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.