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Old 10-17-2012, 10:50 AM   #1
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Cycling & do I need more live rock or not?


i'm just now waiting on my tank to start cycling. i've only got 1 "so-called" live rock, right now, and it doesn't look like it has anything "live" on it... there's some flaky stuff on it, which i suppose is ok and likely what i want, right? it's been in the tank for 3 days. i've got 2 dry rocks on either side of it & an artificial at the opposite end of the tank. last night, ammonia was still at 0 so i added 1 raw shrimp... was this the right thing to do?
i thought i needed about 75 lbs of live rock, until a day or so ago then i started reading all the mixed opinions about live vs dead... the thought of getting something like the Kraken worm creeps me completely out! so... what is popular opinion here?
then... live rock isn't readily available anywhere close, but i've found a guy about 45 minutes away that is selling "coralline active" live rock with sponges & copepods. since my tank hasn't really started cycling, i wasn't sure it would be appropiate to add to my tank. should i stick with rock that doesn't have coralline algae?
i've done lots of research... maybe too much and from too many sources. i want to do this right, so if anyone can direct me to one trusted source that can walk me through this i'd appreciate it & delete a whole lot of the bookmarks that make my head spin
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Old 10-17-2012, 11:43 AM   #2
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It is best to add whatever rock you want now live or base rock . Like that it will cycle with the tank and you won't have another cycle later on .
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Old 10-17-2012, 12:00 PM   #3
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that's what i was thinking, but all i have quick access to is the rock that has the coralline algae already growing on it. it will die-off during the cycling process, won't it? just not sure if that's good or bad.
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Old 10-17-2012, 12:02 PM   #4
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Nu nu the eel is really smart about stuff and Nikki she's been in for over ten years ask one of them
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Old 10-17-2012, 12:10 PM   #5
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The shrimp was the right thing to do because u need and ammonia source to start the cycle process. Leave that in there for a few days to a week. Watch ammonia levels as they should come up.
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Old 10-17-2012, 12:16 PM   #6
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If its hard to come by live rock and you don't want many unwanted hitchhikers then I would say get about 10-25% live rock and the remainder base/lace rock which will save you some money too. Add all you rock now because once you have fish/inverts/corals it becomes risky. You will experience die off on the rock during your cycle which is completely normal and some how one way or another many of the beneficial creatures will make it (usually left over eggs). After you get all your rock in you can begin your cycle. Do you own a liquid test kit yet?
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Old 10-17-2012, 12:58 PM   #7
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thanks for the great info, Mrc! i've got an api reef master test kit (calcium, carb hardness, phosphates & nitrates) and strips for testing ammonia... that's all they carry at the nearest lfs. is that good enough or do i need to order something different online? what do you recommend? can't tell you how much i appreciate any advice, btw!
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Old 10-17-2012, 02:07 PM   #8
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API master liquid kit for ammo nitrIte nitrate and ph. For the other tests I would go with elos red sea or salifert test kits since API isn't all that accurate with those tests.. also testing for phosphate is extremely difficult to get an accurate reading without a Hannah tester.
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Old 10-17-2012, 03:24 PM   #9
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Thanks, again... just ordered a hanna checker for phosphates. had a feeling those readings i was getting were bogus. some other tests, i'll put on my wish list
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Old 10-17-2012, 05:59 PM   #10
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About the coralline algae, from what I've read it's a good thing and most people want it on their rock. It comes in pretty colors, even purple.
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