All Live Everything, Tank Reboot

Zoanthids

BostonReefer300

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Good idea, I’ll just dump it in directly after I add the sand and rock. Thanks!

Haha, no, I certainly wasn’t. I’m determined to get every single bit of contaminated something out of this system. All new plumbing, no reused rock or sand. The only thing staying is the equipment. Otherwise, it’s all bye bye!!

I also removed my chaetomaxx grow light, cooling fan, and heater. We keep the house at 75 during the evening and night, then 77 during the day, and I haven’t had to run the fan or heater in forever. Tank stays between 76 and 78, usually, so I’m good with that.

Any advice on potentially running a cryptic refugium? I am super interested in getting one started with any live rock I either can’t fit or don’t want in my display, but I’m having trouble finding much info on how to get one started aside from removing light and adding rock.
Regarding the cryptic refugium concept, I'm no expert. However, I decided to convert my standard refugium into an anemone display tank in my sump. I was a little worried about what that would do to my nutrient exporting, so I put several bags of ceramic bio-spheres (link below) in my sump in a moderate flow area---my own version of a cryptic refugium. (The bags are piled on top of each other so some of them get less flow I suppose.). Even though I have plenty of porous rock and sand in my DT, I figured the spheres in my dark sump would be a great habitat for pods and obviously bacteria. Well, my nutrient levels plummeted fast and far (too much so!) and my pod populations exploded. Once I reduced my water change volume and frequency, I got back to acceptable nutrient levels without the need to specially dose any nutrients. So, short story, seems like my sort-of cryptic refugium is working great---and couldn't be simpler.
 

willieboy240

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I’ve run a cryptic zone for years. I don’t know if it does anything but it’s cool. It takes a long time to get it going as sponges grow slow. KZ sponge additive is really good.
gulf rock is great. Lots of die off over time. If you hear clicking, you have a mantis shrimp btw. He will kill your fish.
Glad you figured out your problem too
 
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Apollo7235

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Regarding the cryptic refugium concept, I'm no expert. However, I decided to convert my standard refugium into an anemone display tank in my sump. I was a little worried about what that would do to my nutrient exporting, so I put several bags of ceramic bio-spheres (link below) in my sump in a moderate flow area---my own version of a cryptic refugium. (The bags are piled on top of each other so some of them get less flow I suppose.). Even though I have plenty of porous rock and sand in my DT, I figured the spheres in my dark sump would be a great habitat for pods and obviously bacteria. Well, my nutrient levels plummeted fast and far (too much so!) and my pod populations exploded. Once I reduced my water change volume and frequency, I got back to acceptable nutrient levels without the need to specially dose any nutrients. So, short story, seems like my sort-of cryptic refugium is working great---and couldn't be simpler.
Do you have any sponges growing? I really would like to go that route to help with nutrient export. I know chaeto is one way to go, but I’ve seen a lot of controversy over whether or not it actually helps.
 
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Apollo7235

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I’ve run a cryptic zone for years. I don’t know if it does anything but it’s cool. It takes a long time to get it going as sponges grow slow. KZ sponge additive is really good.
gulf rock is great. Lots of die off over time. If you hear clicking, you have a mantis shrimp btw. He will kill your fish.
Glad you figured out your problem too
Thank you!! The primary reason I would like a cryptic refugium is to help with nutrient export considering I feed heavy for my 5 LPS.

I’ll take a look at the KZ additive. Hopefully it helps!

I already have two pistols and they click and snap a lot, but I guess I will probably hear the difference.
 

Mibu

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Do you have any sponges growing? I really would like to go that route to help with nutrient export. I know chaeto is one way to go, but I’ve seen a lot of controversy over whether or not it actually helps.
I like all of it. If you get sponges to grow in a cryptic zone, drop some riods there once a week. Not a lot. I love my chaeto. It has its way to help water quality. I have issues getting phosphates to show up with my algae, however. I am having a difficult time with growing my cryptic zone. My old aquarium had a very large cryptic zone, it was full of life. I dropped food there once a week for the other animals.
Something about real live rock that really runs an aquarium better. Only in my own experiences.
 

