My tank.......

Discussion in 'New Members' started by candy, 20 May 2010.

  1. candy

    candy

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    [​IMG] Hi guys, I finally plucked up the will / courage to post pics of our tank. We are beginners to this wonderful hobby. My father always had a sea tank when I was growing up but I never took too much notice of the logistics of the whole thing. Our tank has been running since January 2010 and so far so good.

    Specs are as follows:

    920 mm x 600mm x 560mm
    “Queen” turbo skimmer
    Mechanical filter

    The above are all handed over by DAD! :thumbup: He also made the tank himself.

    At the moment, we have two fluorescent lights which I know is not sufficient.

    Life in the tank is as follows:

    2 X Clowns – shop bought
    1 X Goldie – shop bought
    1 X Mandarin – shop bought
    2 X Sharp-nosed puffers – locally caught
    2 X Flag-tails – locally caught
    1 X (Name unknown – caught at Sheffield beach, had a neon blue stripe on its back but lost its colour after a week. Now is a dark orange/brown colour)
    2 X Boxing Shrimp (living together in harmony :thumbup: ) – locally caught
    A couple of dog fish – locally caught
    A couple of fairy shrimp – locally caught
    A couple of hermit crabs – locally caught
    1 X spider crab – locally caught
    7 or 8 anemone – locally caught

    The fish are thriving although the one puffer is a bit of a bully to the much smaller puffer and I’m considering putting him back in the sea! :nono:The anemones are also doing well, they love their prawn feasts!

    Ok, so this weekend, our project is to build a cabinet and lid for the tank and try and install more suitable lighting. (I would also like to change the background.) I don’t really want to rush into corals etc. but I would like to branch that way eventually. After doing some reading, I see that fluorescent lights are fine if you want to have a fish only tank. I would like to have mainly fish but would like to try “easy” coral and more anemones.

    We do not have much of a budget to go and buy all the expensive lighting that the fish shop sells but with some electrical knowledge and some sound advice, I’m sure we could come up with a plan.

    What do you guys think of having 1 UV light, 1 blue light and 2 fluorescent lights? Perhaps with a timer to try emulate day and night?

    Your advice would be so appreciated!

    Thanks guys :biggrin:[​IMG]
     
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  3. candy

    candy Thread Starter

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    [​IMG]
     
  4. manta

    manta

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    Welcome to MASA. I am sure you will pick up tons of info here. The one piece of LS I would concerned about is the Mandarin. They needs lots of live food unless it has been trained to eat flakes etc.

    Any good luck en I am sure that you will enjoy the hobby.
     
  5. Boegie

    Boegie

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    Nice tank.
     
  6. candy

    candy Thread Starter

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    Yes, I am also concerned about the mandarin, it was a gift and we have only had him for a few days. What if I go and get more rock from the sea with pods etc on? We need more rock anyway.
     
  7. candy

    candy Thread Starter

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    Ok, I have done some more reading on lighting and by the looks of it, UV is not a good option. Please advise on blue and white or moon lighting.:whistling:
     
  8. Singularity

    Singularity Hmmm amper!

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    I`m glad you will be changing the background, what exactly do you want to know about the blue and white or moon lighting ?
     
  9. candy

    candy Thread Starter

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    Well at the moment we only have normal fluorescent lights and I would like to know what kind of lighting is advisable.
     
  10. Singularity

    Singularity Hmmm amper!

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    oh ok, get yourself some t5 flourescent tubes, usually 1 electronic ballast will run 2 tubes, you should be looking at 39w tubes they are about 90cm in lenght. If you fit 2 ballast ie 4 tubes for now it should be fine. I usually go with 10K globes for white and 20K for the blues
     
  11. candy

    candy Thread Starter

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    Thank you very much for the tip! So if I had 4 tubes, should I do 2 white and 2 blue? or should they be timed for different stages or something?
     
  12. Singularity

    Singularity Hmmm amper!

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    2 blue and 2 white would look nice, they can all go on together.
     
  13. candy

    candy Thread Starter

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    Great, I'm going to give that a try. I will post pictures of the revamped tank on Monday! I'm very excited!
     
  14. mandarinman

    mandarinman

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    two white and two blue , start blues up first and a little later turn whites on with blues staying on, thirty mins before lights out turn whites off and at lights out the blues
     
  15. Jacojs

    Jacojs

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    7 or 8 anemone and all you guys are worried about is the mandarin?? Am I missing something or speed reading somehow :whistling:

    Jaco.
     
  16. jacquesb

    jacquesb Retired Moderator

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    Hi Candy - A very WARM welcome to MASA! Great to have you on-board!

