Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Saltwater Tank Update

We've had the saltwater aquarium for three months and I am starting to begin to understand what needs to be done to keep it up and running smoothly. The original intention was to have it as a reef aquarium but I haven't felt comfortable enough to start adding corals until now.

I feel like I just got a handle on keeping the water parameters in check so I didn't want to throw in something else and try to keep up with the parameters for keeping corals as well. I also felt like I wasn't getting the best advice from our local saltwater fish store where we bought the tank and who helps me maintain it. In learning about the tank and doing research, I've discovered that they haven't made the best recommendations for some of the critters they've recommended. Case in point, Chloe liked a shrimp in one of the tanks as well as an orange starfish. The owner said, "Mom, let the kids have what they want, you have a big enough tank!" Well, we do have a big enough tank, but I discovered shortly after that the orange starfish was not only expensive, but also really hard to keep--as in only for experts who monitor their water quality hourly and want to target/hand feed animals in their tank. Not I. Also, they cute little shrimp he sold me is NOT a reef-safe shrimp, meaning he eats corals. He's cute, but he's going to have to go.

So, when it came time to start researching corals, I turned to books and research. I don't feel like I can trust my aquarium store to lead me in the right direction all the time and I wanted to come armed with information, not just an open wallet. In researching, I found an online, reputable coral dealer who was having a 40% off sale. I thought it was a great way to add corals, at a discount, to see if I could maintain all the parameters to keep them healthy and make them grow.

So, without further ado, here's the latest additions to the tank--

My overnight shipment of corals.



The tank with the corals placed in. You can see the purple plate coral on the sand bed in the lower left.

The acan coral frag and my damsels.

The is squishy the brittle starfish and pal, Mustache.


A zoanthid coral frag.


This is a green zoanthid coral frag. It has really done well and has new polyps.

A close up of a hermit on the clean up crew.

A snail doing some housecleaning by the glass.

The acan coral frag up close.

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