First timer here, looking for suggestions.

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself' started by Veilside0Three, Oct 28, 2008.

  1. Veilside0Three

    Veilside0Three

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    Hey everyone. I'm pretty new to the hobby. I was at Petco with the girlfriend getting her dog some food, when I stumbled upon the saltwater fish. I was immediately hooked, and within a week I had a tank. Its now been about two months.

    I'll start with tank specs. Its an acrylic 90gallon 60x18x18. It does have scuffs and a few minor scratches which I would love to know how/if it is possible to take care of them.

    Hardware(so far):
    -Marineland C-360 Canister Filter
    -Submergible heater meant for 75g tank, buying another soon.
    -Two 48" Light bars, holding 40W flourescent bulbs(1 in each) Actinic(sp?) and daylight(20,000k) Both Coralife.
    -About 25lbs of live rock so far, I buy peice by peice since the LFS here is $8/lb. :(
    -90lbs of Black live sand(goes well with black background and black stand)

    Livestock(so far):
    -Volitan Lionfish(small/medium sized)
    -Snowflake eel(small)
    -Yellow Headed Goby
    -Scooter Blenny(my favorite)
    -Firefish Goby
    -Coral Banded Shrimp(best friends w/ Yellow Headed Goby, Normal?)
    -Sally Lightfoot Crab
    -Two Turbo Snails
    -Electric Blue Damsel(need him out, he bugs everyone, suggestions?)
    -Three Stripe Damsel(same as blue)
    -5 various hermit crabs(zebra, blue, red)
    -One random anenome that came with a peice of tonga rock

    Question for the advanced hobbyists.... Where do you go from here? What should my next steps be? The water is pretty clear, fish all seem to be happy(as long as the damsels arent bullying them), and they all eat great.
     
    Veilside0Three, Oct 28, 2008
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  2. Veilside0Three

    dustin_P74

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    first thing you do is stop buying livestock from petco. and the next step is to get rid of the anemone and all but one or two of the fish. then after that buy base rock, its about 1-2 dollars a pound and will eventually become live rock. you want about 1-2lbs of rock per gallon of water. are you running a sump? a protein skimmer? if not to the skimmer question i highly suggest you get one, its about as important as lights or water are. oh and one more thing do you plan on doing corals also or just fish only tank?
     
    Last edited: Oct 28, 2008
    dustin_P74, Oct 28, 2008
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  3. Veilside0Three

    Veilside0Three

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    No no no, I don't buy any livestock from petco. Too many dead fish, and half of them show signs of disease. I buy from my LFS, the prices are better and they get monthly shipments. Why should I get rid of all of my fish? I did checks daily until i saw all of the spikes, then waited two more weeks before anything over $5 went in.

    I don't like the idea of shipping rock, and noone around has base rock, so thats kinda out of the question. I do plan on getting a skimmer, any suggestions?

    Also, no corals. Just fish w/ live rock. Perhaps a few anenome to color things up.
     
    Veilside0Three, Oct 28, 2008
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  4. Veilside0Three

    dustin_P74

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    ok good you are smart about buying livestock. you should get rid of the fish because your tank has only been set up for two months and you already are overstocked. you only want to add one fish every three weeks. also the gobies need an established tank since they eat the fauna out of the sand bed and once thats gone they will starve. for base rock look here
     
    dustin_P74, Oct 28, 2008
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  5. Veilside0Three

    Veilside0Three

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    How long does it take to start the sand? I'm not too worried about them starving. They love the brine/mysis shrimp that i drop in twice a day for now at least.. The firefish never scavenges, but I do occasionally see the yellow head sifting. The scooter also picks at the sand, but will also eat the brine. What sort of skimmer would you suggest? Thats my main worry right now, I do not want to get nasty water.
     
    Veilside0Three, Oct 28, 2008
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  6. Veilside0Three

    dustin_P74

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    it should start to seed in a month or so. also they will eat brine and mysis but its not enough to sustain them long term. also i would only feed brine occasionally as it has no real nutritional value and is more junk food to them. also with skimmers it is definatly a you get what you pay for situation and i would get a octopus skimmer
     
    dustin_P74, Oct 28, 2008
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  7. Veilside0Three

    Veilside0Three

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    Are there any skimmers that are stand alone? I really dont want anything hanging off of my tank, nor do I have a sump. The octopus skimmers look great and have amazing prices, but so far i have only seem in sump, and hanging.
     
