Category Archives: How To

Moving a Reef Tank, Part 1

Since we are in the midst of summer, we are also in the midst of moving season. Changes in jobs, school and other factors cause more and more of us to move every year. For all of you, who have considered moving your reef tank, always remember that a successful move is a well planned […]

Additives and Trace Elements

As your reef tank ages, functions of some elements and compounds within the system begin to diminish. Major elements like calcium are consumed, as are many of the trace elements like iodine or iron. For this reason, some elements and trace elements need to be added to a reef tank on a regular basis. In […]

Producing Water Movement

Until recently the one aspect of a reef tank that was most often overlooked was water movement. Creating adequate water movement can be one of the least expensive aspects of setting up a reef tank, but it is one of the most important. Proper water movement is important for a number of reasons. First of […]

Protein Skimming

Considering all of the equipment that has come on the market over the past two decades, the only piece of equipment that remains indispensable is the foam fractionator or protein skimmer. Its use has revolutionized the keeping of marine organisms, especially corals and other marine invertebrates. It is called a protein skimmer, due to proteins […]

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 […]