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WAMAS Tank of the Month


Tank Of The Month

January 2007

Inna Dzekunova (dzekunoi)

She came from Azerbaijan just to have a reef tank

About her Tank

So how big is the tank?

125 gallons.

Acrylic correct?


Non-standard equipment?

I run 2 skimmers 1 Euro-Reef (TS-22) and 1 Deltec (MCE-600) hangon. So together they do pretty good job. When I had just the Euro-Reef it was a little too small for the tank. The more I stocked the more I saw problems so I got the Deltec.

Do you add any additives?

I add 2-part… This Stuff (holds up bottle of WM-Research Calc-Max) It's just the very first I bought. It seems like it keeps the balance pretty fine. I was checking it (calcium and alkalinity) at first and it was fine, so now I'm not even checking it. Now I know that if I add a certain amount every two days everything is fine.

Any other additives?

Pretty much it. I used to add vitamins (seachem). It didn't seem to make much of a difference. It was more for me. I felt I am taking care of my tank.

What do you do for maintance?

: I sometimes change water and this is not scheduled it's more like art or feeling. I feel like I need to change I water. I feel like I need to do something and I do it. For hardware maintenance Sergei he is technical director so whatever is hardware it is him.

What do you feed the fish?

I feed Formula 1 flake, I feed home-made brew, I feed butterfly and angel food, I feed live food, Nori.

Tank Specs
Lights VHO 110 each
   2 actincs and 2 daylights
2 skimmers:
   Euro-Reef (TS-22)
   Deltec (MCE-600) hangon.
Return Pump
2 Sumps:
   1) Over flow and skimmer
   2) refugium and other skimmer
AC Jr.

What kind of live food?

Black worms, sometimes I bring brine shrimp… It's more for their entertainment I understand because it's not exactly the best for them. Watching them catch it.

Do you feed anything to the corals?

I used to now I don't feed them anything. Except for the sun coral and the dendro that doesn't want to open and of course I feed the anemones, I feed silverside or some krill. And the fish of course try to steal the food whenever I feed the anemones or corals. All the time I have to cover them. I have a little cut soda bottle which I cover the corals. Does not matter light or no light they come out and eat. And I specifically target feed the mandarin live food.

And he eats it?

Yes I take my grabber I grab live worms and take it to him and he eats from the grabber. As much as he wants and swims away.

Does the copperband also eat live black worms?

He loves live black worms. He eats all the frozen food I give them. He even will take silversides. Whatever I throw in the aquarium he comes first. Actually I thought he would be the gentlest fish in the tank. I realize he is very good at getting food and standing his ground.

Livestock (Fish)
Kole Tang
Yellow Tang
Hippo Tang
Flame Angel
Emperorer Angel
Green Mandarin
Clarkii Clown
2 Engineer Gobies
Royal Gramma

Whats your favorite thing in the tank?

(Pause)… Thing or fish?



If you knew you had to start another thank what one thing would you take out of this tank with you?

Mmmmm very hard question… I would take the long tentacle anemone.

The anemone

If only 1 thing, then I would start going after my fish.

How old is the tank?

It's one year old. It turned 1 at thanksgiving.

Is it 1 in a series of upgrades?

No it's the very first one. A lady was selling this tank and many many other things. It was freshwater. So buying it I was going to do a planted tank. And then Sergey, my husband, he said “I really want a reef". And I said “You know what, I really want a reef". So we started reading about it, and that's how it pretty much started.

Experience in the Hobby

So is this your first time doing a reef tank?


What do you like most about the hobby?

It calms me down.

Why do you say it calms you down?

Looking at the tank, being busy with the tank… just after work you know how it goes. I get home I clean and I'm busy busy busy and then I just sit and look and I'm happy. Another really really great thing about the hobby is the people. I've met more people through WAMAS that I like than in the many years of my life.

What's your least favorite thing?

You know, you know the answer…Money!!! Because of that I'm afraid I'll go broke. There's always something to buy I realize that it's endless.

Livestock (Inverts)
Skunk Cleaner Shrimp
Coral Banded Shrimp
Long Tentacle Anemone
Small bubble tip Anemone
Tapetum Anemone
Derasa Clam
Squamosa Clam
2 Crocea Clams

Who do you get most influnced by or where do you go to get information?

From the very beginning I hung out a lot at wet web media. Before I found wamas. Actually I found out about wamas on wet web media. I didn't know there was a reef club in our area before that. And then I can not name just one person. I mean every person can make a mistake. I really really like chips (flowerseller) advice. If it's not broke, don't fix it.

I had a wise professor of mine once say if you haven't made all the mistakes your not an expert.

We have a saying in Russian: A Fool learns from his own mistakes a smart person learns from others mistakes. You can take a different way you don't have to make all the mistakes. Everyone makes them at some point.

What about your tank makes it unique or different?

I don't think it's either unique or different. It's just the amount of love I put there. I'm absolutely positive there are many other tanks bigger than mine or more unique or better selection of live stock. Also it's not a uniqueness, but I'm trying to get captive raised corals. A majority of my things came from other reefers.

What's the oldest thing in your tank?

That finger leather which is shedding and the Long Tentacle Anemone. I got them both at the same time. Some corals I got from Nick's breakdown and approximately at the same time I got anemone and two clowns. I was quite foolish to get an anemone for a freshly setup tank but I was lucky. It just settled into the same spot and did not move. And it's very happy I'm sure. It was a pair of clowns and the female died it was very sad.

Are your fish named?


Was it you that named them or your kids?

Kids. Well I really like some names to. I actually name the Hippo, you know why?

No, Why?

People shouting Dory Dory, it made me sick… so I said his name is Spike! I said no Nemo names in my tank.

So they didn't name the clownfish Nemo?

NO it's a different clownfish they know better.

Do you feel like your kids are getting some education from the tank?

Yeah… they can distinguish angel from butterflies and they know that corals are different from anemones and they were doing science project for it here. I don't know how it came out. It was pretty simple. We took the Kenya tree and we cut some frags off. We put some with light and some without light and without light they died of course, and with light they recovered. We took pictures as they recovered. So it was a science project on the regeneration of corals. We were thinking about other project but did not have the time to arrange them. We were thinking about doing a project doing garlic as a treatment for ich, but then I would need to find fish that had ich and treat them with copper too and compare the condition and recovery. We're thinking for next year.

That's a really good idea.

And Anna is doing science fair project, she is 6. See those two papers. She shows green one and feeds the fish. Fish got used to when you show green one they are going to get fed. We are training them now. We'll show them pink and see if they can differentiate color. So we will show them green and feed them and pink and not feed them and see if after time they can differentiate between the two.


Where does your username come from?

Just stupid user name for networks. First few letters of last name, and then first letter of first name. It's my log in at NIH. And I didn't think I would hang around so I didn't spend time to figure out cool name.

If you could meet anybody dead or alive who would it be?

Can I name three?

No, name one.

Well I'm going to name two: Jesus Christ and Roger Waters.

Roger Waters… from Pink Floyd?


Football or basketball?

Horseback riding.

If you could go anywhere in the world where would you go?


The great barrier reef?

Yes, and the rain forest.

Where are you from originally?

Originally Azerbaijan...it's in the southern part of the former Soviet Union.

Scotch or Bourbon?


What is the last book you read?

Starcatcher by Dave Berry. It's about how Peter Pan begins.

What's your favorite TV program?

Mythbusters!!! We watch them all.

Have you ever written them an email?

NO but we have a myth. Our neighbor told us…. That if you shoot at a TV with a shotgun from 30' you will not shoot through the screen. He tried in his back yard…If you want to make the TV blow up you have to shoot from the back not the front.