Sump question

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Edmonton Eskimo

Aquarium Advice FINatic
Aug 14, 2004
I am thinking of starting a sump for my 5o gal reef tank. What is good to put in a sump? I have been reading up on mangroves and various macro algaes. I would like to have it as natural as possible. Do I have to have lighting if I want to grow plants in it? I was thinking of using filter media on one side and a dsb, mangroves and caulerpa on the other side. Any expert advice would be excellent :D
What you are describing is a Refugium.
Light is required for macro algae growth.
Mangroves can be difficult and require a lot of room.

You want a sand or rubble bottom for copepods, amphipods, baby stars, worms, etc. to thrive in.
Some people light their refugiums on a reverse schedule as thier main tank to minimize pH swings.

Do a search of this forum on"refugium" to get more detailed information on the subject.
Yes, I do want a refugium but I also want to incorporate it in a sump. How much room would the mangroves need? I was thinking of building my own sump. What would be good dimensions? I couldn't go longer than 28"
How tall can you go. Remember, Mangroves are trees. If you only want the Mangroves to function like an "algae scrubber" to reduce nitrate, there are easier/cheaper ways to do it.
There are hundreds of sump designs esp. DIY ones. A seaarch of the forum and/or net might help.
Include these criterea:
Provide low flow across the refugium portion. Include baffles before the return pump to eliminate microbubbles. Make the sump portion large enough to hold a heater and skimmer. Include a float switch for an auto top off scheme (this is the main advantage of a sump IMO). Use an external pump if possible to reduce heating the water from the pump motor.
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