Preparation of Solutions

Description of how marine salts were mixed and what equipment was used.

Direct quote from the S-15™ Report™


1 – Container and paddle for preparing solutions:
A six gallon polyethylene pail and large polyethylene paddle were prepared before use by rinsing with one gallon of 1% nitric acid for 1 1/2 to 2 minutes, draining thoroughly, then rinsing three times with demonized water with through draining between rinses.

2 – Containers for storing and shipping prepared solutions:
52 gallon polyethylene bottles were treated sequentially with 500 ml f 1% nitric acid, shaking well, then transferring thoroughly from bottle to bottle before discarding. Each bottle was then individually rinsed twice with 200 ml portions of demonized water, then finally rinsed with the specific salt solution before being filled with it to make the solutions to be analyzed.

3 – Containers for storing prepared solutions for visual examination:
26 Pyrex screw-cap bottles (Teflon[®]-lined caps) were prepared as in paragraph 2- above.

Preparation of Solutions:

1 – 26 factory-sealed containers of the various synthetic sea salts as described on pages 1,2, and 3 had been received and were collectively assigned Anresco File identification:

2 – One at a time, each of the packages were carefully opened at one end, and 60-700 gin were transferred to correspondingly labeled ziploc[®] polyethylene bags. Original packages were resealed with plastic tape.

3 – From these ziplock[®] bags, 500.0 gm of salts were sequentially transferred to the pail, and demonized water was added to make solutions as specified on the labels.

4 – The prepared solutions were transferred to correspondingly labeled plastic and glass bottles by means of a polyethylene siphon pump. The latter had been acid-rinsed, then rinsed with demonized water, then rinsed with the subject solutions before use.


1 – Solutions were prepared at Anresco, Inc.
2 – One 1-gal plastic bottle of each of the solutions was shipped to the Environmental Trace Substances Research Center at the University of Missouri, 5450 S. Sinclair Road, Columbia, MO 65203 and another was retained at Anresco, Inc.

All metals and boron, silicon, selenium and arsenic were assayed at the Research Center by ICP with solutions diluted either 1:3 or 1:10. Whenever the values derived from the 1:10 dilutions were at least 10 times the detection limit for the specific element, these values were preferentially accepted. For certain on the elements chelation extraction’s at pH 3 and pH 6 preceded ICP assays. Cobalt was determined by graphite furnace atomic absorption.

3 – Moistures in salts, specific gravities and pH’s of the solutions, carbonates, bi-carbonates, sulfates, chlorides, bromides, iodides and phosphates were run at Anresco, Inc. using AOAC procedures.

The S-15™ Report™ is a milestone.

For the first time in history, concerned individuals put their money where it was needed. Funding for the S-15™ Report™ was provided by Global Scientific Publications. After decades of the colorful promotions for various marine salts, we finally have a definitive reference point on which to judge which marine salts compare favorably with natural sea water, and which do not measure up. We can now compare scientific results to what is printed on various packages and offered in colorful advertisements. We can better understand why some marine salts can perform better than others.


Synthetic Sea Water Vs. Synthetic Sea Water

Hobbyists and Dealers:

Synthetic Sea Water vs. Synthetic Sea Water

Water Quality Starts with Your Water™ – A good synthetic sea salt will at
least approximate the major, minor trace ions found in natural sea water.


The S-15™ Report™ is the first and only independent comparative assay of 15 different brands of artificial or synthetic sea salts. It was commissioned and paid for by Global Scientific Publications. GSP is not in any way affiliated with any manufacturer of sea salts. Nor, is any manufacturer of synthetic sea salts associated with Global Scientific Publications.


Global Scientific Publications is composed of concerned individual’s world wide. They wanted to know the reasons why salt water aquarium keeping has a continuing negative reputation internationally.

For the first time, S-15™ Report™ is offered in MARINE AQUARIST™.

The same nagging questions persist, decade after decade. Some of these questions or statements are:

1) “All my fish died. My aquarium is in the attic or garage”.

