Pistol was "Delayed by Mechanical Problems" twice -- once in CA, and again in KY.

My UPS driver (awesome guy) diverted his usual route and brought the package to me. Everything looked alive so I began the acclimation procedure (lights down, float, drip, introduce, etc.).

The gobies went into the tank first after acclimation -- left, front-side of the tank. They stayed right next to each other while I grabbed the shrimp container to move it into the tank. By the time I stood up the female goby had disappeared; the male was still there.

So I placed the shrimp container (little specimen cup) on its side next to the male goby. The goby immediately moved to the shrimp and waggled its tail as if to say "Welcome back little buddy".

The shrimp seemed sluggish, but was moving. To be expected after transport.

Meanwhile, my Daughter found the female goby in the rocks on the left side of the tank. Perfect, that's where I was hoping they'd make a "home".

The male was sort of nudging/guiding the shrimp in that direction. After about 30 minutes (long time to move 12") the shrimp got to the cave where the female was hiding and went in. I was so excited!

The male hung out outside the cave (which is about in the middle, front-to-back, of the tank) and more towards the back corner.

When I fed the tank about 4pm I saw the male grab a few pieces. More good news.

Fast forward to about 9pm, and I see the shrimp outside the cave. Barely looks like it's moving. I watch for a while and it starts to get blown around by the current. *sigh* It's dead already.

RIP little shrimp, we hardly knew ya!

I hope the Tiger Pistol shows up tomorrow and that it fares better.

Any additional tips for acclimation greatly appreciated!
 
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Morbo

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Tiger Pistol Shrimp arrived today. Once again, my awesome UPS driver helped out. He texted me and met me when he got to town to hand off the package.

After acclimation, same as yesterday, but a little longer, the Tiger Pistol is in the tank.

In the video below you can see where he started. It was about two inches from the Yellow Watchman Goby. About an hour later I looked in and they had found each other. Woot!

 
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Morbo

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Rough weekend. Woke up Saturday morning and there was no sign of the Kole Tang. After some looking around my son found it and said "he's hiding in that crevice."

Sadly, it wasn't hiding, it was dead. No signs of disease (but I'm no expert). My best guess is the Yellow Tang was picking on it when I wasn't looking. On Friday I did notice that it hadn't come out of it's "cave" all day, but appeared to be swimming ok.

On the flip-side, we did find the new Hi Fin Red Gobies last night (been in hiding for a while) and the Tiger shrimp we bought for the Yellow Watchman Goby is still alive. Although it looks like the Hi Fin Gobies may have evicted the Yellow Watchman from his home with the Tiger shrimp.
 

revhtree

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Sorry for your loss! :(

But the tank is looking great! Nice scape!
 
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Morbo

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More bad news... just went to do a salinity check. As I went to move the screen top over I looked across the top of the tank.

One of the new Hi Fin Gobies jumped through the 1/4" screen top and got stuck. :(

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The past 4-5 days have been very disappointing. First the Kole Tang then an Anthias. A day later another Anthias. Yesterday a 3rd Anthias -- saw it in the morning, was gone by dinner. Today the Hi Fin.

Parameters all check out (tested twice in the last 4-5 days). Salinity is 1.024-1.025 (tested multiple times). Did a 10G water change Sunday (same thing every week), changed filter sock.

Yesterday I did another 15G change just because. I also added a bag of Chemipure Blue.

I know Ich is present, but I suspect some bullying on the part of the Anthias. I knew before purchasing the Anthias that I'd need to feed more so I added an additional feeding (3x per day) - frozen "fish goo" cube in the morning (in feeder), fresh "goo" around 2-3pm, and another "goo" cube around 8:30pm.

Hopefully the last two Anthias make it.

Now to figure out how to make the screen harder to get out of.
 
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Morbo

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Cora and Rona (Picasso Clowns) succumbed the other day. They were swimming around in their corner, and the Lemon Clown Goby was even 'sleeping' with them. Came into the office the next morning and they were both dead - stuck against the gyre pumps. :(

I've been trying to figure out what happened or what changed. Parameters are all fine, same water changes, etc.

The more I think about it, the more I think it all had to do with feeding.

I went from feeding with a 5ml syringe 2-3 times a day ("fresh" fish goo mix made weekly) to using the frozen fish goo cubes and the magnetic thawer, again 2-3 times a day. Every so often I'd replace the afternoon cube with "fresh" again.

I think what happened was that the more aggressive fish were able to get enough from the thawer, while the more timid ones didn't. This reduced their immunity/strength and led to the Ich outbreak.

