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Old 09-29-2012, 09:02 PM   #1
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New Saltwater Aquarium Ideas?

Hello everyone,

My love for the aquaria hobby has grown into entertaining the thought of a saltwater aquarium. I would call myself fairly knowledgeable in the freshwater side. However, I would call myself a novice entering into the intermediate stage in the saltwater realm. I have not determined a specific size aquarium, but I know I do not want to go larger than 90 gallons (prefer 75 or less) and no smaller than 30 gallons.

Please help, if you can??

My thoughts on a 30 gallon tank would be to purchase:
- either 1 Antennata Lionfish or 1 Dwarf Lionfish
1 Flame Angelfish
2 Ocellaris Clownfish
1 Flame Hawkfish
1 Saddle Valentini Puffer
1 Peppermint Shrimp
1 Blue Linckia SeaStar
1 Chocolate Chip SeaStar
Would these fish work together in a 30-gallon tank?
Also, what would be the cost to support this mini ecosystem and food?

Versus my thoughts on a 75-gallon or perhaps a 90-gallon tank:
1 Annularis Angelfish
- either 1 Antennata Lionfish or 1 Dwarf Lionfish
2 Maroon Clownfish, purchased at an adult size
1 Pakistan Butterfly fish
1 Naso Tang
- either 1 Powder Blue tang or 1 Blue Hippo tang
1 Snowflake eel
- either 1 Niger Triggerfish or 1 Humu/Picasso Triggerfish
1 Blue Linckia SeaStar
1 Chocolate Chip SeaStar
Would these fish work together in a 75-gallon tank and if not a 90-gallon tank? Much like before please include the cost to run this system too and food??

Also, what products would you recommend for these size aquariums?
Should I purchase a glass or acrylic tank?

Thanks in advance!

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Old 09-29-2012, 09:34 PM   #2
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Of course bigger is better when it comes to the aquarium. With a larger tank there is less room for error. A dramatic example would be if you had a 3 gallon pico tank and added to much salt, your salinity would sky rocket and probably negatively effect your system, than it would if you had a change in salinity for a larger tank. If you add too much of a chemical or food, a larger tank will be more forgiving. So I'd say go with the 75 or 90 if you can! The cost will increase as your water volume increases, but there's always cheaper things and other tactics to use to save money.

Your first stock for the 30 gallon is waaaay too much. That could be appropriate for a 90 gallon or more! Also, lionfish are aggressive in the sense that they will eat ANYTHING that fits in their mouth! If it was big enough it would even try to eat the puffer, but the puffer would blow up and the lionfish would spit it out. That shrimp, hawkfish, and clownfish would probably the only stock you would want in a 30 gallon and if you added a lionfish they would all be his lunch ! So just to recap if you really wanted a dwarf lionfish..that would most likely be the only fish in the 30 gallon other than an urchin pretty much. Puffers are not invertebrate safe so it would eat your shrimp. No angel should be put in a tank unless it's..I'd say 180+ gallons.

Now for the 75-90 gallon fish choices:
With the lionfish...again tricky b/c you would need larger and aggressive fish than it and usually those fish grow to be way too large for even a 90 gallon.

Powder blue tangs are hard to keep as they get ick very easily and both that tang and the hippo tang need at least a 6 ft tank so even 125 might be kind of small. Naso tangs get waaay too large to fit in a 75 or 90 gallon tank.

Maroon fish are very aggressive so it would be fine since they can probably fend for themselves, but some grow up to 6"! I'd say if you wanted a pair then that would be your biggest fish.

The blue linkia seastar are not for beginners and it's also a invertebrate (so is the chocolate chip seastar) and those fish eat invertebrates so can't have those if you're keeping a lionfish etc.

Butterfly fish eat inverts too and they are peaceful unlike most of your other choices.

Snowflake eel I'd say is okay, but may need to be transfer to a larger tank or returned b/c they can get pretty big.

Acrylic is more clear, strong, and light penetrates it more, but it's about twice as much as glass. If you have the money I'd say go with acrylic. What do you mean products? There's a bunch of products you can buy...if you have a more specific question about one of them then I'd be happy to help! I think you need to research more as it almost seems like you just put in fish that looked great and didn't account for how large they get. There's some good articles on here and you could check liveaquaria.com for quick stats. The more fish, the more territorial they usually get and the more bioload you have! P.s. I'm assuming you don't want any corals?

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Old 09-29-2012, 09:37 PM   #3
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Last question first. IMO glass is good up to about 55 gallons then go acrylic Your choice of fish won't work, Tangs need a 6 foot tank, Triggers and Puffers will eat inverts and corals.

Here's a good site to research your inhabitants. Aquarium Fish: Tropical Freshwater Fish and Saltwater Fish for Home Aquariums

Good luck on the swich.
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Old 09-30-2012, 12:34 AM   #4
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Thank-you both very much for your quick replys. I thoroughly enjoy anything I can learn. I will be researching more and more before I spend any money, but I wish there was more than just compatibility charts for varying species in a tank. The advice from the two of you is an immense step towards the right directions. Thanks Again!!
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