What do you call someone who keeps a reef tank?

What do you call someone who keeps a reef tank?

Keeping boxes of saltwater in our homes and businesses (and wherever else we keep them) is an extraordinary adventure. It is many things. We are plumbers, collectors, amateur scientists, decorators.

What should we be called?

Hobbyist is often used, but seems reductive. Each one of us might be crazy, inspired, foolish, and fascinated with tending to a salty biosphere in a box but it doesn’t seem like a hobby, exactly. It seems more accurate to call it a compulsion to explore our natural world and to enjoy it’s beauty. It is much more like gardening – tending to and enjoying a bit of nature. And is a gardener, no matter how amateur, a hobbyist?

Perhaps Reef Gardener?

Aquarist, Reef Keeper, Reef Builder? Coral Tender, Saltwater Enthusiast, Polyp Propagator, Reefer, Marine Environment Appreciator, Saltwater Boxer?

This endeavor is varied and the appropriate names for us participants are too. Whatever we’re named, it is the thing we’re doing that ultimately matters and that defines this pursuit. It is intensely interesting and worth doing – caring for a bit of the natural world in and out of our tanks

 

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