Friday, January 30, 2009

Top 10 Fish for your Reef Tank

TGIF!

Many of you are familiar with Keith MacNeil, one of our staff writers.

He pens articles for our email newsletter, contributes to our catalog, answers questions in our knowledge base, Yahoo! Answers and in our forum, writes category blurbs for our store ... you get the idea.

Keith is an experienced hobbyist and a terrific writer. When his passions combine, we always get great stuff.

Keith recently penned a guest post for The Reef Tank, an up-and-coming aquarium blog that features tons of edutaining in-house and guest posts about the hobby.

Mosey on over to
The Reef Tank (now's a good time - lol) to check out Keith's picks for the Top 10 Fish for your Reef Tank.

Mucho aloha to Ava and
The Reef Tank family for allowing us to join the community.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

So Much to Learn About the Oceans From Sand


As a young geophysicist in the 1980s, Rob Holman attended a conference in San Francisco that included a field trip to a beach. Dr. Holman, who grew up inland, in Ottawa, stared at the ocean, assessing the strengths and vectors of the waves and currents. But when he looked around, everyone else was studying the sand.

He realized, he recalled, that “sand is not the same everywhere.” So he started collecting it. “I collected a few samples and put them in jars,” he said. “Then I had so many I built a rack. Then I built three more racks. Then I built four more.”

Today Dr. Holman is best known as a coastal oceanographer at Oregon State University whose computerized photography system, called Argus, has given researchers new ways to observe and measure beaches. But he still collects sand, which he displays on shelves in the corridor outside his office. By now he has almost a thousand samples.
Read More...

SOURCE:
The New York Times

Monday, January 26, 2009

New this Week, 1/26/09


36" 4x39 Watt AquaticLife T5 HO Light Fixture w/ 4 Lunar LEDs
Timer controls T5 HO Fluorescent Lamps and Lunar LEDs independently. Adjustable width Aquarium Frame Mounts support fixture above the aquarium. Gloss finish front side compliments the matte finish on top and ends of the fixture. German-made specially angled reflector maximizes light by directing it into the aquarium. Suspension Ports allow connection to optional cables for various mounting configurations.


72" 8x39 Watt AquaticLife T5 HO Light Fixture w/ 6 Lunar LEDs
Timer controls T5 HO Fluorescent Lamps and Lunar LEDs independe
ntly. Adjustable width Aquarium Frame Mounts support fixture above the aquarium. Gloss finish front side compliments the matte finish on top and ends of the fixture. German-made specially angled reflector maximizes light by directing it into the aquarium. Suspension Ports allow connection to optional cables for various mounting configurations.

36" 4x96 Watt AquaticLife PowerCompact CF Light Fixture w/ 4 Lunar LEDs
Timer controls T5 HO Fluorescent Lamps and Lunar LEDs independently. Adjustable width Aquarium Frame Mounts support fixture above the aquarium. Gloss finish front side compliments the matte finish on top and ends of the fixture. German-m
ade specially angled reflector maximizes light by directing it into the aquarium. Suspension Ports allow connection to optional cables for various mounting configurations.

72" 4x96 Watt AquaticLife PowerCompact CF Light Fixture w/ 6 Lunar LEDs
Timer controls T5 HO Fluorescent Lamps and Lunar LEDs independently. Adjustable width Aquarium Frame Mounts support fixture above the aquarium. Gloss finish front side complim
ents the matte finish on top and ends of the fixture. German-made specially angled reflector maximizes light by directing it into the aquarium. Suspension Ports allow connection to optional cables for various mounting configurations.

Tunze Reef Excel Lab Marine Salt Mix 158 Gallon Bag
Reef Excel laboratory marine salt is the consistent further development of hw sea salt tested for many decades. In its composition, this sea salt is based on the latest international marine biological findings as well as analyses, and contains traces and bio elements in quantities which are identical to those in natu
ral sea water.

Deal of the Week








Expired!

Friday, January 23, 2009

Robotic Sub Installs Deep Sea Webcam

The first deep-sea webcam was successfully installed on the floor of Monterey Bay Wednesday, and Wired Science brought it to you live via Twitter and Flickr.

The Eye-in-the-Sea camera will allow marine biologists Erika Raymond and Edith Widder, pictured, to unobtrusively observe organisms in the deep ocean. In this gallery, you can watch as the system is flawlessly installed in the bay, and within a week, you'll be able to use their camera to peer into the deep. Read More...

SOURCE:
Wired Science

Monday, January 19, 2009

New this Week, 1/19/09


Tunze Silence Recirculation Pump/Powerhead
The TUNZE® Silence recirculation pumps combine the advantages of modern and powerful universal pumps for saltwater and fresh-water aquariums. Very silent operation, rotor with high-performance one-part magnet, with all-ceramic bearing. Very low energy consumption. Motor winding with protective thermostat. Adjustable output. Ergonomic design. Two models available, 634 GPH and 792 GPH.