2) “My water is fine. My water is fine. All my fish died?”

3) “Are salt water aquariums more difficult to keep than freshwater?”

Some realities cannot be denied. The majority of retail stores internationally promote low cost items in an effort to keep customers in the hobby. Some retailers are now in the business of selling their customers replacement fish. How many replacement fish are customers expected to purchase, without leaving the hobby?


Another reality is that marine salts that are offered at ultra low prices cannot contain proven essential elements, as the manufacturer cannot afford to include them.


Misleading and/or inaccurate packaging has continually plagued and confused the entry level marine aquarist. The result is usually failure to keep a successful marine aquarium. This contributes dramatically to the long recognized problem of animal mortality. Marine animals should live well in captivity for years (decades in some cases), not just a few months.


There has been an inescapable history of deception foisted on the buying public by some manufacturers of base products. Some hobbyists are led to believe that additives, supplements, resins, carbons, skimmers, ozone, redox, expensive electronic controllers, specialized lighting and/or complex filter systems can correct problems or deficiencies generated by inferior base products. Marine salts can be classified as a base product.


Saltwater fish and invertebrates come from the ocean. When kept in captivity, the vast majority of ocean, tropical marine and reef invertebrates are kept in some type of synthetic seawater medium. If you use a marine salt that:
a) Exhibits periodic or consistent deficiencies.
b) Varies dramatically from package to package.
c) Is excessive in metals, silicates, phosphates, nitrates, ammonia or other ions.
d) Does not mix to or maintain the proper pH.


It is possible that many forms of marine life simply will not adjust to such unnatural conditions.


As an aquarist, chances are you have been sold failure!


A good synthetic sea salt will at least approximate the major, minor and trace ions found in natural seawater (NSW), with lower amounts of nitrates, phosphates, silicates and ammonia. It should include a tap water dechlorinator and pH buffer (ability to mix to and maintain the proper pH).

The first, and only, extensive, in depth and scientifically validated assay of 15 different brands of marine salts has been completed and the results have been compiled in the S-15™ Report™.

A superior version could include a powerful pH buffer, higher amounts of calcium, sulfate and offer: iodide, iron and select trace elements that are organically bound, and include various water conditioners. 

The first and only, extensive, in-depth and scientifically validated assay of 15 different brands of marine salts has been completed and the results have been compiled in the S-15™ Report™ by Anresco, Inc.


Factory sealed packages of marine salts were forwarded to Anresco Inc. All samples were mixed with de-ionized water and the pH was measured one hour after hydration. Most non metals were then determined.


Liquid samples were forwarded to and evaluated by the University of Missouri, a US. Government prime contract testing laboratory, Environmental Trace Substance and Technology for testing. All salts were normalized to 3.50% solids (specific gravity of 1.026) for equal comparison. No claims are made. Only quantifiable facts are offered for unbiased and relative results.

How to Judge a Good Marine Salt


A good marine salt is the first and most essential requirement
for a successful marine fish or reef aquarium.



The majority of marine life sold to hobbyists does not survive to its full genetic life expectancy.


It is a fact that most amateur marine aquarium hobbyists believe it is hard to maintain a healthy saltwater aquarium. Why does this negative belief persist?


In reality, it is not difficult to keep and enjoy a healthy marine fish or reef aquarium. All you need is the proper information, products, and a little effort.


If you place your pets in a marginal environment, they live marginal lives. The composition of your saltwater is the single most important component of your marine fish or reef aquarium.


Nothing -lights, filters, foods, ozone, skimmers, supplements, controllers, etc. – can remedy bad saltwater.


A good marine salt should incorporate many essential factors to be considered acceptable for keeping a variety of delicate exotic marine life in captivity for extended periods.


