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Everything posted by Timfish

  1. Thought I 'd post this picture of an acro colony that has both different colors and different growth form and polyp extension influenced by the water flow over it. The left side is pretty much completely green with a tight dense growth form. The photo's don't show it very well (smart phone is still smarter than me ) but right side is mostly brown with just green tips, a more open growth form and very good polyp extension.
  2. Timfish

    Color and growth influenced by water flow

    Bump. What surprised me when I showed the pictures to Dana Riddle was his comment that this was the first photographic evidence of water flow being the influencing factor in coloration.
  3. Timfish

    SPS turning green

    Well, in addition to my comments and links in my first post above which are still good. The production of flourescing and chromo proteins is very dynamic. There are multiple factors or variables at play. Dr. Salih, in research published in this paper 15 years ago, clearly showed a link in fluorescing protein production tied to light intensity. At intensities too high for the zooxanthellae proteins were made to use as photoprotection, at appropriate levels coral were brown because they didn't need to protect their zooxanthellae and at low levels proteins were made to inhance light to their simbionts. So changes in intensity can certainly effect a shift to green. Additionally age can be a factor as in this Povona cactus coral where the new growth is significantly brighter and greener than the older parts of the colony: Here's an example with polyps with two different color forms. The older polyps are dark red with lighter red mouths and the younger polyps are green with red mouths. This difference in colration may be associated with differences in zooxanthellae clades (like in this video) or may be age related and similar to what's seen with branching type corals. The green and red polyps just below and left of the top is where a rock fell on it, killing the polyps and regrew. And in this post here, I posted pictures of an acro that showed different colors influenced by water flow
  4. Timfish

    HELP!!! Aquarium heater...

    Looks like you have your bases covered pretty good and you've got redundancy. I prefer to mount my heaters vertical like you have for the same reason even if manufacturers recommend a horizontal mounting.
  5. Timfish

    Anyone see this?

    How do you know when it needs calibration, or maybe more importantly how do you know when it's gone out of calibration? With the problems I've seen over the decades with electronics failing and bad reagents I want redundancy to assure reliability. For $6 I'll stick with API which is more than accurate enough. Replacing calcium, magnesium and alkalinity yearly probably costs me ~$60 a year and it's with test kits I've been using and double checking for a couple decades so I have a high confidence factor with them.
  6. Timfish

    HELP!!! Aquarium heater...

    That's good, they are very reliable and certainly the most convienent in my experience. I have seen them fail though and in my holding/frag tanks I use both digital external, glass thermometers and hand held infrared thermometer so I can triple check temps if needed.
  7. Timfish

    HELP!!! Aquarium heater...

    I get titanium heaters. While they may have the same problem with gaskets leaking like glass heaters have they won't blow up like glass heaters. You need to double check your thermometer(s) too. If you're using a heater that displays the temp it needs to be verified with an external thermometer. And if you are using any kind of controller you need to double check the heater port as well.
  8. Timfish

    Coral problem, what do you think?

