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by Robert (Bob) Fenner

Re: Golden Puffer behaving oddly      10/23/19
Hi there,
<Hi William>
I’ve taken stock of what I can use and it looks like a QT tank is unavailable. Can I add Epsom salt directly to the display tank with the puffer at 1 teaspoon per 5 gal of water, or is that inadvisable?
<Yes, you can add it directly to the DT>
All the best,
William Lei
<Regards. Wil.>
Re: Golden Puffer behaving oddly      10/23/19

Hi there,
Is the dosing for Epsom salt the same for DT as the QT (1 teaspoon per 5 gallon water)?
All the best,
William Lei
<Yes William, the same dose applies as well for the DT. Wil.>
Re: Golden Puffer behaving oddly      10/23/19

Apologies for so many questions, but do I need to turn off the protein skimmer when dosing with Epsom salt?
<Don't worry William, we are glad to help. The skimmer won't affect, you can leave it on.>
All the best,
William Lei
<Cheers. Wil.>
Re: Golden Puffer behaving oddly      10/23/19

Apologies for so many questions, but do I need to turn off the protein skimmer when dosing with Epsom salt?
<Nope. DO search, read Neale's pc. on MgSO4 on WWM. Bob Fenner>
All the best,
William Lei

My Frag Tank      10/23/19
Hello I’m looking for help with my frag tank setup and the problems I am having with it. I have enclosed pictures
<Mmm; no pix attached>
and all the information that I can and hopefully someone will be able to steer me in the right direction because right I now I feel like I’m lost. I plumbed the Frag Display 32”x16”x6” with my old fuge and sump with protein skimmer. As you can see I have the display draining into the fuge witch has 14 gallons that overflows into the sump with the protein skimmer The Return is 312gph out of the pump maybe 250 gph at the display. I will be hooking a flow sensor up to it from my apex. I also have a Aqua Gadget Wavelink running on the end away from the return. Water tests this morning SG 1.026,ALK 8 ppm, Phosphate o ppm,
<... Need HPO4... not zip. READ on WWM re.>
Nitrate 4 ppm, Calcium 430 ppm, Magnesium 1400 ppm. I believe I have the nitrate parameter pretty good as far as being stable using NeoNitro By Brightwell Aquatics But I cannot seem to get phosphate right. Right now I have I believe a bubble algae problem that needs to be taken care of but how?
<... is the system stable? Have you got an RDP arrangement, culturing macroalgae in the refugium? A DSB there? I'd rely on that and physical removal of the bubble algae for now>
Am I thinking wrong that I can’t do a large enough water change to alleviate or solve the problem because most of the water is in the Refugium and I don’t want to remove that because it’s loaded with copepods for my pipefish and that’s all he eats. I tried to set this up like you would do for the Triton Method because that is the way I am setting up my main Display. This setup and will lead into my new 80 gallon rimless peninsula style set up for my main aquarium. For the set up on the frag tank I have tried to simulate that writing method then I will be running on my main aquarium setup I'm enclosing a Google photo album to show where I am at with my new tank and my frag tank and sump. Thank You Phil Https://photos.app.goo.gl/sdMWCP988F5aJsXGA https://photos.app.goo.gl/rqjzkWU8R4p3vc969 
<Nah, this doesn't work either. Please run your messages through grammar, spelling ahead of sending. This was almost auto-rejected. Bob Fenner>
Re: My Frag Tank      10/23/19

I don’t understand this is a normal email if not please let me know what’s wrong.
Phil H
<? Normal? IF too much non-English (poor grammar...), our filters exclude... send to Trash. BobF>
Re: My Frag Tank      10/23/19

Excuse me I thought I could get help sorry I bothered you
<Not/ever a bother; (but) we ask (see "how to write us, where you found... how to write us), that folks write in "proper" English so that the search tool can/will work for all. B>

Re: Reggie 10 year old Goldfish... deflection      10/23/19
So my question about him sitting on the floor of the tank wasn’t addressed. What do you do?
<Umm, as stated...>
From reading what you said to read about goldfish care it says constipation can be an issue? How would you even know that?
<Not constipation w/ the food you're using>
I am not clear about what I can do to help.
<Please re-read the previous message. BobF>
There has always been a filter in the tank. He has lives so many years in the 12 gallon tank don’t really think he has a problem with this.
Please reply.

re: New rainbow fish won't eat; dis.
Hi again Neale thanks for your reply. Oh yeah the main tank is not where the QT tetra is. The infection is like a dot but slightly fussy I think I dont know if its ich. Kinda doubt it. Could it be neon tetra disease.
<Possibly, though I think some sort of bruise or scratch looks more likely from the photo. If you've medicated as per Finrot and Fungus, and he's not getting any worse, I'd stop treating and simply observe for now.>
I think he's hating it in the QT tank. Could I put him back in main tank?
<Yes, I agree that this would be kinder.>
Should I swab treat with Methylene blue?
<No real point unless it's a fungal infection. Best to just avoid stressing the fish and see what happens. If he's swimming and feeding normally, I'd not do too much beyond that. Cheers, Neale.>

re: New rainbow fish won't eat; bubbles
Hi again Neale, I just got a photo of the bubbles what do you think could be causing it? Is it possible its from Seachem Nourish or Continuum Hufa or continuum C? Or from a plant fertiliser?
<Any/all of these are possibilities. It looks like plain vanilla 'protein' froth, as you see on any well-aerated tank with substantial amounts of organic material in the water column. Doesn't do any harm, and improved filtration, alongside frequent water changes, generally helps. Something to adsorb dissolved organic matter can help, such as carbon, but these can produce problems of their own, not least of which is the fact they're replacing useful biological filtration and will need frequent replacement if they're to remain useful.>
Thanks again
<Cheers, Neale.>

Re: Golden Puffer behaving oddly
Hi there,
I’ve tried feeding the GP small pieces of scallop and shrimp but he’d spit them out after chewing for a bit. Taking into account the fact that it’s not eating, is still lethargic, and has an abdominal bloating, does that mean it’s still constipated? If so, would New Life Spectrum Max help with constipation, or is there something else I should try?
All the best,
William Lei
<Spectrum food is only for enticing eating, but if it still has abdominal bloating, you should quarantine and add Epsom salt (one teaspoon per 5 gallons of water) until digestion is regularized. Hope this helps. Wil.>
Re: Golden Puffer behaving oddly

Hi there,
Do I need to turn off skimmer or filter when dosing Epsom salt? And what will Epsom salt do to water quality?
All the best,
William Lei
<Quarantine tanks do not need a protein skimmer, a hang on back or sponge filter will suffice. Epson salt won’t do anything to water quality, but ammonia and nitrites will rise so, you will need to monitor constantly and do water changes as needed. Wil.>