A good marine salt should:


      Be similar in composition to the major ions found in natural seawater. Or alternatively contain slightly higher or enhanced amounts of calcium, sulfate, strontium and/or include a strong pH buffer, or both. Solutions that lack sufficient amounts of essential major elements produce dramatically unnatural conditions. It is unreasonable to believe captive marine life can avoid stress and adjust to unbalanced conditions.


Similar to the major ions in natural seawater (NSW).



Score + 20.


2. Contain sufficient bromide. Evidence suggests there may be a beneficial synergistic relationship between bromide and iodide.

Contain bromide similar to NSW.



Score + 4.


3. Contain sufficient strontium. Strontium has an interaction with calcium and is essential for the growth and development of corals.

Contains strontium similar to NSW.



Score + 4.


4. Contain sufficient molybdate. Molybdate is beneficial for reef and marine fish aquariums.

Contains proper amounts of molybdate.



Score + 3.


5. Be low in phosphates. Phosphates are naturally occurring waste ions that increase with time in a closed system. Phosphates can foment the growth of undesirable non beneficial algae and degrade basic water quality.

Low in phosphates.



Score + 4.


6. Be low in silicates. High amounts of silicates can increase the growth of diatoms or brown algae.

Low in silicates.



Score + 3.


7. Be low in metals. Excessive amounts of metals can be devastating to closed marine fish or reef aquariums.

Low in metals.



Score + 5.


8. Be a dry formula. Wet or damp marine salts are usually unstable and mix to a high pH. They can take a long time to dissolve or mix completely.

Dry formula.



Score + 7.


9. Be of uniform particle size. A separation of ingredients during the manufacture, packaging, transporting and handling may result from non-uniform particle size marine salts.

Uniform particle size.



Score + 10.


10. Have contents that match the package claims. Many marine salt packages misinform hobbyists and dealers about the actual contents of their product.

Matching contents to package claims.



Score + 10.


11. Be consistent from package to package. Inconsistent or constantly deficient marine salt solutions may not be appropriate for long term keeping of many types of marine fish or delicate reef invertebrates.

Consistent formula.



Score + 10.


12. Mix to the proper pH. High pH when hydrated has no relationship to the pH holding abilities of marine salts. High pH can stress captive marine fish and sensitive reef invertebrates by producing a condition of osmotic imbalance. Toxic ammonia increases with high pH.

Mix to the proper pH.



Score + 10.


13. Contain slightly higher or enhanced amounts of calcium and strontium. Enhanced calcium and strontium levels can benefit many marine fish and reef invertebrates.

Enhanced amounts of calcium and strontium.



Score + 10.


A consistently formulated, uniform particle sized marine salt that is similar to NSW and is low in metals, phosphates, silicates and mixes to the proper pH are basic requirements for a good marine salt that can promote the success of marine fish or reef aquariums.


Key to score:

Scores indicate weighting value of importance. However, all aspects and points should be considered important in comparing products to natural seawater (NSW). Scores indicated herein are not based on comparison between products, but to natural seawater.


Water quality starts with your water™ Information used in this evaluation is from the S-15 Report™. The S-15 Report™ was prepared by Anresco Laboratories, an independent third party laboratory. The majority of testing was performed by the University of Missouri, a US Government prime contract testing laboratory, Environmental Trace Substances Research Center, Dept. of Environmental Science & Technology.


1 Sample tested separately from the S-15™ Report™.

Salt Water Aquarium Fish Keeping

A fantastic hobby with many challenges. 

From the reef to your aquarium. What a trip.


Marine fish come from the tropical oceans of the world. They are subjected to a variety of handling or mishandling procedures that when understood should boggle the mind.




1. Being scooped up from your home (natural environment) into a net, hopefully without being drugged with a poison.


2. Being transported in a small plastic bag to a holding facility. Sometimes being transported with many other fish in the same bag.


3. Being put into a large tank with hundreds of other newly collected fish. Some of these other fish could be aggressive, agitated, stressed or sick.


4. Being picked out, and again being put into a plastic bag for a journey to a foreign country. Sometimes this journey takes 40+ hours.


