Using the Aquarium Cycle Kit

One of the more fundamental tasks one must undertake when maintaining a saltwater aquarium is controlling the nitrogenous waste cycle. Most critical is the elimination of ammonia and nitrite, which are both highly toxic and can “crash” a tank in very short time. Fortunately, this job is naturally (and quite effectively) handled by various microbes. …

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Tuxedo Urchins for Hair Algae Control

Hair algae is not just one of the common forms of nuisance algae, it is also among the most difficult to eradicate. Indeed, despite the numerous options for biological algae control (i.e. herbivores), few “go after” hair algae. Thankfully, the select group of reliable hair algae eaters includes the beautiful and fascinating tuxedo urchins. The …

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Do I Need a Protein Skimmer?

There are a lot of tough calls in reef aquarium keeping. While the focus of attention should be on creating the healthiest and most natural environment possible for your animals, some thought will (understandably) go into the tank budget. For this reason, hobbyists often question whether or not a particular piece of expensive equipment is …

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Building and Maintaining a Peninsula Tank

Unlike other types of animal enclosures (bird cages, rabbit hutches, etc. ), an aquarium is a piece of exhibitry. Often, the keeper will go through a considerable amount of work and expense to build an attractive aquarium system that showcases not just the aquascape but also the cabinetry. In recent days, any home aquarist can …

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Upgrading to the ULTIMATE Refugium Starter Pack

You might be setting up a brand-new reef tank. Maybe you’re doing some upgrades to an existing aquarium. Either way, you’ll have a lot of individual concerns to address. First and foremost, “Is this system capable of managing a large(r) bioload?” And then, “How will I deal with all of the nitrate that my biofilter …

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Natural Water Quality Management for Non-Photosynthetic Reef Aquaria

There was once a time when zooxanthellate corals (especially SPS corals) were considered impossible to keep in captivity. Then advancements in aquarium lighting technology changed all that. It’s hard to imagine that there so recently was a day when marine aquarists abandoned the possibility of ever keeping Acropora–one of the most abundant genera of stony …

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What Do I Need for a Saltwater Fish Tank?

Whether scouting for your first aquarium, or “graduating” from a freshwater aquarium, there is something about a saltwater aquarium that is mesmerizing. For many lifelong aquarists, that feeling of captivating awe never goes away. Thankfully, the intimidating task of learning how to actually build and maintain a saltwater aquarium system does go away. In fact, …

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3 Saltwater Aquarium Pests

There are a few things that any hobbyist dreads finding in their aquarium. Aquarium pests can appear out of nowhere and can spread like a wildfire. Even with all of the preventative measures that are available, at some point we’ve all had one pest sneak into our tank. It happens to all of us and …

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4 Macroalgae for Beginners

Macroalgae are a great addition to any aquarium. They remove excess nutrients in the water column (such as phosphates and nitrates) and provide shelter for copepods which helps with successfully breeding them in your tank. There are many different types of macroalgae; in this article I will be discussing the best types for beginners. Macroalga …

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Utilizing the Peppermint Shrimp for General Tank Clean-Up

Maintaining a squeaky clean aquarium environment is no easy task. It requires frequent water changes, constantly rinsing mechanical filters, gravel vacuuming, algae wiping, and so on. It also requires a substantial amount of cash; top-quality filters and filter media are not cheap. If we are to be honest, few of us can say that we …

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a Beautiful Scopas Tang

5 Overlooked Algae-Eaters

When it comes to your clean-up crew in your saltwater aquarium, you usually will think of snails, crabs and starfish. However, there are some other cool inverts and fish you can add that can help tremendously with your aquarium algae clean-up. There are so many saltwater fish that eat algae and this is just my …

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Aiptasia Anemones can be a horrible pest

How to Get Rid of Aiptasia

When you’re first starting out your aquarium, you usually will spend all day checking on everything in your tank ensuring everything is still intact. Then, one day you look and you see this translucent looking pink flower… I receive one of two reactions from customers when they first come across Aiptasia anemones. One is panic. …

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Green Bubble Algae

Identifying Saltwater Algaes

Hundreds or even thousands of species of microalgae and photosynthetic bacteria may appear in your aquarium. Before treating any type of algae, it is crucial to properly identify exactly what type of algae you’re dealing with. Luckily, most of them can be easily eradicated if identified properly. We here discuss a few commonly encountered saltwater …

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A healthy Reef is a beautiful thing!

Are Water Changes REALLY Necessary?

We are asked this all the time: “Is it absolutely necessary to perform regular water changes?” Let us waste no time in answering that question: Yes! Yes, water changes are certainly necessary. While some tanks need them more often than others, there’s no denying that regular water exchange improves water quality. And it accomplishes this …

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Corals in a Box of Water: Creating a Natural Reef Tank

We’ve come a long, long way in advancing natural marine aquarium keeping. Those of us who started out in the 80’s with barren “aquascapes” dead coral skeletons and crushed coral bottoms might look back with amazement at how so much has changed so fast. Just recall how many developments have taken place over the last …

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iodate atomic weight

Dosing Iodine in the Reef Aquarium

Reef aquarium hobbyists already have enough on their plates trying to keep levels of minerals such as calcium and magnesium levels up while keeping levels of nutrients like nitrate and phosphate down. That, and obsessing over all those other parameters… And now, all the sudden, everyone is saying we should be “chasing numbers” for iodine …

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UV light Sterilization Icon

Should I Use a UV Sterilizer?

The two most hated things for a saltwater aquarium keeper are fish diseases and “bad” algae. Some hobbyists make an attempt to go all out against these threats by using an ultraviolet sterilizer. At least in some cases, a properly sized and properly installed sterilizer unit can indeed help to reduce the incidence of disease …

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Some snails are great detritus eaters!

A Look at the Detritus Cycle

One of the biggest challenges of keeping a successful reef aquarium, especially over the long term, is maintaining the purity of the main tank’s inner sanctum. We go through great lengths—expense, too—in order to achieve this. Think gravel vacuuming detritus, wringing filthy sponges over your kitchen sink, and so on… Is it necessary? The answer …

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Chaeto in the wild

Chaeto for Major Tank Cleaning

Whether from a lack of experience, or an abundance of neglect, some aquarists allow their reef tanks to reach a state of utter nastiness. Perhaps you’ve been there yourself… Where you once had a gorgeous, natural looking, sparkly clean system, there are now patches of filamentous and film algae, piles of detritus, clouds of suspended …

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