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JamesL's 75g Blog


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So I thought I would start a tank blog on this forum to share pictures and progress of my tank.

The basics:

- 24 gallon Aquapod, started last march.

- Power compact lights (50/50 Daylight, 50/50 Actinics)

- Two MJ900 pumps in second chamber, one goes to a hydor roatating deflector, the other to a locline spray bar.

- Sapphire in-tank skimmer in the first chamber.

I had a bad tank crash about two months ago after I did some major re-arranging and kicked up lots of organic matter that zapped the oxygen. Lost all original fish, most of the inverts, and part of the corals. The tank has been nursed back to health, along with better tank keeping habits (i.e. using RO/ID water instead of Tap, skimmer, etc).

Since today I got a big shipment of corals in, I thought it would be a good point to start this blog. For those interested in the complete history of the tank, you can read it on my Nano-Reef.com tank page.

Back to the good stuff. Last weekend I got a Heliofungai long tentacle plate coral. It is awesome! And it is huge :angry: I love taking pictures of it. Today I got a shipment of corals from SeaCrop to re-stock my tank. They are a great company. The packaging was superb (like breaking into Fort Knox to open the box and Styrofoam), and the coral frags are a very generous size for the price.

So without further yakking, here are the pictures. All pictures taken under the tanks PC (daylight/actinic) lights, with no camera flash. Most of the pictures are taken 1-4 hours after the corals where acclimated and placed in the tank (gives credence to SeaCrop for them opening up so quickly). Click on any picture for a large one.


All the new goodies temperature acclimating.


Regular frogspawn.


Purple/pink frogspawn.


Green tipped torch.


Orange Bullseye Mushrooms.


Pipe Organ.


Green daisy polyps (these looked like they took the shipping the hardest).


Clove polyps (also slow to open).

More pics to come....

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And the rest of the pics ...


Green/Brown Candy Cane (these thing inflated like crazy!).


Burn your eyes out Electric Green Candy Canes.


Same electric green candy, but messed with the camera to show there is actual flesh there.


Green Galaxia (notice the small polyp forming on the lower left).


The Orange Grove :angry: (Sun Coral and frag of green slipper from SeaCrop, orange plate is recovering nicely).


No set of pictures would be complete without a close-up my my awesome long tentacle plate.


And lastly, the full tank shot (I still need to work on taking these ....)

Se there it is. Just fed the tank, and that torch is a pig! Both it and my long tentacle plate love the mysis. And tonight my orange plate finally ate again, it has been recovering from a vicious bi-color blennie that was picking on it (caught the blennie last weekend and took to store).

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Hi seahorse, I am new to reefing and i have a 24AP too for about 4 months(pics of my tank on nano-reef under "phamily"). Thanks for posting your experience/progress with your nano tank over the past year. It was very interesting and good learning tool reading your 4 pages updates on nano-reef. Oh, I had a hair and green/brown algae outbreak a few month ago and used 1)Kent phosphate sponge to lower my phosphate, 2) cut back on my light cycle and 3) added an 1emerald and 4scarlet crabs and got rid of those nasty algae. I am glad to find another Austinite on nano-reef. Your tank is looking much better now...goodluck.

Oh are you still having problem with the heat problem? I used a desk fan to cool down my MH whenever it is on. Tank temp is stable at 79-81. Is your sapphire still producing microbubbles? I also bought that skimmer about 1.5 month ago...it works great with getting out all the nasty skimmate, but I am still having a little problem with microbubbles getting in the main tank. I tried adding a sponge wedge between the opening of the two chambers to trap the bubbles but not helping much. any suggestion would be greatly appreciated.



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Oh are you still having problem with the heat problem? I used a desk fan to cool down my MH whenever it is on. Tank temp is stable at 79-81. Is your sapphire still producing microbubbles? I also bought that skimmer about 1.5 month ago...it works great with getting out all the nasty skimmate, but I am still having a little problem with microbubbles getting in the main tank. I tried adding a sponge wedge between the opening of the two chambers to trap the bubbles but not helping much. any suggestion would be greatly appreciated.



Thanks for the compliments ... both my wife and I are really enjoying the tank now ... we have chairs on each side of it, and we sit there each night watching the goings on.

Heat problems haven't been bad, but that might be because of it not being too hot outside yet. I will have to keep an eye on it this summer.

And as for the microbubbles ... well, I run the skimmer only at night now, so I don't really notice them anymore. I think they are still there, just not as bad as before. I also tried something similar to the foam block, but with a bad of Chemi-Pure.... and that didn't help. But I still like the skimmer.

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Well, the tank continues to progress nicely. Not sure why, but a few weeks ago all of my snails decided they finally liked hair algae (not complaining! :angry: ). And not just "like it" ... they "loved it"! So much, that now the tank is pretty much 99.9999999% hair algae free!

Since last post, I caught the strawberry basslet (teach him to eat my Heliofungia shrimp!!) and used the credit to help buy 2 yellow clown gobies and 1 hi-fin striped shrimp goby. One of the yellow clown gobies didn't make it through the night ... found him in the claws of my sally light foot. :o Needless to say, was not happy ... tried catching the stupid crab, but no luck .. stupid thing is too smart. But the other clown goby has taken refuge in my huge toadstool leather coral and has been safe. And the hi-fin paired up with my existing pistol, so now I get to see my pistol shrimp out a whole lot more!