Re: Saddleback Butterfly diagnosis/ Blue face diagnosis
Follow-Up on Saddleback
Good morning,
Life got in the way and I was called out of town on work for a week and I was unable to separate the saddleback from the display. I finally did so. No other fish are affected, yet.
<This observation leads me to think that the situation is NOT Uronema, not pathogenic at all (otherwise it would have likely spread), but perhaps "just" trauma of some sort>
The lesions on the saddleback have not worsened and the fish is feeding aggressively.
<These too>
I elected to do a formalin dip and observe in quarantine. So far lesions on the saddleback are still present/ maybe improved but fish is eating/ acting well. I think the fish has Lymphocystis already, but I am thinking that the pathogen is not really acting like a Uronema infection/ infestation.
<Ahh, I as well. As usual, I am only comfortable w/ pathogen diagnoses that include microscopic examination>
On another note, ( and from the same system as the saddleback ) over the past month I have noticed a couple of lesions on a blue face angel as pictured.
These are very slow growing. This beautiful fish is fat and acts happy.
The fish was quarantined for 2 months initially dipped in formalin solution > Cupramine x 2 weeks > dewormed with metronidazole / Nitrofurantoin. It was in the same system as the saddleback . Any thoughts, looks like Lymphocystis under the scale.
<Could be "simple stress" here; perhaps viral/Lymphocystis involved. SEE, as in read on WWM re avenues to address (nutrition, improved water quality...) Bob Fenner>
Thank you Jimmy

Reggie 10 year old Goldfish; env. dis.
We have had Reggie for a very long time. He has lived in his 10 gallon tank alone for all this time and has been quite healthy.
<Yikes; even a single goldfish needs more room than this... Likely this fish has been "Bonsai'd", its life foreshortened by long-exposure to its own metabolites. SEE, as in READ on WWM re gf care.>
He has eaten only Spectrum pellets for years now and would normally get maybe 6-7 per day.
<Am a huge fan of the Spectrum line; fed it for years to my fancy goldfish, and to tropicals>
Recently he has been having a hard time getting his pellets. He would always come to the top and we would try to get them as close to his mouth as possible. Sometimes he would even come up and take right from you. Other times they would fall and he would end up searching them out. Lately I would drop in the food always one at a time and he would go for it but keeps missing it. Eventually with much patience would keep trying and he would get. In the past week he would go for the food but go right by it. My son came home from college and said he thinks he got a tumor or something because there appears to be a bulge under his skin near his back.
Hard to really even see it. He thought he was dying but he hasn’t. Was still swimming around until a few days ago when he would try to come up to get food and totally miss it and drop back down to the bottom and stay there.
<Perhaps blind?>
He moves a bit and seems to be breathing but gasping a bit. I decided to do a water change since it had been close to a month and did so.
<... should be done weekly. READ: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/fwsubwebindex/goldfish101art.htm
and the linked files above>
I took out maybe a third or less of the water. I read on the internet to make the water a little warmer so that’s what I did.
<Good technique, percentage>
Now he is really on the bottom and not moving around very much. I took the water to the aquarium store yesterday and she said she thinks I cleaned it too much and the ammonia level is too high
<... any (appreciable, measurable) is too high, toxic>
so she said to scoop out some of the water from the top and add room temperature water and a few drops of the water conditioner as I always do. I also always add aquarium salt but she said not necessary now. Is there anything else I can do?
<A bigger world (at least twenty gallons), more (redundant) filtration, frequent partial water changes (25% weekly)...>
We are going away next week and out of the country to visit our daughter at school for over a week and concerned how someone else will be able to care for him. Even concerned for now! Can you offer any suggestions??
<The reading...>
Thanks Olivia
<Welcome. Bob Fenner>

re: New rainbow fish won't eat... rechatting re FW ich      10/21/19
Hi again thanks Neale. I'm starting to question if it is in fact ich at all.
It looks a bit too large to be but unsure.
<Ick tends to look like salt grains. Velvet more like powdered sugar.
Anything bigger than these is likely dead tissue, whether bacteria-caused or otherwise.>
At the moment the 15 liter is at 32 degrees and has seachem ParaGaurd in it. I also medication soaked the food in metronidazole, Praziquantel and Levamisole.
<That should do the trick! Quite the cocktail.>
The main tank has been treated with Praziquantel because some guppies were doing scratching. 1 guppy has some clear poop. Unsure what to do with that, the food may fix it unsure.
<Good luck, Neale.>
re: New rainbow fish won't eat      10/21/19

Hi again Neale,
Thanks for your reply.
I wasn't sure if it was ich or a small fungal infection since it didn't change in days (maybe a week) and ich should of so I turned temp in QT tank down to 26.
<Fungal infections typically look like cotton wool. They are very distinctive. 'Mouth Fungus', which is a bacterial infection also known as Columnaris, is different. It forms dead white patches, often on the face,
but also on the gills, and the sick fish will quickly become lethargic and lose weight. Since it isn't a fungus but a bacterial infection, it requires medication as per Finrot.>
I also added blue planet fungus cure in the dose recommended for tetras.
<Fungal infections usually clear up quickly, but do remember that carbon removes medications from the water. Sometimes when medications don't seem to work, it's because the carbon neutralised them.>
I think the bubbles may of been from a supplement I added possibly. Maybe the Hoffa by continuum (fats) or from something else I added. Unsure. Will water change of 30% improve it?
<Water changes rarely a bad idea! But wait 24 hours after dosing the tank with any medicine, otherwise you'll just dilute the medicine.>
Or should I be using something like Purigen or Polyfilter (removes organics)?
<See above re: carbon; any chemical medium is likely to interfere with medication.>
Thanks again
<Cheers, Neale.>

re: New rainbow fish won't eat... chatting re bubbles      10/21/19
Hi again Neale, Recently I've noticed bubbles on the surface of the water of my aquarium. Like bubbles are forming from the normal agitation but not popping that fast.
Do you know what could be causing the bubbles? Thanks
<Persistent bubbles on the surface are usually down to organic material, the "protein" removed by protein skimmers in marine aquaria, or the froth you sometimes see at the seaside. Increasing water flow while ensuring the stock isn't overstocked or under-cleaned should do the trick. In the short
term, paper towel laid on the surface can wick away the oil. Switching the filter off while doing this, so the water is flat, can help, but don't leave the filter off for more than a few minutes at a time. Cheers, Neale.>

Re: Golden Puffer behaving oddly      10/21/19
Hi there,
<Hi William>
Yes, it’s quarantined before placement into the DT. After not eating for almost an entire week, I tried feeding it peas soaked in clam juice last Friday. After eating a few of the peas, it pooped a few minutes later. The following day, it refused to eat the clam-flavored peas so I smashed some peas into an actual clam and it ate that up immediately; once again, it pooped a few minutes later. However, yesterday, it refused to eat any peas or clams; it seems to have caught onto my trickery. Is there anything else you can suggest?
<Well, although peas are used at times as a laxative for fish, it is certainly not their natural food. There’s a special pelletized food for finicky eaters by New Life, called Spectrum Max, if you haven’t try it yet, I suggest doing so, you may also feed your GP fresh shrimp and squid, these meaty food are well accepted by most fish. By the way, how are the angels behaving, are they still harassing the puffer? >
All the best,
William Lei
<Cheers. Wil.>

Re: Stocking shoaling fish     10/20/19
Thanks, Bob. Tap water pH 6.4,
<Oh; may want to raise this up a bit... perhaps 6.8 or so... with simple sodium bicarbonate or commercial product... for the catfish>
temp. 27, KH & GH near 0. Only purchased
driftwood and Amazon Frogbit in tank, Eheim external canister 250.
<Nice! A fave plant and my most favorite brand/make of filters>
So I’ll
add entire shoal of each species one at a time after cycling complete.
<Ah, good. B>

