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.Newman.

Newman's Picotope

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.Newman.   

Newman's 3 Gallon Pico



Started Feb 5th 2010

Taken Down May 2012

The Tank

  • 3 Gallon JBJ Picotope
  • Koralia Nano Powerhead
  • AC 70 Fuge Mod (Chemi-pure, Floss, Chaeto)
  • DIY LED Fixture. 3 Blue Crees + 3 White Crees.
  • Iceprobe Chiller
  • 69 gph Rio 50 Pump
  • Modded Coralife 36W (w/ moonlight)

 

 

Inverts

  • Cerith Snails
  • 1 Astrea Snail
  • 1 Derasa Clam
  • 1 Anemone Porcelain Crab
  • 1 Blood Fire Shrimp
  • 1 Super Tongan Nassarius Snail
  • 2 Astrea Snails
  • 1 Nerite Snail

  • 1 Blue-leg Hermit Crab

  • 2 Emerald Mythrax Crabs

  • Green Porcelain Crabs

 

Coral Inverts

  • Green Striped Mushroom
  • Green Star Polyps
  • Zoas
  • Palythoa
  • Blastomussa
  • Montipora
  • Birdsnest
  • Pocillopora
  • Millepora
  • Porites

 

Camera

  • Nikon Coolpix 4600

 

Video:

 

Current FTS:

DSCN0597.jpg

Edited by .Newman.
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.Newman.   

Taken Down after 2 years and 3 months

________________________________________________________________________________

 

 

Background info on Coralife Fixture I will be using once livestock starts building:

 

  • 1x Dual Daylight 6,700K/10,000K bulb (Current USA)
  • 1x Dual Actinic 420/460nm bulb (Current USA)
  • White Moonlight (Current USA)

goldifhs060.jpg

goldifhs061.jpg

 

Credit goes to some awesome guides on this site :)

Let\'s not forget El Fabuloso\'s AC 70 fuge guide that I also referenced.

Edited by .Newman.

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i would personally let it sit a month before worrying about anything. also if your getting too much flow in the front and pushing the sand then cut the tab off on your AC. it will allow you to turn the flow down a tad more. since you have the power head in there, you should be getting enough turbulant flow. the AC just adds surface aggitation......along with filtering af course.

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I would think that you having an indication of nitrate in your system is a sign of some cycling activity. It's possible that you had cured rock so the die off was minimal and you never saw a spike in ammonia or nitrite. Did you add live sand? That would also speed the process of cycling. I've had my tank set up for about 11 days now and I'm just starting to see a diatom bloom and green algae growth. I would re-test for a few more days to see if your results are consistent or try a different test kit just to be on the safe side and if your results are the same then maybe try adding a small clean up crew and see if they impact your bio-load.

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.Newman.   

@ badfish: I cut off that tab back when I made the fuge, thanks for the tip :) That pic is what the lowest setting on the AC does to my sand. if it was on full, or half flow then there would be NO sand at the front lol! Still a bit puzzled about the sand being pushed back but I'm kinda growing to like the sloped look ;)

 

@ prtrini01: I was thinking that too...Here is what I did-

1. added SW and ran for a day.

2.added live rock on second day.

3.let it run for 3 days and tested to find nothing but nitrates.

4. after a week with only live rock in there I added my live sand and expected a spike of something.

5. after 4 days the live sand settled and I was able to get the above readings. still nothing but an slight increase of nitrates...WEIRD!

 

I was actually thinking of giving this thing until the 20th to show me an ammonia spike or something (I set it up on the 6th) but If you feel that I should give it a month instead of 2 weeks, then maybe I should.

If it remained stable like this, then I was originally planning on adding a hermit and 3 snails as the clean up crew on the 20th but...

 

Another questions though, if I do let it run for a month, what would supply ammonia into the system? wouldn't the nitrifying bacteria die off from no source by then? (this is why I kinda wanted the crab+snails)

 

Another thing is that I do not see any diatom bloom or any brown algae on the glass...I do not run the light at all so maybe thats why I haven't gotten it yet? Since there's no algae in there when I (hypothetically ) ad my snails+crab then I supposed I would feed them on dried seaweed for a while...

 

Another Question: If I see my nitrates go up to 20 ppm, do you guys advise me to do a small water change to lower them, or do you think that I should leave the nitrates there to fee the anaerobic bacteria?

 

What can you guys advise for me to do?

I really appreciate all this help :D

Edited by .Newman.

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probably want to start running your light on a normal cycle so any photosynthetic HH don't just die. Then you'll see the algal blooms and coraline start to come in. you could start putting in some of your CUC too.

