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Featured Getting there - 34 imperial gallon (155ltrs) Fluval Osaka

Discussion in 'Medium Tanks (31-100gal)' started by BoPeep, Sep 22, 2015.

  1. leopardshark

    leopardshark Registered

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    Your welcome ...
     
  2. BoPeep

    BoPeep Registered

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    Hi All,

    Just thought I would post a quick message to keep the thread alive.

    All is going well and after daily testing after 2 W/C's and less feeding my Nitrates are down from 60ppm to less than 20pmm which is pleasing. My plan is continue with the reduced feeding and also conduct another W/C in about a week or so. After this I would expect my Nitrates to be down to a more reasonable level. As I said before, I am not after 0ppm Nitrate reading and I would be more than happy with 5ppm to 10ppm.

    I think my reduced feeding and the next W/C will bring it down to 10ppm if the previous methods I have put in place are anything to go by as they did have the desired effect much to my surprise and pleasure.

    Sorry to say that there is nothing much to report really other than I have added a couple of cleaner shrimp, simply because I got a good deal on them (£10 for the 2) and they are beneficial. I now have 3 shrimp, 2 cleaners and 1 Blood/ Fire shrimp and after a little bit of "boxing" there all seem to be getting along just fine now.

    Many Tangs do get feed Nori but mixed in with their food and they do not get the idea of a Nori suction clip which they stay well away from. Frustrating is not the word, it is just there for them and even the clowns take to odd nibble. I can only put the Tangs reluctance to approach the Nori clip down to their young age and being small. I suspect they have never had any experience of this device before hence their hesitation

    Anyway, the only thing I have to add is few new pictures. Nothing exciting but it keeps the thread alive:

    I really do love my Hammer, it is growing by the day and from 2 heads I now have 3 although it was well on the way to 3 heads when I got it:

    IMG_2035.jpg

    IMG_2061.jpg

    My Toadstool may need to be relocated because when fully extended he is a fair size of maybe 6-7" wide and considering he was less that half this size when I got him (more height than width even) I suspect he may turn into a monster:

    IMG_2027.jpg

    I have had to relocate the Favia because, although I knew they have sweepers, I did not know their sweepers could be so long. I have seen them some nights extending at least 6-7" and with them being very aggressive I could not take any chances with other corals within 10" of it. Now it is isolated away from others:

    IMG_2028.jpg

    I love my Gonis too (probably my favorite coral so if anyone in the area want rid of any you know where to come) although I am still finding it hard to get on the right side of my Purple, the Green is doing fantastic:

    IMG_2029.jpg

    IMG_2062.jpg

    Next are a few random pictures:

    IMG_2050.jpg

    IMG_2055.jpg

    IMG_2063.jpg


    As I speak, the Tangs have finally realised the purpose of the Nori Clip and now they are having a feast which is reassuring. Mother always told me to eat my greens and it is hard getting the same message through to young fish but at least natural instinct has prevailed.

    Best regards everyone and hope all your setups are going well.
     
  3. BoPeep

    BoPeep Registered

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    Hi All,

    Nitrate issues solved without the use of NoPox or any other additive.

    I point the finger at Filter Floss in my external canister. I clean my external canister out every 3 weeks at the very most, even 2 weeks when I have the time. A few days ago I cleaned it out and could not believe the state of the Filter Floss. Absolutely filthy as it usually is so I decided to test the water what came out of it after cleaning. It was way off the scale and a deeper colour that I have never seen before. I would guess it was at least 400ppm!

    I put the canister back together, let it run for a day and tested the for nitrate, now I have 5ppm which is fine with me. I have gone from 60ppm to just 5 ppm in around a week / 10days simply as a result of 2 decent W/C's, less feeding and the removal of the Filter Floss from the external canister.

    No more Filter Floss for me in my external canister.

    I simply used Filter Floss to polish the water which it does do the job but carbon is just as good in my opinion so back to the carbon.