Neolamprologus multifasciatus stopped breeding     10/20/19
Hi crew,
I have 20 gallon hexagon tank with multies colony for about 7-8 years. In the past I bought 6 juveniles and since then they multiplied in my tank. I did not do anything to protect fry but I was able to keep steady population at about 9-10 fish at a time. But for last year they stopped breeding. My guess it’s due to inbreeding. Currently only 5 fish left. They look happy to me but does not look they will ever breed again. Do you think adding few new juvenile will help to resolve the problem?
<Hi Mark. While fish probably don't have a "menopause" as such, it's certainly true that fertility declines with age, especially with fish (like these small cichlids) that have lived much longer in captivity than in the wild. Inbreeding can also cause problems, so if your colony is mostly descended from a single batch of locally bred fish, chances are they were all siblings. Even if farmed, there's still a good chance the original six were related. Either way, after a few generations you can end up with a situation where most offspring came from a single dominant pair within the colony, and all the younger fish are closely related to some degree. So yes, freshening up the gene pool with some newly imported offspring may help, ideally wild-caught specimens. Needless to say, a quick review of the environment is always worth doing. Older tanks suffer from pH and hardness declines than can stress Malawian and Tanganyikan cichlids, even if not actually killing them. High nitrate levels also have a strong negative effect on cichlid fertility, so clearing out organic muck while freshening up the filter media in a canister filter, if used, will do something to offset this. Cheers, Neale.>


Unidentified something?     10/20/19
Hello Bob,
Attached is a better picture that you asked for to see if you can identify what is circled. These are all through my 20 gal. marine tank.
<Likely a red algae species; see here:
and the linked files above. Bob Fenner>

Stocking shoaling fish, FW        10/19/19
A quick question while my 100 litre tank cycles. I am planning to stock with groups of 8-10 of sterbai corydoras, rummy nose tetras, and silver hatchetfish. My question is when stocking a shoaling species, how many can I add to the tank at once?
<Mmm; depends on such factors as what you have placed already, the size of the system, filtration, species being added... >
for instance, can I bring home 8 corries, and introduce four at once, keeping the other four temporarily in a QT, or is it better to buy them at separate times? I know you shouldn’t introduce too many fish at once, but don’t want to stress them by being alone. Also don’t
want to establish pecking orders by having different size/age of fish.
As always, thanks for your help.
<Ahh, for these Corydoras and your 100 liter, I'd add all at once, after the system is cycled. Bob Fenner>

Re: Help Identifying this macroalgae     10/18/19
My nitrates routinely test at 2.5 (Salifert) and my PO4 tested at .043 a couple of days ago (via Hanna checker).
<Good, keep it that way. Wil.>

re: New rainbow fish won't eat... more fish sickness     10/18/19
Hi again Neale!
<Hello again,>
Thanks for your reply.
Good news. So the fish weren't improving and the pet store offered a refund and allowed me to return the 5 sick fish. They also replaced the 4 Otos.
Recently my friend gave my Rummynose back only his rams had bad ich and now the Rummynose has 2 ich spots and mild what looks like fin rot.
<Sounds like his/her tank has some underlying problems, with both Ick and Finrot being opportunistic. But in any case, caught early, both should be easily treated.>
So I caught it and QT it in a 15 liter container with a heater and filter thing. Working on putting temp up to 32 to cure the ich. Is that a good idea?
<It can work, but it isn't my favourite approach. I prefer to include salt (non-iodised cooking salt is fine) at 2 gram per litre. At 28-30 C, this should work nicely. The heat is about speeding up the life cycle, such that the mobile form (which the salt kills) emerge from the fish within a day or two. Additional aeration is usually essential, since warmer water holds less oxygen.>
What should I use to treat the mild fin rot?
<A good antibacterial medication is the default. Antibiotics are ideal, else reputable Finrot medications such as eSHa 2000 or Waterlife Myxazin.
Avoid anything marketed as "mild" or "natural" as these usually include tea-tree oil or some other vaguely antibacterial product that have proven to be unreliable in aquaria.>
Oh also this is a vid of the tank now. You can't rly notice the ich on the 1 fish in this tho. I put Praziquantel in main tank due to some fish scratching. I think they may have gill flukes possibly.
<Looks a lovely tank. Nice to see the Anubias flowering! Cheers, Neale.>

Re: Golden Puffer behaving oddly    10/17/19
Hi there,
<Hi William>
It’s a 100gal saltwater DT with 20gal sump. Since adding the Golden Puffer 3 weeks ago, nitrite remained at zero, nitrate went from 10 ppm to 25 ppm, and ammonia stayed at <0.15 ppm. I’m running an oversized protein skimmer and biopellet reactor in the sump, along with live rock plus various other bio media. I’m also dosing Red Sea NoPox daily.
Its diet consists mainly of Hikari frozen krill (fed 3x per week) plus whatever its tank mates are eating. Within the last week, I’ve also fed it half a silverside (so it’s eaten 1 whole silverside so far).
<Did you quarantine the puffer ahead of placing it in the DT?>
Speaking of tank mates, it’s sharing space with blue tang, juvenile harlequin tusk wrasse, Niger trigger, juvenile queen angel, juvenile Goldflake angel, and juvenile mappa puffer.
<Mmm...a bit overcrowded for a 100 gal and will be more as they get larger.>
The Golden Puffer (GP) is the big boy of the tank and the only fishes that bother it sometimes are the two angels. The angels’ harassment stopped about a week ago because the GP started fighting back against them but ever since the GP became lethargic, the angels resumed their bad behavior against the GP.
<Perhaps your GP is constipated and that, may be the cause of its swollen belly and lethargy, give it a couple of days to see if it digests whatever that may be blocking its intestinal tract, it should resume feeding once it gets hungry again. Do also keep an eye on the two angels to see if aggression diminishes, otherwise you will have to separate them. >
I hope this helps.
All the best,
William Lei
<Please do keep us posted. Wil.>

Re: Eviota Gobies    10/17/19
Thanks!!! That helps a lot!!
<Great, Kathy!>
My group includes one that is showing that longer dorsal fin you speak of, and some darker shading on the ventral fin area. The others three all look the same.
They are super pretty little fish, really surprised more people don’t keep them.
<I am surprised too...these are really neat fish!>
They are much better colored in person than many of the photos I’ve seen of them online.
I’m including some pics I’ve captured of mine in my aquarium.
This last photo isn’t mine but this is similar to the color and dorsal fin length of the one I suspect is the male in my group.
<Thanks for sharing. Wil.>

