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Archive for November, 2009


Tuesday, November 10th, 2009

Red rose bubble tip Anemoneicon. This anemone has red mouth and red oral disc. The tentacles of this anemone stick well and are red. The underside of the oral disc is purplewith a smooth purple column and pedal disc. This bubble tip anemone prefers to attach to piles of rocky rubble and coral rubble, and is maintained under 250-Watt DE-10K bulbs that are suspended 18″ above the water surface in a raceway that is 16″ deep. This anemone is fully quarantined since November and is feeding well on a mix of PE Mysis and finely chopped raw shrimp. The diameter of the pedal disc is 1″ and the anemone is 3-1/2″ in diameter when fully open.
Size: 3-1/2″

Tuesday, November 10th, 2009
reef-illuminations-l

The Reef Illuminations fixtures are the first in a series of all-in-one fixtures from IceCap. The T5 fixtures sport a solid aluminum construction and offer silent operation, as no fan is needed. Each fixture comes with IceCap’s 3 year Warranty. The IceCap T5 Reef Illumination fixtures come with IceCap’s trademarked blue LEDs, the Lunarlites (420 – 460 nm). Each 4′ fixture powers 4 T5 bulbs and 4 Lunarlites strips, each including 75 individual emitters.

IceCap Reef Illuminations series also offers a Metal Halide,T5, LED combo. 4′ fixtures include 2 T5 bulbs, 2 LunarLite Blue LED Tubes, and 2 250W Double Ended Metal Halide bulbs.

These new fixtures from IceCap look great, and offer unmatched versatility and ease of use. There are one power cable dedicated to the Metal Halides, one for the T5’s, and one for the LEDs, allowing for dawn/dusk and moonlight applications for fully customized 24-hour lighting schemes. Cooling is provided by two built-in fans encouraging flow of air and cool operation.

Here is a quick promo from IceCap highlighting some of the features offered by the Reef Illuminations Series.

Sunday, November 8th, 2009

A friend has recently noticed that there were red bugs in his system, so I decided to outline a red bug treatment plan using Interceptor and add it to the Reef Tools knowledge base.

Tegastes acroporanus, commonly known as red bugs or red acro bugs are copepods that prey on Acropora corals. Red bugs are actually primarily yellow, with a bright red “spot”. They are very small and are sometimes difficult to see with the naked eye.

red-bugs
red-bugs-2

Sometimes, you can see tiny bright spots on a coral suspected of being infected by shining a flashlight directly on the exposed branches. I will add another article exclusively dedicated to red bugs, as well as one about treating new corals with Interceptors, but for now, let’s just say that red bugs feed exclusively on on Acropora corals, and are sure to create a less-than-optimal environment for corals on which they reside.

Let’s turn the discussion to treating your reef tank for red bugs, using Interceptor. Interceptor is a given to dogs and cats for the prevention of heartworm, hookworm, roundworms, and whipworms. It is important to note that the Interceptor comes in several tablet sizes, and for the purpose of this article, I will be referring to the large tabs (Dogs 51-100lbs and cats 12.1-25lbs).

Here is a photo of the current packaging for Interceptor:

interceptor

And on of a single packaged tablet :

interceptor-2

Red Bug Treatment Basics:
It is commonly agreed on, that a large tablet of Interceptor will adequately treat about 380 – 400 gallon or aquarium water. And although this is sometimes difficult to estimate, do your best, taking into account variables such as your sump, Calcium Reactor, Protein skimmer, refugium, and the amount of rock you have. It has been found that 25mg of Interceptor per 10 gallons of aquarium water is the appropriate dosage for killing red bugs.  Since Interceptor can negatively effect crabs and shrimp, you should remove them from your system for the length of the treatment. Please make sure to remove the air feed to your protein skimmer, so that it continues to run, but does not skim. Please also remove any carbon you have running in the system, and turn off Ozone and UV sterilizers. It is important that EVERY part of your system comes in contact with Interceptor, so if you turn off your GFO and Carbon reactors, please dispose of the water and replace with clean saltwater when turned back on.