    Now the arrangement of my 306 canister is Fluval Sponges in the bottom tray, Fluval BioMax in the middle tray and Fluval Carbon in the top try. Now the water appears non existent as if the live stock are floating in thin air.

    I have no doubt that Filter Floss is good as I have seen the results but it is no good in an external canister unless you are prepared to change it at least once a week. In a sump it would be easy to do that but in a canister it is very different ball game.

    No more filter floss for me ever again until my next setup is completed with a sump and only then will its use be considered again which is not certain.
     
  4. leopardshark

    leopardshark Registered

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    When you get your sump .. You're gonna find your trading filter floss for filter socks it never ends
     
  5. BoPeep

    BoPeep Registered

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    Hi All,

    Even though I said no more corals or fish until my upgrade in the new year, I just could now resist a couple of corals I have been on the look out for a long time at a reasonable price.

    I have searched all over for a Purple Brush Gorgonian and although they are available they have not been local. If I were to buy I would have to consider silly delivery cost and the potential damage by the heavy careless hands of the postage system so that option was out of the question.

    By chance my favorite, reliable, and trusted LFS, after weeks of nagging, managed to get a couple in at an excellent price considering their size (7"+) so I dashed down there and now I have this stunner:

    IMG_2120.jpg

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    I also could not resist a bonny Purple Stylophora, again cheap as chips, which is also a good size, shape and colour (although these pictures do not do it any justice):

    IMG_2117.jpg

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    This LFS I use are absolutely fantastic, great people, not a huge chain, just a small shop were customer are taken care of very well. I know I am not allowed to mention non sponsors on here which is a shame but I have nothing but praise for them and they just get better and better.
     
  6. leopardshark

    leopardshark Registered

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    where on the list was that again??

    Lol.. I may have to source one of those stylophoras they are pretty

     
  7. BoPeep

    BoPeep Registered

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    Haha, the Gorg was on the list but this specific one only (Muriceopsis Flavida) and I have hit the jackpot with it. Exactly what I wanted and around the perfect size too, not to mention the bargain price.

    As for the Purple Stylophora, it was not on the list but I love the colour and it appears very healthy so, again, the size, shape and bargain price, I simply could not refuse.

    You know how it is, kid in a sweet shop and all that.

    Where are you Leopard because if around the Humberside area you need to visit this particular LFS because the quality, prices and owners are totally amazing.
     
  8. leopardshark

    leopardshark Registered

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    Wolverhampton

    Lfs around me no good not for coral anyhow buy a lot of moc ahem'
     
  9. BoPeep

    BoPeep Registered

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    I see, travel is not an option then as it wouldn't be cost effective.

    I have bought MOC once from that well know selling sight and have been very pleased........Hammers and Flavia but I am sure you will agree, it is always better seeing the in the flesh. Regardless, if you are happy with the products you order then fair play.

    Around my area I have 5/6 which are worth a look but only 2 which I trust totally. I mainly stick to just the 1 because I have never ever had an issue and if that ever happened I know for a fact it would be resolved very swiftly to my total satisfaction.

    Sometimes I have found that there are some very decent deals on FB forum pages from individual hobbyists and with this area being fairly close knit you know who to trust and who to avoid.
     
  10. BoPeep

    BoPeep Registered

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    Well Folks, it's been a long time since I made any contribution to my tank thread so thought I would give an update.

    Parameters are all good and managed to get my Nitrates down without any additive help.....W/C and less feeding did the trick and now I am sitting between 5ppm to 10ppm which will do me perfectly because I do not want 0ppm Nitrate. Anywhere from from 5ppm to 10ppm was my ideal range as I think a bit of dirt is beneficial for some corals and both corals and fish can tolerate water that is not 0ppm and/or on the dirty side. After all, I do not believe that in any part of the worlds oceans, regardless of where in the world it, has Nitrates at 0ppm.

