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  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    8

    New Aquarium...just turned a little bit cloudy

    Hi everyone,

    This is my first post here. Well I took the plunge and started a 30 Gallon Saltwater aquarium.

    Here is my setup so far:

    pH: 8.2
    Salinity: 1.0215
    Temp: 79

    For filters I have a Emperor Bio Wheel 280 and an Aqua Teck Model 20/40 that came with the aquarium.

    I have two small clown fish. They seemed to adjust VERY well, quickly staking out their territory.

    Now after feeding them twice yesterday (enough for 3-4 minutes of eating) I woke up this morning to see the aquarium is a bit cloudy. The aquarium has been running for 3 days now and the fish just got added yesterday.

    Should I change out some of the water? Will the filters clear the tank on their own? Should I try and get some "Good" bacteria from the pet store?

    Any suggestions would be MOST helpful. I want this to be a success.

    Thanks so much!!!!!!!

    G5Man
    Ottawa, Canada

  2. #2
    Member jsimpson2148's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Posts
    50
    Hi G5man, and welcome.

    I know what it is like to get some really bad advice from the LFS, so I hope people won't be hard on you. There are alot of experts here (i'm not one of them) who will tell you exactly what you need to do, but for now the best advice I can give to is to attempt to return your clowns to the LFS. Salt water setups take alot of time and patience, and proper planning. It takes 4-6 weeks for a tank to cycle, before you should even consider adding fish.

    The clowns are going to die if you don't get them out of there. Your tank is probaby going through an amonia spike. They are tough fish, but they cannot withstand the toxicity.

    Also, your setup sounds less than Ideal. I am afraid for now you will be restricted to a fish only tank. I made a similar mistake when buying my hardware. If I could do it over, I would have waited, read lots and took plenty of advice from this group, then decided.

    You have stumbled upon a great find on the internet, aquaria.ca. This is an extremely helpful bunch, and they will dispense great advice freely. Hopefully One Salty Dog will chime in, he always has a helpful comment.

  3. #3
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    8

    Ammonia, Nitrite and Nitrate readings

    Hey thanks so much for the very quick reply.

    I just wanted to add my most current readings.

    Ammonia is ~ 0ppm
    Nitrite is >0ppm < 0.25 ppm
    Nitarte is > 0ppm < 5ppm

    It would seem that my ammonia spike has not yet occcured. The question I had though was if I returned the fish how would it be possible for the tank to go through its cycling and building up of proper bacteria? Don't they need the fish waste to grow properly?

    I know what you mean about the less than ideal setup. After getting it setup I kicked myself that we didn't get the 55 G or even larger. I guess I wanted to make sure I could do this before laying out even more money for the begger setup.....but I can already tell it is inevitable :-)

    Anyway...I will talk to the LFS guy and see what he has to say.

    Thanks so much!

    G5Man
    Regards,

    G5Man
    Ottawa, Ontario

  4. #4
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    590
    G5Man, can I ask where you are getting your equipment and advice from. A 30g tank is not that bad, I have seen some very impressive 30g. I am no pro either but it sounds like you are over feeding. You did not mention any rock or substrate? Bio wheels are not very popular in salt water, I would keep the filter but toss the wheel. What kind of water are you using? SG sounds a little on the low side but still acceptable. Most keep SG at 1.025, what are you using to chek it? Do you have any pics, they help to visualise.

  5. #5
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    8

    Pics of my aquarium

    Okay I snapped three pics of the aquarium. You will see a shot of the filters, the hydrometer, and the front of the aquarium.

    It seems my salinity is dropping too. It looks like I will have to bring that up soon.

    As for the base it is small natural coloured stones. You may be able to see them in the pics I attach.

    Thanks so much for the help.
    Regards,

    G5Man
    Ottawa, Ontario

  6. #6
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    8

    Website with more pics

    Hi again...I quickly threw together a website with slightly larger images.

    http://homepage.mac.com/jason.matte/PhotoAlbum15.html

    Thanks again for the warm welcome here.

