Purple Pincushion Sea Urchin ("Spike"):
I absolutely love this guy. He's always crawling around and eating algae. He has thousands of little feet waving around between his spines. Very cool to watch!
Spike under the blue light. Note all the shells and rocks on his back (why he's sometimes called a "Collector" or "Pincushion" urchin).
Up the back wall to clean up algae! I never clean the back wall, allowing a little algae growth for my vegetarian critters. I also stuff a big kelp leaf in the rocks once in awhile. It breaks into little pieces and the fish go nuts.
Taking off with a clump of zoas (Lily). I quickly put the coral back. No coral was harmed in this photo. Spike sometimes gets a little "carried" away with his cleaning. Ha ha!
Scopas Tang ("Toby"):
He is sooo beautiful. I'm happy to have a tang in the tank again! I went with the Scopas tang since they are peaceful, smaller than other tangs, hardier than other tangs, and voracious algae eaters. They are similar to Yellow Tangs but less aggressive and a titch smaller.
Casey, our Flameback Angel, is hazing poor Toby, the new guy and low on the totem pole. Casey chases him around a lot at feeding time. It's not constant though and Casey tends to settle down aggression-wise with time (he used to pick on a lot of tankmates when first added; he's mellowed out over time). Luckily, Toby doesn't seemed too phased by Casey's bullying.
Toby is eating well--loves kelp and plankton. I've been trying to fatten him up; he's super skinny!
Toby, our Scopas Tang. I love the pale cream-brown, tiny stripes and white spots! Plus, his eyes can change color (from brown, shown here, to yellow). His fins are gorgeous too, like sails. Under the blue light, there's lots of blues and magentas that come out under the brown color. Who says this is a drab tang?
Casey bullying poor Toby.
Red-headed Goby ("Tiny Tim"):
Tiny, hardy, and reef-safe, I couldn't resist this little guy. This was a true test of how peaceful our tank is! He's less than an inch long and could easily be picked on or eaten by several of the fish in the tank. Not to fear, no one bothers Tiny Tim. He loves to hide in the rocks but is usually out front and center! He's not nearly as shy as I thought he would be. He grabs tiny pieces of meat floating by at feeding time.
Isn't he beautiful? Red head, yellow eyes, blue stripes, and see-through body, wow!
Tiny Tim darting in and out of rocks. He is sooooo cute!
Felipe (the Third), our Royal Gramma:
Surprisingly, we had bad luck with our first 2 royal grammas, despite their reputation for being very hardy. I think third time's a charm! We just love the royal gramma. He's hardy, peaceful, and strikingly colored. Felipe is always out and about, not nearly as shy as the others before him. Our tank just didn't feel complete without him.