    Veilside0Three, Oct 29, 2008
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  8. Veilside0Three

    dustin_P74

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    i think are your only two options, you can always get a hob (hand on back) overflow and send it to a sump
     
    dustin_P74, Oct 29, 2008
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  9. Veilside0Three

    yote Ceritfied Mantis Hunter Moderator

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    Welcome to the reef.
    If your parameters are in check with the bio-load you already have,then your fish will be ok.But since you already said the DAMNsels are bullying the other fish,you can lessen the load by getting rid of the DAMNsels.You have basically 3 options for that:
    #1-Fishing line and a small shrimp looking wet fly like is used for trout fishing.
    #2-Drain the tank and leave them flopping on the sand.
    or my favorite
    #3-High explosives.
    Damsels are a pain to catch in an empty tank,let alone a tank with live rock.
    You do need a good quality skimmer and you have 2 options for that,you can either use a HOB skimmer or set yourself up a sump.(which you'll end up doing any way)
    What are your plans for the tank?Since thats what will effect your set up later down the road.
    Also make sure you break the canister filter down at least once a week and give it a good cleaning.That way it wont shoot your nitrates through the roof.
     
    yote, Oct 29, 2008
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  10. Veilside0Three

    reeffreak

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    Welcome to the site!

    Be careful of the lionfish,they do eat smaller fish.Try to ID or take a pic of the anemone on the live rock.If it is an aiptasia or majano anemone,you will want to kill it right away before they get out of hand.
     
    reeffreak, Oct 29, 2008
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  11. Veilside0Three

    Bifferwine I am a girl

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    Hi and welcome!

    I would highly highly highly recommend removing the damsels. They are just so aggressive and will make life miserable for your other animals.

    Also, your lighting is not appropriate for corals or anemones, especially. Anemones require more lighting than most corals, but since your anemone came as a hitch hiker, it's a good possibility that it's a harmful anemone. Google "aiptasia" and "majano", is it one of those?? If not, can you post a pic of your anemone? We can ID it for you.

    I know you said you weren't really interested in corals, but you won't be able to keep anemones either with those lights.

    I would not plan on adding any more fish. You are pretty maxed out as far as the bioload goes, and you added those fish really fast (it's recommended to add one fish every 3 weeks, and not any faster than that in a new tank).

    What are your water parameters checking out at? If they are fine and your fish are eating and acting normal, that's great, but I just wouldn't add any more at this point.

    You might want to look into getting a protein skimmer instead of your filter down the road. Filters like the one you have tend to lead to nitrate problems. That's not such a big deal in a fish only tank, but nitrates are fatal to inverts like your crabs, snails and shrimp. Live rock plus a protein skimmer is the best filtration system you can have.
     
    Bifferwine, Oct 29, 2008
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  12. Veilside0Three

    Veilside0Three

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    My main plans for the tank a FOWLR. There are a few main fish that I really want. One was the lionfish, and I possible I would love to get a radiata lion as well. I want a blue spotted ray. Plus I have the eel. Now I understand that the lions eat fish small enough to fit in it's mouth, but will it end up eating the firefish and scooter blenny? Or the coral shrimp?
     
    Veilside0Three, Oct 29, 2008
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  13. Veilside0Three

    dustin_P74

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    the shrimp i doubt will get eatin. but the bleenies are a possibility and firefish are another possibility. go ahead and forget the ray, 98% of home aquariums arent suited for a ray. two lions in one tank i wouldnt attempt.
     
    dustin_P74, Oct 29, 2008
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  14. Veilside0Three

    Veilside0Three

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    I googled the two anenomes, it definately looks like aiptasia.
     
    Veilside0Three, Oct 29, 2008
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  15. Veilside0Three

    dustin_P74

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    there are a couple solutions to that, you can get a peppermint shrimp from florida, you can inject them with joes juice, you can cover them with a thick kalk paste, or you can inject with liquid calcium
     
    dustin_P74, Oct 29, 2008
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  16. Veilside0Three

    Veilside0Three

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    Hmm I like the idea of the pepperment shrimp. But how well will it get along with the coral banded shrimp?
     
    Veilside0Three, Oct 29, 2008
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  17. Veilside0Three

    dustin_P74

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    they should get along fine, but make sure it is from Florida since those are they only species of peppermint that eat aiptasia
     
    dustin_P74, Oct 29, 2008
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  18. Veilside0Three

    daugherty part time reefer

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    the lion you have may eat your shrimp and it may leave it alone
     
    daugherty, Oct 29, 2008
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  19. Veilside0Three

    yote Ceritfied Mantis Hunter Moderator

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    If you go the pepperment route,make sure you add them to the tank after the lights have been off for an hour or so.That way they can get to the rock hopefully before the lionfish spots them.50/50 on weather or not the coral banded will kill them.
     
    yote, Oct 30, 2008
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  20. Veilside0Three

    Bifferwine I am a girl

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    Coral banded shrimp are pretty aggressive, and I'd say the chances are pretty good that it would kill the peppermints. You may want to try another method of controlling them instead, like smothering them with kalk paste or salt paste.

    As for a ray, they really need huge tanks with very little rock (lots of open sand bed space). This makes it difficult to keep other fish because the less rock you have, the less filtration you have.

    The blenny, and most definitely the firefish, could easily be eaten by a lionfish.
     
    Bifferwine, Oct 30, 2008
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