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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Latest FTS (October 12, 2014)


========Original Post Below===================​

Thought I would post photos of my current 5.5g pico reef tank. I've been reefing for around 8 years and one of my former 5.5g pico reefs was Tank of the Month over at nano-reef.com where I usually hang out.

This tank was started in the summer, filtration and circulation is from a AC30 and lighting is from a Coral Compulsion 14W Par30 18k Vibrance Reef bulb on a Staples lamp arm.

Design is two primary islands, one devoted to acans, one mainly zoas with a torch coral 'palm tree' and a small third island which feature a micro-elegance (I have been propagating tank raised elegance for 7 years) and a dendros as well as ricordea.

Any questions feel free to ask away.









I'm currently in the planning stages of a new 8g Reef Islands tank and will post details of that as it comes together.
 

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First off, great looking tank and congrats on the TOTM over at nano-reef. I'm a n00b and a nano enthusiast and a few questions come to mind:

1. What is the longest you've kept a nano tank running?
2. What were your most difficult roadblocks in maintaining your nano tanks and how did you overcome/deal with it?
3. What are your thoughts on fellow hobbyists being negative and discouraging others from doing a nano tank, especially if it's their first?
 

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Thought I would post photos of my current 5.5g pico reef tank. I've been reefing for around 8 years and one of my former 5.5g pico reefs was Tank of the Month over at nano-reef.com .
Hey Sandeep welcome to the GTAA. Glad to have locals hang out here. We'd welcome your comments thoughts experiences in the local context.
 

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I love the scape!!
Is the flow for the tank coming from the AC30 only?
And what do u mean by micro-elegance coral? Does it stay small or something?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 · (Edited)
Thanks for the warm welcome folks.

To answer your questions:

1. The longest I have had a small tank running is my previous 5.5g pico reef that I had running for 4 years. This year I got the small tank itch again so I started this new 5.5g reef and I'm working on setting up a new 8g reef tank as well.

2./3. Smaller tanks are a hell of a lot more difficult and challenging than bigger tanks. This is because the volume of water is so small, the chemical tolerances of the water quality are razor thin. That means you cannot slack off at all in your tank maintenance and have to be mega disciplined.

If I slack off on a few days with my pico, it can be disastrous. Yet I can skip scheduled maintenance on my 50g reef for a couple of weeks or even a month with no big issues.

That is why pico and nano reefs are generally not recommended as a first tank. But if you have done all of your research and are highly disciplined you will be able to do it. Then when you move up to a bigger reef tank you will find it a piece of cake and easy in comparison.

4. Tank flow is only from the AC30 at full flow. That is sufficient and all that is needed for the tank. You only need higher flow if you keep SPS.

5. A 'micro elegance' is a very small elegance coral. I have been fragging my Indo elegance coral for 7 years now (on my 7th generation now). Once in awhile when fragging, a very tiny piece of skeleton with a few tenticles breaks off. Within three to five years these tiny pieces have been able to grow a full disk of tentacles and a mouth and grow from just a few mm to about the size of a loonie. Of course the elegance will continue to grow over time.


6. One general advice I would have is to keep control over feeding of your tank to avoid excess waste matter. I use Kent MicroVert in the pico tank so that there is always nutrients in the water column. Kent contains about 2-3% protein as well as vitamins and amino-acids. Feeding is limited to twice a week maxiumum (fish twice a week, dendros twice a week and corals once a week) with flakes, pellets for the dendros, PE mysis (the highest protien levels of any mysis - check labels when buying) and that killer food Cyclopeeze.

7. Also deep sand beds are not feasible in small tanks in terms of their biological action. As such try to keep the amount of sand/gravel/argonite in you tank to the bare minimum just to cover your tank bottom. Too much gravel in a tank and you create a mega trap for waste matter. I also stirr up the gravel every week when doing my water changes.
 

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Very nice pico, we all know that keeping small tanks is not that easy.
You might know but in case you don't that blue mushroom eventually is going to take over your tank;).
Keep it up!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Just a couple of elegance tentacles and a sliver of skeleton glued to a rock base. Over time it will develop a mouth and a complete disk of tentacles like its micro-elegance brother behind it which is about 4 years old and the size of a silver dollar, one of the center pieces of this tank.

 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Just finished building my cantilever stand for the tank to match the stand I built for the 8g Reef Islands tank.

This is what the tank base looked like before, pretty ghetto:


This is what the new stand looks like



 

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I only know this because it's about the only thing in my coral tank that is doing well! lol

It's a dendro :) (right?)
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Lighting is provided by a 14 watt Par30 18k Vibrance Reef bulb by Coral Compulsion. Front face and optics of the bulb have been removed to diffuse the light.

Just goes to show you don't have to nuke your tank with mega lights to have a successful reef.
 
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