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Red Slime Algae Cyanobacteria

What are Red Slime Algae? Red Slime Algae is the common name for an aquarium troublemaker otherwise known as red cyanobacteria. Since the term cyanobacteria sounds like either a bizarre Crayola Crayon color or the bacterial strain in a Michael Crichton novel (how’s that for a dated reference), the more popular term red slime algae tends to fit quite well. Red slime …

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How to dose kalkwasser in a reef tank saltwater aquarium

What is kalkwasser? Kalkwasser is the German word for calcium hydroxide, a relatively inexpensive reef tank additive that will help you keep your calcium and pH levels nice and high in your tank. For some reason, the term kalkwasser has become part of the mainstream vernacular in the saltwater aquarium hobby. Kalkwasser, or calcium hydroxide, is a mainstay in the …

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Aiptasia: Proven Pest or Unjustly Persecuted?

Last night, I performed a little surgery in my reef tank to eradicate a notorious pest in the saltwater aquarium world–I found the dreaded aiptasia anemone (sometimes spelled aptasia on forums), on a coral I recently purchased. After carefully inspecting the subject (a piece of live rock with mushroom corals on it) to look for areas that would complicate the …

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What is in the skimmate produced by a protein skimmer?

What is in the skimmate produced by a protein skimmer? It certainly isn’t sugar and spice and everything nice. The ooey-gooey gunk inside the collection cup of my protein skimmer is a nasty, brown sludge. From a visual standpoint, there isn’t a single characteristic of that mess that seems like it belongs in my tank. But I got to wondering…what …