Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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Twitch 03-08-2008 01:45 PM

What kind of light will I need
I am a beginner at this and I am setting up a reef tank. So far I have 8lbs of live rock, live sand, a few hermits and 2 snails. (The inverts are in there at the advice of the LFS to help start the cycling of the tank.)

They said I should get my light as soon as possible. Right now I have a compact florescent sitting on top of the tank to allow for some light. If I plan on having corals and inverts and maybe one or two fish, then what kind of lighting will I need? The one they were wanting to sell me is $130 and he said its good for most things I would want to keep.

I don't really know what I want to keep because I don't know whats out there and don't know anything's requirements. I have a 20L with a Millennium 3000 filter. So yea, if I wanted to keep corals, inverts, and one or two fish, what would be a good light to have? And I have no idea what those abreviations are that stand for the different kinds of coral, so if someone could explain those as well.

Cody 03-08-2008 02:18 PM

Here is a very good light. I think you would want the 30" light.

It would be 130W, so about 6.5W per gallon. That should work for most corals.

I don't think you should have added the inverts. You shouldn't add any livestock untill the cycle is done.

Twitch 03-08-2008 02:22 PM

I know that now but they seem to be doing fine. I will keep an eye on them. Thanks for the light recommendation. Would it be possible to explain what the abbreviations mean for the different kinds of corals and explain kinds of coral there are and what I could keep with a light like that?

Cody 03-08-2008 02:26 PM


130W is 130 watts.

Most corals live on 4-7 watts of lighting. This would include most softies; zoas, mushrooms, polyps, etc. The more lighting, the better. You want to make sure you have 50/50 bulbs (1 daylight, 1 actinic) for best growth. The Sattelite fixture will help you out nicely.

Here is a light I am buying. It is 96W for my 10 gallon tank.

Twitch 03-08-2008 02:39 PM

One of the corals I want is called pulsing coral or something like that. It is a soft coral right? Will that be ok in a 20L tank with that light?

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