Hello! The name's Petrichor and I am going to be attempting my first reef tank build! I had a successful 40 gallon FOWLR
with two anemone several years ago and eventually sold it when I moved to college. Since then I've learned so much more from that experience and also through reading, pestering my LFS
, and lurking this forum. My parents have decided to purchase a tank that I could take care of and eventually pass onto them when I graduate and move out, so I'll be in charge of finding and getting everything together and making sure they're not trying to stick a bunch of tangs and seahorses into this thing. But enough of that; onto the interesting stuff.
Tank Set-up so far:
24 Gallon Current USA Cardiff AIO nanotank (23"x23"x20"H)
Reef Capable Lighting
Currently I have the tank running regular RODI
water to check for leaks and such (it's going to be drained after the leak check until I get a better stand) and make sure the pumps and skimmer are working, but I have a few questions I'd like to ask. In no particular order:
1-I plan on keeping mostly LPS
corals, particularly hammers, torches, bubble corals, zoas, and mushrooms. This light should be suitable for those, correct?
2-What filter media should I look into buying? The Cardiff has a protein skimmer, ATO, and sponges, bioballs, and carbon stock with the tank. I will be removing the bioballs as I read they are more trouble than they're worth, and removing the carbon, so I was wondering what the best thing to use for filtration would be? I read Purigen and filter floss is a good combination that a lot of people use. I also plan on purchasing a LED
light to grow chaeto in the back filter area.
3-I am looking for a chiller (probably a 1/10 HP one from Craigslist) and was wondering if this would add enough flow to the tank to negate needing to buy a 425 gph
Koralia nano. I live in Arizona, so a chiller is a must (tank was a steady 88F all day).
4-About how much live rock/sand should I have? I was thinking 30 pounds of sand for about 2-3 inches deep and 20-30 pounds of LR
5-Do I need a 100 or 150 watt heater in Arizona with our 100+ degree weather?
6-What other supplies do I need to just set-up and maintain the tank, not including fish maintenance supplies? I know I need: a hydrometer, a thermometer, a saltwater test kit (API Master Liquid Kit), salt (Instant Ocean Reef Crystals), sand and LR
, and various other fish supplies like a net and algae magnet.
7-Now onto the fish. My mother is deciding the corals (anything long and flowing like an anemone is what she wants) so it's mostly up to me to get the livestock. I'd like to avoid hermits in the CUC because of their hatred of snails, but would be willing to get maybe a few and a combination of different snail breeds to maintain the walls and sandbed.
CUC (probably from reefcleaners.org):
----Dwarf Cerith Snails x3
----Florida Cerith Snails x3
----Nassarius Vibex Snails x3
----Nerite Snails x3
----Zig Zag Periwinkle Snails x3
----Assorted Hermits x3 (if I get them) + shells
Fish (in stocking order):
----Green Clown Goby
----Clownfish (probably ocellaris or percula, something tank-bred)
----Firefish (will this fight with the dottyback because of the similar shape if I get both?)
----Yellow-Tailed Damselfish (I know they can be little SOBs, but I really, really, really want a blue and/or yellow fish)
Inverts (not in stocking order):
----Peppermint or Cleaner Shrimp (most likely the former, or both if able)
----Lettuce Sea Slug (I don't think it has an exclusive diet like other slugs, right?)
----Maxi-Mini Anemone (in the far future if possible)
----I saw a shell-less crab in the store that had little fans for claws that would swipe at the water for food. I have no idea what it's name was, and I couldn't find it on Google, but it was adorable and I need to find it because it stole my heart, so hopefully that could go in the tank (the crab, not the heart, I need that still).
8-Last question! If I wanted to add a sump onto this tank, what would that require? I know I can fit a ten gallon under the tank, but I'm not sure how to get water to and from the sump.
If you've made it this far then you deserve an Internet cookie for reading that wall of text. Congratulations! Hopefully some of you will have answers to my burning questions and will help me make this reef tank a beautiful masterpiece. I look forward to learning more about this hobby and sharing my tanks' journey with all.
Also I hope this is the right forum, because if not then that's awfully embarrassing.