Swedish fish - behind the scenes rebuilding a public aquarium

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Lazy evening tonight, so here comes a couple of things from the Temporary Aquarium from the past week.

Needed larger frag rocks that won’t tumble over because of clumsy urchins or high flow, so I took out the old saw again. Some coral rocks are more dense then other.. :oops: But I needed the exercise in between all online meetings..
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We got a coral shipment two weeks ago. All corals were light in colour, one almost white. I actually wrote on the delivery report to the wholesale that it was almost a DOA and was pretty sure the colony would be all bleached the next day. Here’s the colony when it came.
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Here’s the colony one week later. Still pretty white, but you can see polyps on some of the white branches.

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And this is the colony today.
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It looks like the zooxanthellae algae’s are spreading up on the white branches.
I haven’t dared to glue the colony yet. I’m afraid to interrupt it’s heeling ;Bucktooth

Finally some behind the scenes footage making a video for World Ocean Day, 8th of June. As you can see we finally got nice weather and temperatures above 20 degrees! :D
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The sexual reproduction experiment tank is in a good period now. It’s spring time in the tank and both light and temp are increasing, which seems to be appreciated by the corals. Temp is now 24,8 degrees, and light intensity is 80% compared to the highest intensity we will run later on in the experiment.
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The algae in the refugium grew like crazy for a period but then seemed to slowed down. For a while we could harvest 1 litre algae per day.
On the latest Triton ICP test iodine was zero. Might have been the explanation We increased the daily dose of iodine, iron and manganese and a week later the macro algae grows well again.
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We did have some annoying Cyanobacteria in this tank. Probably due to quick changes in nutrients in the start. Now we’ve managed to keep the NO3 stable at 1ppm(Salifert) and PO4 between 0,01 and 0,10 for a month and the cyano are gone.
Here are the numbers for today:
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For keeping the temperature down now during summer we have 2 Coral Breeze 8 fans over the sump/refugium.

We hope to get spawning after the summer, sometimes in September. If we are lucky :)

We’re waiting for cameras to film the tank during dusk when we can’t have the tank open.
 
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All good here at the Temporary Aquarium! Preparing for summer and vacations. Lots of manuals need to be written so Mr @Lasse can catch up after 3 months in quarantine (for him, we've gone for more than the regular 72 days.. ;)).
He will be back in the "summer team" and I'm thinking I will give him the deal - for every Acropora he kills, we get a clam from his home tank. :D

Outside the pit is getting deeper and more shaped like the new aquarium building every day. Below you can see some of it. The excavator to the right in the picture is standing in the middle of the future 400000 litre reef tank :)

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Here's another picture from the other side.
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So most of this will be underground then? The outside will be only slightly changed by the access area? That's pretty cool.
The whole new Aquarium building will be underground :)
So the only new things you can see outside when it's ready is a small vestibule for the new entrance and that there will be windows in the arches instead of walls (on the picture from today there are planks where there will be windows/glass).

Perhaps a drawing might be a better way to explain :) Here's one from the architects!
OMTI 1.jpg
 
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I think everything was easier to get approved if we did the new building underground. For many reasons :)
The old building is protected and not allowed to be changed outside. So therefor the new vestibule is just a glass room outside the old building.
And the windows instead of wall was a minor change which can be restored. All stones have been saved with numbers on them! :oops:
Also, it's hard to get a new building approved in this area. And the risk of getting appeals from the neighbors were large. Doing the new building underground we didn't block anyones view!

And for the new Aquarium there were an old application done almost 15-20 years ago for doing a building underground, and it was approved then. But at that time the economy stopped the rebuilding. I think somehow that made it easier to get a new permit for this rebuilding, since it was approved once before. All other things like drawings, plans and staff are changed from 15-20 ago though :)
 
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Back at work after a three days weekend!

I though i might share some ideas I want to try and also the development of our sexual reproduction experiment tank.
You probably think I write too much about this small experiment tank, but I really enjoy setting up this system and to be able to try my ideas and see how much I can control the water chemistry etc :)

With less water volume then our other systems, and a quite large refugium with lots of light and macro algae, this tank can change fast when it comes to KH, NO3 and PO4. The also suspect the refugium to consume a lot of elements like iron and manganese. So it took some time to figure out the dosings, time for refugium lights, feeding etc, to get the numbers to stay stable. Now the tank looks like a mature reef tank, even if it's only about five month old. The cyanobacteria disappeared 1,5 month ago, after several weeks of stable numers in PO4 and KH, and a small deliberate increase of NO3.