5. Being put into an importer or wholesalers tanks. Some of these tanks do not have proper temperature control. Some importers’ tanks are contaminated with disease from the last incoming shipment or two. Some importers’ tanks have poor water conditions. Some importers use the lowest cost marine salts in an effort to increase their profits. This is the time to start using the best quality products available.


6. Being netted, and again put into a plastic bag for delivery to a local retail store or being air shipped to a distant city.


7. Being put into a dealer’s tanks, some of which are contaminated from the dozens of fish that were in the same system hours or days before. Hopefully the dealers’ tanks are clean, disease free and with high quality water.


8. Arriving in your home. This entire chain of events can take place in 6 to 10 days.


Three things are certain:


1) This shows how strong these wild animals truly are.


2) Some aquarium pets will get sick because they are totally stressed out.


3) Use only the BEST equipment available to enhance the lives of your animals and your enjoyment of them.


Marine fish display an unimaginable variety of colors, unique behavior and individual personalities. Most make great pets.When shopping for new marine pets, it is essential that you purchase the healthiest fish that accept a variety of foods. These fish will be in the store’s best tanks. Salt water aquariums are more demanding than freshwater. High quality heaters and accessories must be used in marine tanks. There is less dissolved oxygen in salt water than fresh water. Higher efficiency filters must be employed. Salt water aquariums require more lighting than fresh and require the use of marine salt.


A variety of salt mixes abound. Unfortunately most marine salts are not true seawater substitutes. Marine fish come from the ocean and should be kept in an environment that resembles ocean water. Check the S-15™ Report™ for information regarding which marine salts are worth consideration.

Brand Score 0-100
Marine Environment® 100 pts
BIO-SEA® 90 pts
Coral Marine® 79 pts
Tropic Marin® 29 pts
Instant Ocean®, Kent &Reef Crystals® 26 pts
Coralife® 23 pts


Trickle Filters, still the Best

BI OX® is specifically designed for bio-filters. It increases dissolved oxygen, removes harmful gases and cultivates maximum essential nitrifying bacteria.


BI OX® dramatically increases the carrying capacity and working ability of any existing trickle, tray or canister filter. Less BI OX® is required than other mediums.
High Efficiency, Low Cost Superior Filter Medium

Not all filters and filter mediums are created equal.

The aquarium industry is totally unique. Some people can have a perfectly operating aquarium, then read something about a new filter, light, food or marine salt. Then abruptly change what was once working trouble free. Filters are a prime example.

30 years ago, we used undergravel filters. They worked; however, there were draw backs. Then there were outside hanging filters and canister filters. They worked, but again there were draw backs. Then came the trickle filter. This is the easiest to use and most efficient. Then came the fluidized bed filter. This replaced many trickle filters. It was soon realized that fluidized bed filters produce product water that is very low in precious dissolved oxygen. Water from a fluidized sand filter should be run through a trickle filter to bring oxygen levels back to standard or above saturation. Then came the plenum filter. The plenum filter received too much hype in magazines. It has proved to be of questionable value and in come cases, a time bomb. A well designed under or over the aquarium trickle filter with BI OX® remains the best filter for both fresh and salt water aquariums.

History of filter mediums

The first mediums were from Europe. They have been around for over 100 years. They are usually made from ceramic and resemble noodles that are about 1/2″ – 3/4″ long. These shapes are not suited for aquatic application. Water channels through the rings creating low oxygen.

Mediums from other industries were introduced to aquarist’s in the late 1980’s. They were being used in a variety of applications from: cooling water in reactors to collecting dust in chimneys. None of these were designed for aquarium applications and their results were poor.

BIO-BALL is a common name used to refer to plastic balls. Plastic balls for the most part appear visually similar. Close inspection reveals significant differences.

The standard bio-ball is designed with a flat center plate. Attached to this plate are rods. Between each rod is a small hole. The basic problem with bio-balls is that water channels over and around them. The holes are too small to allow drops of water to go through them. The result is a trickle filter that is 40-%-70% dry or useless. Over sized filters are required to compensate for this mediums poor design.

