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Jerad81

365 Day Challenge - Jerad81's 20g Newbie Build

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Jerad81
10 hours ago, kimberbee said:

Don't forget to add the 365 day challenge tag to your thread so people tracking the entries can find it easier!!

Thanks for the reminder! I just added it.

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This guy is extra salty

Nice setup 

I’m interested in seeing what you stock it with

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Jerad81
14 hours ago, This guy is extra salty said:

Nice setup 

I’m interested in seeing what you stock it with

Thank you! I'm hoping to have a mixed reef by the end of the year. 

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Jerad81

Holy crap! I just tested my water again and after 2 weeks both my ammonia and nitrite levels came back at 0!! I guess Dr. Tim really knows his stuff! Just to be safe I added about 2ppm ammonia to it again. I  will test it again after 24 hrs and if they both show zeros I'm going to lower my heater to about 77 F (it's currently at about 83), do a water change and spend the rest of the week letting the water temperature drop and playing around with my light to get it set how I want it. My fingers are crossed I might be able to start adding life to it by next weekend fingerscrossed😃.

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Jerad81

Also, I should mention the theme for my tank will be a $45 cap on all livestock I add to my tank. I edited my original post to include this as well so people can find it easily. 

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Jerad81

Well dang. I just tested my tank after 24 hrs and the ammonia level was at about 0.6 ppm and the nitrite was still over 1 ppm. Although I do have to admit I screwed up when adding the ammonia to the tank yesterday. When adding the first drop I accidentally gave it a small squirt instead of a drop. Even though I only added 60 drops instead of the 80 it called for I believe I still added more than 2 ppm. Either way, I can't say with any confidence my tank is ready for fish yet. I figure I'll give it a couple days and test it again. When they both show zeros again I'll go through the process a third time (being much more careful when adding the ammonia). We'll see what happens throughout the week but I'm planning on week 4 being my fish shopping week now.

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Jerad81

Apparently I got a little over excited a couple weeks ago that my tank was about done with the cycling process. It's now been about 4 weeks and I'm still working on it. I just tested my water again after adding more ammonia to it yesterday and my nitrite is at about 0.2 ppm after 24 hrs. It's getting close now but still not quite there. I'm hoping by next weekend I'll be able to add a couple fish to it. Here's an updated pic of my tank for the contest. Nothing has changed yet but hopefully I'll have something to show off by next week fingerscrossed.

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debbeach13

The waiting game. I forget did you pick a theme for this tank?

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Jerad81
49 minutes ago, debbeach13 said:

The waiting game. I forget did you pick a theme for this tank?

Yeah, my theme is to only stock it with livestock that costs less than $45. Kind of a budget build really. 

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Ratvan
On 2/29/2020 at 1:04 AM, Jerad81 said:

Yeah, my theme is to only stock it with livestock that costs less than $45. Kind of a budget build really. 

Woohoo team Budget

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Jerad81

I just got my first two roommates yesterday! I figure I'll give them a week or two and start adding some coral and clean up crew to the tank. Hopefully they won't get too jealous. 😁

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Jerad81

I have a couple new additions to my tank. I decided to add a trochus snail after noticing some brown spots starting to form on my rock. I'm hoping there's enough to keep one snail fed and happy for now. I also added two zebra hermit crabs to start cleaning up all the leftover food my clown fish leave behind. I'm learning just how difficult it is to not overfeed them every day but I guess that will be good for the crabs right lol. My lfs was also nice enough to give me a free sample of a few algae wafers for them as well just to help make sure they have enough food. Unfortunately they were out of empty shells for them so I'll have to order those online. Hopefully they'll be content in their current shells until those arrive. Now I need to decide what coral I want to start with, hopefully by next week.

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Jerad81

Thanks to the coronavirus my lfs is only open about 3 hours a day and only selling "essential" items now. I guess my plan to start adding some coral to my tank this weekend is not going to happen. I've been a little nervous to do any online shopping for anything alive but now it looks like that may be my only source for a while. I am curious though if anyone has had any issues with shopping online because of the current problems we're all going through? 

