IM 25: Third time's a charm

jamesdomini4

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This is my third attempt at reefing. The first attempt (June 2020) was a 10g petco tank with a hob filter, it was doing alright for a couple of months, and then I decided to upgrade to a 29g tank and made the 10g a sump. I learned an important lesson here: do not reuse sand, do not kick up sand if you don't have to. I reset the 29g following the WWC/BRS 4 month cycle with a dry rock + what I thought was live rock from a fellow hobbyist. I had so many issues with that tank, but I also learned the most from that tank.

Now, about this new tank. It is an innovative marine 25 lagoon. I am very excited about this tank. This will be an SPS dominant tank.

Equipment:

Tank: IM 25 lagoon
Stand: IM stand (old design)
Light: XR15 Blue G5 + diffuser
Powerheads: 2x Jebao SLW-20M
Return: Jebao DCS-2000
ATO: Icecap dual optical ATO (5g reservoir)
Reactor: IM MiniMax (will run GFO if needed)
Filter: 2x CustomCaddy (will run carbon)

Planned equipment:

Skimmer: TBD


Heater: 2 x Eheim 50w

Testing:

Alk: Hanna
Phosphate: Hanna phosphorus ULR

Livestock plan:

2x Ocellaris clownfish
1x Sixline wrasse

Rock: 20lbs from gulfliverock.com (came in today, 5/5/2021)
Substrate: CaribSea Aragonite Aquarium Sand, 10 lbs (rinsed as much as I could)

Tank maturity: I am following a modified version of the 30 day SPS tank maturity method discussed in this thread by @LegendaryCG : https://www.reef2reef.com/threads/cg’s-1-month-rapid-reef-cycle.805186/

Me drying off the tank after a deep clean (not the best placement). That took a lot of citric acid.
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Here is my tank running RODI water and getting my equipment dialed in.
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Live rock from the gulf. It stunk like a fish market. Water is a little coudy. I am doing 30% water changes to bring ammonia down.
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I have 3 clams on the top left rock. One has opened already. Hoping the others open soon.
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jamesdomini4

jamesdomini4

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I am thrilled with this live rock. I cannot capture all the colors with my phone camera. The red shown in the picture is a fluorescent red. However, there is a lot of die-off, especially worms. A lot of dead worms everywhere. I removed as much as I could and dipped the rock in 1.035 salinity water for 1 min.

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Week 1 plan:
  • Added a bag of GFO and another bag of carbon to the return. I am hoping that carbon will keep the stink down.
  • Do 30% water changes 1-2 times a day until ammonia stays below 0.25. Right now, it is sitting at around 4ppm.
  • Start dosing phytoplankton from Day 4 (if ammonia stays below 0.25).
 
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jamesdomini4

jamesdomini4

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The rock is still curing. I had to pick off a lot of dead stuff from the rocks today. All clams died overnight and a lot of dead barnacles and sponges.

I added a dose of seachem prime to bring down ammonia. It was staying at 8.0 (maxed out on API) today morning. It has come down to just under 2.0 after a series of 100% water changes.

The rocks are not smelling as horrible as they were, but it is not a pleasant smell yet. haha
 
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jamesdomini4

jamesdomini4

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Things are not going to plan! I have a bryopsis algae outbreak. They got to a digitata I had added (thankfully the frag is all good now that I manually removed the algae). I dosed fluconazole today. Hopefully bryopsis will be gone in 2 weeks.

Everything else is on track. Frags are doing good. I am dosing phyto and will seed with pods this week.

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Ugh.. this nasty stuff
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