Interceptor is known to kill adult red bugs, but it’s effect on the different stages of red bug life is speculative at best. As a result, the outlines treatment should be performed 3 time at a minimum. This will ensure that any adult red bugs remaining after the initial treatment as well as any that were juveniles or at the egg stage, are killed during the second treatment. A third treatment is performed as an insurance policy, as would subsequent treatments. There is some discussion regarding the treatment intervals, with some hobbyists performing 1 week intervals, and others performing the first two treatments a week apart, and the third treatment 2 weeks after that. In addition, some hobbyists wait 6 hours before turning everything back on, and some wait 12 hours. I have experimented and have found them both to be successful.

Red Bug Treatment Routine:
After you’ve read the previous section, and have performed the basic preparatory steps (skimmer on but not producing bubbles, carbon and gfo out, ozone off, uv sterilizer off), crush one large Interceptor pill with a spoon, until it is completely turned to powder. Take a cup of aquarium water, and mix the appropriate amount of crushed Interceptor (25mg per 10 gallons of aquarium water) until it’s disolved. Note, Interceptor is not the most soluble medication, so just keep mixing :). Once the solution is ready, pour it into your tank in a high flow area. Your aquarium should not cloud up, and should remain looking natural throughout the treatment. Once the desired treatment time has lapsed (6-12 hours), add fresh carbon to your reactor, and turn your skimmer, ozone, uv sterilizer, etc back on. You’re done. Repeat this a minimum of 3 times, and your tank should be red bug free!

FAQ
How can I get Interceptor?
Interceptor is prescribed by a Vet. I have a couple of dogs, so obtaining Interceptor has never been an issue. If you do not have a dog, you can try printing this article and taking it with you to a vet’s office, and tell them what you will be using it for. There are also some mail-order companies in Canada that will ship out Interceptor without a prescription.

How can I weigh the correct dosage?
I crushed the tab into a powder, and then walked into a local pharmacy. After a brief discussion, they were more than happy to use their scale and assist me. (I will say that walking into a pharmacy with a strange powder and asking them to weigh it for you, may not work everywhere, and is sure to get you some strange looks, so be prepared).

Why do I still see red bugs in my tank after the treatment?
Red bugs latch only Acropora corals well into the late hours of the treatment, and sometimes for several days following the treatment. Use a turkey baster to get them off of the corals, following the treatment. Rest assure, than any living red bugs will be eradicated with follow up treatments.

DISCLAIMER
Before we begin, let me say that this is just an article based on my research and experience. I am not telling you to perform this routine, nor do I want to get hate mail about it if your tank crashes at some point in the future 🙂

Sunday, November 8th, 2009

One of the most basic aspects of maintaining a reef tank, is performing water changes. In this article we will cover various aspects regarding the importance of water changes, as well as why and how often they should be performed.

Why Should I Do Water Change?
This is a common question amongst beginning reef hobbyists.  The most immediate answer is that water changes facilitate a manual export of nutrients from the water column.  In this particular case, nutrients refers primarily to nitrates, nitrites and phosphates. These will be discussed in much more detail in another article, but let’s highlight for now that these compounds, at high levels, will be detrimental to the health of your reef, as well as promote the growth of nuisance algae. And although we have other methods removing nutrients from our reef systems (protein skimmers, GFO, biological filtration,  etc), many advanced hobbyists agree that these methods should supplement water changes, rather than replace them. In addition to removing nutrients from the water column, water changes provide an opportunity to remove detritus that has settled in areas with insufficient flow, as well as assist in the manual removal of nuisance algae. Lastly, water changes replenish many important trace elements that are used by your reef inhabitants.

How Much Water Should I Change?
We convinced you that you should do water changes, the next question is when, and how much.  Let’s begin by saying that all we can really do is make recommendations. There is no substitute to watching your reef and responding appropriately to it’s needs. There are many elements that contribute to the how much and how often question. If water changes are used to remove nutrients from the water column, then let’s look at variables that increase as well as decrease these compounds in the reef tank. You can begin by looking at your livestock. Biological waste from the animals  in your tank coupled with feeding practices are the main contributors to increased levels of nitrates, nitrites and phosphates. Therefore, as the number of fish increase within a given tank, more food is used to feed them, and in return, more waste is introduced to the tank. We also need to take into account other methods of waste removal such as protein skimming, chemical removal, and biological filtration.

