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victor1061 04-18-2013 07:50 AM

Starting my new 45 gallon FOWLR.
Hi All,

Started with my new 45 gallon FOWLR tank . Live rock (44 lb) has been curing for almost 2 weeks now in a separate 20 gallon with my Weipro 2011 skimmer and powerhead and heater.
Readings in live rock tank
Specific gravity:1.025-1.027
I'm using NSW for the curing tank.

In the main 45 gallon tank I have added crushed coral sand(22 pound) and wavemaker waiting to add saltwater (Instant Ocean mix) to the tank and start the cycling this friday.

Any suggestions for filters as I'm really confused. I don't want to use canister or trickle filter or wet dry filter for this setup as I have heard about these nitrate factories. And for a sump I'm not having the proper space requirements to setup one.


wake49 04-18-2013 09:06 AM

Hello and welcome to Tropical Fish Keeping!

I do not personally use a filter on my saltwater tank. The Live Rock, Live Sand and Protein Skimmer are enough in my tank to forego water changes. Canister and HOB filters are actually detrimental to Marine tanks. The end result in a canister filter or HOB filter is nitrates. We want to reduce nitrates in a marine system to naturally zero. Increased nitrates can have an adverse effect on Alkalinity and Calcium, and can stress the life in the tank.

We can acheive zero nitrates in a marine system by utilizing Live Rock (1-1/2 lbs per gallon), a Deep Sand Bed (about 4-6") and a protein skimmer. Crushed Coral will not work in this situation, as you need a finer particulate size, such as Oolite sand. The deep sand bed forms an anaerobic layer of bacteria that converts Nitrates to Nitorgen Gas, which leaves the system naturally. The Live Rock utilizes the same bacteria in the deep-seeded area of the rock. These two, in conjunction with a protein skimmer are called the Berlin Method and help reduce nitrates in a marine system to near zero.

victor1061 04-18-2013 01:10 PM

Thanks for the reply so I believe the live rock I have and I might add more fine sand to the current setup will do for the filtration?
I'm looking forward to how it progresses.

wake49 04-18-2013 03:23 PM


Originally Posted by victor1061 (Post 1793609)
Thanks for the reply so I believe the live rock I have and I might add more fine sand to the current setup will do for the filtration?
I'm looking forward to how it progresses.

I would get rid of the crushed coral altogether and add about 4-6" of oolite sand.

victor1061 04-20-2013 11:21 PM

3 Attachment(s)
Here are some of the pics after adding my substrate which i finally decided crushed coral and oolite sand on top. The cured live rocks aren't arranged yet i just tossed them in .

Thinking of a hardscape.Here are some pics.

wake49 04-21-2013 06:41 AM

Looking good!
Posted via Mobile Device

victor1061 04-21-2013 11:49 PM

Thanks wake. :)

victor1061 05-20-2013 02:43 AM

After setting my tank and almost now 2.5 months have passed and the parameters had all stabalised with 0 ammonia,nitrite and nitrate, phosphate 0.3. I added last week two clarkii clown fish brought from my LFS and a week prior I had added 4 turbo and 4 nerite snails for the cleaning up of green algae popping up around the tank. Also added few yellow polyps during this period.

But suddenly after a week the clowns started behaing very lethargic and stopped eating one of them went and started hiding under the live rocks I had setup and few hours later it started breathing heavily and tilted to one side and died. I didn't know what was wrong, I checked for the parameters and it was fine. But when I brought them both together I did everything properly from acclimcation (for about 1 1/2hrs) and checked the specific gravity which was 1.023 and ph 8.4.

I didn't understand what could have gone wrong so suddenly. I was really heart broken as this was my first fish and don'e want to loose my other clown too. Apart from him I have one silver moony who seems pretty normal in there.

Could you guys help me in understanding the problem.

wake49 05-20-2013 06:15 AM

What are your parameters as of this morning?

victor1061 05-20-2013 07:05 AM

Today morning I checked the parameters and it was:
Nitrite-0, Nitrate-0.3

I did 20-30 % water this morning and checked and found these parameters.

What could have been wrong?


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