Saving a Poor Tank

Discussion in 'New to Reefing' started by Shep, Aug 28, 2013.

  1. Shep

    Shep

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    Hey

    So here is the situation, at the college that I go to there is a saltwater tank set up and lightly stocked but it is disgusting to look at. I do not think anyone has ever given the tank any care at all. Here are some pictures, I will try to take better ones soon.
    I hate looking at this tank because I feel that it could be a great thing to spark the interests of students and teachers alike but with the way it looks now I doubt it does anything. I would really like the community's help in suggesting affordable things that could be done to salvage the tank. What I hope to do is draft a proposal and try to get the school to allow me to give this tank a second chance.

    Thanks!
     
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2013
    Shep, Aug 28, 2013
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  2. Shep

    Shep

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    Here are three taken with my phone, tomorrow I will take pictures with a better camera.
     

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    Shep, Aug 28, 2013
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  3. Shep

    Aquarian

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    Are they teaching what not to do?
     
    Aquarian, Aug 28, 2013
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  4. Shep

    Aquarian

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    I think a water change may kill it.
     
    Aquarian, Aug 28, 2013
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  5. Shep

    Shep

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    I really wish I knew, last year the tank was is pretty bad shape but it has just gotten so much worse.
     
    Shep, Aug 28, 2013
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  6. Shep

    Aquarian

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    I would bite bullet and remove the coral. Scrub the crap off the glass, vac the sand and siphon the water out make new Rodi water, blast the rock with a turkey blaster in the old water, put it back in the tank and hope for a short cycle.
     
    Aquarian, Aug 28, 2013
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  7. Shep

    Sakura2282 Reef lover!!!

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    I guess first you need to do some tests to the water to check the parameters and see how they are. Are those mushrooms at the bottom? Is it sand or gravel the substrate?

    I believe the tank deserves to be taking care of, I'm amazed of how it could survive this long.
     
    Sakura2282, Aug 28, 2013
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  8. Shep

    Shep

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    The substrate is sand and close up they look like some kind of mushroom but I do not know if they are a pest or what. I am amazed as well, both of the corals are huge but the one on the right has lost a great bit of its size over the summer. I just hope it will not be to little to late or if the corals are so used to these crap conditions that fixing the tank could kill them.
     
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2013
    Shep, Aug 28, 2013
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  9. Shep

    Shep

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    There are two problems, first both of the corals are huge and would be very difficult to remove and second I am very inexperienced with coral so I would be terrified of killing them. If you have any tips on how to safely do this I would be very thankful
     
    Shep, Aug 28, 2013
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  10. Shep

    Sakura2282 Reef lover!!!

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    You definitely have a good point there, but maybe you should try small water changes to start up. Like doing a gallon or half of RODI saltwater just to see how they respond. I do think you eventually will need to move them out of the tank to clean it up or find a new one. I don't believe thus one will be easy to clean. By the way, How big is the tank?
     
    Sakura2282, Aug 28, 2013
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  11. Shep

    RockStacker

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    That will most likely shock the corals and kill them or stress them out.
    Remember, fluctuation shock swings both ways. If these corals have already acclimated to these current conditions, switching them rapidly to a "clean" tank will probably stress them out as well.

    The best approach to cleaning the tank would be incremental water changes as well as scraping off some of the crud from the glass.
    Do not remove all of the glass crud at the same time, as it would let more light into the tank all of a sudden.
     
    RockStacker, Aug 28, 2013
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  12. Shep

    RockStacker

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    If there are no fish, the tank has virtually very low bioload.
    The deterioration of water quality progressed slow enough that the corals were able to adjust properly.

    The corals I saw in the tank all look like "dirty water" corals so they were able to manage.
     
    RockStacker, Aug 28, 2013
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  13. Shep

    Sakura2282 Reef lover!!!

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    I agree, a sudden change will definitely kill them. It has to be done slowly.
     
    Sakura2282, Aug 28, 2013
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  14. Shep

    Shep

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    I do not know how large the tank is but I will look into that. There is one fish last time I looked, which was last semester, I have not seen it since. It is some type of reef chromis. I will ask about doing water tests to see what the parameters are at and go from there. So in your honest opinions is this tank savable?


    Just looked around and I think it is a Barrier Reef Chromis
    http://www.liveaquaria.com/diversden/ItemDisplay.cfm?c=2733+3&ddid=199838
     
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2013
    Shep, Aug 28, 2013
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  15. Shep

    Shep

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    So how slow should I go? Once or twice a week or around once a day?
     
    Shep, Aug 28, 2013
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  16. Shep

    Sakura2282 Reef lover!!!

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    I don't believe that fish is still alive. I'll do it once a week and no more that 3% to 5% percent of the water to avoid disturbing the current conditions too much. And also start scraping the tank by small sections.

    By doing this you will be adding some nutrients to the corals and more light.

    I'm not an expert, but that's what I'll do. I believe it's savable.
     
    Sakura2282, Aug 28, 2013
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  17. Shep

    chichimom79 reef junkie

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    It's savable or those corals would not be alive. See if they will let you give it some TLC. Maybe you'll get a part time job out of the deal. Sounds fun to take care of a tank with someone else's money. Hehe :D
     
    chichimom79, Aug 28, 2013
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  18. Shep

    RockStacker

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    It would be ironic if the corals end up dying because of all the new attention.
    I have seen monster corals thrive in neglected conditions only to die due to an influx of TLC.
     
    RockStacker, Aug 28, 2013
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  19. Shep

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    That's what I'm thinking too
     
    Aquarian, Aug 29, 2013
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  20. Shep

    Shep

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    That is what I am affarid of doing, I am going to approach the department head tomorrow and see how it goes.
     
    Shep, Aug 29, 2013
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