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http://replay.waybackmachine.org/200012040632/http://www.animalnetwork.com/fish2/aqfm/1997/nov/features/1/default.asp

OK its a little long but very interesting. So are we cooling our tanks too much? Also I was surprised to see the temperature fluctuation in natural reefs, up to 12 degrees a day! I'm thinking that I might raise my tank temp up from 78 degrees to 80 degrees. What do you guys think?

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Funny, I read this same article yesterday.

I had my tank between 77-78 and yesterday I upped it to 78-79. Next week, I'm going to up it to 79-80. I used to keep my 75g at 80-81 without any issues, but I decided to follow popular thought when I set-up the 135g and go cooler.

Part of the reason for this change is based on what I read, but the other part is that at 77-78, my chiller was kicking-in every other hour. I think if the tank has proper water flow and aeration, the higher temps are fine.

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Lol, great minds think alike. I was planning to raise it slowly myself too. It will save me money in the summer but will cost me in the winter...heating 400 gallons to 80 won't be easy.

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On that page click the tab that says impatient...to much for me to summarize quickly

That just gives you the link to the main page, which is not functional.

I think part of the reason people keep tanks at lower temps is to prevent things like power outages from being as immediate problems in terms of tank temperatures and because a lot of critters we keep are used to deeper depths which are cooler in the wild. Really unless you're specifically aiming for a biotope and have done your research, you're going to have species ranging from a bunch of different temperature areas under the umbrella of tropical water temperatures. There will be some creatures from the shallows where it's warmer, some from the deep where it's cooler, some from farther from the equator or in a normally towards-equator current that are used to cooler temps, and so on. The important thing is that there is always some fluctuation in temperatures so they should be fine in a decent range, but knowing approximate limits of what can be tolerated, I would keep it a degree or two on the cool side - I usually aim for 78F. Basically, if equipment fails (chiller, AC, whatever), here in Austin the odds are the temp will start to rise, and it seems like the critters we keep are more sensitive to high temperatures (like 82-83 for long term and 85+ for extremely short term) than they are to a few degree colder ones (after all, they're usually fine after airmail transit). I think this is because in the wild the water temperatures really never get past the low 80s, but with cooler currents and winter months, they get down easily to the mid 70s or below.

It's less of a concern for people with large tanks - at least in terms of the power outage thing.

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Here's the nut from the article:

Finally, there is the very real problem of the mixed fauna and flora found in many of our systems. Aquarists tend to mix animals from different geographical areas with joyous abandon. This results in a tank full of animals with a variety of ranges of tolerance depending on whether the animal was from the very warm waters of Indonesia or the cool subtropical waters of the northern Gulf of Mexico. A modification of an old saying would apply here. As a “Jack of all trades is a master of none,” generalized conditions are not good for any tank inhabitant. Maintaining a tank in the upper 70 degree Fahrenheit (24 to 26 degrees Celsius) range will stress any reef inhabitants from the central Indo-Pacific, as it is too cold. And, because this is near the upper limits for subtropical organisms, it will stress them as well. It would be better for all concerned if aquarists concentrated their efforts on maintaining separate systems for organisms from geographically disparate areas.

So as you review the article, we see that our IndoPacific creatures probably don't care too much for our 77-78 degree tanks. Since we are sliding into the summer months and the drought seems to have started, I'm amenable to sliding my temp control up a degree or two to the near 80 mark so maybe our new Aussie colonies and frags will feel more at home!

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so i guess for almost a year i have had no heater, this winter the tank would get down to 76.8 at night and 80 during the day. i didnt see any ill effects. During the summer months my tank stayed around 79.2 night and 80.4 during the day. to this day i havnt had any problems with the corals or fish i have, i thnk its cause its a graduale warming and cooling.

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I haven't read the link but it seems this is a good argument for (local) captive raised animals since they have grown in aquariums. An unfortunate example of this is Calurpa taxofolia's adaptation to cool water. An aquarium acclimated strain was accidentally released into the Mediteranian and is creating monospecies "deserts". The aquarium adapted strain will tolerate much colder water than any of the wild species and has also has adapted to produce high amounts of just a single toxin instead of small amounts of different toxins as found in wild species. Some people might think Xenia is another unfortunate example :lol:, when I first started saltwater it was considered impossible to keep (can you say nutrient export? :D).

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