A few questions about reef aquariums

Discussion in 'New to Reefing' started by Bunnylicked, Jul 7, 2011.

  1. Bunnylicked

    Bunnylicked Still learning!

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    I'm a little confused about a few things regarding filtration, fish and lighting. Sorry if these are all newbie questions!

    First, I've seen recommendations for a variety of different filters - wet/dry filters, sumps, protein skimmers, bio-wheels and balls, etc...:-? I'm confused about what I need for, say, a 50 gallon reef. What's really the best type?

    Second, I like the idea of live rock, but I don't like the prices. I've read that you can "seed" lace rock or dry rock with a few pounds of live rock. Is this a good option? Also, would I have to wait any extra time for it to be "seeded" before I added livestock to the tank?

    Third, do I really need metal halide lighting to keep LPS corals? I know that I want both softies and LPS in my reef, but I've read that all hard corals need VHO lighting. Is this true? If not, what other types of lighting should I consider?

    Fourth, is it OK to keep more than two clownfish in the same aquarium? I can't seem to find a straight answer about whether or not they'll fight. Also, will I be dealing with babies if I only keep two?

    Thanks for your help! :)
     
    Bunnylicked, Jul 7, 2011
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  2. Bunnylicked

    Wes888

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    You can only have 2 clownfish in the same tank, or they'll fight to the death and ended up with just 2. Condition has to be perfect for them to spawn. I don't think you need to worry about babies just yet.
     
    Wes888, Jul 7, 2011
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  3. Bunnylicked

    little_fish Moderator

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    1. The best filtration you can have for you tank is plenty of live rock, and then either a sump with a large refuigum (a place for macro algae to grow and micro fauna to live and reproduce to become free food for the tank, ie pods) and a protein skimmer (these also come as HOB) or an algae scubber (you have to build this and is basically a fuge on crack :) ) We dont suggest any of those other form of filtration because they can cause more problems than they solve because without frequent maintaince (sp?) they will leave nitrates back into your water column.

    2. You can buy dry base rock and see it with just a piece of live rock and it will all turn to live over time. I bought my dry rock from these guys, and many other on here: Marco Rocks The finest aquarium rock available
    They have great prices, super nice customer service and the rock itself is great. Exactly the type of rocks you want in your reef.

    You will have to cycle your tank no matter what, so its not going to take any longer to become live than otherwise. In 6 weeks you wont be able to tell what is the live and what was dry base rock.

    3. No, i suggest getting some t5 lighting, especially for a tank that size. These are great lights and will let you keep anything you want, including all corals and clams.
    Aquarium Lighting for Reef Systems: Current Nova Extreme Pro Saltwater T-5 Fixtures
    Invest in good lighting!

    4. Some people have been luck enough to keep more than 2 clowns, but that is rare, rare exception not the rule. As said before they will most likely fight till there is only 2 left. It also takes years for clowns to pair up and lay eggs, so dont worry about babies.

    Also, as a local, check out this forum: MASC Forums

    You can buy used equipment on there, find good livestock deals, live rock, corals, etc. Also dont forget to check out craigslist for other good deal, but do be a smart buyer!
     
    little_fish, Jul 7, 2011
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  4. Bunnylicked

    Bunnylicked Still learning!

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    Thanks for your help! Wasn't expecting such a great response so quickly.

    Do you have any recommendations for good sumps?

    Thanks for the link to that forum! I've been looking around on there for a few minutes now, and it looks like a great forum.

    I've been looking around on Craigslist and have already found some great deals. I found a full 75 gallon reef setup - with a custom stand, a sump with a skimmer, HO lighting, powerheads, 100lbs of live rock, and even a few fish - for just under $450.
     
    Bunnylicked, Jul 7, 2011
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  5. Bunnylicked

    Cathic Fish Wrangler

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    Sounds like a good deal, be sure to inspect the setup and get specifics.
     
    Cathic, Jul 7, 2011
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  6. Bunnylicked

    little_fish Moderator

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    That sounds like a good deal, but be sure you check it out before you commit. Often times those all in one add have really crappy equipment, or their tanks have other horrendous issues - which is why they are getting out of the hobby.

