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Old 02-19-2014, 06:33 PM   #1
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small tide pool tank help.

I have only ever had fresh water tanks. I have had newts, fish, aquatic frogs, cray fish and some small shrimps.

What I am wanting to do. When I get enough information and can get the hardware needed and room for it is to start a small salt water tank. I want it to be different then every other tank I seen with big bright fish or clowns and anemones. I would like local sea life.

Now I know a lot of people will think special regulations and licences are needed. I am looking into it and there are some restrictions I need to follow for what I can do. So what I am asking for what can go in the tank is lawful in my area. ( I will make notes to explain a couple rules when needed)

So for the tank what I want in it is fairly simple and basic, but I don't know about the hardware I would need. I also know adding live creatures take along time and so does the cycling.

I want to start with a planted tank with eel grass, dulce and maybe some sea lettuce.

If that can run for a while being okay I want to add some barnacles, and limpets. Possibly some mussels too (saltwater fishing license needed)

Then if all that is okay a kelp crab. (saltwater license, can only be male crab)

(No fin fish because you can not transport them alive.)

Now for shell development I need calcium in the water. So for a sub strait I was thinking:

- Crushed oyster shell (farm supply store sell it for chickens to maintain eggs)
- Small beach rocks
- Local beach sand

Ornaments will just be rocks I gather from the beach. Probably some live rock from a store too.

I also plan to cycle my own water to get the levels similar to the beach I would gather the specimens from.

What type of hardware and how small of a tank? I was hoping 15-25 gallons.

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Old 02-19-2014, 06:47 PM   #2
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Builds like this are sometimes uncommon, but beautiful in their own way. This might help out some. I don't recall what all info he gives about the build.
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Old 02-26-2014, 06:23 PM   #3
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Thank you for the link, it will definitely come in handy. It is so hard to get information on specific setups. Because I don't want to over do it and waste money but I don't want to under do it and harm the fish/creatures.

A buddy at work suggested I look into finding a local breeder because other countries may want our fishes as exotic pets so I maybe be able to actually get a small fin fish too.
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Old 03-26-2014, 07:35 PM   #4
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Sorry for the double post but it has been a month.

SO with some research on the plants and life form wanted I think a tank can be done. Not a very exciting tank but an educational one.

It was suggested by the local pet store was to see if I can get the plants to be okay first for as long as possible.

Beach sand (baked in the oven on low for a couple hours to kill anything I don't want. same with any rocks or shells)

Plants, Fucus and ell grass are easily found on low tides and in some cases fully on ground and exposed to the sun for hours. So they should be okay in a tank. They may not need any cooling system. A good lighting system though.

Life forms, Barnicals, limpets and chiton all can be found exposed to hight temperatures high salinities, and on dry land. Mussels and Oysters (still have to check Department of Fisheries) Should also be okay if acquired when quit small. Kelp crabs I have seen people on other forums having them in tropical tanks being adjusted and okay in them for years.

A bubbler is going to be needed due to low oxygen in the water, Good lighting and ferts.

So I will get a tank (10 - 15 G), lights, a bubbler and pump. I have a thermometer small rocks and gravel. and a couple shells.

I am going to try a plant only tank for at least a full summer and monitor the temps and chemistry and do more research on life forms and legality.
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Old 03-26-2014, 07:39 PM   #5
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Where do you live? If you're near cool water you will need a chiller. Also, bubblers are a no go with salt as you will get huge amounts of salt creep.
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Old 03-26-2014, 07:44 PM   #6
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Instead of an air bubbler get a skimmer, it will do more for adding oxygen than a bubbler ever will plus it won't add salt creep issues plus it will help remove waste from the water.
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Old 04-02-2014, 05:51 PM   #7
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Thank you for the replies. I did not add a bubbler, which I have one on hand.

I showed my landlord the tank and he has a similar setup but a larger tank. He said they do fairly well and gave me some tips.

His tank is 15Gal with coral gravel and under gravel filtration with normal hood lights. He keeps it in the lower section of the house in a closed cooler room. With a small power head.

His daughter has a 30gal tank with no filtration, a power head and it does well too.

I set mine up yesterday (Tuesday). On Monday I picked some oysters and had them in the fridge in a bowl. In the bowl on Tuesday night (about 30 hours after harvest in the fridge) there where some small crabs and limpits. So I tossed them in and they seem to be okay. I tossed in a piece of Mussel and the crabs where eating it.

The Tank is 10 Gal and has LED lights, and an in tank filter (rated 2-15Gal) with no filter (used to add oxygen and it adds a small current) It has Fucus, eel grass (two shoots) and some sea lettuce and some other algae.

It has lots of hiding holes and I tossed in some various sized snail shells.

The tank right now is about the same as water level in local tide pools and the critters seem to be happy. (which may change) I am going to keep a major eye on this tank. I check temps every couple hours. even a couple times at night just to see the temp drops. So far temps are all safe as far as local waters go.

I might need a chiller in the summer peek heats. My land lord suggested the soda bottle with ice method due to the tanks small size.

I will update every wednesday. I do not plan to add any fin fish. I need to check with Department of Fisheries first, if o.k.ed tide pool skulpin and stickle backs.

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