Amazing coral photos

Kevin took his fancy lens to take pictures of the new dude, who’s still seeming happy, I’m hoping that we can send him to the main tank over the weekend, although it’s TBD if our tank cover will arrive in time. Apparently, fish are most likely to jump out in their first few days in a new tank. We will not be covering the main tank (ugly, less light for corals), but we are worried about him — he seems pretty content to perch and eat now, but you never know once there are other fish in the picture. So we’ll cover for the first week or so.

My photos were decent of his form and body, but Kevin really captured his character. He’s a funny little fish, he makes us laugh.



When he finds a spot to perch, he stays there for several minutes, so this isn’t a case of Kevin waiting patiently for his “shot”. The fish is just a quirky, amusing little dude and it’s fun to see what he’ll decide to do next.

After the fish photos, Kevin went to the main tank, and some of the coral photos he got were utterly spectacular. A lot of the detail you can’t actually see when you’re looking at the tank with your eyes, so to see the close-up on the computer screen is lovely and amazing.

The “teal” staghorn acro is pretty much just a vivid blue now. We had a pump failure in the late spring while we were on the east coast (on the plus side, nothing overflowed in the house or garage; on the minus side, the tank got very cold for a day). We were lucky, this staghorn coral was our only casualty. The dark part is where it died back, but as you can see, there are two parts still alive. It hasn’t shown much growth, though, we’ll love to figure out what to do with it. (My default assumption would be more light, but other corals at the same height or lower in the tank, ie less light, are thriving. Mysterious. Stress?)

You can see the very small flower-like mouths, and if you click for the bigger photo, you can see the amazing maze-like pattern on the rest of the coral — this pattern is definitely not visible to the naked eye. How cool.

The “strawberry lemonade” birds-nest coral. This one has been super tippy (sometimes it’s hard to get a good bond between the corals and the rocks, we use non-toxic superglue, but you apply it underwater and the coral spits out a protective slime when you handle it, so it’s tricky to get a great bond. I think the birds nest clashes with the rose coral behind it, but would work really well to unify the bubblegum pink pocillopora and the avocado green staghorn acro, so we’re going to try moving it over there.

Here’s the pocillopora, with a bit of the avocado acro peeping up behind it. We’ll need to get pictures of the avocado one, it’s covered in new growth points and so happy in its spot.

A really pretty closeup of a florescent green monti plate coral. This is probably the brightest thing in our tank. It’s so vivid. I love the bumps, and really hope it grows, these can be spectacular. The light/white-green at the edges is a good sign, that’s what new growth looks like.

Our orange eye acan, with a few feeding tentacles out (in the border between the pink and the orange). These get longer when there’s food in the tank or when we feed the fish.

Amazing green zoos — these guys are still there, but in stasis. They haven’t grown or shrunk appreciably in the last half year. Maybe the light is too high? Or flow is too low? Kind of a mystery.

Brown and blue zoos are marginally happier, but also haven’t taken off. Again, light? I’m tempted to move these guys somewhere lower and more sheltered, and then if they do well with that switch, also move the amazing green dudes.

The tang, checking things out.

Xenia, pulsing madly.

Click.

Clack.

The lime green acropora is happy, happy. The pinkish-white dimpled nubs at the ends are new growth, and this one just keeps going.


Again, definitely click this one to see the bigger view of the florescent green mouths and the fascinating brown speckled dot pattern on the rest. I can’t see the speckles in real life, you seem to need a camera.


Click, wriggling like the best of the clownfish.

This textured purple mushroom is tucked deep in a corner at the back of the tank, and is a little over an inch wide.

Dark green sponge on the left, fan on the right. Sponges mostly grow where flow is very low, so this one is lovely but I worry about him.

The cleaner shrimp has taken to riding the oscillating blower, back and forth, back and forth. We are amused.

The “fizzy green mushrooms” are still effervescent.


And the rose cluster acro is going strong. The bluish-white stubs at the end of the branches are new growth in the last month or so.

Click for big on this photo — not only can you see the darker fronds, but there’s a pale/translucent projection — a feeding tube? a mouth? it’s very, very neat.

We had to majorly up our dose of kalkwasser… Kevin will correct me, maybe it’s really a different system/reactor, I’m fuzzy on this, but effectively, corals need lots of calcium to grow, and this helps provide it. There are complications with making sure everything’s buffered appropriately, but after a long hiatus, we’re testing the water and seeing how we’re doing.

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