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Old 02-16-2004, 11:09 AM   #1
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starter corals

well first let me begin by telling you about my tank. it is a 10 g (i know, tiny!) w/ aprox 8 lbs LR, 2 in bed of LS, external bio-wheel filter, 200 w heater, protein skimmer, and standard lighting hood. i have a couple snails and hermit crabs, along with a coral beauty and a longnose hawkfish. i was looking to add a royal gramma (or is that too much bioload since its not FO?)
all the parameters of my water are within normal limits w/ a pH of 8.3. i have yet to check calcium levels but i know they should be aroung 400 for proper coral development.
i have read in some books that leather corals are particularly hardy, but i dont know. what do you guys suggest that my fish (esp the coral beauty) wont bother and that wont overwhelm my tank? i like the look of brain corals, zoanthids, and some of the hard corals like seriatopora. what do you reccomend with hard vs soft corals, large vs small poylp?
any help at all that you guys could give me would be super. even reccomendations on a book to get would be good, because i havent found a good one for the starting reefer! thanks!

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Old 02-16-2004, 12:00 PM   #2
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Kate, I would first strongly urge you to not add any more fish. Infact both the hawkfish and coral beauty should really be in a much larger setup.

Do you have a single or double or tripple florecent hood? Normal florecent lighting is really not going to cut it for corals but if you have a double hood you 'might' be able to get by with leathers and shrooms if you put them toward the top.

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Old 02-16-2004, 10:19 PM   #3
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well i wanted to upgrade my hood anyway before getting the corals. what would be the best setup for that? halides? i have seen a lot of lights that say they are designed for corals/reefs, namely zoo-med's line, "coral sun" and "reef sun". are they any good? i would like to keep the tank covered in some manner to keep from loosing my hawkfish to a suicide jump, is there some way i could get a suspended light system and still have the top covered in some way?
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Old 02-17-2004, 12:20 AM   #4
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I would build a canopy and install a couple of 32w PC's. That will be plenty for a 10g. You can keep some shrooms, zoanthids, yellow polyps, and star poylps in there with no trouble. I think many of the other soft corals will outgrow your tank quickly. I agree that your bioload is too high now. The coral beauty, at its adult size, is about twice the load you want in a tank this size. If both of your fish are juveniles, you can probably keep them in there for a while, but I'd think about upgrading to a larger tank before too long. Have you checked your nitrate levels? You really want them below 10 with 0 being preferable before adding corals to the tank. I'm not trying to discourage you here, just trying to help you not make a mistake that will cost you $$/livestock. I kept a 10 for a while with one small ocellaris clown and it worked out well until I got bitten by the "bigger tank bug". You can use eggcrate to cover the top of the tank. It will keep the fish from carpet diving and still allow for good gas exchange.
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coral, corals, starter

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