BI OX® is a totally unique design that has earned US and international patents. BI OX® allows 90%+ of system water to come into contact with its textured surface. Smaller filters can be used to maintain larger aquariums. Only BI OX® has the ability to remove large portions of waste gases. It offers the most usable surface area™, allowing the maximum colonization of essential nitrifying bacteria. BI OX® also saturates fresh and salt water aquarium water with precious dissolved oxygen.

One gal. (325 pccs.) of BI OX® Super (20mm x 25mm) will maintain 45 gallons of salt water vs. 16 gallons of 1″ bio balls. One gal. (62 pcs.) of BI OX® Regular (40 min x 45 mm) will maintain 30 gallons of salt water vs. 9.2 gallons of 2″ bio balls.

Quarantine. Disease Control. Copper Sulfate


All new arrivals should be placed in a quarantine tank for minimum of 21 days. This allows you to observe your new pet and check for any signs of disease, such as velvet or white spot. If marine fish get these diseases, and they are in a reef or invertebrate tank, it will be most difficult to treat them.

The quarantine tank can be a temporary aquarium of 10 to 25 gallons, depending on the number and size of the fish you purchase. The quarantine tank MUST have perfect water quality. Your new fish are the most stressed they will ever be. Now is the time to take care of them.


I have used the following procedure for years and find it highly efficient and cost effective.

1.  Place your quarantine tank away from a traffic area. Allow your new pets time to adjust to your home and their next tank, your display aquarium. Include a rock or two in the quarantine tank so your new pets can hide if they wish and feel secure.

1 DROP™ Copper sulfate has proven to be the most effective cure for C. irritants / white spot and Oodonium / velvet for marine fish. Each drop brings a treatment or hospital tank to .15 ppm. This is the proper therapeutic dose. Maintain this level for 21 days. DO NOT use carbon or resins. They will remove copper from solution.

Check the level of copper every 48 hours with a high quality test kit. LaMotte #AG-CLR (7367) is a very good copper test kit. 1 DROP™ is NOT CHELATED. It can be removed easily or allowed to dissipate naturally.

AVOID CHELATED COPPER. Chelated copper is formulated to stay in aquariums for weeks. It is difficult to remove. Special test kits are required to monitor high treatment levels or test for residual amounts left in solution.

2.  I use two submersible pumps in the quarantine tank. One is for circulation within the tank. The other pumps water from the tank up to an over the tank bucket with a PVC fitting in the bottom. This fitting or drain allows water back into the tank. This an above-the-tank trickle filter.

3.  Water is pumped from the quarantine tank to the top of a clean, open bucket (usually a 5 gallon bucket). The tank water is pumped over a drip plate. This plate can be made from a piece of a cut down bucket top or made from scrap plastic. The drip plate has dozens of 1/8″ holes in it, and should fit snugly and level inside the upper part of the bucket. This allows water to drip or trickle into the bucket and over a filter medium. If you have a rotating spray bar, so much the better.

4.  The bucket is filled with the highest efficiency bio-ball. I use Super BI OX® because it is the most effective. One gallon of Super BI OX® will maintain 45 gallons of salt water Vs. 10 gallons of water with inferior balls. That means your small quarantine tank will benefit from an over saturation of dissolved oxygen by using BI 0X®. Over saturation dramatically reduces effects of toxic ammonia in all tanks.

5.  Tank water is pumped from the tank into the over the tank bucket. Water drips or trickles through the drip plate and rains down (slowly) over the BI OX®. Water leaves the bucket via the fitting at the bottom and drains directly back into the tank.

6.  No other filters are required. No sand or gravel is used in this quarantine or hospital tank. An exception is if you are quarantining a sand borrowing fish like a wrasse.

7.  Use the highest quality marine salt. Avoid salts that are out of balance with natural seawater. Using low grade marine salts in quarantine and/or your display aquariums simply adds undue stress to captive marine life. Check the S-15™ Report™ for salt info.

