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Old 10-24-2010, 01:15 AM   #1
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Day 1 of The Cycle - Questions

Hi - I have a few questions and was hoping someone could help me.

Last week I bought 40lbs of base rock for my 60 gallon SW/reef tank. Today, I bought 40lbs of Fiji (cured) live rock and 4lbs of Bali (uncured) live rock. I was curious about uncured rock but didn't want to make a huge investment in it so I picked up a decent sized chunk of it for fun. Since this is a brand new tank, I put all the rock in the display tank and some rubble in the fuge. I plan on doing a water test in 3 or 4 days to see what the levels are. I expect to add more LR down the road.

Anyway, I ID'd what looks like a tiny feather duster extending from a piece of LR. I was pretty excited and went online to read up on them and now I feel like it is going to die. I don't see how the hostile swinging conditions of the tank and lack of food will allow it to live. But I really want it to live. Give it to me straight - can I suppliment it's diet somehow or should I cut my losses now and expect that it will die and move on?

Also, while I was lost in thought, watching this thing, I saw a long thread like black worm float by. It landed on a rock and began crawling across the surface of the rock and disappeared into a crevice. Of course I thought bristle worm because anytime I search out info on hitchhikers, bristle worm is one of the first hits. But I didn't see any bristles. It looked like a black thread that was about 1.5" long. Any ideas?

And - How much water evaporation should I expect to see on a weekly basis? I'm adding water to the fuge every other day. I don't see any leaks. Can that much water really be evaporating?

Finally - I'm not sure how full the refugium/sump should be. Right now it's half full. That isn't deep enough to put equipment in. But if there is a power outage, I would think I would need to leave space available for backflow? Should I kill the power for a few minutes to guage this? What I have is 24"L x 10"W x 12"H ACRYLIC sump for 40-65 gallon tank.

Thanks
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Old 10-24-2010, 03:43 AM   #2
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I personally noticed a good 2-3L of evaporation the first few days I had the tank setup, also my house has very dry air as well, so a big tank of water almost acts like a humidifier I find. Now thats its been setup a while I would say about a 1 liter every few days is common at least for my setup which is a 38Gal.

My wifes 5g tank loses even more in a shorter time frame and its a FW tank.

As for the hitchhiker check this out
Xtalreef

and the feather duster well think of it this way, it was transported from who knows where to your LFS then from the LFS to your house...for the duster to die now it could happen but look at how hardy it already has been?
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Old 10-24-2010, 04:02 AM   #3
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Yes, as far as your sump goes, turn the pump off and see how high the water gets before it can overflow due to a power outage. Then mark that level both on your sump and your overflow. If it's an overflow box you will have to drill a couple of holes in the tube at this water line to break suction. When doing water changes do not fill over that line in the sump and you will be okay.
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Old 10-24-2010, 09:33 AM   #4
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magma has a good point about the duster. it will probably be fine. you don't need to feed it.
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Old 10-24-2010, 07:22 PM   #5
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Thanks everyone!

Magma - that was a good link. It listed something called a Foraminifera and it looks like I have one of those on a piece of rubble rock. Today, I also found a tiny starfish. I think it is a Asterina star, but I'm not sure.

Thincat - I'm not sure that I can drill anything on the overflow box that I have. There is a pump providing the siphon and water enters the box. This is the style that I have: CPR CS50 SIPHON AQUARIUM OVERFLOW BOX by CPR Aquatic - AquaCave I am still working up the courage to kill the power to the setup, ha. Marking the overflow line on the sump is a great idea, which I will do.
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Old 10-25-2010, 03:38 AM   #6
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okay, with that overflow you will not need to modify it in any way.
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Old 10-26-2010, 11:27 AM   #7
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okay, with that overflow you will not need to modify it in any way.
Thanks. Hey, can I ask you another question?

It's been three days since I put in the LR. I'm showing zero ammonia. Should I wait a few more days before testing again or should I put something in the tank to kick start the process? I don't think the cycle has stalled - it just isn't happening. I have 40 - 45lbs of live rock in additon to base rock. I've had my hands full trying to ID all of the hitchhikers that I've found in there so I believe that the LR was good quality and my water can't be too out of whack if they are doing well. I'm seeing some die off on the rock but no ammonia. It's a 60 gallon tank. I'm wondering if I don't have enough LR... or maybe it is just too soon?
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