    But get as large as sump as you can fit. You also dont need another tank, a plastic tub works just as well.
     
    little_fish, Jul 7, 2011
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  7. Bunnylicked

    Cathic Fish Wrangler

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    Hah i ninjad you Hannah!
     
    Cathic, Jul 7, 2011
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  8. Bunnylicked

    little_fish Moderator

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    speedy finger you have ;)
     
    little_fish, Jul 8, 2011
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  9. Bunnylicked

    Bunnylicked Still learning!

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    I hate when I do that! It looks silly to have a one-sentence post just above a long, well thought out post that says the same thing. :)

    Here's the link to it, if any of you want to look: 75 gallon saltwater tank, live rock, complete setup

    I'm not sure if I'll offer to look at it yet. I want to, but I don't want to feel like I'm rushing into things.
     
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2011
    Bunnylicked, Jul 8, 2011
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  10. Bunnylicked

    little_fish Moderator

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    I can tell you that you are going to need better lights if you want to keep corals. Also that skimmer sounds really odd, and im going to bet its not a great skimmer either.

    I also personally would just return the fish if you do end up getting that setup. For starters you wont have to worry about your tank mini-cycling when/if you try and move it. Plus than you can get fish that you like. Also that damsel is one of the evilest fish you can buy and will likely prevent you from adding any other fish because they are so aggressive.
     
    little_fish, Jul 8, 2011
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  11. Bunnylicked

    ErinCahir Sausage Wrangler

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    :ahem:
    I'm selling my four-foot 150, lights and skimmer if you're interested.
    Just sayin'.

    Also, I kept three clowns in my tank... two maroons and an oscillaris, but I think I was VERY lucky.
     
    ErinCahir, Jul 8, 2011
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  12. Bunnylicked

    little_fish Moderator

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    having seen her system, i can say for sure that is a good setup, everything is of quality.
     
    little_fish, Jul 8, 2011
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  13. Bunnylicked

    ErinCahir Sausage Wrangler

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    Bam! :D
     
    ErinCahir, Jul 8, 2011
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  14. Bunnylicked

    Bunnylicked Still learning!

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    Yikes - 150 gallon? I'd love to buy it, but I don't think I could afford equipment and corals for a tank that large. Sorry!
     
    Bunnylicked, Jul 9, 2011
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  15. Bunnylicked

    Sir Alex Dragon the eel (below)

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    You're leaving the hobby?

    Wait 4', I thought you had a trigger in there??? :shock::shock::shock:


    And Bunny, it's going to be really hard to find light that are 52" long. You'd have to do DIY lighting. I suggest just getting a tank and stand, then buy every thing else seperately so you can get exactly what you want. :D
     
    Sir Alex, Jul 9, 2011
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  16. Bunnylicked

    ErinCahir Sausage Wrangler

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    I did have a trigger in there. And he was as happy and healthy as could be. Had I stuck around I would have rehomed him earlier.

    And no, I'm not leaving the hobby. But circumstances beyond my control forced my hand.
     
    ErinCahir, Jul 9, 2011
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  17. Bunnylicked

    RyanG ^*Eternal Dumbass*^

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    In all honesty the price in equipment for a 75 vs a 4' 150 isn't going to be much different if at all.
     
    RyanG, Jul 9, 2011
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  18. Bunnylicked

    Sir Alex Dragon the eel (below)

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    So your downgrading?
     
    Sir Alex, Jul 9, 2011
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  19. Bunnylicked

    ErinCahir Sausage Wrangler

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    I have no tank right now. When circumstances allow I'll be getting another one.
     
    ErinCahir, Jul 10, 2011
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  20. Bunnylicked

    lilyicu FOWLR

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    I seeded my tank with Texas holey rock. I got some great shelf pieces for not too much $$. Now they are covered with bubble anemones and pulsing xenia. Just a thought for you. Welcome to the hobby.
     
    lilyicu, Jul 10, 2011
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