Filthy's 128L Cube


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Hi guys

as mentioned in my first post, complete noob to the reef game but here we go :

So my B-in-law is moving house and decided to get a larger custom tank at the new house and as a result his Boyu 128L was up for grabs.
Despite knowing absolute ziltch about fish-keeping i decided to bite the bullet after he convinced me it was fairly easy and relatively cheap to run / maintain. (punk)

So we emptied out his tank and I stored all the LR in a container which I topped up with water from the tank (to be transported up to JNB)
The fish were then dropped off at his LFS in fairly good condition – apart from a Stunning Royal Gamma that looked a lil stressed when we arrived at the FS (I was back at the store a few days later and discovered he unfortunately did not make it)

So back in JNB, I set up the tank the day after arriving home:



The very next day I visited The VIP Petstore in Northgate as it was the very first one that came to mind. I got myself a bag of Caribsea Bahamas Oolite Live sand – the guy recommended it as it also had aragonite in it – and I was told aragonite is a good thing.
Not sure if my next step was a mistake but I then washed out the new sand in a bucket, basically from almost completely white water to a cloudy water effect.
Rinsed and washed a few times between every hour or so then left the sand to sit overnight in the bucket, the next day I drained out the excess water and the sand was then placed at the base of the tank.

For my water I used a bucket of Seachem Reefsalt mixed in with tap water (I also added some water conditioner for safe measure) after a whole lotta mixing the water was ready to be added so I took the base rock straight outta the container I transported it in and stuck it into the tank before slowly adding the salt water to it.

At this point I noticed that there were some critters that actually survived the journey and being out of tank for a few days – much to my surpise. I was a bit worried because I knew the ammonia levels would soon climb and these poor buggers might peg…. But I had no choice so onward we went.
Some of the critters were nassarius snails who has been doing just fine since day one, many of them are teeny weeny but there is one that has a shell about 2cm in size.

Tank all set up



Heres a close up of the two of the mushrooms that survived

Brown Mushroom Polyp



Pink / Peach Mushroom Polyp



So as it stands, the tank has been cycling since the beginning of May 2015 and things are “looking” ok – looking because I have not actually tested the water as yet. My salt levels were low but I can gladly say they are now perfect (1.025)

I also added two salt water Molies about a week and a half ago – another FS advised that just two of these could help speed up the cycle and their waste would also provide some food for the mushrooms so I did it – not sure if this was a mistake but they are both fine and still alive.
This weekend I introduced a blue legged hermit crab who immediately proceeded to grab the other Scarlet Reef crab and bully him, I put them on either side of the tank.
Blue legged is doing fine, climbs about as though its his tank, scarlet on the other hand has made itself fairly comfortable underneath some of the rock and refuses to come out.

So there you have it. My noob cube :fish:

Would appreciate any feedback or recommendations so feel free to let me have it if I have done something wrong.
 
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Nice one welcome ,there's a purple mushroom in the pics with the Brown Mushroom Polyp on the right just behind the brown one
 
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Nice one welcome ,there's a purple mushroom in the pics with the Brown Mushroom Polyp on the right just behind the brown one
Thank you, yes forget to mention him - he is doing well it seems

Nice setup. Just word of warning, you should not use tap water, conditioner or not, only RO water.
Tnx, I figured I'd try it because moving 100L would have been a small mission. Luckily so far it seems in order. Probably going to regret it once I test the water.

Did 2 water changes so far with RO water since though and no more tap water! I promise

And as it goes with beginners luck, aiptasia's have reared their ugly heads - so that's next on the list of things to sort
 
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100L is nothing. Just 5 * 20L drums.
Talk again when its 500L or 1000L.
true, however you have to bear in mind i have never kept fish before, not even a goldfish in a bowl! so yes i'm learning as i go along

welcome

just question are the mollies still alive ?
Thanks. Yes they are and actually looking quite plump if i do say so. As a matter of fact, nothing that i have observed in the tank from the beginning has died, so as it stands the tank holds
- 2 mollies
- 3 mushroom polyps
- 1 large (2cm shell) nassarius Snail + about 10 teeny weeny snails
- 1 blue legged hermit
- 1 scarlet reef crab

and as of this morning, something that appears to possibly be a starfish.

Tell me what you guys think this is, i saw it sitting stuck against the overflow grate and when i touched it, it simply fell to the bottom of the tank onto a piece of rock. This morning it was in a different spot and looked like it was securely on its feet (if that makes sense) i'm sorry about the por quality image but i had to zoom in big time cos this thing is tiny - like 3mm across

 
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true, however you have to bear in mind i have never kept fish before, not even a goldfish in a bowl! so yes i'm learning as i go along



Thanks. Yes they are and actually looking quite plump if i do say so. As a matter of fact, nothing that i have observed in the tank from the beginning has died, so as it stands the tank holds
- 2 mollies
- 3 mushroom polyps
- 1 large (2cm shell) nassarius Snail + about 10 teeny weeny snails
- 1 blue legged hermit
- 1 scarlet reef crab

and as of this morning, something that appears to possibly be a starfish.

Tell me what you guys think this is, i saw it sitting stuck against the overflow grate and when i touched it, it simply fell to the bottom of the tank onto a piece of rock. This morning it was in a different spot and looked like it was securely on its feet (if that makes sense) i'm sorry about the por quality image but i had to zoom in big time cos this thing is tiny - like 3mm across

I think its most likely one of theses.

Asterina (starfish - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)
 
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Thanks Shaun. i do recall reading up on Asterina's before. somebody mentioned their Linckia Starfish munchs on them.

ps. i shaved my beard off last week (stupid PPE requirement at an engineering site). instant regret.
 
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So about a week or two back I found myself regretting not pulling out all the equipment and giving them a good scrub before I filled the tank.

So I figured it's probably best to get it done before any more life stock goes in.

I serioulsy doubt my b-in-law actually cleaned them as often or as well as he should of.

The first sponge but was completely drenched it gunk!!! I had no idea fish could pooh that much :lol:
It took a good 10 mins of hosing down before the water cleared up.
Next was the skimmer. I had cleaned the collection cup weekly but this time I did the entire unit.
Them were the ceramic sacks, all four were pretty clogged up. They're much better after the hose down.

So the next step is to change the filtration order as was suggested to me
 
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Agree with Shaunn. You cant just clean the stuff with tap water as you will kill a lot of the beneficial bacteria that colonised on it. You might have done more harm than good I am afraid since you could have negatively affected your filtration system. Best is to clean the stuff when you do a water change by using the old water.
 
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man oh man.... so i evidently screwed up again *mahoosive face palm*

there was still plenty water in the chambers when i did the "clean". with this at least be a saving grace with regards to the bacteria?

Should i siphon the gunk from the bottom of the chamber up this weekend whilst re-arranging the filtration order?

Thanks again for the info guys. really appreciate the guidance.
 
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So last night just staring at my tank (as I usually do) I noticed these little thingies on one of the rocks, they have definitely increased in size though they’re currently approx. 3-4mm each. Any idea what they could be?



In this pic you can see a white floss like substance, it has been slowly closing the gap between the two sides, also very curious to know what this is. The crabs have been over it and haven’t nipped at it at all which makes me thing its not just a build up of some substance. The smaller circle is something that resembles a worm but I haven’t actually seen it move, in fact I only really noticed it yesterday. Thoughts?



Another one of these worm like thingies on the same piece of rock but further down:



Also noticed these dudes, what are these?



Then theres this little guy, he is alive because he opens and closes every now and then, also glad to see my scarlet reef crab decided to finally move from the spot under the rocks and do some exploring :)

 
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