Advice for a first-time saltwater tank person

lyss'movingcastle

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Hi, so I've never had a saltwater tank before. Well, to be honest, I have never owned a fish before but I've never really thought freshwater fish were that cool to begin with (no offense <3) I'm thinking about getting a 10 gallon tank to start out with. I'm also thinking of getting an ocellaris clownfish (basic I know) to go in there. I just don't know what other fish I would have that would go good with the ocellairs and be able to survive in a 10 gal. I know I'm adding in a clean up crew, maybe 2 nassarius snails, and a peppermint shrimp. Eventually, I would love to get some coral and an anemone but again idk what would be good :/. So if I could get some advice on anything I stated here or if I'm wrong about my choices please let me know.
 

ff2807

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Hi, so I've never had a saltwater tank before. Well, to be honest, I have never owned a fish before but I've never really thought freshwater fish were that cool to begin with (no offense <3) I'm thinking about getting a 10 gallon tank to start out with. I'm also thinking of getting an ocellaris clownfish (basic I know) to go in there. I just don't know what other fish I would have that would go good with the ocellairs and be able to survive in a 10 gal. I know I'm adding in a clean up crew, maybe 2 nassarius snails, and a peppermint shrimp. Eventually, I would love to get some coral and an anemone but again idk what would be good :/. So if I could get some advice on anything I stated here or if I'm wrong about my choices please let me know.
Welcome a lot of good folks here to help
 
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F i s h y

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Welcome to the group. Lots of great small tank deals available out on fb groups. Should include most everything you need. Bigger tanks can be easier.. Lots of great people here to help. As you have individual questions feel free to ask. Welcome and good luck...
 
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vetteguy53081

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Some of the essentials you will need are :

  1. Aquarium/Tank
    You need to decide where you want to put your aquarium, determine what size you want or may only have room for, whether you want an acrylic or glass tank, and choose a style that will best fit into the spot you have picked out to display it.
  2. Lighting
    The type of lighting you choose will be based on the type of system you have planned to set up, as well as what kind of livestock you will be keeping in it.
  3. Skimmers, Filters & Filtration Equipment
    Once again, what type of system you are going to set up will help you determine which kind of filters and filtration system to choose.
  4. Powerhead
    Depending on the size of your aquarium, the use of one or several powerheads is an excellent way to provide good water circulation throughout the system.
  5. Live Rock & Substrate
    Here you need to decide on what type of material you want on the bottom of the tank, as well as whether you want to start with a live or non-living medium. Live Rock plays an important role in a marine tank. Many marine animals, fish in particular, can be quite territorial. It is important to provide ample shelter or places where the animals can hide, sleep, and avoid potential problems with aggression from other tankmates in the confined space of an aquarium.
  6. Sea Salt Mix/Saltwater & Hydrometer
    Sea salts are what make an aquarium a saltwater or marine aquarium. Also referred to as a salinity tester, this item measures the specific gravity or salt content of the water.
  7. Heater & Thermometer
    For smaller aquariums one heater works well, but for larger systems the use of multiple units is advised. With stick-on, floating, multi-function remote digital sensor, and many other types of units to pick from, the material a thermometer is made of is an important factor when choosing one as well.
  8. Air Pump & Air Stones
    Only needed if you are going to run a piece of equipment that requires these items, or for quarantining and medicating fish
  9. Test Kits, Additives & Supplements
    For live rock and reef tank systems, calcium (a.k.a. limewater/kalkwasser) needs to be added. Other supplemental vitamins or additives that are beneficial to the health of certain marine inhabitants you may be keeping, such a iodine for crustaceans, are important as well.
  10. Maintenance Tools & Supplies
    This category includes having items on hand such as a various sized plastic buckets or containers, tank cleaning tools such as a siphon tube/hose, an algae scraper or magnet, as well as nets of different sizes, spare equipment replacements parts, and so on. A good way to keep track of what maintenance tasks you have preformed and when is to keep a log book or record of everything you do.
 
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BoxKing

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Think about what equipment will work for your future tank mates, and this should help pic out the right gear from the get go. For instance, some all in one tanks come with lighting in the package - and will most likely not suffice for the health of an anemone.

I’d suggest an IM20 Gal. They have a full kit package without lights that can get you well on your way without the need to piece everything together. All you would need is a Neotherm 75watt heater, ATO, and a light source - sand and rock not included.

Get a budget… in my opinion you can get a pretty decent setup like the one I mentioned with all the equipment, sand and rock fro about $750

EDIT…. The above post actually adds to the cost of this hobby, and is very much accurate - I totally forgot about maintenance, testing etc… also added.. a good source for RODI - either your own unit, a local LFS supply or a local reefer that’s willing to hook you up.
 
