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300 Gallon Reef Overhaul Part 4 – 20 Colonies Gone – Update

By Fish of Hex on

Travis: Hey, what's up everyone. Welcome back to FishOfHex. My name is Travis. Well, today is the very first video of the 300-gallon after doing the complete overhaul and removing over 20 colonies from the setup. As you can see, it looks the same. I'm just kidding, this is an old video from January. This is what the reef tank looks like right now. Yes, definitely some big changes. In this video, I'm going to go through each rock structure, talk about everything that I did with the tank, whatever move, the reason behind it.

We're going to talk about some of the things I ran into during the process that forced me to remove a lot more coral than I anticipated. Then, towards the end of the video, you guys will see the whole time-lapse of removing the coral from the middle right rock structure, which was a huge pain, but it's finally done. Let's go ahead and get started.

Now, let's go and look at the left rock structure first. As you can see, there's not really much has changed, unless you were keen or looking in or looking at specific colonies closely. I ended up removing the bird's nest that was right here underneath this poison ivy. It was getting shaded out, plus, it got damaged during the whole drumlin process, and we'll talk about that a little bit later, but yes, I removed a colony that was here, pretty big bird's nest.

I removed the exact same colony that was actually over here underneath some of these acros, and then, I went ahead and shaved off some of the dead red planet that was right here.

It's still a little bit left, but I got the majority of it out. The reason why I removed both of those, again, was because of the shaving from the Dremel tool. I had to go through the rock structures and use a Dremel tool, like I did previously with other colonies to get them off the rock structure.

There was just a huge problem with that, and I finally did it, went through and it took days and days and days, but I finally got through and did it, but the problem was there was so much in the water column, even with bubble scrubbing that a lot of the SPS were just not liking it. Unfortunately, those two colonies were not doing very well, so I just removed them. It wasn't-- Not really a big deal, it's not something I really wanted to grow in there, but still sucks that I had to remove them.

Yes, that's pretty much it for this rock structure. I did end up losing a head of my torch here. That was because, again, of the Dremel tools, the particles in the water column. The head itself actually started eating some pieces of dead coral that were floating around, and unfortunately, it just killed the head off. I removed that. It's definitely noticeable, but it's okay. It'll be all right.

It'll fill back in eventually. Yes, that's pretty much it for the left rock structure. Let's go move over to the middle left, which has a ton of stuff missing. Now, where to start on this? I removed the WWC, which was the big one that was taking over all this space here, and as I was removing that, I finally could see how much damage that coral was actually doing.

The FishOfHex rainbow shelving acro that was right here was getting completely destroyed by that WWC, and then, some of this green staghorn here with the purple tips, you can see there's a lot of dead pieces, actually, a piece of the WWC still sticking to the core right there, but there's a lot of that that is dead. The reason for that is, that WWC was overgrowing everything, it was crushing every coral on this rock structure.

Not only was it shading everything else below, but everything that was even up here was getting killed off. When I was removing that WWC, I could really see the damage that was going down with all the corals up here, and unfortunately, that FishOfHex rainbow shelving acro was dead. It was dead in a matter of days, once I finally removed that WWC.

Would it have died if I didn't remove the WWC? Eventually, yes. I just sped up the process, unfortunately, and once it started STN-ing, Slow Tissue Necrosis, it was it. It was done. It was done within a couple days. That sucks. It was a big seller on the website, but unfortunately, that's just nature does its thing. You can see here that there's a lot of this Montipora that's missing, you see these blank spots.

That's where I went in there with the Dremel, and actually did a lot of buzzing because it was growing up over onto this crown of glory. It was growing up onto, and a lot of that coral is dying, or going or dead pretty much because of that. I will have to go in there later and finish dremeling that, but I had too much going on with the tank, and just I could only Dremel so much without causing too much stress.

Removed what I could, I will have to get in there and finish that off. I will also have to keep up on that because it's never all going to go away. That's something that I learned, is putting, encrusting Montipora on a rock structure we have Acropora, bad idea, never will do that again. With this tank, I learned a lot of lessons on coral placement, I'll tell you that. I will not be making those mistakes again.

It just sucks that I had to learn the hard way, but that's pretty much how this hobby is, as you guys know. Anyway, I replaced a lot of coral on this rock structure. We got some Orange Passion, WW-- I'm sorry, Orange Passion, Walt Disney. I'll have to get you guys the names of the rest of these. I have them on my desk over there, but I'm not walking over and grab a piece of paper.