    At first - I want to commend you for plucking up the courage to join MASA! Good on you mate!

    Secondly - there's absolutely NO shame in asking for help/assistance, and wanting to learn about keeping marines (alive and happy) long term.

    There's a very successful marine aquarist/reefkeeper in Durban (albeit very private) who has a 6 meter 17000 liter tank/system, with the MOST amazing corals and fish!

    Also - one of the other mods (Mekaeel) also lives in Durbs - he has quite a lot of experience in keeping marines, and currently has a really FANTASTIC tank, which would put ANY tank at Ushaka to shame!

    So - you are surrounded by a huge amount of experience. Two of our administrators of MASA also lives in Durbs - Alan, and DragonReef!

    So - if you really need it - there's more than enough people to contact who can personally and privately assist you.

    That said - I appreciate your efforts in starting a marine tank. I am not sure how many "issues" you have experiencing since you have started this tank, but, I do see a few "warning signs", when I read your introduction, and have a look at the pictures you have posted.

    Please have a read in the information I wrote up for another member (who asked me for help - who lives in Cape Town) which I am attaching. I am not posting this publically, but anyone who is interested can download the text file and read this.

    Please let me know what YOU think, you are doing that COULD possibly cause a potential tank crash, when you compare what you have done, with what I have typed up in the text attachment.

    In the meanwhile, can you perhaps answer the following questions for me?
    - do you have any water testing kits? if you do, what do you have, and what brands are these?
    - how often do you do water changes?
    - how often do you clean out that canister filter you have posted a picture of?
    - can you please post the actual test results of the following?
    = ammonia
    = nitrites
    = nitrates
    = pH
    = water temp
    = salinity (do you have a hydrometer and/or refractometer?)
    - do you use RO/DI filtered fresh water to top up your tank?

    Many thanks.

    Here's the attachment.....
     

    Attached Files:

  17. chikaboo

    chikaboo

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    those would be the local "rock" anemone's .... Well they pretty hardy and I think going to try and eat our fish if given the chance.... Sorry bad manners .... Welcome to MASA ... enjoy your stay here... So with regards to locally caught fish - unfortunately not a good idea to return them to the sea, you must rather find someone to donate them to as it is illegal to put back stuff into the sea once you have introduced them in your tank as you may carry a "gogga" back to the sea and could wipe out an entire coastline....
     
  18. chikaboo

    chikaboo

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    Nice attachment JB ... BTW .. how wide is the screen you using? I always like going to tips for newbies to remind me and to see if I'm missing something to have a better tank ... But your file I keep going from left to right....:razz:
     
  19. jacquesb

    jacquesb Retired Moderator

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    LOL Chikaboo - not very wide screen (yet - my next laptop going to have 17.6 inch wide-screen! woohoo!) LOL..... No - I just forgot to "format" the TXT file.... no "carriage returns" in the file..... ;)
     
  20. candy

    candy Thread Starter

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    Dear Jacques, Wow, thank you for your concern and advice. I must admit that I am not too clued up with all the questions you have asked. My boyfriend does most of the technical stuff.

    At the moment, we only have a thermometer and a salinity tester. We do top ups with RO water. When you ask, how often do you do water changes, please advise as to how much water we should be changing and how often. :) my boyfriend cleans the filter out so i'm not actually sure how often its being done but knowing him its probably often!

    We are buying a 90l nano tank from a friend today and he is giving us all the testing kits that we need so I'll post results once we have done the tests.

    As far as your set-up is concerned, let me tell you how we did ours. Once the tank was set up we used sea-sand as our substrate - sand which was underwater, not the dry sand on the beach. We then filled the tank up with seawater and left the pump etc. running for about two or three weeks. We then got rocks from the deeper rock-pools, the ones that looked the most "alive". We also had a few more decorative rocks that were in my father's tank. This we left for another few weeks. After about 7 or 8 weeks, we introduced the flagtails, hermits, dogfish, and a couple of the rock anemones.

    And there you have it! I'm sure we have made mistakes along the way!

    As I said in my first post, we really don't have a big budget to go out and buy a whole lot of stuff but we are very capable of making anything!

    We haven't really had any issues so far, and as I said before, our fish are growing and thriving and I'm pleased to say, that what we thought were two male boxing shrimp have now become a mated pair!

    Once again, thank you for your advice, you really seem to care about us newbies!

    Chickaboo - Thanks for the tip, I honestly had no idea that you couldn't put fish back into the sea.
     
  21. candy

    candy Thread Starter

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    Struggling to find decent globes! Pet shop prices are pathetic and electrical wholesalers only have 18 watt blue globes... Any ideas?
     
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