8.  If your new fish starts to scratch or develops white spot or velvet, change 50% of the water. Keep the temperature at 78ºF. Maintain a specific gravity of 1.021 and a pH of 8.1-8.4. Turn the aquarium lights off.Add 1 DROP™ copper sulfate at a strength of .15 ppm for 21 days.

DO NOT allow any diseased water to touch or contaminate other aquariums or equipment. Clean your hands, buckets, nets, hydrometers, etc. BEFORE using them with other marine tanks you may have. A trace of contaminated water will spread disease. Check the level of copper sulfate every 48 hours. Add more 1 DROP™ if necessary. Copper sulfate cannot be used in reef or invert tanks.

Quarantine all fish BEFORE adding to your display aquarium.

The Fish Store

The Fish Store
6109 Roosevelt Way NE
Seattle, WA 98115
Over 2300 sq. ft. loaded with magnificent fresh water tropicals and rare colorful marine fish and reef invertebrates.
The Fish Store
1410 156th NE
Bellevue, WA 98007
Over 2300 sq. ft. packed with thousands of gallons of exotic fresh water tropicals and healthy marine fish and reef invertebrates.

The Fish Store in Seattle, WA was opened in 1970. It features a variety of fresh water tropicals. It also has the finest display of marine fish and exotic reef invertebrates in the entire Pacific Northwest area.

The Fish Store in Bellevue, WA was opened in 1972. This store also offers a giant selection of freshwater and marine tropical fish and reef invertebrates.

Both Fish Stores offer a full range of acrylic aquariums and have beautiful exotic reef display aquariums.

Each Fish Store sells from large tanks as well as cubicles. When in the Seattle area, be sure to visit The Fish Store.

FAQ about Saltwater & Reef Aquariums – Part 1

Q: I want to provide the best possible conditions for my captive ocean pets. With so many marine salts being promoted, how do I know which ones resemble natural seawater (NSW) and are best suited for keeping marine fish and reef or invertebrate aquariums?

A: The S-15™ Report™ is the easiest way you can tell which marine salts are similar to NSW and best for keeping marine fish & inverts.

Q: Do scientific-grade or pharmaceutical-grade ingredients make a better marine salt?

A: There is no such thing as ‘scientific grade’. There is no evidence that using pharmaceutical grade ingredients offers any advantages. However, evidence indicates using select grades of key ingredients that were derived from NSW and specially refined offer definite advantages for reproducing, rearing and keeping delicate specific larva.

There are three brands of marine salts contain all or some of these select grade ingredients. These salts are CORAL MARINE™ Scientific Formula&#153, BIO-SEA® Marinemix and MARINE ENVIRONMENT®.

Q: How many of the 15 brands of marine salts tested and described in the S-15&#153 Report™ were high in P04/ phosphate or P/phosphorus?

A: One brand tested higher than all others and contained 2x more P04 than found in NSW.

CORAL MARINE™(1) BIO-SEA® & MARINE ENVIRONMENT® tested at <0.003ppm. vs. 0.07ppm in NSW. That is considered zero phosphate.


Q: How much bromide is in natural seawater and how important is it for keeping exotic marine fish and delicate reef aquariums?

A: There is 65 ppm of Bromide in natural sea water (NSW). It is believed by researchers that there may be a synergistic relationship between bromide and iodide. The proper amount and form of bromide in conjunction with the proper amount and form of iodide (not iodine) might prevent some aquatic health problems.

The presence of iodide (iodide additives) alone without bromide will temporarily raise redox but not prevent health problems associated with bromide deficient environments.

Now that information from the S-15™ Report™ has been made available, some marine salt manufacturers offer their version of an ‘independent’ assay… Unless the laboratory is named and the report is signed, its authenticity is questionable.

Q: Will the proper amount of ozone produce a toxic condition when used with a marine salt that contains the proper amount bromide? Does ozone lower calcium?

