Kessil

Derek's 225g - Magnifica / SPS Reef

what is he doing?
Making a solution of:
  • Bacteria
  • Particulate Food
  • Carbon Source
  • Trace Elements
  • Zeozym
Then fermenting it in a mason jar. Even if you sterilized all your materials, you still have carry over bioburden from any of those components or the surrounding air. A lot of the bacteria added aren't even marine bacteria. Anyone with a micro background has red sirens going off reading what he does.
 
This is my primary concern as well. Allan recommends sterilization, but I'm skeptical that one can really sterilize the process fully with so many ingredients and so much involved. A lot of well-known hobbyists are having some really repeatable results, though - which is pretty rare in this hobby. I listen to a ton of podcasts and consume a lot of reef content, and it's unusual for any "method" or "product" to have such consistent sentiment.

Still - I am hesitant. The tank is doing so well, and I am always reluctant to dump any crap in there. But I also have the inner change demon on the other shoulder telling me to try things. :)
You can't really sterilize with out an autoclave though. You can sanitize or disinfect. Is he doing that with peroxide or bleach?
 
Making a solution of:
  • Bacteria
  • Particulate Food
  • Carbon Source
  • Trace Elements
  • Zeozym
Then fermenting it in a mason jar. Even if you sterilized all your materials, you still have carry over bioburden from any of those components or the surrounding air. A lot of the bacteria added aren't even marine bacteria. Anyone with a micro background has red sirens going off reading what he does.
what kind of bacteria?
 
I watched the latest youtube circuit Allan went on but have no plans of trying myself. I like watching in on others trying new things.

Would an instapot pressure cooker be considered an autoclave? I hear Telegraham recommending that for the sterilization.
 
what kind of bacteria?

He claims that any bacterial product is fine, but a lot of the "probiotic" commercial ones for our hobby have been found to be terrestrial species like lactobacillus or refuse to state what they actually contain. If you look at any of the "healthy" splits of populations from Aquabiomics, there are huge varieties of species that are considered "good" that can up or down regulate other species. Telegraham tested one of his open containers and found human pathogenic bacteria that grew in there (another reason not to culture these without a controlled environment). More recent posts had him using BioDigest since that actually had some Aquabiomics data.

Regardless, it's not hard to feed your tank particulate foods, plankton, etc. without letting them ferment.
 
I watched the latest youtube circuit Allan went on but have no plans of trying myself. I like watching in on others trying new things.

Would an instapot pressure cooker be considered an autoclave? I hear Telegraham recommending that for the sterilization.
If you can get over 121C for >30 minutes at 15 psia for a dry container, then yes. Some autoclave background: https://blink.ucsd.edu/safety/resea... saturated steam under,—usually 30–60 minutes.

But that whole process is moot if you're adding non-sterile items like powdered or liquid foods from non-sterile containers. It's like taking a shower and putting on dirty clothes.
 
Regardless, it's not hard to feed your tank particulate foods, plankton, etc. without letting them ferment.

No, in fact it's quite a bit easier than doing this process here! But I haven't (personally) seen any results from feeding any of that myself, which is why I don't do it (and why I have most of the ingredients for this concoction sitting around already, largely unused). Nor have I ever read about any consistent results or consensus when it comes to feeding bacteria, particulate food, phyto, or anything else really. The majority of what informs our decision-making is unfortunately anecdotal in this hobby.

My *expectation* is that I would try it, not see any meaningful result, and stop...like most everything else. The risk would be the introduction of some cultured super-bacteria that bombs my tank. But, I suppose that risk always exists since nothing else we put into our tanks is sterile or well understood, either.

Still, I think you've talked me out of it. :) I guess I'll just go feed the fish some more...
 
Switching gears to a different project to occupy me - setting up auto water change. I currently do a manual 50g water change every 2-3 weeks, but love the steady influx of trace elements (and reduction in effort) that AWC would provide.

My thinking is to run RODI lines from 2x Versa pumps located at the mixing station in the garage, up through a roof vent, across the roof, down the side of the house, and into the sump via the same hole my now-retired skimmer intake was using.

The SW Versa would be pushing water up about 6ft, horizontally about 12ft, then down about 8ft. The waste water Versa would be pulling it, roughly the same distance. Anyone have experience with AWC? Versas seem like a good option but I'm open to other ideas? My main concern is uneven in/out flows making salinity wonky over time. Any other pitfalls to worry about?
 
