Cycling a tank, adding fish and corals

Discussion in 'New to Reefing' started by Jmck, May 13, 2010.

  1. Jmck

    LoveJC03 Reef Enthusiast

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    What if we want to add corals or anything similar, do we add them at the same time we add our rock... or how does that work? Do they have to come in before fish?
     
    LoveJC03, Aug 17, 2011
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  2. Jmck

    LoveJC03 Reef Enthusiast

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    Say.. we start with a 30 gallon & we have everything in our tank. What if we want to upgrade to a 55.. could we just transfer everything in the old tank to the new one?
     
    LoveJC03, Aug 17, 2011
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  3. Jmck

    ErinCahir Sausage Wrangler

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    You do not need to add corals at the same time as your rock. Heck, you don't even have to add all your rock at once.

    If you wanted to upgrade to a 55 (which IMO, if you're going to upgrade to a 55 you should just get a 75) you absolutely could just move all your stuff over.
     
    ErinCahir, Aug 17, 2011
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  4. Jmck

    LoveJC03 Reef Enthusiast

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    Thank you. So we can add all of our rock and cycle our tank.. then later if we want corals we can add them? Or we can add them together?

    We can't decide! Lol.. we're going to the fish store this weekend, then maybe we'll know what size we wanna stick with. We are beginners... and we want easy!
     
    LoveJC03, Aug 17, 2011
    #44
  5. Jmck

    ErinCahir Sausage Wrangler

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    Yeah, you don't want to add corals before you cycle your tank.

    And please, please don't take your advice from the LFS.. they're just trying to make a buck. Also, I hope you know you shouldn't cycle with a fish.
     
    ErinCahir, Aug 17, 2011
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  6. Jmck

    LoveJC03 Reef Enthusiast

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    Oh okay. So, just add live rock & sand.. then fish after cycled.. and wait a little bit for corals.

    Whose LFS? and thanks
     
    LoveJC03, Aug 17, 2011
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  7. Jmck

    ErinCahir Sausage Wrangler

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    Just be wary of the advice YOUR LFS will give you.
     
    ErinCahir, Aug 17, 2011
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  8. Jmck

    Zissou What about my dynamite? VIP Member

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    I wouldn't say the hobby is hard, but I wouldn't say it's easy either. If it's easy now, it'll be much harder later, when you have algae and bacteria outbreaks to deal with. Then you'll wish you did it 'right' the first time.

    As Erin already said, if you want to go to a 55, might as well go with a 75. Chances are, you'll see how little room there is with your 30, and will desire more front to back space. A 55 is still only 12" wide, a 75 is 18". And she's also right that you don't want to cycle with fish, and don't trust your LFS. Your LFS might be a good one, but most of us have had really bad experiences with them. They want to sell you fish and corals as soon as possible for money. They won't care if they die in your tank, because they know you'll just come back to replace them.

    Tank, water, heater, powerheads, sand, rock. A cycle can take two weeks to a month, depending on your live rock. If it's cured live rock from an LFS, then it shouldn't take very long. Use test kits.

    After the cycle, do a 10-20% water change, and then you can add your first fish. I know it's hard, but don't worry about what you're going to put in it yet, unless those things happen to be an anemone or other sensitive corals. Most people recommend not getting an anemone for at least a year; by this time you'll know whether the hobby is really for you or not, and how stable your tank is. Anemones are kind of the unicorn in a lot of reefs, you need the best water quality and lighting available for them. If you want to an anemone later, then you'll have to take their needs into consideration now, by using the best water available from the get go. Lighting you can add when you get your anemone, but water needs to be perfect. I know I keep pushing it, but a RODI is the best decision you can make early on. It's as easy as hooking it up to a kitchen sink faucet. There are more permanent solutions, but it doesn't have to be complicated. Mine is hooked up the garden hose outside, for example, and I just let the waste water wash down the driveway. The good water goes into a brute trash can for storage. I'm going to hook it up to my washroom when winter gets here.

    Take it slow, don't rush it. If you do, your beautiful vision of the ocean will turn into an algae farm. The more time you take setting up, the less chances there are you'll throw it on craigslist a year from now out of frustration.
     
    Last edited: Aug 19, 2011
    Zissou, Aug 19, 2011
    #48
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  9. Jmck

    Mr.Diggler Smitten with Sookie

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    +1 and good post, Zissou.
     
    Mr.Diggler, Aug 19, 2011
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  10. Jmck

    LoveJC03 Reef Enthusiast

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    What test kit should we get?

    API Reef Master Test Kit - (tests for: calcium, carbonate hardness, phosphate and nitrate levels)

    API Saltwater Master Test Kit - (tests for: high range pH, ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate)
     
    LoveJC03, Aug 20, 2011
    #50
  11. Jmck

    CNugg

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    Thanks! Helped alot for set up.
     
    CNugg, Oct 17, 2011
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  12. Jmck

    JustinsReefTank

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    Why didn't you mention the shrimp method in your how to cycle?? that way no one sacrifices a fish??
     
    JustinsReefTank, Nov 17, 2011
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  13. Jmck

    Jmck

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    Because I mentioned that you use live rock to cycle your tank. If you buy live rock and leave it out for even 5 minutes, there is die off in the tank. So this going into your tank will create the nitrate spike. the shrimp method is another excellent way of doing it however :)

    I do not condone the use of live fish!
     
    Jmck, Nov 21, 2011
    #53
  14. Jmck

    NanoReefer

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    but i would try to create the least amount of liverock die off so you have all those cope pods and other critters roam
     
    NanoReefer, Nov 21, 2011
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  15. Jmck

    JustinsReefTank

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    Yeah I'm not for the fish method either. I was just putting it out there.. I'm using dry rock so therefore I'm going with the shrimp method.
     
    JustinsReefTank, Nov 21, 2011
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  16. Jmck

    AquaticDigest

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    AquaticDigest, Jan 3, 2012
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  17. Jmck

    Nate0712

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    Ok so I run my lights almost 24 hours a day but about half of that I only have 2 lunar led lights lit does this count
     
    Nate0712, Feb 8, 2012
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  18. Jmck

    Bifferwine I am a girl

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    Lunar lights don't count. You should be running bright lights (daylights) for 8 to 12 hours a day.
     
    Bifferwine, Feb 8, 2012
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  19. Jmck

    Mike_630l

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    I have started cycling my tank, and I am in day 6. The matter which surprises me is that my tests are 0 with nitrates being around 5. I never encountered a spike, nor high levels (first test was performed on day 3). Unless the spike is still coming? I am looking to put about 5 inverts in the tank next Friday.
     
    Mike_630l, Feb 23, 2012
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  20. Jmck

    ErinCahir Sausage Wrangler

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    What method are you using? How much live rock do you have? Was it out of the water for an extended period of time?
     
    ErinCahir, Feb 23, 2012
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