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Old 03-17-2012, 06:31 PM   #1
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New to Saltwater

Hello everyone! I am new to the world of saltwater aquariums as of last month. Previous to that I have kept various freshwater tanks with a great deal of success so I decided it was time to finally try saltwater. I am currently waiting for my new tank to mature... I started off with a mix of live sand and regular sand, waited about a week to get my pumps etc working and then I added 63 lbs of live rock. (Which even though it isn't the coveted fish I desire was still very interesting to look at.) I am learning a lot as I make my way through the process and despite my excitement I am being patient and progressing through to process at a slow and steady pace. Currently much of my tank has accumulated a brown "dusting" of some sort of algae (I heard this is normal in a new tank) and I'm waiting for my levels to drop. I'm assuming once the Nitrates are under control this unappealing layer will change or disappear (when or how I'm not entirely sure but I'm just watching for now). I am debating what my first addition to the tank should be because like any good aquarist I do not water to endanger any fish by putting them in a tank that is not quite ready. I am trying to decide if I should add a heartier fish or if I should add some snails and/or hermits to clean house first. I find the entire process very enlightening and exciting and I hope to learn all I can from those of you so kind as to share your wisdom with me. Have a great St. Patty's Day everyone!
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Old 03-17-2012, 10:58 PM   #2
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you should probably get some snails and hermit crabs first than wait at least a week before you add your first fish(try to get a hardy fish like a false percula or royal gramma), you can also go to your lfs and ask them to test your water for chemicals. hope this helped
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Old 03-18-2012, 12:36 PM   #3
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Thank you every bit of advice is helpful! Perhaps I will bring my water for testing... I have a test kit but it doesn't have the ones that test water hardness etc, I have been testing salinity, pH, Ammonia, Nitrites, and Nitrates. I'm sort of wondering if I should purchase a power head to circulate the water a bit more too. If I do get snails etc I think I may order them because the prices are better online compared to the stores where I live. Any thoughts on an ocellaris as my first addition after snails?
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Old 03-18-2012, 12:46 PM   #4
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So what size is the tank and have you properly cycled it and tested parameters or are you letting it just sit because without an ammo source you will lose your BB also what is your idea for a finished tank do you want corals or no...the best I could say is since you are still working with a blank canvas look around on all the websites and find something you absolutely must have (fish/coral/invert) and once you do that you can focus around that specimen

Edit* and are you using tap, RO, or Ro/Di water
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Old 03-18-2012, 01:52 PM   #5
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You really only need to test for ammonia, nitrites, nitrates and ph right now. If and when you get into corals you will have to test for more things.

I would also highly recommend a powerhead for circulation. What size is the tank and what kind of hardware do you have? Also, are you thinking of corals now or in the future?
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Old 03-18-2012, 02:19 PM   #6
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The tank is 65 gallons, I have 63 lbs of live rock, my sand is 50/50 live, I used my own tap water and mixed the salt,(a water conditionerwas also added) and I have been "feeding" the tank as directed by a friend.
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Old 03-18-2012, 02:20 PM   #7
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I've been testing from day one and the ammonia slowly went up followed by the nitrites
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Old 03-18-2012, 02:21 PM   #8
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All the hardware specifics are listed in my profile : )
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Old 03-18-2012, 03:06 PM   #9
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First off let me just say buy a Ro/Di and don't look back lol tap water is just gonna cause you a lot of headaches later on down the road
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Old 03-18-2012, 03:13 PM   #10
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What is a Ro/Di?
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