July 7 2013
The phytoplankton project is still running, and the refugium is working fine. But I haven't done any changes lately. All my energy has been used on other things, so I haven't had time for any aquarium work. Below you can see some of the things that have taken my time.
Another issue that has made it harder for me to make updates is the fact that the fogging has become gradually worse on the double glass. In spring when it is warm and wet outside and the water was cold it was particularly bad. So finally I just decided to cut away the outer pane. It went well. Now I need to find a way to get it back on.
Here you can clearly see the fog on the glass.
It was fairly easy to cut the glass pane loose. It is easy to carefully scrape sealant off the glass with a sharp knife blade. So cleaning the glass went well too.
I decided to use plain epoxy resin as glue for the double glass for the new zooplankton refugium. I did a test of gluing aluminium and glass together with this some months ago. It seemed to work just fine. Recently, however, I discovered that on one of the samples I made the glue had split loose from both the aluminium and the glass. Sigh. Back to the drawing board. Anyway, by then the zooplankton refugium was done, and I will use it as it is until the glass falls off. Actually, it won't really fall off, just stop working. Also, I was not happy with how the epoxy was to work with in this setting. It involved mixing many batches of thin epoxy that had a tendency to flow. Not at all user friendly.
This was a bit impractical. I didn't have long aluminium square tubes so I cut some wider rectangular tubes and filled them with MS polymer sealant for the long sides. But when they were cut they twisted at the edges and got really ugly to watch and work with. I will not do that in the future.
Here I am trying to both bend the mid piece straight and keep it from floating around on the thin epoxy glue. Don't go there my friend.
It was a real hassle to work with the thin floating epoxy in this setting.
I used some sealing gum to make sure the epoxy didn't flow.
I finally put on this white plastic molding. I am very pleased with how that looks. I will use that on all such projects in the future.
I was resently contacted by another enthusiastic colwater aquarist. He lived in Bergen at the time, but was in the process of moving to another city. His focus was on fish, he had several special species, including a shark and a ray. Both juveniles. Here are the pictures I took of his aquarium.
Small-spotted cat shark (Scyliorhinus canicula).
Longspined bullhead (taurulus bubalis).
He got the shark and ray as egg capsules from a public aquarium. They hatched and grew to their current size in his system. They are about two years old and in fine condition. Thornback Ray (Raja clavata).
The brown stuff that looks like mud in this picture is covering large parts of the aquascape. When looking closer one can see that it is actually thousands of small tubes made by filter feeding animals. They look like worms, but I haven't studied them closely. I am thinking about finding something that eats them as some population restriction is needed.
The largest colony of mussels(Mytilus edulis) keeps growing and is getting fascinatingly large. It started forming two years ago, from juvenile clams that came from larvae. Now it is a mature colony of the type I find in nature. Notice the ribbon worm winding itself around and among them. It has been in there for two years. I wonder how long it is now. It can become 60 meters.
The large sand clam in the middle is a gift from another aquarist. It is doing very well. It should have deeper sand to bury itself in though.
The brittle stars have lived in the aquarium for about two years. They have all been adults for a long time.
This sea squrit has been in there for 2 years, and is doing very well.
The dog whelks (Nucella lapillus) are still alive and are laying eggs.