Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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-   -   brackish to marine? (http://www.tropicalfishkeeping.com/beginner-saltwater-aquariums/brackish-marine-19154/)

Aquarius Keeper 11-12-2008 05:46 PM

brackish to marine?
 
I'm totally new to the salt-water thing.

I have two brackish tanks - one is a 15g that has been cycling forever while I wait for my LFS to cough up a baby F8 puffer fish. He's having no luck and I'm sick of having this empty aquarium on my desk, and then just now I thought -

Say, would it be possible to go full marine with this little tank? Just, you know, slowly up the salinity over the next week so the bacteria don't get hit too hard, and then buy some saltwater fish?

It's an eclipse top/bio-wheel aquarium. Like I said, I'm totally new to this. Is this feasible or does it involve buying all sorts of expensive equipment that I don't know about?

Thanks,

Jonathan

Aquarius Keeper 11-12-2008 07:57 PM

Since posting I've done some more research, but I'm still curious.

Is it possible to have a small salt water tank using a standard filter and maybe a little live rock? Something simple mind you - no fancy corals or fish, maybe just a few clowns? Essentially a brackish/tidal tank but with full marine salinity? I feel like I've seen this done...

I don't have the money or the time to do anything elaborate at this juncture.

By the way, what is it about salt water/ SW fish that makes standard filtration for the same amount of fresh water not effective?

Thanks,

Jonathan

Kellsindell 11-12-2008 08:05 PM

the tank should be fine with SW fish in them. Just take the bio-wheel out and add about 20lbs of live rock. Just don't get a pufferfish (you can still get the figure8 and put it in there because they are brackish), because they get way too big to be in a tank that small, but as long as you're not getting corals that should be fine with what you have already. If you do want corals then you'll need good lighting roughly 3watts per gallon(wpg) for the easiest corals see http://www.fishforum.com/coral-reef/...imation-19113/ if you do want corals, or are considering, if not then just remember to clean that filter daily or everyother day(depending on bio-load) and it'll be ok.

Kellsindell 11-12-2008 08:07 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Aquarius Keeper (Post 151969)
Since posting I've done some more research, but I'm still curious.

Is it possible to have a small salt water tank using a standard filter and maybe a little live rock? Something simple mind you - no fancy corals or fish, maybe just a few clowns? Essentially a brackish/tidal tank but with full marine salinity? I feel like I've seen this done...

I don't have the money or the time to do anything elaborate at this juncture.

By the way, what is it about salt water/ SW fish that makes standard filtration for the same amount of fresh water not effective?

Thanks,

Jonathan

The clowns would be ok and no mor then 2 of the same breed... and i have no i dea why, it may be because the water is a bit thicker or maybe the colors of SW fish effect it because they're so pretty :lol: jk jk. Seriously though, no idea.

Aquarius Keeper 11-12-2008 11:42 PM

Clean the filter EVERY DAY!?

I mean, I don't have a problem with that personally (well maybe a little bit ...), but I travel a lot, and getting someone to come over and clean a filter every day is not that easy!

I don't get it - why is it that you can have 5 3" fish in a cycled freshwater tank and only clean the filter a couple times a month ... but if you change it to 5 3" fish in a saltwater tank, you have to clean it every day??

Really I want to know - I'm not being obstinate - It looks like I'm actually going to go through with this...!

Jonathan

onefish2fish 11-12-2008 11:55 PM

freshwater and saltwater are two completely different things.

generally speaking, freshwater filters are to house benifical bacteria and keep the water from being stagnent. I personally only clean a hang on back filter when it overflows (you'd know what im talking about when it happens)

as for salt water, i recommend NO filter, why? because it traps poop which becomes a nitrate factory. in saltwater systems nitrates are bad (as well as fresh in dangerous amounts) but with live rock and live sand, possibly a sump w/ protien skimmer and cheato algae in it, along with water changes weekly obtaining 0 nitrates should not be a difficult task.

im unsure of the size of tank your planning on using, but generally its easier to go larger (except more expensive) as water conditions will be more stable. having good circulation and enough established live rock should be good enough filtration.

you CANNOT house as many fish in saltwater tanks because of many reasons. territories, oxygen content isnt as great as freshwater, space (alot is taken from the live rock) compatibility and so forth.

PLEASE do more research before spending your hard earned money. it will save the lives of the fish as well as the hole in your wallet, not to mention the headache that comes with it.

Kellsindell 11-13-2008 09:09 AM

I have kept a few fish in a 25g with live rock and a filter for about 2years, but the filter was for a 65g and it worked nicely. it's possible but only if you are willing to keep up with it.

Aquarius Keeper 11-13-2008 11:56 AM

Thanks for the advice, I appreciate it.

So you're saying that while low level nitrates are okay in FW, in saltwater the have to be 0 ppm?? How come?

It's a 15 gallon and it's been cycling for over a month ... will all that bacteria translate at all into the SW as I raise the salinity, or am I basically starting over no matter what?

Also, how many pounds of live rock would be appropriate for this kind of 15g setup?

Kellsindell 11-13-2008 02:57 PM

You may lose all the bacteria, i can't say for sure or you may lose some of it. i would just go with it'll be a fresh cycle just to be on the safe side.

In SW our test kits read 0ppm but they are actually more then that. they don't read absolute zero for ammonia PO3 or nitrite NO3 or nitrite NO4( i think that's a bit backward:shock:). If you have more then 0 then it'll be harmful to the fish but also you'll have green hair algae grow along with other things in the tank and it'll look ugly.

The general rule of thumb is 2lbs per gallon, but you'd be ok with more or less like 20 or 25lbs

Aquarius Keeper 11-13-2008 03:11 PM

Well, I understand about ammonia and nitrite, but I still don't understand why FW aquariums can tolerate 10-40 ppm nitrate bit saltwater tanks can't tolerate any??

Mind you I'm not trying to keep corals here...


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