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Old 01-11-2010, 01:33 PM   #1
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Calcium Noob. Advise Appreciated

Hey all. I've got a 75 gallon FOWLR tank with 45 gallon sump that has been running for approx. 1 month. All tested water parameters have remained stable, however, I tested calcium for the first time this past weekend and found calcium is at 300 ppm. I don't plan on having a full blown reef tank for quite some time, but there is a Kenyan Tree Coral, and some Zoanthids that hitchhiked on the live rock I bought.

What should be my first step concerning calcium? I believe calcium levels should be 400+ right?

Ammonia: 0
Nitrite: 0
Nitrate: 0
alkalinity: 300 (if I remember correctly)
ph: Usually around 8.2

Inhabitants:

2 percula clowns
1 blue tang
2 emerald crabs
1 peppermint shrimp
1 skunk shrimp

Thanks in advance.
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Old 01-11-2010, 01:52 PM   #2
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What type of salt mix are you using? Have you tried PWC`s to up the calcium? 400 to 450 is good. What kind of test kit for calcium are you using?
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Old 01-11-2010, 02:55 PM   #3
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I'm using Instant Ocean salt mix.

I just did a PWC on Saturday after I did the calcium test.

The test is an "AQUARIUM PHARMACEUTICALS" BRAND.
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Old 01-11-2010, 04:03 PM   #4
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Instant Ocean is a good salt to use. Did you try testing a fresh batch for calcium before using it? The API calcium test kits work fine. A fresh batch of your salt should use 10 drops of reagent #1 and 20 drops of reagent #2 for a reading of around 400 ppm.

Being your tank is so young, don't worry about your calcium or alkalinity levels right now. If your alk is 300 ppm (16.8 dKH), that is exttremely high. All your parameters will be swinging wildly until everything stabilizes in a few more months.
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Old 01-11-2010, 06:09 PM   #5
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I agree with Larry. All three responses look good. As he said check out a batch before you add it to the tank and let us know what it is.
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Old 01-11-2010, 07:28 PM   #6
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I'll add this, and it's purely anecdotal. I just setup a 90g with 70lbs of base and 40lbs of cured live rock. Loaded with pure RO/DI water using IO. For the first month/month and a half my calcium was very very low. Rocks turned white.. After racking my brain and testing everywhere I could I supplemented to get it to 460. Since I've done that it now stays in the 420-460 range without any supplements. All the color has returned.

Don't know why the initial low reading but once I bumped it up I never had to again. It's a 90G FOWLR.

As the Buffalo said... For what it's worth
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