Traveling reefer blues and the anxieties of the vacationing aquarist

Piling the kids in the car. The smell of the ocean and coconut sun screen. Getting up in the middle of the night so you can be on the road when there is not much traffic. These are some of…

Reefing from Afar, Part 3: The Bare-Bones Basics of Automation

In Part 2 of this series, I discussed some of the possibilities for automating your reef system based on your needs. Now that you have a few ideas of what you can automate, I’d like to offer a simple recipe…

Have a Fellow Aquarium Hobbyist on Call for Vacation Emergencies

What is it about taking a vacation that seems to precipitate problems in a marine aquarium? My system can go for many months or even years without a significant glitch, but then as soon as my wife, Melissa, and I…

Reefing from Afar, Part 2: Automation Options

In Part 1 of this series, I laid down some of the expectations for success, and now we are ready to dive into the functions that we can automate. Automation can range from low-tech to high-tech and fit various budgets,…

Reefing from Afar, Part 1: The Six “Ps”

There comes a time in every reef fanatic’s life where little things like work and vacation travel get in the way of enjoying the hobby. While being away for just a week, I have gone through everything from little disasters,…

How Long Can Marine Fish Go Without Food?

This question usually arises when a marine aquarium hobbyist is either preparing to depart for vacation or trying to coax a hunger-striking new fish to eat. While it would be extremely helpful if there were a simple formula to help…

Keep Spares of These Key Marine Aquarium Components

According to Kurtz’s Law, the likelihood of a key aquarium component breaking down and leaving you and your livestock in the lurch varies inversely with your local fish store’s business hours. Okay, so I totally fabricated that law, and I’m…

3 Devices That Provide Vacationing Peace of Mind for Aquarists

I recently returned from a two-week vacation to Japan and Korea. The vacation was wonderful (after all, it’s hard to go wrong with trips to such exotic destinations), but what really helped me enjoy the experience was having some peace…

How to Arrange a Vacation Sitter for Your Saltwater Aquarium

You’re getting ready to depart on a well-deserved summer vacation, and everything is falling into place nicely. You’ve purchased airline tickets, made all your hotel reservations, and packed everything you could possibly need at your travel destination. You’ve even made…