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Old 11-14-2003, 12:03 PM   #1
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Reef or Saltwater-- what's the difference? & Seahorses

Okay, as you can see, I am totally new to saltwater. I plan on having Dwarf Seahorses & want to set up a "mini" species tank. I have a 3g Eclipse system that I plan on converting to saltwater for the horses. Now, anyone have experience w/dwarfs? What is the difference between "reef" and just a saltwater setup? What's the best for horses? Any good, cheap suppliers of live rock you can recommend? Also, any advice on live-feeding would also be appreciated.

AND, I know they are difficult & sensitive. I've done my research & decided to do it. Thanks!!!

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Old 11-14-2003, 12:10 PM   #2
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All i can say is good luck for 1. seahorses have to be hand fed and usually other fish will get to the food before them since the horses are slow. Problem 2. i foresee, is the fact that its a 3 gallon. When you wana cycle that small of a tank be ready for daily water changes. A small increase or decrease in a tank that small can be disasterous.

A reef is one that uses a dsb and lr for filtration. Some people say a saltwater and mean a reef, or some say it and mean just fish only. Really depends on the context of how its used. For live rock there are many suppliers and sponsors here on this forum and other places. Liveaquaria.com is good.
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Old 11-14-2003, 12:16 PM   #3
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I have done research & plan to live/hand feed my horses. I also plan on buying captive-bred because they will be used to feeding & aquarium life. The reason for the small tank is that the Dwarfs do better in 5g or less because the food-concentration is higher and I am having nothing else in with them but live rock, plants & snails.

I am planning on cycling with the rock until the water is stable & then adding the horses. Any other advice is MUCH appreciated!!
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Old 11-14-2003, 01:16 PM   #4
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I would suggest having a larger tank too so that you have an established high quality water source to draw from. For example, you won't be able to have a skimmer in a 3g aquarium. It will definitely help to keep dissolved organics low. So, run this in the big tank and use the big tanks water in the 3g. You get the benefit without the problem of space. Just my opinion.
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Old 11-14-2003, 03:46 PM   #5
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I will admit that I don't know anything about sea horses other than they require special care. I'm glad you have done your research. I found >>this website<< and didn't know if you have seen it. They have captive raised sea horses. Here is another site on >>Sea horse keeping<<. I thought these could help out others interested in what kind of care goes into keeping sea horses. Good Luck with your endeavor!
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Old 11-14-2003, 04:10 PM   #6
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Quote:
A reef is one that uses a dsb and lr for filtration. Some people say a saltwater and mean a reef, or some say it and mean just fish only.
Just because there is no DSB does not mean it is not a reef. A reef can use wahtever you feel is best for filtration. But of course, for a reef, you would need the rock, so LR would be present in a reef. To me, a "reef" tank is a tank that includes LR, and invertabrate life, especially coral of course. While a FO would be, of course, no corals and just fish, maybe LR. Just thought I would chime in .

BTW, good luck with the horsies!

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Old 11-14-2003, 04:17 PM   #7
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I understand what you are saying regarding the size of tank preferred for dwarfs. You are correct in this. What the others are trying to say (I think) is that saltwater
tanks have very unstable water parameters in small tanks. It is highly recommended that people new to saltwater start with the largest tank that they can afford to maintain. Then, after learning to recognize the signs of things going right/wrong with the tanks, getting good experience, then move on to some of the more challenging small tanks. Even though you read about the needs of seahorses, which incidently, I commend you highly for doing, you cannot begin to fathom the sensitivity of these creatures. I speak from experience and they are not for the beginner.

If you choose to continue with this venture, be sure to observe your rock under good lighting for a couple of weeks AFTER the cycle. Seahorses can be killed by rock dwelling things such as aiptaisia, hydroids, stinging corals and small crabs.
You want to make sure your rock does not contain any of this and only by observation will this occur. You mention plants, were these to be live macro? or plastic? If it is live, you will need to learn to prune efficiently or some varieties of the macro can crash your whole tank, taking all life with it, within just a matter of hours.

HTH
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Old 11-14-2003, 05:01 PM   #8
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Hara,

That was a very nice post! Kudos your way!
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Old 11-14-2003, 05:25 PM   #9
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macatua you semantic lover I can only say that from what ive seen and heard a reef is more apt to have live rock in it.
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Old 11-14-2003, 06:19 PM   #10
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Absoloutly!

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