I've gone back to more "fresh" feedings with the syringe. The food is dispersed more, giving the survivors more chances to get something to eat.

Survivors:
2x Banggai Cardinals - Curtis and Snertis
Yellow Tang - Sunny (after the friendly owner of a local small-town grocery store)
Lemon Clown Goby - Gibby
Yellow Watchman Goby - Swatch
Skunk cleaner shrimp - Mr. Shrimpy
Pygmy Angel - Skin-tee
Carpenter's Wrasse - Don
Tiger Pistol Shrimp - Unnamed
Hi Fin Red Banded Goby - Unnamed

About two days ago we saw the Hi Fin, the Watchman Goby, and the Tiger Pistol all sharing the same burrow. Pretty cool.
 
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Morbo

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So far the deaths have stopped. Will wait on any further fish purchases for a bit.

The only new changes are the addition of another haul of corals from a WWC Live Sale.

In a week or so my tank will have a skimmer. I won an R2R contest yesterday and am getting a TUNZE DOC Skimmer 9410. Sweet!

Here's my haul from the WWC Live Sale:

Fifth Element Blastomussa
Grapevine Aussie Lord
Green Star Polyps
Lavender Tipped Duncan
Neon Blastomussa
Raspberry Pie Bowerbanki
Superman Montipora
WWC Fairy Tales Aussie Lord
WWC Lemon Tip Clove Polyps
WWC Pandora Zoanthids
WWC Skittles Bomb Cyphastrea
Orange Ricordia
9-pack "Mystery Box":
Red People Eater Zoa
Nuclear Green Star Polyp
Red War Coral
Incredible Hulk Lepto
Hologram Chalice
Neon-green Birdsnest
Lemon-lime Favia
Bi-color Platy
WWC Lavender Platy

Everything has been moved off frag plugs and onto rubble rock. Will make it easier to move things around a bit while I figure out optimal placement. I need to do research on a bunch of these to figure out where they should "really" be.

And some pictures of them in my tank without all the lighting/photog tricks:

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Morbo

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I won the August R2R "WIN a Tunze DOC Skimmer 9410!! Back by popular demand!! It's the BUILT LIKE A TUNZE Giveaway!" and received it yesterday. Super fast turnaround by @[email protected] and @rvitko at TUNZE!

I've been running my 125G (+40B sump) for about 5 months now without a skimmer. I was just recently thinking of purchasing one when I saw the contest thread and thought "why not?".

WOO HOO! I was the winner!

Yesterday was my last day of vacation, so it was perfect timing. I unboxed the DOC Skimmer. It was really nicely packed - outside box protecting the skimmer box itself (some packing peanuts and protective cardboard). The skimmer and associated parts were protected in their own product box with plenty of bubble wrap.

I laid everything out and quickly scanned through the manual. Yeah, I actually RTFM... strange huh?

Putting together the skimmer was pretty straight-forward. I've only owned one skimmer in the past so I don't have a lot of experience putting them together.

The Tunze DOC Skimmer 9410 is super simple to use. I had more trouble finding something around the house to use as a 'shelf' to get the skimmer at the recommended 5.5 - 6.0" of water. The only adjustments are the 'screw' on the air bubble line and the ability to raise or lower the skimmer post-filter height.

I know most skimmers don't immediately start making skimmate and that there's usually a break-in period. I was ready to let it run for days, or a week, before I started to see worthwhile frothiness.

There was one point where I was messing with the air knob when things went crazy and the skimmer cup filled with water. I just dumped it back in the sump and left it alone to do its thang.

To my surprise less than 6 hours after firing it up I was getting "tea".

When I checked about 18 hours later (the next morning) the skimmer cup was about 1/2-full of darker "tea" and some chunky nastiness (not a lot, just bits here and there).

I was easily able to remove the skimmer cup and dump it down the drain. A quick rinse of the cup itself, and then back into the skimmer body. I didn't even turn off the skimmer while I did this.

I wasn't really paying attention to the time, but the next time I looked the foaming was back in action.

As of writing this , about 12 hours later, there's just under a 1/4" of "tea" in the skimmer cup.

Tomorrow I'll look at the manual again just to re-read the suggestions to get a darker/thicker/dryer skim.

All in all I'm very happy with this DOC Skimmer from Tunze!

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Morbo

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Tunze DOC Skimmer is working well. Think I'm going to run it overnight instead of 24/7.

Today we picked up a Blue Manadarin Goby (Aqua-cultured). We should have a ton of pods in the tank thanks to our purchase from @hollback.

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