We all know by now that rock and (to a lesser extent) sand is the basis of filtration for any reef system. But for many of us, it’s not enough to just throw some stuff in to a tank. We’re addicted to the artform of aquascaping.
I called on the folks over at Nano-Reef.com to show off their aquascapes and we found some beauties. The great part about these nano aquarium aquascapes is that you can simply build them bigger or combine your favorites to build the ‘scape for your larger reef tank.
So without further ado, here’s a list of eleven incredible aquascapes, from rock walls to lagoons and everything in between.
Two Islands and a Trench
Lots of open space and multiple heights for coral placement make this a favorite of many reef addicts. That’s one happy clownfish!
Waters of the Tonga area are known for two things – shelf rock and branches. This scape does an amazing job of recreating the natural look of the Tonga in a shallow reef.
Arches and Towers
I can’t overstate how big of a fan I am of arches. But this aquascape takes things a step further with a huge, vertical reach of two pillars and an arch to combine them. Absolutely beautiful.
Bombora, or bommies, is an Australian term for waves that break over a shallow area of a reef. This minimalist scape does an incredible job of showing off just how beautiful those bommies can be.
Like the islands and trenches scape from above, this build focuses on an expansive sand bed and loads of places for corals to call home. Kudos on the use of the black sand too!
|via Pinner Reef|
This single, massive arch plays in contrast to the trench and island aquascapes that we’ve seen before. Also, the lack of a vertical pillar makes the arch the true centerpiece of the tank.
While it might break everything about the “rule of thirds”, this tri-pillar design is as beautiful as it is functional. Oh, and it doesn’t hurt that it’s absolutely packed with quality corals.
Three Islands (and a Bonsai!)
This unique take on the island idea uses hammer corals and frogspawns to create the coral version of a bonsai tree. Lovely!
The Rock Wall
If you’ve ever had the pleasure of diving around a reef shelf, this will look very familiar to you. Although we don’t normally see corals on the walls in the ocean, this scape gives lots of room to grow corals that need different levels of light.
A Shallow Reef
The beauty of a coral reef is that it’s rarely ever one shape. In this aquascape we see towers, shelves, arches and a lagoon structure, all rolled into one view. An absolutely stunning example, and all hand crafted using dry rock.
I saved this one until the very end because it’s absolutely the most beautiful aquascape I’ve ever seen. I’m a fan of minimalism, and this ultra-minimal lagoon manages to evoke feelings of serenity before any corals are even added to the tank.
Multiple, smaller pieces of rock built up and buried, combine to form what I can only describe as perfection. Well done indeed.