This is Part #19 in a series of blog posts about my 225 gallon peninsula tank build.
Over the years I have not used coral food and amino acids too often with my reef tanks. I did use frozen Cyclopeeze and Reef Nutrition’s Oyster Feast and Roti Feast pretty consistently with my old 225 gallon tank. But I have only used Oyster Feast sparingly with my recent tanks.
Today I tend to get cyano or some other type of undesirable algae like dinoflagelletes when I dose coral food. Usually, I will start using the food when my nutrients bottom out.
I tend to have a heavy hand with food to drive nutrients up and I believe that creates an in-balance in the system, causing the algae outbreaks. Nothing good happens in this hobby when something is done too quickly or in excess.
Feeding the Fish
As for fish food, I usually feed mysis and brine shrimp cubes, pellets as well as nori. My tangs need their veggies and just love nori. My goal is to feed the fish four times per day. I have Anthias and they need to be fed often.
I have also experimented with my own coral and fish food. Ingredients include shrimp, scallops, nori, clams, mussels, silver sides, blood worms, mysis and brine shrimp. I also add in some Vitachem, spirulina powder, garlic and some Reef-Roids.
Vitachem addresses nutritional deficiencies in marine fish and invertebrates. Garlic helps finicky fish eat and the spirulina powder is supposed to be good for fish, corals and invertebrates since it contains amino acids, vitamins and minerals.
Personally, I have not noticed better color or growth with my corals after using aminos or coral food. They seem to do pretty well without that stuff but I know others have seen positive results. Perhaps I will continue to experiment.
For supplements I dose nitrates and phosphates when those elements start to bottom out. I like to keep nitrates in the 2.5 to 5 ppm range and phosphates between .03 to .07 ppm. When using chaeto I dose an iron supplement to promote its growth.
I rely on water changes to replenish trace elements. I do 10% weekly water changes using Instant Ocean salt. In the past I have used Tropic Marin Pro as well as ESV’s salt. Both have worked well but they are pricier versus Instant Ocean. IO does have a dirty residue but it does the job.
If you would like some help with a new tank build, including help designing a custom aquarium, or help re-configuring your current setup then you can visit this page for more information. And if you are looking to add some equipment, I do sell GHL, Pax Bellum, Reef Octopus Calcium and Kalk Reactors and Royal Exclusiv products, including Dreamboxes, which is the equipment I use and recommend. I also sell Reef Brite metal halide and LED fixtures as well as Maxspect & IceCap Gyres.
As for additional insights and information, please explore my many other reef tank and SPS related articles as well as my YouTube channel. For an even deeper dive into reef tank care you can check out my Reef Keeping Master Class. This online course is an immersive and one of a kind educational tool designed to help reef aquarium hobbyists build and maintain a beautiful SPS reef tank. The course is a series of video presentations with some supplemental video from my YouTube channel. There are also quizzes to help students retain and understand the information presented in the course.
Need some frags…..I can help with that as well 🙂 Please visit my SPS Frag store to see what is available.