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Old 02-05-2009, 11:32 PM   #1
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Exclamation FOWLR. Tx like a Reef Tank?

Went to a new Aquarium store today to try and pick up additional members of my clean up crew. Discussed my tank, it's current state and future plans. Like most of the shops I've been to, I met Hubris, Arrogance and condesention. Should I treat a FOWLR like a Reef tank? I have a 90 gallon tank w a Mega Flow 3 Sump + 540 gph Rio 2500 watt pump (Bio Balls REMOVED). a Coralife needle wheel protein skimmer (upto 125 gallons) and a 9 W UV Filter in the sump. In the tank is about 80 lbs of Carib Alive sand (4 inch base) and 80-90 lbs of Live rock from established tanks plus another Powerhead moving 294 gph. Never had an Ammonia/Nitrite or Nitrate spike. I used prime when I initially put the water in, and Stability daily for the first week. Today's readings
Salinity 1.020, pH 8.3, temp 78 F, Calcium 460, dKA 7, Ammonia/Nitrite/Nitrate 0ppm

1. Do I need to test my dKa and Calcium if I don't have coral?

2. Is this a "Reef" tank if it's FOWLR?

3. Do I need to test for Phosphates?

4. Slowly added fish over the last 2 weeks and still no Ammonia, Nitrite or Nitrate.

5. Should I be placing a Calcium or Alkilinity buffer?

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Old 02-05-2009, 11:55 PM   #2
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I think if you only have FOWLR you only need to test for just ammonia, nitrite, nitrate and ph, but if you like to check further, I think Phosphate is the important one, you don't need calc yet. Also check your Salinity with Hydrometer or Refractometer. I hope that answers a bit

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Old 02-06-2009, 07:10 AM   #3
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1. It would still be good practice and help alleviate future problems by having a balance in chemistries. For example, maintaining a proper pH buffering level.

2. No. Most people assume everyone will add corals down the line, which may not be your ambition and especially if it is a predator tank.

3. I would test for phosphates and try to keep them at a minimal so excessive algae is kept at bay. There is a possibility that high PO4 levels may irritate some fish.

4. Ok.

5. Your Ca is fine. dKA? Do you mean dKH? I am assuming you mean dKH unless my brain isn't functioning this morning, which is low (3.5meq/l is a fair goal) and should be raised. Here is a handy calc. for you: http://home.comcast.net/~jdieck1/chem_calc3.html

You only need to test for for salinity, pH, NH3, NO3, and if you want to go the extra mile Ca, Alk, and PO4 (go the extra mile) These can be a monthly maintenance.
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Old 02-06-2009, 10:15 AM   #4
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good answer, dude, lol. Excellent recommendations. You get up early like me, I guess.
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Old 02-06-2009, 07:57 PM   #5
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Ha, unfortunately work forces me to get up early. I can sleep 10hrs+ and not think twice if I could XD
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