In most reef aquariums, it is recommended that 5-20% of the water volume is changed every month, with smaller, weekly changes preferred over larger monthly ones.  Again, this is only a recommendation, as there may be instances where larger quantities must be changes.

How Should I Do a Water Change?
I can just hear someone saying “ummm….take some water out and then add new water back in….?”. And while, yes, that is in essence what we are doing, let’s look at it in a little more detail. Let’s pretend that we are doing a 10 gallon water change on our tank. Make sure that you pre-mixed 10 gallons of saltwater, and that the Specific Gravity of the new water matches that of your reef tank.  I personally like to let to solution mix for 24 hours before doing a water change. That insures that the salt mix that I use has completely dissolved in the water.

Rather than simply siphoning 10 gallons from the top of the tank or sump, we recommend that you use a hose and try to reach into corners of your tank and sump. Try to get into areas that may not have optimal flow, and where detritus or uneaten food may have settled.  This intentionally targets areas that are likely to cause problems in the long run.  Once you have siphoned out 10 gallons of water, simply pump or pour the new saltwater into your system, and you’re done.

In summery, we recommend that you :

  • pre-mix your new batch of saltwater for at least a 24 hours, and ensure that it is of the same specific gravity as your tank.
  • perform a 5-20% each month, preferrably in smaller, weekly increments
  • make sure that you siphon out dead zones (areas with little flow)

We hope this has been a helpful article, please let us know if you have any questions.

Saturday, November 7th, 2009

peppermint shrimp eating aiptasia

I, more than most know the pain of having a gorgeous tank filled with pesky little mini-anemones a.k.a. AIPTASIA. I still remember the day that I brought my first batch of live rock. I was beyond excited and I chose to ignore the ominous warnings of those “well seasoned” reef veterans that warned of parasitic infestations that rock may hold. I threw the rock right into the tank without a second thought about “curing” or “quarantining” that gorgeous Fiji premium! Within hours I realized my stunning new investment was swimming with life. Awesome, or so one noob would think. I had beautiful mini-anemones and little red sponges all over this rock! I was going to grow them and sell them. WOW, my first rock investment was turning out to be a very fruitful one indeed.

In the heat of that prideful moment I decided to snap some pictures of my perfect little rock community. I wanted the world to know about the opportunities to pre-order my soon-to-be Bubble Tip Anemones and my burnt cayenne hued sponges. Moments later those pictures were shining like stars within the reef community websites I frequented. I was at my peak of my new found reef entrepreneurism. This hi-lighted moment of glee was to be short-lived. I was slammed with numerous responses filled with “LOL”, “LMAO”, and “You’re an idiot”. Apparently my first round of “automatic propagation” was a huge infestation of Aiptasia and Flatworms! What was a boy to do? That’s the question that I am going to help you answer by exploring my journey into pest control failure.

Step One: BLOG BLOG BLOG.
I posted a series of questions on every website that would allow this nooB to join. I was given a ton of absolutely brilliant information. By brilliant, I meant horribly expensive. I explored tons of options, in fact I explored EVERY option offered. Some where temporary fixes and others just made the problem grow at an alarmingly expedited rate. On to the journey.

Step Two: CHEMICAL WARFARE.
I was told to run out immediately and buy Joe’s Juice, Aiptasia X, Kalkwasser (create a paste), Pickling Lime, Vinegar, & many more. In their defense, ALL OF THEM WORKED…ish. I had some pretty heightened expectations every time I applied one of the compounds upon my tentacle terrors. Time after time, they would disintegrate into the deep blue, and time after time, they would return in greater numbers. Hell hath no fiery like an aiptasia scorned! The trick, which I later learned was to zap the aiptasia with the product and follow it up with the vacuuming effect of a syphon. Skip this step and your effort was hopeless.
I knew that this war would not be easily won, so I brought out the big guns. Bleach. I removed ALL of my live rock and I filled a plastic tote with fresh water and a toxic dose of household bleach. I placed the rock in the tote for days and let the process begin. I was so beyond smart, I was borderline genius. How could this outbreak continue without an ounce of uncured rock remaining in the tank? I am far too simple sometimes for my reef’s good. I rinsed the rock and made certain to only return the most pristine pieces. I was so proud of my work. Awe snap, here comes the kicker. Aiptasia live all over! they were hiding away in my filters, in the sand, even tucked up into the power-heads. They were the ultimate hide-n-seek Nemesis. Within days they were back in full force and schooling me in Reef-Pests 101.

