Recent Blog Posts

Managing Phosphate in a Reef Tank

Managing Phosphate in a Reef Tank

It is very important to prevent phosphate from accumulating in a reef tank since high levels will stress out corals and invertebrates and feed the growth of unwanted algae. Corals suffer because high phosphate levels inhibit calcification but some phosphate is...

Using Lanthanum Chloride in a Reef, Too Risky?

Using Lanthanum Chloride in a Reef, Too Risky?

There are a number of ways to control phosphates in a reef tank. A protein skimmer and regular water changes will help to keep phosphates in check as will bio pellets. You can also use macro algae in an algae scrubber, algae reactor or refugium. Another alternative is...

Best Method For Keeping SPS: Ca Reactor or 2-Part?

Best Method For Keeping SPS: Ca Reactor or 2-Part?


It is always good to have options and in reef keeping there are usually many available to run and maintain a reef tank.  For instance, you do have choices when it comes to keeping up with the calcium and alkalinity demands of a reef aquarium, especially one that is SPS dominant.…

Aquascaping With CaribSea Life Rock

Aquascaping With CaribSea Life Rock


Years ago I tried to start a reef tank with dry rock and I had a terrible experience. It was one problem after another, including dinoflagellates, cyanobacteria and a bacterial bloom. I just couldn’t grow SPS like I had done so with live rock and I vowed to never use dry rock again.…

Another Option for an AEFW Dip

Another Option for an AEFW Dip


For many years I used Bayer Advanced Complete Insect Killer as a dip to kill AEFW on SPS frags. Bayer is a garden insecticide and it will not only kill AEFW, but Red Bugs as well. But here is the thing, Bayer is hazardous to humans and, thus, you must be extremely careful when using the product as a dip.…

Dosing Bacteria to an Established Reef Tank – Potential Benefits

Dosing Bacteria to an Established Reef Tank – Potential Benefits

Years ago when I started to keep reef tanks the only bacteria on my radar were nitrifying bacteria. The goal after cycling a tank was to have a healthy population of this good guy bacteria. Nitrifying bacteria provide biological filtration and are responsible for breaking down organic waste in a reef tank.…

Taking Inventory of the Frag Tank

Taking Inventory of the Frag Tank


Growing out SPS to cultivate frags can be both a rewarding as well as a frustrating experience. Most of my farmed Acros have thrived while a few have sputtered. Quit frankly, it is a mystery to me as to why a few have been dormant.…

SPS Deep Dive – Crayola Plana

SPS Deep Dive – Crayola Plana


I am a big fan of tabling Acropora and one classic I dig is the Crayola Plana. This Acropora plana has a cream colored base, purple tips and green polyps. It is a beautiful mix of contrasting colors, worthy of its Crayola Crayon nickname.…

10 Handy Household Items For a Reef Tank

10 Handy Household Items For a Reef Tank


Most of the equipment and supplies used for a reef tank are purchased at a local fish store (LFS) or an online aquarium supply store. But what about shopping at a grocery store or hardware store? Yes, these types of stores stock plenty of handy household items for a reef tank.…

Nothing Good Happens Fast in a Reef Tank

Nothing Good Happens Fast in a Reef Tank

Perhaps you have heard the saying that nothing good happens fast in a reef tank. It is so true. Patience is a key ingredient for success in this hobby, on a number of fronts.

Avoid Instant Gratification

Let’s start by talking about instant gratification.…

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