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I have cycled for a week, lights off, but i think its time, or is it?


Ytouf

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I have cycled my 4 gallon AGA tall tank for a week today. I used live sand, and live rock that was cured and COVERED in coraline algae. I also had the lights off the whole time because I am waiting for my new lights from Hello Lights I ordered yesterday (13w 50/50 with socket that has built on ballast, to replace my 9w 50/50). Anyway, I plan on cycling for about 3 to 4 weeks with MINIMAL LIGHTING (less than 4 hours a week). I hope the coraline doesn't die or get damaged, but I have heard it will spread better this way, I wouldn't know because I have always cycled with the lights on. So today I want to add things that don't need light, snails and crabs. Can I add the whole crew today? Will that do any damage? On this Nano I plan on getting about 6 crabs and around 4 snails. However, I may even get more crabs than that. Any reason why my tank couldn't handle that today?

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I don't think it is a good idea to cycle a tank w/ no lights or even 4 hous /week. There is stuff on the LR that needs light to grow, including CA. Once you get your new lights some of the CA will die back but that's just the way it is. It will come back and there are suppliments to enhance CA growth. All inhabitants of a tank benifit from light. As to adding a cleaning crew, what are your water tests showing? I'd run my lights for 10 hous/day for a week and see if the water tests OK then consider adding livestock. BTW: Where did you hear that CA spreads better w/ no lights? Considering it needs light to grow?

 

This is from garf.org:

 

"Lighting the live rock grow out tank with 2 Triton 40 watt bulbs to each Blue Moon 40 watt bulb has produced the fastest growth of Coraline algae. We keep the lights on for 14 hours and the Coraline algae grows on every part of the rock that is exposed to the light. We have found many types of coralline algae that thrive in different types of light. Some colors of coralline grow best in the top section of the grow out tanks while others always grow best in the lowest part of the system. The best way to get good coralline algae growth on your tank raised live rock is to start the systems with a large number of different species of coralline algae."

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Perhaps we are both on the same page and don't know it. Your quote says "...while others always grow best in the lowest part of the system". I just meant that some will grow better in no light, and no light will keep down bad algae right now too. And then soon I will turn on the lights, and have the CA that likes light emerge and have passed the point where nutrients in the water can cause lots of bad algae. I think I am going to add a few crabs at a time to the system now, perhaps I will only add two crabs and one snail.

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Originally posted by Ytouf

Perhaps we are both on the same page and don't know it. Your quote says "...while others always grow best in the lowest part of the system". I just meant that some will grow better in no light, and no light will keep down bad algae right now too. And then soon I will turn on the lights, and have the CA that likes light emerge and have passed the point where nutrients in the water can cause lots of bad algae. I think I am going to add a few crabs at a time to the system now, perhaps I will only add two crabs and one snail.

 

Quite possibe. Be interested in knowing how the CA does. Please keep us updated. Always interested in new ideas. Once you start using the lights you'll probably still have green algae grow. Those little buggers are sneaky little things!

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Well I added 6 smaller hermit crabs and 1 astrea snail. Should be a good cleaning crew for the next couple of weeks until I get the full cycle done. Then I'll probably get an Orchid Dottyback or a Yellow Clown Goby, except I hear that the Goby can be hard to feed and I dont want to have to pollute my tank trying to feed it by dumping lots of food in there

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Christopher Pearson

rather than worrying about algae. I prefer to watch the nitrogen cycle itself. when it zeros, then you know its been through the cycle.

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