So since all look fine, I like to stir things up a bit :)
At the moment we are able to feed a lot, mostly coral food, but still keep the PO4 at 0,03-0,08 ppm. The NO3 is decreasing if we don't add N. So I've let the NO3 slowly decrease from 1,5 ppm, to about 0,2 ppm. This is our readings on Salifert. Triton N-DOC shows 0,97 mg/L N, which give a maximum of NO3 at 4,24 mg/L. After many N-DOC tests, I think our Salifert NO3 test shows a little low, but thats fine. It still shows the same every time, and I'm aware of the deviation. So we have some NO3, but not much.
My plan is to test keeping a very low NO3 while keeping PO4 around 0,05 ppm and feeding a lot. I also want to try out other sources for N then the KNO3 which we've been using for many years.
First we dose amino acids, at the moment we use Red Sea Energy B. I think that might add some N.
Then, a week ago we also started dosing NH4Cl. I want to see if we can use that intstead of NO3, since ammonium is easier to take up by the coral holobiont and the macro algae.
So to sum up -> low NO3, stable PO4, dosing amino and NH4Cl.

This might end up with lots of cyanobacteria, but since we're doing all changes very slow, I think we will be able to stop it if somethings goes wrong.

We already add NH4Cl to one of the large corals systems since three weeks back. In that system there were already some cyanobacteria, so in that system the experiment will be to stop dosing ammonium and see if the cyanobacteria goes away :) But that is another system and a couple more factors playing parts in cyanobacteria situation. So this is all mostly some "aquarist exercise/work out" for me and my colleagues.

I almost forgot the corals! They do fine, in all systems. That's why I have time to tests new things :D
Here somes a couple of pictures from today:


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Pictures from inside the museum, where the old Aquarium used to be. You will see where the stairs and elevator will go down from the entrance hall to the new Aquarium.
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someone should be making a TV show off of this renovation!

I can't wait to come see it. Still looking like early 2022?
 
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someone should be making a TV show off of this renovation!

I can't wait to come see it. Still looking like early 2022?
You mean like slow TV? :D

From what I've understood of the current time plan, early 2022 we're filling up tanks and builing exhibits :) But things changes, so we haven't set a date yet. If everything goes well, I guess we can open in fall 2022. Or perhaps we wait until 2023 when we celebrate 100 years (the Aquarium)!
 
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The summer vacation is getting closer. But I won't let you off that easy! So here's something to think about.
Give me all your pros and cons for a gravity feed skimmer!

In August we will restart the drawing of all pipes, skimmers, sand pressure filters etc. One thing we're talking about is if we should try to feed some of the skimmers by gravity. So the water goes from the overflow, then directly into the skimmer. The skimmers will have an internal pumps getting the skimming going, so this is just for getting water into the skimmer.
We have had one coral tank behind the scenes built like this, and it worked well. You adjusted the flow/water level in the skimmer by adjusting the returpump. Cool :cool:
We will have pipes go directly from the overflow to the sump as well. So we can remove and replace a skimmer without having to stop the return pumps. And they will be dimensioned for max output of the returnpumps.


Okay! I'm ready. Is this a good idea or are we stupid? ;Happy
 

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All tanks are different even if the equipment is the same and the same water is circulating through them.
I think it is a good idea with a recirculating skimmer pump because You can optimize speed and air intake to the pump to get the best bubble size. And that independent of flow through the skimmer. I would have a bypass valve to be able to reduce the skimming without shifting the parameters of the skimmer or reducing the turnover. Overskimming can be a great problem especially when the fishes are small and You have nutritional demanding filterers like tubular worms or soft corals. And the skimmer must be big enough when the fishes have grown up.
 

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The summer vacation is getting closer. But I won't let you off that easy! So here's something to think about.
Give me all your pros and cons for a gravity feed skimmer!

In August we will restart the drawing of all pipes, skimmers, sand pressure filters etc. One thing we're talking about is if we should try to feed some of the skimmers by gravity. So the water goes from the overflow, then directly into the skimmer. The skimmers will have an internal pumps getting the skimming going, so this is just for getting water into the skimmer.
We have had one coral tank behind the scenes built like this, and it worked well. You adjusted the flow/water level in the skimmer by adjusting the returpump. Cool :cool:
We will have pipes go directly from the overflow to the sump as well. So we can remove and replace a skimmer without having to stop the return pumps. And they will be dimensioned for max output of the returnpumps.


Okay! I'm ready. Is this a good idea or are we stupid? ;Happy
I don't see an issue with it. Gravity seems to work very well more often than not, so no concerns there. The only negative I can see is the need to adjust flow to maintain level as things get dirty. Not sure I would recommend it for a hobbyist but an elegant solution for a professional staff.
 

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