New And In Trouble

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself' started by james, Dec 21, 2006.

  1. james

    james

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    Hi All,
    Am terrified we are going to kill all our new little friends.

    My wife gave me a surprise Birthday present last Saturday ,Fully stocked Salt Water aquarium purchased and installed by a commercial supplier here in Jakarta Indonesia .It has tank , pump , filter , light , all in one unit.
    It contains seven various fish plus anemones and plants and is an absoulute pleasure to view.

    concern No 1: water temprature . the guy told my wife that the water temprature should be between 26 - 29 c. If temp exceeds this place ICE CUBES in the tank??? This can't be right ??

    Even with the room air conditioner on the tank thermometer reads 30c so we have been leaving the built in light off to try and get the temp down .Gets down to 28/29c. We can't see too much and the anominies are in rest mode a lot . we only turn the light on when feeding.

    Concern No 2: Feeding. My wife was given some pre packaged frozen "Blood worms" and a small container of dried fish food . were told to give half a pellet of frozen food in the morning and a minuite amount of the dried food at night . the fish seem constantly hungry and agitated. I think they have been nibbling at the anemones. For two days now we have been doubling the food .Don't know if this helps the fish but we feel a bit better. Will this kill the fish or upset the balance of the tank? They eat everything within a few minuites.

    Apart from three "Nemo" type fish I havn't recognised anything from the brief look at the Photo gallery .

    Desperately need some guidance here .

    Thanks and Regards,
    James
     
    james, Dec 21, 2006
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  2. james

    bobby I like to do bad things.

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    hehe right behind you. hehe
    how big is the tank with everything built in it sounds like a nano cube if so its probably overstocked the anenome requires alot of light so that will need to run more instead of putting ice cubes in the water ive heard of people putting them in bags that way the cube dont pollute your tank and let the bag float to keep the temp down yes feeding too much can and will compromise your water quality the fish will always act hungry but i feed mine once every 3 days in the wild they may go a week before eating so cutting down on food will be ok on feeding the anenome i dont know ive never owned one before i just know they need alot of light to survive if you can post the size of your tank and maby a discription of the fish and im sure some one with more insite than i am able to offer will step in and help more good luck and keep us posted
     
    bobby, Dec 21, 2006
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  3. james

    jhnrb

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    Contact the person who installed the system for you and follow his advice until you can get yourself up to speed. for the temperature there are some small chillers that are affordable to control your heat problem. turning off the lights to keep the temperature down will definitely affect the anemonie and any other corals fairly soon. good luck keep us posted and if you provide us with more information on your system we may be able to further help. welcome to the site. keep us posted.
     
    jhnrb, Dec 22, 2006
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  4. james

    james

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    Thanks one and all , attached are a couple of photo's from my Hand Phone ( sorry about the quality).

    What should be the optimum water temp?

    Interesting that the fish always appear hungry ,could be over feeding and will pay the price in a week or two if the water goes off.
    As you might be able to see the plant in the top right has been well chewed.
    Will the fish kill the anemones and coral?

    The guy who installed the aquarium said he needs to come back every month to do a "service" , is that enough ? We weren't given any instructions other than feed the fish and don't leave the light on for more than 12 hours.

    Sorry for the dumb questions.
    James
    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]
     
    james, Dec 22, 2006
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  5. james

    james

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    Thanks all ,
    Will post some photo's .

    Have been getting a lot of info from Living Reefs Site , good stuff .

    Have reduced the feed and increased the time with the light on .

    Nothing has died so far .

    The guy that delivered the Aquarium says that he will need to " Service" the
    tank ounce a month ? We weren'y given any other instructions on maintenance .Will have to keep reading .