    Regards,

    G5Man
    Ottawa, Ontario

  7. #7
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    590
    Well it looks alot like a FW tank. Let me guess Big Al's. IMO, you need to get some LR in there and to save on coin, you can mix LR with BR. Getting the clowns out would be a good Idea. Is that wood in the front of the tufa base rock. Wood is no good in a sw tank. That colourful rock might not be a good idea either. Instead of babling, I will let you read, this is a good place to start. Hopefully someone with more exp. will jump in.

  8. #8
    Senior Member putz28's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    287

    start over

    G5Man,
    welcome to marine aquaria...sort of.

    You seem to have a long way to go. The LFS that started you on the path sent you in the wrong direction. You haven't invested too much money thus far so you won't have long to correct it, but it will cost you.

    Clowns are hardy fish, they should survive a while in that environment. Without a cleanup crew and some liverock in there I'm not sure how long it will take for your tank to take a turn for the worst, but I image it will be less than a month.

    Go to the library today, there are a dozen books you can borrow to read up on what you need to do. Even Al's sells a good beginners book, head over there and drop 20 on it.

    Time to start over.
    125G in wall
    2 x 250 hqi
    4 x 4' actinics
    tunze wavemaker & 6060
    2 x 1200 maxi's
    quiet one 3000

    ...just started of course



    One day my daughter asked me for Nemo. Here we are thousands later and I'm just getting started.

  9. #9
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    8

    Going to Al's....

    Yeah...I plan to head over to Al's today.

    I'll plan to drop some coin on Live Rock and a clean up crew.

    Would adding this help to turn things around? or should it be established first?

    Thanks....
    Regards,

    G5Man
    Ottawa, Ontario

  10. #10
    Moderator cres's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    1,963
    The normal pace of things is frustratingly slow, but, looks more like this:

    Set up the tank with water, pump for circulation, and sand bed (some more advanced setups won't have a sandbed). The sandbed can be a variety of material, but, aragonite or crushed coral is best.

    Add the salt. Add about 80% of what is needed (about 1/2 cup per gallon is typical). Then let it run for a day. Check salinity. Add as required, letting it run for another day.

    After about a week of this, making sure the salinity is correct and stable, you can add some live rock. You can get it from an established tank or from the LFS (cured rock), but, you must keep it warm and moist during, preferably brief, transport. You should expect to pay $8-$12 per pound for cured live rock. You can get deals on live rock (see the classifieds here). The rule of thumb here is 1-1.5 pounds of rock per gallon. Less is okay too, but, it is the main filter, so, less rock means less filtration.

    You can also use some "base rock". This is really just some live rock that has dried out and is dead now. This will become live rock over 3-6 months and can save you mon

    You can also order non-cured live rock. It is typically shipped from the source to the vendor and sold directly to the customer without being cured. This can be the best bet, but does take longer to cure. (cured rock is pretty much ready). Non-cured rock, if good quality, will be teeming with life and will often come with some "free" coral that will simply start growing out of the rock.

    Then you let the rock sit in the running tank for a few weeks. Stuff will start to grow and the tank will start getting "dirty". Algae will start to grow. Diatoms may form on the sand, glass and rocks.

    Now you should test the waters. If you added non-cured live rock, watch for the ammonia to rise and fall, the nitrite to rise and fall and the nitrate to start rising. You may need to do water changes to keep the nitrate down. This is the time requiring most patients. This can take 4-6 weeks.

    Now is it time to add some cleaner crew. Some people don't like hermit crabs, others love them. Personally, I have a mix of blue legged hermit crabs and scarlet legged hermit crabs. Also add some snails. You must aclimate any new addition to the tank.

    Now wait some more. Keeping an eye on the water parameters and the critters. If the tank keeps getting dirtier you should add more cleaner crew. The rule of thumb here is one snail or crab per gallon of water.

    If the crabs and snails survive, you can now consider adding the first fish. Don't go the route of buying a "cycling fish". Just buy the cheapest of the fish you will want to keep.

    Then you are well on your way, but, you will be 2-3 months into the process.
    Sarchasm: The gulf between the author of sarcastic wit and the person who doesn't get it.

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