Originally Posted by sergiotami
Just wanted to see what other members use pics, why, pluses or minuses to their systems....
I'm resetting mine up, first attempt didnt go too well, fish died within 24 hours and I want to make sure I get it right this time...
I use a 38 gallon tank. I have a slight sprinkling of aragonite on the bottom, several pieces of decorative coral, some tufa rock, and a large PVC pipe. The aquarium is aquascapped to provide sufficient hiding places for the fish to feel secure, but plenty of swimming room so that I can observe the fish behavior.
I use a 38 gallon tank because many of the fish I am buying are already 4-5'' or more in size. I also plan to purchase some fish in groups, such as Anthias, and need plenty of space in Q. All water flows thru a protein skimmer, and then enters a chamber of biomedia for biological breakdown of any organic waste not removed by the skimmer.
I do not utilize any medications in my Q tank. This is why I am not concerned with using a bare bottom tank. If I ever need medication (which is never), I will siphon out the aragonite. But I am very careful in selecting healthy fish, so it is exceedingly rare that any disease presents itself in the Q.
I feed several times daily, and always leave algae sheets for the fish to graze on. My #1 goal is to booste the fish's immunity and get it acclimated to its new diet and new feeding routine that comes with life in captivity. I am a big believer in garlic enhanced foods to help the fish boost its immunity and prepare it for the difficult transition to an established display with a pecking order.
I do not acclimate my fish. (Not a typo) I have experimented with many acclimation techniques over the years and I have found that my fish repond better if I completely skip acclimation. I keep my Q tank at 1.017, and I simply drain the water out of the transport bag into the sink, and then gently submerse the bag and fish into the aquarium water. I have been doing this for over 10 years without a single fish showing any signs of stress related to not acclimating.
After 10 to 14 days in the Q, if the fish is not showing any signs of illness, I begin to raise the salinity with 10% daily water changes. I find that drops in salinity do not harm fish, but rapid increases in salinity are stressful. For this reason I raise the Q tank salinity to 1.024 prior to moving the fish to the display.
I think most people misunderstand the purpose of Quarantine tanks, or perhaps my purpose is different. I do not belive a Q tank is a place to treat for disease. I select healthy fish before purchase, only after watching the fish for a period of 3 or 4 separate visits to the LFS. I pay attention to the other fish in the same system at the LFS, and avoid purchasing ANY fish from any system wtih an infected or unhealthly fish. I am extremely picky about the fish I buy. For this reason, I believe the Q tank is a place for fish to adjust to life in captivity. It allows them a period of free time, away from the rigors of a community tank. And, if for some reason I have not done my due dilligence in selecting a good fish, it saves the fish in my display from possible infection.