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Old 12-22-2005, 09:19 PM   #1
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Live Rock Question

Can ordinary base rock eventually turn into live rock? If so, how long does it take?
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Old 12-22-2005, 09:27 PM   #2
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Yes, but you need a small amount of live rock to "seed" the dead rock. There's also a company that sells a powder "GARF Grunge" made of broken up live rocks to seed with. You can only multiply organisims you started with. The amount of time it takes depends on the ratio of live rock to base rock, and the water/light conditions.
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Old 12-22-2005, 11:57 PM   #3
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Yeah I had bunch of dried reef rock it was all white and now I cant even tell the difference between the LR in my Tank. For it to get real nice give it about a year
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Old 12-27-2005, 03:59 PM   #4
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My real reason for asking was for its filtration properties, not just for looks. Yeah, it would be great to have rock that looked like live rock with coraline algae growth and all of that stuff. But I know with a fish only tank like I have, I do not have the correct lighting for that kind of growth. But, that's not what I'm really interested in. What I really want it for is its ability to reduce nitrates. Will my base rock ever obtain that capability??
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Old 12-28-2005, 09:44 AM   #5
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Yes, the bacteria will spread just like the higher order organisims, only faster!

If your tank is fishless, the best way to make this happen is to run a fishless cycle, (if you've already done it once before you got the rock, do it again with a double portion of starter organic matter/ammonia source.) When the tank finishes cycling, your rock has a decent head start on it's own biological filtering capacity.

If your tank has fish in it already, it will take a little bit longer, but it will happen. If you're replacing a bioball system with live rock, remove a small portion of the bioballs every week, and the live rock will pick up the slack.

If the bacteria is all you're worried about, either a sample of live rock or live sand will do for seeding your base rock. If your tank is already cycled, then niether is required.
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Old 12-28-2005, 06:48 PM   #6
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The end result of the cycle is nitrates. Various ways to get rid of them are PWC refugiums (macro) or other various ways.
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