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Mr.Smith

Fluval 5 gallon stocking

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Mr.Smith

I am hoping to get into the saltwater side of things in the near future after doing freshwater for quite a while. Unfortunately, I am limited to the small Fluval Evo 5 gallon for the foreseeable future, so I came here to try and make the most of it. I really have my heart set on a shrimp/goby pair and I would like to look into what else would be a good addition (shrimp, crabs, snails, corals?). Are there any modifications I should make to my tank before starting? What else should I know about a nano tank that isn't obvious? (parameter fluctuations, topping off)

 

Thanks in advance! 🙂

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seabass

:welcome: to Nano-Reef.com.

 

According to lgreen's Ultimate Guide: 

and most other sources, you should stick with one of the smaller gobies for such a small tank.

 

Besides fish selection, there are a few other inverts that wouldn't be appropriate (like larger anemones and starfish).  However, you can still build yourself a great little reef tank with a five gallon tank.

 

26 minutes ago, Mr.Smith said:

What else should I know about a nano tank that isn't obvious?

You freshwater experience will help you somewhat.  However, depending on your livestock choices, it can be more demanding.  Equipment, like lighting and pumps, are typically stronger than you might be used to.

 

32 minutes ago, Mr.Smith said:

parameter fluctuations, topping off

Daily top offs with distilled water, to make up for evaporation, are necessary.  An automatic top off system can automate this for you.  This is almost a must if you are away for a few days.

 

People with small tanks often rely on large percentage weekly water changes to keep parameters in check.  However, dosing is a possibility, should SPS corals be on your stocking list.

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Mr.Smith

@seabass Thanks so much for the comprehensive answer! I noticed there was thread for the IM 10 gallon that listed mods and other things. I searched for one pertaining to the Fluval Evo but could not find one. Do you know of one or another user that could help me out? (sorry, I'm new)

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Mr.Smith

@seabass Thanks for being so helpful! I can't say the same about most people on reddit haha

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Firefish15

Do you have any lighting, heating, or filtration ideas yet?

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Mr.Smith

@Firefish15 I am going to stick with stock lighting and filtration for the moment as I will not be getting into corals until I work full time in the summer. I've seen many people talk about the Cobalt 25w or 50w which I will eventually purchase, but for the moment I will buy the aqueon 50w preset heater since it is a nice, affordable option (from what I have read). Feel free to correct me on that haha

 

I would love to hear suggestions on modifications that I could/should make to the tank since I will have it for a while!

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Clown79

Preset heaters often over heat. They stay on constantly 

 

I have the aqueon 10w preset. Even on a timer only coming on 3 times a day my tank would reach 84 and drop to 76.

 

The only preset heater I have used that works properly is the tetra which is set at no higher than 78. 

In my 3g ot keeps the tank at 76, in my 1g 77.

 

 

As for fish. Stick with small species. A goby pistol will work.

 

A tailspot blenny would work, clown goby.

 

I have a bicolor blenny in my 5.5g

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Mr.Smith

@Clown79 Alright, I will keep that in mind, thank you.

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Firefish15
22 hours ago, Mr.Smith said:

I've seen many people talk about the Cobalt 25w or 50w which I will eventually purchase, but for the moment I will buy the aqueon 50w preset heater since it is a nice, affordable option (from what I have read).

Just bite the bullet and get the Cobalt NeoTherm. I've got the 75w in my 10g reef, and the 25w in a 5g freshwater. Been working out super great on both, very minimal temperature swings. Since you haven't gotten anything alive yet, just keep saving until you can get good quality equipment. That way, when you do get to livestock, you won't have to choose between cool critters or equipment upgrades. Just my two cents.

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Mr.Smith
1 hour ago, Firefish15 said:

Just bite the bullet and get the Cobalt NeoTherm. 

Which one would be best, 25W or 50W? Also, I saw people saying that putting the heater in with the return pump without puncturing a couple holes in the tubing will lead to little circulation of the heat. Would the Cobalt well fit in the main tank or should I do the mod and add in another powerhead?

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Firefish15

The 25w is rated for up to 6 gallons (increasing the temp by up to 11F), so my guess would be that it's fine for you. 

I mean, I generally like to try and hide as much equipment as possible. That being said, the Neotherms aren't very obtrusive. If you face the lights away from the main display area, it's mostly black and pretty thin of a heater. I'm not familiar with the Fluval Evo 5 though.

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xthunt

I've used the aqueon preset on my Fluval 5 and worked great and stayed stable for the 6 months or so until I shut it down. I put it in the chamber with the pump. Punched a few small holes in the hose to get flow in that chamber, otherwise it's a dead spot. 

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Clown79

I use an aqueon pro in my 5.5g. Temp is very stable. 

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Mr.Smith

@xthunt Do you have any other stuff you could input regarding the tank itself? I'm still new to this site and not great at navigating it. 

 

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xthunt

I made a media tray exactly like this one: 

 

 

top shelf was mechanical filter pad, middle was bag of carbon, bottom was the bag of bio media that came with the tank. Did 2-3 gallon (~50%) water changes every 2 weeks.

 

Take a small piece of black plastic and use superglue gel to cover the small hole thats on the back wall. 

 

After filling the tank, slowly take some water out until the back chamber drops in level. Then slowly add the water back until the back chamber level stops rising. Mark that spot with a sharpee or something. The back chamber water level will drop every day from evaporation, just top it off with distilled/rodi water each day to that level you marked. 

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Mr.Smith

@xthunt Thanks for all that info! What did you stock in that tank?

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xthunt

A small clownfish, tailspot blenny, trochus snail, and 2 astreae snails

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