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Myka
05-18-2017, 02:49 PM
I found these articles on Reef2Reef, and figured they were quite interesting.

I found most notable in the entire article is the NO3 level in ALL of the tanks quite high, though PO4 very low. Also, most of them add very little in the way of additives. No magic bullets, just stability. :D The whole "additive bandwagon" is a different style of reef keeping. It's for the tinkerers.

Anyway, check it out yourself...

https://www.reef2reef.com/ams/tank-parameters-of-some-masters.263/

https://www.reef2reef.com/threads/following-the-masters-part-two.305935/

Animal-Chin
05-18-2017, 03:40 PM
Very cool article. Its funny, I've been running a super low nutrient tank for almost a year now where my nitrates are about 2 and even though I have almost no algae of any kind left in the tank I do feel my coral have suffered. I know the trend and the advice on most sites in the last few years have been to reduce nitrates to almost 0 but I'm thinking its not really great for your coral.

I'm slowly removing a spoon full of biopellets a day until my reactor is empty and I'm going back to my old refugium that would keep my nitrates around 5-10 and see if my coral react better. My coral used to grow like weeds and have awesome color when I had some nitrate in the water.

Myka
05-18-2017, 03:48 PM
Very cool article. Its funny, I've been running a super low nutrient tank for almost a year now where my nitrates are about 2 and even though I have almost no algae of any kind left in the tank I do feel my coral have suffered. I know the trend and the advice on most sites in the last few years have been to reduce nitrates to almost 0 but I'm thinking its not really great for your coral.

I'm slowly removing a spoon full of biopellets a day until my reactor is empty and I'm going back to my old refugium that would keep my nitrates around 5-10 and see if my coral react better. My coral used to grow like weeds and have awesome color when I had some nitrate in the water.

I'm on the same page as you. My tank has been unintentionally ULNS since day one pretty much, there were peeks of hope at times when my fish load was decent enough to hold some measurable nutrients until I removed the fish to treat Ich, and then only put a few back in. I've been adding Pohl's Xtra for months and recently KNO3 trying to prevent my Acros from dying from lack of nutrients, but having trouble since I also don't have PO4. Now I'm scrambling to get some fish in there because I've had enough of this crap, but I'm picky with fish, and this is frustrating! :lol: First world problems... :( Fish load is so important - you need the right amount, and not just any fish - you need fish that do a job so you can keep low-nutrient algae at bay (like Bubble Algae). I'm starting to think that just having a good number of fish that swim around pecking at the rock disturbing things makes a world of difference. FISH - magic ingredient!

corallivore
05-18-2017, 04:35 PM
Careful. Some of the tinkerers take offence to the more laid back approach. I firmly believe you can build a beautiful system that is nearly self sustaining outside of the odd water change. I just did my first w/c in three months...I can leave it for weeks without feeding it (only 3 fish, copious amounts of pods and other fauna and the right inverts to stir things up). I keep sps and lps and zoas. I'll admit, I've added some corals that can't handle my system so there has been some trial and error. I also think my magic bullet is a sea hare and I've always found the more my hands are in a tank, the more things go wrong. It's adverse to what an LFS will tell you but it works for me. I've had saltwater tanks since 2001 and been using this methodology for the last 5 or 6 years. Mostly because I still love the hobby but the constant pouring of money and especially time got old. So now it's come to this. I'm not saying this is the best way. Only that it works.

Myka
05-19-2017, 04:36 PM
Yeah, there are lots of methods that do little to no water changes. It all depends on what your expectations are.

Dearth
05-19-2017, 05:20 PM
Yeah, there are lots of methods that do little to no water changes. It all depends on what your expectations are.

Very true and well put

I've made no secret that I do a monthly water change and that I rarely test my water but I also did my homework per se I have purposely went with relatively easy corals to keep and hardy fish. My tank is a softie tank as I know I am not setup to take difficult coral or high maintenance fish.

The caveat to all the above is to do your homework and research endlessly because it is very easy to kill a tank with kindness or have a revolving door of dead coral and fish and algae up the yin yang.

It is easy to over tinker with your tank and not tinker enough and I know there are those that are annoyed to no end with me because I am laid back about water changes and maintenance but then again I have a well established tank what I do works for me and if it bothers them it's their problem not mine.

corallivore
05-19-2017, 05:31 PM
I sometimes feel like early on, the hobby tricked me a bit.

The more $ you spend, the more pressure you are under to keep it all going.

There was a time, before mortgages and property taxes, that I enjoyed going out and spending the money, learning about all the new developments and technologies but the reality of life has moved the tank down my list of fiscal priorities.

I would definitely say I've had more impressive tanks in the past when I was a lot more involved but my rsm250 now is the best I've had as far as value in vs value out.

Maybe should start a thread for those of us who appreciate low maintenance systems to show off and compare.

Dearth
05-19-2017, 05:45 PM
I think the mislead comes from when a new comer or inexperienced reefer hears or reads about a low maintenance system and that xx person runs xx parameters and does this or doesn't do that will not understand that in order to get where that person's tank is that person spent likely a couple of years getting their tank to that point hell mine took just over 2 years to get where I was happy with it and another year of fine tuning.

Unfortunately I think that is the misperceptions that newcomers don't hear or read about the trial and error and the time it took to get that system to where it was happy and might think that in a year or less they will have this awesome system. If that were only the case.....

corallivore
05-19-2017, 06:15 PM
I sort of feel the opposite.

This hobby is made out to be WAY harder than it actually is.

Like every tank is supposed to be an ultra low nutrient sps quality system.

You don't HAVE to do a lot of the things that are marketed to reefers, especially new reefers.

I sort of feel like there is this kind of ill placed pride that comes from spending so much, testing like crazy and constantly tweaking equipment and parameters that many reefers are imbued with.

I think for some, that pride is really what the hobby is about...or at least that what it becomes about.

I have been really taken aback by how seemingly offended some reefers get at the idea that you can do just as well with less.

There is definitely some diminishing returns on the amount of time and money you put into a tank.

That being said, I wouldn't put any Tyree or reef raft or any but a few high end corals in my tank because I know they wouldn't last and if your end goal is to be able to keep the rarest or coral, especially with SPS, you are definitely committed to being more involved and having more equipment.

Frogger
05-19-2017, 06:50 PM
It was this article that partly led me to try to raise my nitrates. Be careful when trying to raise your nitrates artificially because it can cause your phosphates to plummet which can lead to catastrophic results. You can go from poor colors (low nitrates) to stressed corals (dieback)

Most of these masters have had their tanks running for a long time and have a high bioload, they manage the algae problems with using a lot of algae eating animals, manual removal and by covering every inch of space with corals therefore not giving the algae a chance to take a strong foothold.

DKoKoMan
05-23-2017, 05:50 AM
Good read. I have some take aways to implement on my tank moving forward.