 

And keep testing parameters.

Edited by Markushka

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.Newman.   

really? I though cycling without a light would be better... and I don't think I have any photo-hitchhikers but I'll put the stock lamp on for 6 hours if that will help...

 

If you think that I should start adding the CUC, then would 1 dwarf hermit, 2 Nassarius Snails, and 1 Cerith Snail be OK to introduce at once? I will probably get them on the 20th if my parameters stay stable...

 

Thanks for the feedback :) And what about my water change/nitrate question?

Edited by .Newman.

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.Newman.   

Replaced my rather large float sensor seen in the pic above with a smaller sensor and a snail guard. Now I'll be ready for the snails next week!

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.Newman.   

In terms of CUC stocking, does this sound good?

2x Nassarius Snails

1x Blue-legged Hermit Crab

1 Cerith Snail

 

I also intend to add 1 Peppermint shrimp to the tank if my aiptasia reappears (manually removed them) but the shrimp will get added after the snails and crab...

 

So any suggestions, what to steer clear of? is the shrimp idea a bad one? should I be looking at other types of snails? Any suggestions guys, Really, I NEED them lol!

Thank you all so much!

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Aqualara   

It's kind of cool that we started our tanks around the same time :) I'll be keeping an eye on yours! I also have a lot of the same questions as you, so this is a very helpful thread. Great start!

Edited by Aqualara

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.Newman.   

Thanks! New tank projects are always so much fun arent they? :haha:

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Aqualara   

That emoticon is hilarious!!! Hilarious because that's exactly how I feel!! I'm really excited. :D

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.Newman.   

Finally some cycling action!

Today's readings:

 

Temperature-80F

Specific Gravity-1.024

pH-8.3

Ammonia-0

NO2- 0.20ppm

NO3- 15ppm

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Thanks! New tank projects are always so much fun arent they? :haha:

 

Glad to have you in the contest. We are pretty laid back so I knew we would figure something out. It will be nice once we are a few months into this and everyone's tank starts to blossom.

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Hey there, Time for my opinion. Please remember that is all that it is. Everything you see is an opinion and there are 15 ways to achieve the same end result. This is based on my own personal experiences.

 

First, I was serious with what I said in the Methodology thread. Easy as can be, take a bucket and drain the 2.5-3 gal of water out. Place a cup, take a pic, put water back. It will be ok. To keep from disturbing the sand too much, go to the kitchen and get a plastic lid from a bowl or container. Make sure it fits in the tank and place it in the bottom of the tank and pour the water on that. This will minimize the sand storm.

 

Now, for the tank. Turn your lights on. Its a reef tank isn't it? Reef tanks need light. Start up a normal light cycle. If you want a short light cycle to start, thats fine, but you should have a cycle of some sorts. Judging from what you posted, you didn't get a cycle and probably won't. I would guess you got cured live rock and aren't getting the die off. Good.

 

If your params stay good, go get the crew this weekend. It will be ok. I have started a reef tank in under 2 hours. NOT recommended I will add, but possible, especially if you are willing to take a few chances and deal with some algae blooms along the way. I did mine as I got a good deal on some live rock and there were a few hitchikers I was trying to save. Yes, I still have that mushroom and it has a baby now. Woo Hoo.

 

CUC, I am not really big on them so I can't answer your specific questions there. As for the Pep shrimp. He WILL take care of any aptasia you have. Its like crack for mine. I went to a LFS and got a finger leather that had a bunch of aptasia on it. I told the wife, I would put it in and watch it. A day or two and its still there, I will pull it out and take the leather off the rock and trash the rock. NOT, my shrimp went straight to the rock and didn't leave it all night. Not a sign one of aptasia since. That rock had like 7-8 of them too.

 

Don't worry so much, this really isn't so hard of a hobby. Most make it out to be harder than it has to be. Just take your time and enjoy it. Once you get the shrimp, it will need need to be feed. This will also help the cycle along, ensuring you get a cycle. Easy on the food, they will always act like they are hungry. Don't give in to their begging. Starving for a day or two will not kill them. It happens all the time on the reef. Good luck and ask any questions you have. We are all here to help. Mark

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.Newman.   

That's some great info that I can use, thank you so much!

I was hoping since it got accepted, that I will be able to avoid the draining of the tank...hoping the empty tank shot i submitted will be enough :)

 

I got a tiny hint of nitrite yesterday (0.20) but it's 0 again today so I am really planning on getting the snails and the crab this weekend!