Step Three: MOTHER KNOWS BEST, Mother Nature that is.
I was now ready to seek out more natural solutions. I wanted to watch predator vs. prey, the way mother nature had intended. What was the course of action? There are so many aiptasia-snacking fish that I clearly had to choose based on appearance. I chose the Copperband Butterfly Fish, solely based on aesthetics this fish was the dream solution, Beauty vs. the Beasts in my living room. The Copperband is naturally inclined to eat aiptasia, and mine certainly had a voracious appetite. However, they also have a zero tolerance for any water quality fluctuations and are, as I see it… suicidal. Mine was masochist and decided that he had nothing to live for and began the process of slowly starving himself to death. It was a horribly sad process, but a reef lesson none the less. Among the Copperband Butterfly Fish there are many esteemed colleagues of aiptaisa killers such as the Raccoon Butterfly Fish, certain Nudibranchs, and my all time favorite Peppermint Shrimp. I decided to spare the lives of the before mentioned fish and go by way of the peppermint shrimp.
I was told that the peppermint shrimp would have a 50/50 chance of success. I had Eustacia that were greater than a quarter in size and extended two inches. I had some seriously malicious pests on hand. I purchased three peppermint shrimp, at the less than enthused L.F.S. (local fish store) workers dismay. Even after explaining my journey into this matter, they still wanted me to buy more chemicals. I, the eternal optimist decided to bet on luck. The peppermint shrimp were released onto the battlefield at 7:00 p.m. on a Sunday, and by 5:00 p.m. on Tuesday MY REEF WAS AIPTASIA FREE !!! Granted this was a game of chance, but it was a risk I was willing to take. After all of the failed efforts, I chose to take a natural route and found out that this direction was the best fit for my reef-style.

Step Four: LET THE BATTLE BEGIN
I do encourage any readers battling with this jelly-armed nuisance at home in their tanks to do some research. Look into ALL of the above mentioned options, and try to seek five more that I haven’t included. There isn’t a right or wrong approach to managing the pests within your reef, there is only your approach.  I hope that this article was helpful. Good luck and great reefing.
Friday, November 6th, 2009
Tropic Eden’s Aragonite just got better. Now available in packaged “LIVE” 10lb packages.
Aragavive Aragasnow, 10lb Live Sand

Aragavive Miniflakes 10lb Live Sand
Aragavive Reeflakes 10lb Live Sand
Aragavive Rubbly Reef 10lb Live Sand
NEW Larger PhosBan Reactor 550 The PhosBan Reactor 550 is designed with the upflow principle to achieve the most efficient use of PhosBan® or other chemical filter media.

Mag Float Lab’s Freshwater Additives.Extensive list from the makers of Mag-Float Magnets.

The H2O Frozen Line has become so popular we have expanded our selection. We now have 2-3 times more selection. My personal favorite is the Marine Fusion.
New Sybon Salt!
50 Gallon Mix Intro Special!
Only $10.79
Limited Time Only~Get your bag today!

Super Charge your Maxijet’s
Increase your Maxijet’s
flow to 1300-2100GPH
with this kit!!

Now 20% Off!*

Don’t forget the SureGrip Magnets to secure your Maxijet Pumps! *expires Nov 23rd.
Icecap Reef Illumination Hoods now in stock!
48″ MH/T5 Combo Hood: Only $999.99!
48″ 4x54w T5 Hood: Only $649.99!
NEW & IMPROVED Trigger System Sumps
Check out the quality and craftsmanship
in these
Crystal and Ruby sumps!
Dura Threaded Unions, sizes from 1/2 to 2″Not very exciting until you have to disconnect your plumbing.
CaribSea Live Sand now available in 10lb sizes.
NP Biopellets Solid Vodka Dosing Pellets. Due in from Germany Nov 15th.
O.S.I. line is back. Full line of marine and freshwater flakes, pellets, algae tabs, nibblers and brine shrimp eggs. Check out entire line, click HERE.

