Oxy's RSM250

Discussion in 'Reef Chronicles' started by Oxylebius, Oct 16, 2013.

  1. Oxylebius

    Oxylebius Well-Known Member

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    I never started a reef thread, so here it goes....

    A little background - I've been keeping FW tanks since around '89. Began keeping marine fish in '96. By 2000 I had five tanks running in my house! Including a tank of gold fish which I used to practice fish tagging methods on. Also during 2000-2005 I was maintaining a touch tank for a science center, inverts for biological studies, and maintaining lfs's tanks. Took a hiatus from keeping home tanks from 2002-2007. In early 2008 I set up a 40g marine fish and mobile invert tank.

    In Oct. 2011, I purchased a RSM250 and began to transfer all inhabitants from the 40g to the RSM250. At the time I had three tanks running, now I'm down to the RSM250 and a turtle tank w/guppies.

    Evolution of the RSM250


    October 2011
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    Spent Oct-Mar researching sps and determining what I wanted in my tank. Also filled tank with sand and bought additional live rock. Once cycle was complete, transferred all mobile inverts from 40g to RSM250. I took the set-up very slowly...


    March 2012
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    The tank had some issues with heating up so added a chiller to the system. Also, added ATO and upgraded the heater.

    In March purchased my first batch of sps corals and two 5 month old clowns (from someone who bred them outside Baltimore).


    March 2012
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    Aiptasia went on a breeding spree and the tank also began to get some cyano.


    April 2012
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    Purchased a few more sps corals, and lost a few of the original ones that I bought....


    April 2012 The Ugly Phase
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    Almost all tanks go through an ugly phase and towards the end of April my RSM250 did - got the cyano out, but began to get a horrible thick hair-type (filamentous) green macroalgae that I believe is Chlorodesmis fastigiata. To this day, still haven't found any inverts that eat it. It has herbivore-deterrent properties to prevent being eaten. And aiptasia still is not in check, so I kept ordering more and more peppermint shrimp.

    In June, I had a temperature control problem and lost some sps. I was also dealing with a light combo that I wasn't happy with.

    Aiptasia is still the bane of my tank. I had up to four different peppermint shrimp in the tank, not a one would go for them.
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    In Nov, I had to deal with a power outage. Thanks to suggests from folks here, made it through w/out any issues.


    Dec 2012
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    By Spring 2013, I began a thread showing a years growth of my Monties.


    July 2013
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    Sept 2013
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    In Sept, I had an issue w/super glue. My smallest clown decided to eat a mouth full of fresh soft super glue. It is still alive, thank goodness.


    Oct 2013
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    #1
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2015
  2. ReefLady

    ReefLady Well-Known Member
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    Looking great! Love the progress pics and looks like you're getting some nice growth now!
     
    #2
  3. Gasturbineguy

    Gasturbineguy New Member

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    Yes... well done so far. If the lil aips still annoy ya try some aiptaisa eating nudis. They're crazy good at their job but not sure you ever really get rid of that pest, I never did. One of the main reasons I'm re-doing my tank(s). I have one of the original Aiptasers that doesn't electrocute them as much as produce a very localized chlorine bubble I guess. They really hate that tool lol. Good luck and nice pics! :wave:
     
    #3
  4. Oxylebius

    Oxylebius Well-Known Member

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    I should add one more thing. For the filtration system, I am running the tank w/only a skimmer and carbon (I took out all the foam and ceramic pellet-things). And by doing this my nitrates came under control and the algae is no longer an issue. Come to think of it, it was around this time my corals began to grow faster also. So, I stand by the old saying, less is more.

    Equipment:
    ATO - Tunze 3155
    Chiller - JBJ Arctica
    Heater - Eheim
    Skimmer - Stock model
    Refractometer - Milwaukee MA887
    RODI - Typhoon III
    6xT5HOs (front to back)
    *ATI Coral Plus
    *RS Actinic
    *ATI Coral Plus
    *RS Actinic
    *RS 10,000K
    *ATI Actinic
     
    #4
  5. nanoreefing4fun

    nanoreefing4fun Well-Known Member
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    Cheers for starting a tank thread & sharing ! Tank looks great, really nice sps growth & love the clowns !
     
    #5
  6. Tokalosh

    Tokalosh Well-Known Member

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    Your off to a great start, I'm looking forward to seeing this tank mature over time.

    Tok
     
    #6
  7. whippetguy

    whippetguy Well-Known Member
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    Just curious, do you dose anything? If not, how often and how much do you do water changes? This is a really nice example of being patient and good things will happen.
     
    #7
  8. Reef Commando

    Reef Commando New Member

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    Tank has been coming along really well.

    Nice to see the before, middle and now pics.
     
    #8
  9. kyle4201

    kyle4201 Active Member

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    looking great!!! love the history. :)
     
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  10. Oxylebius

    Oxylebius Well-Known Member

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    I have never eradicated the aips. They are currently under control.

    Well lets see, since the RSM250 inherited all rocks and organisms from my 40g tank, I'd say the tank is about 5 years old, that is how long I have been battling aips (off and on) on these same rocks. You see, I get lazy and let them multiply and then try to tackle getting rid of them all at once. The peps have never kept them in check. I am currently down to one little pep who does go after them, but only after I apply aiptasiaX. I'm sure the pep goes after the little ones. But, for the large ones, the pep will only attack and tear the aip apart after I apply aiptasiaX. It is very strange behavior. But, the aip is larger then the pep, so I'm sure that is the reason why the pep doesn't attack them.

