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Old 10-11-2004, 09:00 PM   #91
steve-s
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Originally Posted by MarkW19
so putting those 2 fish in my tank could cause water quality problems? What sort of problems?

Steve: I'm going to add a coral beauty next.

But, I really want either a 2" copperband butterfly, yellow long-nosed butterfly, or regal tang as my fourth and final fish.
The coral beauty would be okay for the 40 gal but that would be about it for your bioload other than mabye one more small fish. Keep in mind though that dwarf angels can be prone to coral nipping but it's a 50/50 chance either way.

The other three you've mention would be a bad choice for you current set up even if you intend on upgrading. There simpley isn't enough space for even one of them to live adequately in a 40 gal tank. Aside from bioload and aggression, there is a large chance or stunting the fish's natural growth and developement which will have long term affects of the fish's health and typically results in a much shorter life span.

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how often should I be rinsing the filter media balls then?
A few times monthly at the least but preferably weekly. Be sure to use SW though, not FW.

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Will my 2 fish be ok with the huge change in my aquascape?? And, re "cured" liverock. My LFS says their cured liverock is ok to put straight into my tank, with no problems and ammonia spikes etc. Is this true?
The fish might be a little stressed with the addition of the new rock and the aquascaping but they should be fine as long as it doesn't take long. Many people aquascape over and over again but as long as the fish is healthy there should be no concerns.

As far as the LR from the LFS, unless they have had it for a minimum of 6 weeks curing in their store, it should be recured. Additions of even partially cured LR will cause enough of a water quality issue you may lose a fish. Unless you know these people very well I wouldn't take the risk. It's really your call though.

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I've upgraded my lighting - 2 36" actinic T5, 2 36" white T5 and moonlight LEDs for late at night (12am - 3am) and morning (9am - 12pm).

I'm just wondering about the order of the 4 T5 tubes in my lid - from front to back: white at front, then actinic, then white, then actinic. Is that ok?
It doesn't matter much really but most of your coral will likely end up running along the middle of the tanks rockscape. Personally I would have both white in the middle and the actinics on the outside slots.

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have 9 hermit crabs (assortment of blue and red legged) and a fire shrimp. Will my corals be safe with them?
Nothing to worry about...

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I'm keeping 2 x pachyclavularia sp., 2 x zoanthus sp., 2 x discosoma sp., 1 x sarcophyton sp., and 1 x capnella sp.

Is it really neccessary to add the actinic lighting to my 2 39w white T5s to keep these corals?
Actinics are not a necessary item in the strictest meaning of the word but they do help the fuorescence of many corals species and greatly improves the overall visual appeal of a reef tank IMO. Zoo's, GSP and shrooms will definately show some good colors and the toadstool will possibley take on a pink, yellow or greenish hue. The capnella will have a little more defined color under the actinics but will not fluoresce.

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Are these all just different shapes of the same coral (Toadstool leather coral), so therefore they all have exactly the same requirements?
All three of the images you posted will have the same basic care requirements. The last one looks more like Cladiella though, not a Sarcophyton.

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Is carbon really necessary do you think? What could happen to my corals if I don't use it (I'm going to be feeding them DT's Live Phytoplankton)?
No carbon is not absolutely necessary but given you have no skimmer or refugium with macro algae to harvest, a good idea to use at least weekly. DT's is a decent product but you really don't need it for those corals although it will bolster the pod populations. The corals will only benefit from it marginally. If you do use it though do not overdo it. Over use will just cause enormous algae problems. Try to stick with once a week at most.

Cheers
Steve
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Old 10-11-2004, 09:17 PM   #92
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Thanks a lot Steve, very useful as always! :P

I'll forget the DT then and not feed them (I guess they'll get leftovers etc. and of course provide most of their food themselves).

And, I really like the look of my lighting as it is (ie. 2 white T5s). Its very bright and compliments my tank perfectly. By adding the actinics, will it definitely be an improvement in the overall look of my tank? ie. even if I didn't have any corals, and added the actinics, would it make my tank look a lot better? And, will there be a visual difference between going actinic-white-actinic-white or actinic-white-white-actinic? I do want corals that fluoresce under my actinics - I'm having button polyps, capnella and a couple of toadstool leathers. Will none of these fluoresce then?

So, you'd change the carbon each week, as opposed to a lot of people that only use it for 3-4 days each month? I'm going to put 6 tablespoons of (high-grade) carbon in a filter bag in my Eheim each time, as recommend by Shelton. Will this be a good amount, with definitely no bad effects on waterchemistry etc./no other problems caused by the carbon, and no chance of overdosing?

How do I cure my own liverock when I get it from them then??

And, I haven't been rinsing my filter balls at all since I got the filter 7 months ago. What will happen if they're not rinsed at all? And, what's the best way to rinse them - just get a bowl of tankwater and poor the balls into it and stir them round a bit, and wipe the inside of the filter/baskets a bit with a papertowel to get rid of any goo (leaving the water inside the filter when I do it so that it's not dry)?

