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Old 03-10-2006, 12:47 AM   #1
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Some more questions. More challenging this time

I have a good 20G tank running with 2 clown fishes, 30 - 35 pounds of LR, 20 pounds of LS, protein skimmer, 2 Maxijet 600 powerheads (total 360 GPH).

I have some questions;

1. I've heard that anemones should be added when the tank is a few months old. My tank has a few types of coral growing in it. Would adding vew anemones later on affect my corals? I've heard that anemones damage corals on contact. If my corals grow around the tank, by adding an anemone, would i kill my coral?

2. My protein skimmer produces thounsands of air bubbles in the tank. It makes the tank look very busy and less attractive. Is it how protein skimmers work or is there anyway to stop these bubbles from coming into my tank?

3. My powerheads seem powerful for my little tank. I don't know if i should leave them on at night because i think i should let the water stay calm at night so the fishes could sleep. Am I right or should i just leave them on?

4. Which brand of salt should i buy? It's kind of a newbie question but it wouldn't hurt if u tell me XD. I've been buying SW from a LFS.

5. I have some diatoms growing on my glass, mostly near the sandbed. I have 3 turbo snails but they don't seem to eat the algae on the glass that much. Instead they keep crawling on my LR, knocking my frags of corals off. Any suggestion of what other species i should get? I was thinking of some nudibranches but what kind since i've heard each kind eats each different food.

6. My sand bed is alittle filthy right now. Not b/c of algae but fishes' waste. They are kinda big so the filters couldn't pick them up. Which species of cleaning crew would get rid of these wastes? or how would i get rid of them?

7. My water evaporates over time, the guy at the lfs said i could add tap water (i have RO water at home) to the tank; no need to add SW. Is this true?

That's all for now i think. Thanks you guys lots and lots in advance. Sorry for the long post but i just want to keep my fishes and inverts happy
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Old 03-10-2006, 01:57 AM   #2
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I will randomly respond to your questions.

7. Water evaporates but salt doesn't. When water evaporates, there's a chance for your salinity to raise since there's less water and same amount of salt (salt per measure of water). Just add RO water. Salinity may be affected by skimming and salt creap however. Monitor that.

4. I just use Instant Ocean for my beginner reef. It's working well.

2. Check the intensity of your skimmer. Make sure you're skimming dry suds and not wet suds. You're probably skimming to strong. Remember, it's not a water circulation gadget. It's skimming. Moderate flow of water is OK.

1. Wow, you're brave. I had to go through the right of passage by doing FOWLR for a year until I found the courage to add my first few shrooms and frags in there. Still learning until now. Anemone won't be a part of my list because (a) people in the forum encourage Metal halide lighting even though some insist on PC or VHO lighting as adequate, (b) they do move around and they will harm corals when they are allowed.

3 and 5. I'll have others comment on that.

6. Adequate water circulation helps keep poop and detrius from settling on rocks and on sand. Nothing beats PWC with surface siphoning.
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Old 03-10-2006, 02:53 AM   #3
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Salt: I use Tropic Marin Reef Pro and I'm quite happy with it.

Powerheads: Probably best to let them run all the time. The currents in the ocean never stop, and the fishes sleep just fine there.

Snails: I have a number of Astrea snails and they never bother corals. My large turbo does occasionally ram through some soft corals and push them around. I still have to scrape algae from the glass -- they're not the most efficient eaters.

Nudibranchs: everything I've read indicates they will die quickly from starvation. I wouldn't buy one.
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Old 03-10-2006, 11:01 AM   #4
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Re: Some more questions. More challenging this time

Quote:
Originally Posted by TheRealFF

1. I've heard that anemones should be added when the tank is a few months old. My tank has a few types of coral growing in it. Would adding vew anemones later on affect my corals? I've heard that anemones damage corals on contact. If my corals grow around the tank, by adding an anemone, would i kill my coral? Anemones shoud be added to mature tanks only due to stability issues. That goes for almost any coral with the exception of generally accepted hardy species such as polyps, shrooms, etc. Adding an anemone now is not something you or the animal is ready for.

2. My protein skimmer produces thounsands of air bubbles in the tank. It makes the tank look very busy and less attractive. Is it how protein skimmers work or is there anyway to stop these bubbles from coming into my tank? There are a couple methods to try. It would be helpful to know what brand/size skimmer. If its a new skimmer it may take a couple weeks to 'break in'.

3. My powerheads seem powerful for my little tank. I don't know if i should leave them on at night because i think i should let the water stay calm at night so the fishes could sleep. Am I right or should i just leave them on? Good water circulation is a great thing. However too much circulation can damage corals, stress fish and cause constant sand storms. Only you can judge whats healthy for your tank and whats overkill. The tank should have a nice current to it, not look like a toilet as its flushing.. ; )

4. Which brand of salt should i buy? It's kind of a newbie question but it wouldn't hurt if u tell me XD. I've been buying SW from a LFS. Salt brand is a subjective topic. All I will say is that I have used Oceanic and IO (Instant Ocean) and plan to buy my next 160G bucket from Seachem. Both IO and Oceanic produced good stable water with circulation (RO/DI source water) in about 12 hrs. Again, personal pref however you'll get lots of opinions.

5. I have some diatoms growing on my glass, mostly near the sandbed. I have 3 turbo snails but they don't seem to eat the algae on the glass that much. Instead they keep crawling on my LR, knocking my frags of corals off. Any suggestion of what other species i should get? I was thinking of some nudibranches but what kind since i've heard each kind eats each different food. Glue your frags if they are being knocked over. They will bleach as the constant handling will eventually stress them. Snails are fine but understand no system is self maintaining. You will have to scrape the glass on occasion to clear off algae and coraline if things progress as they should. Certainly additional clean up crew is fine but there is no magic fix for good old elbow grease. Do invest in a good scraper and magnet.

6. My sand bed is alittle filthy right now. Not b/c of algae but fishes' waste. They are kinda big so the filters couldn't pick them up. Which species of cleaning crew would get rid of these wastes? or how would i get rid of them? Consider adjusting your afore mentioned water flow so that some of these dead spots are addressed. Waste is part of the cycle and it only comes out one of two ways..manual intervention or biological breakdown into some other form of waste. Consider a inexpensive peppermint shrimp and/or serpent star. They scavenge and will help keep things clear on the sand bed. If nothing else you can manually remove the waste during your water changes. (Probably the best solution over all, imo, since it stops the cycle at the source)

7. My water evaporates over time, the guy at the lfs said i could add tap water (i have RO water at home) to the tank; no need to add SW. Is this true? Depends on your tap water. However I don't think anyone seasoned in the hobby would advise this. Too many possible contaminants that you won't be testing for. Top off with RO or RO/DI water. Adding tap water is begging for an algae bloom or worse yet, dead stock. Water quality like filtration, is one of the places that for some reason potential hobbiest start to cut corners. Folks will spend thousands of dollars on tanks, stock, rock, sand and lights but somehow leave 2 of the most critical components to whatever project money is left over. Poor water quality and filtration can turn your high dollar investment into a hair algae farm practically overnight. All because people won't spend a couple hundred bucks on a decent ro/di unit (See ebay if you just can't buy a name brand system) and proper filtration (Either in the form of cannister filter or sump). Heaven forbid we buy a skimmer thats actually designed for a tank the size we own. Anyway don't shortcut the one piece that will be ongoing the rest of your tanks life. You may never buy another piece of lr or ballast but you will at some point have to change water if you want a beautiful, healthy system.

That's all for now i think. Thanks you guys lots and lots in advance. Sorry for the long post but i just want to keep my fishes and inverts happy
Peace.
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