 

For feeding the Peppermint shrimp I have Omega One shrimpo pellets(meant for my corydoras) and I also have New Life Spectrum (Comunity fish formula) from my FW planted tanks...are any of those foods good for the shrimp?

The Peppermint shrimp will have to wait until I'm sure that everything stays balanced with the base crew. Plus I tried to pick out the aiptasia with my aquatic tongs/forceps and they seem to not be coming back.

Yes I did research aiptaisia and know that they regrow from the base if cut off, but as long as I can keep them in check like this until I get the Pep shrimp in a few weeks, I think I'll be fine :)

 

And yes I have set my stock light for 6 hours a day starting a few days ago.

 

Anything else I should know?

Edited by .Newman.

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That's some great info that I can use, thank you so much!

I was hoping since it got accepted, that I will be able to avoid the draining of the tank...hoping the empty tank shot i submitted will be enough :)

 

I got a tiny hint of nitrite yesterday (0.20) but it's 0 again today so I am really planning on getting the snails and the crab this weekend!

 

For feeding the Peppermint shrimp I have Omega One shrimpo pellets(meant for my corydoras) and I also have New Life Spectrum (Comunity fish formula) from my FW planted tanks...are any of those foods good for the shrimp?

The Peppermint shrimp will have to wait until I'm sure that everything stays balanced with the base crew. Plus I tried to pick out the aiptasia with my aquatic tongs/forceps and they seem to not be coming back.

Yes I did research aiptaisia and know that they regrow from the base if cut off, but as long as I can keep them in check like this until I get the Pep shrimp in a few weeks, I think I'll be fine :)

 

And yes I have set my stock light for 6 hours a day starting a few days ago.

 

Anything else I should know?

 

Not sure on those particular foods, mine gets fed frozen brine shrimp and he loves it. All I have to do is put it anywhere in the water, and he smells it and he comes running. I really think you would be fine with a shrimp now, but that is up to you. Having patience now will be good asset later. My brother rants all the time about me going too fast. Yea, yea, I'm listening :rolleyes: See example in my previous post. I have been doing saltwater on and off for a few years now. Mark

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fishieCJ   

You should definately get your CUC this weekend, to deal with any alae you may have since you started a noramal light cycle. You did start a normal light cycle didnt you?

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It's great to see you joined the contest! I just started my first SW tank (with lots of help) in December as a project for my classroom; so I'm right there with you as a novice reefer. You've had some great questions and reading your thread has answered some of mine. I will say there are certainly mixed opinions about peppermint shrimp. I also had some aptasia, got a peppermint shrimp last week and now there's no more aptasia. Some reefers have had them eat their feather dusters and corals, I'm keeping my fingers crossed, but so far so good. It will be a little bit before my contest tank is ready :angry: , but I keep being told to have patience....seems to be a theme here<_< Anyway, good luck. I can't wait to see how your tank develops!

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.Newman.   

Thanks everyone for encouragement and the advice!

Tank tested out like this today:

Temperature- 80F

pH- 8.3

Specific Gravity- 1.023

Ammonia- 0

NO2- 0

NO3- 10ppm

Alkalinity- 9dKH

 

So I am going to change a little of the water tonight and get the animals tomorrow :)

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.Newman.   

OK, I got the base of my CUC today. Unfortunately the employees at my LFS fail and instead of two small Nassarius snails they fished me out one Super Tongan Nassarius...it's pretty huge and it's brobably going to be the biggest animal in my aquarium lol!

On the contrary I got two Cerith snails because they were so tiny at the store...as they grow I *may* need to get rid of one but for now they both stay.

And instead of the dwarf zebra hermit that I asked for I got a blue-legged hermit by mistake...

But w/e I'm really happy with everything despite it not going all according to plan.

I also got Chaetomorpha algae and chemi-pure elite and threw those in the filter.

Finally installed the Coralife over the tank and damn it looks bright!

 

Will update with pics when I get my camera back...

Edited by .Newman.

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.Newman.   

Here are some pics of the base CUC:

 

I got 2 baby Cerith snails that look like this

goldifhs083.jpg

 

One Super Tongan Nassarius

goldifhs082.jpg

 

Also got one Blue-leg Hermit:

goldifhs085.jpg

 

I tried to lure the carnivores out today with shrimp pellets but only the Nassarius responded...

goldifhs084.jpg

 

I'm going to see how the week goes with these guys and maybe I can get a mushroom in here next week...Wish me luck! :)

Edited by .Newman.

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.Newman.   

I got a pic with the moonlight and the fuge setup, but not much else ;)

There is also the updated FTS on the first post.

goldifhs081.jpg

goldifhs080.jpg

Edited by .Newman.

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