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Hello everyone, so due to a incredibly rushed move I was forced to break down my fusion 10 and diy 25 😞 


so two days here I decided to start a new tank! There’s a lot of local stores here and I amazingly saw a 45p and just had to have it when I saw. 


Anyways the equipment is a bit bare bones


1 aquaclear 30

1 aquatop 50w

1 nanobox tide I was able to take with me

11 pounds dry LR

10 pounds live sand


ive decided to use dr Tim’s fishless cycle method and have been following that dosing with the ammonium chloride.


Until the cycle is over I only have a sponge but plan to use purigen as well. Possibly red seas supplements or some other phosphate removal to correct water parameters from SW from the store.


The next thing im thinking of is making a stand to house either a small sump to use Lily pipes to hide equipment or an ATO and reservoir, as evaporation is incredibly fast in Phoenix compared to Memphis. 


My planned inhabitants will most likely be no fish. As for corals, I’m wanting to keep a euphillia dominated tank. Possibly a couple other mushroom or lps. I’m currently looking at a large group of sexy shrimp with a couple other small critters like hermits and snails.


I am also wanting to seed the tank with copepods but unsure what cultures I should be looking at? Is there any recommendation? 


Anyways here are the pictures of the tank so far!





thank you for any comments or advice!  

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so my tests so far are, 

day 3
2ppm ammonia
.25-.5 Nitrite
dosed ammonia after test

day 6
4.0ppm ammonia
5ppm nitrite
pH 7.8
dosed no ammonia after test

day 9 (today)
ammonia .5-1ppm
nitrite 2-5ppm
nitrate 40-80ppm
pH 7.8
dosed 1/4th ammonia after test

Noticed diatoms throughout rockwork

following Dr Tim's sheet, today could've been the day to add some life, but my nitrite is too high, and so it looks like I will wait for another 24hrs to test and see if the nitrite and ammonia will 0 out. 

I am tempted to go ahead and get the shrimp for the arrival date of 4 days but I don't know if the current course the tank is cycling it will be ready? does anyone know? 

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Welcome to Phoenix!! I'm sure you are enjoying the 115 degree weather hahaha.


I would wait a few more days on the cycle, just to be safe. Kona Reef has some reef stew for sale that will really seed your tank. I think it is delivered fresh on tuesdays. Its important to get it fresh because I hear that the pods eat each other or something. 


The aquascape looks really good. It will be fun to watch this progress.

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@BaristaBob thank you! yeah, the weather here is pretty great compared to the humidity in Memphis, it's hot but doesn't feel smothering hot. at night the weather here is pretty enjoyable, and no mosquitoes like there is in Memphis!

that place looks like its on the other side of the mountain but I will definitely check it out whenever I can, I believe there's a store here that makes a reef stew as well, ocean floor I think. 


as for my tank, I 0'd out on my nitrites and ammonia like I hoped on Saturday, so that afternoon, after the major water change, I bought a nassarius snail and a red leg to add to the tank!

I also went ahead and ordered 10 sexy shrimp, so I am excited to see them get here soon!

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The mosquitos will come and go but will not get near as thick as TN. There are some periods in August-October where it's pretty miserable. Whereabouts in Phoenix are you? I'm in East Mesa.

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@xtra0t I’m a just little south of Glendale, I’m not sure the areas totally well yet! Only thing I noticed was bad was the ants, they swarm on you just for sitting on a curb standing near grass, little guys bite too!

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Also an update for the tank! My sexy shrimp have came in the mail and I’m excited! I received them this morning and I was quick to get them acclimated! The amount of bags was funny as I actually had to drain the tank a bit since it was going to flood to float them all! 



I followed my best judgement to make sure the salinity was all the same in the bags to pour and combine them all into a container too drip acclimate. 


