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Old 03-09-2012, 10:59 PM   #1
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New 55gal Salt water tank

Hello everyone. Well I decided to buy a 55gal tank and set it up for salt water. I live in Honolulu, HI so I thought it was fitting to have a nice tank set up. My set up is simple right now, Eshopps Wdcs 75 wet/dry filter system, an extra Hydor Koralia Nano Aquarium Pump for extra water flow. I am waiting for my air pump to come in so that I can put an air stone in the bottom on my filter to add oxygen. I have one clown fish I put it in as a tester and it seems to be doing great. I will be putting live rock within the next week or so and will allow the tank to rest for a bit before I start to add fish. I have a couple of questions with the starting of my tank before I put live rock in it.

Does my system seem to be sound or do I need more filtration to keep my fish and other stuff healthy?

It's been a few weeks since I started the tank and I have brown algae growing on the surface of the sand and glass. I think this is normal but want to make sure. Is there anything I can do to reduce the brown algae?

Is there any advice (do's and don'ts) I should know before I add the live rock? Any advice would be greatly appreciated. I will keep everyone posted on my progress.
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Old 03-09-2012, 11:13 PM   #2
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An airstone is not needed like it is in freshwater. As long as you have the proper flow from powerheads you'll be ok. Just point one towards the surface for gas exchange.

Did you cycle your tank? Do you have a test kit to monitor your levels?

The brown you have is prob diatoms and is always seen in new tanks.
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Old 03-10-2012, 12:21 AM   #3
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I have a 55 gallon with two 750 per gallon power heads and don't think.it is enough flow in my tank. I think I need more flow to get around all the rock. You may need to get more water movement in your tank to avoid dead spots.
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Old 03-10-2012, 12:23 AM   #4
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Plus my 600GPH return pump from my sump.
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Old 03-10-2012, 01:06 AM   #5
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Sniper, I have not tested my tank, what is it I'm testing for? What do you mean by cycle? If I don't know what you mean by cycle the tank then probably not perhaps you can expand a little?
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Old 03-10-2012, 01:45 AM   #6
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Hi Gk and welcome to AA!!! Cycling your tank is the process of preparing your tank for fish. You need to grow beneficial bacteria that will consume your fish waste (ammonia) into nitrites, and then to nitrates. See the article below for an explanation.

The (almost) Complete Guide and FAQ to Fishless Cycling
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Old 03-10-2012, 02:22 PM   #7
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AquaRick,

Thank you very much for the information. I read through it but there seems to be one piece missing in my case, and that is that I don't mix my own water, there are places in Hawaii where you can get filtered saltwater from the ocean. Do I have to still cycle my tank if I use this water? I started up a 14gal nano salt water tank and it seems to be fine with live rock without a cycle time. I have purple algae growing like wild fire and polyps are multiplying as well. Perhaps since I am using real ocean water, cycling is not required? When I started my 55gal tank, I put real ocean sand in the bottom. After adding water, I used an extra filter to help clean the milkiness out, which only took overnight to accomplish. My single clown seems to be doing really well and now I am just waiting for the weather to clear in order t get my rock. Any explanation as to why I had no issues with my 14gal or keeping my clown alive with no issues? I do 10% water changes in each tank on a weekly basis. Maybe that has something to do with it?
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Old 03-10-2012, 02:25 PM   #8
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The cycling is required regardless of what water you use. Beneficial bacteria is mostly found on and inside surfaces. There is nearly no BB in the water column.
What kind of rock are you using for your tank?

have you tested the water parameters of your tank?
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Old 03-10-2012, 02:46 PM   #9
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As stated above an airstone is not needed in a SW tank. Aeration in a SW tank is done through surface aggitation. Have a PH slightly pointed upward to the surface aggitating it. When using bubbles the only aeration being done is when the bubbles break at the surface. You can accomplish much more with a PH. Plus you dont have to worry about salt creep with a PH.
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Old 03-10-2012, 04:21 PM   #10
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AquaRick,

Right now all I have is sand in the bottom, which I am considering changing out to Florida crashed coral. It seems heavier and easier to keep clean than sand. Advice? or preference? Once the weather turns nice, I intend on going snorkeling (in non-protected areas) and pick some rock up. There are areas where this is permitted, as long it isn't live coral and you aren't allowed to break anything away from something larger. It's much better than going to the local fish store and pay $7 per lbs for the exact same rock. I will also buy some dry base rock to minimize the amount of live rock I need. Advice again?
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