Newbie marine tank enthusiast

Discussion in 'New Members' started by Slinky, 31 May 2010.

  1. Slinky

    Slinky

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    Hi everyone. I am a newcomer to the whole marine tank experience. I have a Jewel 120l RIO. My idea was to start small and slow and upgrade as my experience grows.


    The tank has been operating for two months with ~13kg live rock. WQ stabilised quicker than expected so started adding livestock as follows:
    • 0 weeks - 10kg live rock
    • 4 weeks - 2 clowns (+- 2cm ea), 2 hermits and 1 snail.
    • 6 weeks - 2 more clowns (+- 2cm ea), 2 humbugs
    • 8 weeks - added 3kg live rock, 1 scopa tang (+-4cm) and 1 cleaner shrimp
    WQ has remained fairly stable but I undertake weekly 25l water changes. Given the age of the tank I did have some red algae and green filamentous algae which I physically removed. Since introducing the tang, the filamentous algae has gone.

    Overall the livestock seems quite happy. I was especially pleased when red-legged hermit relocated to a shell I had added. All the invertebrates have already moulted once. The shrimp appears to have a cleaning station established. Would another cleaner shrimp work in this sized tank?

    I found this forum through looking for RO water advice. I found RO water from a shop in Broadacres, Jhb but it's a mission from Hurlingham. Anyone know of quality RO supply closer to Sandton? I'm pondering the sense of buying a 5-stage RO filter - prices are ~R1900 compared to R1/l from the fish shop. Doesn't really make much financial sense but will save missioning to the shop on a weekly basis.

    I'm feeding 1 frozen shrimp cube per day (half in the morning and evening). Any more and the tank seems to get cloudy. Is that sufficient? The tang likes it although I thought it was pure herbivore. I intend to also add some dried seaweed for the tang.

    I'm keen to add a blue tang. Is there likely to be an issue with the existing scopa tang? I guess I am also interested what total number of livestock this RIO tank could support?
     
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  3. deadmeat2016

    deadmeat2016 Wouter

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    Welcome to MASA, it sounds like you know what ur doing :thumbup:
     
  4. Boegie

    Boegie

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    Welcome
     
  5. Russell1986

    Russell1986

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    Hi Slinky, WOLCOME TO MASA

    Not an exspert but I wouldn't be looking to get anymore tangs 120L is not really big enough for any tangs!!! Great work on the setup though. Post pics please!!!:thumbup:
     
  6. flipwhip

    flipwhip

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    Welcome to MASA…...:thumbup:
     
  7. Slinky

    Slinky Thread Starter

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    Hmm, I wonder now if I've overstocked my tank? I found a couple of "rule-of-thumb" guides on max length per tank vol but they all look very crude. They seem to suggest about 17-20cm of small/medium fish for a 125l tank although I've also found a method suggesting ~28cm for the surface area of this type of tank.
     
  8. crispin

    crispin

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    hi slinky and welcome to masa nice to have u join :)

    getting RO from a petshop is often expensive in the long run and in my view its always worth having your own unit at home, if only for emergencies and the times you might need to do a large water change.

    it sounds like your tank is comming on well, but why get 4 clowns out of intrest? Do you know what kind of clowns they are? Clowns often get aggresive towards each other and some species are particularly territorial so its worth watching out.

    with regards to number of fish per foot of tank or surface area etc etc, ive personally found those rules to be a poor way to stock a tank. Its best to read up about the different fish you want and choose fish on their behavior and feeding requirments. In that case a tang really requires alot more swimming space than you have available and woundlt be a good choice for that tank in mu opinion. Rather have a look at bluezoo.com, or liveaquaria.com (i think those are right, esle just google the names) and read through the different descriptions of the fish available. Pay attention to the size of reccomended tank, but after a while and with some experience you'll know what goes well in your tank:)

    welcome to masa
     
  9. Tobes

    Tobes Retired Moderator

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    Welcome to MASA slinky, glad you joined. I agree with Crispin - your tank is a bit small for tangs, they require a lot of swimming space and can stress easily, get white spot which can affect the whole tank and you could lose all your fish. A standard 4ft tank is usually the bare minimum to keep a tang or 2.

    On the feeding side. You must first defrost the frozen food in cold RO water, pour it through a tea strainer and rince with RO - now you can put it in the tank. This will prevent the water from going cloudy. The juices from frozen food will also cause high nutrients and nuisance algae.
    Frozen brine shrimp is also not so highly nutritional and you need to feed a different type food as well like good quality marine flakes/pellets.
    You can feed once a day, one day brine shrimp and the next day the flakes. With a small tank like that you'll get bad water quality quick quick. Just keep an eye on your nitrates.

    Rather buy your own RO unit. Check out the waterboy in the sponsors forum. You can get a 4 stage RO unit with resin chamber and a set of spare cartridges for less than R2000 I think. Will work out cheaper in the long run and you know that the water will be right. There is no guarantee that the water will always be OK from the LFS.
     
  10. Slinky

    Slinky Thread Starter

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    Cheers for the response. They are false clowns. No real basis for getting four except two seemed lost in the tank. They all seem to get on very well and congregate together around some orange foliage. I never noticed any aggressive tendencies (and I gaze at the tank a lot - my wife jokes I should marry it :p). The humbugs chase each other occassionally and buzz around the tank but again, nothing overtly aggressive.

    The idea with the tang, apart from how good they look, was to assist with the algae growth. This is working out well so far. Although nutrient levels are within spec I was finding some red and green algae has been developing. Given the size issue though, perhaps a smaller blennie or rabittfish might have been a better option? :dft001: Any other suggestions?
     
  11. Slinky

    Slinky Thread Starter

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    Cheers everyone for the excellent advice. The straining idea had never occurred to me but makes a lot of sense. Thanks... :thumbup:

    Regarding the feeding, I do feed them pellets occassionally but they seemed to be more partial to the shrimps. A structured alternating feed is a good plan which I will adopt.
     
  12. Tobes

    Tobes Retired Moderator

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    Forgot to mention, just remember to discard the strained off water and juice - you don't want to much of that in your tank. Some guys do indeed use it though, but on big systems that's matured properly with lots of filter feeders ;)
     
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