Space can become tight under just about any tank that isn’t six feet long or longer, and doesn’t have a dedicated fish room. The equipment we want for our setups often exceeds the amount of space available, and this forces hobbyists to pick and choose what can be incorporated into a setup and what has to be sacrificed. For some, ditching the refugium in favor of a sump and protein skimmer is a no brainer. After all, the refugium isn’t a required tool for having a successful reef aquarium, but it certainly helps to have one. If you feel the need to have both, but real estate is slim, try to incorporate a dual level design, where the refugium is located above the sump and skimmer, feeding back into the sump. It may not be the perfect design, and it may look cluttered, but when space is limited we have to improvise.