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By admin - Posted Oct 26, 2009 09:10 PM

Reef tank under the microscope

A hobbyist decided to record the microscopic life swimming in a drop of reef aquarium water (now that's our type of reefkeeper!). The footage does not disappoint. Captive seawater is teeming with life. The next time you accidentally get tank water in your mouth, think about this video. You're welcome.

"Plantapalooza" by the Coral Restoration Foundation

Coral Restoration Foundation celebrated World Oceans Day (June 9) by staging their first "Plantapalooza." CRF transplated 1,600 staghorn Acroporas, their most single-day coral planting ever. It's awesome to see coral reef restoration in full effect - especially from an organization with roots in the reefkeeping hobby.

The diversity of reef life is mind-blowing

The diversity of reef life is mind-blowing

Two male sand divers puff up for each other.

When you walk into good fish store looking for the next addition to your reef tank, you may be overwhelmed with the selection of livestock. But we really only see a fraction of the plants and animals that populate the world's reef. Ned and Anna DeLoach of blennywatcher.com show us how incredibly beautiful and weird reef life can be.

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New study uncovers why some threatened corals swap 'algae' partners

New study uncovers why some threatened corals swap 'algae' partners

A new research study shows why threatened Caribbean star corals sometimes swap partners to help them recover from bleaching events. Photo by Rivah Winter

A new research study showed why threatened Caribbean star corals sometimes swap partners to help them recover from bleaching events. The findings are important to understand the fate of coral reefs as ocean waters warm due to climate change.

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Advanced Aquarist Wallpaper: Highlighter

Is there a more iconic symbiotic relationship than an anemone hosting clownfish? Mitchell Brown photographs a bright orange percula clownfish snug as a bug in her neon green Heteractis magnifica anemone.

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Have you hugged your shark today?

A video is going viral of a gorgeous leopard shark who is seemingly enjoying hugs and tickles from its aquarium caretaker.

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Box jellyfish fish for their food

The first feeding study of the Irukandji box jellyfish has found that they actively fish. They attract larval fish by twitching their extended tentacles, highlighting their nematocyst clusters (stinging structures) and using them as lures.

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Bigger brains help female fish evade predators but doesn't help males

Bigger brains help female fish evade predators but doesn't help males

Male guppies are flashy, but it comes at a price. Photo by 'maxxum3'

A study published last month in the journal Ecology Letters found that females with bigger brains were 13.5% better able to avoid being eaten, but males with bigger brains did not share the same advantage.

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The (Greek) god of (pencil) wrasses

The (Greek) god of (pencil) wrasses

Pseudojuloides zeus. (J. Hale)

Say hello to Pseudojuloides zeus, the newest described wrasse. The species is named after the Greek god, Zeus because of the fish's distinctive electric blue zig-zag pigmentation on its sides, which resemble lightning bolts.

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Perhaps the world's most elegant coffee table aquarium

Perhaps the world's most elegant coffee table aquarium

MAIAO by Aquaniman

French aquarium fabricator Aquaniman has released the MAIAO coffee table aquarium, an all (curved) glass frameless design. Its clean and unobstructed sight-lines makes this one of the sleekest coffee table aquariums we've seen.

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Researchers find diatoms and bacteria are BFFs

Researchers find diatoms and bacteria are BFFs

Diatoms are single-celled algae that take many intricate shapes. The Pseudo-nitzschia multiseries used in the study are simple rods that carry out photosynthesis throughout the world’s oceans.California Academy of Sciences / Flickr

The ocean is a complex symphony of life. We are only beginning to understand the amazing interactions between different organisms, especially at the microscopic level. These "micro-interactions" can shape entire ecosystems. Such is the case with diatoms and bacteria.

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A contender for this year's "Lousy Idea" Award

Many of us have won goldfish at carnivals, and we've all played arcade claw/crane games (AKA UFO Catcher in Japan). Well, the Japanese have combined the two concepts with an arcade claw game where the prize is - get this - a live green spotted pufferfish.

So yeah ... this exists.

Juvenile Midori pufferfish (Tetraodon nigroviridis) are housed in small, sealed cups waiting for players to "catch" them. We can only hope that, at the very least, the fish are fed and given fresh water changes every day.

Why anyone would gamble money hoping to win cheap fish you can purchase at just about any LFS is beyond us.  Why anyone would think it's a good idea to make an arcade game that doubles as a public fish torture device is even more puzzling.  Yet, according to RocketNews24, this game is the next arcade fad in Japan.

It makes matters worse that Midori pufferfish aren't exactly ideal community fish for novices.  At least goldfish are dummy proof.

This is why we can't have nice things. Undecided

Really giant clams

The entire genus Tridacna is commonly referred to as giant clams, but most clams we see in the hobby (T.maxima, T.crocea, and T.deresa) are less than 12 inches, if even 4 inches. It's T.gigas that is the real champ of the Tridacnids.

Gigas clams can achieve over 48" (120cm) in length and weigh more than 600lbs (270kg).  Clams this massive act like little complete reef structures of their own, supporting entire mini ecosystems.  Isolated T.gigas have been found in the middle of otherwise barren sandy bottoms serving as "islands" for corals to anchor on their shells and recruitment sites for fish and invertebrates.  A reef aquascape designed around a giant T.gigas would make an unique and lovely exhibit.

Few aquarists have seen mature T.gigas.  Even the "big" specimens that sometimes enter our hobby are dwarfs compared to some of the 100+ year old behemoths found in the wild.  As a point of reference, Waikiki Aquarium's famous "Gigas-77" T.gigas is only a svelte 170lbs.  Or take a look at the video below of two monsters found on the Great Barrier Reef (2012).  Both clams have mature, beautiful Acroporids growing on their shells.

To learn more about Tridacna gigas, read James Fatherree's Advanced Aquarist article.

And no, these monsters don't trap nor eat people.

Natural zebrafish outcompete Glofish for mates

Natural zebrafish outcompete Glofish for mates

Glofish are genetically modified fish with a range of fluorescent pigmentation. Photo courtesy of Carolina Biological Supply Company

Researchers found that wild male zebrafish consistently beat out genetically modified Glofish for potential mates. Females wanted to mate with Glofish males, but wild males prevented it. Evolution is usually thought of in terms of "survival of the fittest, but the study shows that mating success is actually a stronger driving force.

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Fish born in larger groups develop more social skills and a different brain structure

Fish born in larger groups develop more social skills and a different brain structure

Neolamprologus pulcher (N. Pulcher) breed of cichlid fish used in the study Credit: Dario Josi

Fishkeepers have observed that captive-bred fish tend to be more sociable and less aggressive than their wild counterparts. A new research provides a possible explanation why.

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