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Fazulka

Very good advice has been offered here! The only thing I would add is this:

 

Find a local reef club -

 

People that live near you are going to the same stores as you and will have similar experiences.

 

Often others are willing to help if you have problem.

 

You can get often get free corals, algea, and or rocks just asking or waiting and watching. For example, many people throw out TONS of xenia and chaeto because it grows too fast.

 

Corals are much cheaper from other people than from the LFS. If you but a frag from a colony that someone grew from a frag then you know it can grow well in a tank!

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revaltion131
Very good advice has been offered here! The only thing I would add is this:

 

Find a local reef club -

 

People that live near you are going to the same stores as you and will have similar experiences.

 

Often others are willing to help if you have problem.

 

You can get often get free corals, algea, and or rocks just asking or waiting and watching. For example, many people throw out TONS of xenia and chaeto because it grows too fast.

 

Corals are much cheaper from other people than from the LFS. If you but a frag from a colony that someone grew from a frag then you know it can grow well in a tank!

 

I agree with all of this. If you're lucky, the LFSes included in the club's 'sponsors' will be very helpful as well. There are two good ones around here and they are temporarily housing the fish of people in the area that don't have power right now, helping them keep the tanks airated and warm, and so on.

 

Here's some things to have or do if you run out of power:

 

1.) Car or Lawnmower batteries and power converters that you can rig to run pumps, airstones, heaters, etc.

2.) Several thick blankets (or good outdoor sleeping bags) to wrap the tank in to keep it warm.

3.) If you have a grill, use it to warm water and you can slowly pour that water into your tank to keep the temp up.

4.) Do small, < 10%, water changes at least once a day, if you can, but do it even more slowly than usual. Because your water will probably have far less flow than usual and may not be going through the filtration systems, you are building up polutants, especially with hormones and such given off by stressed livestock, that is not getting removed through the normal means. You need to maintain the best water quality you can. You should do a true 10% water change at least once within the next week after the power comes back on.

 

If you use an airstone, like we ended up doing (was far more energy-efficient than any of my pumps), keep in mind that it does create a mini, poor skimmer. Remember that the bubbles created in the skimmer's column carry proteins to the surface. The bubbles from an airstone will do the same thing, but to a lesser extent. Just make sure to 'skim' the surface of the water with a cup every now and then, where the foam is collecting on the surface from the airstone(s), and scoop some of that water out. (Thanks very much to a knowledgeable LFS owner for this info)

 

The other thing I would be concerned with is the back-chambers of your tank. It will be just as stagnant as the front, so if you have chaeto, LRR, etc, in the back, you should test for die-off in the back. You don't want to turn the return pump back on and have it pump a whole ton of ammonia and nitrites into the main tank you've worked so hard to keep alive. Even if everything is fine, I might siphon the water out of the back just to be sure.

 

Hope this is helpful!

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tropicalkaren

Let your tank mature for at least two months after the cycle if you want it to be more stable. I have done this with 7 of my tanks and I haven't had a crash yet.

 

Does this mean just have live rock for two months after cycling? No snails or anything? Thanks!

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sidviciousw

Reef Keeping is patience, but if it is cycled properly you can start to add stuff

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lakshwadeep
Reef Keeping is patience, but if it is cycled properly you can start to add stuff, patiently

 

:happy: FTFY

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TimothyUhl

It's a good thread. It'd be better if some of the banter, unanswered questions and debate were moved elsewhere though--including this post requesting to do so. :)

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speedbump

has anyone brought up personal safety?

 

salt water + electricity + you = bad day.

 

a few things that may seem obvious...

 

electrocution protection

- be observant when messing in the water. make sure you are not dripping on or near electrical equipment.

- never touch electrical equipment with wet hands, especially salt water.

- when equipment instructions indicate the use of a GFI outlet, use one. its prolly a good idea to use one regardless.

- make sure electrical equipment is protected from leaks or spills, mainly in cabinets containing refugiums, ATO tanks, or other water holding equipment and/or plumbing.

 

fire safety

- don't use extension cords as a form of permanent power supply.

- use surge protected power strip and not multi outlet blocks or "cobra heads".

- do not plug a power strip into another power strip.

 

use common sense and be safe. ;)

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Byron
- when equipment instructions indicate the use of a GFI outlet, use one.

+10

 

Use one even if it doesn't say, they are cheap and serve a great purpose.

Edited by Byron

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Nor_Cal_Cuber

I'm sure this has been mentioned but a UPS power supply is your best bet. I run one on each tank.

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aretoorow

1. If you let your Live Rock dry out, you've just made Dead Rock.

2. I'm sorry, but did you just say you shook your tank to make sure the rocks are stable?

3. That's a pretty Copperband Butterfly you have in your 2 week old 10 gallon tank. FAIL.

4. You used Morton's sea salt because you ran out of Instant Ocean? Go do a water change.

5. The LFS that sold you that cleaner wrasse is probably laughing at you right now.

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Nylaspop

but remember MH wont work with GFI because of the spark needed to get the light going, it will cause the GFI to trip...

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vangvace
but remember MH wont work with GFI because of the spark needed to get the light going, it will cause the GFI to trip...

 

this post is 100% inaccurate if your lighting is set up properly and you are not exceeding the circuit's rating.

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lakshwadeep

Here's a good checklist to go over when you are thinking about posting a new topic.

