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is skimmer a must in a coral tank only.....?


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hi i'm sure ya'll heard about me...so i juzt wanna know ..if my coral tank [15G] needs a skimmer....[no fish]...just coral

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I've been running my 5g coral tank for about 7 months now with no skimmer and its doing fine. I have 1 fish and 2 shrimps in there.

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My aquapod 24 has

~25lbs LR, -12lbs sand.


Multiheaded Branching Hammer coral

Huge and growing red starburst coral

tons of shrooms, many types

yellow non photosynthetic gorgonian

big pack of 5 different zoas



1 yellowtail damsel

1 3 stripe damsel

6 hermits various

snails: 1 nasarius, 3 turbos and Tons of weird stomatella's that breed and hide

1 Skunk cleaner shrimp (he's the tank boss)

1 5" brittle star I rarely see.


I had a fission skimmer, hated it.

I just do 4 gallon water changes once a week. Had a small cyano outbreak 3 months ago that is fixed.

Clear water.


To skim or not to skim.

no idea.


I also have a 29 that I'm more worried about skimming in.

I bought a prizm but it leaked and was too loud. Drove me nuts. I returned it.

I might buy a skimmer for the sump I'm building but that's in the future.


Water changes are your friend.

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The answer is no, you don’t ever ‘need’ a skimmer (even with fish) if you perform adequate water changes. In general, I would say that a fishless tank doesn’t need one; however, there are still some other considerations when making this decision.


If your tank is stocked with photosynthetic corals that get most of their energy from light, you should not have to feed very much or very often (so there would be less of a ‘need’ for a skimmer). However, some photosynthetic corals require supplemental feedings (which will result in dissolved organics that can be reduced by a skimmer).


Non-photosynthetic corals require feeding (some quite substantial). In some cases aquarists have been known to move corals into another tank for feeding (so as not to pollute the display). Properly feeding some of these corals in the display would require a skimmer to help maintain water quality.


While certain corals don’t mind relatively nutrient rich water, others are not as tolerant. So if you feed your corals, but still need to maintain pristine water quality, get a skimmer. In addition to water quality, a skimmer will increase oxygen levels (and help maintain pH).

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