Artemia provide an essential food source for our juvenile clownfish, jellyfish and seahorses, and our Fish Lab production continues successfully. This month we saw a decline in average Rotifer concentrations (down from 218/ml to 168/ml) probably due to a return of ciliates within the population. Ciliates are protozoans with hair-like appendages (cilia) used in movement. Their diet is primarily bacteria and algae, therefore, due to the clear lack of algae within our Rotifer population, the growth of ciliates is likely due to bacterial bloom. This may be due to excess yeast (Rotifer food) or potentially additional bacterial numbers within the seawater used to wash and replenish the Rotifer environment. Whilst all the seawater used in conjunction with Rotifer production is filtered before use, small amounts of bacteria may be present due to bacterial blooms caused by changing environmental conditions. The presence of ciliates is managed by increased cleaning schedules, with regular monitoring to adjust the feeding and cleaning schedules accordingly.
No eggs were produced this month, but all of our 49 Clark’s Clownfish juveniles are healthy and continue to grow well.
Small Aquarium One
Mini coral frame – the five remaining living coral fragments are healthy.
On 19 August, our breeding pair of Maldivian anemonefish (Amphiprion nigripes) laid eggs for the first time. We will continue to monitor this pair in the upcoming months.
Small Aquarium Two
Mini coral frame (Acropora digitifera) – two of the fragments died this month, whereas the others are growing well and encrusting onto the frame.
The colony of Galaxea fascicularis is healthy and growing well, and has now encrusted onto the wall of the aquarium.
Our breeding pair of Clark’s anemonefish (Amphiprion clarkia) laid three separate batches of eggs this month. Before they could be eaten by the aquarium inhabitants, we examined the various developmental stages under the microscope.
Linckia multifora sea stars
SS1 (large specimen) – a small decrease in the length of two arms was recorded.
SS3 (large specimen) – growing at a slower rate.