hello, here to learn

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself' started by sicklids, Jun 13, 2008.

  1. sicklids

    sicklids salt water dummy

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    well, my name is Josh and i am a freshwater guy. i am currently thinking of setting up a saltwater aquarium, but not so much reef and coral. i need to know alot of stuff, cause i have no idea what im getting into!!

    here are my questions:

    1. i currently have play sand for substrate, will this be ok?

    2. i would like some live rock, do i need special lighting for this like i would with coral? and if i have one piece of live rock, will the "life" on it spread to other rocks on its own? if so, what type of rock should i put with it?

    3. currently what has got me into the saltwater thing is i have got given a G. Tile eel from the lfs, what can i put with him? he is in a 55 gallon tank.

    4. can i use my fluval 304 canister filter in a salty?
     
    sicklids, Jun 13, 2008
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  2. sicklids

    lightcs4 Loving to learn

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    Welcome Josh. Saltwater is, in my opinion, quite a bit different than freshwater. Just do plenty of research and take your time.

    Good to have you on Living Reefs.
     
    lightcs4, Jun 14, 2008
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  3. sicklids

    RyanG ^*Eternal Dumbass*^

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    Welcome to the Reef!

    1. Playsand will work but you will have more cyano bacteria problems if it is silica based sand instead of argonite or calcium carbonate based sand. The best way to tell if it is suitable is to put white vinegar on some dry sand, if it fizzes then its what you want.

    2. You really dont need any special lighting for FOWLR if you buy base rock(dry dead live rock) you could use a few pieces of live rock to "seed" it with. Again use the vinegar test for suitability. I would get some base rock IMO.

    3. No experience with eels

    4. You can use the canister with saltwater if you havent treated you freshwater with copper. Although it wont be used for the same purpose in a marine system. In a freshwater system it is used as a mechanical biological and chemical filtration. You will only be running it as a chemical filter in a FOWLR. You should look into a protein skimmer for the mechanical filtration and 1-2lbs of live rock will provide a great biological filter. You can skimp a little on the rock if you are going to only do fish. But IMO why limit yourself to fish if you decide to go with corals in the future.

    If you seriously want to learn the right way to do things do two things: Read as much of the Articles section as you can and go buy The Conscientous Marine Aquarist by Robert Fenner, its considered by many to be the saltwater keepers bible.
     
    RyanG, Jun 14, 2008
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  4. sicklids

    Bifferwine I am a girl

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    Hi and welcome.

    Play sand could lead to more diatom problems, not cyano as Ryan said... (sorry Ryan). Diatoms are a type of algae too, but some people use play sand with no problem. I personally would not use it. I would stick to aragonite sand that you buy at a pet or fish store.

    No special lighting needed for FOWLR tanks (fish only with live rock).

    Eels will usually eat anything they can fit into their mouths. Since you want fish only, larger fish will work well. A lot of people keep eels with other predators -- trigger fish, lion fish, puffers, wrasses, etc. Keep in mind you need to take special precautions with your tank since eels are jumpers.

    You can use your canister filter, but it's not the best thing you could use. Canister filters lead to nitrate problems down the road. That's not so important in fish only tanks because fish can tolerate high nitrates, but high nitrates = algae galore. Your best bet is to buy a protein skimmer.
     
    Bifferwine, Jun 14, 2008
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  5. sicklids

    Doc I don't work for anybody

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    welcome to the forum. Glad you are thinking about taking the plunge into saltwater. It seems as if you have received good answers to your questions. I would like to put emphasis on adding at least 1 lb of live rock per gallon in your tank. Live rock is the best biological filtration. You can use lace rock from a pet store and place a few pieces of live rock into your tank as a cheaper alternative to paying a premium price for all live rock. I wonder, since you mentioned having an eel, how time sensitive you are in wanting to set up a tank?

    Eels are a lot of fun, but tend to spend much of the day hiding. There are a few good eels for the aquarium, the largest being the zebra moray eel, which will fit nicely in your 55 gallon and does not really present a danger to other tankmates. White-eyed morays and ribbon eels are also good with other fish in the tank, but.... all eels are masters at escape. If you decide to keep them, make sure you have a cover over the top of the tank (I used a glass top when I kept eels)

    Good luck and feel free to ask as many questions as you like. Someone here will likely know the answer.

    -Doc
     
    Doc, Jun 14, 2008
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    RyanG ^*Eternal Dumbass*^

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    You are correct about diatoms Biff! sorry Sicklids.
     
    RyanG, Jun 14, 2008
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  7. sicklids

    reeffreak

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    Good advice from everybody else so I won't repeat them.

    Good luck and welcome to the site!
     
    reeffreak, Jun 15, 2008
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  8. sicklids

    sicklids salt water dummy

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    thank you guys for all your help and information. i am taking my time, dont want to jump into this too quick seeing as how i am completely ignorant when it comes to saltwater. as of now my SG is 1.008, so hopefully in like 2 weeks i will be up to 1.016, so as you can see, im crawling at a snails pace. trying to learn as much as possible before i make the full plunge! fixing to move to a new house so i am in no hurry until i get moved in. once again thank you very much for all your information, i will be asking plenty more questions, you can bet on that!!!
     
    sicklids, Jun 16, 2008
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  9. sicklids

    yote Ceritfied Mantis Hunter Moderator

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    Welcome to the reef.
     
    yote, Jun 16, 2008
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  10. sicklids

    Bifferwine I am a girl

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    Yeah, try to get your specific gravity up to 1.020 to 1.026, then you can start thinking about the next step. You really can't do much until the salinity is correct though.
     
    Bifferwine, Jun 16, 2008
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