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Old 11-18-2013, 01:26 PM   #1
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Don't know what to do anymore

Hello!
I have a 10 gallon saltwater aquarium for about 3-4 months. Everything was fine, I had 2 clownfish and a hermit crab. I was trying to start having corals because before I only had plastic rocks and plants. So by trying to do that I bought a special light called Aqua Illumination Nano Sol Modular LED and a better filter from Eheim.
I tested the water and everything was looking good so I got 3 corals! I found a rock at the beach so I boiled it and put it outside for 3 days like my aquarium shop has said I should do. I put the corals and the rock in with my hermit crab and 2 clownfish already in it.
The next day my two clownfish were dead. I checked the water and the nitrate was at 1.0, phosphate at 0.25 and ph at 7.4. So I went to the aquarium shop and they told me that because I changed my filter and didn't leave my old filter in it that its like staring a new aquarium because there are no bacteria in the filter. So I guess thats how my fish died.
After that I did a 30 percent water change and put buffer and bacteria in. It was fine for about 6hr. I checked it again and nitrite was fine again (0ppm)the ph was at 7.4 and phosphate was still 0.25. So I added buffer to bring the ph to normal again but just a few hr later the nitrite was back to 1.0.
I don't know if I am doing the right thing....
I don't want my hermit crab and the new corals to die....
Help please!
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Old 11-18-2013, 01:44 PM   #2
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Don't use beach rock. There are likely contaminates that boiling won't get rid of. Purchase some live rock or dry base rock(cure it before adding)

What salt are you using? And are you using tap or RODI water? Your PH is really low for corals.
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Old 11-18-2013, 01:47 PM   #3
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Hello!
I have a 10 gallon saltwater aquarium for about 3-4 months. Everything was fine, I had 2 clownfish and a hermit crab. I was trying to start having corals because before I only had plastic rocks and plants. So by trying to do that I bought a special light called Aqua Illumination Nano Sol Modular LED and a better filter from Eheim.
I tested the water and everything was looking good so I got 3 corals! I found a rock at the beach so I boiled it and put it outside for 3 days like my aquarium shop has said I should do. I put the corals and the rock in with my hermit crab and 2 clownfish already in it.
The next day my two clownfish were dead. I checked the water and the nitrate was at 1.0, phosphate at 0.25 and ph at 7.4. So I went to the aquarium shop and they told me that because I changed my filter and didn't leave my old filter in it that its like staring a new aquarium because there are no bacteria in the filter. So I guess thats how my fish died.
After that I did a 30 percent water change and put buffer and bacteria in. It was fine for about 6hr. I checked it again and nitrite was fine again (0ppm)the ph was at 7.4 and phosphate was still 0.25. So I added buffer to bring the ph to normal again but just a few hr later the nitrite was back to 1.0.
I don't know if I am doing the right thing....
I don't want my hermit crab and the new corals to die....
Help please!
Sounds like your tank isn't cycled. For a healthy reef tank you will need live rock. I suggest at least ten pounds. I would take the hermits and coral back and try and get credit back. Don't add buffer to your tank, your salt mix + live rock+ aragonite sand will keep pH up. Also what types of coral are they?
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Old 11-18-2013, 01:52 PM   #4
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A tank that size only requires 10-15 #s of live rock so buying it from a fish store should not break the bank. Your tank is going through another cycle. If I were you, I would purchase cured live rock and let the cycle finish. When you do a water change you should just rinse your filter in the water coming out of your aquarium. When you change filtration such as a sponge make sure you put a new one for a week inside your aquarium before throwing away the old one. During this time your new sponge will be seeded with beneficial bacteria and it's safe to dispose of the old one. Never rinse it in fresh water. Good luck and sorry about your clowns!
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Old 11-18-2013, 03:53 PM   #5
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MarinaClown had good advice on how to replace/clean filter cartridges. Also something else to consider is that if you have a deep sand bed (about 3 inches or so) and about 10-15lbs of live rock, it can sustain sufficient amount of beneficial bacteria where you can afford to replace old filter catridges with a new one without risking a mini-cycle. What I do to prevent this on top of the LR and LS is I have 2 HOB filters on my 10 gallon saltwater tank. When it's time to replace a cartridge, i simply rinse the new cartridge lightly in my used water (in a bucket after a water change) and put the new one right in. Leave it in there for about two weeks or so and then you can do the same on your 2nd filter. I've been doing this for months and my black and white ocellaris clown looks very happy. Hope this helps.
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Old 11-18-2013, 06:00 PM   #6
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I have a stylophora, frogspawn and a anemone malu.
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Old 11-18-2013, 06:07 PM   #7
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I have a stylophora, frogspawn and a anemone malu.
That malu anemone is not going to make it if it stays in a cycling tank. They are a relative of the sebae nems and are difficult to keep. They require a very stable tank. The stylo will probably brown or bleach and die as well. Sps are not forgiving of water quality. The frogspawn may make it being hardier but the other 2 I would try to take back.
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Old 11-18-2013, 06:21 PM   #8
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Do you have any thing else in there for flow? 7.4 is too low for saltwater, aim for 8.0-8.2 agree with everything else, add fully cured live rock and let the tank cycle properly before adding any thing else. Also, just so you know an anemone is not a coral and has completely different care requirements, I would re-home it if I were you, as mentioned it will probably not survive the cycle...
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Old 11-18-2013, 06:36 PM   #9
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Really sorry about your clowns
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Old 11-18-2013, 11:06 PM   #10
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Thank you so much everyone!
I will try to take all your answers in consideration!
I brought my anemone malu back to the aquarium shop till my water is all stable.
I am currently looking into getting live rock! Is there anything that I have to watch out for when receiving it?
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