Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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B Castle 03-05-2009 03:31 PM

LR from ocean, considered "cured"?
Hi all,
My Brother-in-law lives in Key West and is a divemaster. When he found out I was starting a SW tank, he offered to go out and get me however much live rock I want. He will wrap it in clean, wet towels and pack in a styrofoam cooler to ship overnight to me.

In this scenario, would I treat the rock as cured or uncured?

FWIW, it will be collected responsibly (not taking from living reef; he takes reef preservation seriously) and several miles from land so the possibility of pollution from close by human sources is not a problem.

My 75g tank is at the end of the first week of cycling and presently contains about 20# cured rock and 20# live sand over a crushed coral base, if it matters.

Thanks in advance for any advice!

SKAustin 03-05-2009 08:12 PM

The curing process refers to the natural cleansing process of die-off. If the rock is packaged, and shipped, then once it arrives into your posession, it would need to be cured. If your tank is in the Cycling stages, you can cure the rock in the tank. The curing process will also feed the nitrogen cycle.

There is however, the concerns with predatory wildlife being introduced into your system. Generally, Live Rock suppliers go through a process where the rock is kept out of the water for several days, being periodically misted to keep the rock live, but it makes the rock less inhabitable for pests like aptasia, mantis shrimp, flatworms ect.

B Castle 03-05-2009 08:52 PM

I'm aware of what curing does, but I didn't know if there would be any appreciable die-off considering when I get the rock it will have been out of the ocean less than 24 hours. I had tentatively planned to "quarantine" it for a few days in a QT to observe any unwanted guests and to get an idea of die-off.

I am able to duplicate the misting process if I need to. If it helps keep pests out of the rock, I'm fine with going to the trouble. So far every piece of store-bought live rock I've gotten has had SOMETHING in it that I didn't want... seems like it will be what I'm already used to even if it is pest-inhabited.

SKAustin 03-05-2009 10:44 PM

24 hours out of water, the rock will suffer some die off. As far as pests are concerned, there are a good number of things that can be much more detrimental to your system and difficult to get rid of. The QT is definitely a good idea. As far as the misting goes, If you can, I would recommend you give it a try. It might save you some headaches in the future.

I apologize if I appeared to belittle your knowledge. Until I know the experience of a member, I find it helpful to assume they know nothing.

Best of luck with the free rock.

B Castle 03-06-2009 12:17 AM


Originally Posted by SKAustin (Post 177883)
I apologize if I appeared to belittle your knowledge. Until I know the experience of a member, I find it helpful to assume they know nothing.

No apology necessary at all. I don't have much experience (though I am learning as fast as I can). It's just that I thought I had done a poor job of getting to the main point of my question.

I'm trying not to get overloaded with the stuff I have to learn, but it's tough. I had thought I was just about through spending on "major" items with this tank, but now I am learning that there's no such thing as a cheap protein skimmer that actually works, so I'm feeling despondent over that looming expense.

Thanks for the advice!

onefish2fish 03-06-2009 01:54 AM

welcome to the forum.

a few things, isnt harvesting live rock illegal regardless of location without permit? im not sure but i would check on that.
just curious as to what size tank your planning on setting up, what corals you wish to keep, what fish, and any other details..
a good idea is to take the time to do more research while your saving funds. as you have found, saltwater tanks are not cheap which should be some extra encouragement to do things right the first time around.

as for skimmers, try to find reviews online. as you've stated alot arnt very effective.
for a basic read on saltwater:
and heres a good article on sumps:
research shouldnt end here, its just a starting point.

looking forward to seeing you around on the forums. please keep us updated.

B Castle 03-10-2009 04:04 PM

He's checking on the legality for me. Certainly can't afford trouble. Also, he's very reef conservation-oriented. If he can do it, it will definitely be above-board. I may cure it in my soon-to-be sump before it goes in the main tank.

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