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Old 09-18-2010, 02:41 AM   #1
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Live Rock question?

Hi everyone,

I'm new here and in the SW world and I need some clarification about LR.
I hope you will be able to help me here's my question:

1. I've some LR with white stuff on it, I don't know what it is ?
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2. I've read on the forum about a process called curing, how can I recognized cured LR versus an uncured one ?
3. The man at my local Aquarium shop told me that after 6 month my DR will be colonized is it true ?
4. How long should it take before I see purple/red algae or anything else living on my LR?

Here the state of my tank
The tank was started this Tuesday (09/14/2010)
Tank Setup
Tank Size: 20 Gal
There is no fish,coral,invertebrate(That I've put)
I've added 20 ml of Bacteria.
~20 Lbs Dead Sand bedding
10 Lbs LR
7 Lbs DR

Tank level
Temp: 79F/26C
Salt : 1.023
PH: 7.8
Ammonia:N/A
Nitrite:N/A
Nitrate:N/A
Calcium:N/A

FYI: I will go to local fish store tomorrow to test my water for missing parameter.

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Thank you
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Old 09-18-2010, 07:11 PM   #2
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Welcome to AA!!
Live Rock means you have living bacteria colonies in and on the rock. The rock itself is not "alive".

The white stuff could be a lot of different things. If you can get a pic of exactly what you are talking about we can help you figure it out.

Cured live rock means it has been in SW for a period of time and has sufficient colonies of bacteria living on it. Uncured rock means it has dead or dieing life on it and will cause a cycle or ammonia spike in a system. The process of curing the rock is just allowing the dead or dieing life decay and be consumed by bacteria as the bacteria colony grows.

Your PH is low but that comes with a new system. Have your LFS check your other parameters but I encourage you to get the kits and test yourself. You don't have to buy them all at once as they can be pricey. I would start with PH, Nitrite, Ammonia, and Nitrate. From there you can add calcium, phosphate, magnesium and a host of others as your system demands them.

Your rock will color up over time and that comes from lighting, flow and good water conditions. The purple you see on rock is coraline algae and it grows from the calcium in the SW. Over time you will see it growing on the rock, glass and even your powerheads.

Hope that has helped you out.
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Old 09-19-2010, 01:58 PM   #3
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The white stuff is on my first picture (rock on top) do you need a closer look?
Can you give an idea what would be normal level of cal/pho/Mag for my 20 gal?
And about how much I should add Cal for a good start?

Tank level
Temp: 79F/26C
Salt : 1.023
PH: 8.0
Ammonia: 0 ppm
Nitrite: 0 ppm
Nitrate: 0 ppm
Calcium:N/A

Thanks for you help
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Old 09-19-2010, 02:38 PM   #4
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There are several "white" areas on your rock I don't know what you are specifically referring to. My guess is though that you are talking about a sponge. Nothing to worry about.

Calcium - 400-450
Mag - 1200-1350 (should be 3x calcium level)
Phosphate - 0

You do not need to be adding calcium to your system. You don't have anything in the tank that is going to deplete it fast enough to need supplement. Regular water changes will take care of your needs.
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Old 09-19-2010, 11:39 PM   #5
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Thanks for your help
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Old 09-20-2010, 12:38 PM   #6
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My pleasure
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