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Ultimate Marine Aquariums: Saltwater Dream Systems and How They Are Created

Organized by family for easy reference, each profile includes all essential care, feeding and husbandry advice. The species profiled include all available reef aquarium choices, with scores of seldom seen, rare and recently discovered species. Written by the worlds most-read, most respected expert on marine fishes for the home aquarium, The PocketExpert Guide to Reef Aquarium Fishes is a must-read for any fish enthusiasts.

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  1. Mark Asch "notehead" says:

    Fascinating and Informative Almost all aquarists, from novices to experts, would love to have a bigger tank. But the past 20 years have brought so many new techniques and types of equipment to the hobby of “reefkeeping” that it can be very challenging to determine what is truly the BEST way to keep a reef tank. How do the experts keep the inhabitants of their tanks as healthy and happy as possible?”Ultimate Marine Aquariums” shows what a number of excellent aquarists have done to achieve their success. However, as Mr. Paletta points out, there is no single best approach, and you may find some of your assumptions overturned. Every tank shown in this compendium has excellent water quality, lighting, and circulation. But is it absolutely necessary to have undetectable phosphates or nitrates? Apparently not. Is it essential to have a system circulate all of it’s water many times each hour, or to have 10+ watts of light per gallon overhead? Again, apparently not. Is it imperative to add special food for your corals? Actually, no.What the book does clearly show is trends — you are more likely to have success if you have more space, more circulation, more light, pristine water quality, and careful maintenance of certain parameters such as calcium levels and pH. You certainly don’t need “Ultimate Marine Aquariums” to tell you that. Truly, the reason this book is so interesting is that it shows many approaches that can be used to achieve an excellent result.The photography, as others have noted, is not first class. But it is adequate to show the scale of these breathtaking tanks, and many times there are also pictures of the equipment set-ups that hobbyists will find very interesting. While some pictures are of lesser quality, there are quite a few that are very fine, including close-ups of some amazing specimens. Also, the text is well written and edited, which, frankly, is more than you can say for quite a few books and magazines in the hobby.I am not aware of any other book on this subject which has taken this valuable approach of surveying a large number of successful reef tanks and describing the details of their equipment, maintenance, and livestock. For that reason alone, this volume deserves a place on the bookshelf of any marine aquarium hobbyist.In closing, I’d like to make a point about the hobby in general: the future of reefkeeping lies in aquaculture – the commercial breeding or propagation of the many animals we put in our tanks. Reefs worldwide are suffering from pollution, warming, and disease. The last thing these fragile ecosystems need is to be literally taken apart so that a hobbyist can have some “live rock” or coral specimens for a fishtank. We don’t need to destroy the source of our fascination; our hobby has reached the point where the harvesting of live rock and coral is truly no longer necessary. Live rock can be easily created with concrete and aragonite, and seeded with live sand or “grunge” from commercial suppliers. The resulting articifial live rock will support microfauna that is hardier, more effective in metabolising nutrients, and more diverse than what you’d find on live rock from any one part of the ocean. Corals of many types can be propagated, and an increasing number of marine fish & invertebrates (clowns, seahorses, angels, gobies, tridacna, abalone, etc.) are now being tank-bred or tank-raised. I urge you, for the sake of your hobby and the reefs that inspire it, to limit yourself as much as possible to aquacultured specimens. For a wealth of information about creating your own live rock and propagating corals, check out

  2. Razberra says:

    Excellent Resource! This book is direct and clear. It has detailed descriptions, great pictures of fantastic marine aquariums, the equipment used, dimensions, water chemistry, etc.If you need a resource to help you plan or gather ideas on a reef tank, this should be the first stop. A hobbyist could spend thousands of dollars experimenting in search for the right equipment, or use this book.The book is elaborate enough for a novice to understand the concepts and technical requirements for a marine tank.The only warning I would have is to the hobbyist who is looking for instructions on how to build a reef tank or details about equipment. This book does not elaborate on construction. But regardless, if you are already in the hobby its superb, if you’ve just started it will prove valuable. I consider this the back bone aiding in a comparative analysis of my own aquarium.On top of that, the price of this book is really inexpensive for what you get.

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