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Old 03-01-2006, 01:27 PM   #1
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Cycle update & cleanup crew question

Hello all,

I have a 72g reef ready and here is a chronology of events.

02/07 Established tank with fresh water
02/08 Added Salt, live sand etc
02/12 Added about 25lbs live rock and 25 lbs of base rock, both cured.
02/15 Added another 50 lbs of cured fiji premium live rock
02/19 Added three damsels. Blue, Yellow and black.
02/20 Blue damsel was failing. I gave him away to a friend and a day later he died.
Water Paremeters 0 Ammonia, 30 nitrate, .1 nitrite, 8.2 ph
Between 02/20 through 02/28: No casualties. Both damsels have been frolicking all along.
At times they kick each others butt. Other than that they were having a good time.
I feed them a pinch of flakes once every day. I did pwc twice in between with about 10% of water.
02/24 & 02/25 I tested water with two different lfs and they said the water parameters are great but suggested to wait for one more week.

This is my fourth week of the cycle and here are today's parameters:

Nitrate <10; Ammonia 0, nitrite 0, ph 8.0, SG 1.023, temp 78.

I want to know how far I am away from my cycle being complete. Some Algae starts showing up and I would like to add some cleanup crew sooner than later. I want to start with a smaller crew and add more later as necessary.

Is this a good list to start?

Red leg hermit crabs 10
Nassarius Snail or Mexican Turbno snail 5
trochus snails 5

Please advise.
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Old 03-01-2006, 04:56 PM   #2
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Go for it.

You may regret the damsels later, but if ammonia and nitrite are 0 after you've been feeding the tank for two weeks, it can take a cleanup crew.

The appearance of algae can be an indicator that the cycle is complete.

I'd get lots more hermits and nassarius/turbos. I don't know much about Trochus.
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Old 03-01-2006, 05:15 PM   #3
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I would get at least 20 nassarius snails they will sift your sand, at least 5 turbo snails to start they will tear up the algea on the glass but wont do much for sand. I dont know about the Trochus either sorry!
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Old 03-01-2006, 05:41 PM   #4
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What about hermit crabs? I read another post where it is suggested that not to put any crabs since they might attack the snails for their shells. Is it ok to assemble a crew of just snails without any crabs at all?

Let me know what else could go with nassarius & turbo snails.
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Old 03-01-2006, 07:28 PM   #5
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You could do that, but you'll miss out on thier unique benifits. Crabs will take care of larger pieces of debris than snails will, because they can tear them apart with the claws. The crabs will attack each other and snails, that's part of why it's a good idea to start with lots of them. Some crabs are more agressive than others. Hungry crabs or crabs in tanks without spare shells are more agressive, as well as peronality/species playing a role.
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Old 03-01-2006, 10:10 PM   #6
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I have scarlet hermit crabs and blue legged hermit crabs with my snails and I have had no problems with them yet. I have a few extra shells in for the crabs but they dont really seem to need them yet. I also have 2 pepermint shrimp. as stated above each one plays a role you might loose a couple here and there but that is just the cycle of life. take a look at www.liveaquaria.com under clean up crews and that will give you agood idea of what you need.
HTH
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Old 03-01-2006, 11:21 PM   #7
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Sounds like a good idea. I will do the same. Where did you get these extra shells from?
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Old 03-02-2006, 11:20 AM   #8
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Many places that sell hermit crabs will also sell spare shells.
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Old 03-02-2006, 11:52 AM   #9
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ok thanks.
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