Oyster Reef Aquarium Project

Share your aquarium background projects, get ideas, advice and feedback from the community!

Re: Oyster Reef Aquarium Project

Postby Chasmodes » Thu Oct 19, 2017 12:54 pm

Last night, I dropped the sg from 1.015 to 1.010 in the 20g high, since that tank had the most scratching. The fish behavior changed big time in many ways. First, all of the blennies and gobies went into hiding, including one blenny that spent the night against the glass at the filter intake. All of the other blennies hid in oyster shells. The skilletfish either hid or stuck to the glass, not much different than before. The killifish pretty much behaved the same and even kept feeding.

I think that it had an immediate effect on the parasites, maybe not killing them, but agitating them because all of the fish scratched even more than before (and that was a lot of scratching before). I have no proof of that other than watching the fish behavior.

This morning, nothing changed, all of the fish still hiding and the killies doing the same thing. I was a bit concerned about dropping it too fast that I might have hurt the fish. So, this morning, I tried to feed them thinking that if they perked up and ate, all should be OK, and if not...not sure what I'd do.

So, I fed them a block of frozen mysid shrimp. All of the fish perked up and ate, and many of them took the food right from my hand. They foraged a bit and then they went back to hiding.

The grass shrimp seem unaffected.

So, I'll continue at this sg for a week and I might drop it one more point if all goes well.
User avatar
Chasmodes
 
Posts: 40
Joined: Mon Aug 01, 2016 8:41 am

Re: Oyster Reef Aquarium Project

Postby Chasmodes » Wed Nov 15, 2017 9:30 am

The Ulva in the 20g high tank of death is surviving, a lot of it too, along with three mummichogs, an unknown number of mud crabs (between 1 and 5, because they almost never come out), and about 8 grass shrimp. Oh yeah, I moved the last small mummichog, a male, from the 20g long to the 20g high tank of death, because, he would have been killed anyway by the blennies. I caught them chasing and biting his tail and it was shredded. I suspect the smaller killi was killed the same way. He was eaten by the gobies and blennies, nothing left of him now. The killi that I moved started courting the two females right away. I misidentified one of the females last month as a male because it started courting behavior. Apparently, mummichogs get even more confused about their own sex as I do trying to ID them. They are all doing well, although, I suspect that they are carriers of the disease that killed my other fish (at least one of them was a carrier). I hope the 20g long is OK, so far so good, no signs of disease (scratching, etc.) by any of the fish.

Here are a few videos of the 20g long. Hope you all like them. So these videos show an hideous amount of cyanobacteria. Since I shot them, I've reduced the lights on to about 2-3 hours after I get home for work. Today is the third day. So, it is dark in the tanks for most of the day and night. The result is that most of the cyano has died off. I will continue until it's gone. Hopefully, at that point, the macros and other green algae can get a better foothold. Other than the cyanobacteria, the 20g long is doing well. Water parameters are perfect.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KI1HEINN6Go&t=8s

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hKi-G9DkTkM&t=9s

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oSvHcMHIMAs
User avatar
Chasmodes
 
Posts: 40
Joined: Mon Aug 01, 2016 8:41 am

Re: Oyster Reef Aquarium Project

Postby gminor » Mon Nov 20, 2017 3:12 am

Sorry to hear about all the trouble with the tank. Some really interesting livestock behavior in the video.
Glenn
User avatar
gminor
Site Admin
 
Posts: 419
Joined: Wed Oct 21, 2009 1:39 pm
Location: Lawrence, Kansas

Re: Oyster Reef Aquarium Project

Postby Chasmodes » Mon Nov 20, 2017 11:22 am

Thanks Glenn. I can't get enough watching them.

Thanks McPuff.


Update:


The 20g long cyano problem has been reduced to a minimal amount by cutting back the lighted period to 3 hours per day, darkness the rest (not total blackout though). The tank looks a lot better. I went collecting on Saturday, and we caught everything except for pipefish and blennies. The water temperature on the Bay was 49 degrees, so those species probably already headed out to deep water. I added a couple colonies of tunicates to the tank along with another attempt at growing Ulva. I also tossed the old red macro algae for some healthier specimens. The old was holding it's own, but the new brought a few amphipods to the tank. I added a couple live razor clams to the 20g high along with some tunicates.


Regarding the tunicates, razor clams, and mussels (a.k.a. sea squirts or sea grapes), I'm hoping that they'll help with the detritus, but I may have to purchase some food for filter feeders to keep the alive long term. Again, this is an experiment. What works well will continue into practice and what doesn't will be a lessoned learned idea left in the past.


As far as the cyano, I still plan to treat for it chemically to get rid of it all together. I need the longer photo periods so the Ulva has a chance to grow. Patches of GHA are growing too, but I don't mind them, they kinda look cool.

Here's a full tank shot video, where you can get a better sense of the aquascaping:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=98ZMIozu7EE&t=3s

A little closer in, focusing on the largest cultch:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mlzm60aYuCM&t=3s
User avatar
Chasmodes
 
Posts: 40
Joined: Mon Aug 01, 2016 8:41 am

Re: Oyster Reef Aquarium Project

Postby Chasmodes » Tue Nov 21, 2017 8:29 am

Here are some pictures of the 20g long for those looking for updates and don't have time for videos. I have a couple more videos that I'll post later today. I have to do some work on them first.

