Welcome to AquariumAdvice.com
Originally Posted by fishyG
I want a sand base with two or three small piles of LR
is just going to be for looks and to help feed my Mandrin colby (main reason to setup this tank
) This is going to be a FOWLR
If you intend on a dragonet, you will need as much rock as you can stand in the tank. About 1Â½ lbs/gal
unless a large refugium is incorporated to help augment the pod population. A small amount of LR
will not sustain the mandarine for long.
1. Should I put the sand into the tank and then add the LR to cure?
If you are just starting the tank, both can be added without a problem. The rock should initiate the cycle process.
2. Do I need the sump/Bio balls/skimmer running when I cure? Or just the skimmer and lots of power heads?
You don't need the sump to help cure the rock but it is best to make sure the tank is set up and running properly before you get to far into things. Plumbing problems are something you don't want after the LR
and such have been added. If you can hold off until the sump arrives that would be better but it's not imperititve. Since you've opted for the LR
(good choice BTW
), I'd skip the bioballs. The LR
should provide a decent amount of surface area for bacteria. Having the skimmer running when curing the rock is definately a good idea. It will help control any ammonia and preserve as many hitchikers as possible. I would also suggest keeping some SW
at the ready for water changes. If/when the ammonia gets to high water changes will help with hitchikers as well.
3. When do I want to add the cleaning crew?
Once the tank has completely cycled. Ammonia and nitrite will no longer be detectable (test kits). Do a large water change upto 50% to bring down any high nitrates and bring water chem back into balance. The crew can then be added slowly. Don't get too many right off about 1/3 the recommended amount is a good place to start. Be sure you >>drip acclimate
<< as well..
4. I was thinking I might just put in non LS and get the LR from the Gulf on liverock.com. It sounds like I can make my own LS from that
When setting up a LR
tank, using LS
is really not needed. The rock itself will seed the sand and eventually make it live. If you do get any type of LS
, be sure to buy it from the same place you get the rock and do not buy regular bagged wet sand, only stuff chalked full of bugs.