How do I know if my tank is stable?

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My tank is 1 month and 1 week since restarting it. I bleach dipped all of my previous live rock for 10 seconds and aquascaped it dry for a week. So nothing was living.

I added 100lbs of oolite live sand unrinsed. I used some bottled bacteria too.

I have 7 tangs ranging from small to large. About 22 fish total (10 small chromis, 4 clowns,

For filteration I use 5 micron yes, 5 micron socks changed daily. Protein skimmer. Water changes with NSW monthly.

I added a lot of LPS corals last week and my nitrates are 0.5ppm. I’m getting more reagents for phosphates, but those should be pretty low as well.


I want to know what I’m waiting for. I really like clams. They are my favorite creature, but I read they need mature and stable tanks.

I don’t have coralline algae yet, but I’m maintaining my alk at 8dkh and calcium at 450.

My tank seems really stable. Very very little algae. Only on the back wall and a tiny bit on some rocks.

How can I know if the tank is ready for a clam?

The LFS said my tank was “too clean” based on the testing machine they used. I will attach a picture of the LFS’s test results but these numbers aren’t accurate because their machine has +/-15% for calcium, mag, and nitrates.
 
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Jekyl

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In my mind stability comes around the same time the uglies are over with and coraline is growing. Usually around the 6 month to a year area.

Edit: unless tank was started with mature rock
 
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Miami Reef

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In my mind stability comes around the same time the uglies are over with and coraline is growing. Usually around the 6 month to a year area.

Edit: unless tank was started with mature rock
I don’t have uglies. I used to have a little bit cyano...but it’s all gone. No diatoms anymore either. It was a very small small ugly stage.
 
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Miami Reef

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Here are recent pictures of the tank.
7732E19C-F141-4541-8E6E-2371C3A7DFBF.jpeg
56C6A366-6942-4517-9A77-F8F798624B15.jpeg
F694D427-0553-46E1-B84F-1EAA020F1BBC.jpeg
 
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Tundra Cuttle

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A month isn't very long just wait. Uglies are probably still around the corner make sure that phosphate is maintaining. A month isn't very long for bacterial competition to settle in to a balance either. Clams need particulate in the water so if you get small clams that need to eat those 5 micron socks won't be good for it. Your tank is cycled but balance comes with time and I'm not sure if there is a substitute.
 

LordofCinder

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I got my clam a month after my tank finished cycling, I've had it since November and its doing fine, its my favorite thing in the tank. Looking back, I might have waited a bit longer, but sometimes you have to scratch that itch. Research and proper preparation is great, but experience is really the best. You can spend a year preparing your tank and a new clam might still die in days just because you received an inferior clam, know what I mean?
 
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Dkmoo

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For dead/dry rocks with that much size and volume, it will take between 8-10 months for the nutrients to saturate into the pores and sand. Only then will you have a true picture of how yiur nutrient cycle and biological filtration is doing. All the "stable" params your test kit may show now is not really going to give you a full picture. Think of yiur rock/sand as "fresh diapers" now. When they are full is when your get the last round of uglies and past that is when your biological filtration is truly considered mature and tank considered stable.

Your outside mechanical filtration "ie socks" may actually be slowing this process down. Its a trade off you have to be OK with - either "smaller" peaks and valleys in terms of the various uglies phase you have to go true but a longer maturation period, or a bigger peak/Valley uglies phase but shorter maturation period.
 

Jekyl

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Or you could take advice
For dead/dry rocks with that much size and volume, it will take between 8-10 months for the nutrients to saturate into the pores and sand. Only then will you have a true picture of how yiur nutrient cycle and biological filtration is doing. All the "stable" params your test kit may show now is not really going to give you a full picture. Think of yiur rock/sand as "fresh diapers" now. When they are full is when your get the last round of uglies and past that is when your biological filtration is truly considered mature and tank considered stable.

Your outside mechanical filtration "ie socks" may actually be slowing this process down. Its a trade off you have to be OK with - either "smaller" peaks and valleys in terms of the various uglies phase you have to go true but a longer maturation period, or a bigger peak/Valley uglies phase but shorter maturation period.
This. Just winging it or saying the heck with experienced information is not the way to go.
 
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Miami Reef

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It means you think so hard and so long about something and receive 100 different ways to do something that in the end you end up doing nothing at all.
Can I ask what you imply when you say nothing at all? Are you saying that people get much advice to do something but they choose not to do anything at all because they are overwhelmed?

I don’t mind waiting. I’m just a little confused about why there will be another ugly stage. I like to think of algae as a cause and effect. Nitrates and phosphates high = algae.

Im kind of scratching my head on why I’m going to get algae.

I have the 5 micron socks and I really don’t want to remove them. They are part of my ich management experiment.
 

Tundra Cuttle

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Can I ask what you imply when you say nothing at all? Are you saying that people get much advice to do something but they choose not to do anything at all because they are overwhelmed?

I don’t mind waiting. I’m just a little confused about why there will be another ugly stage. I like to think of algae as a cause and effect. Nitrates and phosphates high = algae.

Im kind of scratching my head on why I’m going to get algae.

I have the 5 micron socks and I really don’t want to remove them. They are part of my ich management experiment.
It's not just high nitrate and phosphate the generate algae, it can happen if you don't have something competing with the nuisance algae for their share of the nutrients and in reef keeping there is a delay to things.
 
AS
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