Haven't changed the feeding at this point. Still just a cube of homemade every two to three days.
My 54 has been an uphill battle at every turn and the more things that I change the more I realize that I've set myself up for failure from the beginning. I had no plan or understanding during start-up and now I'm paying for it.
Today, I finally gave in on a losing battle for my enormous Monti plate. My plate grew so large that it was overshadowing my whole tank. I had fragged four 5-6" pieces off the plate. I figured being 18" across and 12" wide that it'd be fine. Since then the plate has slowly bleached out and started to rot. Today, I had to move the plate in order to remove a rock from the rear of the tank. In doing so the plate crumbled at my gentle touch. I knew it was time to go, and sadly, I removed the wasted coral.
I removed the rock in the back, but not before nearly having a catastrophic rockslide. It was then I realized that my original aquascape has been the cause of nearly all of my issues: water flow, detritus buildup, coral shadowing, fish swim patterns, coral placement availability, etc.
While removing the rock, I uncovered another rock with an orange sponge around 8-10 inches around and two inches deep. Very cool, living in utter darkness.
I removed the large rock, and rearranged the small rock giving me enough space to add a Koralia 750 facing toward the bottom middle of the front of the tank. I'm hoping the extra gph
will help with the sandbed nasties. Preliminary results were sub-par.
The removed rock was transferred into the Mantis tank.
During the removal if the plate, and trying to stabilize the structure the birdsnest (around 16") fell and fragged about 6 pieces. The bottom 4-6" of the birdsnest is completely dead since the top portion doesn't allow light down to it.
In all reality the BN needs to be relocated. It has nowhere to grow up so its flattening out and starting to shadow the other corals. It's also dying inside. I'm half temped to frag it into 30 pcs, and sell it the the LFS
At one point today, I nearly posted my tank on Craigslist and just let it go. I've got so much invested, time, sweat, money that I hate to see it go. I didn't post it and I'm thinking of an upgrade to a 90 or so so that I can re-scape and redo everything now that I understand what I want and need. The 54 is just a pain for everything.
I'm done ranting. Here's some pics of the accidental frags and some life that popped out tonight.