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Old 11-27-2014, 01:44 AM   #1
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180g reef -- stocking help

Hey guys. While I am a ways away from starting this tank, I'm currently researching like crazy to determine how to build this monster. Since the intent is to build the tank around the livestock, I figured I'd check with y'all on what I'm thinking of stocking and what I'm currently planning for the build. Freshwater, I have a pretty good idea what constitutes light/heavy/way overstocked, but saltwater, I have not yet gotten a handle on.

Blue Tang (Paracanthurus hepatus)
Clownfish -- specific species TBD

These two are the absolute requirements. The tang is how I managed to swing permission for the tank size lol.

Then I'm thinking a school of 6-8 Zebra Barred Dartfish or Scissortail Dartfish, a Watchman Goby and Tiger Pistol Shrimp, and a Starry Blenny. I'd like a Mandarin eventually.

After that, I'm not sure. We were also looking at a small group of Banggai or Pajama Cardinals, the Bannerfish, the Dusky Wrasse, or the Cleaner Wrasse. This last group, I'm not sure which I would prefer of them. I suspect my housemates would prefer that I go with whichever would give the tank the most activity while still being peaceful.

Also looking at easy corals. Mushroom, Pulsing Xenia (partially for looks, partially because research says clownfish will often use it to host and I'm not touching anemones at this point), anthelia. Maybe some Kenya Tree after a bit of practice, toadstool leather or zoanthis or star polyps.

CUC, definitely. Cleaner shrimp, Peppermint Shrimp, Fire Shrimp. Red/blue legged hermit, possibly emerald green crab (still researching that little guy), and an assortment of snails -- trochus, nassarius, nerite, cerith, a couple turbo.

For set up, I'm still thinking about, but probably going to go with a reef ready tank. Planning a 55 gallon sump (if I can't find one on Craigslist, the dollar per gallon sale at Petco happens fairly often) with an in sump protein skimmer. I'm definitely doing a refugium for pods and macro algae, probably chaeto. I was going to put it in the sump, but I recently read an article about setting it up separately in a way you can display it, so thinking about that.

180-200 lb Fiji live rock. Probably a 4" aragonite sand bed due to the goby/shrimp burrowing needs. Thinking 3 or 4 power heads, brand TBD. LED lights are an absolute definite, brand TBD as I haven't found one I like yet.

With how I plan to set up the hardscape, I'd absolutely love to get my hands on Star Grass and/or Paddle Grass, but from my research, that's not happening

So. Probably too much information, but rather too much than too little. Whatcha guys think on the stocking? Am I stocked without adding one of the fish in the last group I'm not sure about? Or could I do one or two of those?
55g planted goldfish and dojo loach tank
46g & 29g planted tropical community tank
10g planted something tank...still deciding
5g planted Betta tank
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