How to add live rock

Discussion in 'Reef Fishes' started by jb61264, Jan 22, 2008.

  1. jb61264

    jb61264

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    Aside from the obvious action of lifting the rock up and placing it in the tank and removing my arm....was wondering if I need to go through any sort of "rinsing" process when I get my live rock tomorrow...I've read where I should maybe "prepare" the live rock before adding to my tank?
    jb61264, Jan 22, 2008
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  2. jb61264

    Bifferwine I am a girl Moderator

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    Live rock should be cured before you add it to a tank that already has animals in it. If you are starting your tank brand new and don't have any fish or corals yet, you can cure the rock in the tank. Curing live rock usually starts a cycle.
    Bifferwine, Jan 22, 2008
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  3. jb61264

    Doc I don't work for anybody

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    you will know it is not cured if it stinks like crazy - eggs. No smell, means already cured rock

    -Doc
    Doc, Jan 22, 2008
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  4. jb61264

    reeffreak

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    I rinse live rock in fresh saltwater and scrub any debris and decaying matter from it before adding it to the display.
    reeffreak, Jan 22, 2008
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  5. jb61264

    yote Ceritfied Mantis Hunter Moderator

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    You'll with in a day of putting it in your tank if its cured or not.
    Un-cured rock will small like a sewage plant has moved next door.
    yote, Jan 22, 2008
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  6. jb61264

    fishbait I found Nemo

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    yeah, what reef said. that's what I normally do.
    fishbait, Jan 22, 2008
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  7. jb61264

    jb61264

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    Well, my first batch of live rock came...the LFS guy said that it was cured so it shouldn't stink things up too badly :)

    I had some of the same saltwater that I put into the tank left over in my container and filled up a bucket halfway...gently rinsed each piece before I placed in my tank...what fun :^:

    [​IMG]
    jb61264, Jan 23, 2008
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  8. jb61264

    fishbait I found Nemo

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    congrats on the rock. now get to aquascaping! :mrgreen:
    fishbait, Jan 23, 2008
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  9. jb61264

    jb61264

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    yes...although I probably wont' do "too" much with this rock as I intend it to be more of the "foundation" that the "really nice" pieces of rock that I order in a few weeks (after cycle)...but yes, I definately want to get them in there for the best fit with my circulation.
    jb61264, Jan 23, 2008
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  10. jb61264

    Bifferwine I am a girl Moderator

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    Keep in mind, that if you add more live rocks in a few weeks, chances are that will start another cycle. It may not be a big cycle, but adding live rock usually will kick your ammonia and nitrites up a notch.
    Bifferwine, Jan 23, 2008
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  11. jb61264

    Piggy

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    Post new pic when it clears up a bit so we can see the rock better. Your moving along nicely. keep up the good work.
    Piggy, Jan 23, 2008
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  12. jb61264

    Doc I don't work for anybody

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    I agree with Biff, add all your rock ASAP to avoid continuing your cycle.

    -Doc
    Doc, Jan 23, 2008
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  13. jb61264

    Rcpilot

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    It's okay as long as you don't start buying corals and fish. Add the rock and wait for the cycle to rise and fall. No big deal. It just takes longer if you add the rock in 3 or 4 phases over 2 or 3 months. Not many people can watch a tank full of rock cure for 3 months before adding a few fish. :mrgreen: Thats why everyone is telling you to add it all at once. Get it over and done with and the cycle should clear up in as little as a week or as long as a month.

    I bought some of my live rock from a local reefer. It had been in his tank for years, so it was covered in coraline and loaded with pods and other life. (22lbs) Didn't cause a spike when I added it to the tank. Then I bought dry rock from a local store and that had dead organics on it. (17lbs) I rinsed and scrubbed until I thought I had all of it off. But it started to rot and get slimy after about 3 days in the tank. Massive spike. Rotting organics in the water. Had to do a 50% water change. Had to pull it out and cure it in a rubbermaid tub for about 6 weeks. Then I put it back in the tank. No spike. A couple months later, I bought more rock (another 22lbs) from a LFS and it was supposed to be cured. It was "partially cured" didn't smell awful, but still smelled like a wet dog. I put it in the tank and didn't see a spike. I can only attribute that to the DSB, cheato and already cured rock in the tank. It had to have absorbed any nitrates and ammonia, because I couldn't register anything on a test kit, even though the new rocks made my tank stink for a month.

    I think it may be okay to add small portions of rock over time. Maybe 5 pounds here and there. Give it a month or 6 weeks and then add 3 or 4 pounds again. Wait another 6 weeks. But once you put animals in the tank--I don't believe you should try to add large quantities of rock anymore. If it's not completely cured, it'll cause a spike and mini-cycle. It can be rough on certain corals and inverts to endure repeated spikes and cycles. Kinda like you getting a bad case of the flu once a month for 6 months in a row. By the end of it all--you'll be so worn out, you may not live.
    Rcpilot, Jan 23, 2008
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  14. jb61264

    jb61264

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    Well...here I sit still waiting for my tank to cycle...:frustrat:...it will be three weeks since I added live rock this next Tuesday and I will begin to become seriously depressed if my nitrites and nitrates have not come down by then. In fact, I am officially boycottting doing any tests until Monday morning before I go to work because every day I test and every day it is still high and it totally bums me out...SO...no tests until Monday :)

    Looking at it, I am amazed at how crystal clear it is...I just wish all those damn bacterias were working a little harder and faster.

    As I've mentioned, I will be adding 25lbs of TBSW live rock and 5lbs of TBSW live sand as soon as my tank cycles...I'm thinking of just going ahead and adding a few snails at the same time as adding the next batch of live rock...does anybody think this will present too much stress for any hitchhikers on the rock/sand and the snals themselves?
    jb61264, Feb 9, 2008
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  15. jb61264

    Bifferwine I am a girl Moderator

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    I wouldn't add any snails until the cycle is complete. Ammonia, nitrites or high nitrates (over 20) will likely kill them.
    Bifferwine, Feb 9, 2008
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