Finally, after the coral beauty, what fish do you recommend for my final fish? I haven't really seen anything that takes my fancy other than the bigger fish :/ I ideally want something that's yellow and flat (like a yellow tang or longnosed butterfly...d'oh! :P)?

Cheers,

Mark
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Old 10-11-2004, 09:31 PM   #93
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Just to chime in... my dwarf angel has just started nipping at my zoos and xenia this is after many months and I'm too attached to it now to get rid of it though so it's a bit of a dilemma.. I would strongly advise against any kind of angel (like the coral beauty) if you want to keep soft corals. I knew it would happen eventually.. but you always figure you'll beat the system forever, lol.
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Old 10-11-2004, 09:35 PM   #94
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I really like the look of my lighting as it is (ie. 2 white T5s). Its very bright and compliments my tank perfectly. By adding the actinics, will it definitely be an improvement in the overall look of my tank? ie. even if I didn't have any corals, and added the actinics, would it make my tank look a lot better?
The addition of actinics is mainly a visual effect on the tank and corals depending on species. It does not really do much more than enhance the visual appeal. It does not make them grow any better than it would adding two more white lights. If you prefer the white lights only, I would still suggest the extra addition if you progress with more coral types. Personally, looking at the tank late at night with just the actinics is quite appealing and can often be a soothing end to any day. I'd recommend their use no matter what the benefits (if any really).

Quote:
And, will there be a visual difference between going actinic-white-actinic-white or actinic-white-white-actinic?
Not reall.

Quote:
I do want corals that fluoresce under my actinics - I'm having button polyps, capnella and a couple of toadstool leathers. Will none of these fluoresce then?
Depending on the species of buttons you have, they are the only ones that will have some virant color. The other two will only take on a bit of a hue, not really fluoresce though.

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So, you'd change the carbon each week, as opposed to a lot of people that only use it for 3-4 days each month?
If you only plan on running it occassionally, I'd add an ounce or so weekly, let it run a day and then toss it. If you let it stay in 24/7, put a few ounces in (space depending) and change it monthly.

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How do I cure my own liverock when I get it from them then??
Curing Live Rock? I didn't even know it was sick!!


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And, I haven't been rinsing my filter balls at all since I got the filter 7 months ago. What will happen if they're not rinsed at all?
The build up of detritus will make controlling water quality quite difficult. Keeping the filter media debris free will make your own maintenance much smoother, the flow will remain optimum and the filter itself will last much longer.

Quote:
And, what's the best way to rinse them - just get a bowl of tankwater and poor the balls into it and stir them round a bit, and wipe the inside of the filter/baskets a bit with a papertowel to get rid of any goo (leaving the water inside the filter when I do it so that it's not dry)?
That's the easiest way to clean the bioballs but I wouldn't wipe the inside walls of the filter. Place a small amount of water in the canister once empty and simpley "swish" the water around briskly. Any loose materials will come free and can then be disgarded. Cleaning it completely like that is not necessary.

Cheers
Steve
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Old 10-11-2004, 09:35 PM   #95
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Hehe...grrr, I love the coral beauty though.

Can they kill the coral by nipping at it then?
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Old 10-11-2004, 09:40 PM   #96
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Yep, my xenia is on it's way out after only a few days - it's actually being eaten not just nipped. The zoos don't fully open anymore so I dunno how long they will last.
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Old 10-11-2004, 09:46 PM   #97
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Cheers Steve...

I just can't imagine how the 2 actinics with the whites will affect the look of my tank...less white I guess! And perhaps even less bright (more blue and soothing?)? Will it definitely be an improvement with the actinics and whites on at the same time though - ie. I'll think "wow that's really good"? :P The button polyps are Protopalythoa sp. by the way :P

What would you recommend then - running the carbon just one day a week or 24/7? Which is better?

And, re. filter: how long is the filter ok to be empty of water (for the bacteria/balls etc.)? There's quite a bit of detritus building up in the outside wet/dry part. But I've read in the manual that this compartment should never be opened up...what do you think? It's the part circled below.

Any suggestions for my final fish?
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Old 10-11-2004, 09:48 PM   #98
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Atari: is it not 50/50 that the Coral Beauty will nip at my corals though?
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Old 10-11-2004, 09:59 PM   #99
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I don't think it's 50/50.. it isn't really as simple as it will or it won't.. IMO it's inevitable. I've seen them do it from the minute they were added.. or like mine after several months.. and I've also heard the other extreme where they were fine for years before they started it.

Trust me it's not a good feeling when you see it.. not to mention they are all but impossible to catch and return.
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Old 10-11-2004, 10:01 PM   #100
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About the actinics... get them!

You will never go back to plain whites afterwards.. infact you will realise just how yellow your plain whites really are. The actinics go perfectly with the whites and give a nice clean look.. and then like Steve said at the end of the day it's nice and soothing to have just the actinics alone.
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