Help Identifying this macroalgae    10/17/19
<Hi Holly>
I have this macroalgae taking over a couple of rocks in my tank. It's starting to spread to a third rock now as well. It's pretty, but I'm getting concerned it's going to be a nuisance and damage corals.
So far, nothing in the tank eats it (I thought perhaps my emerald crab or Halloween urchin would, but no). The tank is a 32g biocube, so I can't put a Rabbitfish or tang in it. Can you help me identify it and give me ideas on controlling it? It may be Fauchea laciniata, but I'm not sure.
<It appears to be some type of red macro algae, probably Halymeda floridiana; not harmful but needs nitrates to survive, you might want to test for NO3.>
It's very short and individual little leaves are attached by a single point to the rock. I'm including some pictures from when it started and current, First picture is from 9/12 and second picture is from one month later, 10/12.
Interesting observation, so far, it's only growing on the man made Real Reef rock, and not on the natural live rock in the tank (so far anyway).
<It looks it prefers the smooth surface of your "man made rock." If you notice it starts to spread beyond control, you can manually trim it.>
Holly LaClair-Bogedain
<Cheers. Wil>

Eviota Gobies     10/16/19
Couldn’t find much information on this subject anywhere so thought I’d ask the guru’s ;)
I have a small group of 4 Eviota Nigriventris in my 20 cube. Is there any way to tell the difference between the sexes with these guys?
<Gobies like many other marine fish, don't display sexual dimorphism, they start their lives as females and the most dominant becomes a male, in the case of the Red Neon Goby, the most noticeable difference is that adult/mature males have larger dorsal fins, I believe your gobies are still juveniles so, only with time you'll see which one will be the male, there is usually only one male and several females in a group… hope this helps. Wil.>

Tunze funds MASNA's Memorial Fund for Publishing Open Access Marine Aquarium Research.     10/16/19
Thanks to Tunze!

Contact: Dr. Kevin Erickson
MASNA President
Fund@MASNA.org (mailto:Fund@MASNA.org)
Dr. Junda Lin Memorial Fund for Publishing Open Access Marine Aquarium Research website HERE (http://masna.org/masna-programs/memorial-publishing-fund/?utm_source=Public+BOD+Email&utm_campaign=02481ede98-Tunze+Funds+MASNA%27s+Open+Access+Memorial+Fund_COPY&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_684126d033-02481ede98-457263653&mc_cid=02481ede98&mc_eid=[UNIQID]) 
For Public Release on October 16, 2019,
Tunze USA supports the Dr Junda Lin Memorial Fund for Publishing Open Access Marine Aquarium Research.

MASNA would like to thank Tunze, the newest supporter of the Dr. Junda Lin Open Access Memorial Fund for Publishing Open Access Marine Aquarium Research, for their generous $2,500 contribution towards providing industry, scientists, and hobbyists with freely available, open access scientific research.

Tunze's support will allow MASNA to offset the publishing costs for scientists and students that are working on research directly relevant to the marine aquarium industry.

As the aquarium industry grows, this research can provide industry and hobbyists alike with critical, up to date information about aquaculture protocols, trends in marine ornamental trade, novel equipment design, and a number of other relevant topics.
http://masna.org/masna-programs/memorial-publishing-fund/In?utm_source=Public+BOD+Email&utm_campaign=02481ede98-Tunze+Funds+MASNA%27s+Open+Access+Memorial+Fund_COPY&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_684126d033-02481ede98-457263653&mc_cid=02481ede98&mc_eid=[UNIQID] 2017, MASNA introduced the Dr. Junda Lin Memorial Fund for Publishing Open Access Marine Aquarium Research with the goal to off-set the cost to students of publishing research as open access articles in order to promote the spread of scientific ideas to not only scientists, but to anyone who is interested in the research, by making it freely available.
Dr. Junda Lin was a Professor of Biological Sciences at the Florida Institute of Technology and the Director of the Institute for Marine Research (IMR). Dr. Lin’s Lab focused on the development of aquaculture technology for marine ornamental species to offset and replace wild collection. Dr. Lin’s lab studied the basic biological processes of several shellfish and fish species, evaluated their aquaculture potential, and developed cultivation technology.

Rather than in the traditional scientific publishing scheme, where the reader of the scientific article incurs a cost to access the article, with open access articles, the article is available to the world, and the author is charged a fee when the article is accepted by the publisher.

Therefore, the Dr. Junda Lin Memorial Fund for Publishing Open Access Marine Aquarium Research is a fund supported by individuals, aquarium clubs, businesses, and universities that provides students with a financial offset to the costs of publishing a scientific article as an open access article. More information on how to apply and the donation link can be found HERE (http://masna.org/masna-programs/memorial-publishing-fund/?utm_source=Public+BOD+Email&utm_campaign=02481ede98-Tunze+Funds+MASNA%27s+Open+Access+Memorial+Fund_COPY&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_684126d033-02481ede98-457263653&mc_cid=02481ede98&mc_eid=[UNIQID]) .

Scientific research has historically been published and distributed by for-profit companies that require readers to pay to access content, comprising a 19.6 billion dollar industry that results in inaccessibility for most hobbyists. Research institutions have begun terminating long-standing subscriptions to for-profit journals, and many independent researchers have taken an active stance on information dissemination by opting to publish in open-access formats.

MASNA fully supports open-access publishing, and firmly believes that research relating to aquarium science should be available to anyone who wishes to read it. For more details on recent open-access publishing developments, see HERE (https://www.theguardian.com/education/2019/mar/28/paywalls-block-scientific-progress-research-should-be-open-to-everyone?utm_source=Public+BOD+Email&utm_campaign=02481ede98-Tunze+Funds+MASNA%27s+Open+Access+Memorial+Fund_COPY&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_684126d033-02481ede98-457263653&mc_cid=02481ede98&mc_eid=[UNIQID]) .

MASNA would like to thank the donors that have contributed to the Junda Lin Memorial Fund thus far. Open-access publications allow the rapid dissemination of research to the non-scientific public that would otherwise not be able to access this information. The modern marine sciences increasingly recognize the importance of informed hobbyists and citizen scientists in data collection, volunteer work, and in their ability to drive changes in public outlook and policy.

MASNA welcomes donations from any business, organization, or individual who shares the belief that advancements in science should be freely available to the general public, and those that support MASNA’s mission to encourage the sustainability and ethical growth of the marine aquarium industry through the education of its members and the wider hobbyist community.

For more information and to donate to the fund, please click here: http://masna.org/masna-programs/memorial-publishing-fund/?utm_source=Public+BOD+Email&utm_campaign=02481ede98-Tunze+Funds+MASNA%27s+Open+Access+Memorial+Fund_COPY&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_684126d033-02481ede98-457263653&mc_cid=02481ede98&mc_eid=[UNIQID]

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Golden Puffer behaving oddly     10/16/19
Hi there,
<Hey William>
I was referred to you by Michael Wand from Bay Bridge Aquarium and Pet. I have a golden puffer in my saltwater tank for about three weeks and he’s been eating and swimming fine up until this past Sunday. That’s when I swapped out the activated carbon. After the carbon swap, he’s been more lethargic, he’s been refusing to eat, he’s been breathing harder, and now he has a swollen abdomen. Is this cause for concern??!
<I don't think the carbon swap was the reason for the change on its behavior, rather it coincided with something else. Could you please tell us more about your system?... water volume and parameters (numbers), tank mates, puffer's diet.>
All the best,
William Lei
<Cheers. Wil.>

MASNA's 4th Annual Scientific Poster Session was held in Orlando at MACNA 2019!       10/15/19
NEWS CONTACT: Tim Lyons, M.Sc.
MASNA's Director of Conservation
Poster@MASNA.org (mailto:Poster@MASNA.org)
MASNA's 4th Annual Scientific Poster Session Recap
Each year, MASNA provides the opportunity for scientists in any field relating to the marine aquarium hobby to showcase their research at the Marine Aquarium Conference of North America (MACNA).