BostonReefer300

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Do you have any sponges growing? I really would like to go that route to help with nutrient export. I know chaeto is one way to go, but I’ve seen a lot of controversy over whether or not it actually helps.
I don't have sponges growing in my cryptic zone that I know about. Speaking of sponges, we have a discussion going in another thread about them. I used to think sponges were a sign of a healthy aquarium and great for helping clear the water. However, vetteguy53081 and I were helping another guy a couple weeks ago with sponges and he said sponges could be toxic. He posted this link:
Anyway, I had one yellow sponge growing in a dark, high flow area of my DT that I scraped off and netted out after reading this. I'm not worried about tiny ones that I can't see inside my rocks, etc. but I'm not going to let big ones grow anymore.
Regarding chaeto, I'm curious what you saw that was controversial about it. IME, it works great if it's part of a properly "tuned" nutrient export program. If you're nutrients are usually at a good level and you add chaeto but don't change anything about your export program, you're going to strip nutrients too low---that's a common problem people have. It's also great habitat for pods, but so's a cryptic zone.
 

LRT

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Well done! Great choice with gulf rock and sand. I wouldnt worry about adding any bottle bac. Your rock and sand are going to be packed with bacteria necessary to establish healthy reef in no time. Im also running gulf rock. Being that your close you really shouldn't experience much die off but you will experience some due to it sits out of water during harvest and shipping. Initital shock being placed in new salt water etc. Expect tons of clams, bivalves, sponges of all colors, corals, sea plants and critters. Be very careful with initial placement of rock in system. Look for bare spots and try to put them in your system bare spots down so you don't crush clams and corals. After few hours look again as alot of corals and critters will start acclimating. You dont want to crush anything and cause die off and ammonia spikes.
Watch your ammonia. Make sure you do water changes to keep in check but you should be good in no time. Feel free to reach out if you need anything.
Always good to see a comeback!
 
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LRT

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I'll also point out something thats going to be very important that im sure will be overlooked.
You will be fine for first week or 2 but be sure to monitor your ph, alk, cal and mag. Alot of reefers(myself included) overlook this fact. Your rock will be covered in critters and algae that use these elements up in quick fashion so your going to want to make sure you keep these params in check right out of the gate to ensure proper cycle and curing process.
In just 10 days my new tank used 80ppm mag, 50 cal and 1dkh a day. Dont be blindsided and let it creep up on you.
 
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Apollo7235

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I don't have sponges growing in my cryptic zone that I know about. Speaking of sponges, we have a discussion going in another thread about them. I used to think sponges were a sign of a healthy aquarium and great for helping clear the water. However, vetteguy53081 and I were helping another guy a couple weeks ago with sponges and he said sponges could be toxic. He posted this link:
Anyway, I had one yellow sponge growing in a dark, high flow area of my DT that I scraped off and netted out after reading this. I'm not worried about tiny ones that I can't see inside my rocks, etc. but I'm not going to let big ones grow anymore.
Regarding chaeto, I'm curious what you saw that was controversial about it. IME, it works great if it's part of a properly "tuned" nutrient export program. If you're nutrients are usually at a good level and you add chaeto but don't change anything about your export program, you're going to strip nutrients too low---that's a common problem people have. It's also great habitat for pods, but so's a cryptic zone.
I’ve seen that article, but as always, there’s another to contradict it, and just the same for the chaeto!

Darn the wealth of information available to us these days! You can never figure out what to believe, haha
 
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Apollo7235

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I'll also point out something thats going to be very important that im sure will be overlooked.
You will be fine for first week or 2 but be sure to monitor your ph, alk, cal and mag. Alot of reefers(myself included) overlook this fact. Your rock will be covered in critters and algae that use these elements up in quick fashion so your going to want to make sure you keep these params in check right out of the gate to ensure proper cycle and curing process.
In just 10 days my new tank used 80ppm mag, 50 cal and 1dkh a day. Dont be blindsided and let it creep up on you.
Aiyaiyai, well, hopefully that’s not the case with my system this coming week! We had a death in the family, so I will be out for about 5 days next week. Very unexpected, or I wouldn’t have planned things this way.

