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Using live sand straight from the Ocean


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#26
Acid Lamp

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Acid Lamp - I appreciate the positive support and personal experience. Truly helped.

Any the suggestions/things to look for?


Happy to help.

Keep a close eye on all your water parameters for at least two weeks, particularly so if you've recently added live rock.

If you are planning on corals, keep an eye on the calcium levels, I always have issues with mine and have to add in. NSW seems to do fine with other trace elements, so if you have the time to collect it, that's great. I usually do a 50/50 mix of NSW and regular old tap water mixed with instant ocean. Haven't had any problems yet.

Critters can take a few weeks to rear their ugly heads, and sometimes you won't see them until you begin providing a food source. Be aware that you may have all sorts of interesting and potentially nasty things in your substrate. A good way to check for this is to toss a small amount of food in at different stages of the build and see what appears from the sand bed to collect it. In Florida you can expect lots of 'pods, sand fleas, and the occasional crab or shrimp fry to appear as if by magic. Aiptasia haven't been a major issue for me, but I've heard horror stories from others, so keep an eye out.

Lastly, keep a watchful eye on your livestock for parasites once you've added them to the system. Just like the microfauna, you may not see them until you've provided them with a host.

Remember: Products like RO water, mixes, prepared substrates and the like are all about giving the reefer safety and control over their investment. That is NOT a bad thing, but neither is it necessary to maintaining a beautiful tank. make your investments where it will provide the largest pay off for you personally and you will enjoy this hobby FAR more.

Edited by Acid Lamp, 10 August 2011 - 03:25 AM.


#27
Builder Anthony

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See any critters in there?
Anthonys 5 Gallon
Pictures
http://www.nano-reef...howtopic=267313

#28
iball1804

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Nope but I have seen some little worms (about a millimeter long) squirming around the water column.

Acid Lamp - I actually enjoy the sense of insecurity and uncertainty (only while there's nothing in the tank :P) who knows what'll happen! If everything works out, hallelujah! xD. Thanks for the input. Have you had good results using ocean sand?

Edited by iball1804, 10 August 2011 - 02:51 PM.


#29
Deep Stops

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Where in Florida did you get the sand from? Beach sediment composition varies greatly throughout the state. For example the sand in the Florida Keys is almost purely carbonate whereas the sand off SE FL is much higher in silicates. The gulf coast has fine grained siliceous sediment along with crushed shells. Some sand would be better and cleaner than others. Also, beaches are like filters for the many toxic chemicals in the seawater. All the runoff from nearby developments, roads, backyards, etc. is in the beach sand.

The only sand I've seen in Florida that I would use in an aquarium is in the Keys. It has good grain size and composition for a reef aquarium.

Good luck.

#30
jeff@zina.com

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Oil floats, don't be a smartass.

Processed oil floats. Not all components of crude do.

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#31
jeff@zina.com

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Correct me if I'm wrong, but aren't a lot of crushed coral substrates just dried beach sand from Florida?

Not exactly. Most is mined, not retrieved from the beach. Same sand, just hasn't been wet for a few million years. The rest is brought up from offshore, as live sand, usually from depths of 50-100 feet and miles off shore. None is from a beach. the beaches are too valuable in Florida.

By the way, the beaches in the Keys, with the exception of Bahia Honda, are all trucked in, not natural sand.

Jeff

#32
iball1804

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Following through on this.

I'm using this sand in my latest pico. I rinsed it until the water was clear.

#33
colbertbr

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Oil floats, don't be a smartass. I'm just saying that if you get it from near the shore, you don't know whats in it. farther out is safer.


Actually beofre calling someone a smartass you should know that the BP oil was treated with tons of sinking agents and dispersents that oil is in all levels of the wtater column. Just some information for you.

#34
gbose

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I look forward to hearing how this works out. Please keep posting and tell us your experiences!