The goal of this MASNA program is to open a line of communication between scientists, industry, and interested hobbyists, so that scientific research crucial to the sustainability and advancement of the hobby is freely available to all stakeholder groups. MASNA’s 4^thAnnual Scientific Poster Session was held at MACNA 2019 in Orlando, Florida. Electronic versions of this year’s posters will be posted, and can be viewed at https://masna.org/masna-programs/masna-scientific-poster-session/?utm_source=Public+BOD+Email&utm_campaign=f29a0daa70-MASNA+4th+Scientific+Poster+Session_COPY_01&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_684126d033-f29a0daa70-457263653.

This year, MASNA recognized two exceptional student researchers at the undergraduate and graduate level, for producing and effectively communicating the best poster in each of their respective categories.

Our graduate poster session awardee is Sarah Hutchins. Sarah is a masters student at the University of Florida’s Tropical Aquaculture Laboratory in Ruskin, Florida. Sarah’s poster entitled “Optimizing Culture Parameters of the Cyclopoid Copepod Oithona colcarva” addressed a critical aspect of marine ornamental aquaculture-producing high quality live food items for larval fishes.

Our undergraduate poster session awardee is Lauren Block, a third year student at the University of Hawai’i at Mānoa. Her poster entitled “Coculture: A larval rearing technique for clownfish (Amphiprion ocellaris) with the tropical paracalenid copepod, Parvocalanus crassirostris” discussed the benefits of growing larval marine fishes in tandem with copepods to provide a continuous supply of nutritious live food items. Congratulations to Sarah (above, left) and Lauren (above, right).

We would like to thank the authors and judges that participated in this year’s poster session. Additionally, we thank this years poster session sponsors EcoTech Marine, The Washington D.C. Area Marine Aquarist Society (WAMAS), and the Colorado Organization for Reef and Aquatic Life (CORAL). We firmly believe in the benefit of open communication, and encourage interested researchers, students, and hobbyists to consider participating in future MASNA scientific poster sessions.

About MASNA:
MASNA is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization composed of marine aquarium societies, individual hobbyists, and industry partners from North America and abroad, totaling several thousand individuals.

MASNA’s goals are to:
* Educate our members through online and published material, the MACNA conference, and other sanctioned events.
* Assist in forming and promoting the growth of clubs within the hobby while ensuring a sustainable future for the marine environment.
* Support the efforts to eliminate abuses in collecting and transporting marine organisms through education, assistance, and encouragement.
* Encourage the ethical growth of the marine aquarium hobby and support captive breeding/propagation efforts.

More at www.MASNA.org

Water change regime       10/15/19
Dear Team
<Hey Srinivas>
Happy to connect again and looking forward to another wonderful advice from you’ll , which I feel, would not fail this time too.
I have a nano set up. Details as under:
Display: 16-inch cube
Sump: 25 gallons which hosts a Skimmer, Chaetomorpha and DSB and the return pump
The net water volume is about 120 liters (32 gallons) (PS the overall built-up volume is about 40 gallons capacity)
<Good total water volume for a nano>
Am in process of adding few corals (few SPS, few Zoas and three to four small fishes) and am curious regarding the best way to maintain water parameters.
Keeping in mind the costs and efforts involved, I landed on the below three options on which I want your views (and the best one in your opinion). Any other alternatives are most welcome.
Option 1: Monthly Water Changes
On a moderate bio load, undertake 30-40% monthly water change. Check the water parameters weekly for the trace elements and dose as required
Option 2: Weekly Water Changes
Perform Weekly 15-20 % water changes and maintain the water parameters. Avoid dosing unless absolutely necessary
Option 3: Alternate day water change – 3 liters or 1 gallon
Undertake about 3 liters or 1-gallon water change every alternate day. No dosing. Automate/semi automate the procedure to reduce manual effort. Monthly maintenance for tank and equipment to be carried.
Please note, I would be using Ro/Di water for all water changes and top-ups.
I further presume that option 2 would be most costly followed by option 1 and ultimately option 3 being most cost efficient on the ones mentioned above
I am aware that all or any of the above methods can work. But for my personal satisfaction, please let me know the best option in your view with reference to the overall health of the tank and the intended livestock including corals
Your views would be highly appreciated
<Personally, I’d go for the Option 3... I’ve noticed through many years in the aquarium trade that frequent water changes of less volume, are more beneficial and less stressful for fish than less frequent, higher volume changes; when fishes and corals are sold, water in the systems should be replenished with new water, so water changes are inevitably made very frequently, that's why I can tell you that the third option is better, another advantage is that you will be adding essential elements to the tank with every water change, and there is less need for additional supplements, I hope I have clarified your doubts. Cheers. Wil.>

Bottom-sitting Bolivian       10/15/19
I believe my fish is recovering now, but from what I'm not sure.
<Good to hear!>
In many years of fishkeeping I haven't dealt with something like this and couldn't find it in any book.
Tankmates in my 30 gallon are one Bolivian Ram, seven well behaved Pristella tetras and three African dwarf frogs.
<Pristella tetras are great, and good companions for the Rams. The frogs are a bit of a gamble, being tricky to feed at the best of times.>
Sandy bottom, lots of plants and caves. Tank has been cycled for years and water parameters are 0, 0 , 10 with 7.8 pH and 80* F. Weekly water changes of 25%.
<Sounds fine.>
About six weeks ago my two-year old Bolivian Ram suddenly began bottom-sitting and spending more time in the back of tank instead of front and center as usual. No change in color, no clamped fins, remains alert and his appetite good, but gets around with some difficulty. I target feed him, and tried sneaking in some kanamycin but he wouldn't touch that. He heartily eats a variety of Spirulina flakes, cichlid pellets, and occasional frozen-thawed treats however. No freeze-dried food. The only medicating I've done is Epsom salt for a few days which neither helped nor hurt. He continued bottom-sitting but got no worse. I was getting ready to write you when yesterday for the first time in weeks he was hovering
*above* the bottom and swimming about more. Still not 100% but hopefully he's on the mend from whatever ailed him.
Could his swim bladder have been out of order temporarily? Is that a thing?
<Not really, no. While I'm sure swim bladder infections are possible, mostly it's a symptom, like a runny nose in humans, and not a specific disease. Mostly when people say "swim bladder disease" what they actually mean is that the fish isn't swimming properly. That can have all kinds of causes. Constipation at the mild end of the range, all the way through to genetic disorders and lethal bacterial infections.>
Usually bottom sitting this long doesn't end well, so it's curious. If he relapses should I try the antibiotic in a qt bath? Thanks so much for being here. Your work is much needed and appreciated. Jannika
<If the fish is recovering, I'd be tempted to leave things be. Epsom Salt can be used safely for as long as you want, and antibiotics, if used correctly, should be safe. Treating with Metronidazole is another good idea with sick cichlids, handling the common Hexamita and similar infections better than anything else. But beyond that, observing and waiting is probably the best bet. Cheers, Neale.>

