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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The club's board is in the planning phase for next year's season of events. We're looking for ideas from you. Let's turn this thread into an open forum where you can have your voice heard regarding next year's season. Are there any topics you would like focused on at a meeting? Any particular guest speakers you'd be interested in seeing? Any events you'd like the club to host? Let's hear it folks. This is YOUR club, what do you want it to be???

Paul M.
 

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idea

Maybe we could choose a coral species to talk about at the meeting (we could use this forum to vote on the species to talk about). Limit the talk to that species. Perhaps a member that has succesfully kept that species, or a guest speaker that knows the species well, could present some husbandry tips, requirements, tank companions, reproduction (fragging), etc.

This could also be used for reef-friendly fish. That's a whole nother meeting though :D .

My 2 cents worth.
-Reed
 

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RE: Direction

Well, I thought that the club started moving in a great direction last year. Despite not being able to make it to many meetings (two) and getting lost on the way to Paul's house (sheesh) for the sand swap, I liked the increased focus on speakers and club interaction to help out the club over-all.

There are some fantastic tanks up in this area, and there are a lot of people trying to set up systems who don't have the $ or know-how to do it right.

I've only been here for 2 1/2 years, but I can't seem to find a place that sells live sand that has more than bacteria and a few micro-invertebrates in it. I went to buy sand at one place and they were using the live sand tank to hold an employees large mantis shrimp. (Mantis shrimp eat all the critters that make live sand "live." In that arena, an expanded sand swap is one way to help out everybody without costing anybody a whole lot of money. Here's one possible way to do it. Similar to the way we've don't it before, we collect sand from everybody in the group who wants to participate. Then we add as much additional life to it as possible by getting stuff from Inland, Premium's rock sludge, IPSF, etc. As long as nobody buys or has those carnivorous mini-stars*, this should be great. Since large and diverse detrivore orders can quickly get into the $200-$300 range (been there, done that) individuals aren't as likely to buy as much diversity or buy at all. As a group, even if only 10 people want to drop the cash, we're only out $20-$30 each for a great assortment of life. Then we do as before and feed the sand DT's and golden pearls, etc. to get the ridiculously expensive crawly things to do what they do best, and after three months or so we split it up again. I'd prefer to see this done in a holding tank connected to an actual system because it seems to spur faster reproduction of the organisms. Maybe there's some magical ingredient in fish poop or something. Paul, this could be accomplished in your system if you just dumped in tank water every once in a while after stirring up any detritus in your main tank.

So, if you've made it this far, you're probably wondering "Who the hell is this guy, and why won't he shut up?!" or "I've never seen this guy in my life at an actual meeting, and why won't he shut up?!" So, I'll promptly shut up. Well, except to say that I've spent the last five years trying out different tank set-ups from skimmerless, DSB, mangrove, different types of filters, etc. without ever setting up a full-blown reef tank. I figured that with a limited amount of $ and a lot of patience and research I'd eventually get to the point where the $ and knowledge would get me to the point of setting up the 300-500 gallon monster. However, with a new house, a car accident this year, and a baby on the way, I've resigned myself to not setting up the mega-system or even a nice 55gallon system for a few years. The hardest thing I've done in a long time was to take down my "research" tank and retrofit it for a FOWLR tank. I'm doing all the electrical work to create a more stable environment so I didn't cringe whenever I turned on a powertool in the garage and to get some GFCI protection on the tanks. I'll be hopefully moving the tank in a few weeks into a semi-permanent display location, and getting some fish eventually. I knew I kept that wet-dry for a reason! ;) It's funny, because I've always loved my "reef" research tank, but anybody else looks in and says "Umm, where's the cool stuff." I've always been absurdly impressed by how live the sand-bed gets, and all the little things that grow on the rocks. The tank is so poorly controlled that salinity, temp, Ca++, etc. tend to move around a bit. This is slowly getting improved, but as a result, I've rarely put in corals. Now I'll have a tank that I view as kind of a cop-out, but everyone else will say "look at the pretty fish...." Oh well! =)

Josh Fox

P.S. I don't post often, but when I do I just can't shut up... I'm blaming it on the Peet's coffee....

*The mini-stars I'm referring to are the one's that look like small sea stars, not the ones that look like tiny brittle stars. The mini-stars, according to Dr. Rob Toonen, will empty a sandbed of life quickly. The others (microstars) are a great addition, and eat a ton of detritus and just look really cool.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Josh, I really like the idea of a pooled det. kit order by all of the sand swap participants.

There's a board meeting tonight and I'm bringing this with me.

Thanks for the input everyone!
Paul.
 

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Sorry I have not been a member for the last three years or to a meeting. I need to join again. I'd like to join possibly as a business. If someone can send me the application. I will not get to many meetings due to work and distance from Blaine.

David I get to Oak Harbor almost every Monday. I do tank setup and maintenance for a living.

I love the idea of the live sand swap. I setup a 50 gallon tank last month to try multipling the life. I bought in the IPSF group. The starfish have multiplied rapidly and the gramma shrimp populate the filter. The others may not be doing as well with the 4 pistol shrimp that are in the tank. I really need to get them out but they are so neat.

Ray
 
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