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SteveG66

NOOB! Gettomg upgrading from Freshwater to 34 cube

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Good morning,

 

Well, a longtime interest is finally going to happen, I had an aquarium as a kid and my daughter is now interested and we have the agreement to do a small saltwater NANO. I am buying a preowned tank and setup that will need to be moved about 1/2 hour to our new spot.

 

The unit we bought was somewhat neglected with a lot fo algae growing on the back and live rock, but the mechanics are functioning and the sand looks ok.

 

Questions:

 

Suggestions on how to minimize the stress on the fish and corals? I assume I'll siphon water from the tank into a bucket for the coral and fish in bags? Should I retain any of the other water?

 

Sand: live sand should I keep or dispose and buy new? How do I get it out of the tank if replacing withiout scratching the glass?

 

Replacement water: I'll have plenty of premixed, purchased from the reef, water on hand but how do I heat that much water up- house is around 78 degrees, is that close enought?? I suppose a 55 gal drum with a heater in it?

 

The tank is rimless, are there any concerns I should be thinking about to make sure it doesnt split at the seems?

 

How do I clean up the algae manually? Any chemicals I can use or should avoid?

 

How much time do I have to get this all done?

 

Any help and suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

 

Thanks,
SteveG and Izzy!!!

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Steve, welcome and congrats on the first tank!

 

Suggestions on how to minimize the stress on the fish and corals? I assume I'll siphon water from the tank into a bucket for the coral and fish in bags? Should I retain any of the other water?

 

-- Both fish and corals can go in buckets / rubbermaids, you shouldn't need to bag anything unless that's just easier for you to do that way. In theory it works very well to save as much water as possible, however if the water is fairly dirty in terms of dissolved organics (sounds like it could be from the algae in there) then I would get rid of most of it. Keeping the liverock in water for as much as the transition will keep any dieoff to a minimum, and will not allow your fresh mixed saltwater to cycle once you get it back home and up and running.

 

Sand: live sand should I keep or dispose and buy new? How do I get it out of the tank if replacing withiout scratching the glass?

 

-- Saving a little bit of the very top layer (top 1/2" or so) would be good. The rest of it I would wash and rinse with a hose and bucket and put it back in. You can then help re-seed it with the small 1-2lbs that you saved and bagged up. Scoop it out with a plastic cup, or anything else handy.

 

Replacement water: I'll have plenty of premixed, purchased from the reef, water on hand but how do I heat that much water up- house is around 78 degrees, is that close enought?? I suppose a 55 gal drum with a heater in it?

 

-- Get some rubbermaid tubs, trash cans, etc... Throw a powerhead and heater in it and you'll be good to go. I'd also highly suggest investing in an RO/DI system. You can pick one up brand new for $150 at the most, and will have control over the quality of water you are making, rather than purchasing it.

 

The tank is rimless, are there any concerns I should be thinking about to make sure it doesnt split at the seems?

 

-- Assuming the tank was manufactured as a rimless tank it will be just fine and not split at the seams.

 

How do I clean up the algae manually? Any chemicals I can use or should avoid?

 

-- Bringing in algae is not the best way to start in being successful, however it sounds like you're purchasing the entire setup and you're going to need to just transfer the tank. If you can tell us the exact type of algae that's in it, or just get us some pictures of it, we can certainly help in what you should do. There are various different ways of getting the algae to dieoff, but the very first step is cutting off it's food source. The food source is usually dissolved organics in the water (most common are nitrate and phosphate). This all starts with ensuring that the water you're using to set the tank up, as well as your topoff water is always nitrate and phosphate free (this is where you purchasing the RO/DI comes in and ensuring that you are using good, clean water). There are other ways of reducing nitrate and phosphate in the water column, using a good cleanup crew to help control and get rid of what's there, plus other things. Certainly pick / scrub off as much as possible when you're transferring the rock, but again getting us some pics to ID the algae would be helpful.

 

How much time do I have to get this all done?

 

-- You should be able to knock all of this out in about a half day or just a little longer. The corals and fish both will last for quite a while in buckets and rubbermaids. Keep in mind fish will use the oxygen faster than corals will, so aerating the water is not a bad idea as you're in the process of setting up the new tank.

 

Feel free to ask as many questions as possible, we're all here to help!

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Thanks for the suggestions, this is probably a decent picture that will help you out.

 

20160820_1642361.jpg

 

It's really dark algae....my apologies if the photo is too large, not that great at posting photos in forums.

 

Thanks again for anyones help, it's always appreciated.

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That is hair algae, which feeds on excess phosphate and nitrate within your system. I'd recommend scrubb as much off during the move as possible, but it will still be a battle after you're back and set up to finish starving it out. Using good, "0" TDS RO/DI water for both the saltwater and your freshwater topoff is a must, and is really the first step to getting rid of it. From there a good cleanup crew of crabs and snails, as well as running either nitrate or phosphate reducing media's (or carbon dosing) will be good preventative measure as well.

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Sorry about not updating this thread...we still haven't lost interest in this yet but I could see how easy it happens!! It's a lot of work and expense.

 

We've lost a few fish from jumping but none in the tank, we've added a bunch of coral right now, she's more interested in the coral than fish and I'm ok with that, I have yet to have a coral jump!

 

Upgraded the skimmer to a Tunze 9001, so far it's ok, just not getting the skimmate like I had hoped.

 

Still enjoying the hobby, we picked up a few corals yesterday as a Christmas present for her, she's noticed the frag swap this year is on her birthday, so she's hoping to attend that.

 

I took a pic tonight but will have to post later tonight, next project will be to secure the corals to the rock so it looks more permanent rather than hobbled together like it does now.

 

Thanks for asking,

Steve and Izzy

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Glad to hear you are still around! Tank is looking good...the hair algae seems to have subsided.

 

I like the gorgonians also

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Thanks, I just fragged the original gorgonian and placed it up top and around, again need to do some planning on the tank and corals....The peppermit shrimp took care of our aptasia early on, the hair algae went away, had a case of bryopsis ( I think) and that seems to be under control, it's not growing but still have the remains left. Need something that will eat it!!!

 

It's a work in progress but keeping us busy and my wallet empty!!!

 

Thanks again, btw, we'be been to PA a few times on Saturday, I can't get her out of the store.....a few of our corals have come from PA...Great people to work with for if anyone is interested!!

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Bryopsis is no fun and not too many animals are fond of it either! Haha yeah the hobby can be expensive...

 

Thanks Steve! I'm sure we have talked before then as I am there almost every other Saturday.

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I fought bryopsis for a few years. It was to the point where it was starving out my cheato in my refugium. No detectable nitrates or phosphates, and cheato slowly wasting away, harvesting bryopsis from my DT every ten days. It had first dibs on any nutrients and the advantage of lots more lighting.

Also was dealing with bubble algae to a lesser extent. Brown film on the glass (which the yellow tang LOVED) had to be scraped every day. I tried the Tech-M treatment and had zero affect.

 

I read the thread about Vibrant elsewhere and decided to give it a shot. In MY experience, it's the real deal. Six weeks in, I am officially declaring my tank bryopsis free. I see a few pale white bubbles that used to be bubble algae but I believe are dead. Glass cleaning once a week, and that's only in spots. Frankly, I'm cleaning more coralline algae off the front and side panels than anything else.

 

Incidentally, I also tried the freshwater Vibrant in my semi-planted tank hoping to put the kabosh on green matte algae. Utter disaster.

My massive bunch of horwnwort completely dissolved overnight and all but crashed the tank.

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