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DJOstrichHead 03-15-2008 12:11 PM

Day One on my first tank
I have a 29 g soon-to-be FOWLR tank and just proud to finally start my own thread about my own tank. I have 36 lbs of LR and that is one of the bases for a question i had about filtration. First off, the guy said that my tank wouldn't need to cycle at all because the LR was in a tank with lots of other fish for many weeks so its cured. I brought it home and immediately put it in the water with my tank so do i really not need to cycle?

Also he recommended using the live rock as my only filtration system, with maybe a skimmer. I know this is the Berlin system style but how effective is that?

heres the tank

Cody 03-15-2008 12:15 PM

Every Tank has to cycle. Even if the rock is cured, you will have to cycle. It will take 3 or 4 weeks, minimum. Do you plan on having FOWLR, FO, or Reef?

You are right about the filtration. As long as you do water chnges every week and provide proper water movement, filtration isnt needed. As you said, LR and LS is the main filtration. I'm not saying that is good though. Sumps/Fuges will help tremenously, or a good HOB like an Aquaclear 110.

MattD 03-17-2008 12:55 PM


Originally Posted by Cody
Every Tank has to cycle. Even if the rock is cured, you will have to cycle. It will take 3 or 4 weeks, minimum. Do you plan on having FOWLR, FO, or Reef?

Well, it won't be FO, he's already purchased the live rock.

It's either going to be a reef tank, or a FOWLR. Either one is fine, but if you have decent lighting, FOWLR is pretty much pointless because eventually you'll want to try out corals - temptation is too great with sessile inverts. They are almost easier to take care of than fish, all that's really needed are good lights and excellent water quality - the water quality will come with time.

I recommend purchasing some sort of skimmer or HoB fuge to assist with the water stability in a tank that size, it can truly make the difference between a great looking SW tank and a disastrous attempt. I wish you good luck, I will be watching this thread closely.

btw that looks like a 29 long, am I correct? This is an excellent choice, since many SW fish are rather active and really do appreciate/prefer horizontal swimming space.

DJOstrichHead 03-17-2008 08:37 PM

After being concerned with my bacterial health (see thread in emergency section), i've gone out and bought the API master test kit..

Heres my water parameters
Temp 75

Ammonia- 3.0ish ppm
Nitrite- very low maybe 0 ppm
Nitrate 0-1 ppm


the shrimp i put in there on day one is very bloated now and looks like its falling apart. So now im not so concerned about my cycle just gotta wait it out now.

thanks for all the help so far.

Cody 03-17-2008 08:57 PM

I defiantely wouldn't have added any fish, nonetheless a shrimp. Shrimps are very partial to water quaility, and most never survive very long in "bad" tank (bad as in high water params).

Matt, I should have caught that. Too used to asking all three systems. :roll:

DJOstrichHead 03-17-2008 11:09 PM

o sorry to not make that clear. its a dead uncooked, unseasoned shrimp from the store.

I thought that was a much more humane and conscientious way to kick-start the cycle as opposed to getting a damsel or something.

Cody 03-18-2008 12:00 AM

Oh, thanks for clearing that up.

Yes, that is a very smart way to cycle. A lot of people use that method as well. The only downside is that your tank will probably begin to smell.

MattD 03-18-2008 02:01 AM

With LR, you don't need to add anything for the cycle to begin. By putting a raw prawn in, you may have inadvertently killed off any hitchhikers like micro brittle starfish and valuable copepods/amphipods with the ammonia it has created.

Often times during transport of the LR, there is die off on the rock that begins the cycle in the tank. You'd see ammonia spikes and nitrates regardless of whether or not you put something in the tank to cycle with.

DJOstrichHead 03-18-2008 09:29 AM

i put the shrimp in because i was concerned my bacteria level was very low. On day 2 of the cycle (before the shrimp) my heater malfunctioned and my water temp went up to 95 F. So i figured anything good i had in there was dead anyways. Hell, i thought id killed all the bacteria so i wanted to see if my tank was cycling before waiting 3 weeks and nothing happens

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