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Old 08-25-2008, 11:46 AM   #1
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Question newbie questions

Hi, everyone. I'm new to this forum because I inherited a fully cycled 26 gallon FOWLR tank a week ago and it's already been a roller coaster of a ride (see sick forum)! I have a few of questions and I think they're mostly equipment related so I'm posting here.

I'll start with my most embarrasing question. How can I tell if my one live rock is actually alive?

Secondly, the tank is set up with a filter, a protein skimmer, and an airstone. Don't I need a power head? If I add more live rock, do I still need the filter?

Lastly, if I wanted to invest in a larger tank (budget constraints would only allow for a 46 G), how would I go about converting? I've searched this forum and can't find any advice. Can I simply mix 20G of new water and move everything from the old tank into the new tank?

Thanks in advance!

Edited: I thought of one more question. My 26 gallon tank has a lyretail wrasse and an eel. Aren't they totally wrong for this tank size? Would a fish store take them back? Can you ever get store credit for that? Thanks!

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Old 08-25-2008, 02:34 PM   #2
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If it's been in the tank for a month or more, it's live. LR refers to the rock housing beneficial bacteria. They attache to the surface of the rock. As rock used in our tanks is very porous there is a lot of surface area for the bacteria to colonize.

A power head is generally a good idea. The general rule is to have 10x -20x tank volume in water flow through the tank each hour. So a 26 gallon tank should have 260 gph or more of flow from all sources. LR is an obstruction to flow so more flow would be needed.

Another general rule is to have 1Ĺ - 2 pounds of LR per gallon of tank capacity to act as your biological filter. That with a good protein skimmer negates the need for a cannister or other mechanical filter.

There a quite a few threads on tank moves. Basically you need to set up the new tank. Get your substrate down (don't re-use more than a few pounds of sand from the old tank), add more base rock, then move everything over. That's a pretty simplified version.

Check with your LFS to see if they will offer you any credit for livestock you may want to return. Each store sets their own policy.

Good luck.
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Old 08-25-2008, 02:57 PM   #3
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Thank you! I'm still confused about the move. I've tried searching for posts since I'm sure people move between different size tanks all the time. I searched for tank "upgrade" "convert" and now based on your post "tank move" and I still haven't found one that shows step by step how to do this. Any other suggestions? Out of curiosity, why not use more than a couple pounds of my existing sand?
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Old 08-25-2008, 03:23 PM   #4
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for the move all you need to do is set up your new tank with the new substrate and put in the base rock( 1.5-2pounds per gallon) and then put in your live rock from your previous tank, by mixing some of your sand and adding your already cured rock you lose none of the beneficail bacteria and you want really need to cycle your tank. im not to sure about using all of your old substrate may contain to many grime it is probably better to start fresh. add your old water and then add in the rest of the water just as if it were a PWC, and then watch your params. not sure if i forgot anything but some will jump in if i did
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