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Old 12-31-2014, 12:59 PM   #1
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AquaTricia 40 gal FOWLR

Hello, everyone.
I received a 40b for Christmas and a stand. I am trying to figure out what I need to begin the tank. I have read conflicting advice, so I decided to ask you guys. I currently have 2freshwater mixed, 2 cichlids and a JBJ 28g reef retrofitted with LEDs. I want something very simple just to admire. I have decided on the skimmer, an AquaC Remora Pro S. Several articles I read stated that with a good skimmer, I will not need an HOB filter. I had planned on a Marineland Biowheel filter. Do I need one at all? Then there's the question of live rock. BRS has Figi live dry rock. Never heard of this. Is it appropriate for my setup? Will I need a heater and lights while cycling, and how often water changes? I will use a cocktail shrimp for cycling. Do any of the bottled cycling formulas actually work to speed up the process? And, what type of lighting? Was planning on LED for the shimmer, but again, conflicting info. Also, I will need a lid. My husband says to get a sheet if plexiglass and put a hinged opening for feeding, but, forgive my ignorance, how do I clean the tank? Remove the entire lid and lights?
I'm sorry this is so long and I asked so many questions, but the reef was basically plug and play. This one I'm building from the ground up. By the way, this will be BB.
Thanks for all the help I know I will get. I trust the info on this website.
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Old 12-31-2014, 11:11 PM   #2
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What a nice Christmas gift!!! I'm a newbie myself so I don't think I can help you much. I just started my first aquarium, a FOWLR, on 11/1 so it is 2 months old.

I was looking into the dry live rock. From what I understand, it is rock that was once live and is now dry. The advantage is that it doesn't come with pests. I read that you have to cure it before cycling the tank and it stinks. I decided to go with 10 lbs live from our LFS and I ordered 10 lbs base rock. My tank took a month to cycle with no water changes and fish food. I only added MicroBacter7 every morning to help with the bacteria growth as recommended to me by our LFS.

Later, I will be setting up a sump with a protein skimmer so I can't help you in that area. I also can't help you with lighting. I have a 36 gallon Aqueon bowfront and I have a FOWLR set up so I am using the lighting that it came with.

I hope you get all of your questions answered! Please post pics!!!
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36- gallon bow front FOWLR established on 11/1/14 with
1 blue- green Chromis, 2 bi- colored Chromis, 3 black and white Oscellaris clownfish, 1 orange and white Oscellaris clownfish, 1 Banggai cardinalfish, 11 Turban snails (1 died), 6 hermit crabs, 3 peppermint shrimp, and lots of love....
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Old 01-01-2015, 10:23 AM   #3
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New FOWLR

Good morning. Happy New Year.
I actually have been following your thread. I can see you are very excited, as I was with getting the reef on board, and now, my FOWLR. Since it is so different from the reef, and I'm building it from scratch, I want to start off right, hence my posting on this website. Good advice here. And so many contribute so you get a lot of ideas.
Good luck with your tank and thanks for responding. I live just up the road from you!
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Old 01-01-2015, 10:52 AM   #4
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You can use the dry rock if you like. You just need to add an ammonia source to start your cycle. Some folks like the bottled bacteria, and while it cannot hurt to use, it's not necessary.
As for the lid, I would suggest not using a lid at all, or at most using a mesh screen. Gas exchange is important, and a tight fitting lid will hinder this.
You don't need a HOB filter, but it's fine if you want to use one.
You will need power heads though. If you can spend the money a single Vortech MP10 may suit this tank well.
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Old 01-01-2015, 11:23 AM   #5
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Appreciate the help mr-x. I had totally forgotten about powerheads. And you say I need only one good one and I have no problem with the cost. Don't neccesarily need an HOB filter with the Remora? Didn't want one anyway. I am good with my water changes. Honestly, the only reason I need a lid at all are 3 cats. 'Nough said. The screen idea sounds good. Keeps out the cats and the jumpers in. Can I buy one already made, or will I need to consruct one? As far as the rock, I was going to use a cocktail shrimp for my ammonia source. Sound OK? Do I do water changes while cycling? Thanks for responding, and on a holiday.
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Old 01-01-2015, 11:50 AM   #6
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You are going to need to build a mesh top. BRS sells everything you need if you don't want to gather this stuff yourself-
DIY Screen Tops - Bulk Reef Supply

Yes to a cocktail shrimp (in a mesh bag or piece of panty hose so it doesn't get all over the place. No to water changes during the cycle.
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Old 01-01-2015, 05:55 PM   #7
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Wow! You are great! I am going to go thru BRS for the rock, so I can get the stuff for the lid and build it to my specs. Glad to know about the water changes. Looking at Orbits, believe it or not on Amazon, for lighting over this tank. Got the idea from Carey from an AA forum. For my tank, would they be appropriate, in your opinion? I greatly appreciate it.
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Old 01-01-2015, 05:59 PM   #8
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For a fowlr, which light you choose really doesn't matter. As long as it turns on and off it'll work


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Old 01-01-2015, 06:39 PM   #9
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Ok. That makes things easy. Last question (I hope). Do I need lights, powerhead, skimmer and heater during the cycle?
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Old 01-01-2015, 06:52 PM   #10
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Lights and skimmer no, but you'll want a heater and some flow for sure


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