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  1. #1
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    First Marine Aquarium Setup

    So I've been getting interested in the aquariums for quick some time now. I spent about 4-5 months reading everything I could before pulling the trigger and finally purchasing a tank to begin down the road of this awesome hobby. Back in August of 2011 I purchased my first 55 gal acrylic aquarium from a local hobbyist down the road. Overall it was a good buy. The tank was in awesome shape. He threw in a custom built stand with hood, lights, all the live rock, live sand, an old HOB skimmer, some small power heads, wavemaker, and even an urchin and brittle star. I was off to a good start for $400. For anyone who has lived in Hawaii, you will know that purchasing anything online for an aquarium other than equipment is nearly impossible (no live rock, no fish, no inverts, no macro, pretty much nothing) so my options were limited at best. After getting everything setup, I decided to sit back and monitor the rock for a while and save up some money to replace some of the equipment. After about a month I saw a huge outbreak of vermetid snails all over the rock. For those who have not seen/heard of these l'il guys, they give your rock the appearance of the guy from hellraiser... (http://reefkeeping.com/issues/2005-01/rs/index.php) follow that link if you'd like to read more about the snails.

    So after some deliberation, I decided to get rid of the rock and start fresh. Live rock on the island is about 6-7 a pound and I wasn't about to spend that kind of money on it just yet...so I decided to make my own rock (aragocrete). It all turned out pretty well so far, and after weeks of curing and saving up money, I've been able to get most the equipment I wanted and begin stocking the tank with some fish. Below is a link to a youtube video of the setup so far.

    Id love to hear any word or suggestions for any of the experienced hobbyists out there or anyone else who has had the pleasure of trying to keep an aquarium in Hawai'i. Mahalo!

    My 55 Gal FOWLR Aquarium...well will be live rock eventually!
    http://youtu.be/JGgIiAshKlM





  2. #2
    Member dlyon101's Avatar
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    Man if I lived in Hawaii I wouldn't need an aquarium. You've got the real thing right there! I'd be snorkeling and diving at all of the reefs all the time.

    We went on a trip to the big island last summer (Kona) and the snorkeling was awesome.


    Sent from my iPhone using MonsterAquariaNetwork app



  3. #3
    Senior Member Arakkis's Avatar
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    Sadly what some locals do out there for marine tanks is to go out there and get it. It is what it is, I figure if it goes back when you're done, no harm no foul
    Collector of the rare and weird. Still don't have a Sand Worm yet =)



  4. #4
    Member dlyon101's Avatar
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    We went snorkeling in a bay by the Captain Cook monument on the big island. My understanding was that was a protected underwater state/national park. I'm sure that is a touristy area and maybe other areas aren't watched so closely. I'll remember swimming with all of those Black Triggers for the rest of my life. Very cool!

    Seeing it all in the wild definitely made me more conscious of buying aquacultered corals and tank raised fish as much as possible.


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  5. #5
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    Actually, it was all the diving and snorkeling that got me into having aquariums



  6. #6
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    Angry

    Quote Originally Posted by dlyon101 View Post
    We went snorkeling in a bay by the Captain Cook monument on the big island. My understanding was that was a protected underwater state/national park. I'm sure that is a touristy area and maybe other areas aren't watched so closely. I'll remember swimming with all of those Black Triggers for the rest of my life. Very cool!

    Seeing it all in the wild definitely made me more conscious of buying aquacultered corals and tank raised fish as much as possible.


    Sent from my iPhone using MonsterAquariaNetwork app
    I'm all about getting the aquacultured and tank raised livestock...you just can't get any of it here. Over Christmas I took a trip to the Big Island. While there my girlfriend & her daughter visited a Sea Horse farm where they've been raising tank bred sea horses for years. At the end of the tour they pitched them to you trying to get you to buy them. It seemed like an awesome deal. A paired set of tank raised sea horses for a little over a $100. So at the end when they asked if there were any questions, I smiled and asked "Do you ship to the other islands?"...even though I knew the answer would be no.

    The woman smiled and said "I'm sorry but we do not ship to the other islands"...then we went on a back and forth conversation about them raising seahorses on an island for export because they're not allowed to be sold in these islands...even though in their story of how they began...the first two sea horses they pulled from te ocean for were right off the "beach you see here"...huge load of bs if you ask me...needless to say...no seahorses for me...

    I think the one thing that gets me the most is the lack of macro out here...I'd love to get my hands on some chaeto...but sadly...you can't have it here...even talking to the LFS'...they say there is a "small select group of people"...its like the inner circle cult of macroalgae out here...



  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arakkis View Post
    Sadly what some locals do out there for marine tanks is to go out there and get it. It is what it is, I figure if it goes back when you're done, no harm no foul
    As far as collecting your own fish...you can actually get permits out here that allow you to collect so many fish during dives for personal use....other business (like coral fish hawaii) have permits that allow them to collect locally for distribution...I've gone into their store when the staff was fresh off the boat...it just sux that if its not in a LFS here...you can't get it...I can't even get bottles of stress zyme or anything like that online...the only things you can get are your equipment...and shipping is a real kick in the teeth...if they even ship here...a good example...I was looking at LED light setups....Marineland Reef Capable LED 48-60"...$379 on amazon....at the LFS $575...so you'd think Amazon would be the choice...but no...they won't ship that here...total fail



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