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Old 05-05-2008, 02:34 PM   #1
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Clean up crew

Sorry I'm jumping into this thread...newbie here. I hear a lot abotu "cleaning crews". What are they and what do they eat? I have a lot of algae I am trying get rid of as I cycle some live rock in my 20 gallon. Should I buy some snails and stuff to get rid of it all? I've no idea what I'm talking about
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Old 05-05-2008, 02:44 PM   #2
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Most clean up crews won't eat cyano bacteria (which I think is what is in your tank). Generally a good clean up crew will eat fish waste, some algaes, dead critters and regular food. Others will "till" your sand bed like nassis, sand sifting stars and conshes, to name a few.
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Old 05-05-2008, 04:01 PM   #3
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I`m going to break this off and start a new thread Clueless. I`ll title it Clean up crew.
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Old 05-05-2008, 07:09 PM   #4
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So more questions:
1) do they count toward the bio-load of my tank?
2) how many would I need for my 20 gallon tank?
3) what kind of critters would you recommend for a novice like myself?
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Old 05-05-2008, 08:25 PM   #5
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1. No
2. You wont need that many at the beginning since there wont be that much waste in the tank.
3. a few dwarf hermits, narsirrus snails, some astrea snails.
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Old 05-05-2008, 08:47 PM   #6
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You want about 1 snail per gallon, or at least that's the general rule. I prefer not to have any hermit crabs in my tank. They always went after snails for their shells. Mike and others disagree.
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Old 05-06-2008, 01:16 AM   #7
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But don't add any until your ammonia and nitrites drop to zero. Done those water tests yet?
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Old 05-06-2008, 09:28 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cmor1701d View Post
I prefer not to have any hermit crabs in my tank. They always went after snails for their shells. Mike and others disagree.
I`m not disagreeing. Any time crabs are involved anything is possible. I dont ever disagree with someone elses experience. I have found in my experience that the dwarf hermits are less likely. But that is JME.
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Old 05-06-2008, 10:37 AM   #9
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I checked the chemicals on the night I dropped in the rocks and I got a funny reading on my NitrAtes. That is, I got NO reading. The sample turned pale purple! Which isn't on my testing chart LOL! The pH was 8.2, the nitrItes were 0.0, and the ammonia was .25. Temp 80 and spec gravity fine.
I'll test it again tonight. I won't do anything else for at least two weeks anyway, so no worries. I want to drop in a clownfish when my tank is ready, but not until then. Then add a clean up crew once my tank balances again.
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Old 05-06-2008, 11:27 AM   #10
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I want to drop in a clownfish when my tank is ready, but not until then. Then add a clean up crew once my tank balances again.
Once your tank cycles, adding a single clown shouldn't throw anything out of balance. You shouldn't see a cycle at all - assuming the tank is cycled. If you add more than one fish at a time then you *may* see a little blip of ammonia, but that's it.

Guess I'm just saying I wouldn't hold off too long for a cleanup crew. They were the absolute first thing into my tank. For a 20g tank, I'd probably put 10-15 nassarius snails in for the sandbed, then put in maybe 4-6 astreas and 6-8 trochus. You don't have much rockwork to keep clean, and the tank is not heavily stocked, so I'd stay on the low side for cleanup crew quantity. You can always add more later.
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