    Thanks and Regards,
    James

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
    james, Dec 23, 2006
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  6. james

    Ironman

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    Hello, the tank looks very nice,and judging by the design and compatability the company that set it up is good at what they do so follow there advice, I would recommend that you watch them carefully when they come and service the tank, ask questions and take notes. after awhile you will be able to take care of the tank yourself.
    as for the temperature, he is pretty close on the readings he gave you, 25 to 28 is ok, it not the end of the world if the temp gets to 30 after the lights have been on all day, but it needs to cool back down after the lights shut off, constant high temperature isnt good.
    If he hasnt told you what you have here is what ive seen from the pic.
    1. top right Green Caluerpa - certain fish will nip and eat.
    2. bellow that is a white frogspawn. (LPS)
    3. bellow that is a orange sun coral. (Must be spot fed to do well)(LPS)
    4. Below that is a colony of yellow star polyps. (pretty but once established will spread and sting other corals)
    5. Middle of tank - pearl bubble coral. (LPS)
    6. Left of that looks like fuzzy green mushrooms
    7. right above the cave is a feather duster

    hope this helps and keep us posted
     
    Ironman, Dec 23, 2006
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  7. james

    Bifferwine I am a girl

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    Wow, you have seven fish in there? Overcrowding could definitely be a problem.

    That black and white striped fish is a damsel, they get extremely territorial and have been known to kill other fish. I'd advise you to watch for him chasing and beating up other fish, he may have to be removed if he starts misbehaving. Especially if he gets too hungry or "claims" a particular area of the tank. They can also beat up corals if they get REALLY territorial.

    I think... I see a cowfish in the corner? Maybe? That one's pretty blurry, so I am probably wrong. But if it is a cowfish, they generally need larger tanks, they are also venemous and can release their toxins into the water and kill other animals in your tank when they get scared or threatened. He also might eat your tubeworm. Yours seems little, he might be fine for a while in your tank. If he starts appearing stressed out or agitated, I'd be careful.

    You also have three clowns which are good choices for a new tank, and for a tank your size.

    The yellow fish, that's hard to tell because it's a bit blurry, I'd guess that it's a clown goby. I think this fish is also a good choice for your tank.

    I can't really tell what the other fish is -- sorry. I hope I helped you understand the ones I could see a little better.

    I don't think any of them but the damsel would nip at the corals. The clownfish are probably trying to host them, but I doubt they are eating them. Clowns can act pretty aggressive towards their hosts, it can easily be mistaken for hurtful behavior.

    This tank will likely need maintenance more often than once a month. Like Ironman said, try to read up and learn as much as you can so that you can recognize when stuff starts to go wrong and fix it. Most emergencies won't be able to wait for an appoinment.

    As for turning the lights off to keep it cooler, the corals need light to survive. As long as your temperature doesn't differ by much during night and day, you should be okay. A one degree temperature jump is not worrisome, it's large temperature swings that you need to be careful of.

    You can increase the amount of food you give them as long as it gets eaten. You want to minimize waste as much as possible -- if they seem to eat it all within a minute or two and you're not getting a bunch of gunk on the bottom of the tank, you're probably fine.

    Did the guy that set this up give you any tests so that you can check your water parameters at home? If not, I'd highly recommend you buy some tests so that you can check your water at least once a week. The major ones you would need are: pH, ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate. I don't have a nano tank myself, I'm sure someone else here can recommend any others that would be useful for you. Regular testing of your water will help you sleep better at night, and you can keep tank disasters from happening if you know what your water conditions are.

    Good luck, let us know what happens! It really looks beautiful, you have a cool wife :)
     
    Bifferwine, Dec 23, 2006
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  8. james

    Ironman

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    I agree with bifferwine on the fish stuff, the damsels are very hardy but can get agressive especially in a small tank and in few numbers. there is also a white stripe maroon clown. they can be territorial also but make good fish. there is also a Ocellaris clown (NEMO) they are excellent fish and pretty hardy. the cowfish I have never kept but I havent ever heard anything good about them. I think they usually dont live long for most people. the yellow fish looks like a yellow corris wrasse, I believe they will nip at corals sometimes. I couldnt make out any of the other fish. the quantity of fish is alot but can be done with regular water changes and close monitoring, you may need to do water changes ever two weeks.
    Also Did they bring already cycled water and live rock with them? normally it would take weeks to months for a tank to cycle and then months to add the number of corals and fish you have. if the tank has problems it could be the fact that the cycle has been disturbed. It is possible to do a instant setup like yours if they new what they were doing, and from the looks of the corals they are very happy for only being a couple days in a new tank. the corals you have arnt usually very forgiving, when theres something wrong with the water they will be the first to let you know.
     
