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Mulling ideas for my 10 gallon - Clowns and corals?

This is a discussion on Mulling ideas for my 10 gallon - Clowns and corals? within the Beginner Saltwater Aquariums forums, part of the Saltwater Fish and Coral Reef Tanks category; --> Just a hardy, cheap damsel to provide an ammonia source and an indicator that something is wrong. I think the most commonly used are ...

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Mulling ideas for my 10 gallon - Clowns and corals?
Old 02-12-2014, 05:57 PM   #21
 
Just a hardy, cheap damsel to provide an ammonia source and an indicator that something is wrong. I think the most commonly used are Yellowtail Blue Damsel?
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Old 02-12-2014, 09:29 PM   #22
 
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Yeah the yellow tail are the ones most often used for this along with the blue damsel. I really like the springeri damsel as it is pretty,reef safe and not as aggressive as its counterparts.
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Old 02-13-2014, 08:31 AM   #23
 
I just want it for the cycle/establishment of the tank so I'm looking for common, $5 damsels. Are the yellowtail, blue and three spot domino damsels reef-safe?

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Old 02-13-2014, 08:45 AM   #24
 
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I just want it for the cycle/establishment of the tank so I'm looking for common, $5 damsels. Are the yellowtail, blue and three spot domino damsels reef-safe?
Fish are not really necessary for a cycle in saltwater. Live rock and live sand have enough beneficial bacteria to cycle a tank. Add the live rock and live sand and in as little as a few days, everything will read zero!

When so you plan on adding coral? I would wait until dKH and calcium stabilize. New tanks have higher demands in these two parameters, with the production of coralline algae and short cycling. You want to get dKH to stabilize around 8-12 and calcium between 400-450 ppm.


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Old 02-13-2014, 09:35 AM   #25
 
I also want something to look at while my corals are establishing that, if something should go wrong, won't be a $150 clown or the likes. I'm going to be using dry rock and live sand, not live rock.

Not sure when I'll add coral, I'll probably wait until the tank has been cycled for at least a month.
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Old 02-13-2014, 11:50 AM   #26
 
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With all base rock it may take longer than anticipated before you are able to start dropping corals in.

Even if you start off with all live rock and sand you still need to cycle the tank. Readings of 0 in the beginning does not mean the tank is done with its organic waste conversion. Transferring of live rock and sand in to different systems causes a small shift\die off in the organisms present. I don't know how many times I have heard from a new hobbyist...My tank is reading good on water parameters with 0 ammonia,0 nitrite, 0 nitrate, and 0 phosphate but I have algae,diatoms,cyano, or my corals and snails are not doing well"What should I do?".These issues are all part of a bigger scheme with an over abundance of one thing causing imbalances in the system.Long story short is wait more than a few days to put in anything especially sensitive inverts and test before you tweak the system.Get a full range test kit so you don't have to rely on others testing your ammonia,PH,nitrite,nitrate.It also will help you understand some of the relations in parameters such as calcium,KH,mag.

Keeping a nano with many corals can be a fine line especially if you plan on having sensitive SPS corals.Certainly doable with lots of research and patience but I can tell you there is a reason there are not really nice nanos like that in many peoples homes and that has to do with money and serious attention to the details.
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Old 02-13-2014, 12:00 PM   #27
 
I know it'll take a while and I don't want to add the corals until the tank has been stable for at least a month for that reason.
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Old 02-13-2014, 05:39 PM   #28
 
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I must apologize. The "cycle" I was referring to was strictly the Nitrigen Cycle. Badx is right, a tank needs to substantially mature before adding life is appropriate. I was actually posting hoping you would forego the damsel as a "fish-in" cycle. My main point was the bacteria you are usually seeking (when doing a fish-in cycle in freshwater aquaria) is already present in the live rock and live sand, eliminating the need for fish in the cycle.


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Old 02-13-2014, 07:01 PM   #29
 
Now I'm confused, why do people cycle with damsels then? I won't be using live rock so it is going to put a significant damper on this process.
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Old 02-13-2014, 07:56 PM   #30
 
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Now I'm confused, why do people cycle with damsels then? I won't be using live rock so it is going to put a significant damper on this process.
Are you using live sand? It is far more beneficial bacteria-wise than rock, anyhow. There are millions of more bacteria in sand than rock, since every grain of sand has bacteria on every surface. The finer the sand, the more bacteria it can hold. A rock has a much larger surface area per rock, but if you flattened out the all the sand in your tank to represent every surface area on each grain of sand, it would be far larger than the surface area of all your rock in the tank.

With base-rock or dry-rock, there can be significant phosphate leaching for the first few months. I had this problem when I set up my current tank. Mostly dry rock and a huge hair algae bloom that still surfaces every so often.

I assume people fish-in cycle marine tanks because that has been common practice in freshwater aquaria since the dawn of fish keeping. Damsels are usually used because they are very hardy fish. You basically have to get them wet to keep them alive. It still stresses out the fish. I have set up multiple saltwater tanks and have never done a fish in cycle. In my most current tank, it took me six months to add fish, and after I lost them (and I'm still unsure as to why) I waited another four to start stocking again. I currently have one Bicolor Dottyback that has been the sole inhabitant for a few months now...


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Last edited by wake49; 02-13-2014 at 08:04 PM..
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