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Old 03-24-2008, 08:40 PM   #1
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Going a different direction with tank???

Ok, So here's the deal I have been planning a 46g Reef for sometime, I have asked lots of questions and learned a lot about what it takes to have a successfull reef. I am ready for a corals and a reef tank but financially I don't know if I want to go REEF I have a tank with sand plenty of live rock RO/DI water 15g refugium. The whole 9 yards. And practically no life in my tank now but a damsel 3 snails and a sally lightfoot crab. Ultimately I want to enjoy my aquarium just like everyone else but I really have not been. Corals are expensive and look amazing but don't really do much. And the fish I can keep with a reef tank are kinda boring IMO. So the idea is up in the air but I am debating a FOWLR tank with some more aggressive fish for my 46g tank. This does present another issue there aren't many aggressive fish for a 46g tank. Here is what I have come up with so far that possibly could stand the test of time in a 46g tank. Valentini Puffer/Flame Angelfish/Coral Beauty/snowflake eel/Dwarf lionfish/ And possibly others not all of them of course just some possible candidates. I think a cool fish would be more enjoyable to me than all of the corals and from what I understand some of this fish may do ok with certain types of corals. And I need to study what invertabrates won't be bothered by these types of fish. Compatability and stocking I am totally lost on what to do. I just know a couple fish would be cheaper and less stressfull to me than a full blown reef. I have a new house and family to where I have other needs for my finances. Im afraid that If I go full blown reef I will suck every dime that we have to feed my addiction to corals Any thoughts are appreciated.
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Old 03-24-2008, 08:54 PM   #2
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Patience is the key. My tank is 10 yrs of work. I would only buy a coral every 4 or 5 months. In the begining I would look at a pretty barren tank but I was patient and now I`m reaping from that. You dont have to have it all now just build on it as much and as fast as you can go. As you can see my vote is go Reef.
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Old 03-24-2008, 10:59 PM   #3
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I agree with Mike...take things slow...it is okay. This hobby is expensive enough. If you take things slow you can research all of your purcuhases while you wait. Time is what it takes, especially if you want a reef. Just like a garden, you start small and enjoy the bounty in the end.
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Old 03-25-2008, 02:15 AM   #4
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I think you've already answered part of your question... if you want an aggressive tank, you're very limited as to what you can put in a 46g - more limited than the fish you can put in a reef. I wouldn't consider dwarf angels "aggressive", but they're something that you probably wouldn't want to put in a reef.

I really don't have one opinion or another - I'm a "do what you feel is right" type of person, and can understand the financial issues you mention. If "disposable" income is in short supply, starting a reef is probably not the most fiscally sound thing to do. On the flip side though... you've shelled out most of the up front costs already. From here on out, the amount you pay is pretty much determined by your patience in finding the right corals, for the right placement, at the right price. That in itself can become a hobby!
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Old 03-25-2008, 09:18 AM   #5
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The fish you mentioned are reef safe...to an extent. Of course it's hit and miss with pygmy angels (my coral beauty doesn't touch any coral), but the the other fish you list will not bother any coral. You just have to watch what you put in the tank with them. You can forget about any shrimp or any small fish that will fit in a lion or eels mouth. You can have a little of both. A few corals and a few aggressive fish.
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Old 03-25-2008, 11:35 AM   #6
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The fish you mentioned are reef safe...to an extent. Of course it's hit and miss with pygmy angels (my coral beauty doesn't touch any coral), but the the other fish you list will not bother any coral. You just have to watch what you put in the tank with them. You can forget about any shrimp or any small fish that will fit in a lion or eels mouth. You can have a little of both. A few corals and a few aggressive fish.
So I really like the Idea of one of the fish I mentioned I realize its taking a chance I just don't know how to go about making that happen? The Mandarin I was debating sounded great until I realized I probably couldn't supply the pod population. Looks like I just need to study it for a while. So the fish I listed somewhat coral safe depending on Luck really and not invertabrate safe? I guess it depends on the fish for sure Where can I study behaviors and compatability of these fish? The LiveAquaria website is not really as in depth as I want? Whats a good book or guide to fish/coral/invertabrate compatability and tank size? I guess this is what I was after with my post Reef Safe fish.
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Old 03-25-2008, 06:41 PM   #7
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I was interested in a dwarf lionfish also. The deal with them are...they are reef safe..will not bother your corals. BUT..they will eat anything mobile that will fit in its mouth (ie. shrimp, crabs, snails, other smaller fish). So you're basically going to be w/o a cleanup crew..so lots of scrubbing the glass and vacuuming the sand.

I have some cool fish in my reef tank. Orchid Dottyback, 6-line wrasse, Firefish Goby, Neon Goby, Full Moon Reef Goby, Mated Pair of Gold Stripe Maroon Clownfish, Tangaroa Goby, Wheelers Watchman Goby and Greenbanded Goby.

They all have great personality. The Dottyback, 6-line and clowns are always out and about. The gobys are skirting around the sand. The Watchman and Tangaroa Goby are paired with pistol shrimp, that interaction is cool to watch.

The Fire Shrimp are very colorful and always out looking around.

Now that I have my Rose Bubble Tip Anemone, the clowns are hosting it. It's cool how they guard and defend the anemone from whatever gets close to it. If I stick my hand in they will pound on my fingers to try and chase me away. When I feed the tank, they grab food and spit it at the anemone to feed it.

If I had it to do over, I would have left out the hermit crabs. Gotten more snails and shrimp.

So...lots of cool stuff can be done with a reef tank. Yes..corals don't do much, but when the lights come on and they are out in full bloom they are awesome to look at.
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Old 03-25-2008, 11:01 PM   #8
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Thanks for all the posts very helpfull. There are so many choices and directions to take it I just don't know how to move forward. I need some study material. I think before I start buying livestock I should buy a book or 2 about the different species of corals and fish.

Can anybody recommend some good study material with coral requirements fish behaviors and tank requirements??????
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Old 03-31-2008, 07:35 PM   #9
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Ok I gave in to the Reef idea after talking with my wife I put too much into it to give up now. I just placed an order with Dr Fosters & Smith for Kalkwasser and the 2.5g Aquadose system. Along with some Salt and Sand.
I also am placing an order with Barrier Reef in Renton WA (2hours from my house) Here is what they are selling me.

Green Star Polyp $10.00
Pink Zoanthid (Like SKU#507 our website) $19.99
Turquoise Blue Zoanthid (SKU#521) $19.99
Green Zoanthid $19.99
Orange Ricordea florida $19.99
Green Ricordea florida $11.99
Yellow Polyp Rock $19.99
Single Red w/ Blue Dot Mushroom $3.00
Small Green/Brown Palythoa Zanthid $5.00
Orange Spot Signal Goby $14.99
Tiger Pistol Shrimp $19.99
2- Fighting Conch $7.99ea
10-Nassarius Snail $.90ea
5-Astreae Snail $.90ea

- Barrier Reef Aquariums

I hope these are good prices as I am new to the game

I also need to know about how to introduce this mass quantity of livestock into my tank successfully. any advice is appreciated
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Old 03-31-2008, 08:18 PM   #10
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Looks like a real nice start to the coral collection. With that list tho, there is no need for kalkwasser. Kalk adds calcium and alk and the soft coral polyps you ordered don't really use either. Hard corals (LPS or SPS) use calcium, alk and magnesium. Just remember, don't dose if your not testing for it. You can check your ca and alk and add a little to supplement it if necessary, but with the list of corals you have, you will not need to dose daily.

Those corals/inverts will add virtually no bio load to your tank, so just acclimate them and put em in.
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