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JLong80 08-04-2009 01:22 AM

55 gal fish list
I am currently cycling my first 55-gal s/w set-up, and I have a list of possible fishies and I figured they would probably go in the order i have them. I thought it would be a good idea to run it by everyone and see if I've got any good and/or bad ideas going on and what order they should go in.

2-bumblebee snail
1- hermit crab
1- scarlet skunk shrimp
1- blood red fire shrimp
1- red sea starfish
1- yellow clown goby
1- six-line wrasse
1- two-line monocle bream
2- cinnamon clowns
2-3 spotted cardinals
1- bicolor angel (though probably a flame or half-black since bicolors are apparently hard to keep)

I also thought about adding a heniochus black & white butterfly or a blue spotted puffer if there was room and my wife wants an anemone for the clowns which I doubt I can support and really dont feel like dealing with.

The water isn't ready yet, but it shouldn't be long.

I've got 55-gallons with 60 lbs live sand, 45 lbs live rock, (2)18" CF eclipe daylights, LED moonlighting, a 100-gal 4-stage canister filter, and an acclimation tank.

abfisher 08-04-2009 09:59 AM

Will a red sea starfish be a good fit for live rock environment?

JLong80 08-04-2009 10:07 AM

I haven't read too much about the red sea star except is that it is reef safe, but requires a well established tank. So I will probably wait a bit and add it last.

JLong80 08-04-2009 12:41 PM

Also, I'm really not sure about the inverts and if I will have a problem mixing them or how many of them I should really have.

cnmarland 08-04-2009 03:05 PM

Do you have a protein skimmer? I'd scrap the use of the canister and get a good quality protein skimmer for this tank. You can keep the canister, just remove all media and use it as extra water. You want to ensure a well seeded live rock and live sand bed of between 4 and 6".

JLong80 08-04-2009 03:26 PM

i had planned on getting a cheap skimmer because i previously thought it was just supposed to improve water clarity.. but am now looking into what i need to incorporate a better quality skimmer. I was looking at the Marineland Marine Series Advanced In-Sump Skimmers at
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but i wasnt sure how installation worked or if i needed any other equipment (like expensive pumps) before putting it in.

I had done a lot of reading on aquarium setup a few years ago and don't remember such a strong push away from canister filters. Is this method of filtration becoming so popular only recently? or was i just missing something before? its kinda annoying that i just bought this nice filter to upgrade the biowheel that i had inherited.

also, my sandbed looks pretty good, but when i took a closer look its probably about 2-3", so i guess i need another 20 lbs... it just seems by looking as though its gonna be a bit much.

Pasfur 08-04-2009 05:30 PM

I am very glad to see that canister filters are starting to get some bad press. It is about time. The reason for this move away from canisters is that they have to many negative qualities, and do very little good on a system with live rock, live sand, and a protein skimmer, which is the preferred method of maintaining a successful saltwater aquarium long term.

Very brief.... canister filter trap detritus, which breaks down into nitrate and indirectly phosphate. Additionally, these detritus particles and organic accumulation deplete carbonates from the buffer system, making alkalinity and calcium more difficult to maintain. Over the long haul, the success of your marine aquarium will depend on maintaining low Nitrates, stable alkalinity, and stable calcium levels. As such, the canister works against you, not for you.

On your fish selection, I would ditch the Six Line Wrasse. These little fish are ridiculously aggressive in smaller sized tanks, and I'm afraid it would cause some issues in a 55 gallon, especially for your Cardinals. Also, I agree that a BiColor is a bad choice, unless you can purchase one collected from Fiji.

JLong80 08-04-2009 09:42 PM

all righty then, well my next question then would be can I use my empty canister for anything other than a glorified pump and powerhead, or should I just not use it at all? also, is my 45-lbs of Fiji Standard live rock sufficient?

And as far as my fish selection, minus the wrasse and bi-color angel... is there anything else I should consider adding? am I skimping on cleaners?

mdrobc13 08-11-2009 09:37 AM


Originally Posted by JLong80 (Post 222996)
all righty then, well my next question then would be can I use my empty canister for anything other than a glorified pump and powerhead, or should I just not use it at all? also, is my 45-lbs of Fiji Standard live rock sufficient?

And as far as my fish selection, minus the wrasse and bi-color angel... is there anything else I should consider adding? am I skimping on cleaners?

I know use my three cannisters filters on my 3 tanks as glorified pumps without any media. I just filled them with some small live rock and carbon bags in 2 of them and have noted no change in fish behaviour or deaths and improved water quality in my tanks.

I think the bad press for them comes from their advertising mostly as the LFS folks (some) and online LFS sties love selling you $80-120+ price point filters vs nothing. Mine worked wonderfully for my freshwater tanks before I converted them to salt water tanks. Didn't have nary a fish death at that time but since I switched to saltwater and tried to use them and had multiple deaths over time of a year it seems..likely due to fluctuating PH, nitrates, and water quality which I am now convinced my cannisters contributed to. Now they're removed from the equation and just big water circulatros...I think things are improved and water testing/quality more stable. So its worth a try I'd say. Alot of folks agree on this forum and others I've seen.

Good luck...

abfisher 08-11-2009 02:07 PM

Recommended List of Beginner Saltwater Fish

Damsel fish
Australian Orangetail Damselfish
Australian Tasmanian Devil
Blue Damselfish
Blue Green Chromis
Black and Gold Chromis
Domino Damselfish
Electric Blue Damselfish
Jewel Damselfish
Neon Velvet Damselfish
Three Stripe Damselfish

Basslets, Dottybacks, Pseudochromis
Royal Gramma Basslet
Chalk Basslet
Black Cap Basslet
Tobacco Basslet
Swissguard Basslet
Orchid Dottyback
Neon Dottyback
Magenta Pseudochromis
Bicolor Psudochromis
Diadema Pseudochromis

Blennies, Gobies
Bicolor Blenny
Barnacle Blenny
Bullet Goby
Diamond Watchman Goby
Engineer Goby
Sailfin/Algae Blenny
Green Clown Goby
Midas Blenny
Orange Striped Goby
Orange Firefish Goby

Randall's Goby
Red Lip Algae Blenny
Scissortail Goby
Tiger Watchman Goby
Tank Raised Neon Goby
Tank Raised Gold Stripe Neon Goby
Tank Raised Red Head Goby
Twinspot Goby
Yellow Clown Goby
Pink & Blue Striped Goby

Pink & Blue Watchman

I would recommend Tank raised)
Tank Raised Tomato Clowns
Tank Raised
Australian Black Percula's
Tank Raised Gold Band Maroon
Tank Raised White Band Maroon
Tank Raised Ocellaris
Tank Raised True Percula's

Cardinal Fish
Tank Raised Bangai Cardinals
Pajama Cardinal
Flame Cardinal

Hawk Fish
Flame Hawk
Freckled Hawk
Longnose Hawk
Pixie Hawk
Spotted Hawk

Angel Fish
Pygmy Angel
Coral Beauty Angel

Surgeon fish
Yellow Tang
Foxface Lo

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