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Old 11-16-2014, 07:52 AM   #1
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Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Dublin, Ireland
Posts: 13
Getting Started (again)

Hi all,

Put this up on a another forum also but didn't get any feedback there so I'm hoping someone here can give me some advice.

After a recent health scare, i've decided to take the plunge and set up my first salt water aquarium. Was going to do this a number of times over the last few years but things kept getting in the way and I'd put it off till 'next month', which never seemed to arrive. However, I've now realised that I need to get on an do these things instead of just dreaming. Unfortunately I don't have the largest budget in the world having just spent a small fortune on doctors but ...

Having done a good bit of reading on this forum and gotten a few books, I went to my local shop here in Dublin and they currently have a deal on a marine starter tank for just over 500EUR (about $450US).

45 US gal (165 litre) bowfront tank with T5 lights and canister filter, heater.
15lb live rock
18lb live sand
pre-mixed water
3 hermits, 3 snails, 1 cleaner shrimp
1 common clown fish
1 damselfish (choice of a couple of types - cheaper ones).

The shop says that this tank could support up to 15 fish but this seems very high to me and would also depend on the size of fish, etc.

I would plan to add another 15lb+ of base rock to this as I'm not a huge fan of tanks with minimalist aquascaping. I also think I'd want a hang-on skimmer and two small powerbeads, but all the test kits, etc. I'd also want to buy a cheap second-hand 10gal tank with heater and filter for a quarantine tank.

My current plan would be to buy this package in the next few weeks and cycle the tank, etc until ready for fish. Then arrange with the shop to pick up the various fish one at a time.

I'd like to eventually have the following

2 clownfish (hoping the shop will do a deal to replace the damsel)
1 royal gamma (or a blackcap basslet)
Potters Angel (not sure about this as I've read this tank is borderline)
Starry blenny (after the tank is well established)
Blue Chromis (I'd love 3 but I know that is too many in such a small tank)
Fire Shrimp
Cleaner Shrimp
Hermit crabs

Eventually, I'd like to have corals as well but I know this is well down the road as I'd have to upgrade lights, etc.

One big question that I have is placement of the tank in the house. I have a great spot that I'd love a tank in just inside the door to my living room (replacing the shelves in picture). This room is also the warmest in the house as it gets the most light. However, I've read that having the tank too close to a window causes lots of algae problems. This room is also the brightest in my house and gets a lot of sunlight. However, the location would mean that I'd see the tank much more and hopefully enjoy it more. The other catch would mean that this tank would have people passing it more often. My other location is in the kitchen. This room is probably the coldest in the house and I don't spend much time there (live alone so often eat watching television, etc).

Any comments and answers would be welcome.

Thanks in advance.

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Old 11-16-2014, 11:54 AM   #2
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Everything sounds pretty good. Make sure you have 1 lbs per gallon when it comes to rock. To save money, try getting macro or base rock. And for the Potter's angel, skip it entirely. They are difficult to care for. You could try a coral beauty or a flame angel in a tank that size. I have a coral beauty in my 55 reef tank that is as happy as a clam...as long as I don't try to keep a clam that it will harass to death.
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