dputt88's Macro Nano Introduction
I got into reefing when our family bought my dad an aquarium for Christmas back in 2010. I had no idea what a reef tank looked like, I had never seen anyone with one and it had been many years since I had been to a public aquarium. Had it not been for forums my tank would be a disaster. For years my dad had a spot in the living room, tiled with a drain just for his saltwater aquarium. He had just never gotten around to getting the tank. Being a senior in college studying Biology at Wayne State University, I fell in love with saltwater as soon as we were setting it up. The tank I'm referring to is the tank many of you know as my 90 gallon (not actually mine). It was a little later I decided I wanted my own tank, and that is how my macro tank came to be. System
Tank: Marineland 30 gallon cube
Lights: Marineland Aquatic Plant LEDs
Filtration: Fluval C2 &C3 filters
Flow: Koralia Nano 420 GPH and 240 GPH
Skimmer: Aquatic Life Internal Skimmer
Heater: Tetra HT30 Design
This tank was arranged to be able to support a large population of copepods and other small crustaceans. I did this knowing that the inhabitants of this tank would be seahorses and their relatives. Also I wanted it to look interesting so I arranged my rock to have a cave in the front. Basically, the rock work was done my making a pile of rubble and surrounding it with three pieces of attractive lace rock. Maintenance
When I decided to pull the trigger on this tank I really thought it would be easy and affordable keeping macro algae. Needless to say I was very wrong. This tank remains very bare bones, there is no fancy equipment to save you from spending hours upon hours working on you tank. I have to top off manually by letting a 2 liter bottle of RO water drip into the tank. It is also very difficult to keep that perfect level of nutrients to allow your desired macro algae to strive, yet keep nuisance algae at bay.
With no sump all of my equipment is currently HOB
or internal, which can be a pain when you need some extra room while working in the tank. Given the tanks inhabitant's requirement for low flow, the occasional bit of cyanobacteria will pop up, which is easily taken care of with a turkey baster. The one part I really like about this tank is that when I do a water change on my reef tank I use the waste water to perform a water change on this tank. The nutrients from the reef tank are still lower than needed for the macro tank.
As for feeding, I culture tigger pods and feed hundreds upon hundreds of them to the tank daily. Livestock
Fish: 3 Dragon Faced Pipefish of 2 different species, and one Splendid Garden Eel
Coral: None (I had to point that out)
True Plants: Turtle Grass, Mangroves
Dragons Breath Halymenia
Blue Steel Agale
Red Bush Graciliaria
Cactus Caulerpa (Caulerpa cupressoides)
Rose Petal Algae
Botryocladia (Rough Kelp)
Acetabularia (Mermaid's Wine Glass)
Shaving Brush (Pencilus captatus)
Inverts: Feather Duster, Astraea Snails, Margarita Snails, Nassarius snails. Disaster, Setbacks, and Regrets
The biggest setback I have had so far is when one of my favorite algae, Euchuema spinosum, crashed. It died off rather quickly and I was not able to save the tank from the massive amounts of nutrients. It was a big downer because although this alga is difficult to keep it was/is not the most difficult that I own. It did lead to the death of a couple other algae in my tank but the tank is recovering well and I will definitely try Euchuema again. Future Plans
I have big plans for the inhabitants of this tank. It will not be a 30 gal cube for long. I plan on upgrading the size of this tank hopefully within the next year. I will likely move to something around 60 gal and it will definitely remain a cube to continue achieving great laminar flow. I will likely get something that is drilled so I can store the equipment in the sump, although I have a few issues with sumps for these inhabitants that I must work out first.
I have 2 fish on order right now. I'm waiting on the arrival of 2 Janssi pipefish, they are amazing and I really cannot wait. Also I plan on adding a couple more garden eels soon as well, they are a very cool fish and with the success with the first one I'm ready to add more. Closing
These tanks have defined my life in a way; because of them I have directed my attention career wise from medical biology to field biology. I have spent most of my time at school taking courses that are mostly ecology based rather than those more relevant to medicine. Although I am keeping all of my career paths open, it would be the time of my life to continue studying the ecosystems I have come to love. Acknowledgements
Thank you so much to the Captive Reefs community for nominating me for Tank of The Month. Also thanks to my dad for teaching me my whole life about biology and ecology and instilling within me an appreciation of wildlife. Also I have to thank my girlfriend for putting up with me and my ridiculous hobby.
Please follow my build thread
and also check out our 90-gallon reef