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Old 10-30-2006, 10:11 PM   #1
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Lighting cycle for FOWLR tank

I currently have a unit with 2x150w metal halides, 2 actinic flous. Is light cycle really that important for my FOWLR tank? There is no coral of any kind in there. Just fishes.

I only switch the metal halides on for 4 hours at night when I get home because during day time there is no one interested looking at the fishes. Well at least not my 2 and a half year old son, he is more interested in watching his cartoon channels on satellite tv during the day anyway. Or worse he might just mess around with the tank if the light catches his attention.

Also if I reduce the light cycle I will almost have no algae problem as well am I right? Since metal halides use so much electricity I might as well also use it as lighting for my lounge area then I donít need to switch on extra lights for the area.

Since there is no coral in the tank I can hang the metal halide a bit higher to lit the whole lounge area as no intense lighting is needed for the fishes. Also it is almost summer time here in Australia the metal halides also wonít cook the aquarium water from long distance and I donít need to worry too much about temperature (donít need chiller etc but I do have an aquarium fan blowing the water surface to help evaporation and thereby reduce temp).

The main reason I get a metal halide for my FOWLR tank is to get the underwater ripple shadow effects. It just looks so **** cool. I donít think normal flous can do this as they are just not bright enough. Not even VHO flous can achieve this I think (wellÖ not sure).

Secondly I am not sure if I will go reef or not in future so better have it now than upgrading it later.

So could anyone suggest if 4 hours a day of metal halide lighting is alright for my FOWLR tank? Will darkness (well not total darkness as there are natural lights in the house during the day) stress fish out considering the tank is out of lighting for 20 hours a day?
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Old 10-30-2006, 10:21 PM   #2
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I believe that the fish only will be ok. Gonna run the actinics for 8 or so maybe? Just my opinion, but wondering if the fish could be more active with more than 4 hours light and thereby be a bit more healthy/fit. Just wonderin'.
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Old 10-31-2006, 01:21 AM   #3
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I absolutely notice that my fish are much less active with natural light. Even if it is regular fluorescent I would have them on at least 6-8 hours to try and give the fish a real life daytime. Just MO
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Old 10-31-2006, 01:26 AM   #4
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Ok I will let the actinic blue start the first 2 hour, then the metal halide start next the same time actinic blue off.

Metal halide on for 4 hours then shut off and actinic blue take over again the same time and run for 2 hours then actinic blue shut off.

So total 8 hours will that be fine?

Remember it is a FOWLR tank no coral at all. Or could this light cycle alright for softies like xenias?
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Old 10-31-2006, 01:55 AM   #5
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Is this the 132?

Quote:
softies like xenias
Sure. Dont be fooled by xenias btw. Some like high light. Regardless there are alot of corals that would do well.
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Old 10-31-2006, 02:34 AM   #6
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Yeah this 132g 6 footer.
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Old 10-31-2006, 09:55 AM   #7
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I run my lights for 8 hours. The timer turns on a 2PM and off at 10PM, that way, I get some nice viewing for three hours, after I get home from work.
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Old 10-31-2006, 10:31 AM   #8
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I'd suggest running the actinic with the MH if water temps allow. Actinic on at 3pm. MH on 1 hour before you get home from work (actinic still on BTW). MH off after 4 hours. Actininc still on and off at 11. Bedtime for you and fishies.

Your actual mileage may vary - - but you get the idea. Adjust as needed. This way you'll get to view the daylight and the twilight view while you're home.
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