01-05-2009, 09:09 PM
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I have really enjoyed my 37 gallon reef, but I would suggest a fish only with live rock for your first marine experience. In any case, the same principles still apply. You want a nice protein skimmer, live rock, and a deep sand bed of 3-4'' aragonite sand. This will be the entire setup, with no additional filtration of any type.
This system would be set up the same if it were a full blown reef, with the only changes being lighting. Given that, if you want to start with a reef, you could certainly add the lights and keep some easy to keep soft coral selections, such as mushrooms, yellow polyps, green star polyps, and buttons.
At this point into my reef the growth has been crazy. My corals are already outgrowing their environment and I will be upgrading into a 58 gallon bowfront when I move in 2 months. For this reason, if you do decide on a reef, be very careful to select corals which will not rapidly outgrow their environment.
Thanks for the compliment on my reef Cody. I can't wait to get started on the big one....-)