    There have been a few additions on the coral front which were replacements for some that I got rid of. The ones I have rehoused have paid for the new additions, some other bits and bobs and still have some change Big Thumbs Up. Your Sun Coral also went @warby (the recession continued despite it eating like a pig) and was replaced with the same which has 30+ heads which cost just £11.45 without any recession at all :003::clap:

    The new additions have been a sizable (at least 4" x 4" retracted) Green Head / Purple Stem Goniopora, a Purple Brush Gorgonian, a nice Purple & Green tipped Torch and a colony of Cats Eyes Palythoa which are far better under blues with their bright moron head (despite looking pinky) and lime green centre. All are a million times better under blues and in the flesh. The pictures and video do not do them any justice at all and it is embarrassing to to put them up and describe colours when the they look nook nothing like in the pictures!!!.

    Anyway, a few pictures:

    IMG_2279.jpg

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    I have also attached a video taken yesterday evening, titled "Current State of Play" so with a bit of luck, hopefully, if you click or copy and paste the link on my signature you will see where I am at currently.

    Best regards to all and all your fishy friends.
     
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2015
  11. hillie

    hillie Registered

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    wow, some great photos Big Thumbs Up
     
  12. BoPeep

    BoPeep Registered

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    Good Evening Everyone,

    Long time no see and I simply have not had the time to update, let alone even read through the many interesting threads on here.

    I have a spare bit of time so I though I would post an update of my progress.

    As we all know, stability is the key and I hope I am not speaking too soon or tempting fate but it really appears as though I have got my system to a very stable state. I have a very strict regular schedule which I stick too which involves the following:

    Water Changes - 25ltrs (approx 15%) are done every 2 weeks with the same salt I have used from the very beginning which is iQuatics Ocean Reef Pro using RODI water with usually 0 TDS but has been 8 TDS (when stored for a couple of days) which I have still used without issue. I make a mix the day before because iQuatics advise that the mix should be left 24 hours. The day I do the WC I test PH only and obviously bring up to temp but nothing else because previous experience with this brand, all other elements have always been well within ideal range.

    Feeding - This is very varied with no meal ever being the same on any day. They are feed 3 x per day but minimal and the mixture, because it being very varied, can consist of many ingredients or a single ingredient. I have New Era (Vitalis now) Marine Flake and Pellets, NT Labs Marine Flake with Garlic, Nori, a very wide range of frozen foods including Mysis, Brine Shrimp, Krill, Mussels, Lobster Eggs, Red Plankton and fresh very finely chopped Garlic for the fish and for the corals I have Reef Roids and Powdered Brine Shrimp but some of my corals will readily take Mysis but even more so Lobster Eggs. My Corals even take a varied mixture which I make for the fish such as Mysis, soaked pellets, Lobster Eggs and a sprinkle of powdered brine shrimp. Seriously, I make so many concoctions there is far to many to list and what I do is make a load of it containing each, any and everything then just refreeze it again with RODI water but I also include, with every meal, Continuum Aquatics Bio-Viv (HUFA) which is an added supplement.

    It does sound like a lot of messing around but its not really and when the "batches" are made, they are labeled, frozen and currently I have latterly stacks of it which will last most of next year considering I only feed minimally and a light bio load of just 6 fish and a Blood Shrimp. The meals which I do not feed frozen are either Flakes, with or without Garlic, Pellets or Nori.

    External Canister - Maintenance for this is very strict but simple and take all of 30 minutes at no rush. I found out that filter floss was the cause of my high nitrates so that has been crossed off the list. I clean it out every 2 weeks when I do my WC's. Fluval 306 with sponges in the bottom tray, BioMax in the middle and 1 bag of carbon in the top tray. When I clean it out I simply tip enough water out to open the lid without spillage then rinse the sponges in the remaining water in the canister, add 3 BioMax Rings and take 2 old ones out and add a new bag of carbon. Disassemble the impeller and other "suction" cap, rinse all the components in the existing canister water and a quick brush with a tooth brush. That's the canister done but crud does build up in the silly ribbed hoses so they are disconnected and I have a nifty device which is simply a like a baby bottle cleaner on each end with a rigid but flexible coil, This is pushed down the hose, wriggled about and the existing canister water is poured through and out comes all the crud. The intake tube, ball with holding cage and strainer are disassembled and cleaned with a tooth brush along with the outlet and all is done.

