Coral QT

beginner_reefer

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Started a 13.5G cycling yesterday for coral quarantine. Used water from my DT to fill the QT. Added a large live dry rock that we have had along with spheres from the refugium, 1/2 bottle of Fritz Turbo start and a raw piece of jumbo shrimp straight from the coast. (1 piece we set aside that we left out to put in the QT from when we cooked shrimp the other night). Shrimp was placed a mesh bag for easier retrieval. Heater has been set to 80 degrees. Placed an amonia badge in the tank just to see. As of this morning it already shows amonia on the badge. Hope I can stand the smell!! How often should I test for amonia, nitrites and Nitrates during this cycle? Should I buy a fish to put in there with the coral when the cycle is complete or is it necessary?
 
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Apollo7235

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Started a 13.5G cycling yesterday for coral quarantine. Used water from my DT to fill the QT. Added a large live dry rock that we have had along with spheres from the refugium, 1/2 bottle of Fritz Turbo start and a raw piece of jumbo shrimp straight from the coast. (1 piece we set aside that we left out to put in the QT from when we cooked shrimp the other night). Shrimp was placed a mesh bag for easier retrieval. Heater has been set to 80 degrees. Placed an amonia badge in the tank just to see. As of this morning it already shows amonia on the badge. Hope I can stand the smell!! How often should I test for amonia, nitrites and Nitrates during this cycle? Should I buy a fish to put in there with the coral when the cycle is complete or is it necessary?
I forgot to mention that I use the ammonia badges is both of my QT’s as well; good thinking!

it usually takes a couple of days for them to ‘break in’ but I am glad yours seems to already be registering!

I wouldn’t test more than once or twice a week for the first week or two. Then, after that, I would establish a regular testing routine (mine is once every week or two, usually before water changes to make sure it’s really necessary or whenever I see a coral that isn’t thriving so I can make the necessary corrections). Some folks test more than that, but I’m not a fan of the extra work unless it’s necessary. Once your tank has established, it’s really not necessary to test for nitrite, or even ammonia for that matter. I only test for ammonia if I suspect something has died or if I see something major going on in the tank, which hasn’t happened yet.

I would imagine you can take that shrimp back out after a day or so; just ghost feed the tank with some fish or coral food every couple of days after to promote continued bacterial reproduction.

Fish aren’t necessary to cycle a tank. I personally do not keep one in my coral QT because I wouldn’t want to expose It to any encysting parasites that can come in on inverts such as ich, but that’s a personal preference.

Sounds like you’ve got a nice set-up! Great job! Good luck to you!
 
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I forgot to mention that I use the ammonia badges is both of my QT’s as well; good thinking!

it usually takes a couple of days for them to ‘break in’ but I am glad yours seems to already be registering!

I wouldn’t test more than once or twice a week for the first week or two. Then, after that, I would establish a regular testing routine (mine is once every week or two, usually before water changes to make sure it’s really necessary or whenever I see a coral that isn’t thriving so I can make the necessary corrections). Some folks test more than that, but I’m not a fan of the extra work unless it’s necessary. Once your tank has established, it’s really not necessary to test for nitrite, or even ammonia for that matter. I only test for ammonia if I suspect something has died or if I see something major going on in the tank, which hasn’t happened yet.

I would imagine you can take that shrimp back out after a day or so; just ghost feed the tank with some fish or coral food every couple of days after to promote continued bacterial reproduction.

Fish aren’t necessary to cycle a tank. I personally do not keep one in my coral QT because I wouldn’t want to expose It to any encysting parasites that can come in on inverts such as ich, but that’s a personal preference.

Sounds like you’ve got a nice set-up! Great job! Good luck to you!
Thank you and thanks again for all of your advice! Your so sweet! If the shrimp starts smelling to bad I will pull it out and just ghost feed Reef Frenzy everyother day. We will see how it goes. It's a learning process as this is the first time for a coral QT for me. Can't wait to start buying some corals!! I did order a frag rack to put them on but I'm guessing it will take a month or so to get this tank cycled. What worries me is it's so small it will probably be hard to maintain.
 
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I forgot to mention that I use the ammonia badges is both of my QT’s as well; good thinking!

it usually takes a couple of days for them to ‘break in’ but I am glad yours seems to already be registering!

I wouldn’t test more than once or twice a week for the first week or two. Then, after that, I would establish a regular testing routine (mine is once every week or two, usually before water changes to make sure it’s really necessary or whenever I see a coral that isn’t thriving so I can make the necessary corrections). Some folks test more than that, but I’m not a fan of the extra work unless it’s necessary. Once your tank has established, it’s really not necessary to test for nitrite, or even ammonia for that matter. I only test for ammonia if I suspect something has died or if I see something major going on in the tank, which hasn’t happened yet.

I would imagine you can take that shrimp back out after a day or so; just ghost feed the tank with some fish or coral food every couple of days after to promote continued bacterial reproduction.

Fish aren’t necessary to cycle a tank. I personally do not keep one in my coral QT because I wouldn’t want to expose It to any encysting parasites that can come in on inverts such as ich, but that’s a personal preference.

Sounds like you’ve got a nice set-up! Great job! Good luck to you!
I also ordered some reef snow. Wonder if I could ghost feed some of that from time to time as well.
 
RAP

Apollo7235

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Thank you and thanks again for all of your advice! Your so sweet! If the shrimp starts smelling to bad I will pull it out and just ghost feed Reef Frenzy everyother day. We will see how it goes. It's a learning process as this is the first time for a coral QT for me. Can't wait to start buying some corals!! I did order a frag rack to put them on but I'm guessing it will take a month or so to get this tank cycled. What worries me is it's so small it will probably be hard to maintain.
Mine really only took a week before I added and maintained very healthy corals. Obviously this can vary from tank to tank and I probably just got lucky, but I was very vigilant about testing my parameters and keeping everything very tightly balanced.

It does get super annoying that you have to keep topping them off every day or two, but the water changes are a breeze ;)
 
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