Tunze Hydrofoamer Silence Pump 9420.040
This pump specifically developed for protein skimmers can be fitted to the Master DOC Skimmer 9420 or 9460 in addition which increases the skimming capacity per Hydrofoamer to suit a tank volume of about 2,000 litres (528 USgal.). TUNZE® Hydrofoamer 9
420.04 can also be used as a standard dispergator on every conventional skimmer of this size on the market.

Lumatek 400W 120V/240V Dual-Voltage Digital Ballast Generator Ready
Brightest Ballast on the Market The Lumatek Ballast is the brightest ballast in the industry. Light meter readings indicate that the Luma
tek ballast is up to 27% brighter than common core and coil magnetic ballasts. The Lumatek is 10-15% brighter than other brands of digital ballast on the market.


Digital Aquatics ReefKeeper Lite Controller - Level 1
Expandable - up to 4 modules (PC4s, SL1s or MLC). pH, ORP, and switch inputs (w/ optional SL1). 16 timers/16 alarms (auidble/visual alarms). Wavemaker, Dual-Stage Temperature Controller,
Moonlight Controller (w/optional MLC), Light Controller and Pump Controller.



Digital Aquatics ReefKeeper Lite Controller - Level 2
Expandable - up to 4 modules (PC4s, SL1s or MLC). pH, ORP, and switch inputs (w/ optional SL1). 16 timers/16 alarms (auidble/vis
ual alarms). Wavemaker, Dual-Stage Temperature Controller, Moonlight Controller (w/optional MLC), Light Controller and Pump Controller. Includes head unit (GC2), 1 x PC4 (4 outlets), 1 x SL1 (pH, ORP, temp, 2 x switch inputs) and 1 x Temp Probe.

Digital Aquatics ReefKeeper Lite Controller - Level 3
Expandable - up to 4 modules (PC4s, SL1s or MLC). pH, ORP, and switch inputs (w/ optional SL1). 16 timers/16 alarms (auidble/visual alarms). Wavemaker, Dual-Stage Temperature Controller, Moonlight Controller (w/optional MLC), Light Controller and Pump Controller. Includes 1 x Head unit (GC2), 2 x PC4
(total of 8 outlets), 1 x SL1 (pH, ORP, temp, 2 x switch inputs), 1 x Temp Probe and 1 x pH Probe Kit.

Deal of the Week







Expired!

Monday, January 12, 2009

New this Week, 1/12/09


DT's Live Marine Copepod 6oz
This subtropical copepod species will develop a thriving population in reef aquariums. They are a small and very nutritious prey item with an adult size of ~ 900 microns that are food for many corals and small fish. Copepods are an excellent scavenger, feeding on phytoplankton and detritus of any kind.




Red Sea MAX 250 Plug & Play Coral Reef System - Black
The MAX 250 has been designed as a highly specified complete 250 liter coral reef aquarium system. Each componen
t has been specifically designed to work as part of the total system, guaranteeing compatibility and performance suited to maintaining even the most delicate stony (sps) corals. Includes 65 Gallon Aquarium w/ Stand & Starter Kit.


Red Sea MAX 250 Plug & Play Coral Reef System - White
The Red Sea Max 250 combines all the technology necessary to grow and maintain a healthy reef. The Max gives aquarists an opportunity to focus on the joy and beauty of the hobby rather than on the component selection and installation. Optimal ligh
ting, filtration, temperature and circulation make reefkeeping easier than ever before and ensures maximum success for aquarists of all levels. Includes 65 Gallon Aquarium w/ Stand & Starter Kit.

Red Sea MAX 250 Plug & Play Coral Reef System - Silver
Features ‘reef spec’ lighting, filtration, skimming and circulation. Cabinet is designed to allow air flow throughout to aid c
hiller efficiency. Also includes 44 lbs Reef Base, 26.4 lbs Coral Pro Salt, Hydrometer, Nitro Bac bio starter, upgraded Marine Lab master test kit with Alkalinity Pro test, Calcium Pro test lab, Magensium test lab, Coral Buff, Calcium & Magnesium Supplements.

SpectraPure MaxPure MPRO-300 Heavy-Duty, Commercial Grade 4-Stage 300GPD RO System
Changing your aquarium water couldn't be easier with this state of the art Reverse Osmosis system. Simply hook this up to your si
nk or garden hose or hook it up under your sink with a shut-off valve and you have the ability to make RO water for your water changes. Aquariums don't do as well with tap water because of all the contaminants and minerals in tap water so using this system will help your tank(s) dramatically.