    I have never cleaned my Tunze 9004 Skimmer as it was clean when it was set up and it has only been running less than 3 months and seems to be doing its job fine. I will take it out and clean it after about 6 months or when I see that it not performing as good as it does currently. I empty the cup every 3 days or so but it is never full after that time anyway but I sometimes get a whiff of it so I clean it out using to trusty toothbrush.

    I also use the toothbrush on my Wave Maker and disassemble maybe every 2 weeks to clean the blade, shaft, ring & rubber bung and outermost detectable casing.

    Glass is cleaned every week with a budget magnetic cleaner and my sand bed is never cleaned as my Chalk Goby and Nassarius Snails do a far better job then I ever could.

    When I first started around the end of September using ATM Colony, I tested every day. When things appears to be stabilizing I changed this to 3 x per week but now I test weekly because I have found that to much testing simply wastes your test kits and time when you seem to be getting the same reading which were all well within the ideal ranges.

    I did a WC along with most of the maintenance schedule listed above and tested earlier today and the reading where as follows (which are very similar to all the other readings I have had):

    Temp - 25.2C
    Salinity - 1.025
    PH - 8.4
    Ammonia - 0ppm
    Nitrite - 0ppm
    Nitrate - 5ppm
    Phosphate - 0.02ppm
    KH - 9.4dKH
    CA - 450ppm
    Mag - 1,350ppm

    I am happy with the latest results and after speaking to a couple of LFS, they said that nothing appears wrong. I agree with what most hobbyists say........the eye is the best judge and you will know that something is not right and your own eye will give you this first indication as they is nobody that knows your tank better than you as you pay more attention to it every day. Well, I have not conducted a poll but I think most hobbyists will agree with my statement and I find that I would rather watch my DT than the TV and I do not care one jot if anyone calls me for doing that.

    Stock wise I have the following which I don't think has changed much regarding fish but there has been many changes regarding corals where I have moved some on to make way for more "flowing" species such as Hammers and Torches:

    2 x Clowns
    1 x Small Regal Tang
    1 x Small Yellow Tang
    1 x Chalk Goby
    1 x Royal Gramma

    9 x Turbo Snails
    6 x Nassarius Snails
    1 x Blood Shrimp

    1 x Sun Coral
    1 x Purple & Green Goniopora
    1 x Purple Brush Gorgonian
    1 x Green Star Polyp
    1 x Purple Stylo
    1 x Ultra Green with Blue Tip Torch
    1 x Pinkish with Orange/White Tip Torch
    1 x Duncan Colony (8/9 Heads)
    1 x Gates of Heaven or Cats Eyes Colony (12/13 Heads)
    1 x Green with Purple Tip Hammer (3 Heads)
    1 x Gold Hammer (1 Head)
    1 x Small Plating Montiapora

    Anyway, no more waffle and I have taken a fair few pictures for you to see what you all think.

    From this:

    DT1.jpg

    To this:

    DT2.jpg

    DT3.jpg

    DT4.jpg

    DT5.jpg

    DT6.jpg

    Goniopora:

    G1.jpg

    G2.jpg

    G3.jpg

    G4.jpg

    G5.jpg

    Sun Coral:

    SC1.jpg

    SC2.jpg

    SC3.jpg

    SC4.jpg

    Ultra Green Torch with Blue Tips:

    GT1.jpg

    GT2.jpg

    GT3.jpg

    Gold Hammer:

    GH1.jpg

    Purple Brush Gorgonian:

    PG1.jpg

    As you can clearly see, I have not taken individual pictures of everything and, as always the pictures do them no justice whatsoever but I guess you all get the rough idea of where I am, what I have and what I do which seems to be working out fine so far (TOUCH WOOD!!!!)