Oh well, I’ll do a big water change on Sunday and I’ll also look into some dosing options just to get me by until I can really get into the fine tuning of it all.

Thank you so much for the info!
 

BostonReefer300

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I’ve seen that article, but as always, there’s another to contradict it, and just the same for the chaeto!

Darn the wealth of information available to us these days! You can never figure out what to believe, haha
Ain't that the truth!
 

LRT

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Aiyaiyai, well, hopefully that’s not the case with my system this coming week! We had a death in the family, so I will be out for about 5 days next week. Very unexpected, or I wouldn’t have planned things this way.

Oh well, I’ll do a big water change on Sunday and I’ll also look into some dosing options just to get me by until I can really get into the fine tuning of it all.

Thank you so much for the info!
Hmm thats probably not good. 5 days out of water will cause tons of die off.
Can you postpone delivery?
Really would be better in your tank with at least a heater
 
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Apollo7235

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Received my rock and sand today!

Beautiful rock, very stinky sand, haha. All is in the tank and I’m waiting for the water to clear so I can post some photos. I have some filter floss rubber banded to the return hose, so hopefully that clears things up a little bit more quickly! Keeping my skimmer off until the water clears, then it’s onward from there!!

I found a bunch of these critters in the box and hanging off one of the rocks. I am pretty sure the blackish one is a bristle worm, but somebody please tell me that the red one is not a fire worm? There are a bunch of the red ones, so if it is, I’m going to have my hands full…… haha
E929077C-4DFF-4C6D-9A63-C3DECB524BD1.jpeg
 
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Apollo7235

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Hmm thats probably not good. 5 days out of water will cause tons of die off.
Can you postpone delivery?
Really would be better in your tank with at least a heater
Oh no, you misunderstand me. I meant I’ll be gone for 5 days, but the rock and sand are already in my tank and all is well. I just won’t be able to monitor the parameters while I’m gone.
 

BostonReefer300

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Received my rock and sand today!

Beautiful rock, very stinky sand, haha. All is in the tank and I’m waiting for the water to clear so I can post some photos. I have some filter floss rubber banded to the return hose, so hopefully that clears things up a little bit more quickly! Keeping my skimmer off until the water clears, then it’s onward from there!!

I found a bunch of these critters in the box and hanging off one of the rocks. I am pretty sure the blackish one is a bristle worm, but somebody please tell me that the red one is not a fire worm? There are a bunch of the red ones, so if it is, I’m going to have my hands full…… haha
E929077C-4DFF-4C6D-9A63-C3DECB524BD1.jpeg
Nice!
Fireworms can usually be distinguised by white tufts:
1627431996874.png
 
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PICK the Most Tested & Least Tested Parameters of your Tank (Pick 2)

  • Calcium (most)

    Votes: 37 6.2%
  • Alkalinity (most)

    Votes: 422 70.7%
  • Magnesium (most)

    Votes: 5 0.8%
  • Phosphate (most)

    Votes: 46 7.7%
  • PH (most)

    Votes: 62 10.4%
  • Nitrate (most)

    Votes: 53 8.9%
  • Nitrite (most)

    Votes: 3 0.5%
  • Ammonia (most)

    Votes: 13 2.2%
  • (least) Calcium

    Votes: 8 1.3%
  • (least) Alkalinity

    Votes: 4 0.7%
  • (least) Magnesium

    Votes: 48 8.0%
  • (least) Phosphate

    Votes: 8 1.3%
  • (least) PH

    Votes: 30 5.0%
  • (least) Nitrate

    Votes: 11 1.8%
  • (least) Nitrite

    Votes: 177 29.6%
  • (least) Ammonia

    Votes: 237 39.7%
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