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Old 02-15-2007, 11:48 PM   #1
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75 gallon plans - beginning stage

Hello all! It has always been a dream of mine to have a saltwater reef tank. I decided it would be best for me to gain experience with freshwater first to get a "feel" for fish then go on to saltwater. After keeping 2 freshwater tanks for a while (45 gallon central american cichlids and 29 gallon african mbuna), I feel that I am ready to venture into saltwater. As some of you might know, cichlids are not beginner fish like guppies and swordtails, so I definitely learned tons of info on species and communities and pH and so on and so on..... and it was relatively easy as long as you are passionate about it (and passion for this hobby is one thing I DO have!)

So now I'm ready to turn a 75 gallon (newly acquired) into a saltwater coral reef. It won't be ready for setup for another 6 months, but I thought this would be a perfect time to start asking questions along with my research. I have two questions for the moment:

1 - Foxface - Siganus vulpinus: This fish is definitely one I've wanted from the beginning. In your experience, have I correctly put this fish (single specimen) in with my plans for coral, invertibrates (tons of these), and smaller fish? Or do you think the Foxface in this tank isn't a good idea?

2 - What other fish could I add with the Foxface and invertibrates to ensure a harmonious community (if possible)?

To help you with your suggestions, I do have a few things I am looking for. I don't like shy fish that hide all the time, and if they are personable then that's even better! (Anyone who has had cichlids knows the level of "personable" I'm talking about). Basically, a fish that won't run and hide when I approach the tank and behaves normally whether I'm around or not. I've trained previous freshwater fish to take food out of my hand and allow petting. Don't worry, I won't try to pet the Foxface!

Also, another quality I'm looking for is that I'd like the additional fish to have a care level between easy and moderate. I'd like to enjoy my tank, not stress over it. I can handle slightly delicate fish, and I understand these tanks take time to develop and mature to support say a mandarin fish.

Do you have any suggestions for me?
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Old 02-16-2007, 12:03 AM   #2
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I don't know a whole lot about the foxface...just what I have read about it. From what I know it seems like it is a good fish for the reef/community. But it may be a bit cramped in a 75g tank. I think they are usually in 100+ tanks. They are posionous and that would worry me a bit. I agree it is an awesome looking fish though!

You have found a great place for information and suggestions. I know that our moderaters and members will chime in with great suggestions! Be prepared to share some photos though...we love to see the tanks!!!!!!

Check out www.liveaquaria.com Dr. Foster and Smith provide a lot of information on the fish they sell!! If nothing else it is a good reference point!

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Old 02-16-2007, 12:12 AM   #3
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Do you know what you will be doing as far as setup wise, like equipment, lighting, LR, and all that good stuff?
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Old 02-16-2007, 12:52 AM   #4
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I'm not quite decided on my equipment just yet. I'm still in the research phase of my invertibrates and corals and their requirements. I love the zoos, clams, shrimp, and many types of anemones the most. I have to plan rock placement and aquascape to narrow it down to which ones will go where and what their requirements will be. Sorry if that puts a damper on suggestions. I was hoping the fish would be easiest to plan and a place to start since most don't really require certain lighting.

I do know, though, that the current will be a medium flow. At least I have that decided! LOL Oh, and Fiji LR seems to be the popular choice, so I may go with that one, and I would prefer NOT to have to drill into the tank for any equipment. A canister filter for filtration, too. Maybe a HOB added just in case. I believe you can never have too much filtration.

I was afraid the Foxface might be a tad cramped. I was looking for one "centerpiece" fish amongst my reef with others just as fillers/algae eaters/activity.


**Ziggy, I just added a pic of my electric blue jack dempsey in my gallery.
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Old 02-16-2007, 10:51 AM   #5
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Please do not cycle your tank with live animals.

The foxface should be ok in a 75G. Liveaquaria.com states 70G is good. How about a mated pair of yellow striped maroon clowns/anemones (anemones should be housed in a mature tank of about 1 year), a pistol goby and a pistol shrimp?
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Old 02-16-2007, 10:55 AM   #6
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I would advise against the canister filter. The live rock, with good flow in the tank would be all the biological filtration you need. The problem with any sort of mechanical filtration is that it will trap material which will lead to increased nitrates as it decomposes. Instead, look into a protein skimmer which will pull undesirable organic material out of the water before it has the chance to decompose.

I certainly understand not wanting to drill a tank you have already. You can still have a sump by using an overflow box--something you may want to consider.

On liveaquaria's site, there is a compatibility chart you could take a look at.

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Old 02-16-2007, 11:49 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cplawrence
The live rock, with good flow in the tank would be all the biological filtration you need.
I would like to add one thing to Chris`s list. A skimmer would be a very good addition. LR and a skimmer is what I suggest for biological filtration needs. That is all I`ve had except for the last two yrs when I added a refugium. I agree the the canister is not needed.
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Old 02-16-2007, 01:01 PM   #8
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Good stuff, guys, thanks so much. I'm glad the canister won't be needed. That will save me lots of money to spend on a nice skimmer. I'll need it for lights, too, that's for sure!

I never cycle a tank with live animals. I think it is cruel and unnecessary.

I'll continue with the plans to include the Foxface, and be sure to monitor him closely (monitoring my tank closely is my favorite part!).

I love the suggestions, roka64. Thank you. Clowns are awesome creatures as well as gobies and shrimp, and the anemones will be planned for about one year after setup date.

Liveaquaria is a very useful site, and I'm glad to see that others here go by the info given, as well. You never know which sites you can trust with factual information, you know?

So for equipment, I'll need the following: protein skimmer, powerheads, and a sump with overflow box (I like that idea, just don't understand how it works just yet).... and that's it? Wow, I had a whole list of equipment planned that I guess I don't even need.

This is all very helpful, thank you.

Next planning stage will be anemones, clams, and corals. This may take a while...
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Old 02-16-2007, 01:14 PM   #9
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A great source of information about sumps is at www.melevsreef.com. This page in particular gives you some idea of how it all goes together.
http://www.melevsreef.com/what_sump.html

Here is a link to an excellent thread on AA:
http://aquariumadvice.com/viewtopic.php?t=53046

Chris
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Old 02-16-2007, 04:27 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by cajungirl3993
So for equipment, I'll need the following: protein skimmer, powerheads, and a sump with overflow box (I like that idea, just don't understand how it works just yet).... and that's it? Wow, I had a whole list of equipment planned that I guess I don't even need.
Oh... that's not all the stuff you'll need! But that probably covers the "big stuff." The "little" incidentals add up quick. I was amazed. Let's see... other "little" stuff you'll need are heaters, extra heater and powerhead for mixing/storing saltwater, refractometer (don't do the swing arm thing - junk), test kits (ammonia/nitrites/nitrates, Ca, Alk, pH, phosphates), cleaner magnet, thermometers, and probably other stuff I'm forgetting.

You don't need a sump, but if you have room to have one below your tank, then it's a good idea to start off with one. It'll make maintenance easier and give you more water volume to dilute any nasties. If you end up without a sump, you can always use a HOB skimmer.

And about that Foxface - some of the stuff I've read on them says that they may NOT be too reef friendly. In other words, they nip at coral polyps. You mentioned that you're planning to have corals, so you might want to research that aspect of the foxface a little more. I think it might be like some of the dwarf angels like the Flame Angel where some Flames nip and some do not - it's just a individual personality thing. Just something to keep in mind in the planning stage.
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