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Old 06-01-2003, 04:32 PM   #1
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Please comment on this set-up & answer a few questions

I am planning a saltwater tank, and would like some comments on this set-up before I start buying things.

29 gallon tank
20-30 lbs live rock
Bak Pak 2

1 yellowtail damsel
1 longnose hawkfish
assorted starfish & snails

Questions:
1. Do I need mechanical filtration to go with the Bak Pak?

2. Will the longnose hawkfish and damsel get along? Hawkfish spend all their time at the bottom of the tank. Are they in any danger from the starfish?

3. I've read that hawkfish eat a variety of marine meats, but will they also eat pellets? If not, what can I put in my Eheim auto feeder to feed them when I'm on vacation?

4. I've read that starfish are good tank cleaners, but how much do they eat? Is the uneaten food at the bottom of the tank enough?

5. Does Instant Ocean also raise my tap water to a pH of 8.2, or is it just salt?

Thanks in advance for the info!
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Old 06-01-2003, 05:21 PM   #2
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1. Do I need mechanical filtration to go with the Bak Pak?
I currently do not use any mechanical filtration on my sw tanks. Even with feeding, there is very little particulate matter in the water column and what does exist seems quite natural to me.

2. Will the longnose hawkfish and damsel get along? Hawkfish spend all their time at the bottom of the tank. Are they in any danger from the starfish?
I would think they should be o.k. As far as the starfish, the green brittle star is one of the few that are actual fish predators and should be steered away from.

I've read that hawkfish eat a variety of marine meats, but will they also eat pellets? If not, what can I put in my Eheim auto feeder to feed them when I'm on vacation?
Never had one, but....how long are you going on vacation? It is likely that if it is only for a week or so your fish will be fine without feeding if they won't take a dry food.

4. I've read that starfish are good tank cleaners, but how much do they eat? Is the uneaten food at the bottom of the tank enough?'
In addition to what it scavenges, I direct feed my banded serpent twice a week or so a meaty food like shrimp or squid.

5. Does Instant Ocean also raise my tap water to a pH of 8.2, or is it just salt?
IO will mix normally to the proper PH and also contains a list of trace elements, etc in addition to salt.

The only thing I don't see is what you might use for a substrate? My suggestion would be to create a Deep Sand Bed (DSB) to help with nitrate control and to reduce the amount of maintenance required (over say, crushed coral). DSB info she be available through a search of the site and also at http://www.rshimek.com/reef/sediment.htm
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Old 06-01-2003, 10:34 PM   #3
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Substrate

Thanks, HoopsGuru.

I currently have a freshwater tank containing praecox rainbows and albino corys with a black sand substrate (love the color). I was planning on using the black sand on the salt tank as well, unless someone convinces me that crushed coral would be better.

One more thing: if the longnose hawkfish lives on the bottom of the tank, would the crushed coral be too abrasive?
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