So I am just finishing getting my tank's hardware assembled(20 long display with a 29g home built refugium with skimmer) and I'm starting to think of what I would like to stock my tank with (not all at once obviously but over time as the tank matures)
1. Stocking the refugium
The refugium portion of the sump is 14"x12"x12" and this is my plan:
2" base layer of fiji mud across the whole fuge, then egg crating the fuge in half. on the first half, where the water enters the fuge i will put LR
rubble and Maiden's Hair leaving some exposed mud (to maybe place some flame clams later on) In the second half I want to put a 3" layer of volcanic substrate ( i hear it has iron and other good stuff for your plants)with a ball of chaeto floating above. Also I plan on stocking the Fuge with pods
, feeder shrimp,and dwarf feather dusters.
Is this a functional design? Will this make a good breeding ground for the pods
2. Stocking the CUC for main tank.
I have been doing some planning and have picked out a unique CUC, not sure if it's practical but that's why I'm posting before I even add water to my tank!
My main tank will have about 30-35 pounds of LR
in it, I'm going to pick it up soon. (I live in South Florida and am going to a wholesale live rock company to pick pieces that fit my aquascape plans). The sand will be CaribSea live Bahama Oolite.
as for the CUC i planned... here it is:
Lettuce Nudibranch x1
Hermits (probably blue leg) x20
Nassarius Snails x10
Scooter Blenny x1
A shrimp (yet to be decided what type will fit my tank) x1 or x2?
sand sifting cucumber x1
tiger tail cucumber x1
Is this a reasonable CUC for my tank size? Will they take care of all my cleaning needs? I've ready cucumbers can bomb your tank if they get stressed or die but can a 1-2" cucumber do that to a 50g (adding all the water in the system) setup?
3. Fish Stock
Eventually I will want to start adding fish and coral to my aquarium once I've established and stabilized my rock, fuge and CUC to my ecosystem. I don't want to add that many fish since I know it's a small tank.
Here is the list:
Mandarin Dragonet Pair
I am hopping to be able to introduce all of my fish in a short period of time, how long should I wait between fish? I've read that dottyback's do well in groups... should I get a small school of them or would that be to much for my tank? Is this a reasonable amount of fish? Is a pair of Mandarins to much? Should I just have one? I know they need live food from my LR
and my pods
/shrimp from my fuge... will my size setup be able to support 2 of them?
I don't plan on adding to many inverts, but the centerpiece of my tank will be a clam. Here it goes:
Maxima clam (I have 4 T5 bulbs 6 inches aove the water and he will be about 9" deep placed right in the center of the lighting.)
I am also considering an anemone but I'm still debating it. Some people have told me they are a pain. What would be a small (preferably carpet like) species that I could consider for my tank? Would a malu or a yellow carpet be a proper choice?
I have no idea what corals I want to incorporate yet. I have found a variety of different soft hard, sps
that I like but I would like to have everything else in place before going crazy on coral. I might get a simple mushroom coral or ricordea and a red gargonian to get me started and see where it goes from there. Eventually I'd like a brain coral.
As for my flow I'm going to be running a 265gph pump (guessing about 200-230gph after head loss). Is that going to be enough?? My pump also claims to have a "priming screen", will that prevent pods
from making it to the tank or are they small enough to get past that? I recently read that I should have more power (closer to 300-350 gph
) if I plan on having coral... is this true? Would a Mag Drive 3 be the right pump for my tank then?
Any suggestions, thoughts, comments, warnings... anything to point me in the right direction would be greatly appreciated. I've planned this all out based on what I've read and I don't want to go any further without running it past some people who know more about this than me!