Live rock has always been a controversial topic within the aquarium hobby. Rock harvested from oceanic reefs has been a staple for reef enthusiasts for many years. It’s hard to replicate the look of a coral reef in a closed environment without the use of natural live rock. The problem is, it takes a lot longer for the live rock beds to recover than it does for dealers to harvest it. Removing natural rock reduces the amount of locations for new corals to settle and develop, so collection threatens the existing coral reefs as corals have less suitable area to colonize. Read More »
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Hello, Frank Indiviglio here. Working with Brown Trout (Salmo trutta), researchers at the University of Gothenburg (Sweden) have confirmed what many fish-keepers have learned by experience – that fishes of the same species possess individual characteristics and distinct personalities.
Aquarium Fish with Personality
Aquarists learn early-on that individual fish react very quickly to changes in their environment, and that not all do so in the same manner. Even the universal tendency of aquarium fishes to move towards the glass in anticipation of food when someone passes by is not usually shared by every tank inhabitant (this is actually a quite interesting bit of learned behavior – after all, fishes that rushed out to “greet” large beasts would not last long in the wild!). Read More »
It’s no secret that cephalopods have amazing skill at camouflaging themselves to avoid predation. You may have seen the unique tactics of the mimic octopus in recent years, or you may have been lucky enough to see a squid or cuttlefish in action, changing color and skin texture with lightning-quick speed. Their abilities are intriguing to us and necessary for their survival in the big ocean blue. Read More »
With the holidays upon us I decided to say a few words about some exciting new nano tank kits coming to us from Fluval. Not long ago we introduced you to the Fluval Edge aquarium, the unique nano aquarium from Hagen with the Frank Lloyd Wright-like design. Hagen has developed a whole series of Fluval aquariums over the last several months to complement the Edge tank, the first of which is the Fluval Chi. Hitting the market earlier this summer, the Fluval Chi is another unique aquarium, designed to radiate positive energy (“chi” is roughly translated as energy in Chinese). Read More »
Hello, Frank Indiviglio here. Marine aquarists and divers are well-aware of the mucous “sleeping bags” produced by Parrotfishes and certain Wrasses each night. It was assumed that these cocoon-like structures discouraged eels, crabs and other nocturnal predators – perhaps the mucous hid the sleeper’s scent, or was bad-tasting or toxic. A study at Australia’s Queensland University, however, has revealed that the mucous cocoon’s main purpose may be to deter external blood-sucking parasites – the first known example of such a phenomenon.
A Good Reason to Hide
Writing in the November 17, 2010 issue of the journal Royal Society Biology Letters, researchers have established that sleeping Parrotfishes suffer numerous parasite attacks when deprived of their mucous cocoons (I couldn’t determine how they removed the cocoons without waking the fish!). Parrotfishes with intact cocoons sleep peacefully through the night, and were rarely bitten. Read More »