Anyways here’s some first pics of them! will try to take better ones tomorrow!738AF908-9903-4576-90F7-8F133FA40C78.thumb.jpeg.ddaaddb44b31233cfe00620178c8d5a6.jpeg




In the last photo you can see my little hermit for size reference


I felt mildly ripped off since I bought 2 nassarious snails and trusted them to pick healthy ones, but one was already dead when I bought it. I didn’t check them until I left because I was in a rush. I know it might only be a couple dollars but it’s the principle. I felt not to bother them about this since I don’t want to come off as difficult to the store. The hermit and other nassarious is fine though! 

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Just an update, Got some corals getting acclimated and a short video of the shrimp doing the dance, 


will post the pictures of the corals later!


the video



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30 minutes ago, sapling said:

Just an update, Got some corals getting acclimated and a short video of the shrimp doing the dance, 


will post the pictures of the corals later!




You're making me want an army of them. Please stop!!! Hahaha. They look very happy 🙂 .

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30 minutes ago, BaristaBob said:

You're making me want an army of them. Please stop!!! Hahaha. They look very happy 🙂 .

If I remember correctly, I read  about them on various forums that they can be opportunistic towards sps corals and zoanthids especially.


When I had ordered them, I accepted the fact I won’t be looking to keep sps with them to chance it. 


I asked at my LFS about the reef stew you mentioned and apparently they get it from the same guy on thursdays! 

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40 minutes ago, sapling said:

If I remember correctly, I read  about them on various forums that they can be opportunistic towards sps corals and zoanthids especially

I had to remove mine for going after a birdsnest.  They are definitely cool animals though

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As promised a few pics of my corals so far, I want to take better pictures later 


a splatter hammer I believe




Here is what I believe looks like a pink frogspawn or octo to me 




lastly a teal hammer, which my LFS fragged on the spot for me which was crazy



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so far everything has been pretty good, I keep going back to do a headcount as I get so worried, but all 10 are there and looking great. For almost 2 days I kept counting only to 9 and was getting bad anxiety; turned out they really just enjoy the rockwork and definitely use the holes and undersides of the LR,


Alot of them seem very determined to huddle up under or on the bases of the euphyllias, as I’ve seen up to 4 of them on the octospawn at one point. I think so far they like the green hammer and octospawn over the smaller teal hammer. Maybe I need more corals so they all have homes?! 


One thing I’ve noticed as well is sometimes a couple will act very skittish and zoom off when I approach the tank, I’m hoping they get over that 😞 


Overall though I enjoy the tank a lot so far, reminding me of my FW RCS tank I had, but with coral


One thing i didnt mention, but some of the shrimps are extremely small, maybe 1/4th an inch, so I feel me preemptively buying a prefilter sponge for the intake was a good decision, as I’ve read from others about how their shrimp have been sucked up by HOBs or other pumps.


The one I’ve used that’s available at petco for usually 2 dollars, 


Fluval EDGE Pre-Filter Sponge https://www.amazon.com/dp/B002LL32RY/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_04tzBb6369224


A couple pics of the shrimp under the corals,501F2CBF-0563-40A9-8677-22933A36D476.thumb.jpeg.b11bc89cde8ac0ab9221fb219326cf30.jpeg

This shrimp is definitely looking camouflaged 



This one, not so much 

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Just an update of this past weekend, 


I was able to get some reef stew to pour into the tank and I’m hoping some of the copepods will colonize the tank. I know the sexy shrimp enjoyed the brine shrimp! Also my first waterchange with the shrimp in there went over easily,




Besides that I have been thinking of my stands equipment to use, considering a canister filter to use an inline heater. Only trouble is finding a heater with the appropriate wattage of 50-100w. Besides that I’m hoping it might be possible to add an inline connection with a check valve to connect an ato reservoir into the intake line of the aquarium’s canister filter. Never seen anyone do so before, does anyone have experience with that type of plumbing? I want to use the check valve so the fresh water can be pumped into the system via the canister filter line and not be seen on DT. The check valve ensures the water won’t mix. 

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9 hours ago, sapling said:

Besides that I’m hoping it might be possible to add an inline connection with a check valve to connect an ato reservoir into the intake line of the aquarium’s canister filter. Never seen anyone do so before, does anyone have experience with that type of plumbing? I want to use the check valve so the fresh water can be pumped into the system via the canister filter line and not be seen on DT. The check valve ensures the water won’t mix. 

