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New to saltwater need advice

This is a discussion on New to saltwater need advice within the Beginner Saltwater Aquariums forums, part of the Saltwater Fish and Coral Reef Tanks category; --> Are you using all API tests for your Calcium and pH and dKH? I have had better luck with Salifert for dKH and Calcium, ...

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New to saltwater need advice
Old 11-20-2009, 07:09 AM   #11
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Are you using all API tests for your Calcium and pH and dKH? I have had better luck with Salifert for dKH and Calcium, and I use a different test kit for pH, but I can never remember the name. I will check when I get home.
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Old 11-20-2009, 08:44 AM   #12
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This is what I use for pH: Elos Aqua Kit. I think they are the easiest to read for pH tests.
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Old 11-29-2009, 05:37 PM   #13
I have the API pH test and it's great.
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Old 11-30-2009, 05:18 AM   #14
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elos test kits are just as good as saliferts IMO.
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Old 11-30-2009, 02:46 PM   #15
I'd also like to say how happy I am that somebody with something between their ears has taken this tank over.

The fact that your testing your water right off the bat installs confidence.

Is there any media in the canister filter? To reduce nitrates for the time being you could clean the media in tank water daily. I would not recommend any for of mechanical filtration in a saltwater tank, but removing it in one hit would more than likely lead to a complete system crash.

Look at some of the build threads to get an idea of how to go about setting up a nice stable marine aquarium. Virtually everyone on the forum uses the same methodology.

With marines, your aiming to build an eco system that isn't particularly dependent on your intervention (unlike freshwater). You want live rock for biological filtration and a clean up crew for detritus and algae removal.
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Old 11-30-2009, 07:04 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by jeaninel View Post
Pasfur, I did pick up the Kent Marine SuperBuffer DKH and it appears it's helped raise the Ph and KH a bit. I have not picked up the liquid calcium yet. Will I still need it with such a high reading?
Alkalinity is always dropping in a marine system, requiring the use of a buffer and periodic water change to help keep it "high". Using both alkalinity and calcium tests together allow you to predict with a greater degree of accuracy when you need to change water, as opposed to simply adding a buffer and hoping for the best.

I was somewhat inspired by your question yesterday when I posted this:
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Old 12-02-2009, 12:46 PM   #17
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i just read it, it was awesome. i will print it out.
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Old 12-03-2009, 10:03 PM   #18
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I've read that post also and it has some great info. Very helpful.

In the cannister filter there are some foam blocks in the pre-filter. I rinse these in used tank water when I do water changes but I'll start rinsing them out every day. All 3 trays are filled with carbon, not the granulated kind, but what looks like Kent Reef Carbon (little "sticks"). Also, I just discovered a bag of this carbon in the supplies in the cabinet. I need to start changing out the carbon as I don't know how old the stuff is that's in the filter. I'll change out 1 tray at a time since there is probably BB established in there.

Also, I added some snails and a Peppermint shrimp a couple weeks ago. The Turbo snails (Trochus) are amazing and have done an awesome job of cleaning up the rocks which were covered in brown algae. I have 2 Turbo snails, 2 Bumblebee snails and 1 Peppermint shrimp. Is this ok for a CUC?

Eventually I want to get some more live rock. I would also like a protein skimmer in place of the cannister filter but finances right now are really tight. Will the cannister filled with carbon be ok for such a small tank for now?

Pasfur, I saw your post about that deal on the protein skimmer for small tanks. I wonder how long that sale will go for. With X-mas coming up and the fact that I have recently seperated from my husband it will be awhile before I can budget it in.

Thanks for all your helpful suggestions guys!
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Old 12-04-2009, 02:50 AM   #19
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if memory serves right i think there have been issues with bumblebee snails. i cant remember if they eat coral polyps or other snails/meaty foods. im leaning towards them being canivores but it could be both?
i suggest more snails of different sorts. astrea turbos, ceriths, nerites, stomatellas, nassarious.. a few of each will do in a 20 gallon. you dont need to run out and get them all at once, they can be added at any time and remember more can always be added easier then it would be to try and return some or sell them.
i just looked back and saw the fish that came with the tank. i wish you were closer and i could have bought it from you. how about that damsel? have you seen issue?

speaking outloud here ( esp as i know budget is tight ) but another 20 gallon as a sump with a deep sand bed and some chaeto algae would make a nice setup. even better finding a used 40 breeder as the display and using the 20 as the sump. the dementions of the 40 breeder make it great for a saltwater tank and at the same time it isnt that large of an upgrade.
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Old 12-04-2009, 02:02 PM   #20
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I had a few of the Astrea snails also. However, they seem to tend to fall off the rocks and then they can't right themselves and die if I don't notice them on their sides. Maybe I'll try a few more.

The Bumblebees I've read are omnivore and will burrow through the sand eating sand dwelling worms and also are great at getting the algae in small crevices in the rock because of their small size. I haven't had any issues between them and the Turbos.

The damsels are doing fine. The bigger Blue Damsel sometimes tends to chase the smaller Yellowtail but it's usually a short chase. Other then that, they get along fine with the other fish.

You know, I do have in the back of my mind that I would like to keep an eye out for a bit larger SW tank as I really don't care for the dimensions of this one. It's a 20 extra high and I'd rather have a tank with more length to it. But, I'm probably not going to consider that route until maybe next year sometime. Besides, I have my hands full now with the 8 tanks I already have. LOL
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