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Old 05-30-2008, 11:35 PM   #1
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Starting Over...

After a move two years ago, things just progressively went downhill with my 140g FOWLR and I was never able to get back to the nice, stable environment that I had pre-move. Cyano and aiptasia, and ick took over and that was the beginning of the end. The last inhabitant, a rather nasty, opinionated miniatus that was responsible for the downfall (and consumption) of several other tank mates finally gave up the ghost about a week and half ago. I left all of the mechanicals running, but turned the lights off while I pondered what to do.

So, I really think that I want to remain in this hobby and want to give it another shot. Afterall, the investment so far has been nothing to sneeze at. I'd like to get some help from the forum for anyone who has started over, without really ever having shut down.

I've got approx 180lbs of live rock, that i assume is still "good", so is it okay to reintroduce it to the restarted tank? What type of cleaning/sanitation do I need to go through with my skimmer, my wet/dry, etc.? I've pretty much assumed that once it get the tank and overflows scraped down that I've got multiple, massive PWCs coming and a re-cycle period. That just sounds too simple, and I'm sure that I'm missing some steps.

Any suggestions?
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Old 05-31-2008, 08:56 AM   #2
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I would consider letting the tank stay fish free for about 8 weeks to make sure the parasite (ick) is gone. In the meantime let your tank run doing some every other week 20% PWC`s and be doing some water test on your water also to make sure you are progressing. I would also add a pinch of flakes to your tank to help feed the nitrifying bacteria. The decomposing of them will add ammonia that will generate the cycle process. Make it a small pinch. Hope all goes well.
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Old 05-31-2008, 12:42 PM   #3
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Where is the LR now if now in the tank?
Did you take it out and let it dry? If then it is now base rock. Perfectly ok to add back, but you'll want to add some new LR to add some life back into the tank.

What is your subrtate? Sand? Now may be a good time to remove it and new sand if it's quite old.

Do you intend to maintain this as a FOWLR? If so then you should be good with your skimmer and your wet/dry.

Cleaning in white vinegar followed by thorough rinsing in fw will help clean anything that needs it.

Then I would do as Mike suggested and recycle the tank, leaving it without any fish for 8 weeks. I would also set up a QT tank at this time to house any new fish for a month before adding them to the main tank. That will prevent the introduction of Ich or other maladies into the main tank. Add your livestock back SLOWLY, like 1-2 fish per month to give the biofilter time to catch up.

Any questions, please post back and ask. Welcome back!
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Old 05-31-2008, 02:05 PM   #4
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Live Rock is still in the tank, so the bio filter should still be somewhat in tact. The substrate (live sand) is less than a year old, so I think I should be ok. I will be keeping it as FOWLR, but got to wondering about whether I need to just leave the lights off for an extended period to knock back some of the cyano and hair algae. Thoughts?

Also, the only thing that has thrived lately has been the aiptasia. Are they going to die off over this 8 week period as well? Don't get me wrong, it won't hurt my feeling. I was kind of looking forward to the first new inhabitant of the tank being a raccoon butterflyfish and watching him kick the crap out of the aiptasia.

Thanks for the help.
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Old 05-31-2008, 09:41 PM   #5
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Cutting the lights off will be OK. The aiptisia will need to be gotten rid of. Read this

FantasyReef Databases-Viewing item "Aiptasia Removal Methods"
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