    What was the magnesium? I'm going to say something missed or unknown if polyps are stopping calcification and dropping off their skeleton. Are you using red and blue grow lights on your refugium? Had a very brief conversation with Nic from BML at the frag swap and they stopped selling grow lights with just the red and blue spectrum because of (some very complicated reason) it screwed with the plants some how. Seems reasonable those LED lights may cause problems if used on refugiums.
  9. Oooops, missed this one too! :-/ It's more than just competing for nutrients. However, to answer your last question first when I fix systems over run with algae often it's because the nutrients have been stripped out and corals simply cannot compete so there are a variety of nuisance algae species present (See my two threads on nuisance algae remediation). SImpley removing the algae gradually with small water changes is all I've found necessary to shift the equilibrium of a system to favor corals. Haas, et al, showed the DOC (Dissolved Organic Carbon) and more specifically the DCNS (Dissolved Combined Neutral Sugars) released by algae promotes heterotrophic microbial processes and pathogenic bacteria on corals. This research proved a major tenet of Rohwer's DDAM model of reef degradation (see Rohwer's book "Coral Reefs in the Microbial Seas"). What complicates this is release of labile DOC varies widely by species and is moderated by some cryptic sponges which remove the labile DOC about 2000 times faster than bacteria. Take these processes and throw in all the things we do that screws with and changes the microbial biome and it doesn't surprise me systems have very frustrating problems that can't be explained with standard explanations. Here's some of the research I've refferenced https://peerj.com/articles/108/?utm_source=TrendMD&utm_campaign=PeerJ_TrendMD_0&utm_medium=TrendMD https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0027973 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23303369 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28895945 http://www.rug.nl/research/portal/files/14555035/13completethesis.pdf https://www.nature.com/articles/nmicrobiol201642 https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0044859
  10. Sorry to take so long to get answer! :/ Yes, ppm and mg/l is one to one. With the problems of phosphate deficiency and the issue with high phosphate affecting calcification a suggested target range for PO4 is .05 to .15 mg/l (ppm). (Obviously I don't adhere to this so feel free to call me hypocritical.) It varies by species but while raising increases growth rates and weight gain PO4 starts interfering with calcification when levels reach .02 to .04 mg/l. Coral's clearly can be kept at levels below .03 mg/l but with the reduction in zooxanthellae it impacts their immune system and depending on heterotrophic feeding (which varies significantly at the species level) small changes in temperature, lighting and nitrogen can have serious impacts on their photobiology and physiology. In simpler terms low phosphate can kill quickly while high phosphate only affects skeletal porosity.
  11. Timfish


    Certainly, but it's more a question of how wise it is to try to add two more clowns to an established pair to get a foursome. I can see the attraction especially if different varieties are added, and it is possible but I think you need to be ready to rehome the new additions as there's a good chance they may not be accepted.
  12. Since corals and algae (and sponges) are influencing the types and species of microbes and there are feedback loops that promote an equilibrium supporting corals or algae I like thinking of it as the microbiome and the macrobiome are dynamicly linked. For the record I see success as having kept an animal for at least it's average natural life expectancy, if not longer. There is no nepthea, the large octocoral in the middle is the very rare Sinularia foliata, which has a fairly heavy demand for calcium to make the spicules that are incorporated into the colony. It is probably safe to say the soft corals have a lot more biomass than acroporids or Pocilloporids for a given colony size/diameter so in that respect I certainly would agree the demand for nitrogen:phosphorus:potassium is a lot higher than than if I just had a tank full of corals from the Acroporid and Pocilloporid families. But from what I've read and my experiences in getting rid of nuisance algae from systems with "ideal" nutrient ratios it's not a matter of having "ideal" numbers for nitrogen:phosphorus:potassium but having healthy corals competing for nitrogen:phosphorus:potassium and promoting autotrophic microbial processes.
  13. Just wanted to show the ATI ICP test results for a mixed reef system maintained with tap water. Often what I've seen when aquarists post problems blame is quickly attributed to water quality issues that aren't supported by the research I've done and experiences I've had over the last couple of decades. The microbial processes are far more important than maintaining "ideal" water parameters. I do not recommend adding corals without acclimating them the majority of the stony corals in this tank were added from systems maintained in acro dominate or ULNS mixed reef systems with "ideal" water parameters without acclimating them. Here's the link to my ATI Aquaristik page. I've posted as current video as well as the test results for both the tap water and system. (Video taken with a Pixel III with White Balance set to "Auto" and a orange filter to cut some of the blue light) Tap water System Analyse40879.pdf
  14. I don't want to sidetrack this thread but Dr. Andreas Haas, who spoke at C4 4 years ago, has clearly shown algae promote pathogenic bacteria to corals via the release of neutral sugars (search "Andreas Haas" and "DCNS" at scholar.google.com for more). It can also takes many months for corals to fully recover from a stress event. More to the problem at hand if you currently have PO4 levels of .03 mg/l what may have very well instigated this problem was a phosphate deficiency. Especially if PO4 levels were lower in the recent past. Researchers at Southampton Univeristy in England conducted research looking at the effects of various nitrogen and phosphate ratios on corals. One of the problems (which I found startling) was with not enough phosphate uric acid crystals form in the coral's cells rupturing the cells. It doesn't strike me as unreasonable this would fascilitate infections which my take out entire colonies with no apparent explanation and the infection could spread to other corals. Here's links to Southampton's research: www.indiaenvironmentportal.org.in/files/file/Nutrient enrichment.pdf https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fmars.2015.00103/full https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0025326X17301601?via%3Dihub I've posted ICP tests of one of my systems in the "Water Chemestry" forum if you want a reference to compare your system too.
  15. Timfish

