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Reef Keeping Acronymns


This is a list of commonly used acronyms used on aquarium forums.


AA=Amino Acid

AC=Activated Carbon

AC=Alternating Current

Acan Lord=Acanthastrea

AEFW=Acro Eating Flat Worms

AFAIK = As far as I know

AFM=Aquarium Fish Monthly, magazine

AGA=All-Glass Aquarium

AGE=Acrylic and Glass Exhibits


Amp=Measure of electrical energy

ASW=Artificial Sea Water

ATC=Automatic Temperature Control

ATO=Auto Top Off

ATS=Algae Turf Scrubber

AZA=Association of Zoos & Aquariums

BB=Bare Bottom


BOD=Biological Oxygen Demand

BZA=Blue Zoo Aquatics

BTA=Bubble Tipped Anemone

BTU=British Thermal Unit

BTW=By The Way


CBB=Copper Band Butterfly

CC=Counter Current (type of protein skimmer)

CC=Crushed Coral

CFL=Compact Fluorescent Lamp

CL=Closed Loop

CO2=Carbon Dioxide

CSL=Custom Sea Life

CTA=Cellulose Ariacetate

C2C=Coast To Coast


CUC=Clean Up Crew

CWCS=Continuous Water Change System


DAMHIKT=Don't Ask Me How I Know This

DC=Direct Current

DD=Downdraft (type of protein skimmer)

DE=Double Ended

DFS=Drs. Foster and Smith


DIY=Do It Yourself

dKh=German Degrees of Hardness

DO=Dissolved Oxygen

DOC=Dissolved Organic Carbon

DP=Double Post

DT=Display Tank

DSB=Deep Sand Bed

EB=Electronic Ballast

ETA=Estimated Time of Arrival.

FAMA=Freshwater And Marine Aquaria (magazine)

FAQ=Frequently Asked Questions

FFE=Flying Fish Express

FO=Fish Only

FOWLR=Fish Only With Live Rock

FTS=Full Tank Shot


FWIW=For What It's Worth

FWE=Flat Worm Exit

GAC=Granular Activated Carbon

GBR=Great Barrier Reef

GBTA=Green Bubble Tip Anemone

GFCI=Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter

GFI=Ground Fault Interrupter

GFO=Granular Ferric Oxide

GHA=Green Hair Algae

GPD=Gallons Per Day

GPH=Gallons Per Hour

GSM=Gold Striped Maroon

GSP=Green Star Polyps

HA=Hair Algae

HD=Home Depot

HO=High Output (fluorescent light)

HOB=Hang On Back

HOT=Hang On Tank

HTH=Hope This Helps

HQI=Mercury (Hg) Quartz Iodide

IA=Inland Aquatics

IBTL=In Before The Lock

IIRC=If I Recall Correctly

IME=In My Experience

IMHO=In My Humble Opinion

IMNSHO=In My Not So Humble Opinion

IMO=In My Opinion

IO=Instant Ocean


IW=In Wall

JJ=Just Joking

JK=Just Kidding

JM2C=Just My 2 Cents

K=Kelvin (Lighting) 10,000K


KISS=Keep It Simple Stupid



LA=Live Aquaria

LA3/L3=LumenArc 3


LED=Light Emitting Diode

LFS=Local Fish Store

LHS=Local Hardware Store

LMB=Lawn Mower Blenny

LMK=Let Me Know


LOL=Laugh Out Loud

LPH=Liters Per Hour

LPS=Large Polyped Scleractinian (Stony) coral

LRB=Little Red Bugs

LR=Live Rock

LS=Live Sand

LTA=Long Tentacle Anemone

MACNA=Marine Aquaria Conference of North America, held annually

MASNA=Marine Aquarium Societies of North America

MB=Magnetic Ballast

MD=Marine Depot

meq/L=Micro-equalities per Liter

Mg or Mag=Magnesium

MH=Metal Halide light

Milli=Acropora Millipora


MM=Miracle Mud

MO=Mail Order

nTOTM=Nano Tank of the Month


NNR=Natural Nitrate Reduction

NO=Normal Output (fluorescent light)



NPS=Non Photosynthetic

NSW=Natural Sea Water

NTS=New Tank Syndrome

NTTH=New To The Hobby


OM=Ocean motions (4 way pump)

OP=Original Poster

ORP=Oxygen Redox Potential

OTS=Old Tank Syndrome

PA=Premium Aquatics

PAR=Photosynthetic Active Radiation

PB=Pulse Ballast

PBITAWA=Pour Bleach In Tank And Walk Away

PBT=Powder Blue Tang

PC=Power Compact (fluorescent light)

PE=Polyp Extension


PITA=Pain In The A**

PM=Private Message


PPM=Parts Per Million

PPT=Parts Per Thousand

PS=Protein Skimmer

PVC=Poly Vinyl Chloride

QT=Quarantine Tank

RBTA=Rose Bubble Tipped Anemone

RC=Reef Central

RC=Reef Crystals

RDSB=Remote Deep Sand Bed


RK=Reef Keeping, on-line aquarium magazine

RO=Reverse Osmosis

RODI=Reverse Osmosis, Deionization

ROFLMAO=Roll On Floor Laugh My A** Off

RR=Reef Ready, (aquaria with pre-drilled holes and overflows)

RSM=Red Slime Remover

RTN=Rapid Tissue Necrosis

RUGF=Reverse Under Gravel Filter

SCWD=Switching Current Water Director

SE=Single Ended

SG=Specific Gravity


SPS=Small Polyped Scleractinian (Stony) coral

SSB=Shallow Sand Bed

Sticky=Always on top forum thread that does not expire

STN=Slow Tissue Necrosis

SW=Salt Water / Sea Water

TP=Tang police

TBH=To Be Honest

TBS=Tampa Bay Saltwater

TDS=Total Dissolved Solids

TFC=Thin Film Composite, type of RO membrane

ThOTM=Thread Of The Month

TIA=Thanks In Advance

TIC=Total Inorganic Carbon

TOC=Total Organic Carbon

TOTM=Tank of the Month


TRT=The Reef Tank (aquarium bulletin board)

TTT=To The Top

TWP=Tap Water Purifier (from Aquatic Pharmaceuticals)

UGF=Under Gravel Filter

ULNS=Ultra Low Nutrient System

UV=Ultra Violet


VHO=Very High Output (fluorescent light)

VSV=Vodka Sugar Vinegar


WC=Water Change

WD=Wet-Dry (a method of aquarium filtration)


WNL=Within Normal Limits

WPG=Watts Per Gallon

WTB=Want To Buy

WTS=Want To Sell

WTT=Want To Trade

WQ=Water Quality

YGM=You Got Mail

YGPM=You've Got Private Message

YMMV=Your Mileage May Vary (your specific results may vary from mine)

YWG=Yellow Watchman Goby

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