Hmm, I think perhaps if you find a fitting that will allow you to add a 3 way connector kind of like this pvc fitting. 

 Image result for pvc pipe fitting 3 ways

But instead something that will allow you to make the output pipe have a larger diameter to account for the diameter of intake + diameter of ATO piping.

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Hello everyone just a little update  with pictures before I head to work,


heres the FTS 8/10/18 




As you can see I should consider moving some of them up now, but I’m unsure which, any suggestions? 


Besides the pic I purchased 2 frags yesterday I’m really happy to get. I tried the store, kona reef @BaristaBob mentioned and I thought the store had some great coral I immediately bought. The store was nicely kept, and had a really interesting layout and was fun to look at everything. I feel what they lacked floorspace wise they made up quality wise. 



one is a beautiful wall hammer that’s hard to describe and show the color correctly, it was orange, with green ridge. 






the other is a bright green type of hammer, 




besides that, here’s a picture of some shrimps 




they love to get on all the hammers so far

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Tank is looking great!! You should check out reef monsters. Loads of cool lps there. Also Ben Aronawitz (BSA corals) lives in the valley; best selection of corals in the Phoenix area. 


You should mount the euphylia on the rocks!! It's gonna be so awesome to see it fill in. 

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I was just at reef monster today. They took apart their display so I got a snag of zoa rock and a green birds nest for cheap. They go to Los Angeles every other week to hand pick their coral stock. I believe they’re going this Tuesday and will have new stock out on Thursday. They have a “wish list” too that you can write in what you’d like. Great selection of sps and lps but minimal softies. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

@BaristaBob I’m actually not sure where I want them all exactly but I’ve moved them today, I like how I’ve laid them out so far , but want to be sure they’re happy before I glue. 


Heres a quick iphone pic ,I just did my weekly maintenance so apologies for the cloudiness




Besides the water change and moving the coral, I’ve been working on the stand since my last post and it’s all assembled and ready to be sanded! I’m debating on how I want to do the finish. I’m also still looking into how I want to drill the holes 


A pic I had of the dry fit before pocket holes and glue



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A small update, I ordered a hydrofill ato controller, and a rio plus 600 for the pump, very excited to get it set up!


Namely because the water evaporation is crazy! In my bigger 25g it was not a severe issue due to the larger water volume helping stabilizing, but in the 45p the salinity and other parameters swings more than I prefer, 


The shrimp are all there, and they all like to gather on the rock far more now I’ve moved the coral.


In other news my nassarius and red leg hermit have both passed on. I am at a loss for the reason. But I feel the shrimp may have a role. The corals are  fine, but I saw the red leg being pulled out of its shell by multiple shrimp, as well as the nassarius being cornered before the next day an empty shell. Could this just been oppurtunstic? I’m not sure what could be the reason.



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  • 2 weeks later...


Update for today, all the shrimp are fine, usually, I won't see all of them at once, only about 8, but during a water change, they all go to the top and are easily counted. 

The ATO works fine and has been a blessing in terms of maintenance, as it's more time looking at the tank, and less time doing top offs. sometimes I get paranoid and check with my refractometer, but the salinity is fine. 

what is next to do is find a container I can use to store a few gallons of rodi at a time for top offs that will fit in the stand. 

As for the stand, I finished sanding it about a week ago, and am just waiting for it to be painted! I also added a few holes for the ato and wiring. I plan to drain the tank as much as possible during a WC to slide it over to the stand, leaving corals and shrimp in. 

I will update with pictures later, but here is a short video of one of my shrimp on a coral! 



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Wow that video is great!! What are you filming with?


I'm excited to see the stand up and running. I've pondered about making an actual stand as well to hide equipment. Who thought these little tanks needed so much haha ?‍♂️

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Thanks! I’m using a Sony A6000 using a 10mm extension tube. I was recording in 30fps though because I keeping forgetting to raise the settings to 60fps. I think you might be using the same camera if I remember your thread correctly? 





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