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Messed around with the flow some today. As noted earlier, I've been experimenting with a Jebao pump in the corner to make a standing wave. I also also have 2x XF350 gyres in the tank, one on either end. I've included some precise technical drawings to illustrate what I did today. Before:
before.jpg


I decided to remove the XF350 on the overflow side and center the Jebao to get a more efficient wave going. It also eliminates some of the forceful gyre return flow along the bottom on this side, which is where my LPS and softies live:
after.jpg


The wave impacts the entire tank, and the gyre on the right creates additional flow on the mag/SPS side that also gets very chaotic where it hits the jebao pulses. This leaves a relatively calmer area in the "LPS zone" on the left:
flow.jpg



This turned out to work really well - better+stronger wave with less return flow hitting the LPS. One less wire and pump in the tank. So for this entire 6foot, 225G tank I have enough flow to support a mag anemone and a ton of SPS - with just 2 pumps that total about $200! A Jebao SOW20 ($65) and an XF350 ($135). Not too shabby.

Here's a video of the motion the wave produces:
 
This flow post gives poor people like me hopes in owning a 6ft tank some day too doesn’t always have to be a grand for each group of equipment that performs a function in success like what’s in your tank.
 
I got one of those acrylic top-down things for pics. Cranked up the blue lights and put an orange filter on. No other editing - blue lights and top down do a lot!

Walt Disney I received as a mini-colony:
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Some no-name mille i got for $15 at AC grown from a little frag:
IMG_1526 (1).jpg


The fruity pebbles I got at the CFM:
IMG_1527 (1).jpg
 
Tank is really doing well - I keep having to bump up my ESV dosing to keep Alk maintained. Seeing some cyano on the sand, maybe because I spilled about 6 weeks worth of pellets into the tank the other day. I never saw a spike in nutrients so I forgot all about it - but suspect it may have something to do with the bloom?

Seeing some noticeable growth from 2-3 weeks ago on some of the more challenging corals like the walt disney, homewrecker, and so on.

Sink in the garage is getting installed as we speak (very excited about this) and so auto water change is just around the corner as the next project.

Haven't shared parameters in a while:

Alk - 7.1
No3 - 47
Po4 - .21

Some recent FTS under whiter lighting:

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IMG_1562.jpg

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Did you move the carpet?
Yeah - to a new home. It wouldnt stop moving for me, and my tank was getting too dense with coral to keep moving things around to avoid it. It went to a good home and stayed with the paired Clarkii, they look happy together in their new tank!

Can you get a close up of the mag? It looks like its changed color quite a bit!

Hey man, here's a better pic. Thanks again for this anemone, it continues to be my favorite part of the aquarium!

IMG_1588.jpg


Does it look different from when you had it?
 
Yeah - to a new home. It wouldnt stop moving for me, and my tank was getting too dense with coral to keep moving things around to avoid it. It went to a good home and stayed with the paired Clarkii, they look happy together in their new tank!



Hey man, here's a better pic. Thanks again for this anemone, it continues to be my favorite part of the aquarium!

View attachment 56333

Does it look different from when you had it?
oh yea, the light colored part of the tents extends way further down. looks like it is super happy
 
Officially started auto water changes yesterday with my new versa bar:
IMG_1598.jpg


I continue to be a big fan boy of these pumps. They are incredibly precise, even pushing/pulling water to and from the tanks/drains in the garage, which are about 30 feet of RODI tubing away. I plan to use the last 2 spots for Alk/Ca and eventually sell my Dosetronic.

Currently changing 9L per day (about 1% per day), over the course of about 9 hours. This comes out to an effective WC of 20% every 3 weeks, which is exactly what I was doing manually. This method is slightly less water efficient and depends on pump reliability. But it's less work, more stability, and provides a continuous stream of the rapidly-depleted trace elements coming in with the SW.

I think it's worth it, but time will tell. I'm not a fan of the additional complexity but am a huge fan of the additional laziness and advantages for my tank.

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Also got my sink installed! Very happy about this. Drains to sewer for both the RODI system and the AWC. It's also just super nice having a big utility sink for cleaning and rinsing things:
IMG_1594.jpg
 

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