Got my 20g set up - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 10 Old 09-22-2008, 11:04 PM Thread Starter
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Got my 20g set up

As some of you may have heard, I was setting up a 20 gallon FOWLR a while ago.
Here are some pix!
an FTS
my tomato clown

I will post a few more pix once I have the energy to upload them.

The tomato clown is working out alot better than I thought. I've heard they grow to 5", so I won't be adding any more fish/I might have to upgrade to a 40g. The bioload is fine, and he seems to have enough swim room for now. I do think I should add some more rock though, as I currently only have 13-14 lbs.

Apparently, under 15 watts of t8 light, a brown button polyp sprouted on a piece of live rock. Yes, I've identified it, and it's definitly a button polyp so please don't suggest that it could be an aptaisia like members did on other forums, lol.

Hours after I bought some live rock, I was about to throw away the plastic bags, when I noticed a snail in the bottom of the empty bag without any water-just drops and humidity. It lived!

I also saw this pair of claws sticking out from behind a piece of live rock, and apparently, a free shrimp was included! My coral banded shrimp will come out and grab nori out of my hands, mainly just to hold onto it in his sleep/while he crawls throughout the tank.
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post #2 of 10 Old 09-23-2008, 05:43 AM
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post #3 of 10 Old 09-23-2008, 06:31 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Pasfur
You may want to put a strainer on that power head intake.
I have been meaning to get a strainer, as I know that some sort of sponge-strainer would not only strain, but add to the biological filter system.
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post #4 of 10 Old 09-24-2008, 10:05 AM
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Preemptive strike before Pasfur gets to it: a sponge strainer is not what you want in a reef tank. It will house aerobic bacteria, which will become a nitrate factory. I think the regular plastic strainer should be sufficient.

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post #5 of 10 Old 09-25-2008, 09:16 AM Thread Starter
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I am wanting to turn my 20g FOWLR into a reef. Since the electric bill is already very high, I am leaning towards just lowlight corals for now. Lol, the dang economy. Do you have any opinions on this retrofit light?
For corals, I am wanting some kind of soft coral that closely resembles an anemone, such as a torch coral or frogspawn.

Also, I had this wierd dream last night so I thought I might as well share it. I was on this airplane to the coast, and I think there was a reef near where we stayed. Strangely enough, my lfs was within walking distance, so I went and got a mature longnose hawkfish and a yellow tang to growout in a 2.5g. The hawkfish, of course, lived okay in 2.5 gallons of space and so did the yellow tang. Actually, I think I had some kind of purple tang too, but he was like a quiet shadow swimming in the back of the tank. A day or two later, I noticed that the yellow tang was unable to graze and get the food it needed/he was swimming in circles, so I looked around quickly for something bigger to put it in. I looked around, and found a 5g and a 10g laying around. I began pouring saltwater into the 5g, but then I knew those wouldn't be big enough for the yellow tang to last in. I then saw my 20g with my tomato clown in it, so I carried the 2.5g over to it and began the acclimation process which seemed to have been fastforwarded or something. Apparently, there was not enough water in the 2.5g left since I poured some into the 5g, so the yellow tang's 'snout' was exposed to air. He didn't flop or anything. I released him into the 20g at the same time as I did with the other fish, the purple tang just swimming past like a shadow un-noticed while the other fish were broadly visible. The yellow tang was just floating upright for about 5 seconds, when I finally realized he was dead. His body slowly eneloped in this dark brownish color as his eyes rolled up, while he slowly sank to the bottom of the tank where the filter intake forced him behind the rocks. I spent about an hour or two thinking about that whole experience and how I had killed a yellow tang. I glanced back at the 2.5g, and there was another 2.5g that was 'just there' with a juvenile emperor angel in it. Come to think of it, I think this all took place at a public aquarium I usually go to, but the tanks I was talking about were mine.
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post #6 of 10 Old 10-03-2008, 09:53 AM Thread Starter
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Well, there's a chance I will be upgrading my tank to 50 or possibly even 100 gallons. What is the lowest possible wattage of heater I can get? Cost is not an issue, the energy bill is.
I will be looking around at hardware stores for a bulk price on tufa rock that I will be seeding.
Can I get a 1/2" thick sheet of acrylic, heat it up with a candle or something, and bend it to a half circle, get another identical sheet, and do the same, then melt the two bend sheets together or whatever that process is called, silicone the cylinder on top of a 1/2" sheet of acrylic, and have the tank be 100g saltwater? Or can I just get one sheet of 1/2" acrylic, heat it up/bend it into a complete circle, then make one seam by melting both ends together? Is any kind of rim necessary?
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post #7 of 10 Old 10-03-2008, 11:07 AM
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This site has a great how-to DIY on acrylic seaming and bending:

Nothing good happens fast in an Aquarium

My 30 Gallon Long Marine Tank
My son's 20 gallon FW Community
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post #8 of 10 Old 10-03-2008, 02:42 PM
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I think you'd be much better off with a more powerful heater than getting a weaker one. Sure, a higher wattage heater uses more power while it's on, but it also would need to be on less frequently. A weak heater will be running constantly and won't give you a nice temperature distribution.

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post #9 of 10 Old 10-03-2008, 02:44 PM
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that's a very nice looking fish. :)
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post #10 of 10 Old 10-03-2008, 10:18 PM Thread Starter
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Well, now I just need to find a space on the floor that can support the tank. I'd say I have done-decided to make it a 100g tank, so I will probably go insane and get my acrylic sheets alot thicker than they need to be-better than having the tank implode! :D
As for stock, I think I will be getting a yellow tang. The tomato clown is for sure going in, and if he was not going in, I'd get a lionfish. Along with the yellow tang, could I get a convict tang and a second tomato clown? a pair of tomato clowns + a convict tang & a yellow tang = 26" of fish in 100 gallons of water.
I never understood why I even bother to set up such a tank. It seems that my fascination in reef fish isn't in this, just my desire to set up a tank that will draw guests' attention and fascinate them.
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