A: No. Excessive levels of ozone may be responsible for creating a toxic situation when in contact with some forms of bromide. Excessive amounts of ozone are not found in NSW. Ozone can lower calcium. It is important to control ozone and not compromise basic water quality by omitting elements found n NSW.

Ozone can be a serious health hazard to humans.

Q: How much bromide is found in popular marine salts?

A: Instant Ocean&@174; 5.4ppm, Coralife® 7.55ppm, Reef Crystals® 7.9ppm, Deep Ocean 8.25ppm, Forty Fathoms®/Crystal Sea 43ppm, Tropic Marin® 44ppm, BIO-SEA® 61.5ppm, andMARINE ENVIRONMENT® 66ppm. PPM is parts per million. Natural Sea Water (NSW) has 65 ppm. Bromides tested with AOAC procedures.*

S-15™ Report™ reveals that many marine salt claimsare not accurate.

Q: Is Tropic Marin practically impossible to distinguish from NSW? Does hW contain elements in similar concentrations to NSW?

A: No: Both brands tested low in calcium, other ions varied and each contained higher amounts of metals vs NSW. Refer to the S-15™ Report™.

Q: Why do some dealers offer products that are misleading and/or poorly formulated?

A: The majority of dealers and hobbyists are not equipped to testnew items. They fall victim to colorful advertisements. Some manufacturers do ZERO RESEARCH. They put research, development and testing money into packaging and advertising, which is sometimes misleading. The result can be failure to keep a successful marine or reef aquarium. This contributes to the long recognized problems of animal mortality.

Q: Is the S-15™ Report™ offered so people will know what salts need additives?

A: No. Additives cannot correct water that is drastically different than NSW.

*The S-15™ Report™ is offered so people will know which salts resemble NSW. And which marine salts do not measure up or meet basic requirements.

(1) Tested separately from the S-15™ Report™.

International Report – Red Sea Region

MARINE AQUARIST™ Mid East correspondent Dr. Hameed Al Alawi, Ph.D. in Marine Biology and Advisor Committee member OFI. Dr. Al Alawi is the creator and director of Bahrain Waterlife Centre. Bahrain Waterlife Centre is considered to be the world’s foremost collector and supplier of marine fish and reef invertebrates from the Red Sea, Arab Sea and the Arabian Gulf areas. P.0. Box 2044, Manama, Bahrain. Fax +973-732770. E-mail:

Michael Del Prete and Dr. Al Alawi at Bahrain Waterlife Centr

The holding facility at Bahrain Waterlife Centre is about 9000 US gallons. There are two separate systems with over 260 tanks. Each system utilizes bio-towers. With BI OX® media, air strippers, protein skimmers and bio-filters. Dissolved oxygen is kept at saturation. The pH is kept at 8.25-8.3. All marine life is acclimated to a specific gravity of 1.024.

Bahrain Waterlife Centre has its own collecting stations in different regions. Each collecting station is equipped with protein skimmers, UV, bio-filters, bio-towers with BI OX® media. Although each collecting site is located on the sea, each facility uses 100% Marine Environment® dual phase formula for holding, maintaining and shipping. Hydro-Safe™ is used in all shipping water.

RED SEA: A long narrow body of water with limited areas of continental shelf. The Red Sea extends in a general Northwest – Southeast direction for about 2000 Km (about 1250 miles) and has a maximum width of 352 Km (about 220 miles) in the vicinity of Gizan which is the border of Saudi Arabia and Yemen. The area of the Red Sea is about 438,000 Sq. Km (about 273,750 Sq. miles). the depth of the Red Sea averages 500 meters (about 1575 feet) though in certain places it may exceed 2500 meters (about 7850 feet).

