Aquaculture Live Rock

Lydia Mohr

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Hey! I’m sure this has been asked before but I wanted to know since I would love to use aquaculture Live Rock in the nano tank I plan to set up in the future. Question is, which is best: KP Aquatics, Live Rock n’ Reef, or Tampa Bat Saltwater? What has everyone’s experience with these brands been? I’m looking for max biodiversity and color
 

vetteguy53081

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Hey! I’m sure this has been asked before but I wanted to know since I would love to use aquaculture Live Rock in the nano tank I plan to set up in the future. Question is, which is best: KP Aquatics, Live Rock n’ Reef, or Tampa Bat Saltwater? What has everyone’s experience with these brands been? I’m looking for max biodiversity and color
Kp rock has disappointed no one and same applies to Tampa bay rock
 

mehaffydr

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I think they are all good based on reviews on R2R. I actually bought roc
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k from Gulf Live Rock and was very happy with it. Came in very Alive with corals, Clams, Brittle starts Pods. It was just full of life.
 
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Solga

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There are a bunch of pictures in this thread of mine. But to sum things up, I bought live rock from Tampa Bay Saltwater, and Gulf Live Rock. I was extremely pleased with both of them. Both were responsive to emails, and answered any questions that I had. The girls at Tampa Bay Saltwater prefer to ship out air freight only, but they were very generous in shipping my order out overnight through UPS.
Can't say enough good things about both companies, and you can't go wrong either way.

(No affiliation, just a happy customer)
 

Solga

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Oops.... Forgot the link :D
 

JoJosReef

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TBS happy customer here. Recommend to get your day-of aquascaping/rock and sand treatment planned out ahead of time--you'll minimize die-off and headache from other things like pests.

In hindsight, I would have done some sort of hypersalinity dip or quick shot of soda water in the holes of my live rock to shew out the two hiding gorilla crabs (caught and donated to someone's sump) and, more importantly, the Eunice worms (that may or may not be a real problem but I'd prefer not to find out).

Enjoy your gulf rocks! They are 100% worth it in my opinion!
 
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jetskiwilly

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Whats every ones thoughts on using fresh live rock to start a tank.....I have a new tank...with mix of dry rock (previously used but out of water over a year) and rock transferred from an existing tank. We're a week in havn't even hit the start of ugly stage. Im worried that if I spend $200 on "premium" live rock, over 1/2 will die while tank is maturing.

20 lbs of premium live rock create an instant tank...or should I wait 3 months till out of ugly stage? Sorry to highjack thread.
 

Solga

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Whats every ones thoughts on using fresh live rock to start a tank.....I have a new tank...with mix of dry rock (previously used but out of water over a year) and rock transferred from an existing tank. We're a week in havn't even hit the start of ugly stage. Im worried that if I spend $200 on "premium" live rock, over 1/2 will die while tank is maturing.

20 lbs of premium live rock create an instant tank...or should I wait 3 months till out of ugly stage? Sorry to highjack thread.
Just seeing this, and although I have not been exactly in your situation, I may be able to shed some light for you. Honestly though, you may get a lot more attention, and a few more responses if you make your own new post, asking this question.
No one can tell you what the best situation for you will be because there are just way to many variables. What are your goals for this tank ? What inhabitants are you wanting to keep ? What are your husbandry skills like ? How is your patience and are you able to fight off the urge to go out and buy new stuff ? What is your experience level ? Do you do testing ? Do you even have test kits yet ? Among many others.
With those being asked, I can tell you that I have started up a few tanks in the past 10 years or so, and I have tried several ways of starting them. In MY experience, the easiest and fastest way is to get live rock from the ocean, through TBS, GLR, or a few others out there. There are many pros and cons to each way of doing it, but the jumpstart on all of the organisms, and overall life is worth it, if you ask me. My tank, that has nothing but ocean rock in it, only needs the glass cleaned once a month or so and was supporting coral within a week or so. I have another tank that was started at around the same time, but only had a couple pieces ocean rock placed in with all of the dry rock, and it is STILL going though the 'ugly' stages. The glass needs cleaned every other day and even though the coral in this tank are alive, they are not what I would consider to be thriving.
I did start out a tank, once upon a time, with nothing but dry rock. On one hand, the scaping was probably the best that I have ever done, on the other hand when I was finally getting close to the end of the ugly stage(s) I got a couple aiptasia and bubble algae from a scraped and dipped frag. Needless to say, that tank didn't make it a year, out of frustration.
Long story short, IMHO going all live ocean rock is the only way to go. You WILL get aiptasia and other unwanted organisms eventually, no matter how hard you try to keep them out. To me, the benefits of the live rock vastly outweighs the negatives.
 
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john90009

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This stuff certainly isn’t cheap but I went with the unique corals premium rock. I got ten lbs of it and got three big and very porous pieces. I asked for branching as much as possible and that’s what they sent. Can in quiet colorful. No pistol shrimp or any bad critters. And wasn’t much die off so it’s in my tank in two weeks.
 

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ShawnM24

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This stuff certainly isn’t cheap but I went with the unique corals premium rock. I got ten lbs of it and got three big and very porous pieces. I asked for branching as much as possible and that’s what they sent. Can in quiet colorful. No pistol shrimp or any bad critters. And wasn’t much die off so it’s in my tank in two weeks.
Just ordered mine got 25lbs should be here Tuesday can’t wait. How has yours done?
 
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john90009

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Just ordered mine got 25lbs should be here Tuesday can’t wait. How has yours done?
On mine there was three fireworms that I counted which to me those aren’t pests. There was some sponge dieoff that gave off a slight smell. I kept it all in a storage container with water a heater and powerhead. The coralline died off but I’d rather let that happen then add it to my tank that has coral and fish. I did take smaller pieces which didn’t have much smell and I threw them in my tank. The curing rock never registered ammonia while it cured but I wanted to be safe.
 

ShawnM24

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On mine there was three fireworms that I counted which to me those aren’t pests. There was some sponge dieoff that gave off a slight smell. I kept it all in a storage container with water a heater and powerhead. The coralline died off but I’d rather let that happen then add it to my tank that has coral and fish. I did take smaller pieces which didn’t have much smell and I threw them in my tank. The curing rock never registered ammonia while it cured but I wanted to be safe.
I am going the same this I have a tank set up to cure for a week or two can’t wait to get it tomorrow like a kid at Christmas lol
 

Bpb

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To be honest there's more benefit to using real ocean harvested live rock than just bypassing the ugly stage. Many many many dry-rock tanks struggle for up to a couple years before corals will just thrive with ease, even under less than optimal husbandry. It takes time, frequent coral addition, and a bit of luck to develop a healthy amount of biodiversity that coral tends to appreciate. Using ocean rock skips all of that instantly in my experience and the experience of friends locally. I've only ever used Tampa Bay Saltwater personally. Yes, you run the risk of some nuisance critters like isopods, predatory/carnivorous crabs, mantis shrimp, and bobbit worms to name just a few, but pests of many kinds are all but unavoidable on a long enough timeline. Unless you're running an actual commercial level aquaculture style quarantine system, something will eventually sneak through. Life finds a way. I believe the move toward dry rock is the single biggest contributor to why many new hobbyists struggle now as opposed to some decades ago.
 
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How much percent of space do you think your corals take up in your aquarium?

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