Equipment cleaning- reef tanks       10/15/19
Dear team
How frequently should be clean out equipment’s like wavemaker , skimmer pumps and return pump ?
<Depends on your particular system and chemistry but a *regular schedule* is the important thing. It's very easy to overlook this kind of maintenance. Out of sight, out of mind. Yet some things like pumps in particular are both expensive and cannot be allowed to fail. Preventative maintenance is the embodiment of an ounce of prevention being worth a pound of cure. I have learned this the hard way in the past by "letting it go" for too long and not realizing I messed up until an impeller seized up and either wrecked the powerhead or else lead to its early demise due to wear and tear, which I could have prevented by be being diligent and throwing the thing in the sink with vinegar and a toothbrush sooner. Money down the drain or worse.>
Is it a must to clean them in vinegar?
<Not necessarily but it's simple, cheap and easy. See also here http://www.wetwebmedia.com/clnaqfaqs2.htm . Towards the top of the page you'll find an entry where those wiser than I have expounded a bit on using diluted chlorine bleach. Please read there. In particular the safety information. Personally I consider that sort of the "hardcore option" and would save it for times you really have hard-to-remove buildup, and/or have concerns about contamination of some kind. The Nuclear Option of cleaning. Otherwise, about once a month, inspect all your plumbing, fittings, pumps and clean as necessary. Also check soft parts like gaskets and tubing. I also advise unplugging powerheads and wavemakers, putting them in the sink, or a clean fish-tank-dedicated plastic bucket and soaking them for a few hours. Then take them apart as much as is easily done and use a fresh toothbrush to scrub 'em down thoroughly. Soaking them lets the white buildup flake off easily. I'm always sad to see a little coralline algae go, but it's the price we have to pay. Freshly cleaned "things with propellers" are vital if you want to keep that GPH flow rate we all hope to have. Rinse them off very well. Short answer: you must clean them, about once a month, and can use diluted plain old vinegar, or else diluted bleach as per Bob's info in the link above. Beware that certain bleach in the grocery store has additives in it for laundry use and check the bottle.>
Is using vinegar to clean safe?
<Safe and advised. Obviously take care when handling it. I have found that the biggest risk in the reek of vinegar aggravating housemates...if you've cleaned out a coffee maker you know the feeling!>
<Hope this helps! -Earl>

Quick question       10/15/19
Hi there - I'm hoping this has come through to the appropriate person?
I'd like to interview you for a book I'm writing on entrepreneurship (specifically looking at small to midsize companies, not large corporates).
If you're open to it, I have a couple of questions related to the work you're doing at wetwebmedia.com.
I'm happy to feature you and/or your company in the book, or you can remain anonymous. Completely up to you.
To give a bit more context; I'm an organizational psychologist and author.
I've written a few books on psychology and leadership in the past. (If you type "Sam Page Psychology" into Amazon, I'm sure they'll pop up.)
As a first step, I can just email you a few questions to take a look at?
(Won't take any more than 10mins of your time).
P.S. I send a weekly newsletter to about 35,000 entrepreneurs and business managers. If you like, I'll forward you a couple of issues so you can get a feel for the type of content I plan to include in this book.
Kind Regards,
Sam Page,
B.Psych(Hons), M.Psych, M.B.A., MAPS, Registered Psychologist
If you don't want to hear from me again, click here.
<Do send all/both along Sam, and I'll take an earnest look, resp. Bob Fenner, progenitor.>

Re: Which Fang blenny, if any?     10/14/19
Thanks for the reply. In the very rare chance the blenny did happen to bite
one of my fish in defence, would my fish die?
<Some small chance; about as likely as perishing from swimming into something, physical trauma in the tank. B>

Re: Saddleback Buttterfly diagnosis      10/14/19
Thank you as suspected . I will feed metronidazole . Will chloroquine phosphate kill shrimp / any crustaceans in the display ?
<Might: I would move all crustaceans elsewhere>
The lesions actually look better than one week ago . But I guess fish can do ok with uronema but perish quickly once the disease becomes systemic.
<Often so>
This is a tough problem to eradicate ThanksJimmy
<Indeed. BobF>

Researching for a new tank /Neale       10/12/19
First a little background. When I lived in NY I had both freshwater and saltwater aquariums for over 10 years. I used regular tap water for the freshwater tank and I had a e-spring filter for my saltwater. That setup worked perfectly. I recently moved to Dallas Texas and was thinking about doing a very large freshwater tank but while doing research, I keep running into more questions.
Everyone here says the water here is hard. And it is. It also tastes bad. I purchased a new house and was recommended to install a water softener system for the house which uses salt. I have not installed it yet. How would I make sure my appliances and bath water are clean without this? And how would I maintain a tank if I do install this?
I am trying to keep a tank for a Mbu puffer, silver arowana and maybe a stingray.
<The main thing to recognise here is that a domestic water softener is not what you want for fishkeeping. Since you're an experienced fishkeeper, I'll cut to the chase: domestic water softeners don't de-mineralise water, they remove temporary hardness (i.e., carbonate salts) using an ion exchange system, typically using sodium chloride. The result is water that will lather nicely, reducing laundry costs, and won't create limescale around pipes and heating elements. The downside is that the water has increased levels of sodium chloride, and the permanent hardness (typically sulphate
and chloride salts) isn't removed at all. So what you're creating isn't deionised water, but simply mineral-rich water with a different composition to the tap water you started with. It's debatable whether the amount of sodium is actually high enough to be harmful to drink, though most water softener companies install a bypass tap in the kitchen so that people have the option to drink the un-softened water (which is what most doctors recommend, simply on the basis of 'better safe than sorry' rather than any actual science). It should also go without saying that typical water softeners do nothing about nitrate and phosphate levels, nor ammonia and chlorine. Cut a long story short, if you do need to soften your tap water, you'll need an RO system operating separately from the domestic water softener. The eSpring system is simply a carbon block with or without a UV filter that does a bit of polishing to tap water, and doesn't meaningfully change water chemistry. It might well improve the taste of the water as far as you're concerned, but isn't making any difference to your fish. It's the old truth about any cheap solution like this -- if it really did work, we'd all be using it! RO filters are much more expensive, but widely used by marine aquarists simply because they actually work. They remove minerals as well as nitrate, phosphate, etc. What you get is essentially pure water, to which you can add whatever mineral mix you need, whether marine salt mix or something like Discus or Rift Valley salt mix. In any case, Stingrays are astonishingly expensive to keep successfully because they need essentially nitrate-free living conditions, which usually means RO water unless you happen to have tap water with well below 20 mg/l nitrate. Stingrays (and indeed Arowanas) don't care much about water chemistry, and will thrive in medium hardness water (up to about 12 degrees dH) provided water quality is excellent. There's plenty of info on RO filters elsewhere on the WWM website, but if you need any further advice, please do ask. Cheers, Neale.>
Re: Researching for a new tank       10/12/19

