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Old 06-13-2005, 03:39 PM   #1
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Is live rock enough for biological filtration?

OK, I've got a 90 gallon FOWLR. I've added 120 pounds of Keys Rock, and I plan on adding another 40 pounds of Gulf Rock. I removed all of the bioballs from the W/D filter and placed the 120 pounds of Keys Rock in the main tank last week. Do I need any other biological filtration for this tank?

I should be receiving the remaining 40 pounds of Gulf Rock by Thursday of this week, leaving me with a total of 160 pounds. I hope I didn't mess things up by removing all of the bioballs...
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Old 06-13-2005, 04:26 PM   #2
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Re: Is live rock enough for biological filtration?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shannono
I hope I didn't mess things up by removing all of the bioballs...
In an established tank as long as they are/were removed slowly over a period of weeks it would be fine. The slow removal allows bacteria to colonize in the main and transition away from the "aerobic only" nitrification offered by the wet/dry. Bioballs BTW are not bad, it's simpley how they are used (usually incorrectly) and the lack of nitrate converting bacterial zones.

Sounds like you have no fish or animals as yet? If so, this is the perfect time to make this kind of switch over. No need to be concerned about the bioballs or curing the rock. Add the rock, remove all the bioballs and wait for the tank to complete it's cycle.

FWIW, I have only LR, 1¬Ĺ" sandbed and a skimmer. No sump or other nutrient sorbant/exporting media except carbon. As long as you are mindful of the bioload, feedings and keep up with regular maintenace/husbandry, you will do fine with what you have planned.

Cheers
Steve
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Old 06-13-2005, 04:43 PM   #3
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steve-s, you have just made me feel a whole lot better! Thank you!

Quote:
Originally Posted by steve-s
Add the rock, remove all the bioballs and wait for the tank to complete it's cycle.
Regarding your statement above, I have been testing the water quality daily since I added the rock (June 7th-8th), and the levels have remained normal. No ammonia spike, no nitrite spike, no nitrate spike. Is this something I should be concerned about?
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Currently under construction:
90 Gallon SWFOWLR
Marineland Sedona stand and canopy
80 pounds of aragonite sand, 20 pounds live sand
MagDrive 7 pump
SeaLife protein skimmer
VisiTherm 250Watt heater

List of possible fish:
2 Ocellaris Clownfish
1 Royal Gramma Basslet
3 Neon Blue Gobies
1 Yellow Eye Tang
Several Blue Reef Chromis
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Old 06-13-2005, 04:55 PM   #4
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I believe all the liverock from LR.com is already cured. There is a good chance you will have no ammonia or nitrite spike
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Old 06-13-2005, 05:20 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shannono
No ammonia spike, no nitrite spike, no nitrate spike. Is this something I should be concerned about?
Keep testing for the next few weeks. If after about 10 days have passed and no nitrogens show up, start feeding the tank as if it had fish in it. This will help keep the bacterial colonies fed until waste producing animals are added. It will also give you a better idea of how well the tank will process waste. If after you start feeding the tank it still has no nitrogens showing up after about 7-10 days, it should be good to go. Just be sure you add fish one at a time (unless mated pairs) and allow a few weeks between each addition.

Please don't forget to QT all new arrivals as well.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SirLight1337
I believe all the liverock from LR.com is already cured. There is a good chance you will have no ammonia or nitrite spike
True about the reports from people on the nitrogen readings but it's not precured. LR.com is freshly harvested and shipped immediately which prevents the die off normally associated with this kind of life encrusted rock.

Cheers
Steve
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Old 06-14-2005, 09:39 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SirLight1337
I believe all the liverock from LR.com is already cured. There is a good chance you will have no ammonia or nitrite spike
I just wanted to embelish on this.

liverocks.com does an excellent job storing, packaging and shipping their live rock, so it often does arrive without any die-off, and remains cured.

however, a few people have reported ammonia spikes, which is why Steve-s is properly recommending a little caution and patience. The only thing you can rush in this hobby is a disaster
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