Is It Possible to Overdo Marine Aquarium Water Changes?

In a recent meandering conversation I had with my freshwater-pond-keeping brother-in-law, the question of water change volume and frequency was raised—specifically whether it’s stressful to the livestock if you perform them too frequently or change out too much water at once. My take on the question is that when it comes to water changes, the … [Read More]

Salty Q&A: How Do You Make Small Salinity Adjustments?

Saltwater Smarts visitor Andrew had the following question about our post titled “5 Tips for Maintaining Stable Salinity in a Saltwater Tank.” Since we get similar questions quite frequently, we thought it might be helpful to elaborate on our response in today’s post: Question This article says, when doing a water change, make sure the … [Read More]

Marine Aquarium Water Changes: Don’t Postpone the Personal Payoff!

Yesterday, I finally got around to performing an overdue water change in my 125-gallon tank. Admiring the fruits of my labor afterward, I couldn’t help wondering, “Why on earth do I wait so long to do these when the result is always so rewarding?” Actually, I know exactly why I wait so long, and it’s … [Read More]

Marine Aquarium Terminology: “Nutrient Export” Defined

Among the myriad mysterious terms that might give neophyte marine aquarists a migraine (okay, I’ll stop with the gratuitous alliteration now) is “nutrient export.” What does this term mean? Is it just a fancy way of saying “filtration”? Well, not exactly, though certain forms of filtration do play a part. For our purposes, nutrient export … [Read More]

The Many Means of Nutrient Export in Marine Aquariums

Dissolved nutrients. Sounds like a good thing, right? After all, every organism needs nutrients in one form or another in order to grow and stay in good health. So why are marine aquarium hobbyists—particularly reefkeepers—seemingly so fixated on keeping the level of dissolved nutrients in their systems as low as possible? To understand this fixation, … [Read More]

Before Adding That Marine Aquarium Supplement, Ask Yourself These 5 Questions

You’re perusing the shelves of aquarium supplements at your local fish store when you come across a colorful bottle labeled “Dr. Hfuhruhurr’s Magic Reef Elixir.” Intrigued, you read on to discover the product’s intended purpose. The claims on the label read something like this: “Created in a laboratory using space-age SCIENCE, Dr. Hfuhruhurr’s Magic Reef … [Read More]

The Challenges of Collecting Natural Sea Water for Your Marine Aquarium

Given the ready availability—and relative affordability—of high-quality synthetic sea salt mixes, it’s not surprising that the vast majority of marine aquarium hobbyists today choose to use artificial sea water rather than collect the natural stuff from the ocean for their systems. But that doesn’t necessarily mean synthetic salt water is superior to its natural counterpart … [Read More]

5 Tips for Maintaining Stable Salinity in a Saltwater Tank

While salinity and other water parameters are relatively constant on the natural coral reefs, they’re highly prone to undesirable fluctuation in the closed system of a marine aquarium. As conscientious hobbyists who want to provide the most naturalistic environment possible for the sensitive fish and invertebrates in our care, one of our primary responsibilities is … [Read More]