I'm converting an Aquaone Aquastyle 510 into a reef. The wife wants me to keep the hood on it (plus i also have plans to use the trickle-filter in the hood as a copepod factory so that i can keep a happy scooter blenny).... Its a 70ish litre tank. I have some experience with keeping a successful, smaller nanos under power compact lighting but i want to try something different, in the closed hood. I also love the shape of this tank, i think it'll sell a small reef nicely.
So, i have been thinking that LED's might be the way forward. I only want to keep soft coral and the odd LPS, definitely not SPS.
I am going to keep the stock PL 11W tubes but change them to actinics. Then i was thinking of adding two Aquawave K2 Marine White strips, as has been reccomended as the minimum for a reef by the retailer (who i have to say have been great).
I was just wondering what peoples thoughts were, and if anyone had any experience with these lights.
Right, now then, here's a poser for you that's more for my curiosity really, cause I've NEVER heard of this before - i recently popped a new cleaner shrimp into my nano. He happily pootled round for a bit, meeting the other residents.....including my little boxing crab (Lybia tesselata).......who grabbed him....and spent the next few hours eating him!!!!!! I have NEVER heard of a boxing crab doing this before. To prove I'm not insane here's a picture taken when i could get my macro lens close to his cave.......
Has anyone ever heard of boxing crabs doing this before??
You ca get around the heat issue with carefull planning of your lights - i have put extra lights in the hood of my nano and in teh summer conteracted heat issues by having the lights on from evening to middle of the night! Bit odd but this is the coolest part of the day (or you could have light on overnight but i wanted to still enjoy the display)
water changes are essential! They will remove unwanted chemicals and serve as a top-up to your mineral levels. They become more essential the smaller the system - and the smaller the system the more care has to be taken with these changes. They replace the trace elements in the system. These CAN be artifically added, but nothing is so reliable as water changes for topping them up. The berlin method (i use this myself) is primarily concerned with the replication of the natural in the unatural (i.e. the tank) - essentially based around the bacterial colonies within live rock being 'forced' to utalise organic compounds as these colonies are in anaerobic areas. Even the ocean has water changes. There called currents.
Thought you might like a picture of what i was talking about with the larval stage of a mollusc, this might hwlp show them up better as little planktonic creatures that metamorphose into adult clams/oysters/scallops. One of these prob survived in a pocket of trapped water in the live rock during shipment (from pet shop-> home or collection-> shop), was released from this pocket when the rock was introduced into the tank and then developed as it would normally! Anyway i'll put the picture in the marine photo gallery. This one is actually an oyster larvae but looks very similar to scallop larva. Fishkeeping gallery
Sounds like a reasonable plan. Brackish tolerent fish are used to certain fluctuations in salinity so you should be able to get away with a short aclimation. Watch the fish as carefully as you can, especially the first couple of times you do this to monitor for any signs of undue stress. Perhaps you could try this with some of them and not with others to see if there is any difference?