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More Crab

Another fliping non-commensal crab, another Mithrax to be exact. The first one was decidedly a one algae crab. Shame it was coralline and not hair. The new model is much braver (or starved) and has been openly grazing the hair and just about anything else that crosses it’s path. … Read entire article »

Filed under: 600ltr Mixed Reef

Last Tango

Updates on the new additions. Unfortunately the Mexican Turbos, after initially seeming OK, didn’t acclimatise well. The largest one fared the best but the two smaller ones both retreated to the bottom of the tank glass. One was found belly up the next morning. Any snail belly up has no chance against the well named Leopard snails. The other one remained motionless for a few days with a Leopard on the prowl near it. Good news is that today it has been haring around the tank seemingly much better. Hair algae wise they aren’t making much headway. They seem to prefer the cleaner rocks or the back glass. I’ll give them a few more days before manually moving them every night. The Urchins have been much more productive. The original slim shady … Read entire article »

Filed under: 600ltr Mixed Reef

Mexican Turbo Snails

Da da daaa da da da daaa … Progress update…. Possibly lost the runty Pom Pom. Surprising because it had regained its second nem. It might have been a molt but a couple of snails were at it. Algae update: Overall it does seem to be on the wane. The Urchin has continued to selectively ignore the hair algae but has done a fantastic job of adorning itself with the life on my macro algae rock. Annoying as it is you have to marvel at the camouflage job. Even the SAS could learn a trick or two. The Mithrax crab or “Mr Picky” as it is now known has also studiously continued to ignore any of the hair or valonia and has pretty much stripped it’s home base rock of coralline leaving it … Read entire article »

Filed under: 600ltr Mixed Reef

Abalone Out and About

Finally caught the abalone out and about tonight doing the job he is in for – eating algae (yay). Soon made a dash for his cave when the flash went off: So far the Mithrax seems mainly intent on eating the dark red coralline algae but has had nips at a couple of the few remaining pieces of caulerpa. Shown not much interest at all in the hair. The urchin ate a tract through the main piece of hair I placed it in but has since remained fixed on coralline also. Even so the hair patches do seem to be receeding… …also worth a note the Porcelain crab has moved to the opposite end of the tank wedged under a rock so may be about to molt (it rarely moves from it’s favourite spot) … Read entire article »

Filed under: 600ltr Mixed Reef

RIP Sea Hare

RIP Jabba. At least it lived its full cycle of life. You never know I might even see a baby Jabba at some point. Here is an in-tank shot of Kina the Urchin: … Read entire article »

Filed under: 600ltr Mixed Reef

Tuxedo Urchin, Emerald Crab

Jabba is still moving slowly around the same rock. UPDATE: Still reading up and sadly this species of Sea Hare only live for a year until they spawn and usually die two days later. I guess I purchased Jabba just before it was due to spawn. Some piccys of the new inhabitants. A blue tuxedo urchin (Mespilla globulus): for reasons described above. A general maintenance bot that will eat all kinds of algae. I do agree that it is probably better for coralline to be kept under control as well, however nice it looks. …and (heresy!) an emerald mithrax crab (Mithrax sculptus). I really promised I wouldn’t put any non-commensal crabs in the system but prevention is better than cure at this point (I’ve learnt a hard lesson with not nipping the algae … Read entire article »

Filed under: 600ltr Mixed Reef

Hare Today, Gone Tomorrow

Worrying news over the last few days. Since laying its eggs the Sea Hare has been very much less mobile. I haven’t noted it actively grazing either. I have also since read that Aplysia sp. Sea Hares only usually live for a year. Jabba is obviously not an adolescent, it may just be its repeated egg laying was a last hurrah. Still, we will wait and see but I will keep a careful eye on it. Maybe it’s just taking a break after its hot laps around the tank. Yesterday I replaced my rowaphos. The effluent in the reactor was a little dirty but not that smelly. I was glad to give it a good clean out though and replace the filter medium that holds the rowa in suspension. I will do the … Read entire article »

Filed under: 600ltr Mixed Reef

Hare Eggs

Jabba the Sea Hare has laid some eggs: After the first day or so where Jabba found it’s feet (or in this case foot) it has started to graze on several spots of hair algae. It has also munched some macro algae (that in the eggs shots). I’m really surprised at how active a sea hare is. It’s a long way from what I expected and has some quite amusing quirky little habits. It has bounced along the sand bed a few times when confronted with the full flow of the Tunzes but it doesn’t seem bothered and merrily goes for another ride or two before getting bored and heading off in a different direction. It has ventured onto my large flat plate where most of my problem algae exists but the flow … Read entire article »

Filed under: 600ltr Mixed Reef

Hair Algae Still Winning

Still dosing with Purple Up. Things are… well… much more purple… and a banana macro algae (calcerous) has appeared. Calcium levels haven’t budged a very small budgie though. 360ppm. Considering balling. That’s not rude, that’s the calc/mag adding method named after Hans-Werner Balling. Expensive to setup, but hey what isn’t in the reefkeeping hobby. Leopard Wrasse is a happy bunny. Taking frozen mysis twice a day and I have been mixing small amounts of other frozen in. Seems very particular on the mysis though. Live food culturing The rot/pod culture is still bubbling away. There is certainly a “soup” of some kind in there but all the large critters are nowhere to be seen. I suspect I have just rots left or I’m possibly just feeding my tank with more detritus (yay). I need … Read entire article »

Filed under: 600ltr Mixed Reef