    Ironman, Dec 23, 2006
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  9. james

    james

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    Thanks, Ironman, Bifferwine, for taking the time to reply to my concerns.

    Have made a few errors and paid the price , unfortunately to the detriment of the aquarium.

    BIGGEST MISTAKE ! Topped up the aquarium from a 20 liter drum of salt water the supplier left behind after installation. I think this was the biggest influencer in the deterioration of the aquarium.

    CASUALTIES:
    Cowfish?: Passed away today (wife’s favorite). Pale yellow , very square in shape with small transparent fins?
    Frogspawn: Slowly died.
    Yellow Star: Slowly died
    Greenish Coral: quickly died (under Frogspawn)
    Anemone that the Nemo’s hang out in : Doesn't look too well at all. (Nothing like in the photo's from a week ago)

    You are right about the damsiel , it’s annoying ! will keep our eye on it’s behaviour.


    The slow demise of the ecosystem is distressing to both my wife and I so we are off to the Supplier tomorrow to try and find out what we need to do to get things back on track. We won't be replacing anything until we are comfortable that there is a reasonable chance of survival. The Tank was a Surprise Birthday Present so I wasn't home when it was installed and all we got was one A4 sized Instruction Sheet in Indonesian.

    Bifferwine mentioned a test kit ?, is there anything else we should purchase while we are there? We have nothing except some food that was supplied with the tank.

    Again thanks for generously sharing your knowledge and I look forward to Posting an “All’s Well!†soon.

    Regards,
    James and Dita.
     
    james, Jan 5, 2007
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  10. james

    Bifferwine I am a girl

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    Ouch. Sorry for your losses! Yeah, the water top off might have done it, remember salt doesn't evaporate, so always top off with fresh water.

    Definitely pick up pH, ammonia, nitrite and nitrate test kits. Those are the basic four that everyone should have on hand. It's also a good idea that you always have some extra salt water on hand at home in case there is an emergency and you need to do a quick water change.

    I think you are smart to not add any more animals until you get the tank under control. Once it stabilizes and your remaining animals regain their health and keep healthy for a while, you can slowly start building it back to what it used to be.

    You can recover from this, just take it slow and try to read as much as possible. A nice-looking tank is worth it in the end!
     
    Bifferwine, Jan 6, 2007
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  11. james

    Ironman

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    hello, Sorry to hear about your losses. Unfortunatly what happened to you happens to 75% of new hobbiest. Its is a very good way to learn. First thing to do is buy a book on the basics of a saltwater or reef aquarium. then you should buy a master test kit or at least purchase a Ph, ammonia, nitrate. you also need to get a hydrometer. this will tell you what the salt content is in the water so you dont have another problem like this. If and when you buy more corals start with soft corals. they are usually less expensive and more forgiving. things like leathers, zooanthids, zenia. Once you get used to the proper care and maintenance you can pull things out to make room for more difficult corals to keep. the corals they put in the tank for you are pretty corals but they are all LPS corals which are not forgiving and really need a well established tank. If they are maintaining the tank for you regularly it is possible to keep nicer stuff starting out but when things like this happen they should be at your door the minute something isnt right, thats what your paying them for. If they know what they are doing they should be able to see the problem and fix it before to much is lost.
    Anyway, most important buy a book! read it cover to cover. there are so many things we just cant tell you on a forrum, and its easier to apply what youve read. keep us informed and were here for you!
     
    Ironman, Jan 6, 2007
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  12. james

    james

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    Again , Thanks all for your input and advise , will advise progress.

    Thanks ,
    James and Dita
     
    james, Jan 6, 2007
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  13. james

    jhnrb

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    If you added saltwater for makeup, your salinity went too high as you now know. Without test kits you have no way of knowing what is going on in your system. You can rely on the person who installed it for you initially and as you gain experiance you will be able to take over the maintenance portion of the system. It is a very nice system and looked very good. We all make mistakes and that is how we learn sometimes. Do not get discouraged. Be patient, deal with the problem, and enjoy your system. Keep us posted on how you are progressing. If the filtration is adequate and you do not overfeed once a month should be ok for maintenance, however, if your bio load is to much for the system, then more frequent maintenance is needed. The only way to determine this is by testing the water parameters. So for now follow the advice of the service person, ask questions, and compare notes with others, such as here. Good luck and keep us posted. let us know if we can be of any further help. // oh and by the way if you need to cool your system you can float ice cubes in a freezer bag/zip lock/ use distilled water or RO water incase there is a leak. Makeup water is just that to add fresh RO or distilled water to the system slowly to compensate for evaporation. Fresh saltwater is for water changes when you take water out you replace it with fresh salt water. Always top off the system to the desired level with fresh water as noted for makeup and let mix well before doing a water change, that way your salinity will stay in an acceptable range. Hope this helps.
     
