Hey all still learning what I can so I can switch my 40 gallon tank to a reef tank. As you may know I already have a post asking more about lighting, and in that post I was recommended to get a skimmer. Instead of asking about skimmers in my already question heavy post about lighting I made one here.
So here is what my tank is going to be like (most likely) 3' wide 20" tall and 1' tall (at work now and dimensions from memory this IS a 39 gallon tank so ignore my dimensions if they're incorrect)
My filtration is an EHUM canister filter rated to 66 gallon tanks (17 gallon overkill already)
and after more research will chose probably 1 or 2 small power heads
Will use 40lbs live sand, 20lbs live rock, I want alot of inverts and SOME fish (about 3 or so)
What I do think I want so far:
watchman goby+pistol shrimp pair
blue legged hermits
a cleaner shrimp (probabally a skunk cleaner)
several electric scallops (about 3)
1 solitary firefish
LOTS of coral, will have about 7watts per gallon
What I would enjoy, but need to do more research
a breeding pair of clownfish and a host anemone
I clearly don't have many aspirations for fish and am dedicating the tank to the inverts that I have always wanted and had such a limited selection with freshwater. I would like more fish if you have some cool ideas for me.
I had it explained to me that skimmers take out the waste produced by fish and is used to max out your bioload easily and safely. BUT with a low fish load it is a more natural (and in some others as well as my own opinion) better to use the natural filteration of the live rock/sand. This eliminates most suppliments that you need to make to replace the trace elements that protine skimmers remove, because they are allowed to remain in the tank until used, and are replaced automatically with water changes anyway.
So do I need a skimmer in a 40 gallon tank with minimal fish but much invertabrate life? What benefits do skimmers provide that would make me want one one anyway? And do I have enough sand and rock to easily get away without one?