Petrois radiata& Chaetodon Semilarvarius (Golden Butterfly)

Aquarium photos by Dr. Al Alawi

The Red Sea is one of the hottest and most saline seas on earth. It takes its name from the seasonal abundance of billions of minute algae. Trichodesium erythraceum. T. erythracheum live near the surface of the sea. They contain reddish or brown pigments which discolor at the surface of the water in some areas, at certain times. Hence the name Red Sea.

ARAB SEA: The Arab Sea is the rocky coast of Oman. Aden up to the Yemen border. It is part of the Indian Ocean and has a constant promise of discovering new places. The relative remoteness of the rocky coasts and islands has helped to preserve their natural beauty and wildlife. Consequently, these areas offer dramatic scenery and huge growths of corals and algae with plentiful marine fauna and flora

ARABIAN GULF: The Arabian Gulf forms a shallow arm of the Arabian Sea between Iran and Arabia. It is linked with the Arab Sea by the strait of Hormuz and the Gulf of Oman. It is a semi-enclosed sea with an axis length of some 10000 Km (about 625 miles). The Arabian Gulf varies in width from 200-300 Km (about 125-187 miles) and an area of about 226,000 Sq. Km (about 41,250 Sq. miles).

The greatest coral development is found around the low sandy islands which extent Northwards. In the deeper water, below 20 meters the bottom varies from coarse gravel and shell to extremely fine clay and mud. The later becoming dominant the further Eastward and therefore deeper one goes.

Acanthurus sohol Sohol tang

Reef photo by Dr. Al Alawi

Some of the fish collected from these areas: Asfur, Imperator Koran and Maculosus angelfish, Purple, Sailfin and Sohal tangs, Clarki and Bicinctus clownfish, clownfish, Assasi triggerfish and Orange dotty back, Nigropuncatatus, Pheudochromis pericus, Semi larvartus, Larvartus, Mesoloucus and Melaterus butterfly fish, Radiata Lion and Volitan lion fish.

Fish are collected by means of scuba diving up to a depth of 20 meters (about 65 feet). All fish are hand caught by net, sometimes with two divers, without using any drugs. Large or breeder size fish are not taken unless requested by a public aquarium so they can procreate in the wild. Fish are gradually brought to the surface to avoid potential swim bladder damage. Each fish is carefully examined then bagged individually with 100% oxygen on the collecting boat.

All marine life collected in the Red Sea, Arabian Gulf and Arab Sea are acclimatized at the collecting sits, then shipped to Bahrain for further acclimatization and final shipment to foreign lands. All marine life is held for a minimum of 7 days in 100% Marine Environment® dual phase formula™ before being shipped internationally. Hydro-safe™, a stress and shock reducer is used in all shipping water.


Marine Environment® dual phase formula™ & Hydro-Safe™ are the two items used to ship Red Sea fish around the world.



The Importance of Magnesium

Three marine salts. Each with the proper amounts of Magnesium.

Magnesium is a major component in the composition of synthetic seawater. At a specific gravity of 1.026/35 ppt @ 78ºF/25ºC there is 1350 ppm of Mg. That is 3.37 times more than the amount of Calcium, 3.46 times more than the amount of Potassium and 20.76 times more than Bromide.

Magnesium salts cost about 3 times more per pound than common table salt. When a marine salt tests low in magnesium, the weight can be made up by adding common table salt.
Stay in the kitchen, take the heat.
Controversial Topics.

Some items advertised and sold have incurred little or no testing prior to marketing. I call this ZERO RESEARCH. This benefits profit-driven manufacturers, and can ruin our hobby.

Long time saltwater aquarium keepers understand all too well that many new items are rushed to market. Then, if those products work relatively well, a price can be set in the free market. If a marine salt keeps saltwater fish alive only for a few months, then it is sold cheap.

Self serving aqua-gurus, acrylic filter makers, lighting and reef ‘specialists’ come and go. This leaves us with a legacy of goods and information of questionable value.

Some magazines refuse to print results from professionally conducted tests comparing various commercially available marine salts. This refusal to provide consumers with legitimate information is not fair to the captive organisms we choose to keep as pets and our investment.