CLEARANCE SALE

Solar 1000 LW Controller / Dimmer. Brand New. Was special order that customer cancelled. Selling way below COST.

CLEARANCE SALE
Hydor Thermopumps. Excellent for nano tanks. You basically get a water pump and heater all-in-one. Places still sell these for 80-90 bucks each. Our price 29.95
EKIP 200  50W 90 GPH
EKIP 300  100W 125 GPH

CLEARANCE SALE

Resun WM-015 Wave Pump only $8.99. We have WAY too many. Selling them DIRT CHEAP, must go.

CLEARANCE SALE

Resun 15000 Controllable Wave Pump only $59.99. We have WAY too many. Selling them DIRT CHEAP, must go.

Friday, November 6th, 2009

my-fishes-dsps-reef-tank

Venturing into this intense, yet gratifying hobby can leave one feeling overwhelmed by their lack of knowledge and with a bit of a salty taste in their mouth. This is an introductory guide aimed at breaking down the initial steps needed to start your first reef. Beyond reading this limited introduction, you are going to need to research specific brands and suppliers to find the right equipment for your needs at the right price. I encourage you to post any questions about specific products or techniques on this site. With a hobby-specific site such as this you will have plenty of support and opinions to utilize.

You have most likely already selected your aquarium, if not, no worries because you will need to build your components around that specific tank. So remember, size does matter! In this case, bigger isn’t always better! Look into your own personal goals and preferences to find out what you really need out of your 1st tank.

WATER
Your water is the single most important factor of the tank. Without quality water you will begin this process with a ton of headaches. Listen wisely to the following statement: SET UP YOUR TANK USING RO/DI WATER. How you get this water is up to you. There are several options including buying your own RO/DI Filtration Unit, Purchasing it at your LFS (Local Fish Store), or buying it online. RO/DI water is pure enough to eliminate many of the chemical/element related issues a new tank is ridden with. I promise it is worth the investment. Once you have selected the RO/DI source that is right for you, a testing is in order. An electronic TDS (total dissolved solid) meter will let you check the quality of the RO/DI. If you do not have this piece of equipment don’t panic, a trusted Saltwater Specialty Store will not sell you bad water. Also keep extra water on hand to top off the tank. The water that is evaporated is salt free and you should replace it with salt free water.

SALT
You have already selected your water and unless you have selected a pre-mixed saltwater you are going to need to buy salt. Not all salt mixes are created equal. You need to select a salt that is from a “reputable” company. Look for a Nitrate and Phosphate free salt mix that is also correctly filled with the essential trace elements needed for reef sustainability. If using RO/DI water there will not be a need for an additional de-chlorinator. You will want to pre-mix your saltwater prior to adding it to your aquarium. You will also need a device to test the salinity. There are three types of testers in which you can use.

1) A temperature correcting refractometer (most accurate)

2) A float type hydrometer with temperature correction chart

3) A swing arm hydrometer (least expensive and accurate)

Depending on your reefs needs, you will want to choose a salinity that works for you (also find out what your fish provider keeps their tanks at). I recommend keeping your salinity between 1.023 and 1.025. This is merely my opinion and there will be times when different levels are need to accomplish different things. Do your homework and research your type of tank. Fish Only with Live Rock (FOWLR) tanks and Reef tanks have different salinity needs.

WOW we just broke off the tip of the water iceberg, but do to the wealth of knowledgeable friends on this site you can ask tons of questions and get great answers. The water is truly the most fundamental, yet exhausting part of this hobby. The rest will be a breeze.

