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Old 12-15-2005, 11:21 AM   #1
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The ideal refugium - starting from scratch

I was looking for some input. I have set up a 92 corner tank with a 20gal sump/refugium underneath. Minus the space for the return pump and protein skimmer, I have roughly 9 to 10 gallons of refugium space. I will put live rock rubble in with the return pump and skimmer sections. I do have a 65w grow light underneath also.

How deep a sand bed?

Algae recommendations? I will have a scopas tang taking up residence in the main tank so something I may be able to toss to him as a supplement?

Snails? Hermits? Sandsifter stars? any fish recommendations?

The light cycle? I had read that having your light on opposite of your main tank will keep oxygen levels steady. Also I have read that keeping your light on all the time will keep some macro algae from reproducing out of control. any truths to any of this??

I am trying to go slow and do as much research as possible - thanks for the input.
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Old 12-15-2005, 11:50 AM   #2
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Is the primary purpose of your refugium pod production or nutrient removal?

Based on your questions, I'd guess you're doing nutrient removal. In that case, minimal sand, some basic cleanup crew guys to keep it clean. For algae, if you can find another hobbiest to get clippings from, a variety of small clippings to start with, then whatever grows fastest in your enviroment is doing the maximum nutrient removal.

Are you mixing in tank questions with the refugium question? Or are you trying to put a fish in the refugium?

Opposing light cycles can be helpful if there's alot of photosynthisis going on in your main tank. You can tell if you need to do this by testing your pH frequently over a single day. If you have really low pH just before lights on, and high just before lights off, then a reverse cycle can be good. (A small amount of swing is normal, but you need to watch that you don't go outside the tolerance range for your fish.)

24 hour lighting isn't really benificial. Plants need periods of rest too. The entire point is to make them grow out of control. For every ounce of plant you trim out, that's an ounce of nutrients you have removed from the system. Slowing the growth defeats the point. Frequent prunings also reduces the possibility of the plants breaking down and spreading thier spoors in search of less crowded spaces.
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Old 12-15-2005, 12:01 PM   #3
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Nutrient removal would be the primary goal.

So 2 to 3" sand bed with few porous chunks of LR - and like you said, try a range of macro to see what works
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Old 12-16-2005, 06:56 PM   #4
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sounds good.
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Old 12-18-2005, 07:36 PM   #5
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I run my lighting 24/7 and have plenty of growth and after having grape caluerpa going sexual in my fuge 3 times before I started running my lights 24/7 leads me to believe that 24/7 is the way to go. I have taken the grape out now and have some cheato and fern type macro. It is really your choice how you run your lights on the fuge, you will get many answers on what works for who and why. No need for a SS star, not large enough for them, a few crabs and snails is fine.
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