They're all higher-end acros and their placement is based on how they grow. We got some shelving acros that are going to shelf over instead of over colonies, they're going to be able to work their way out. I have to worry about it causing issues with shading, and then, yes, we'll see. They're all frags, they're all bitties. See over here, we just have a little bitties and they'll turn into something eventually.

Yes, so I did actually end up replacing some of the WWC here, a little bit in the bottom. You see the yellow tips are just starting to come in, and that's something it did not have when it was way up here. This guy is about to come out of the water too. Overall, this rock structure took a really big hit, not as much as the one to the right-hand side, but overall, I removed a lot of coral from this rock structure.

We'll see what it turns into. We got a lot of new acros that you probably didn't notice. They're all on there, we'll see what it turns into here in the future. Moving over to the middle right rock structure. This one was a huge pain. Where to start? From the top here, my Appleberry had a huge, huge colony of this guy, snapped that off when I was breaking off the Stylophora, and speaking of Stylophora, that used to be all right here.

You guys could even see the $500 Efflos. First time you guys have seen it pretty much ever. That colony is starting to actually grow really well. Now that it's getting some space and it's not touching the Stylophora anymore. Yes, The Stylo was a huge pain. The skeletal structure was, I don't know, this thick. It was disgustingly huge, and I couldn't get it with bone cutters, you guys will see in the video that I did as much as I could, and I had to go in there with a Dremel.

Took me two days alone to knock out that one colony with a Dremel tool. I ended up breaking off the bottom of this rock structure, and I had to put another piece of rubble in between and superglue it to hold it. It's not completely broken off, but it's really loose. You guys will see that in the video. I put a piece of rock there to bridge the gap to give a little bit more stability. Huge pain, huge pain.

That colony turned into-- Well, I made a whole bunch of colonies throughout the system here to grow out, but there's a ton of frags, been selling a lot of that stuff, and they're pretty decent as well. I got a lot of coral from that one colony, and, again, I replaced it with higher-end acros. We have some shelvings, of course, that are out here. We'll see what that turns into in the future. Six months or so, the tank's going to do its own thing. We'll see what it turns into. Hopefully, it will look pretty good.

Right now, it's just bare. It just maybe not to you guys, but to me it just seems like really bare, not liking it at all. This rock structure actually had a lot of coral on it that I didn't know that were a problem. This, the heck is it? Shit, pink lemonade, that's what this is here. This thing hasn't had polyp extension in about six months, and I couldn't figure out why. It's just starting to get it back, it's because I had an enchilada or something. I'll show you guys what it was.

This LPS, all right. This guy, I forgot it was even here. I had it on the middle the rock structure and the sweeper tentacles were actually touching the base of that pink lemonade, and it just never opened up. It was completely stressed out, wasn't growing, wasn't doing anything. Since I've removed it just a few weeks ago, I've started to get new growth, better polyp extension.

That coral will hopefully come back, but I didn't even realize that that enchilada, I believe that's what it is, was even there for one, and then, it was taking out all the corals through here, was killing off the Setosa, which I removed as well, some green digitata that was getting hit by it, removed that, some red digi. There was a ton of stuff that was getting destroyed by it.

I went in there with the bone cutters, got out what I could, and then, went through with a Dremel tool and got the rest out. Huge mess. You don't even realize what you have in the tank until you start digging in and really looking in there. I have a whole bunch of meteor shower growing up the whole side of this, didn't even know it was there. Same thing over here, a whole bunch of meteor shower, just oblivious that it's even growing in there.

Yes, that's pretty much it for the middle-right rock structure. It sucked. The whole process was awful. The tank, yuck, I just didn't like it. It was a huge pain. I would not do it again. I would if I had to, but no, it was awful. Moving over to the last rock structure here, the right one. I removed the, guess, sea fan that used to be here, replaced it with the pinky in the bear. That was pretty much it for the only acro. That's about it.

I trimmed up some other stuff, put a Lovelli through here, fraggered that from my other system and just did some general trimming. The Wolverines coming in now, that's getting some light with the Cali Tort. There's finally some room cutting back a whole bunch of these gorgonians, selling a lot of that stuff. I'm glad you guys are purchasing it, I can cut it back, make some more room, but yes, what a huge pain.

System overall, is doing pretty good. For the first couple weeks, it was not happy. Major fluctuations in alkalinity, of course, nutrients. I went through and did water changes, removed a lot of the detritus. This is what's left, and I guess we could talk about that and flow and everything. Just was not happy for the longest time. I actually went through and traded some coral for some Jebo Powerheads. Not quite sure what they are. They're O something, OW something, I'm pretty sure. It didn't really cost me. They just traded some coral form, they were slightly used. The guy wanted something else, I was like, "Hey, I'll take them just for the sake of taking them."

