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Tuesday, March 23rd, 2010

The New York Times published a story about the potential impact the reefkeeping hobby may have on the Oceans. With an estimated 700,000 saltwater home aquariums in the US alone, a larger draw is being applied to the earth’s marine ecosystems. Some scientists believe that these elevated levels of collection, of corals, fish and invertebrates, are changing the Ocean’s balance. Invertebrates, which we use in our tanks as clean-up crews or for pest-control, serve a similar purpose in nature. Removing them at such high level, some say, can lead to an unstable environment. Marine biologist Andrew Rhyne, of Roger Williams University and the New England Aquarium say that “We may be increasing the catch up to a point where you push something over the edge.”

There are those who disagree with Rhyne and believe that no threat is posed by the hobby. Biologist Jessica McCawley with the Florida fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission said that “These collectors are a special type of fisherman. They’re very concerned about the environment and the sustainability of the fishery. And they came to us and said, ‘Can you put some regulations on us?'”

[via Johnathan Dooley | New York Times]

Monday, March 22nd, 2010

Oyster Vision, the the latest video from Mophologic Studios, features the face of a thorny oyster, Spondylus americanus. This impressive oyster, has eyes lining the rim of it’s mantle. These lines are only identifying changes in light intensity that might alert the oyster to the presence of a potential predator. In the case that such a threat is detected, the thorny oyster will use it’s adductor muscles to snap its shell shut. The shape of this oyster resembles that of a scallop, although being a member of the clam family, it remains attached to the rockscape in the home aquarium.

This reef-safe invert should definitely be quarantined first, if it is to be introduced to a tank, in order to prevent any potential protozoan diseases from being introduced. As with most oysters and clams, the thorny oyster is quite sensitive to changes in water parameters, and therefore, an established system will make an ideal home.

[via Morphologic Studios]

Monday, March 22nd, 2010

SKIMZ Aquatics, is a Singapore-based company dedicated to building advanced marine equipment for both professionals and hobbyists. Founded in 2000, SKIMZ has developed protein skimmers, reactors, overflow boxes, pumps, media, additives, lighting, testing equipment and more.

SKIMZ Aquatics’ current line of Monzter Skimmers currently includes the Skimz Monzter SM110, SM150, SM180 and SM200, SM250 and SM300 models, which range from 250 – 1500 liters (aprox 66 – 400 gallons) of heavily stocked reef systems. But through their blog, they have released a teaser for their new SKIMZ Monzter II, which is set to be revealed at Interzoo 2010.

The new SKIMZ Monzter II is said to be Small but Powerful. More details will follow soon.

[via SKIMZ]

Saturday, March 20th, 2010

Reef Snow by Brightwell Aquatics delivers a combination of carbonate-bound, non-conservative major, minor, and trace elements in aragonite ratios, in addition to marine-derived proteins and lipid in coral tissue ratios. Intended to replicate Marine Snow, Reef Snow includes both organic and inorganic nutrients beneficial to stony corals, zooxanthellate and azooxanthellate soft corals, gorgonians, clams, tube worms, sponges, tunicates, and other suspension-feeding invertebrates for growth of both soft tissue and skeletal material. Brightwell Aquatics recommends using Reef Snow at night, as most corals extend their polyps for feeding purposes.

Reef Snow does not require refrigeration, and should be shaken well before usage. It’s also important to turn off any mechanical filtration, including protein skimmers, for about 10-15 minutes after feeding Reef Snow.

Saturday, March 20th, 2010

Digital Aquatics is reported to have increased their warranty period to 2 years in an announcement published with their ad in the latest edition of CORAL magazine. The two year warranty covers new purchases and applies to the head units and modules. This new warranty policy by Digital Aquatics does not cover any probes or accessories. Naturally, an original sales receipt is needed for the warranty to be valid and honored, so make sure to file it away with your next Digital Aquatics purchase.

Saturday, March 20th, 2010

Santa Monica restaurant accused of selling whale meat, has announced that it is closing it’s doors. The trendy sushi restaurant, was charged with illegally selling Sei whale mean on March 10th, 2010. This violation of the federal Marine Mammal Protection Act, has lead to the announcement below:

After twelve years doing business in Santa Monica, The Hump will be closing its doors effective March 20th, 2010.

The Hump hopes that by closing its doors, it will help bring awareness to the detrimental effect that illegal whaling has on the preservation of our ocean ecosystems and species. Closing the restaurant is a self-imposed punishment on top of the fine that will be meted out by the court. The Owner of The Hump also will be taking additional action to save endangered species.

The Hump promised to make contributions to organizations which are dedicated to the preservations of whales, as well as other endangered species.

Friday, March 19th, 2010

The EcoSmart Driver was first introduced by Reef Tools earlier this month, and we have been answering questions about it since. We figured that a video will answer most basic questions regarding the use of the EcoSmart Driver, and in particular, creating a wave. This video, provided by EcoTech Marine, will walk you step-by-step through how to use Auto Tune to create a wave with the EcoSmart Driver.

Once you watch this video, you’ll see just how easy this upgrade is to use.

[via Marine Depot, EcoTech Marine]

Friday, March 19th, 2010

Zac Wolf, Wikimedia Commons

The Atlantis Hotel in Dubai released a whale shark, following almost a year of criticism from various environmental groups. Atlantis obtained “Sammy” after a fisherman discovered it struggling in shallow waters. According to international standards, the hotel needs a permit in order to keep the wild-caught whale shark. Although the Hotel did not provide any documentation, it claims to have freed the Whale Shark into the Persian Gulf.

The filter-feeding Whale Shark, is currently listed with the Convention on International Trade of Endangered Species, as well as on the International Union for Conservation of Nature. Known as the largest fish on the planet, the Whale Shark can measure at over 41 feet in length, and weigh more than 21 tonnes. Sammy, a juvenile female, is already 13 feet long.

Friday, March 19th, 2010

The Blue Striped Tamarin Wrasse is a beautiful and colorful wrasse. Bright yellow and orange fade into a brilliant blue tail, with fluorescent light blue stripes. This particular looks very healthy, is eating vitamin enriched Hikari Mysis and Spirulina brine, and is reportedly ready to go. This beautiful wrasse, requires a sandy bottom which it will use for sleep, or when it feel threatened.

This Blue Striped Tamarin Wrasse, Anampses femininus, which hails from Australia, has been kept at the LiveAquaria Rhinelander facility for almost a month to ensure it is healthy, and will be available on tonight’s Divers Den.

Friday, March 19th, 2010

The VeggieMag by Two Little Fishies, is a Veggie Clip that uses a powerful neodymium magnet instead of a suction cup. No longer, will you walk by your tank and see your veggie clip on your sandbed, or being dragged around by one of your tangs. The powerful magnet, allows you to position your VeggieMag in any position, without having to put your hands in the tank. Also,since the VeggieMag floats, it won’t get lost between your rockwork.

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