Changing Mindset

Discussion in 'General Discussions and Advice' started by Dewald@Dorry, 5 Jan 2010.

  1. Dewald@Dorry


    Posts: 1,204
    20 Aug 2008
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    Johannesburg (Alberton)

    This is my first day back at the office and I would like to wish all of you happy reefing for 2010!

    As we enter this year I would like to share the following with you:

    In this hobby it is strange that just when you think you have mastered or got to grips with something, the carpet gets pulled from underneath your feat.

    Over my time with MASA I came to learn allot and then had to re-learn things as they change and more research blew old theories out of the water.

    I would like to share the following thoughts/questions with you and hope that by doing this we will brake more boundaries and expand our horizons even more during 2010 by opening our mindsets to new and crazy ideas on how to plan and keep the ultimate marine systems.

    · Why is it when we first started this hobby with under gravel and canister filters, some coral species where "Easy" to keep while those "Easy" corals are now classified as "Difficult" to keep. And "difficult" corals then, are now "easy" to keep. Have we really moved forward or have we just shifted our focus to cater for corals we could not keep in early days?
    · Why is every reefer so focused on maintaining constant water temperature, when in fact the water temperature for some parts of the ocean change from day to day, week to week and month to month pending, seasons, weather, currents and climate. This water temperature change also change the behavior of the fish and corals, meaning cooler water will require less activity and more activity with warmer waters. Should we implement these principles in our systems?
    · Are we keeping trend with the amount of corals being removed from our oceans. In my research over the past couple of days I have found loads of evidence stating that due to the amount of corals being removed from licensed areas, divers have to dive deeper and deeper to find the exact same corals that could be found on top of swallow reefs in earlier years. Are corals adapting faster to the change in food, flow and light conditions that originally anticipated? Meaning the deeper the coral was found under water, the less light it requires, the more food it needs and different water movements requirements.
    · Are we basing all of our research on real live reef systems in the oceans or the farms or even licensed areas they were grown or harvested, which can be very different from almost un-touched reef systems?
    · Are we as humans getting so caught up in technology that we forget about the basic things that keep the ocean clean and healthy?
    · Are we creating eco systems in our aquariums or are we just buying all the pretty corals and fish and then individually try and keep them alive?

    For now this is what I have on my mind... There are many, many more theories, myths and questions so please share them with us.

    Let’s challenge ourselves this year to change our mindsets and think out of the box more often.. .

    Let’s try and make people with questions find the answers themselves, and see how they challenge the people that think they know the answers!!:razz:
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  3. Jaco Schoeman

    Jaco Schoeman MASA Contributor

    Posts: 2,241
    22 Dec 2008
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    Nice thinking there Tiger. I am also stumped by theories I have sold to even yourself, then just to realize after research I was misled, misinformed or just stupid. I think the amount of knowledge, especially the locals on MASA gains in a years time is absolutely astonnishing. MASA has a great community that really gets with the times. Many great "saves" has come from MASA, where death should have been the final verdict, but with sharing knowledge the livestock survived.

    I think however, adding on to your post, we should share our own experience with others, and not force it onto others. How many times have we seen, that what works for me doesn't necessarily works for others. There are so many factors to take into consideration, before we can judge to say you are wrong and I am right.

    Hope this makes sense.
  4. viper357

    viper357 Admin MASA Contributor

    Posts: 27,858
    4 May 2007
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    Indeed, one very good saying that I have seen, can't remember who said it though, was something like - read a lot, then make up your own mind on how it works or how will be the best way to work it.
    I think what has happened here is a lot of the 'olden day' corals are now running out, for example the elegance corals, these are now very scarce as apparently they have been over collected, specimens currently being collected are now being collected from much deeper water and they now suffer from a very low survival rate in our tanks. Also the previously 'difficult to keep' corals are now easier to keep because of advancements in technology such as lighting spectrums, skimmers etc.
    I agree with you on this, Jacquesb runs his tank like this. The problem is, unless you have an expensive computer attached to your tank, it is very difficult to regulate the upper and lower temperatures on a daily, monthly or seasonal basis. I think that is why most of us opt to choose a stable temp of 25 or so, because it can be easily achieved.
    This ties in with what I said in the first comment, also deep water acro's are becoming more and more available and these require different conditions in order to thrive.
    Yeah, it is very easy to get caught up in all the pretty and exciting gadgets that are available to us, some systems are so technically advanced it is mind boggling, NASA would be proud of some of the systems out there. This hobby can be as simple or as complicated as you choose it to be.
    Hmmmm, pretty corals and fish does it for me:biggrin:, mixing them all up in an unfamilair environment can cause some harm, but we are all in this for the beauty of the specimens, yes we should probably all be keeping 3 or 4 individual tanks to cater for the individual needs of specimens, but we have managed to find a certain equilibrium whereby different species from different parts of the world can survive and indeed thrive together, but it is a fine balance that is needed in order to keep the system happy and alive.

    There are so many different ways to keeping a saltwater tank, there are the easiest and simplest ways and there are the more expensive and more advanced ways of doing it, just about everything can be done differently, nobody should be discouraged from wanting to try something different, unless of course it has been tried and tested and deemed to be a failure. :)
  5. Dewald@Dorry

    Dewald@Dorry Thread Starter

    Posts: 1,204
    20 Aug 2008
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    Johannesburg (Alberton)

    Any other views?
  6. Broder

    Broder Mudshark

    Posts: 2,087
    13 Sep 2007
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    East London

    As you've pointed out, there are many ways to skin a cat. We're all in the hobby for different reasons, some for the technological aspect of it, others for the chemistry and biology of it and most of us for the aesthetics and beauty that the hobby provides.

    I can't really speak to what motivates everyone, maybe somebody that's a gadget freak can give their input as well here. Personally I'm motivated by trying to create as natural and self sustainable an environment as possible. For me the pleasure is in watching Nature grow and develop this environment in front of me, in the comfort of my own lounge. I've developed a kind of awe and respect for Nature in the last couple of years that nothing else could have taught me.

    It's also taught me not to try to prove to someone that my way is the best way, but rather as you've already pointed out, to learn from others experiences. There is no right and wrong in the natural order of things. It's just our intervention that causes problems. So my approach has been to limit that intervention as far as possible, and to try to understand what is unfolding in front of me to the best of my ability.
  7. Pete


    Posts: 1,196
    3 Apr 2008
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    Under the sea

    I think what has happened here is a lot of the 'olden day' corals are now running out, for example the elegance corals, these are now very scarce as apparently they have been over collected, specimens currently being collected are now being collected from much deeper water and they now suffer from a very low survival rate in our tanks.

    Agree with you on this one viper357. One only wishes that when purchasing these corals that the correct info on the coral would be handed over to you aswell as the elegance that is being collected from the deeper waters has a different lighting requirement than that of the shallows and this being one of its down falls is that the coral does not adjust to some of our lighting
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