I would not buy them new. You guys know that I'm not the biggest fan of Jebo Powerheads. I figured, "Hey, they're practically free, I might as well give them a shot, and see what they do." I moved the Nero 5 to the back wall over here and a Nero 5 over here. I took the other two, and moved them throughout other systems in the fish room, which you guys will see here in a minute.

Yes, trying the powerhead, see if I like them. They are adding additional flow that's about 5, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30, 35, 40, about 40,000 plus gallons per hour in the system. They're all on random flow or reef crest technically, and they're all doing their own thing. It's pretty good. Getting a little bit better polyp extension with the additional flow. I'm going to be trying out some new powerheads here in the future, just because I know that the Jebos are probably going to take a shit.

I'm going to have to try something else. We'll see. Nero 5s are good, they're just not good enough for a tank this size. They do work, but they're just not enough flow for what I'm looking for, or at least not for my particular system. Yes, so when it comes to the rest of the tanks, I guess we can look at everything here. The 40-gallon, doing pretty good as you guys can see. There's definitely some growth.

This is one of my main cutting tanks now. I know I said it's going to let it grow out, but I say a lot of things and I do other stuff, that's the story of my life. I've actually been cutting a lot of coral from this tank to keep up with the cut to order stuff. I cut back a lot of this green digitata, and I'm finally getting some color back on my-- Oh, boy. I didn’t remember what the heck it is. It's the one I just removed from the tank over there, forgive me.

It'll probably come to me while I'm talking about other stuff. If I bleep, blurt out a random name you guys know I'm getting into-- Yes, this is one of my main cutting tanks. I've got a lot of LPS down here that are growing out. A lot of these acros are doing very well, plus the SPS. A ton of Red monti here as you guys can see, or orange to you, but it's definitely red to me.

The tank's doing pretty good, I like it. Yes, that's pretty much to say about that. Of course, we have the healing and WYSIWYG tank. A lot of coralline algae grown in here. It's doing pretty good, quite a few frags healing. I've got to get around to cutting some more, that's for sure. The other grow out tank here, we have a lot of red monti left, of course, all the other SPS that I removed from the 300 doing pretty good.

Then, we have our Acropora grow out and our cut to order frag racks. These are all corals that are cut to order that are healing. They will be going out later this week or next week. Then, I got a couple more racks I got to start filling, I got some more orders that came in, so I've got to take care of those today. Yes, this tank is doing pretty good. One of the best tanks I have.

Even though they're all connected, this is the only one I have no problems. I have no algae issues, no dino issues, no nothing. Perfectly fine, always looks good, always works good. Yes, I just wish all of them are like that. This tank on the other hand gets dino every once in a while, I'm not sure why. It hasn’t popped up in a little bit, but this is the only tank that ever gets dino for whatever reason.

This one is the disaster that it is now. The other two seem to be fine, no dino, no other problems. Yes, that is the update on the 300-gallon. I know I rambled for a while, what are we like 13, 14 minutes in on this part? It is what it is. I guess [chuckles] I can leave it at that, it is what it is. It's definitely a big change, and the reason why I did it was because I needed more room.

I needed to put corals in the tank that I really liked. I want to just Acropora, even though there is a couple of easy SPS in here. I just needed it to look and be something else, and that's how we progress in the hobby. Plus Big Bertha here, she loves it. She has a ton of swimming room. There was definitely some Tang aggression when I started moving the colonies.

A little bit territorial issues between Big Blue here and Zayzay, the sailfin, but yes, that was about it. A little bit aggression, Big Bertha has got more swimming room, and she's still making me frags every day though. It is what it is. That's about it guys, I'm done rambling. Hopefully, you enjoy the rest of the video, where you guys can see the time-lapse of me cutting down this rock structure. That's about it. I'll see you guys later, peace.

About Fish of Hex

Travis’ main reef display tank featuring many small-polyp stony coral (SPS) is a 300-gallon custom glass aquarium setting on a welded iron stand, both from Custom Aquariums.

"Here you will find everything you need to know to be successful in the saltwater aquarium hobby. I have several video series such as "Beginner Guide to Saltwater Aquariums", "300 Gallon Build" and "How to & Diy". I will teach you how to avoid common mistakes and prevent tank disasters. With thirteen years of experience in the hobby, I plan on sharing all of it with my subscribers. I take great pride in helping others and seeing their tanks grow into amazing works of art makes the time I put into making these videos worth it. Follow me and you will have an amazing reef tank in no time!"

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