Full Tank Shot (probably the most important pic for this forum since the them is aquascaping) :lol: :
Image

Two colonies of tunicates (sea squirts):
Image

A couple blennies surrounding a patch of green hair algae:
Image

A pair of grass shrimp:
Image

A tunicate that found its way into an empty oyster shell. It was attached to the red macroalgae (gracilaria sp.?) in the foreground. I have no idea how it wound up in the oyster shell. My hunch is that either a fish or mud crab moved it there, probably the former.
Image

A close up of the tunicate colony:
Image

If you zoom in on the center of the above pic, on one of the tunicates is an encrusting bryozoan colony. I can't tell if it is alive or not. I don't see tentacles, so maybe not. I hope it's alive though, that would be really cool. If it isn't, it is still encouraging because these tunicates probably spent their entire lives at this location, so the chances of me finding more live bryozoans are pretty good. I'm optimistic.
Image
User avatar
Chasmodes
 
Posts: 40
Joined: Mon Aug 01, 2016 8:41 am

Re: Oyster Reef Aquarium Project

Postby Chasmodes » Tue Nov 21, 2017 8:43 am

I finished with the last two videos. Hope you like them. Sorry for them being shaky at times. I was using a tripod and sometimes when you re-position the camera, the tripod sticks even though I loosened everything. I need to find another way to do it.

In this video, you can see a live barnacle at the 50 second mark:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ic32kpoT5Fo&t=19s

I kept the camera focused on the largest cultch in the area where the blennies are the most active. It is fun to watch them pop in and out of their hidey holes.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BWzTtVySdFs&t=178s

Thanks for watching and checking out my thread. I hope you like the videos. I watch them every chance that I get when I'm away from my tank!
User avatar
Chasmodes
 
Posts: 40
Joined: Mon Aug 01, 2016 8:41 am

Re: Oyster Reef Aquarium Project

Postby Chasmodes » Tue Nov 28, 2017 9:08 am

Update: I purchased some bottled phytoplankton to feed the barnacle, tunicates and mussels that are in both tanks. The bottle directions state that it is concentrated and you only need to add one capful per 50 gallons twice per week. Since I have a good many filter feeding organisms, I'm going to do this three times per week and see how it goes. I may have to look into culturing my own. I also purchased some ChemiClean to eradicate the cyanobacteria, but haven't applied it yet. The longer dark periods seem to keep it at bay. I don't care too much if I see a little of it, but it was getting nasty and taking over the tank. I have this product in my back pocket if I need it.

Rather than ramble on, I figured I'd post some more Chesapeake Bay Brackish eye candy...In the 20g long, I moved a shell with tunicates and a couple mussels on one side of it up and wedged it tightly to the right cultch. I think it looks great, plus, it's easier to observe them. This goby found it to be his favorite hang out:
Image

Here's a view of the cultch with the new addition:
Image

Full Tank Shot:
Image

A few blenny pics:
Image
Image
Image

Can't forget the skilletfish:
Image
Image

I thought that this was a tunicate, and until I inspect it closer, it could still be one covered with unknown material or organisms. But, it occurred to me that it could be a stickleback nest. We did catch one stickleback during that last collecting trip. That fish currently resides in QT at the Glen Echo Park Aquarium:
Image

And guess what showed up in my 20g high tank of death? I was excited to find new life! I believe this to be the ghost anemone, Diadumene leucolena:
Image
User avatar
Chasmodes
 
Posts: 40
Joined: Mon Aug 01, 2016 8:41 am

Re: Oyster Reef Aquarium Project

Postby gminor » Mon Dec 04, 2017 2:40 pm

More great photos. I'm a little afraid to ask where the skilletfish got it's name?
Glenn
User avatar
gminor
Site Admin
 
Posts: 419
Joined: Wed Oct 21, 2009 1:39 pm
Location: Lawrence, Kansas

Re: Oyster Reef Aquarium Project

Postby Chasmodes » Wed Dec 06, 2017 9:22 am

Thanks Glenn!

Apparently, when this fish was initially collected, described and named, the powers that be thought that the shape of this fish resembled a frying skillet. It's interesting to me that when you search the net for "skilletfish", you see them but also plenty of photos of people cooking fish in a skillet! :lol:

There are a couple species in the Atlantic and Carribean that resemble this fish closely. Also the Northern clingfish of the Pacific looks almost identical, but is much larger.

They are the most brave fish in my tank, almost always first to my hand to receive food. Last night, when I cleaned the glass with my magnet algae scraper, all of the fish scurry for cover during that time, except one skilletfish that bravely clung to the glass that I was trying to clean and would not get out of the way! I had to nudge him with my finger so I could clean that 2" square spot that he was clinging to. I was laughing the whole time :lol:
User avatar
Chasmodes
 
Posts: 40
Joined: Mon Aug 01, 2016 8:41 am

Re: Oyster Reef Aquarium Project

Postby Chasmodes » Thu Dec 07, 2017 8:38 am

I have some pics to share from last night. I will have videos later but still need to process them. But for now...

Skilletfish clinging to the oyster cultch:
Image

Tunicates above, goby below:
Image

Naked goby sitting atop a shell with tunicates and live mussels:
Image

A photogenic striped blenny:
Image

Grass shrimp feeding off detritus over some tunicates:
Image

In the 20g high, a cluster of mussels feeding on a phytoplankton meal:
Image

Also in the 20g high, a ghost anemone awaiting its next meal:
Image
User avatar
Chasmodes
 
Posts: 40
Joined: Mon Aug 01, 2016 8:41 am

PreviousNext

Return to Aquarium Backgrounds

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest

cron