Our Featured Tank


in the coral sea...
Rating - 100%
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Union Square, NY
Manhattan Reefs Featured Tank


(Warren Chung's) Reef Tank


When I was asked by Rich if I would submit my reef tank as Manhattan Reef's first Tank of the Month, I was bewildered, confused and humbled all at the same time.
My featured tank has only been up and running for 12 months and I owe a lot of credit and thanks to cali_reef who inspired me and has helped me along the arduous path of reef keeping.

I started keeping saltwater fish back in 1978. I was 16 years old and had gotten a part-time job at Petland Discounts down on Nassau Street.
Needless to say, I never got paid because my paycheck was always spent before hand.

As for reef tanks, I started out only a few years ago with a 29 gallon soft coral tank, progressed to a 55 gallon mixed reef tank and currently graduated to the 120 gallon SPS dominated tank that is featured.

System Profile:

Main tank : 120 gallon - 48"L x 24"W x 24"H, Euro-braced Glass Cages tank with low iron glass for the front and side viewing panels
Connected tank: 102 gallon - 39.5"L x 25"W x 24"H, European styled tank
Sump: 30 gallon - 36"L x 12W x 16"H, Standard AGA tank
Total System Volume: 252 gallons

Water Movement:

Water is drained via two 1.5" Durso standpipes located in the oversized overflow box. Water is then returned to the tank with a Reeflo Dart. The Dart is plumbed with a manifold that tees off some of the flow to the connected 102 gallon tank.
Additional circulation is provided with a closed loop system incorporating an Oceans Motions 4-Way and an additional Reeflo Dart. The main tank has two 1.5" drain holes drilled on the back panel for this purpose and the return flow is plumbed over the top of the tank with 1" PVC pipes ending in four Oceans Motions 1" Flexi-Nozzles.

Water Parameters:

I have been fortunate with my low nutrient levels coupled with my less than ideal husbandry. Water drains to a couple of 100 micron filter socks. I rarely vacuum detritus and perform only 10% water changes once a month. I use RO/DI water for all water changes and evaporation needs. I do not employ the use of ozone or UV sterilization but I do use Hydro-Carbon and Phosban on a continuous basis.

I use Instant Ocean salt mix with the following additional additives:
I add a small amount of SeaChem Iodide once a month to aid the shrimps in molting. I also add recommended amounts of SeaChem Strontium and Magnesium on alternating basis once a month during the routine water change.

Temperature: 78 to 81 degrees
Specific Gravity: 1.025
pH: 8.5 (day), 8.23 (night)
Calcium: 420 - 440 ppm
Alkalinity: 9.0 - 9.3 dKH
Magnesium: 1250 - 1300 ppm
PO4: 0 - .02
NO3: 0 - .02


I might be the poster child for the phrase "under skimmed". A Deltec AP600 fed with a Mag 2 pump draining into an Aqua-C waste collector is currently utilized.
When the tank first evolved and did not have the 102 gallon tank connected, an Aqua-C EV-120 was utilized and then swapped for the Deltec AP600. When I connected the 102 gallon tank, all corals and clams came out of the main tank. Only an additional 48 lbs of live rock and six Bi-color Anthias were added. Additional bio-load is minimal and I do plan to upgrade to a larger Deltec in the near future.
Tank is monitored with a Pinpoint pH monitor for fluctuation. a Milwaukee pH controller guides a K2R calcium reactor which provides for calcium and alkalinity stability, a Phosban reactor is utilized with 120 grams of Phosban and a My Reef Creations fluidized reactor holds about 1 liter of Hydro-Carbon. One lone 20 watt Maxi-Jet 1200 teed three ways feeds the three reactors.
Two Via Aqua 250 watt titanium heaters and a Pacific Coast 1/4 hp chiller controlled by an Digital Aquatics Reef Keeper ensures that my tank temperature remains stable. I also utilize two 4" Ice Cap variable speed fans in the canopy to aid in heat exchange due to the lighting.


The lighting that I use in the main tank is pretty simple. Two Ice Cap 250 watt electronic ballast power two XM 10,000K single ended metal halide bulbs on a pair of PFO parallel reflectors. For actinic supplement, I use an Ice Cap 660 ballast to power two 46.5" 110 watt URI super actinic VHO bulbs.
My lighting schedule starts with:
Actinics turn on at 2:00 pm
Right metal halide turns on at 3:45 pm
Left metal halide turns on at 4:00 pm
Right metal halide turns off at 9:45 pm
Left metal halide turns off at 10:00 pm
Actinics turn off at 12:00 am
FishBowl moonlights left on 24/7 on a controller simulating the moon phase cycle.

During the spring till fall, I normally increase the photo period by two hours for both the actinics and the metal halides but with the ongoing ridiculous electrical rates, I might just leave the photo period as is.


The main tank is mostly Acropora corals but there are some Montiporas, Pocilloporas, Seriatoporas and Stylophoras. One large Squamosa clam also resides in the tank while most of the remaining clams were moved to the connected 102 gallon tank. The occasional LPS, ricordia, yuma and soft corals were also moved over to the 102 gallon tank


About 220 snails containing a mixture of Astreas, Golden Astreas, Ceriths, Trochus and Mexican Turbos.
8 shrimps consisting of Cleaner, Fire and Peppermint species.
A few emerald crabs that survived an interceptor treatment.


Red Sea Regal Angel
Golden Pygmy Angel
Magnificent Foxface
Copperband Butterfly
Pair of A. Percula
Trio of Red Sea Anthias (looks like squamipinnis)
Marshall Island Bartlett's Anthias
Red Sea Fridmani
Yellow Coris Wrasse
Six Line Wrasse




Final thoughts:

Reef Keeping starts out as an interest, progresses into a challenge then becomes an addiction and either it results in happy karma with the never ending open wallet or frustration where everything is sold or trashed.
Having forums like Manhattan Reefs and Long Island Reef Association is like having an extended family with a specific interest. I have gained plenty of knowledge and have met a number of very nice friends and am a proud member of both organizations.
I personally obtain great satisfaction from all of my tanks and have a wonderful wife of 19 years that tolerates my aquatic obsession not to mention all the money spent on this crazy hobby.
I currently maintain the featured 120 gallon reef tank with a connected 102 gallon mixed reef tank, a 90 gallon FOWLR tank, a 58 gallon goldfish tank. a 12 gallon zoos dominated nano-cube and a 55 gallon FOWLR tank (in my office at work).
Last edited:


Rating - 99.5%
442   2   0
Warren, such a masterpiece in so little time. It'll be amazing to watch it all grow out even more. Please keep us updated as you add more coral and/or growout pix.

Great job.



Rating - 100%
64   0   0
Howell, NJ
Congrats warren....

just wanted to congratulate u on the tank of the month.. youve done a great job with your tank in such little time.. an inspiration to all of us here at MR.com.... thanks and enjoy it grow even more...

House of Laughter

Super Moderator
Staff member
Rating - 100%
310   0   0
Ossining, NY

I wanted to sincerely apologize to Warren and the mebership for the technical difficulty we had with the Featured Tank - it has since been updated and the links set properly to appear in the thread - again, sorry for the inconvenience and enjoy our first MR Featured Tank.