250 Build!!!!! HOOOOO!!!

This large clam they I bought kinda goes against every instinct I have. In dealing with large stabilized clams before, SOMETIMES you out them in a new environment, they spawn and spawn and spawn, then die… we will seeee!
Hi All, well of course I got too aggressive and now have a setback.

0 Nitrate 0 Phosphate and High Alk, LOL.

I got alk back to around 7 for a bit and am trying to bring nitrate up by dosing.

Interestingly enough, none of my clams are affected at all, but the SPS frags are hurting
Update, much death!

So remember how we had 0 nutrients then an alk spike, so it took 4 weeks (always 4 weeks) to see the real damage.

I didn't have too much SPS, but the ones I did perished.

All soft coral was not affected.

I have a good buddy who decided to send me a bunch of tridanca, he's a real sweetheart!


(5) 3-4" maxima- ALL DEAD
(2) 1" crocea - not affected
2 5" derasa - not affected
(1) 3" derasa - not affected
(2) 5" gigas - not affected
(1) 8" squamosa - not affected

I plan to way another month before adding any more SPS
boy oh boy was i not ready for a dry rock cycle. considering ive only seeded aquariums with live rock (from the ocean) this was terrible. It has been one year and the tank is finally capable of sustaining hard coral. I'll never do a dry rock cycle again!IMG_3512.jpg
Hi All, I reckon it's time for an update to serge some life back on this thread.

Looks like I posted about 6 months ago. A lot of weird stuff in 6-months.

Tank was doing fine, but I was having trouble keeping hard coral. I'm not a collector, I just like corals that look good under full spectrum. I'm also not a very meticulous reef keeper (straight Berlin method and 2 part dosing), but I never had any trouble with SPS in the past. From my adventures over the past 6-months, its all about bacteria. That live Tonga kush I used to move around on the past 2 tanks was the secret ingredient to success, I have no doubt. Unfortunately, upon my last move I let the Tonga kush dry out. Anyway, I decided to take out about have of the man-made stuff I started the tank with (leaving in the dried out Tonga kush) and swap it out for the real deal. Well as all of you know, the real deal is hard to find and also expensive. I'm not interesting in the non-porous stuff coming from tampa bay, and I'm equally not interested in the purple concrete Walt Smith is slinging again. I have a few connections from back home, one of which got me a really good deal on some Aussie branch. I bought a good bit of it and had a real nostalgia moment upon opening up the box. I really should have taken a picture when I opening the box, but I forgot. Sorry! Here is a picture of the rock ammonia cycling. This is at the end of about a 7 day cycle with tank water. Rock is clean and ready to go in the tank and sump.


What happened next was pretty interesting.

After adding the new rock, my Nitrates and Phosphates bottomed out as the Aussie rock began to soak it up like sponge. To be expected, dinos decided to join the party due to the low nutrients. I began to dose nitrate and phosphate to bring the nutrient balance back. I also raised the temp of my tank to about 82 degrees as I have had success with this in the past. Dinos remained. I continued to dose and began blowing the rocks off with a powerhead and vacuuming the sand bed whenever i had time. Dinos remained for 4 weeks like this. My nutrients got high stable and dinos still remained. Hmm. On a lark I decided to turn off my heater, the tank settled down to the normal 77-78 degrees. At this time I also noticed that my salinity was a little elevated due to how lazy I am when mixing salt. Did a 5 gallon water change with straight RO. Lights out for the day. Next morning all dinos vanished. At this point, the aussie rock has been in the tank for about 5 weeks.

At the 2 month mark (since adding the Aussie branch) I start to notice sps coral growth, coloration, and polyp extension. Now understand this, I know this hobby pretty well. I just did a lot of things in a short period of time. Any one of those things could have resulted in this success. BUT I still think that ocean live rock is magic, and I think that anyone who starts a new tank should bite the bullet and import some (if only a portion of your total rock).

Below is a photo from today. At this point I plan to keep my hands out of the tank as much as possible and just let everything grow. I'll post an update here in about 3 months.


Below is a video of my Gigas clam. I was happy to be able to have another Gigas. I left a big one back west when we moved. Excited to let this guys get massive.