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Old 11-15-2004, 12:21 AM   #1
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Patience is a virtue & I must be virtue-less!

My wife and I just got into saltwater aquariums. I previously owned several freshwater tanks and together we had a pond at our last house. Having been successful with all of them, we figured "what the heck, we can do saltwater!" So we go out and buy a nice 120gal tank, set it right up in our front living room and have this great showpiece to greet people as they enter our house.

For the first few days of the cycling process, everything looked great, and then "hey, what's with all of this brown stuff making our showpiece look like . . . uh . . . well . . . not good!" Everyone I talk to and all I hear is "Be patient. It's all natural. Don't worry." Holy cow, I'm going nuts! It's only been two weeks into it and I am trying to be patient, but wow it's tough. Any clue about how long I will need to avoid inviting people over? I can't have them coming in, looking at my "reef tank" and thinking "whoa, nice investment. What were they thinking?!?"

Logically I know it's all part of the cycle, but emotionally I'm thinking "this can't be right. This has to be much worse that what other people see!"

Signed a virtue-less newbie!
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120g RR, 65g HOB and 10g sump, 150g frag tank, 100g sump. Highlights of live stock: Golden Moray eel, 2 purple tangs, 2 yellow tangs, 1 large copperband, 4 GSM's, dragon wrasse, barnacle blenny, 2 pajama cards, 3 green chromis and a dynamic assortment of soft & LPS corals.
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Old 11-15-2004, 12:26 AM   #2
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I assume cyano bacteria.

What is the source of your water? I see that you don't have any LR yet. Once you do and its stabilized add some astrea/nassaius/turbo snails and some hermits. Every tank has a small outbreak of cyano, even if you use RO+DI water. It usually goes away.

How much light do you have above the tank?
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55g reef, 2x250W 10k MH + 2x96W PC actninc, 10g sump, AquaC Urchin skimmer, 65lbs LR

xenia, mushrooms, wels. open brain, fungia radiata (orange), green eyed zoos

flame angel, mated pair of false perc, 6-line, firefish

20gH electric yellow cichlid
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Old 11-15-2004, 12:33 AM   #3
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Source of water is tap (found out too late that this probably wasn't the best choice, but our phosphates test 0). Ammonia is back down to 0, Nitirites are down to 0.2 and Nitrates are at 0. LR is on the way. Lighting is dual daylight - 6,700K/10,000K and dual actinic 420mn/460mn (whatever the heck all of that means!). There are 4 65watt bulbs.

I'm chomping at the bit to add the clean-up crew, but am waiting for nitrites to hit 0.

Thanks!
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120g RR, 65g HOB and 10g sump, 150g frag tank, 100g sump. Highlights of live stock: Golden Moray eel, 2 purple tangs, 2 yellow tangs, 1 large copperband, 4 GSM's, dragon wrasse, barnacle blenny, 2 pajama cards, 3 green chromis and a dynamic assortment of soft & LPS corals.
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Old 11-15-2004, 12:55 AM   #4
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the k (kelvin) figure is the color temperature. If you want to get into the physics of it, its the temperature a black body would have to be to radiate that color.

But in general, 5k is yellowish, 6700k is "warm" (more red/yellows, and is also considered daylight), 10k is "cool/crisp white" (a bit on the blue side), 20k is rather blue. The actinics are very blue, and as the figure states, put out most light in the 420nm to 560nm wavelengths

And a good move on cleanup crew. Depending on your LR, you will have some varying amount of dieoff. This might cause a little spike in ammonia and nitrite again, but should be rather brief.
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55g reef, 2x250W 10k MH + 2x96W PC actninc, 10g sump, AquaC Urchin skimmer, 65lbs LR

xenia, mushrooms, wels. open brain, fungia radiata (orange), green eyed zoos

flame angel, mated pair of false perc, 6-line, firefish

20gH electric yellow cichlid
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Old 11-15-2004, 01:03 AM   #5
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If its a brown rust color, it is common for new tanks toward the end of the cycle. It took about 2 weeks for mine to go away. Very embarassing if someone came over. Hold on, it will get better. It will go away on it's on.
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Old 11-15-2004, 01:07 AM   #6
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Yes, normal...it will pass.
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Old 11-15-2004, 01:29 AM   #7
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You could always cover it up with sheets and have a grand unveiling once it's suitable for spectators.

I swear, people always wanted to come over as it was getting set up and the ugly brown rock from my LFS was just sitting there. Now that there are fish and inverts and macro algae (oh my!), it seems like everyone's busy

The most important thing to remember is that you're in this for *you*, and everything in it is going to make you a happier, more relaxed (despite the unknown that crawls out of the LR on occasion) person.

Sit back and enjoy the small break you'll get before your work sets in
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Old 11-15-2004, 08:32 AM   #8
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what about using a curtured bacteria suppliment (sechem stability)
it will cycle the tank in about 1 week
the brown stuffs probably diatoms
totally normal get a cleanup crew snalis (nassarius,astrea). hermit crabs,etc
since its a new tank, maybe a few to keep algae in line
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Old 11-15-2004, 09:40 AM   #9
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Johns,

Welcome to AA.
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Old 11-15-2004, 09:52 AM   #10
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Quote:
it will cycle the tank in about 1 week
nothing GOOD in this hobby is achieved quickly.
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