I'm truly grateful that my reef has been selected as the March Tank of the Month here at Captive Reefs. I never really imagined my tank would be bestowed such an honor. My reef has been running since the early 90's (1993...may be?) and has been drained and moved eight times... including a 9+ hour trip to Haslett, Michigan from the Michigan's Upper Peninsula. Originally it was setup in a 29-gallon tank, and then spent a few years in a 20 high and in 1999 settled into the 50 breeder where it currently resides. Through the years the reef has gone though many ups and downs, from a broken heater, leaking sump and pest infestations to lush soft coral growth and large colorful stony coral colonies. Throughout the life of my reef I've followed a few basic guidelines; let 'em grow (i.e., don't frag until I have to), promote captive breeding (buying and producing) and support local shops and hobbyists.
Display: 36"x18"x18" 50-gallon "Breeder"
Lighting: 3 - 39watt T5HO w/ TEK II reflectors (blue+, aquablue special, blue+)
1 - Current USA PowerBrite LED (white)
Sump/fuge: 20-gallon "Long"
Skimmer: EuroReef ES5-2
Refugium Lighting: DIY 4 watt cold cathode fluorescent
Return pump: Mag18 (partially routed back to fuge section of sump)
1 - Tunze Nanostream 6045
1 - Koralia 2
Heating/cooling: 100 watt Tronic heater and a 3-inch canopy fan
Top Off: Tunze Osmolator w/ a 6 gallon reservoir
My reef is well into its teen years and I see no end in sight. My long-term plans include increasing automation and reducing power consumption and operating costs. I'd also like to have a "reef room" where I can do coral propagation and hopefully breed some marine fish too. But that will be several years from now.
There are a lot of people to thank for where my reef tank is today. First, my reef would not be what it is today without communities like Captive Reefs. So, thanks all of you for sharing your reefing knowledge, experiences and photos as they constantly inspire me. And thank you Jim for all of the time and effort you put in to improving and maintaining this site. I need to thank BeakerBob for taking the beautiful pictures in this post, Carey O'Donnell whose skill and know-how made the stand/canopy build possible, whoever nominated me for TOTM, and of course my LFS Preuss Pets. Lastly I have to thank my wife for her support and patience with my reef tank addiction.
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