45 gallon macro algae lagoon build

nickmealey

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Hey R2R!

I've been into reefing for about 7 years now, but I realized I've never posted any of my builds or updates. Time to change that! I've had a lot of fun over the years reading other builds and I'd like to contribute.

I'm currently working on 3 different builds, but the one I'd like to share is a lagoon style tank I recently picked up that I'm targeting for macro algae, gorgonias, mangroves, and the like. I recently found a custom made shallow tank in the area and picked it up a couple days ago. This one is going in our work office. The reason I decided on macro algae is because as an office tank, I'd like to keep things simple. Also it seems a bit unique and I like the change from a coral focused tank. I haven't seen many displays that really catch my eye, but the semi-recent tank of the month was inspiring.

Tank dimensions: w:36" x d:24" x h:12" (45 gal)

For the aquascape, I really wanted to go for something that is very "lagoony". Deep(ish) sand bed on a slope with NSA type rockwork protruding from the water to get that split level feel.

Equipment is pretty straightforward:
- Custom lagoon tank and stand
- RO VarioS return pump
- AI Nero
- Deltec skimmer
- Fiji cube sump
- Twinstar 600SP (planted tank light)

As for fish, I'd love some input. I'm fairly determined to keep this tank open top (rock and mangroves). I realize no lid is a general no-go, but I'm really going for it :) I had thought about trying a bunch of blue/green chromis. Since there will be little to no coral in tank, I'm not worried so much of nippy fish. I do have a bit more swimming room than a typical 45 gal because it's so shallow (3 ft).

Today I got the tank setup and wet. Will be seeding with live rock and take some more photos of the finished aquascape tomorrow. Here's what I have so far:



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nickmealey

nickmealey

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Cycle has begun :) Used some live rock from another tank to get things seeded. Really happy with how the scape came together. Got everything plugged in, installed, and organized (no leaks so far ;)). I'm digging these small cable clips that keep the wiring nice but also simple. Water is a bit cloudy but running some filter floss and carbon to hopefully clear things up a bit. Now just waiting for the light to come.

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nickmealey

nickmealey

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Also side note: I got this 10 gal tank at Petco for $10 that I'm using for an ATO container. Combined with the lid it makes for a nice fit for the size of the stand.
 
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nickmealey

nickmealey

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Looking for fish stocking options. I currently have a single hooded fairy wrasse in the tank. Some options I'm thinking about:
- Purple firefish
- Shrimp goby
- Jester goby
- Red/green mandarin
- Pipefish
- Filefish
 
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nickmealey

nickmealey

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Diatoms all gone now, which is awesome. I'm hoping the macro algae really helps keep things at bay. I've been adding a bunch of live stock with more on the way. My favorite so far is a Yasha Shrimp goby and a snapping shrimp. They've got a nice cove going and seem to be doing well.

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nickmealey

nickmealey

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Lid on! Unfortunately a few days too late as I had some chalk bass jump on me. Funny how impatience always ready to bite in this hobby. I should have just waited for the lid first before getting those fish, and I should know by now right? Anyway, I'm happy how the lid turned out!
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