So Valentines Day 2017 my husband says “you have always wanted one of these, how about it for Valentines Day?” I am thinking ok, cool, I can put it in my office, a small distraction for a busy lady, I worked from home, yes that it past tense, another story another time, so we go to the local pet store, not Petco, an independently owned, been there for 40 some years, aquarium store. We tell them we have never had one and would like to have a coral aquarium with a couple of fish. So we end up buying this tall aquarium, stand, live rock and instructions on how to get started, have to have water right, stable tank before you add anything to it. And I will have to say when the lights are off you can take a red light flash light and see the creepy things that come out of the live rocks, all kinds of bristle worms, bug type water creature, did this the other night and there was a worm about half the size in diameter as a pencil that I could only see the first 4″ of winding around the floor of the tank….eek!!!
Anyway, so we have the rocks in the water, tank setup done, chemicals look good, now what do we want to put in the tank? Me, I want fish, so we start with 2 clowns, one orange one black, my husband wants coral so we start buying, a never ending story, of baby corals that are started on a plug, you put the plug into a rack that is held by magnets on the side of the tank, until they are big enough to be moved onto a rock or on the floor of the tank.
Now I have to stop right here. Problem number 1 – we bought a tall tank, the fish dude did not say this will be a bitch for both of you to have because neither one of you is 6’8″ with arms that extend 6 feet. You have to be able to put you arm in the tank to the bottom and pick up, move or place something on the bottom. Well I am shrinking as it is at about 5’4″ and my husband is 5’10” so neither one of us can reach into the bottom of the tank.
So we start the hunt for fish tank gadgets, grabbers that are 3 feet long, tongs of some sort, something small to feed shrimp or krill to anemones. We have a bucket full of stuff now and nothing is perfect but we are getting by.
So here we are, tank with 2 fish and some rocks, about $600, now what….
Expensive hobby, did I say it costs a lot and there is no guarantee that anything you put in the tank will live…. so we start buying coral, a couple pieces here and there, still just my 2 fish, but nobody tells me that there are not many fish that you can have in a tank with corals, or fish that are aggressive and kill other fish, for sport! So many unknowns with this awesome hobby…..
This is a sponge, the blue green thing in the middle, doesn’t do anything but lay there, pretty in white and blue light
This is Superman, they are polyps, really pretty in the blue light, bright and vibrant, they just grow babies.
I don’t remember what this one was called, was meaning yes, we lost this coral in a power outage. Some are more fragile than others.
This is a feather duster, we had more than one of these, lost one in the power outage, the last one we had decided to come out of the protective covering and we couldn’t get him back in, dead, Poof, another one bites the dust!
The orange one, according to our nearby aquarium store, and yes we have found a few more, just have to do a road trip to get there, is a rare, rare, rare, rare, did I mention rare sponge. It is hard to see the rock that it is on but it has the shape of the cross on it, I think that was why I was so drawn to it, paid wayyyy to much for it for it to die on us. And the pretty green tips up on the top are another one that we lost. You will notice that most of the corals are green, or greenish color, in the blue lights they are more vibrant.
Ok so before I go any further I need to make a few comments. We had the tank up and running, had purchased many corals and was ready to enjoy this aquarium in my office when I was fired from my job. My health has been an issue since 2012, fibro, Osteoarthritis, degenerative disc disease, restless leg syndrome, carpal tunnel mild in left, moderate in right, IBS, CPS, obviously, so I knew I was having problems with memory retention, caught lots of mistakes and worked lots of hours overtime trying to keep up, little did I know how bad it was…. so now I am not working and my expensive hobby is not really as much fun as it used to be. But we still go to the fish store, we have 3 within 50 miles of home, dream, beg for discounts and take anything we can get for free.
So with that out of the way, we still have some of our original corals, our 2 clowns, my black one “retard” is twice the size as the orange one, my husband says I shouldn’t call it “retard” but it is a goofy fish, that eats out of my hand, tries to eat all the shrimp that I am trying to feed to anemones and dun-kin. Retard is a pig, but getting really big which is way cool.
So here are more pics, Kat’s aquarium Inside the Kat House
Small giveaway, lost this one in power outage
One of those really expensive, really rare kind that we paid too much for and it died in cold water that wasn’t circulating.
This is some green grass that we purchased in the beginning and it is still alive today!
White sand starfish. We bought this guy pretty early on. As time went on it started losing legs, not sure if someone was eating it or another problem. We gave it to someone else to enjoy before it died.
This is a Kenyon tree that moves around in the current. Lost this one too….
Crabby, we have had at least 5 of these, I honestly can’t tell you what happens to them but I can tell you that we keep replacing them.
This was a different feather duster. We only bought 2 before we decided that they weren’t “hardy enough” for us.
Small yellow tree, not with us anymore….
So this is a shelf that has numerous coral starters on it. The one in front is our dunkin. Today I believe there are 6 of them on this one stalk. It loves where it is.
Shelf showing everything on it.
These are the easiest ones to grow, very hardy and they come in different colors, same thing different color behind them.
These are sponges. They are pretty hardy and cool.
Here are some anemones. We were given this rock with these 2 on it by a guy at Petco. We thought they were pretty cool the first week, the second week we had 4 anemones, the week after that we had another one and we decided we better find a new home before our whole tank was full of them. One of the aquarium stores took them off of our hands glady, that baby making rock was a money maker for them, gave us a store credit and we were happy to let them go.
Six stripe wrasse
The coral behind retard has become the other clowns place to hang out. In the back is the green grass again, it has almost completely covered that rock now.
Nest for the orange clown, I don’t know why I haven’t named the orange one….have to think about that…
Pretty clam, dead clam….
I was told that the black clowns grow faster and get bigger than any of the other colors.
Supermen in blue light
Trying to feed anemones…