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Bekolsyra
12 minutes ago, Jerad81 said:

Thanks to the coronavirus my lfs is only open about 3 hours a day and only selling "essential" items now. I guess my plan to start adding some coral to my tank this weekend is not going to happen. I've been a little nervous to do any online shopping for anything alive but now it looks like that may be my only source for a while. I am curious though if anyone has had any issues with shopping online because of the current problems we're all going through? 

Utilize the time for proper cycling.

Maybe somebody in your vincinity is willing to sell some frags if you don't want to take any chances with shipping.

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Jerad81
On 3/20/2020 at 2:03 PM, Bekolsyra said:

Utilize the time for proper cycling.

Maybe somebody in your vincinity is willing to sell some frags if you don't want to take any chances with shipping.

That's a great idea, I never actually considered looking for other reefers locally. I'll have to start now. 

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Coolbreeze
On 3/20/2020 at 2:50 PM, Jerad81 said:

Thanks to the coronavirus my lfs is only open about 3 hours a day and only selling "essential" items now. I guess my plan to start adding some coral to my tank this weekend is not going to happen. I've been a little nervous to do any online shopping for anything alive but now it looks like that may be my only source for a while. I am curious though if anyone has had any issues with shopping online because of the current problems we're all going through? 

I only order from online suppliers as my LFS I would not buy from as their tanks are not kept to my liking. Since you are trying to be low cost you do not really have a good option online as just the shipping cost will be $29.00 with a $9.00 boxing charge. You would need to order most of what you want at one time.

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Jerad81

Unfortunately with everything that's going on right now I haven't been able to maintain my tank. I've finally accepted that my best option will be to clean it out and restart it when everything settles back down and gets back to normal. I'll still be around the forum but will no longer have a tank to show off or post updates for until then.

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debbeach13

You don't think you can just keep the tank as is? What are you going to do with the fish?

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SliceGolfer
On 3/21/2020 at 2:41 PM, Jerad81 said:

That's a great idea, I never actually considered looking for other reefers locally. I'll have to start now. 

Where in Iowa are you? Look up Greater Iowa Reef Society.

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Jerad81
15 hours ago, debbeach13 said:

You don't think you can just keep the tank as is? What are you going to do with the fish?

I tried. My tank has been overrun with some nasty brown stuff. I've seen something in the sand growing that looks like mold. I'm running out of water to clean it and my fish just died recently because of it. My best option now is to clean it out to get all that junk out of it and try again when I get it back to healthy. 

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Jerad81
15 hours ago, SliceGolfer said:

Where in Iowa are you? Look up Greater Iowa Reef Society.

I live in Des Moines. I never heard of the Greater Iowa Reef Society before but I will definitely look into it now. I wish I had known to look for them earlier I might have been able to maintain my tank through this epidemic with their help and advice. I'm going to have to start over now but maybe they will help get me moving in a better starting direction this time.

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RedCrow
39 minutes ago, Jerad81 said:

My tank has been overrun with some nasty brown stuff. I've seen something in the sand growing that looks like mold.

Can we see a photo? Just sounds like diatoms to me. 

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Jerad81
10 minutes ago, RedCrow said:

Can we see a photo? Just sounds like diatoms to me. 

Here's a photo. It probably is just diatoms but a lot of the water has also evaporated so my nutrient levels need to be put back in their proper place as well. The part that's destroying me is not having a water source to do that now.

20200406_094919.jpg

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RedCrow
SliceGolfer
1 hour ago, Jerad81 said:

I live in Des Moines. I never heard of the Greater Iowa Reef Society before but I will definitely look into it now. I wish I had known to look for them earlier I might have been able to maintain my tank through this epidemic with their help and advice. I'm going to have to start over now but maybe they will help get me moving in a better starting direction this time.

Resources you can tap in to:

Greater Iowa Reef Society: https://www.greateriowareefsociety.org/

Iowa Pet Food and Seascapes - West Des Moines, Westown Parkway and 22nd Street next to Gold's Gym

Adams Aquatics - Des Moines, near Lower Beaver and Euclid

 

I would stay clear of Aqualand in Des Moines and The Ark in Ames. Both are much, much older shops with freshwater as primary focus. Petco at Jordan Creek Mall had saltwater a few years back, I have no idea of current state.

 

Hope this helps

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