I see Tridacna clams available
for sale on websites for nano
tanks. Wouldn’t these clams
get too large?
I have a 12-gallon nano tank,
and everything has been going
very well so far. I have enough
now that I would like to try
adding some fish. Can you recommend
I can’t think of a species of the
very popular Tridacna clams
that would not eventually get
too large for a nano tank. For
many species get too large for
even much larger tanks. I think the idea here
is that Tridacna clams are photosynthetic
animals that grow slowly. It gives the nano-reef
aquarist a chance to experience these animals
at a small size. As long as you get clams that
are free from parasites, they are relatively
hardy, and they sure look great in a reef tank.
If you enjoy your experience enough, you will
eventually invest in a tank large enough to
house your growing clam. If not, the clams
are not without value, and you won’t have any
problem finding a home for your clam once it
grows too large. Anyone who has ever derided
anyone for having the personality of a clam
never kept a Tridacna clam.
The short answer is that yes, the clams
do get too large for a nano tank, but it takes
time, and you get to experience the joy of
keeping these animals for quite a while—even
in a nano tank! The major obstacle would
be keeping the calcium concentration high
enough so the clam can grow its shell.
The easiest way to keep a nano
tank is without any fish. In a
mini-reef tank, the invertebrates
are the big attraction. Even a
akes a big difference in the bioload
on a tank. Since fish have a faster metabolism
than invertebrates, their biological impact is
greater. For that reason I only suggest small
fish, and an ideal choice is the neon goby. You
could keep about three of these without too
great a problem. There are two reasons neon
gobies (several species that look very similar
in the Elacatinus genus) are so great: First,
of the Sea
I recently read an article about
a pilot being shot down in the
ific during the Second World
War and that he was devoured by a school
of small fish believed to be triggerfish.
Would they really do that? It is hard to
believe that it happened. Triggers are my
Tridacna crocea; all Tridacna clams grow too large for the nano reef, but it takes a while.
these are very small fish, and that limits their
impact on the water in the aquarium. Second,
neon gobies don’t move around a lot, so they
conserve energy, and that also helps lessen
their impact on the aquarium water.
Even with neon gobies, you need to make
partial water changes at least once a week.
With only invertebrates, you can get by with
less-frequent water changes, especially if you
are using kalkwasser. With fish, however, the
equation is quickly changed, and weekly water
changes are essential.