Thank you for responding. I checked the house and there’s a garden house outlet right outside the window where the tank will go so I can fill with garden hose and run the filter for a few hours. And for top offs I’ll just collect water in a brute and let settle. This was I can still have the water softener for the house and pipe water for the tank. Does that seem like a better option?
<Yes it does; if you don't mind the inconvenience of heating the water up, I'd store a week in advance of use (for regular vacuuming weekly and water changes). Bob Fenner>

Ick Cure /Neale       10/12/19
Good Moring,
Can I use ick cure in my tank that has a Columbian catfish in it.
<I can think of absolutely no reason why you would have to. None at all.
Columbian Shark Catfish are brackish to marine catfish, any above SG 1.002,
Whitespot/Ick parasites simply won't survive. The free-living stages will be killed immediately, which means, at tropical temperatures, infected Catfish moved into brackish or marine conditions should be completely free of Whitespot/Ick within a week or so. Conversely, if you're keeping the Columbian Sharks in a saltwater system, moving them temporarily into low-end brackish or even hard freshwater should kill off the marine Ick, Cryptocaryon, within a few days as well. Oh, and if you're keeping Columbian Sharks in a plain freshwater tank, then don't. Just don't. Add the salt, and the Whitespot will go! Cheers, Neale.>

Saddleback Buttterfly diagnosis       10/12/19
Hey Crew,
Can you tell me what we are looking at here? Pale lesions under the scales of this saddleback. Eating OK not really behaving stressed . 4 " fish introduced one month ago . In a 180g FOWLR . Water parameters are good ( Sg 1.022 , pH 8.2 , temp 78 degF, Nitrates 5 ppm )
Thanks Jimmy
<Unfortunately this looks like Uronema. DO ASAPractical look up on WWM Re.
This fish needs to be treated, likely the entire system, ASAP. Bob Fenner>

Which Fang blenny, if any?       10/12/19
Hi crew! I have the rare opportunity (at least where I live) to purchase captive bred Fang blennies, specifically meiacanthus grammistes and/or Meiacanthus nigrolineatus.
I have been reading your site and others about them all day but still not convinced if they would be compatible in my aquarium or not.
My main question is, if they did happen to bite another fish in defence, what would happen to the fish they bit? I don't have any predatory fish but a few of my bigger fish can be a little boisterous and cranky at times (mainly bristletooth tangs).
<These Grammistes blennies generally get along w/ all fish tankmates, using their fanged teeth to bite back challengers mostly>
Also, if it turns out not to be an issue, would you have a preference of one over the other?
<Mmm; I find both attractive>
Is one less aggressive, less poisonous etc. I love the look of both so any help in deciding which to get would be great.
By the way, just for a little background, my tank is 150 gallons with a ~30 gallon sump housing 3 different bristletooth tangs, 2 different watchman gobies, 3 different plump dragonettes, a yellow wrasse, maroon clown, clarkii clown, starry blenny, pair of coral beauty angels, azure damsel, 2 bangaii cardinals, royal Gramma, cleaner shrimp, pistol shrimp, urchins, hermits etc. Please advise if you see any other compatibility issues between a fangtooth blenny and my current stock.
<All these should coexist here>
Thanks in advance for your time and info!
<Glad to share. Bob Fenner> 

Re: Dipping Procedure     10/12/19
Thanks. I have a bunch of fish that were scratching at the gill area pretty consistent. Figured it was crypto or possibly flukes. Have the fish in QT and both copper and Prazipro didn't stop the flashing.
<Could be other source/s of irritation>
I was going to transfer the fish to a new QT tank but wanted to FWD them prior
to going into the new QT tank. Some of them also look a little raggedy from either the copper or what's ailing them so was going to also give them a bath in methylene blue.
<DO review Ed Noga et al.s works re sampling, checking under a 'scope. More
organisms are lost due to over and mis-medication than any other cause. B>

Researching for a new tank; FW sys. H2O trtmt., Mbu puffer...     10/12/19
First a little background. When I lived in NY I had both freshwater and saltwater aquariums for over 10 years. I used regular tap water for the freshwater tank and I had a e-spring filter for my saltwater.
<Ahh, the water/source filter>
That setup worked perfectly. I recently moved to Dallas Texas and was thinking about doing a very large freshwater tank but while doing research, I keep running into more questions.
Everyone here says the water here is hard. And it is. It also tastes bad.
<Ah yes... do know re; even so, better than the liquid rock we put up w/ in S. Cal>
I purchased a new house and was recommended to install a water softener system for the house which uses salt. I have not installed it yet. How would I make sure my appliances and bath water are clean without this? And how would I maintain a tank if I do install this?
<I would definitely skip using such ion-exchange, salt charged water for potable and aquarium uses. Too much sodium... You could have a dual set of plumbing, or at least one line that skips such a water conditioner (outside of the house outlets do so). Oh, and there are other means of whole or partial house water filtration. I use some R.O. mixed with tap myself...>
I am trying to keep a tank for a Mbu puffer, silver arowana and maybe a stingray.
<DO study up re the Mbu... get really big and MEAN! Likely to bite the other fishes. Bob Fenner>

Ick Cure     10/12/19
Good Moring,
Can I use ick cure in my tank that has a Columbian catfish in it.
<The API product? I would NOT use Malachite Green on scaleless catfishes...
Instead, a real cure can be effected here by raising temperature, and possibly adding sea salt. Please READ here:
and the linked files above. Bob Fenner>

Re: Travis Carter’s Mega Angel Tank        10/10/19
Great point on Captive bred specimens. I know Kevin Kohen is bringing in some CB to Divers Den.
<Ahh! Good. This Arusetta is one of the earliest bred Angels.>
Looking forward to listening to your talk in Chicago weekend after next!
<Do please introduce yourself. Cheers, BobF>

Re: Best filtration for floating plants in Amazon blackwater        10/10/19
Hi again,
My tank is just about ready for cycling; just need to install and start the Eheim Classic 250. I've searched high and low on WWM, but can't find the answer to my question; ok two questions. Just a reminder, my tank is a bow front approx.100 litres and it will house schools of cardinal tetras and Corydoras sterbai with Amazon Frogbit only. Local water is soft and slightly acidic. Water column is 16" deep, though I'd like to keep 2-3" clear at the top.
<Sounds good, and I agree, reducing the depth would be a good idea, if only in places (such as a deeper bed of sand at one end, shallower at the other). Corydoras naturally come from very shallow streams, often barely covering their backs, and may struggle to swim to the surface if the water is very deep.>
1. Is it better for the cardinals to expand the size of the shoal than to mix half cardinals and half rummy nose tetras? I love them both and I've read on WWM that they will school together.
<They do cohabit extremely well. Not necessarily school, but certainly largish groups of each will ignore one another while requiring similar conditions and tankmates. Cardinals, like Neons, tend to hang around
towards the bottom, whereas Rummynoses are more active in the midwater, even relatively open areas. As an aside, a third species that gets on well are Silver Hatchetfish, which school at the top but are just as mellow.
I've seen Discus set-ups with these three species, plus Corydoras sterbai, that were spectacular.>
2. To keep the water circulation mellow and minimize pushing the roots of the Frogbit around, how low should I set the spraybar, and would there be any advantage to positioning the spraybar vertically?
<Tough one to answer. Positioning the spray bar vertically would not create an equal "vertical" stream of water because water pressure lower down would slow down the rate at which water emerges from the holes lower down the spray bar. There's nothing intrinsically wrong with floating plants moving, so long as their roots don't get tangled up and torn, but conversely, this tends to happen anyway in the confines of an aquarium, and best remedied by "cropping back" excess plants so you leave just the best specimens in place. Amazon Frogbit multiplies dramatically under favourable conditions, and once the leaves get wedged into corners and damp, those surplus plants will tend to rot. In this sense floating plants are quite high maintenance, but remember, you're physically removing nitrate and phosphate in the process, which keeps the water quality good. Sometimes the better approach is to reduce the flow of water by turning the taps on the filter hoses, but realistically, the trade-off isn't necessarily worth it if water quality and/or oxygenation suffer. In any case, replacing the spray bar with a simple return pipe, such as the Eheim Classic 250 2213 Outlet Pipe, reduces the turbulence without compromising on filter turnover rate. Directing the outflow at a vertical rock or bogwood root can further diffuse current, reducing water movement.>
Guess I snuck in a third question there.
Thank you!
<Welcome, Neale.>

