Category Archives: Advice

Reef Tank Maintenance, Part 1

Setting up a tank and getting it to run successfully is fun and exciting. Maintaining it properly is neither fun nor exciting, but it is crucial to the long-term health and success of the tank and its inhabitants. Unfortunately, the mundane task of maintenance is an often-overlooked aspect of a successful tank. While maintaining a […]

Nitrate and Phosphate Removal and Control

One of the main reasons that reef hobbyists give up their tanks is that they grow tired of constantly battling algae. Eliminating algae completely is quite difficult, but it is very possible to control its growth. This can be done once an understanding of what produces algae is achieved. The two major culprits for the […]

Coral Propagation… It’s not just for Coral Farmers! Part 2

In part one of this article, I offered a simple introduction to endeavors of coral propagation. As marine aquarium hobbyists and reefkeepers, we are reminded of the need to understand how and when to propagate our corals, almost every month or week, as we watch them grow. At minimum, we propagate corals to prune growth […]

Controlling Problem Algae in the Reef Aquarium, Part 1

After being in the hobby for almost 23 years and having kept reef aquaria for most of them, it is still amazing that the most frequently asked question is still how to eliminate problem algae. After trying just about every method for doing this out there really are two simple answers: reduce your bioload and […]

How to Restore a Neglected Tank by Mike Paletta

Due to vacations, other recreational activities and lack of time, our tanks may no longer look their best. When this happens we generally notice that a lot has happened to the tank that needs improving. Algae may be a little thicker, the water may not be as clear and the corals may not be as […]

Lighting a Reef Tank, Part 2

Metal halide lamps are now available in a wide variety of wattages as well as color temperatures. Wattage determines how much light is produced, with higher wattage bulbs producing more total light. However, the amount of light produced is not in a direct 1:1 ratio with the wattage. That is, a 1000-watt bulb does not […]

Ozone and Ozonizers

It has long been recommended that ozone be used in marine tanks for many reasons including its ability to kill many pathogens and make the water crystal clear. Ozone (O3), which is an unstable form of oxygen, acts by oxidizing with (giving up an oxygen molecule to) anything that it comes in contact with. In […]

Reef Tank Lighting

Unlike most other topics in the hobby, lighting remains a very controversial and often misunderstood subject. This is because there are so many good options available to light a reef tank, and how a tank is lit depends not only on its size, but also what is going to be kept in it. It is […]

Reef Tank Water Testing

In order to ascertain how a reef tank is doing it is necessary to do water testing. Unfortunately the testing aspect of maintaining a marine aquarium is often overlooked. This may be due to fear of complicated tests or that a degree in chemistry is necessary in order to do a proper test. Fortunately, testing […]

Aquascaping the Reef Aquarium

The landscape of a reef aquarium is not merely one to engage the senses, although aesthetic function is certainly important to the tank keeper. Aquascaping in reef aquaria is primarily based around the structure of live rock and often sand substrate. In the past, it was suggested that up to 2 pounds of live rock […]