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Old 03-26-2012, 03:03 PM   #1
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First Corals.

I all, it's been a while since I posted. That's because I have been struggling with Nitrates. Can't get them to drop. I have done numerous water changes, purchased products, removed my bio balls and tried different test kits but nothing. But now they seem to be falling it may have been 2 months from initial set up but I have learnt so much.

Anyway. I want to know as much as I can about corals before I start so please point ,e in the right direction. There is is so much info if you search and most contradicts itself I'm hoping one of you experts can tell me straight. I see things mentioned like hard and soft corals, bleaching, fragging etc. I see some corals fight and release poison into the tank etc etc. it's a mine field for a newbie and along the road I have lost 3 shrimp a handful of crabs and snails I can't risk anymore otherwise I will become a serial killer and it upsets me too much anyhow.

So I guess I want to know what I need to do to my tank to prepair it for corals (calcium etc) and what are the first ones I should go for, maybe the hardiest.

Any advise appreciated.

Thanks

Rob and Abi.
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Old 03-26-2012, 08:37 PM   #2
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Hi guys,

Glad you've decided to try out some corals! Perhaps the most important thing in regards too keeping corals is deciding on which type of corals you want to keep. In degree of light and flow needs, softies are the easiest, then LPS, and finally SPS.

The type of coral you want to keep will then dictate what type of light you will need to have in order to sustain your corals.

If I may ask, what are your nitrate and phosphate readings at the moment? The more demanding corals (as well as anemones and clams) will require pristine water parameters.
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Old 03-27-2012, 04:27 AM   #3
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I will do a full water test tonight and post my results.
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Old 03-27-2012, 05:32 PM   #4
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PH = 8.1
Nitrate = 5.0 / 10ppm
Ammonia = 0
Nitrite = 0
Phosphate = 0.5 / 1.0ppm
Calcium = 240ppm
salinity= 1.020

I was always aware that before adding corals I would have to start dosing calcium. (got some and need to read how to dose). Didn't realise I had phosphates as not tested for them in a while. But these are my results from an API test kit.
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Old 03-27-2012, 05:41 PM   #5
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Have you decided what kind of corals you want to keep?

Salinity seems very low. I'd aim for 1.26 it's the salinity of natural sea water. That should boost your Ca as well since it's pretty low. Phosphates and nitrates will need to come down a bit more if you want to do LPS/SPS.

If you really want to do your corals justice, I'd highly reccomend getting a better reef test kit to measure your Alkalinity, Calcium and Magnesium. Red Sea and Salifert make good kits for these.

Also, dosing is not required at the start of keeping corals. Using a good reef salt, dosing doesn't become required until you've got a lot of corals growing in your tank. In my 125 I've got about 15 frags\medium size corals and a clam and still have yet to dose.
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