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Aquatic Life Issue,1 Quarter, 1 2011

Clown Fish... The Inside look at how clown fish could affect your tank... pg. 9

Issue, 1 Quarter, 1 2011 Chief Editor Alana Bilotti

Photographer Alana Bilotti Graphic Design Alana Bilotti

Assistant Graphic Designer Jenessa Nahon Brian Blank

Advertising Alana Bilotti

Consultant Phil Wang A.J. Hilton

Publisher Company AB Productions

Contact Information

Aquatic Life Issue, 1 Quarter, 1 2011

Titles 1. Letter From Your Editor - A Reflection on the first quarter

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2. Allie Aquarium Adventure

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4. Test Your Tank Knowledge

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- Allie shares her trials and tribulations

- Take a quiz to see how much you really know about your tank.

5. Tank Contest Winner

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- Our magazine is proud to offer rewards for establishing a great tank

3. Stop Clowning Around F 6

- A deeper look into how Clown Fish can affect your tank.

Vieques, Puerto Rico Your fish’s favorite Tropical destination


Brought to you by

Dear Hobbyist,


his first issue is dedicated to you! The new hobbyist, one that is unfamiliar with technical terms that all the other aquarium magazines use but the layman terms. Simplifying the hobby to fit. the needs for even the first time tanker There will be a time when technical terms will become more familiar as you enter into the deeper realms of tanking but in the mean time don’t over whelm yourself. Enjoy your tank and the first time ex erience. Try not to r ush but if you are impatient like e yu will find it hard.

Chief Editor/ Aquarium Enthusiast Alana Bilotti

Throuh many different attempts through trial-and-error I have becomemore ofmytankand the proper tanking techniques. Without the need to rush my environment along I may not be in the position I am in today. As I become more experienced in my saltwater aquarium skills I will be happy to pass this useful information on to you. With the growth of the magazine comes groth of knowledge for myself and the magainzes readers. My position is to help you benefit from my uncanny experiences. These are my unorthodox way of doing things. My suggestion to you, learn from my mistakes. In the long run you will save yourself a lot of time and money. However; if you have the need to rush and not learn from my experience. We here at Aquatic Life would love to hear your stories. You can e-mail us at

Your Aquarium Enthusiast,

Alana Bilotti

F Alana Bilotti




ne o m e m stor a e s ust k. h t d n l, se the y ta m m Da st in got t s o fir ot l ay I My at g st d th e fir th

A fresh new Bio-Cube a month after the dust storm.


A star fish who is not coral friendly which I was unaware of when I purchased it,

Adventure A

s a first time hobbyist, my first quarterly column should keep all of our readers well informed on what not to do with an alternative approach. Well, as you know from your editor impatient way has now led us to delivery this funny interpretation of saltwater aquariums. So, lets start from the top. I received my first tank (a 28--gallon Biocube) as gift from my boyfriend for our two year anniversary. I was so excited, it came with the whole kit and Caboodle! The Biocube itself comes ready to rock with the pump, algae balls and coral lights. Next in my love basket came the “live sand” and the sea salt to mix together with filtered water so this can all be added to the Biocube. So, we started by adding the sand first and then mixed the water with the sea salt. Afterwards, we added the water to the cube. Now keep in mind when you add the water to the sand this creates a big Biocube of satly-watery sandstorm inside. Instead of letting the water and sand settle from this murky messy state, I needed fish in the tank then, immediately! There was no reasoning with me. The poor Damsels disappeared into the murky water for days. My advice to you, at least wait for your water to settle before you go rushing fish in your murky water (for their sake not yours!). The proper way to start your tank is to “establish” your tank. This means you want to have your tank cycle for a good 4 to 6 weeks be-

fore adding different forums of life to your tank. During this time you can add damsels and/or a “cleanup crew.” Which consists of hermit crabs, crabs and snails. They will help maintain your tank throughout its life span. However, there is a secret I learned through my impatient ways, there are different products out there which can help speed up the cycling process. An example is Aquarium Instant Bio-Spira. This can make a 4 to 6 weeks process happen in a week or less. I bought it but never used it. A week went by and my damsels were looking alive and having a grand ol’ time. All of a sudden one day I notice this coral looking thing coming out of my live rock. I thought to myself “Wow this is great! I got a couple free pieces of coral.” But much to my surprise when I went to the Pet Store I found out this “cool coral” was nothing of the sort. They called it aiptasia and are a species in the Jelly Fish family. The young lady assisting me said, “You have to shoot them with the syringe and a calcium solution but be careful because they move fast and when they smell fear they disperse their seed.” She followed the reassuring instruction with “it’s fun trying to kill them all off.” I knew I was in for it after her statement. I headed home to kill off the new enemy. Wouldn’t you know they did exactly what she said they did. Before I knew it I had aiptasia popping up all over the place. Even on

the glass! There was no stopping it... So I decided I would try a different approach. I took all the live rock that was living in my tank to the in tercoastal and set it free. (Well set me free from a tank filled with Aiptasia.) This is the part where a new love story develops. I decided to go to a different pet store because the first store had the tainted live rock as far as I’m concerned. A friend had told me about a saltwater aquarium store. I walked into Rockin’ Reef and was amazed! There was nothing but fish! All the other stores I had been to were stores for all types of animals. Not Rockin’ Reef, saltwater aquarium only. I immediately fell in love. There was no going back. They had a whole wall filled with untainted live rock so I purchased three new piece for my aquarium. I was satisfied for the day. Not only did I never go back to the pet store with the tainted live rock, I never have been to another aquarium store since. I hope you have taken some important information from this! Looking forward to next time!


est of Luck, llie!


