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Old 02-27-2011, 12:12 PM   #1
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Coral amount

I know there's a waiting period while adding fish to the tank. I've been told by other reef tank owners that you can add coral to the tank as fast as you can get your hands on it. Is this factual?
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Old 02-27-2011, 03:43 PM   #2
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No. Most coral species are as sensitive to water quality, or more sensitive than most fish. Also, the fish do not care much about the lighting, but the coral does. Water movement is also a factor. I would wait until the tank has cycled a few times and the fish all are healthy and eating, then I would try a small easy to care for coral (a small piece, not. $200 specimen of Red Sea coral) and see what happens. If he survives, or better yet enlarges and reproduces, then you are ready to invest in more coral. Be careful of your selections, as many species do not get along together.
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Old 02-28-2011, 07:31 PM   #3
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I think what the other reef tank owners may have been saying is that coral don't add to the bioload nearly as much as fish so you can add more and at a faster rate without worrying that you will overload the system. However, as mentioned above there are other reaseons why you should take it slow. Remember, the only things that happen fast in the hobby are bad things, so take ur time with it and slow down.
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Old 02-28-2011, 07:55 PM   #4
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Yes, but one dying coral can kill everything else in the tank if not removed immediately. A fish probably won't do that. I had a large colt coral die back and failed to trim the dead branches fast enough. The toxins it released took many water changes to eleminate. Of note, I left the base of the colt coral, with no polyps, because it didn't seem dead. Months later, it formed polyps and is growing back.
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Old 02-28-2011, 08:03 PM   #5
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Very true, a dying coral can greatly affect water quality. Taking things slow observing and learning are the way to go.
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Old 02-28-2011, 08:05 PM   #6
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my experience has been that i've been able to add 50-75 large pieces of coral to my system at the same time with no ill effects. it was a 400+ gallon system, but i didn't have any trouble.
think about local stores. they order 5 and 10 boxes of coral at one time (25 pieces per box in some cases). they surely don't keep them in the boxes for weeks at a time waiting for the first additions to acclimate. they toss them all in at once.

just remember that your parameters will change. there will be a higher demand for nutrients and trace elements the larger the coral load gets.
if you are on top of things, you'll be ok.
that means testing your parameters regularly.

i do agree with the above, that you should start slow and get acquainted with reef keeping before you try and fill the tank.
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Old 02-28-2011, 08:11 PM   #7
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I ran fish stores in my jaded past. The coral tanks were set up to maintain coral, not to grow it. I would never add that much coral at once unless it was all from the same exact region. And then it would be just to keep it alive until I could move it. In the last 5 years, I decided I had enough with killing things I paid a lot of money for, so I have concentrated on growing little things into big ones. It may not be as pretty as that $150 piece of Red Sea coral, but my way it lives and thrives. Everyone to their own techniques, but going slow is the only thing that makes sense.
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Old 02-28-2011, 08:12 PM   #8
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Yes start slow, but once you get the hang of it you can add as many as you like and at any rate. I recently just put about 15 new corals in at once and no problems what so ever
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Old 02-28-2011, 08:17 PM   #9
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Just curious, how long ago? Were they all from the same region? Have they shown growth? I am very nervous to add that much life at once. Too many things could go wrong in my humble opinion. Work up slowly, as the first place you placed the new coral is probably wrong and you will need to move it or change water flow/lighting to suit it. Everybody has a different approach, I have set up commercial display tanks where I did add a bunch of stuff at the same time, but if I have a choice, that is not how I want to do it.
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Old 02-28-2011, 08:23 PM   #10
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Hey sorry new to saltwater and about to start cycling my new tank. I'm purchasing the salt tomorrow. Im just chlorinizing the water right now. Is it okay if I add the sand today?
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