Reef tanks

Article by Rotem Gavish

Reef tanks are usually kept at a temperature between 25 and 27 °C (75-80 ºF).

Reef tanks can be beautiful and exotic and for some a piece of nature.

The primary filtration for reef aquariums usually

comes from the use of large amounts of live rock which come from

various rubble zones around existing reefs.

Researchers are finding that saltwater fish aquariums have therapeutic health benefits.

The tanks are usually constructed from either glass or acrylic. With advances in modern aquariums

it’s recently became possible to have a piece of coral reef at home and enjoy it in the privacy of your

living room without getting wet with saltwater aquarium. A reef aquarium or reef tank is an aquarium

containing live corals and other animals associated with coral reefs. Unlike the marine aquarium,

the main purpose of which is to house various types of fish, the true stars of the reef tank are the

coral and other invertebrates. As the aquariums we maintain contain more and more diverse animal life,

the need for more complete additives becomes more of a necessity, and the make-up of these additives

has to be more geared to the new type of aquariums, in order to satisfy the requirements of all the

animal life we now keep. Water movement is important in the reef aquarium with different types of

coral requiring different flow rates. Building water momentum using a gyre is an efficient method to

increase flow, thus benefiting coral respiration and photosynthesis. Some corals such as the

Mushroom Coral and Coral Polyps require very little light to thrive – conversely, LPS coral such as

Brain coral, Bubble Coral, Elegance Coral, Cup Coral, Torch Coral, and Trumpet Coral require moderate

amounts of light, and Small Polyp Stony Corals (SPS) such as Acropora Coral, Montipora, Porites,

Stylopora and pocillopora require high intensity lighting. Stony corals, which are defined by their

calcerous calcium carbonate skeletons (CaCO3), are the focus of many advanced reef keepers.

These corals require additional attention to water chemistry, especially maintenance of stable and

optimal calcium, carbonate, and pH levels. A reef aquarium requires appropriately intense lighting,

turbulent water movement, and more stable water chemistry than fish-only marine aquaria.

Nano reefs are very commonly sold as complete kits which contain the tank, stand,

power compact T5, T8, PL lamps or Metal Halide lighting, protein skimmer, UV sterilizer, 3 or

more stage filtration, a heater and a water pump or power head. However, many Nano reef

keepers decide to upgrade their aquariums with better quality equipment such as a more powerful

protein skimmer or lighting. These tiny tanks require even more diligence with regard to water

changes and attention to water chemistry because the small water volume provides little room for error.

Care must be exercised when stocking these tiny tanks because too many inhabitants can easily

overload the tank’s ability to process wastes effectively.

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Rotem Gavish is a fish expert. Dedicating his life to this beautiful hobby, his expertise is in all related to aquarium world such as fish, plants and invertebrates. Rotem established his site with the vision of sharing tips and free information.