TEST KITS
You will want to test the water to ensure a safe place for your fish. There are hundreds of tests available, but to start off you only need a few. I always recommend using higher quality tests vs. the cheaper in-the-short-run alternatives. You will understand why after your first nitrate caused tank crash. You will initially want to test for the following:

1. Nitrates
2. Nitrites
3. Ammonia
4. Phosphates
5. Calcium
6. Alkalinity
7. PH

Once you are seasoned reefer you will be able to spot issues and test accordingly. I will say that regular water changes can really go a long way and prevent a ton of casualties. Test away! These tests are not all needed for FOWLR tanks, so purchase only what you will need and save some green. Do your homework and find out what other people with similar set ups are testing for and with.

LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION

You now know what tank and stand you are going with, so now is the time to select it’s location in the home. This is a very important decision and one that should not be taken with a grain of salt…get it? Anyway, if you are going with a large tank, consider the strength of the floor underneath it. There is nothing as exciting as structural damage to the home when that gorgeous reef of yours come crashing down. Be smart about that. Also make sure that the location is supplied with an adequate amount of electrical access. You will have several items that need to be plugged in at the same time. You should avoid placing the tank next to a window that gets a fair amount of direct sunlight, due to some unpredictable light-based conditions that may occur. Avoid placing your tank near a heat source, such as a heater vent to prevent any temperature instability. The choice is yours, but choose wisely. It is rather hard to moved a fully stocked tank across the room or up a flight of stairs.

FILTRATION
Keeping your water pristine is the ultimate key to having a controlled tank. The level of cleanliness within the water has a huge direct effect on the longevity of the livestock. In addition to having several forms of natural filtration (i.e. Clean Up Crews, Chaeto, Dentrifiers), you will most likely want a Protein Skimmer. The protein skimmer removes the impurities and proteins (which create ammonia and such) and makes your life much easier. Not all tanks use a protein skimmer, but the more advanced reefers would recommend it to eliminate unneeded harmful waste. This category is far too broad to really dive into on here, so once again ask as many questions as you can. There are people who have been in the same shoes you are now in and that are just dying to share their experiences with you.

LIGHTING
Your lights are a very important part of the saltwater ecosystem. The lights will be mimicking the sun and moon, providing you with the best hues for viewing your corals, and keeping all of your aquatic life healthy. There are so many options in lighting, so be certain to read up on the fixtures and their heat/light outputs (a chiller may be in order), the bulbs and their spectrum of color, and the different functions that each lighting company may offer. It is important to be an educated buyer when it comes to lighting. Lighting is on the more expensive side of this hobby and poor light quality will only cause issues down the road.

SUBSTRATE and ROCK
Once you have established the plan of action for setting up your aquarium you will want to select a substrate (sand, bare bottom, or crushed coral). Sand is ideal in aesthetic appearance, but might be problematic for your goals, bare bottom is great for many tanks, but lacks in visual appeal, crushed coral is inexpensive, but is known for harboring nitrates and other harmful toxins within its pockets. Choosing the correct substrate for your needs will be a tough decision. I advise you to check out lots of photo galleries of members tanks and see what they have done. This should give you an idea on what is the preferred matter in this. Your substrate will be filled with living organisms that help keep the ecosystem within in balance. It is a unique and undervalued factor in the reef.

Live Rock is a fundamental safety net for the saltwater aquarium. Within the porous cavities of the rock live many beneficial creatures that will scavenge the reef searching for food. These little scavengers will help remove detritus (non living organic matter or fish crap) keeping you tank safe. There will be more information of the importance of live rock and substrate in the CYCLING YOUR TANK section on this site. Your live rock also needs to meet your visual demands. It is so important to select a rock that is pleasing to your eye. Browse online or visit a few stores to see what they have to offer you. HELPFUL TIP: Dry rock costs less to ship than live rock and will eventually become live with very little work on your end.

OTHER ESSENTIAL EQUIPMENT
Powerheads (create movement in the water)
Thermometer (accurately keep you within the safe ranges for your tank)
Safe Temperature Ranges FOWLER 75-78◦F REEFS 78-82◦F
Heater(s) (choose the correct size of heater for the total number of gallons of water)

There is so much more information that a NooB should have, but this guide should serve as a very basic introduction into your new endeavor. My strongest piece of advice is to ask as many questions as you can. Do not be intimidated by the web of reef lingo that is tossed around between the seasoned reefers. They will all gladly guide you through this process. I know that I was beyond clueless when I jumped into this hobby and I failed as an advocate for myself, so don’t follow in my footsteps, ASK QUESTIONS. Good luck and great reefing.

