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Old 05-02-2008, 03:52 PM   #1
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How does my tank sound so far?

I have:
  • 29g
  • 2X 65W CF lighting
  • 2 modded power filters turned into refugia housing chaeto and LR rubble
  • about 15lbs LR, 30lb Base rock
  • 5-6" DSB, with live sand in sugar size
  • 50 W heater - don't worry, I'll upgrade this, but my apartment stays at about 80F all the time so not a concern till winter
  • 2 ~200GPH power heads, one of them the rotating "wavemaker" kind
  • cheap airstone powered skimmer which does actually pull out some skimmate
My levels most recently were:
  • 80F
  • 1.025 salinity
  • 0 Ammonia
  • 0 nitrite
  • 20 nitrate
  • pH 8.2
My life:
  • 6 nassarius snails
  • 3 smaller snails, burrow into sand like nassarius snails but have black shells
  • 5 blue legged hermit crabs
  • Percula clownfish (just got him, he took to a cave in my LR overnight)
  • 'Pods on the LR/glass
  • Micro stars crawling around on some LR pieces
My tank has been set up for almost a month now. I do 3 gallon water changes every week with RO/DI water I get from the grocery store, and top off with RO/DI water every day.

I have a little bit of diatom and brownish algae growing on the sides of my tank, but the cleanup crew is starting to cut down on that. Also, I'm seeing lots of little 'pods roaming around.

I would like to have hardy corals, cool inverts, and potentially a few more smaller fish like gobies.



What I would like to know:
  • What additions to my clean-up crew do you suggest?
  • What sorts of fish can I add?
  • I would like to have a firefish goby, but I don't have a cover on my tank - bad idea?
  • Should I hold off on adding corals for a while longer?
  • Do I have enough lighting for an anemone?
  • Do you think my set-up sounds ok?
  • Is a Mandarin Goby not an option?
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Old 05-02-2008, 04:39 PM   #2
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Sounds pretty close to the system I'm running right now myself. Except I've got a 25 gallon rubbermaid I'm using for a wet/dry.

I'm running pretty much the same lights too. I'm not sure if I'd actually call them good enough for an Anemone, but the yellow sebae anemone that I have seems to be happy enough. He's only been there a month, and he's moved once to a less lighted spot. So I'll have to see how that goes.

It is enough light to get the algae growing though. So far I've been real impressed with Mexican turbos and emerald crabs. The Mexican turbos will hit the red algae and the crabs tear though green hair algae.

I'd be picky about choosing a goby though. I picked up a yellow headed sleeper goby, and while he's great at sand sifting, the problem is where he leaves the sand...EVERYWHERE. I can tell where the snails and crabs have been because they tend to knock of the fine layer of sand that's on top of everything except the glass.

Mainly it's an aesthetic issue, if you plan on picking up some nice corals, they tend to look better when not covered in sand. Fortunately I'm going with polyps that tend to knock the sand off when they open and close for the day. Just something to take into consideration.

I'd also take a look into some cleaner shrimp. I went with peppermint shrimp myself, not sure if I like um yet, but they do a bang up job, regardless if whatever they're cleaning wants to be cleaned.
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Old 05-02-2008, 05:05 PM   #3
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Mandarin Goby - don't go there. Research them and you'll figure it out. Unless you have a large, very well established tank with lots of little bugs for it to eat, it won't live a very long or nice life in our tanks.

Clean up Crew - Sounds like you're covered for your sandbed, but you need some critters for the glass and rocks. Astrea and trochus are my favorites. Turbos are good, but can get rather big and become bulldozers. If you plan on keeping corals, it's something to consider. Maybe 6-8 Astrea and 10-12 Trocus to start with? And yeah... skunk cleaner shrimp are a kick to have. Great personality. Mine doesn't do squat with my fish, but it's good at picking excess food out of the rocks and sand.

Anemone - Until you get more experience under your belt, I'd stay away from them. They need stable and pristine water parameters which really doesn't happen until you've had the tank up at least 6-8 months. Not sure if you've got enough light anyway. Probably borderline for some of the lower light anemone's. Don't go with a sebae though - those are definitely not a low light anemone and can be tough to keep.

I'd hold off on corals until you get your tank fairly well stocked with fish. That just makes sure that if you have any "accidents" during stocking (bad water parameters) you won't endanger any corals that you might have in there. It'll also give you a chance to get your rountine down more and keep things stable.

Other than that, your setup looks pretty good. Just keep researching and moving ahead slowly!
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Old 05-02-2008, 06:25 PM   #4
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All good advice! I like cerith and margarita and nassis for my snails.
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Old 05-02-2008, 08:18 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kurt_Nelson View Post
1)Anemone - Until you get more experience under your belt, I'd stay away from them. They need stable and pristine water parameters which really doesn't happen until you've had the tank up at least 6-8 months.

2)I'd hold off on corals until you get your tank fairly well stocked with fish. That just makes sure that if you have any "accidents" during stocking (bad water parameters) you won't endanger any corals that you might have in there. It'll also give you a chance to get your rountine down more and keep things stable.
Good advice
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Old 05-03-2008, 02:40 PM   #6
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All great advice so far. Your lighting is low for sps corals but mushrooms, leathers, etc. should do fine. You want to get the nitrates down <10 and keep them there for most corals ( <5 would be better).

The mandarin is not an option in that size tank (IMO). When you get a larger (75+g) tank (just a question of time ) this what you have to look forward to:
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Old 05-06-2008, 02:32 PM   #7
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Thanks for your opinions. I have some cerinth snails on the way to clean the glass. I have done a lot of reading on anemones and I'm not even going to bother trying. It seems the ones my percula clown would be most likely to take to are some of the hardest ones to care for anyway! In about two weeks if all is going well I'll add a fish or two and see how that goes.
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