    With the new year fast approaching, I was looking forward to my upgrade to the 350 which I already have in storage but now I am starting to worry a bit about the task ahead because no tank transfer is ever easy. Regardless, it has to be done because although the tangs are ok where they are for now due to their small size they can't stay in this current set up and the 350 will be ideal for them.

    Anyway, would love to hear your comments, thoughts, advice and any other things you would like to throw my way.

    Thanks in advance all.
     
  13. BoPeep

    BoPeep Registered

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    Hi All,

    Nothing important or new to report other than the purchase of a Light Purple/Lilac Goniopora to add to the collection.

    All appears to be going well and parameters all well within ideal range so all I can add is a picture fest after a little rearranging.

    There are a lot of pictures which I have taken today so sorry in advance if you get bored.

    IMG_2531.jpg

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    As always. all comments and advice is very welcome and I look forward to any replies.
     
  14. penzo

    penzo Registered

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    Looking good,and I like where the corals are positioned.:thumbup1:
     
  15. BoPeep

    BoPeep Registered

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    Cheers penzo, positioning on the sand bed of the Gonioporas had to arranged the maximize the flow over them because, due to their dense nature, I have previously (very long time ago) experienced uneaten food settling on them and then decaying causing problems such as Brown Jelly disease. Well, that was my explanation for it a few years ago when it happened. Gonioporas are hard even to keep anyway and I seem to be doing fairly well with them touch wood and I think you will have guessed already, they are my favorite coral.

    I need more corals to place on the biggest column because it is looking very bare with just a Stylo on the top which is not doing great as I have noticed a little bit of receding at its base. I find LPS more manageable and forgiving than SPS and besides, I find LPS far much more attractive than SPS hence the reason my DT is 99.9% LPS.

    I will be slowly building up the highest column with corals including a BTA hoping it will stay in place but also have to consider that my 350 will be set up in the new year and what you see here will be transferred into the upgrade. The plan for the 350 is a dedicated area for LR (what you see in my current DT with just a little more added) which will only be positioned at one side/end of the tank. The rest of the tank will be an open space swimming area with corals on the sand bed. I want to get away from masses of LR covering most of the length of the tank. I want a clean open swimming area for the Tangs you currently see to do what they need to do and the rock dwellers have their area too. Basically the upgrade will be, length wise, divided into 3 with 1/3rd LR placed at one end (the structure you see now with a little more LR creating a few more tunnels and caves) and the remaining 2/3rds will be clean swimming area with a few sand based corals and maybe a couple of Gorgonians.

    I do see a problem in my current DT if things continue to grow well......you will see that my Ultra Green Blue tipped Torch and Green Purple tipped Hammer are getting very close to each other and as they are both aggressive, I need them to not grow anymore until my upgrade is set up because they will sting each other. Currently, when fully extended there is less than a inch between them but I will leave them for the time being until I see any fighting.

    Anyway, I have a few ideas of populating the highest column and the open space free swimming area of the upgrade coral wise and 2 of them is even more Gonioporas. I have my order in for a bright red and bright pink one but that will be in the new year most likely.

    Something like these colour wise:

    Pink Goniopora.jpg

    RED.jpg

    I had the chance of a red one exactly like the one above the other day but it was in bad shape with lots of receding and holes so I refused and because it was big I would have been struggling to place it.

    As for the Pink one in the picture I have provided, I contacted the owner but he refuses to sell it but there are others that will come up and I have a couple of LFS's who make regular trips to TMC so I will get exactly what I am after in the end.
     
  16. BoPeep

    BoPeep Registered

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    Any comments and advice from anyone?
     
    Last edited: Dec 18, 2015
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