    Redsea Reefer 450 Build / Upgrade

    I would suggest aiming for a higher number for phosphates. At .02 mg/l PO4 your corals are likely going to be deficient, at the very least you'll have to watch nitrogen very carefully. Here's links to research done by Southampton University showing the problems caused by phosphate deficiency: www.indiaenvironmentportal.org.in/files/file/Nutrient enrichment.pdf https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fmars.2015.00103/full https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0025326X17301601?via%3Dihub
  16. Timfish


    Personality is always going to be a variable when adding any new fish to a system with established fish. You should always be ready to rehome a fish if personality and/or size become an issue. ALso, pesonalities and attitudes can develop over months or years as fish mature so an addition that worked once may not work again months or years later. My guess is your existing pair are still not fully mature and have not yet started breeding yet. If this is correct, this improves the odds of getting a foursome going. But you and your fish are better off just being happy with what you have.
  17. Timfish

    Large worm emerges from rock?

    A guess would be a peanut worm. I would assume it's safe, it seems pretty obvious it's just scavenging for food.
  18. Timfish


    If you're lucky you might get your existing pair to accept them. Odds are you'll need to rehome one of them if not both.
  19. Timfish

    So long Yall

    Man that's a lot of moving in a short time! Good luck in CA! And you can still post whenever!
  20. At this point I'd say you likely have several issues going, unfortunately it looks to me like you've got bacterial infections along with compromised immune systems. Like the above posts I'd definitely get the numbers for PO4 and nitrate. If PO4 has dropped over time creating a phosphate deficiency your corals may look more colorful and as the brown zooxanthellae growth is restricted but by doing so the coral photobiology is adversely affected and with continued growth if feeding isn't increased at some point some corals aren't going to be able to cope. Restricting the zooxanthellae also compromises a coral's immune system potentially making it more susceptable to bacteral infections. You also have an algae scrubber and while it's a very popular addition to reef filtration research done by scientists on reefs show DOC from many algae species promotes heterotrophic bacteria, many of which are pathogenic to corals. being done with algae shows You need to be careful increasing nitrogen (organic or inorganic) without raising phosphates as that can ascerbate a PO4 deficiency (I would suggest keeping PO4 around .1 mg/l). The variable response in your coral colonies shouldn't come as a surprise. Corals immune systems vary significantly at the genotype level and the degree a coral relies on autotrophic or heterotrophic feeding varies significantly between each species. And don't assume corals that appear to be unaffected haven't been impacted. It's impossible for us to measure their actual biomass and difficult to quantify their growth rate on a daily or weekly basis.
  21. Thought this was interesting https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2019/04/190412085221.htm
  22. Timfish

    My First Skimmerless System

    Here's a current video:
  23. Timfish

    My First Skimmerless System

    This is the first system I set up 19 years ago without a skimmer and thought I'd do a thread on it. For the first post I thought I'd start with a video taken a couple years ago: Recent water parameters: Alkalinity 5-10 dKH pH 7.8 - 8.1 Salinity 1.022 - 1.027 Temp 76 - 78 Nitrate 1 ppm
  24. Timfish

    Fiji Follows Hawaii

    Not really. ANd even if Fiji and Indonesia open back up it will likely still take a very long time, months to years, for exports to get back to where there were.