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Old 02-06-2010, 03:30 PM   #1
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Moving 10G to a 20G, Help and advice!?

Alright so I picked up a free 20 gallon tank a few days, but here is the downside, it has guppies in it. It's not that I have something against guppies other than I want to use this tank for my 10 gallon reef inhabitants. The plus is it comes fully cycled, and comes with 30 pounds of sugar sized caribsea sand which I really like. so here come the questions.

1) What is the best way to move the inhabitants, including rock and snails into the new tank without causing a new cycle. Currently the 10 gallon tank has 2 ocellaris clowns, and a cuc. Also it has a colony of zoathnids and a giant cup mushroom.

2) Should I clean out the 20 gallon sand thoroughly or will the change over to salt water do that for me? If it will will it cause a new cycle as the sand converts or will it be ok?

3) Is the bacteria that is used in a freshwater nitrogen cycle the same as the bacteria that is used in a saltwater cycle, i.e. that bacteria that is in the sand right now WILL do good in the new saltwater setup, or will it just die off?

4) Should I moved over the sand from the 10 gallon or leave it and start fresh with the caribsea stuff?

My plan is this afternoon I am going to empty the 20 gallon, and keep the guppies in a seperate tank. Then fill remove about 2 gallons of water from the 10 and put it in a bucket. Then I will remove the live rock and put that in the same bucket. Next I will put another 2 gallons of 10 gallon tank water into a bucket and put all of the livestock in there. Next I will put all of the water left in the 10 gallon into the 20 gallon. Then I will most likely move the sand from the 10 gallon to the 20 gallon but I am not sure if I want to do that yet. Next I will start placing the live rock into the 20 gallon and get it to some way I like it and pour the water from the live rock bucket into the 20 gallon. Then I will put the livestock into the 20 gallon and pour the rest of the water from the bucket into the 20. Then fill up the 20 gallon with fresh saltwater.

Lastly I will rinse out the 10 and put the guppies into it, with 50% water.

My thinking on this is I will be doing basically a 50% water change for both tanks, so even though there will be some stress it won't be too serious. Does anybody see any flaws in my plan, or do you have any answers to my questions? Thanks!
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Old 02-06-2010, 07:20 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by th08tu View Post
3) Is the bacteria that is used in a freshwater nitrogen cycle the same as the bacteria that is used in a saltwater cycle, i.e. that bacteria that is in the sand right now WILL do good in the new saltwater setup, or will it just die off?
No the nitrifying bacteria is not the same for SW as FW. You`ll need to start over from scratch or get LR that is already cured. I would just put the tank where you want it and get it cycled and then switch everything over. I would use new sand if it was me as your old sand will be quite nasty.
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Old 02-06-2010, 09:20 PM   #3
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Alright sounds good, What I did was rinse out the sand really well. It wasn't too bad from the guppy tank. The sand from the 10 gallon I took a few handful and put in the 20 gallon just to seed the tank. Moved everything else over, it took me a lot longer than I thought it would because I had to get creative as I was short one bucket. I will just have to monitor everything over the next couple of days to see what the tanks do, hopefully they won't cycle as the live rock was cured i think.
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