Pictures of my reef without skimmer for over a year.
Photos 2/2006, Photos 7/2005
Corals and so on 2/2004, 8/2004, 2/2005
Setting up the tank and Hardware in the beginning
Photos of propagations in my reef
My old reef tanks
Video of fungia sp. spawing eggs 18.12.2005
Tapio's Mini Reef,
run with Haaga's method, the superior way to keep successful mini or nano reef aquarium. Updated 8/2006
Started September 2003.
845 l aquarium (200 x 65 x 65), 170 l refugium and 90 l sump.
About 100 kg of live rock. Most of the rocks are from previous aquariums starting from the year 1993. There is 3-5 cm of coral sand (0-2mm) in the bottom of the aquarium and 5 cm in the bottom of the refugium.
The light comes from two ATI Powermodul 8 x 39w T5. These lamps have been used nearly half a year now. There are 8 ATI Blue plus tubes and 8 Arcadia Marine White tubes. This combination seems to be best to my eyes at the moment. Four blue tubes are on for 13 h and the rest of the tubes for 11 h per day. The ATI Powermodul is a very nice lamp. It has one fan for every two tubes. The fan blows warm air to the sides of the lamps so that aquarium can stay much cooler than with metal halide lights. For that reason I now have to use a heater to keep the water at 26 centigrade. The refugium is light by three 39w T5 tubes (3 x ATI Aquablue Special) on for 12 h per day in opposite daylight rhythm.
Water flows from the aquarium overflow directly to the refugium and from there through overflow to the sump. As a return pump there is Ocean Runner 3500. Water movement in the aquarium is achieved with Tunze Stream 12000 on a Singlecontroller, Tunze 7410 pump and with Tunze Wavebox. Wavebox produces about 1 cm high wave in my tank in the daytime. Balling method is used to maintain calcium and alkalinity. Calcium chloride and sodium carbonate liquids are added with GroTech TEC III NG dosing pump. Sodium chloride free salt mix is not used at the time to test its influence on my reef. Water level is maintained with DIY mechanical level switch connected to pressurized RO–DI water containers. Salinity is of the aquarium water is kept at about 35 ppt measured with refractometer.
Activated carbon (0.5 l, changed once a month) is used continually in passive circulation. 120 l water change is done every week with RO-DI water using mainly Tropic Marin Pro-Reef or hw Meersalz Professional. Some trace elements, mainly iron, strontium and Tropic Marin Lugol's solution are added irregularly. Fish are fed usually once every day with small amount of frozen (mainly artemia and mysis mixed with small amount of Cyclop- eeze) or flake/granular food.
Over 12 years of reef keeping, I have kept tanks run with pure Berlin system, Jaubert's plenum plus skimmer, DSB plus skimmer with and without algae refugium, and with ZEOvit system. All systems have maintained healthy corals and good growth in my hands. Some systems have worked better in some points, but also in every system there has been some negative aspects. At the end of July 2005 I cut down many of the overgrown corals and removed some live rock and started to experiment with skimmerless setup. I also sold my calcium and kalkwasser reactors and started to use Balling method. The simpleReef was started. My experiences have been very positive. The setup is now very plain and natural, and it needs only a little maintenance. Corals and fishes look just magnificent. I will never go back to that classical high tech setup I used to have. I recommend this setup to all, to both beginners and to experts.