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Old 10-28-2010, 08:20 PM   #1
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Newbie with stupid questions

My son and I put together his 75gal tank today. We have a wet/dry filter, protein skimmer, and heater all set up. Tank is filled and filter and pump are working and no leaks. From here I plan to add a couple raw shrimp to start the cycle process. So my question is can I put down live sand at this point or do I wait. Also, since I am in sunny Florida, can I just go down to the beach, walk out a ways into the surf and get some sand? I know this is kind of a weird question, but I figured it would save me a ton of money. And since I am between coasts, which coast, if this is possible, would be better?
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Old 10-28-2010, 09:24 PM   #2
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well im not a SW kinda guy... but...

i wouldnt recommend putting anything from the "wild" into your tank... there can be all types of toxins and junk in there that the local fish have adapted to.... and will be magnified in your tank.

as far as adding the sand during the cycle, that i cant answer.
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Old 10-28-2010, 10:22 PM   #3
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anyway...welcome to AA....

im not kinda of experience SW here...but as andrewz said, i believe that taking sand from the beach is not applicable...there might be toxins....i might prefer buy it from LFS.....about the cycle, i put sand before cycle...i dont know if can put after or while water cycle.....
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Old 10-28-2010, 10:36 PM   #4
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Welcome to AA! And the only stupid question is the one you don't ask.

I think it would be fine to add the sand during the cycle, since the bacteria colonize on surface areas and that's a big surface area.

Don't bother with "live sand" because it's not really live, it's just marketing. Dry sand is fine. I like "Special Grade Reef Sand" it's not as fine and won't blow around, but doesn't trap waste like Crushed Coral.

+1 on no sand from the ocean/beach. I'm not even sure it's legal.
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Old 10-29-2010, 11:54 AM   #5
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^^ What he said
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Old 10-29-2010, 12:36 PM   #6
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yeah, i live in sunny florida and id never consider that

floyds right with the dry sand, i bought live and my cycle went no quicker than anyone elses.
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Old 11-03-2010, 04:03 AM   #7
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If I were you I would not hesitate getting the sand from the beach and putting all the wild (and ET included if any) into the tank to start the cycle. I would also use the beach sea water! Crazy? No not really. It is only for water cycle. Once the water is about to matured I would replace the natural seawater with synthetic sea water.

I would have all the natural inhabitants minus the toxins.

If you want to use the natural sea water you got to go far to the sea some 3 miles to collect. The cost would then be higher than buying synthetic?
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Old 11-03-2010, 06:48 PM   #8
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I dont think using sea water for your marine system is a very good idea i dont keep marine fish but i see it as gonig to a lake and filling my aquarium up with that water.. it just wouldnt happen. Sea water will contain all sorts of metals: iron oxide, (rust from ships, bouys, etc), calcium, alot of pollutants and it can also contain alot of bad bacteria and dieases that could destroy your saltwater aquarium.
I would go with buying some salt and mixing your own water, that means you know everythings going to be ok.
It would probably alot easier aswell. Transporting more than 30g of water anywhere is going to be difficult.
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Old 11-03-2010, 06:55 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by stevie8 View Post
It is only for water cycle. Once the water is about to matured I would replace the natural seawater with synthetic sea water.

I would have all the natural inhabitants minus the toxins.

If you want to use the natural sea water you got to go far to the sea some 3 miles to collect. The cost would then be higher than buying synthetic?
Would it not cost more anyway? Paying to get the seawater then emptying it all out and using water that you have mixed? Seems alot less hassle and money to just mix your own water up.
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Old 11-03-2010, 06:56 PM   #10
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water from offshore (way, way offshore) would probably be better, from about 50 ft down and 2 miles offshore. that would be a totally educated guess, though I'm sure that would be much safer than beach water.

I know that there are some public aquariums that use ocean water, they have it tankered in, and I'm sure there's one or two out there that are adjacent to the ocean that lay a pipe far enough out and bring it in that way. Still, I'm sure they highly filter and treat the seawater for bad buddies.

That being said, it's way cheaper to make your own.
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