Deal of the Week








Expired!

Friday, January 09, 2009

No News is Good News: Updating the 54-Gallon Tank

(The happy family: two clowns, orchid dottyback and the flameback angel.)

I hope everyone survived their holiday season and can now starting focusing back on their tanks. Right now I think is the hardest time in keeping a reef tank for me. I am not speaking in regards to economic times or anything along those lines, I am talking about the age of my tank and what I have in the tank.

(Brown "sticks" in the tank. Just waiting for them to color back up as the system matures.)

Why is this you might ask? I am one who loves to build systems (designing the plumbing layout, hooking up the equipment, etc...), stocking the tank and all the other hands on aspects in setting up a tank. But where my tank is right now, it doesn't need my hands in it. The fish are good, the corals are good (small, but I want to leave them space) and things are running smoothly. So mostly all I can do now is add supplements, feed the fish, do water changes (yes I actually enjoy these) and watch my corals grow (I wish they would grow faster so I could start fraggin them, LOL). In otherwords be patient and enjoy the tank.

Patience has always been what I preach to people I speak with when talking about setting up a tank and letting it establish itself, but one I have a very hard time practicing. There has to be something I can tweak on my system, right? Unfortunately for once I actually planned things fairly well and realistically nothing needs tweaking. Well except for the fact that the powerhead that I was using to feed water to my algae turf scrubber (ATS) broke and I am using an underpowered pump that I had laying around, so the screen is not getting fully covered in water (notice the area devoid of algae due to lack of water flow).

Ahhhh...something I can tweak. I need a new pump (just ordered a new Maxi Jet 900), so why not redesign the whole ATS. The way I have it currently set up is not conducive to cleaning or ease of maintenance. So back to the drawing board I went, what can I do to make this system work better. With the limited space both within my sump and under the tank I had come up with something that would fit nicely into a small space.


After a little (ok a lot) of staring at the space under the tank I thought an L shaped sump would be perfect. One side could house the "normal" sump while the other side is used for the ATS. So I drew up some nice plans, did lots of measuring and contacted AquaC to see if they could make me an L-shaped sump. The plan looked flawless and would make my sump so much nicer and easier to work with. Then after a little more staring I wondered if the L-shaped sump would fit through the doors in the stand.

Hmmm...how to try this out? I know, I will make a cardboard cut out of the footprint of the sump and try it out. Boy am I glad I did that. There was no way it would have fit through the doors, I would have had to taken the whole tank down and put it in through the top of the stand. Something I wasn't willing to do. So I emailed AquaC back and let them know I had to go on to plan B.

(Pink milli frag, water is cloudy due to stirring up of sandbed.)

Plan B is I will still use the existing sump and add on a secondary sump (complete the other part of the capital L). The idea is the secondary sump will hold the ATS and will gravity feed water back into the sump. I resent the plans to AquaC and they are in the process of making this for me as I type. I am hoping to have it before the end of the month so I can start messing around with my tank more.

(Cleaner Shrimp just hanging out.)

So until then all I can do is sit back, dose some AquaC Complete to help keep my alkalinity and calcium in line and enjoy the tank. Once the new and improved ATS is up and running my next task will be to find the last fish to put in the mix...the research will begin very soon.

Sharks Attack Submarine




Courtesy of National Geographic by way of MySpace Video

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Bush to Protect Vast New Pacific Tracts

President Bush will designate vast tracts of American-controlled Pacific Ocean islands, reefs, surface waters and sea floor as marine national monuments on Tuesday, limiting fishing, mining, oil exploration or other commercial activity, White House officials said Monday.

The protected zones, including parts of the deep Mariana Trench and a string of largely uninhabited reefs and atolls near the Equator and American Samoa, include a total of 195,280 square miles, an area larger than the states of Washington and Oregon combined.


The islands, atolls, reefs and underwater mountain ranges offer unique habitat to hundreds of rare species of birds and fish. Among them are tropicbirds, boobies, frigate birds, terns, noddies, petrels, shearwaters and albatrosses, according to environmental groups who pushed for the protection. It is also the habitat of the rare Micronesian megapode, a bird that incubates its eggs using subterranean volcanic heat.


The president’s action, which requires no Congressional or other approval, builds on the designation two years ago of the 139,000-square-mile Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument in the northwest Hawaiian Islands under the federal Antiquities Act.
Read More...

Monday, January 05, 2009

New this Week, 1/5/09


24 inch Giesemann NEP-TUNE Pro 1x250W HQI 2x24W T5 Fixture
Boasting a low-slung, gently contoured design, the fixture has a quality powder- coated finish. It incorporates electronic ballasts and digital starters for optimum metal halide lamp control. The digital starter technology has the advantage of being particularly quiet with no startup noise at all, while the built-in electronics system shuts down defective lamps before they can damage the light.