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Waynerock

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Best advice? Are you married? If you are don’t get a tank! Haha just kidding my wife completely appreciates all the time and energy and money I put in my reef tank. She’s extremely understanding when all I do is talk about my reef tank and not her and she totally gets a kick out of me planning stops at LFS’s when we are on family VK’s and delaying our time returning home so I can make it to the LFS before we leave and bring a coral home with me. I am married to my tank and my wife is a hobby! Totally just kidding, she might read this. Love you hon
 
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phillybean

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The great thing about this hobby is you can go as simple as possible or complicated and elaborate. I'm somewhere in the middle.

It is possible to go with a basic 10 gallon tank, but will be easier to have success going with a AIO (All in one) set up. Will likely be cheaper in the long run as well. The EVO 13.5 that was mentioned earlier is probably the best option out there right now IMO. A pair of clowns and a watchman goby should do well in there.

The best advice I can give is to do a lot of research, make sure you know what you want, plan every step and every piece of equipment. Most importantly, go slow. Good things happy slowly, bad things happen fast.
 
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blaxsun

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Small tanks seem like a bargain, but you usually end up paying a premium for accessories like pumps, protein skimmers, etc. I’d second the suggestion for a 13.5 gallon EVO. Has everything you need and the skimmer and heater are already pre-slotted in the design.
 
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olonmv

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Best advice? Are you married? If you are don’t get a tank! Haha just kidding my wife completely appreciates all the time and energy and money I put in my reef tank. She’s extremely understanding when all I do is talk about my reef tank and not her and she totally gets a kick out of me planning stops at LFS’s when we are on family VK’s and delaying our time returning home so I can make it to the LFS before we leave and bring a coral home with me. I am married to my tank and my wife is a hobby! Totally just kidding, she might read this. Love you hon
Yay! I’m not the only one!!!!
 
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Azedenkae

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Hi, so I've never had a saltwater tank before. Well, to be honest, I have never owned a fish before but I've never really thought freshwater fish were that cool to begin with (no offense <3) I'm thinking about getting a 10 gallon tank to start out with. I'm also thinking of getting an ocellaris clownfish (basic I know) to go in there. I just don't know what other fish I would have that would go good with the ocellairs and be able to survive in a 10 gal. I know I'm adding in a clean up crew, maybe 2 nassarius snails, and a peppermint shrimp. Eventually, I would love to get some coral and an anemone but again idk what would be good :/. So if I could get some advice on anything I stated here or if I'm wrong about my choices please let me know.
Welcome! :D One of the biggest difference between freshwater and saltwater, is that nitrite is non-toxic to marine fish: http://reefkeeping.com/issues/2005-06/rhf/index.php. Well to be more accurate, it needs to be super high to be lethal, like super high. Just fyi. ^_^
 
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PeterC99

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Welcome to R2R!

Best advice is to read up on this hobby! You have already taken the perfect first step by joining R2R!

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lyss'movingcastle

lyss'movingcastle

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If you dont have a burning desire to keep a fish from the sea I would pass If I were you. There is a steep learning curve
and a significant expense.
I do! I've always loved sea creatures when I was a kid and would love to have little friends of my own that come from the sea ^_^ I'm not trying to go super crazy rn so I'm doing alot of research before I get something.
 
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lyss'movingcastle

lyss'movingcastle

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Any possibility of going with a larger tank? The smaller the tank the harder to keep (can make a huge difference)
I've definitely heard that going a little bigger is better but space-wise 10 gallons might be the max size I can go atm :(
 
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Azedenkae

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I've definitely heard that going a little bigger is better but space-wise 10 gallons might be the max size I can go atm :(
That's alright. So long as you are willing, you can defo do it! ^_^
 
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Hyjnks

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Hi, so I've never had a saltwater tank before. Well, to be honest, I have never owned a fish before but I've never really thought freshwater fish were that cool to begin with (no offense <3) I'm thinking about getting a 10 gallon tank to start out with. I'm also thinking of getting an ocellaris clownfish (basic I know) to go in there. I just don't know what other fish I would have that would go good with the ocellairs and be able to survive in a 10 gal. I know I'm adding in a clean up crew, maybe 2 nassarius snails, and a peppermint shrimp. Eventually, I would love to get some coral and an anemone but again idk what would be good :/. So if I could get some advice on anything I stated here or if I'm wrong about my choices please let me know.
So I just setup my 100g tank a few days ago - never done before - happy to track progress together - everything I’m reading and watching is taking it slow
 
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