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Old 02-03-2012, 03:08 AM   #1
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saltwater vs reef??

Hi all we've been looking into setting up a 75 gallon tank for saltwater. My question is what's the difference in saltwater and reef?? Also what do you feel is a better choice?? Thanks for any and all answers
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Old 02-03-2012, 03:14 AM   #2
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Hi there and welcome to the salty side. Are you considering between a FOWLR (Fish only with Live Rock) and a Reef?
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Old 02-03-2012, 10:33 AM   #3
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There's a fish only with live rock......and there's reef which is corals.
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Old 02-03-2012, 10:41 AM   #4
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Yeah your question isn't quiet phrased right, but the literal answer to that would be "no difference". Rick phrased it the way you were thinking. Basically (and this is me learning here the last few months) is that a FOWLR tank doesn't have corals or inverts etc in it. Why a FOWLR? Lots of fish eat inverts and corals in the "real world" so you have to decide what you want in the tank.

The first question id "do you want to keep real coral" in the tank? The next question is what type of fish do you want to keep with the coral. If any of the fish on your wishlist aren't "reef safe" or "reef compatible" (which you can find out with a few simple Google searches) you have a decision to make.... would you rather have that fish or all the corals.

For example, I REEEEAALLLYYY wanted a Humu Picasso more than any other fish but I wanted a reef because of all the other life involved. So I decided to go reef because the triggers aren't reef friendly. Dr F&S has a nice overview of their fish to help you out Saltwater Aquarium Fish for Marine Aquariums: Humu Picasso Triggerfish
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Old 02-03-2012, 05:46 PM   #5
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Mr bee I had a similar scenario when I started. I love clown triggers. Just blows my mind that is natural colors and spotting. Under the sea is a crazy place. Because of all the diversity in a reef is also why I sacrificed not getting a clown trigger.

Now I only have some saltwater themed shelving with a clown trigger on it. Coloring not exactly true to life but I knew what it was when I saw it. Actually got dragged to Peir 1 with the wife and saw it there.

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Old 02-03-2012, 05:53 PM   #6
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well... only time will tell how I do in the SW world. If things go well who knows... maybe I'll build another tank and just do a fowlr and get that trigger I want hehee.
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Old 02-03-2012, 06:03 PM   #7
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For me tank size ends up trumping my decision. If setting up a 75 gallon tank a reef tank is what I would do. Start checking out the size on the on non reef compatible fish and a 75 gallon for me isn't what I would want.
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Old 02-04-2012, 05:02 AM   #8
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IMO, I would save yourself money in the long run and buy everything "reef capable". Alot of people that start with FOWLR eventually end up converting to reef, myself included. Look into it, decide what you want to keep and what it is or isn't compatible with. This is overlooked alot and ends with fish eating other fish, inverts, and coral. Take it slow and do alot of research. Enjoy!
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Old 02-04-2012, 05:20 PM   #9
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Thanks for all your help guys!
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