I know the title of this post isn't very descriptive, but I don't really know how to describe the problem in a short phrase.
I've had my FOWLR
set up for just over a month now - I currently have two ocellaris clownfish - and I'll be adding a royal gramma basslet in a few weeks. The cause of all my problems right now is that my LFS
owner keeps all of his fish tanks at 1.018 SG
and I didn't plan for that very well. He claims that there are a myriad of benefits for keeping all FOWLR
systems at 1.018 SG
such as a reduction in energy expended on osmoregulation and reduction in parasites. After doing some research and based on my own opinion that the conditions of the aquarium should mimic as closely as possible the living conditions of fish in the wild (for wild-caught fish, anyways), I've decided to slowly bring the specific gravity up to around 1.025. I'm doing this through very small daily additions of a saturated salt solution that I premixed; so far, I've brought the specific gravity up to ~1.0205 (NOT 1.025; 1.0205 - VERY DIFFERENT) over three weeks.
Now comes the main problem: quarantining the royal gramma. I was planning on cycling some bio media in my main tank and then using that in the quarantine tank. These are the two options that I see:
- Starting the QT at 1.018 SG since this is environment fish will be coming from. However, I'm not sure if the sudden drop in salinity will kill all the bacteria I built up in the bio media. Could I "drip acclimate" the media over a long(ish) period of time to minimize the kill off? Does it even matter?
- Starting the QT at 1.0205 SG so that the bacteria will remain in tact and then drip acclimate the fish to the higher specific gravity (or is it too much of a difference?)
Which of these two options do you see as the best? In any case, I've stopped adding brine to my main tank so that the difference in specific gravity doesn't increase. Once the royal gramma is out of quarantine and into the tank, I'll resume with the brine until I reach 1.025 SG
Also, should I need to treat the fish with medications, will this specific gravity be a problem?
Thanks for any input!