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lown Fish

“Clown Fish are the first fish to be succesfully tank raised,” said Ned Fennegan. F7


top Clowning Around, Find out what’s right for you

People are probably most familiar with clown fish from the Disney movie Finding Nemo. What people fail to realize is most Clown Fish are not as friendly as Marlin and his lovable son Nemo. Clown Fish are native to the sea and compromises about 30 different species . They are most commonly found in warm climates such as; the Pacific Ocean, Red Sea and Indian Ocean. They vary in color from yellow to blue and range in different sizes. Their name comes from their vibrant color and are commonly mistaken for fooling around with their crazy antics. “In reality, Clown Fish are very aggressive and territorial. They will go to great lengths to protect their territory,” said John Harm, a staff writer for aquarium community. When it comes to the aggressive behavior Clown Fish tend


to react in the same way. So, it depends on when you acclimate the fish to your tank. Traditionally, when fish are introduced to an environment at the same time there is not much room for aggressive behavior. A little taunting may occur but once territories are divided and established. Once this happens the species are fine and everyone is at peace. However, when a new species is added to the tank this is where things can get deadly. “I have tried to introduce a couple of different species to my tank and my clown fish becomes a serious bully,” said Julie Smith, aquarium hobbyist. “I once put an arrow crab in my tank and my clown fish pick its legs off one by one.” This problem of aggression can happen when an established tank species feels there is an “intruder.” There can also be behavior issues when a mate is involved. As most species, protecting a

mate is a number one factor in aggressive disputes. These problems are also more predominant in smaller tanks. If a tank is larger and the community is sized accordingly there can be no aggression at all because all species have their space and learn to respect one another. Understanding your species is half the battle in finding out who is compatible with who. This is a responsibility as a tank owner. If you have submissive fish and wish to keep them a Clown Fish may not be the right fit for you established environment if your tank is small. Do your research and in a worse case your local hobbyist store can help. There is no reason your enviroment can not all live in harmony together with a little problem solving and daily care. -By: Alana Bilotti

Methods to Try When Adding New Species *Remove all the established fish from your aquarium. (Including all the new species) *Rearrange the rocks and other deco rations in your tank. * Place a when ventilated plastic barrier in the tank to introduce separate the fish for a few weeks until they get acclimated to each other. *If your tank is too big for a well ventilated plastic bag try a well ventilated box for a few weeks until the fish have time to warm up to each other. * If all else fails, take the fish back to the aquarium store where you purchased your fish and ask if you can trade your fish in for any species that is more compatible with your tank.


Test Your Tank Knowledge

There are some very important facts when it comes to taking care of your tank. If you want a clean and healthy tank you should know how to maintain your aquarium. Some people think its okay to start to establish a salt water aquarium and the rest can take care of itself. This couldn’t be further from the truth.

So, we here at Aquatic Life think its important to test your knowledge on aquarium maintance. We hope this is an easy fun test and if you have trouble or don’t know all the answer, we hope you learn something. There is nothing wrong with not knowing all the answers but to take knowledge from the test.

1. How often should you change the water in your tank? A. Once a week B. Once a month C. One a year

5. What type of water do you add to the tank when water evaporates? A. Tap water B. distilled/filtered water C. Chlorine water

2. When you change the water, how much should you change out. A. 2 gallons B. A third of the tank C. More than half

6. In between filter changes, how often should you rinse the filter off? A. Twice a week B. once a week C. Never

3. How many snails and hermit crabs should you have part of your “clean-up crew?” A. 5 of each B. One of each per gallon C. As many as you want

7. What is the proper temperature range for a saltwater aquarium? A. 65 degree Fahrenheit or below B. 72-80 degree Fahrenheit C. 80 degree and above

4. How often should you feed your fish? A. Every other day b. Once a day C. Once a week

8. How many hours a day should the lights be on? A. 2-3 hours B. The same as the amount of daylight C. All night

If you chose 5 or more “A”

If you chose 5 or more “B”

You are still learning about what is important when it comes to your tank. There are some general facts that will help you to maintenance a healthy and happy tank. Most of the facts come from experience and asking questions.

You are either an experienced tank owner or you are catching on quickly. The fish and other species in your aquarium are happy to have you as a tank owner. You deserve a pat on the back for your hard work and well maintenance habits.

Keep Up the Good Work!


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If you chose 5 or more “C” You should start paying more attention to what is going on in your environment. There are plenty of sources to help you with any questions or problems you may have with your tank. If all else fails, the professionals working at your local aquarium store will be happy to help you. Good Luck!

Tank Contest Winner!

Winner of the 1st A.L. tank contest is Sandra Medero owner of the 65-gallon AGA. This is a great example of what your tanks should look like.

A clam with two types of coral and an anenome.

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This big anenome is home to Sandra’s only Clownfish.

A coral friendly starfish tries to climb the glass.

Aquatic Life is proud to be sponsered by to host a quarterly salt water aquarium contest. Anyone is eligable to enter the contest with any kind of tank. We are hoping to eventually have different catergories

of tanks. In the mean time, we can only host one. It is up to the proud readers to send in photos of their aquariums. We encourage people to entert to win money and motivates to keep a healthy tank. Details are below.

Feel you have what it takes to be the next Aquatic Life Tank Contest Winner? Enter at: AquaticLife@mail. com. WIn $100!

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