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The evolution of a living tank...FYI

Posted 01/17/2017 at 05:50 PM by Sk8r

There was a time the earth was pretty much rock and water.
Somewhere, probably around volcanic deep sea vents, in the pores of the rocks, life got started, chains of amino acids, dna, rna, etc---and we got, yes, slime.
We got algae.
We got cyanobacteria which happily took up carbon and water and spat out oxygen after absorbing energy from the sun (photosynthesis)---this was a bad thing for things that didn't like oxygen, but it was good for, well, everybody who wasn't a microbe...
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Slime coats---important for your fishes' health.

Posted 01/11/2017 at 11:38 AM by Sk8r

Slime coats and you...yes, they matter.
Fish have an insulation, a slime/moisture that coats their bodies and protects them from both iffy water acidity and chance encounters with parasites; it also may limit bleeding in injury and promote healing of minor scrapes.

Things that diminish the slime coat: the alkalinity of your water being out of bounds (the range should be 7.9-9.0 on the dkh scale, and if you aren't testing your alkalinity weekly, you should be. Daily, when just...
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Stop before buying coral. Read this.

Posted 09/10/2016 at 12:59 PM by Sk8r

Do NOT buy coral while your tank is still having problems like massive algae, excessive cyano (most tanks get a little now and again).

Do not buy corals until you have 1) proper lighting 2) test kits to be sure your water is ok. And supplements to KEEP your water ok. 3) dips and in the case of softies (and stonies you don't trust) an observation tank with proper lighting.

First, the lighting. If you do not have light it hurts your eyes to look toward, no sps (colored...
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pest species, aiptasia, etc: some have problems; some don't: why?

Posted 08/19/2016 at 12:11 PM by Sk8r

Everybody has certain unwanted species arrive. NOT everybody has them take off and become a pita.
An exception is caulerpa algae in your rockwork: THAT is a plague that can cost you all your rockwork if your tank is too small to accommodate one of the only species that will eat it (rabbit).

Hair algae is a piffle. Most everybody gets it. A tank that continues to have it past a few weeks has a lot of phosphate it shouldn't have. Instead of buying a critter alleged to eat it---get...
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Hidden reasons for 'failure to thrive.'

Posted 08/09/2016 at 10:01 AM by Sk8r

Often it's the things you CAN'T see that cause the fail...
The ones that sneakily do in your corals or make your fish susceptible to problems.
This is where you need a) a decent skimmer (2x your tank system volume is a good measure) to handle nitrate b) strong water flow---limp flow doesn't oxygenate enough: your fish should work a little holding place at some points. c) do your water changes to replace the micro-traces your fish/corals may use up....
In other words, its the...
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