Re: our installation of marine aquarium in Amman, Jordan
I could sell you an all new system along with a maintenance contract?
Actually when I worked in the shops customers used to annoy me with their never ending questions... Always seemed to me that they wanted the highest stocking levels at the cheapest price so of course everything went wrong! For me the biggest challange is creating the perfect self contained ecosystem - if the fish enjoy it as well then thats a bonus!
I was only commenting that during day to day running cosistency and stability are the most important thing. In fact under such conditions fish grow healthy more quickly and their immune system becomes more efficient. If things do go wrong they go wrong quickly because an aquarium is such a tiny contained world. - In such an instance it sensible to use meds in the way they work best.
What we are talking about here is the difference between good general management when things are fine and emergency action when they are not!
Living rock wont make any difference to your situation in the short term. Use a RowaPhos and frequent water changes with good quality salt and RO water and you will see an improvement. Also clean the neck of your skimmer collection cup each day and it will remove more dead algae before it has a chance to breakdown and cloud the water.
Hard corals are in themselves absolutely fine under T5 lighting. The problem is that most are not imported but split and grown from frags under halides and then sold to the trade. - This means they are happier to remain under halides.
roughly 100w of T5 is as effective overall as a 150w halide lamp. I would never reccomend more than 1 actinic light source though. Blue spreads through water so easily 1 is more than sufficient and you are better to spend the cash saved on more white lighting.
For reasons of practicality I perfer T5 and I don't believe that Halides are worth the extra money or running costs for the vast majority of aquarists.
I'm a big fan of skimmers! The bigger the better in my opinion. Many aquarists claim overskimming removes important supplements and trace elements but personally I would rather add these more frequently and remove all the crap as quickly as possible. It's an easier life and the easier you make your tank to look after the more patient you will become at the hobby.
The winning formula is powerful skimming, plenty of flow, lots of live rock and frequent small water changes. One thing overlooked by most reef keepers is water changing frequency. Synthetic salt conatins all sorts of trace chemicals which only remain available for a short time once oxidised. Therefore frequent changes with fresh salt water makes a big difference to invert health and growth.
Finally fitting a spraybar within your rockwork will save you hassle in the long term. Slow flow areas can build up sediment which will rot and eventually turn the local water acidic, when this happens areas of liverock die back and you will struggle to maintain PH. This only happens on very established tanks but it is avoidable with flow in all areas.