29 gallon feeling jealous of all the attention the 75 is getting?
by, 03-05-2012 at 11:04 PM (429 Views)
I suppose the 29 gallon must be feeling jealous of the attention and parts bill for the 75 gallon. Today while I was home for lunch the second of the main tank power compact light units went up in smoke. Horrible smell! Luckily, I was home and was able to get it unplugged and outside. No fire, but did I mention the horrible smell. Fried ballast is not a pleasant smell.
So in the last couple of months both 65 watt power compacts (used for the main lighting in the tank) have given up the ghost and the power compact unit over the hang on the back fuge went out as well. Atleast with the other two the ballast just made a vibrating noise and died. The last of the three made sure its demise will be long remembered.
Unfortunately, that left me with no lighting over the tank. When the fuge light went out I just took the fuge off and cleaned it so I can put it on craigslist. When the first of the main tank lights went out, I figured I could limp along with the one remaining light until I got the 75 up and running. Unfortunately, this plan didn't come to fruition.
I had always hoped to have the 75 cycling by March because I knew it would be a busy month. My other hobby (growing/dwarfing Japanese maples) takes up most of my time (and money) during March due to repots, changing out soil, pruning etc. Also, my wife is going to see her family in Arizona this month, and I had promised to get her phone set up with some movies and books for the trip. Her mom sent her a standby ticket and sitting at the airport by yourself with nothing to do is never fun.
The timing and the shortness of funds left me with few options. So off I went to the closest pet store and found the cheapest 30" light solution I could on short notice. It's an Aquasun 2 lamp t5 unit. Lighting over the tank went from a barely adequate 130 watts of power compact to 48 watts of t5. I hope not too many of the ricordea's die due to loss of light. The xenia I'm not too worried about (turned into more of a pest than an interesting specimen) and the hair algae long age killed most of the zoa's.
The good news in all this is due to multiple large water changes, reduced feeding, pulling as much as I physically can, using phosphate remover, and cleaning my skimmer with vinegar (improved skimmate production) I think I'm beginning to finally turn the corner on the hair algae. The remaining stuff in the tank is beginning to turn a very light green to yellowish color. I was also able to find Rod's Foods at a store in Renton. Long drive for fish food, but I'm often in the area anyway, so I picked up some of the original mix yesterday. I'm hopeful that the t5 "temporary" unit will get me through without too many ricordea looses and the new regiment will finally get the phosphate issue under control so it doesn't get transferred into the 75.