Tuesday, November 3rd, 2009
mbi logo250

November 1st is the official kick off of the MASM Breeding Initiative.  We gave you some basic information regarding the Initiative not to long ago via emails and on many of the popular forums with a note that there would be more to come. As promised I come to you with all the details now.

Purpose
1. To encourage spawning of marine ornamental fish and invertebrates.
2. To share knowledge of captive breeding techniques.
3. To enable more people to participate in captive breeding.
4. To recognize outstanding achievement in the captive breeding of marine ornamental fish and invertebrates.
5. To create a pool of information for hobbyists and professionals to use in breeding of established and untried species.
6. To encourage the reduction in reliance on wild caught animals for the marine aquarium hobby by substituting tank raised specimens for wild caught specimens wherever possible.

TimeThe first Initiative will run from November 1st 2009 till December 31th 2010 EligibilityThe MASM Breeding Initiative is open to anyone interested in captive breeding.  MASM membership is not a requirement although creating a breeding log on the MASM forum is a requirement. This Initiative applies only to propagation via sexual reproduction. Specimens propagated via asexual means such as fragging or spliting are not included in the MBI.  General Species will be divided into classes based on difficulty.

Classes are grouped generally as follows:
Class A-Easiest species to breed in captivity
Class B-More difficult Species but still regularly bred in captivity
Class C-Species considered very difficult to breed in captivity
Class D-Species never or hardly ever successfully bred in captivity

You can find a complete list of all currently classified species at:
http://www.masm.org/mforums/tm.aspx?m=31776

Points will be awarded as follows:
Points will be awarded at 4 stages during the breeding process; spawning event, hatching event, metamorphosis, and 60 days post-metamorphosis (or 60 days after birth if live bearing species).
Class A: 60pts
Class B: 120pts
Class C: 300pts
Class D: 700pts

Points will only be awarded once per species.  In other words, you don’t have to start from scratch every time a pair spawns, but you only get points for that species spawning, hatching, etc. once.
You can see more information on the points system at:
http://www.masm.org/mforums/tm.aspx?m=31775

Breeder Levels The following is a list of the breeder levels and awards:
Apprentice
Fledgling Breeder
Novice Breeder
Journeyman Breeder
Established Breeder
Progressive Breeder
Advanced Breeder
Expert Breeder
Master Breeder
Grand Master

More details on breeder awards and award levels can be found at:
http://www.masm.org/mforums/tm.aspx?m=31774

All participants must start a Breeder’s Log on the MASM Breeding Journals forum and post updates and pictures during the program for each species that they are working with.  The Breeder’s Journal Forum can be found at: https://webmail.alro.com/exchweb/bin/redir.asp?URL=http://www.masm.org/mForums/tt.aspx?forumid=86

Tuesday, November 3rd, 2009

The Fluval M Series Aquarium Heaters feature a reflective look which makes them blend into their surroundings. This may be especially appealing in applications where there is no sump, and the heater is in full view. The Fluval M Series Aquarium Heaters are made in Italy and are put through an extensive series of testing to ensure superior performance. The new temperature dial offers easy handling and adjustment. Fluval M Series Aquarium Heaters can be used in both saltwater and freshwater applications. The M Series Heaters are offered in the range of 50 – 300W.

fluval-m-series-heater
Monday, November 2nd, 2009
dsps-tank-ii

This beautiful 1200 gallon DSPS reef tank from Thailand is just unbelievable. The aquascaping in this tank is very unique, with multiple islands containing shelves and branches. There are about a million Tunze pumps on it, which provide ample flow for the plethora of mature SPS colonies. You have to check out how clean and organized this fish room is (more like a fish suite). This setup has just about anything you can think of, and much more.
If only they had a good skimmer on this setup 😉 (you’ll get it once you watch the video).

dsps-tank-ii-v
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