12-03-2009, 12:33 AM
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seeing that your in florida your in a great position. there are alot of local reef clubs around your state, look for a good one and get involved. ask questions, read, and read some more. local reefing clubs are great for learning, meeting people and picking up used equiptment cheap. IMO a few months research are needed prior purchasing anything... anything, tank included, let alone fish. a decent protein skimmer goes for how much you have to spend with your budget. i dont intend to bring you down, only to give you the heads up. there are ways around this though, like finding one that was used for a cheaper price. however, on any tank larger then a nano a quality skimmer IMO is required. patience seriously cannot be stressed enough in this hobby and one must think long term. i know more then 1 clownfish (and some other fish) that are 10+ years old so keep the big picture in mind. doing things right from the start will save a ton of money and lead to greater chance to a long term succesful, healthy, enjoyable aquarium.
as for the sand shifting, that was most likely a sleeper goby of some sort as NCFrank mentioned. i would not put gravel in my saltwater tank to begin with but i would def. not let one of these guys sift gravel as it prob. isnt the best for passing through their gills.
do you have a size tank in mind?
welcome to the forum.