    You can't tell by looking at the photos, but there is a large space behind all the rocks (almost all my rocks are flat in shape). The large rock in the center is flat and is leaning against the back of the tank, which provides ample space behind that I can't reach and I'm sure allows for aip growth. Although looking back there from the sides of the tank I can't see any aips.

    BTW - It has took me ~2 years of hitting all the lfs in the VA, MD, DC area to gather the flattest rocks I could find.... ;)
     
    #10
  11. Oxylebius

    Oxylebius Well-Known Member

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    I don't dose anything. Not yet. And hope to not have to. Is it possible to reach a plateau of coral growth where I can maintain coral polyp life w/o growth? That is my target.

    I do weekly water changes. About 4 gallon changes weekly. I use one of those standard home depot 5 gallon buckets. Early on I would do water changes based on the calcium and nitrate levels, more often as needed to bring down the nitrate levels. But I haven't had to deal with nitrate issues over the last several months.

    I have to say that several things happened around the same time. I switched to the red sea coral plus around the same time that I took the sponges and ceramic out of the tank. The calcium in the tank rose and the nitrates diminished. I was able to get that turf macroalgae under control and the corals started to grow faster. Oh and I found a light balance where the tank wasn't too blue, too purple, or too yellow. The orange looks orange, the greens look green, and the purples and pinks look purple and pink - I'm not a fan of blue tanks.

    I think one of my early on issues also had to do with the old rocks seeping nitrates back out into the water. In 2008 I had bought all my rocks from a lfs that was closing, I had the choice of any rocks from any of their tanks. The rocks were old to begin with. Once I switched to a reef tank (from a fish and mobile invert tank) I started to use RODI water and that is when I got that horrible turf algae (but only on the old rocks).
     
    #11
  12. Oxylebius

    Oxylebius Well-Known Member

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    Side view of tank. You can sorta see the space back behind the rocks.

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    #12
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  13. DianaKay

    DianaKay Princess Diana
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    Fantastic thread Oxy! Love that you took and saved pictures from along the way :thumbup:
    Thanks for starting this thread, look forward to more pictures & progress updates...
    tank looks great! :snshne:
     
    #13
  14. Oxylebius

    Oxylebius Well-Known Member

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    Current inhabitants:

    Montipora
    Greensleeves digitata,
    ORA German Blue Polyp Digitata,
    Orange digitata,
    Purple Haze,
    Grape Capricorns,
    Palawanensis

    Stylophora
    ORA Green

    Fish
    2x Black and White Clowns (Amphiprion ocellaris),
    1x Tailspot blenny (Ecsenius stigmatura),
    1x Coral Beauty Angelfish (Centropyge bispinosa)

    Mobile Inverts
    2x Scarlet Skunk Cleaner Shrimp,
    1x Peppermint shrimp,
    1x Blue Tuxedo Urchin,
    1x Sally lightfoot crab,
    1x blue leg hermit,
    1x red leg hermit,
    3x Hawaiian dwarf zebra hermits,
    2x Cerith Snail,
    2x Nerite Snail,
    2x margarita snails,
    4x Nassarius snails,
    2x Mexican turbo snail,

    Many hitchhikers, including:
    collonista snails
    brittle stars,
    orange and white ball sponges, and
    red Pseudocorynactis white-tipped anemones
     
    #14
  15. Oxylebius

    Oxylebius Well-Known Member

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    Tailspot Blenny (Ecsenius stigmatura)

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    #15
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  16. Oxylebius

    Oxylebius Well-Known Member

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    Black and White Clownfish (Amphiprion ocellaris)

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    #16
  17. Oxylebius

    Oxylebius Well-Known Member

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    Cleaner shrimp w/eggs

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    #17
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2013
  18. Oxylebius

    Oxylebius Well-Known Member

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    Mobile Inverts

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    Mr. Potato Head urchin (carrying a monti frag)
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    Mr. Potato Head urchin is always carrying something
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    Sally's mesmerizing eyes
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    Hawaiian dwarf hermit in new shell
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    Hawaiian dwarf hermit same shell covered in coralline algae (coralline algae even covered its eye).
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    #18
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  19. Oxylebius

    Oxylebius Well-Known Member

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    Previous critters

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    Spitting sand
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    #19
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  20. Oxylebius

    Oxylebius Well-Known Member

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    Unfortunately, I killed my 'Mr. Potato Head' urchin. Was using the mag-float, trying to hurry cleaning the glass swiping back and forth real fast and BAM - hit the urchin, who was hanging out under the outflow in the corner. I heard the crack of the test from outside the tank (test: calcium skeleton of urchin). I was hoping that it would heal and survive, no luck, it stopped carrying shell bits, then lost all its spins, now it sits an empty shell at the bottom of the tank behind some rocks. :(

    I'm so angry at myself....

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    The urchin carried that live coral frag around for a good 6 weeks or so, I found that frag one day laying on the sand and glued it on the rocks again... the frag still lives even after being carried all around the tank.
     
    #20
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