Here are some pictures .. all are click-able for x-tra large versions.


Clown Goby sitting in his protective toadstool leather coral.

And here is a series of pictures showing the demise and re-birth of the tank since January:

January 30th, 2007:


March 1st, 2007:


And recently, A 99% Hair Algae Free and Healthy Tank:


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  • 3 weeks later...

Ok, why has everyone been holding out this big secret on how easy refractometers are?!?!? (OK, not really, I just had to wait till I broke my swing arm hydrometer) :)

I got one from Marine Depot, and man do I love it!! I am impressed that I still can mix 1.025 water in one try B)

Other than that, tank is doing great. My clove polyps are growing and starting to spread onto a bigger piece of live rock. I am watching one candy cane that is not looking so hot, but that might be because it is splitting.

I am looking forward to getting my zoom lens later this week!

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I ageed wih you, first I had swing arm and I assume that there was 1.026 for three months and I lost cleaner shrimp and a fish. I blamed the for bad species so I ordered Refractometer and impacted me that salinty is 1.030. :) I don't trust the cheapest and plastic anymore, trust the expnesive equipment and you and fishes will happy with that. :D

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I got my new zoom (70mm-300mm) lens today! Man, oh, man is taking close up pictures a lot harder. Especially outside where a tripod is not practical. Out of over 350+ pictures, only a handful came out in focus, not blurry, and decent. I guess I gave a lot of practice and learning to do :) (The upcoming meeting about tank photography could not have come at a better time! B) )

Here are a two from the fish tank that came out good (click on them for larger pictures):


Clove Polyps




Edit: Adding a picture of the sun coral now that the tank lights have been off for a while.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Phew .. avoided a coral war this weekend. While walking by the tank I noticed my Galaxia coral had a sweeper tentacle touching one of my orange ricordias! :) So I put the Galaxia coral to the back right of the tank where it can grow for quite a long time and not bother anything. In it's place, I moved my CPR tongue coral up to the front left. This I got from SeaCrop and it has continues to heal and grow very nicely.

I added two white porcelain crabs this weekend. They are not too adventurous, as they have both pretty much stayed around the leather coral where I first put them in at.

Been playing around with the new zoom lens some more, and here are a few new pictures (click on any for a larger view). I can not wait for the ARC meeting ... I am in serious need of some close-up shooting tips.


The two new residents.


Finally a good shot of my yellow watchman goby. He likes to sit between those two ricordias.


The two frogspawn.


Best close-up picture I could get of one of the new porcelain crabs.


Green Zoanthids.


Fire and Ice Zoanthids.


Latest full tank shot.

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  • 3 weeks later...

<!--quoteo(post=0:date=Jun 15 2007, 04:27 PM:name=dapettit)--><div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(dapettit @ Jun 15 2007, 04:27 PM)</div><div class='quotemain'><!--quotec-->nice photos. What kind of equipment are you using?<!--QuoteEnd--></div><!--QuoteEEnd-->


Camera: Canon Digital Rebel SLR (the original one, so 5 MP I think). Close up lens is a 70-300mm Sigma, and the FTS was done with the standard 18-55mm Canon lens. Of course a tripod was involved <img src="http://www.austinreefclub.com/public/style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/smile.gif" style="vertical-align:middle" emoid=":)" border="0" alt="smile.gif" /> All pictures were taken with just the tank lights (Power Compacts with Actinics).

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A little off topic, but thought I would share two pictures of the tank I won at the last ARC meeting. I set it up as freshwater, and added the first residents this weekend. Currently there are 5 cardinal tetras, 3 panda cory cats, and 1 crowntail betta (wife named him Bruce).

Here is the best FTS I could get (the curved tank is tricky to photograph!):




Thanks again for the awesome meeting!

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NICE! Bettas never get old. The tanks looks really good. I bet it was a touch easier then setting up a salt tank.

Hehe .. yes, it was a lot easier to set up :)

How many gallons is that?

Also, what happens when you put a quarter in it, and turn the knob? JK

Looks good.

If you put a quarter in, it looks like a silver dollar :) Depends on how you look at stuff in the tank, things get really magnified. My wife really likes the design of it ... I find it frustrating at times not being able to see everything at once.

It is 16 gallons. Just the right size for the spot in the study where we have it.

My wide has now asked me if we are going to have a fish tank in every room ... now I like the thought of that B)

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  • 2 months later...

Ok, so I have been lacking in keeping up this blog. But I also have been lacking in taking pictures too. And only slightly lacking in maintenance on the tank ^_^

So without further ado... Pictures!! Click on them for larger versions.

Blue Zoanthids:


One of the 2 new Cinnamon Clowns (not the greatest picture):


Orange Ricordia:


Daisy Clove Polyps:


Red Hermit Crab:


Galaxia Coral:


Full Tank Shot:


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Nice looking tank! I like the clown pic. You should enter it in the photo contest this month.

Thanks! I would have entered a picture of my cinnamon clowns if I could have gotten a better picture of them. Instead I entered my peek-a-boo maroon picture. Though your waving clownfish picture is going to be hard to beat ^_^

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