These two weeks have completely turned my project around. This is because there was a lot of forward progress and positive results. However, there is still a lot to accomplish still before I can start the experiment.
The first thing that happened that was a sign of progress was moving the Zoanthids into the tank that was showing to be more effective (tank 2). This was because tank 1 was struggling to keep up with filtering out all of the algae that was being produced from the decaying frags from the earlier fatalities. I also removed all of the decaying frags being of all the bacteria that they were releasing into the water. However, by moving the Zoanthid proved very successful because we started to see it opening up and actually growing.
The next thing that I did to help the experiment was raise the lights up to 20″ above the water level. This is because the light’s intensity was what had been responsible for the failure of the majority of the frags in the first place. This also means that filling up the tanks with water will be much easier without the lights in the way.
After both of these things were complete, I started to think about how I can better the well being of the tanks for the future. The best solution that I could think of and get from Zack is by introducing more biotic factors into the environments. This means that I need to get some fish into the tanks or get some more snails to help naturally clean out the tanks and naturally filter the water as well.
The last thing that I did was put the deceased coral frags under the stereoscope to try to see if there are any discoveries to be made about what happened to them. This brought a lot of different information to the table because I was able to get a very close view of the corals. One discovery in particular is the mysterious specimen pictured below that is only visible under a blacklight.
As far as the near future goes, I am planning on acquiring some more biotic factors such as fish, shrimp, and snails to the tanks to help clean the tanks and make the environment more stable as well as lowering the PVC platform that I made for the beginning of the experiment but to a height that is able to keep the corals at a sufficient depth while keeping them off the bottom as well.