11-26-2009, 11:10 AM
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Originally Posted by onefish2fish
you say you want to start a reef tank but then you say you went ahead and added a clownfish, which indicates you already started. i could be wrong but my gut tells me your using aquarium salt and not a marine brand salt which needs to be pre-mixed atleast 24 hours in advance and then measured with a refractometer or at the very least a hydrometer however i always suggest the refractometer because it is much more accurate and not much more money if you look around. ive seen them on ebay cheap. you cant skip pre-mixing salt without running into problems before you even start. honestly i feel the best bet for the clown, atleast for the time being, return it to the store you purchased it from. if the tank previously was freshwater and "mature and cycled" adding salt doesnt convert it into a marine enviroment. you are going to want to start with an empty tank, reverse osmosis water or atleast distilled water, a marine salt, a small powerhead, 10 or 15 pounds of live rock, and either a less then 1'' sandbed or in between 4'' - 6'' as any other depth will cause problems down the road. i personally am not a fan of crushed coral or gravel in a marine tank as the large cracks allow food and detritus to settle and get trapped, breaking down, decreasing your water quality and raising your nitrates and phosphates. i personally like the 4'' sand bed because anaerobic areas where denitrifying bacteria can breakdown nitrates into harmless nitrogen gas. HOB filters, canister filters, even wet/dry filters, any filter sponges, un-cleaned filter socks, or anything that can collect debris, detritus, un-eaten food will quickly degrade the water quality in a saltwater tank, esp. one of this size. This is a big difference in filtration on a freshwater tank. In saltwater you want to keep these things in the water column long enough for fish/corals to eat, a protien skimmer to remove, or a water change performed. It is possible to use a "freshwater filter" but i dont suggest doing so, or at the very least keeping it clean frequently.
since you say you want a reef, the lighting you have now isnt going to be able to support corals. i suggest reading and asking as many questions that you can for awhile, which will better prepare you for what your looking for as well as allow you to save some more funds to support this. i must say i admire and respect your interest in fish, let alone the marine hobby. remember good things will come with patience.
Thanks for the advice OF2F, all right on he money.
Don't worry, the tank doesn't exist. I was actually just joking about a bit, making a bit of a point. Though as wake pointed out, the people I'm trying to communicate with will never read this (or more to the point understand what's being conveyed).