There’s never been a better time to get into miniature reef aquariums, and setting up a small nano tank is a great way to get started. Reef tanks used to be mystical, magical glass boxes of reef biology but since we better understand how they work and function, most of the magic has been dispelled by actual knowledge and experience.
It’s no secret that nano reef tanks have developed into their very own school of reef keeping. Despite developing into a discreet branch of the modern reef aquarium hobby, much of the knowledge and advice is still rooted in classical mini reef aquarium school of thought, but it’s time to start changing some of this paradigm.
Just over six months ago we began a project to show just how easily it can be to set up a reef tank, by going through every step of the process and completing the tank build in just one day. Not only were we impressed with how this reef tank turned out, but every time we scraped the glass prior to planning a water change, the corals, fish and aquascape kept looking so good that we held off doing any water change . . . for six months!
Not only did we not do any water changes, we only fed the fish and topped off the tank a relative ‘handful’ of times, leading us to enjoy one of our lowest maintenance nano reef tanks ever. In the intervening 180 days we’ve been thinking critically about what has made this particular reef tank so laid-back and easy, and in grand internet fashion, we’ve come up with a list of the top 10 factors which helps reefers keep a very easy, successful, and low maintenance miniature reef tank.
This is not your average ‘Top 10 Tip’ list because instead of just saying something is so, this list is backed up by demonstrations and the results of a thriving, successful nano reef tank after running for over six months. The real emphasis on this nano reef tank was to set up something fast, stable, and have require very minimal maintenance so you’re mileage may vary if you’re looking to set up more of a hands-on, hot rod style nano reef tank which will actually be a ‘hobby’. But if you’re looking for something more laid back, or a safer, more assured path to a successful nano reef tank, we feel very strongly that these are the best tips for this style or nano reef tank.