WELCOME TO AA!!!
Please do not cycle with live animals.
I would remove the filter, in SW
it can cause dead spots and huge problems later.
I like to premix my water for at least 24hours.
Did you add premixed, store bought water, or just the salt?
What type of tank are you thinking of having? FOWLR
What kind of substrate? Sand, CC (I do not recommend this, but it is a personal preference), bare bottom?
If you buy already cured LR
, this could help your cycle. Cured is the stuff the LFS
generally has in their display tanks, along with fish.
If you are looking to cut some costs, you could go with base (dead, generally bleached looking and cheaper) mixed with some cure LR
Are those FW
lights? If so, remember the SW
will rust metals and you will need to get SW
lights. What kind of lights goes back to weather you want to do reef (some corals need more light and flow than others) or FOWLR
It looks like you will need to get at least 2 phs, for water flow.
A saltwater test kit. Those are about the basics. Keep in mind you will want to shoot for 1.5-2LBs of rock per gallon, for proper filtration.
If I missed something, others will be along to help as well.
Keep us posted!