Saltwater Walstad?

"For those who wished to find the answers to their questions by doing some experiments." - Paul K

Saltwater Walstad?

Postby Erica Wieser » Sun Apr 17, 2011 10:00 pm

Is it possible to create a saltwater Walstad aquarium? I am trying to find marine plants that would take up nitrogen. I was thinking about Maiden's Hair, Chlorodesmis, for example this seller: http://www.liveaquaria.com/product/prod ... pcatid=659

Does anyone have any experience with that plant or with saltwater plant gardens?
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Re: Saltwater Walstad?

Postby Erica Wieser » Sun Apr 17, 2011 10:04 pm

Oooh, here's a cool picture: http://university.uog.edu/botany/474/im ... desmis.jpg
Can you imagine a tank with a whole bottom of this Chlorodesmis stuff growing like hairgrass? That would be a very neat saltwater aquarium. :D

The only issue is that I've never kept a saltwater aquarium before, just freshwater, and I don't know what I'm doing as far as marine setups go.
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Re: Saltwater Walstad?

Postby Erica Wieser » Mon Apr 18, 2011 5:09 pm

I have discovered another plant, Caulerpa. Here is an image of Caulerpa taxifolia: http://www.min-kulture.hr/userdocsimage ... ia%202.jpg

Here's a close up of Caulerpa taxifolia: http://swr.nmfs.noaa.gov/hcd/cal1.jpg

I am thinking of placing it like vallisneria behind the "hairgrass" equivalent, chlorodesmis.
Last edited by Erica Wieser on Mon Apr 18, 2011 6:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Saltwater Walstad?

Postby Erica Wieser » Mon Apr 18, 2011 5:13 pm

Oooh, a red algae that can add a bit of color to the otherwise green (so far) aquarium.
Red Gracilaria: http://www.liveaquaria.com/product/prod ... catid=1127
It seems to come in red: http://reefbuilders.com/2009/10/17/prop ... -and-food/
and green: http://oceansveins.com/images/gracilaria%20green.jpg
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Re: Saltwater Walstad?

Postby Erica Wieser » Mon Apr 18, 2011 5:19 pm

This one's called Halimeda, but I don't know if I like it. It doesn't look like a plant.
http://islandmarinelife.com/islandmarin ... 3e85f075b4
http://www.soest.hawaii.edu/expeditions ... i10web.jpg
But maybe I could drape it like a weeping moss down a back wall. Like this image: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/Algae%20and% ... 282%29.JPG
Erica Wieser
 
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Re: Saltwater Walstad?

Postby Erica Wieser » Mon Apr 18, 2011 5:35 pm

Maybe like this?
saltwater walstad resize.png
saltwater walstad resize.png (102.39 KiB) Viewed 52805 times

Or I could remove the plants that frame the side and make it look more like Amano's famous discus photograph, with the sloping "grass" unbounded by anything on the sides. Edit: Wait, no, there are going to be black sides and back on this tank because I'm making it out of wood. Right-o. The plants might as well be there to cover the blank wooden walls.
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Re: Saltwater Walstad?

Postby Erica Wieser » Tue Apr 19, 2011 8:02 am

I keep encountering water flow recommendations for these plants. Does that mean that current is very important for keeping them alive? Do I need a strong current for these algae? Because I was kind of hoping on having a seamonkey and mandarin dragonette tank, with low current and lots of artemia and a pair of mandarins eating the artemia. If the algae requires high current, that would mess with the artemia. Does anyone know anything about saltwater algae cultivation? please help me
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Re: Saltwater Walstad?

Postby Erica Wieser » Tue Apr 19, 2011 8:10 am

Also, I just received a reply from Drs. Foster and Smith about a question I had asked them about marine plant nitrate uptake. Here's the question and its response.

