The nano-reef tank is set up.
Otter the fish-pusher went with me to a fish store that had just broken down a wall of reef tanks, and I got some really fabulous live rock. It’s covered in purple coralline algae, which is apparently the good stuff, and lots of squidgy little bits. (I have to admit, it is visually gorgeous, and since there are already infinitesimal feather duster worms on my glass, apparently it was VERY live.) Otter and the fish-guy there–who was talking to her with the desperate joy of one who has found someone who shares his belief in the importance of squashy rocks, and that someone is a really hot chick to boot–picked out a good array. Otter donated some live sand, and I went home and set up.
I’ll take photos at some point, but since at the moment it looks like a brightly-lit wall of silt (and a couple of tiny coils of worms) with a purple rock in the foreground, there’s not much to see.
Also, I have to get the rocks arranged to my satisfaction. Which they aren’t yet. It’s like wet Zen gardening. You’d think there’d be a limit to the permutations of where you can plop rocks in a six gallon tank, but I haven’t yet. The first arrangement was too aggressively symmetrical.
I may need a hammer.
OTTER: "There are bristleworms with the live sand."
URSULA: Um…is that good?
OTTER: It’s good. It’s very good. You want those.
URSULA: Yay bristleworms!
OTTER: But don’t touch them.
URSULA: Why not?
OTTER: They have little rows of stinging cells.
OTTER: It’s not bad! Really! Like a bee or something!
Now taking bets on how likely it is that I will go down in history as the first human being killed by accidentally poking a bristleworm.