    jhnrb, Jan 6, 2007
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  14. james

    JellyMan

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    Ok one question well make that two actually, where did you get your wife and where can I get one of those. Being new in it I would recomend the book Saltwater aquariums for dummies very good beginners book (have one myself that I still look over and Ive been doin it for three years) there are so many things that could have caused your crash Im sorry for your losses, if you have any more questions dont hesitate to ask.
     
    JellyMan, Jan 8, 2007
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  15. james

    james

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    Hi Jelly Man.
    Where did I get my wife and where did I get the aquarium? :D
    Yeah, she’s pretty Cool, my wife’s from Java, we live in Jakarta Indonesia. ( she’ll get a kick when she reads your comment) :D The aquariums are on display at Ace Hardware and larger Upmarket Department stores here , they come in various shapes and sizes. There is no manufacturers name that I can easily see.The company my wife bought the aquarium from is called C-Fish , have googled it to no avail. Beeferwine informed us that it’s a Nano Cube type tank ? Got a lot to learn !!

    As delivered and set up the aquarium was (still is) a thing of beauty and wonder . The tank itself is very well made with curved glass corners and lighting and filtration systems built in to the moulded plastic hood . Almost noiseless operation.

    Am going to Australia next week and will hit the Aquarium suppliers for your book and a good hydrometer . Apart from Test Kit , Hydrometer and a reference book is there anything else I should get?.

    Havn't had anything die since last week. The one we call “ Pencil Fish “ is pretty shabby at the moment .Have added as much fresh water as we can but the salt levels might still be high. The lady from the Supplier is coming to our home this week to check out the aquarium. We have asked her to supply a Test Kit .

    My wife has also asked to have the Damsel and the Balon removed as they are bullying the other fish . As previously mentioned nothing new will go in till we get things sorted.

    Again , thanks to all.

    Regards,
    James and Dita.
     
    james, Jan 9, 2007
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  16. james

    JellyMan

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    Yeah I dont blame you for the removals there good about bullying, Im glad you have had no more die off what are you currently left with?

    P.S. hang onto the wife any woman that will do that for a man is a keeper in my book I have a hard enough time to get my wife to hardly buy me a fish let alone a fully stocked beautiful aquarium.
     
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2007
    JellyMan, Jan 9, 2007
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  17. james

    yote Ceritfied Mantis Hunter Moderator

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    James,you might want to look at refractometer over the hydrometer. I just bought one myself after the swing arm fell out of my hydrometer . more accurate and easier to use IMO.
     
    yote, Jan 9, 2007
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  18. james

    james

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    Thanks Guy’s,
    Refractometer? Better Google that one too !!
    Really need that Test Kit etc .Have since learnt there are many unscrupulous operators in Indonesia where Reef fish and corals are abundant. I need to get up to speed ASAP.

    We have someone who will look after the aquarium while we’re gone . Now that's a friend!

    James and Dita.
     
    james, Jan 10, 2007
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  19. james

    Bifferwine I am a girl

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    If you have the time while you are in Australia, just spend some time in a fish store for a while (until they kick you out!). Check out the products on their shelves and read what they're for, check out their tank set-ups, ask questions of the employees... You'll learn a lot just from listening to them talk to other customers. Have a good trip, let us know what you pick up.
     
    Bifferwine, Jan 10, 2007
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  20. james

    JellyMan

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    Hi James, good that you found a tank sitter I know that there is alot to process in this perticular hobby, your not going to get there overnite as biff suggested, local fish stores talk to people there, watch programs on channels such as animal planet, discovery, etc, and read read read aquire all the info you can and in no time youll be up to speed hope this helps.
     
    JellyMan, Jan 10, 2007
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