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Old 08-14-2008, 07:54 PM   #1
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Water temperate

I am about ready to get my first fish. I want to start with something cheap (incase it dies). I was thinking about some Damsels. What temperate would I set my heater to?
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Old 08-14-2008, 08:59 PM   #2
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I would not start with damsels, they can become very aggressive to new tank mates. A good stable temp between 72-78 (maybe 76) would be ideal.
Here are some good "starter fish":
Beginner Fish: Tropical Fish for Beginners in Saltwater Aquariums
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Old 08-15-2008, 02:19 AM   #3
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I'd recommend starting with something you actually want. As luck normally goes, you could end up with the longest living fish in your tank as something you never really wanted in the first place!

Along roka64's line... even if you wanted a damsel, don't start with it. Make a list of the fish you want, and start by adding the most docile fish first. End with the most aggressive.
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Old 08-15-2008, 10:12 AM   #4
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Perfect advice!
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Old 08-15-2008, 11:41 AM   #5
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Nah... it wasn't perfect, because upon reading this again I never answered the original question!

Regarding temperature, I'd shoot for between 76 and 78. I ran at 77 for a while, and then once I got a more reliable temperature controller I'm now running between 78 and 79+. The higher temps are closer to what the fish experience in the ocean, but the thinking with the lower temps is that the fish's metabolism will slow down a bit creating less waste in the tank.

If you have corals though, you want to be at the higher range. Many folks run at 80-82 will no ill effects. But at those temps, you want to make sure you don't drift much higher.
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Old 08-15-2008, 03:48 PM   #6
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Sailfin Mollies are an often overlooked saltwater beginnger fish.

Animal Library: Fish: Mollies

They are often sold as freshwater or brackish water fish, so they may be available at more stores in your area. Please look up drip acclimation before buying a freshwater molly and dumping it into a saltwater tank. The above article recomends a 3 hour acclimation.
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Old 08-21-2008, 05:46 AM   #7
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I just realized I spelled temperature wrong both times in my first post.
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