Dipping Procedure        10/10/19
I couldn't find online but is a 30 minute bath in Methylene blue safe following a fresh water dip?
<... a bath, for marine fishes? Yes, in saltwater w/ Methylene Blue. B>

ID catfish      10/9/19
So back in Feb we got given a little Catfish, maybe 2.5-3 inches long nose to tail tip. We all assumed this was a Syno eupterus.
He/she is very timid and after 7 months not often seen other than whisker tips poking out of the cave only to disappear if you look at it.
Anyway from the occasional disturbance during vacuuming the little guy is probably only 4 inches big now, or double platy length. Everything I read says they grow 1 inch per month? I believe it is getting enough food because if we forget to give it wafers overnight it decimates my 7 year old crypts as punishment, but otherwise leaves all plants alone.
As it is so shy I don't have any photos other than when it was in the bag in Feb, but it is still a pale cream colour with dark spots.
Do we have a hybrid, a dwarf, or can you think of anything else that might look like a Featherfin but remain smaller (in which case I would consider more...)?
We are at the point now of moving everything from the 180 l into our 6 foot tank, and if this guy is going to undergo a growth spurt and threaten our Endler's and celestial pearls now is the time for rehoming, cos I don't think I'll ever be able to catch it in the big tank!
Thanks for any insight,
<<It may be a hybrid, resembling Synodontis nigriventris in some ways. But I'm going to stick my neck out and suggest Synodontis polystigma. It's a Congo species, so might creep into batches of wild-caught fish -- something that quite often happens with wild-caught fish, with collectors chucking in some "make weight" fish into their haul. I'd also suggest you spend some time over on PlanetCatfish, at the Synodontis page, here:
It's a good place to try and identify mystery specimens. Cheers, Neale.>

Re: 3 spot angel, Crypt       10/9/19
Bob, Just a follow-up .
Despite the cloudy eye problem , the 3 spot angel has been feeding aggressively and readily taking antibiotic infused pellets .
<Ah, tres bien>
Spg was lowered to 1.015 . Eyes improved dramatically but not yet healed.
<This takes time... >
Flashing against objects has decreased Will give the medicated food for a total of 7 days . This fish has a much more robust constitution / health than is generally experienced in the hobbyThanksJimmy
<Cheers, BobF>

Bluehead Wrasse Reef Aquarium      10/9/19
WWM Crew,
I'm getting bored with the tank again and looking to do something different. I have been looking through my old books (I'm old enough to have actual hobby books) for inspiration and something you do not see
anymore today are tanks with the bigger fish. I love corals, but everything lately is trending around the collector's sticks with little fish and I have no interest at the moment. My current aquarium is a 110
gallon (48"x18"x30"), basically a 75g with a little more height. This current tank has been setup as an LPS reef with Gorgonia for 4 or 5 years now and has a harem of royal gramma, a pair of pygmy angels and a Hawkfish.
There used to be some gobies in there....but Hawkfish happened.
I would like to re-build my aquarium around a small harem of Bluehead Wrasse (Thalassoma bifasciatum).
System wise, is my tank big enough?
<Mmm; barely... One male, or becoming male... perhaps 3-5 females, juveniles....>
Could I do one male and two females? Tankmates would consist of blennies and pygmy angels for algae control (No tangs as the tank is too small). I already have a mated pair of cherubfish (Centropyge argi) that would stay.
Hawkfish would probably stay as my gobies' spirits can live through him.
I could keep or sell the Royal Gramma harem if it is a problem with the wrasse.
<Should be okay; esp. if there's plenty of nooks, crannies>
The tank would remain Gorgonias and LPS as I like these and I find SPS to be too finicky.
<I have a piece (art.) coming out next ish of Coral on gorg.s (along w/ one by Felicia McCauley)>
Regarding cleanup crew, are there any snails or crabs that would be safe with the Bluehead Wrasse. I know they generally planktivores but will also eat shrimp, snails and stars. Are there any mobile inverts that can work in a wrasse tank? Perhaps larger conch or Mithrax type crabs?
<I'd risk larger gastropods, not crustaceans>
Aquascaping would be live rock from Florida aquaculture with special seafloor grade sand. What thickness would I need on the sandbed for the wrasse.
<3-4 inches of something fine/r>
Rock would be arranged to keep an open bottom as much as possible, probably something L shaped along the bottom and tapered in height from one side to the other.
Feeding wise, I use a liquid food blend of Mysis, Arctic Pods, Fish Eggs, Rotifers, Oyster Eggs, etc. With the wrasse being a larger fish, I may add a daily manual feeding of frozen mussels (or fresh oyster when in season).
<Do mix this up w/ other foods. I'd likely use a good pellet (Hikari, New Life...) and an assortment of frozen/defrosted San Francisco Bay Brand meaty foods>
System filtration-wise, I currently run a skimmer rated for a 150-gal tank with UV. Since I suspect I can no longer keep a cleanup crew with the wrasse in the tank, would an algae turf scrubber be recommended here?
<A nice addition; yes.>
Any other thoughts?
Chris in New Orleans
<None at this juncture. Bob Fenner>
Re: Bluehead Wrasse Reef Aquarium      10/9/19

Thanks Bob and WWM crew! Regarding the harem of Bluehead wrasse, how many cubes of food do you think they would require daily?
<Only a part of one... maybe a quarter or so until the fish are grown>
I am a fan of the SFBB single ingredients and I usually keep mussel and the large plankton on hand - I would supplement with the same. I do want to make sure the turf scrubber is sized properly for the little underwater piggies. I have kept Gorgonia for over 20 years, with it being my first coral back in 1999. Purple sea rods will always have a place in my tank lol.
I am looking forward to your article. On the inverts, I will stick with conch then, but how would a Sally Lightfoot Crab fair (speculation is fine)?
<If/when it sheds, unless it has good hiding... might be eaten>
Finally on the substrate, I was not clear on the comment - would the Special Grade be a good gradation (1 - 2 mm) or did I need to go finer?
<The 1-2 mm is good to use>
Thanks again, Chris
<Cheers Chris. BobF>

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