 

  • Don't post ambiguous, short messages about a fish problem with no pictures and expect to get any meaningful advice.
  • Go ahead and ignore replying posts that give advice you don't want to follow, can't afford or don't want to accept, but be prepared for possible continuing problems.
  • Don't wait too long before posting. Problem reports that begin with "I lost three fish today, two yesterday and one the day before that…." are probably not going to end well for the rest of the fish (no matter what advice you are given) now that its day four.
  • Check the answers you get from strangers on the Internet with information from published sources. "Fish Doctorz" advice may sound really good, but he could be some junior high kid with his first tank just "chillaxin" and tossing out random bits of information on the forum because it makes him feel important.
  • Check the FAQ! You most likely are not the first, (or even the fiftieth) person to post a question about HLLE - research the forum before posting commonly asked questions.

 

This list, and more help on finding the information you need, can be found here:

http://www.advancedaquarist.com/2008/12/review2

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vangvace
This is what your water's surface should look like more or less.

24ou6xc.jpg

 

TY to Neanderthalman for the picture from his build thread.

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egloskerry
I'm sure this has been mentioned but a UPS power supply is your best bet. I run one on each tank.
I thought about getting one, but then I thought, why? I hooked my tank up to my 875VA UPS which is able to run my 178W computer for about 17 min, and it said 45 mins or something. Is going without electricity for that long really gonna be that bad? I know it's not good, but is it worth spending $100+? And yeah, it is that expensive, because if you get a dinky little 300VA unit, it's gonna be good for maybe 10 min.

 

If anyone is going to get one anyways, though, get one of the Geek Squad ones from Best Buy when they're on sale. They're manufactured by Cyberpower, whose UPSes Best Buy also sells.

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Venoma

I'd recommend an APC back-UPS ES, actually - mostly because APC is a treat to deal with and their stuff tends to last a very long time (geek chick speaking, it's my job to know). You'll run longer if you do NOT keep your lights on the UPS - I don't know what harm a 12 hour lighting outage would do to a reef tank, but I daresay circulation and filtration are more important.

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Militant Jurist
I'd recommend an APC back-UPS ES, actually - mostly because APC is a treat to deal with and their stuff tends to last a very long time (geek chick speaking, it's my job to know). You'll run longer if you do NOT keep your lights on the UPS - I don't know what harm a 12 hour lighting outage would do to a reef tank, but I daresay circulation and filtration are more important.

 

That's a very good point. Depending on the back-up's capacity, you'll want to figure out just how much draw your equipment will have and adjust accordingly for how long you may be out for. Some circulation the whole time is better than full strength for a short bit and then nothing.

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firstchevalier

Here's a nano noob question. Someone mentioned a brown algae bloom as being the norm in a new tank. I've setup a 2.5g (third tank for me 10g 2yrs, 29g 6mnths) as my first pico tank and it's started an algae bloom. I'm not alarmed or anything but I am curious why the bloom occurs as 'normal' and what the 'best' member of the CUC is to deal with it in a pico environment?

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Codeman
Here's a nano noob question. Someone mentioned a brown algae bloom as being the norm in a new tank. I've setup a 2.5g (third tank for me 10g 2yrs, 29g 6mnths) as my first pico tank and it's started an algae bloom. I'm not alarmed or anything but I am curious why the bloom occurs as 'normal' and what the 'best' member of the CUC is to deal with it in a pico environment?

 

It's going to die off in a few days/weeks. I wouldn't worry about it much.

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firstchevalier

Thanks Codeman. I'm not worried about it at all, just curious. Knowledge is power and I'm just wondering why this 'always' happens and is viewed as normal. I'm familiar with the basics of the nitrogen cycle so is this some byproduct of a stage in that cycle or something else?

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Nuclear Fire
Keep your wife happy....buy her flowers, remember birthdays and your anniversary - and for God's sake do your share around the house. These things will come in VERY handy when you are shelling out that dough for that Beautiful Coral or LS that you just "have to have"! :P

 

Best advice EVER.

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Reef Lobster

Thanks for all the great advice everyone, I have yet to start my setup but it's very helpful to get such a wide variety of first-hand information :)

Edited by Reef Lobster

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amnesiak
8. For starting your nano a good LFS will give you the 5 to 10 gallons of water out of their main tank supply to start your tank off (It's coming out of an established tank with all of the good stuff already in it, this does help with establishing your tank) -- Seen debates about this also -- remember ... Search Read Search Read

 

Just had to say, I've been reading all aspects of this site for a week now (I'm a fast reader) and this is a fantastic idea! Thanks!

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deanmarine

Look for a good experienced and informative marine LFS. RESEARCH RESEARCH AND RESEARCH every thing you buy whethe rit be a fish, coral, shrimp, invert, equipment.

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lakshwadeep

This was also posted in the identification forum, but it is of greater use to beginners:

 

Please avoid killing or trying to fish out things that you want to identify before you get at least a rough identification. It is hard for other members to identify something that's not underwater. A picture is very important for a conclusive ID, but sometimes a very detailed description is sufficient.

 

Finally, it's kind of arrogant to ask "How do I get rid of it?" after "What is this?". Most hitchhikers are harmless. Those that are called "bad" are only considered so in our captive tanks, and many animals (such as fire worms) have previously been used as scapegoats for problems with introduced corals/fish.

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