New blog!

I have decided to do some blogging again. In recent time I’ve been making some videos about my aquarium, but I miss the writing. One of the reasons I stopped blogging was the fact that it was impossible to know how many people who read the blog and hard to find out anything about their interests and way of thinking. So it became a bit too much of a one way communication. So now I will start using this WordPress platform where I can get some more information about that, and perhaps a little feedback now and then.

November 2022

View from the side.


There is massive algae growth almost all year in this aquarium. I am pruning and pruning. Since I follow the natural light and temperature levels different types of algae grow at different times of the year. Just like in a reef aquarium it takes several years before a permanent flora of multi year algae have established themselves. Now, in late fall the red species are the most dominating. In spring, brown thread algae are very active, and in summer the green ones like sea lettuce grow very fast.

The green one could be common green branched weed (Cladophora rupestris)
The thicker one, all the way in the foreground is probably irish moss (Chondrus crispus).
These algae are difficult to identify without looking at them in a microscope.

The green leafy one in the back is sea lettuce (Ulva sp.). There is also a curly green one in the middle that I haven’t identified.

Dahlia anemones

Dahlia anemones are the most beautiful anemones in Norway. There are two species; urticina eques and urticina felina. They vary in color. They can be completely red or have stripes of pink, orange, purple, white, brown. The ones I have are probably urticina felina. They thrive in shallow, wave exposed water, tending to hide in rock crevices. Urticina eques is larger, and large specimens can often be found in calmer water, clearly visible on top of rocky bottom.

Dahlia anemone (Urticina felina)
A red dahlia anemone is hiding in a crevice among many types of algae.

Anemone parasites

Lately my plumose anemones (Metridium senile) have been plagued with parasites. I think they must be flatworms. I haven’t dug out the microscope to look at them. They look like round white blobs on the surface of the anemones, but when I caught some of them and put them in some water on a white plate they looked brownish and elongated, and were moving around. Not possible to see exactly what they were with the naked eye.

Parasitic flatworms on anemone.
Parasitic flatworms on plumose anemone (Metridium senile).

Hermit shells

My hermits keep growing and I just haven’t had the time to run and look for local whelk shells for them. So I just had to buy them some tropical shells on line. They were very happy when they could drop their way undersized periwinkle shells in favour of these nice big ones.

Had to buy tropical shells for my poor hermits. They love them!
This one is still happy with a local periwinkle shell.


I have one whole fish in the aquarium now. It is a rock gunnel (Pholis gunnellus). This is an eel shaped fish species that tend to do well in my aquariums. It has been there since spring 2021. I practically never see it. They prefer to hide under rocks. I have tried two other fish species too: Sea sticklebacks (Spinachia spinachia) were the first ones. Unfortunately, the strong flow needed for algae, combined with lots of anemones probably killed them. I don’t believe that any type of free swimming fish could thrive in this aquarium. I also tried sand gobies (Pomatoschistus minutus). They lived longer, but gradually disappeared. I think their skittishness, and the fact that there are anemones all over the aquarium may have been a deadly combination. Perhaps painted gobies (Pomatoschistus pictus) would be better. They have much calmer personalities. There are a number of other candidates, like fish with suction cups under their bellies and a type of small flounder. But I haven’t managed to catch any yet.


The prawns (Palaemon elegans) have been in the aquarium for 21 months now. They seem to still be going strong. Some of them must be close to 3 years old. I wonder how old they can get.

Prawn (Palaemon elegans)

Plans ahead

I have a hope of getting to start up a new aquarium in the autumn next year (2023). I have kept a marine algae aquarium in our living room for about 20 months now. It is looking better all the time as thriving algae are overgrowing the aquascape. I look forward to seeing it in winter and early spring when it is at its most beautiful. But I am longing for an aquarium that is a bit bigger and has permanent ozone injection. Also, even though I have a sound damper box for the chiller, it can be heard. I would like a dead silent chiller. I plan to build one myself. With the new aquarium I would like to do a non-photosynthetic setup.

In the next update of this blog I plan to describe the technical setup. The aquarium, chiller, filters, lighting, water circulation etc.

2 thoughts on “New blog!”

  1. Good to see you online again Jon! Your earliest writings were what inspired me to work with macro algae and further my deep dive into native biotope Aquaria. We’re really lucky to have your insight on topics like this and build guides thanks! Your new system looks amazing as always can’t wait to hear more about it and how you maintain it.

  2. Nice blog and a different approach on what everyone decides they want in their tank.
    I am completely new to salt water aquariums.
    I try to read each day about this hobby and Google questions that come up. I look forward to hearing more from you. I’m still cycling my 20 gallon tank.

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