AquaNerd’s Top 10 Stories from 2014


Phew…2014 is almost over. And while it has been a fun year, it has also been an exhausting one. But, we made it, and we can look forward to the brand new adventures that await for us in 2015. Before we can move on, however, we must pay our respects to the passing year with a robust recap of the top 10 stories that were featured on the AquaNerd Blog during that time. So, without further adieu, here is our list of posts we got the most mileage out of.

Please keep in mind that this list is just the most viewed of our articles from 2014 and are not our top picks. We will have a separate article featuring our favorite stories of the year.

10 Most Expensive Tropical Fish Named
This was a fun article, but we’re still not sure how it made it to the number one spot on our countdown. This article featured the randomly organized “10 most expensive tropical fish”, which included the $30,000 peppermint angel fish, the $100,000 freshwater polka dot stingray and the $400,000 platinum arowana. As with any internet list, it was far from complete, as it left out several really expensive fish, and obviously plenty of fish who could be deemed priceless.

Maxspect Gyre Pitted Against EcoTech VorTech Pumps in This Flow Comparison Video
Since the Maxspect debut of the Gyre was so popular (it also made our list…see below), it was only a matter of time before someone pitted it against the other top dog on the market, the VorTech MP40. A prototype tester of the pump put a single Gyre up against a pair of MP40s, showing how different the two pumps emit their streams of water.

New Dual Pump Controller on the Way from Jebao
What can we say, people love Jebao. So, it should come as no surprise that aquarists fawned over the idea of a new Dual Pump Controller that was capable of handling the WP Series and FS Type next generation pumps, among several other models of course. The controller added a ton of functionality to the Jebao lineup, letting all of those popular and inexpensive pumps flex their muscles a bit.

EcoTech Marine Announces 3rd Generation Radion XR30w
EcoTech usually waits until MACNA to announce new products, but they uncharacteristically debuted their 3rd gen Radion XR30w way back in January. The fixture’s overall look got a refresher, gaining illuminated tactile buttons that are easier to see. On top of that, the lights gained new LED colors (indigo/UV for the XR30w…previously only available in the Pro model), as well as the inclusion of Cree XP-G2 and Osram Oslon Square LEDs. Add on some price drops for other models and you’ve got yourself one popular story.

Epic Lego Reef Spied at Interzoo
This got the most Facebook shares on our site, but somehow still came in at 5th in our lineup. At Interzoo, Tropical Marine Centre showed off a jaw-droppingly awesome LEGO reef complete with LEGO fish, LEGO corals, and LEGO invertebrates. It was every nerd’s wildest dream, as the models were incredibly designed and executed to perfection.

Maxspect Jumps Into the Water Pump Market with Interesting New Gyre Generator
This had to be the single most ground-breaking story of the year. Maxspect debuted their Gyre pump, which totally shook up how aquarists thought about water flow in their tanks. Instead of turbulent flow aimed at random places in the tank, the Gyre created a circular, gyre-like flow that proved to be extremely effective. Videos and user reviews have placed this pump’s performance right at the top of the charts, and more models are expected early on in 2015.

Esquire’s Top 10 List of “World’s Coolest Aquariums” Fails to Impress on Many Fronts
We had to correct Esquire on their attempt to conjure up a list of the 10 coolest aquariums in the world. While they had several nice, privately owned aquariums, they were far from the coolest. So, we added five more to their top-notch candidates. They included the spectacular aquariums from Chingchai, David Saxby, Pieter van Sijlekom, Steve Weast, and Paul Brun. Of course, our list is partial to reef aquaria.

Lionfish Shown to Tolerate Freshwater in School Science Project
This was one of the more disturbing discoveries about our favorite invasive fish, the lionfish. It was shown, through a controversial science project, that lionfish were quite tolerant of freshwater environments. Through some experimentation, lionfish were shown to be able to tolerate water with a minimum salinity of 6 parts per thousand, a huge step away from the normal 35ppt found in ocean waters. This discovery doesn’t bode well for Florida fisheries, especially since rivers and estuaries are now no longer off limits.

AquaIllumination Unleashes Their New Prime WiFi LED Fixture at MACNA
This was one of the bigger announcements out of MACNA 2014. AquaIllumination debuted their Prime LED fixtures, which were the first of the brand to feature WiFi technology. Previously introduced fixtures in the AI lineup have all used proprietary wireless technology. The Prime fixtures have yet to become available to the masses, so there isn’t a ton of information floating around about them yet. That said, we’ve been told that they have similar LED pucks to the other products from AquaIllumination.

The Comline 9001 is a Teeny Tiny New Skimmer from Tunze
Interzoo was a huge platform for launching new products in 2014. Tunze brought a lot to the table, as they always do, by announcing their smallest protein skimmer yet, the Comline 9001. This nano skimmer is suitable for aquariums 20-140 liters (5.3 to 37 gallons) in volume, and is said to have a sub-$100 price tag.


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