24 inch Giesemann NEP-TUNE Pro 1x250W HQI 2x24W T5 Fixture - Silver
As you would expect, the fixture comes with low-loss, partially
printed UV filters and parabolic, low-glare aluminium reflectors as standard. Among the carefully thought through design features of the NEP-TUNE PRO are ease of lamp replacement, when only one screw needs to be removed, and the ability to adjust the fixture both vertically and horizontally to modify the light output to suit the individual requirements (with optional hanging kit - not included).



Eheim Compact Plus Marine Pump 713 GPH
Circulation pump compact+ with needle wheel for protein skimmer. Completely safe with hermetically sealed motor. High performance ceramics for smooth, quiet running and extremely long life. Suitable for long term use inside or outside water; not self priming. Includes 4 suction feet. Connection on pressure side with G 1 inch; connection on suction side with G inch. Pump output is 211-713
gallons per hour.





14000K Metal Halide Bulb - Phoenix, Mogul Base
This 175W Single Ended Mogul 14000K bulb casts a crisp-white light with a blue tint. Great for bringing out the coloration of fish and corals while providing sufficient intensity for growth. An HQI, Pulse-Start or Electronic ballast is required. This bulb is offered at an excellent price and is a very good choice for reef tanks up to 18" deep.








250 Watt 14000K Metal Halide Bulb - Phoenix, Mogul Base
This 250W Single Ended Mogul 14000K bulb casts a crisp-white light with a blue tint. Great for bringing out the coloration of fish and corals while providing sufficient intensity for growth. An HQI, Pulse-Start or E
lectronic ballast is required. This bulb is offered at an excellent price and is a very good choice for reef tanks up to 18" deep.






Won Brothers 3 Prong Titanium Heating Element 350 Watt Heater
Ideal for saltwater and freshwater applications and carries a limited 1-year warranty. Fully submersible, durable and reliable unit with water-proof construction. Visible temperature indicator; can b
e mounted horizontal or vertical. Includes 6 feet cord. Temperature range: 68° F to 89° F. Precision ±1.8° F (±1° C).






Azoo Neo Light LED
Innovative column shaped AZOO NEO-LIGHT light, sleek design and simple to use. With 24 white/blue LED light bulbs, reliable and long-working life span up to 50,000~100,000 hours. Compact and mini size, space saving without reflector. High performance, engergy-saving, contains no silver and heavy metals, a low-pollutant, environmentally-friendly lighting. Provides penet
rating and concentrated light source, easy to create water current effect on the aquarium water surface.



Azoo Titanium Heater
Adapts the latest electronic heating control technology. Temperature control range 21~33°C , ±1°C Titanium tube body, free from acid or alkaline corrosion, suitable for both salt water and fresh water aquariums. With built in sensor, if the tube accidentally removed from the water, the power will be
cut off automatically. "Heating" and "Power" indicators, easy and safe to use.






Azoo Cooling Fans
Excellent cooling effect with low noise. 10 times the wind power of a normal/common fan. Adjustable direction puts the air where you want it. Lowers t
ank temperature 3-4 degrees.

Deal of the Week






Expired!

Friday, January 02, 2009

Top Selling Aquarium Products for December 2008

Joe's Juice Aiptasia Eliminator

Average Rating


The product zaps those glass anemones, the larger ones actually fell out of their spots on the live rock. Every once in a while a new one appears and I shoot it with the JJ - it is really a great product, I
would recommend it to everyone.


by SHARON MORAN







Maxi-Jet MP 1200 Powerhead

Average Rating


I did get a
maxi 1200 for my 46 bow front aquarium and I have to say I am really happy with the power it has and also the silent motion. All my little critters are very happy and enjoying the current it creates. I will definitely pass the word around of how good the equipment is.

by RAFAEL SUAREZ







Tom Aquatics Aqua Lifter Dosing Pump

Average Rating


Does exactly what it says it can do, and does it for a great price. Virtually silent once filled with water. I use mine with a DIY auto top off syst
em and I'm happy with the results.

by Joe B







AZ-NO3 Nitrate Eliminator

Average Rating


I dosed exactly as the instructions stated. On day 1 the nitrates in our 180 g
allon reef were 10.0 ppm. When tested on day 11, the nitrates had dropped to 0.2 ppm. We tested yesterday (day 17) and the nitrates were undetectable with a Salifert test.

by DFWMAS MO







Marine Depot Aquarium Refractometer

Average Rating


Very easy to use with good instructions. Set zero point with distilled water and screwdriver supplied. Tested reef aquarium and salinity was correct at 35 even
though a swing arm hydrometer indicated 31. Never will go back to hydrometer.

by THOMAS