Question:
On the maiden's hair page (marine plant), you mention that it is sensitive to nitrates. Don't aquatic plants use nitrates and ammonia in order to grow? I am trying to learn more about this, because I am curious about saltwater plants and which ones eat the most nitrate so I can set up the saltwater equivalent to a Walstad tank. Any information you have would be appreciated :)


Response:
Dear Erica,

Thank you for contacting Drs. Foster and Smith's LiveAquaria. We would like to apologize for any inconvenience that this matter may have caused. Marine plants do convert normal levels of nitrates into CO2, however, high levels can be harmful. May we suggest performing a searching using your favorite Internet engine for more information on Marine Plants.

Thank you for choosing Drs. Foster & Smith LiveAquaria for your live aquatic needs. You are a valued customer and we look forward to hearing from you in the future.


They said that high levels of nitrates can harm Maiden's Hair. Is that a lie or the truth? Do other aquatic plants have a nitrate saturation point?
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Re: Saltwater Walstad?

Postby Erica Wieser » Tue Apr 19, 2011 1:39 pm

Found some pictures of other people's macroalgae saltwater garden setups.

http://reefkeeping.com/issues/2007-01/s ... s/nine.jpg
http://reefkeeping.com/issues/2007-01/s ... photo2.jpg

Also found a list of macroalgae on http://reefkeeping.com/issues/2007-01/sl/index.php including something called Fauchea, which looks like this:
Fauchea resize.jpg
Fauchea resize.jpg (73.83 KiB) Viewed 52782 times

Source: http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4055/468 ... f279cd.jpg

There are actually quite a lot of macroalgae to use in my planted saltwater tank design. Some of them are really neat. :D I'm going to continue reading http://web1.reefcentral.com/forums/foru ... esc&page=3 and see what I can learn :)
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Re: Saltwater Walstad?

Postby Erica Wieser » Tue Apr 19, 2011 1:46 pm

So, I'm actually seeing a lot of strange colored saltwater algaes. There's ochtodes, which is blue, and these things that look like grapes or something. They're very not-plant-like. I think I want to restrict this tank specifically to looking just like what a freshwater planted tank would. I want to use 'grasses' and bushy 'plant' type algae.

Also, there's another interesting algae called Penicillus which looks like those moss trees I've seen in contests recently.
Image: http://www.thereefshoppe.ca/images/shaving_brush.jpg
Info: http://www.seaslugforum.net/find/penicillus
Source to buy: http://www.liveaquaria.com/product/prod ... catid=1478
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Re: Saltwater Walstad?

Postby Erica Wieser » Tue Apr 19, 2011 2:04 pm

Wow, I just went to ebay and typed in "Macroalgae". There are so many for sale! This is not going to be as expensive of a setup as I thought it would be. :D
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Re: Saltwater Walstad?

Postby Erica Wieser » Tue Apr 19, 2011 2:15 pm

I guess I'm not the first person to think of this. Here's another person's macroalgae tank: http://web1.reefcentral.com/forums/show ... ?t=1905760 but theirs looks less like a freshwater planted tank and more like a full rainbow of colors. I'm sticking with green and possible a touch of red, I think.
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Re: Saltwater Walstad?

Postby Erica Wieser » Tue Apr 19, 2011 2:29 pm

Found a list of websites where one can buy macroalgae. http://www.reefcentral.com/forums/showt ... ?t=1049159

This is very neat. I am planning all of this for an aquarium that I might set up within the next year or so (I'm going to build it myself, out of wood and sealant) and it's fun to plan ahead for the types of life forms that are going to live in it. :)
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Re: Saltwater Walstad?

Postby Erica Wieser » Tue Apr 19, 2011 2:46 pm

Sargassum is similar in color to red rotala. Image of sargasum: http://manuel.gonzales.free.fr/pages/sa ... ulgare.jpg
Source for purchase: http://reefcleaners.org/index.php?page= ... &Itemid=34
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Re: Saltwater Walstad?

Postby shieber » Wed Apr 20, 2011 3:37 am

"Sea Monkeys! the world's favorite Instapet. "In fact, the only Instapet I've ever heard of. They are the worst of Instapets; they are the best of Instapets!

This brings back such memories -- I love it when the family of sea monkeys gathers in front of the castle and waves at the passersby. Best not to name them as it's always a little painful to then fed them to the cichlids. ;)
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