Maggie's 20g long Nano build

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Mhamilton0911

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Hello all reef builders!! I'm making a build thread to track my own progress with this tank and perhaps get some input along the way!

This tank just recently started life, about 6 months ago I bought the tank and stand, and planted it up for a large colony of freshwater cherry shrimp. I've had the colony almost 2 years, and I was hoping to make this tank a green paradise for them. I succeeded, fast. Somehow along the way I got a little bored of it. At the time this tank was the 4th planted freshwater. So this idea struck me.... saltwater. I felt the 20g long was an OK size to start with, and I have an abundance of time. I began reading and researching. I started collecting more equipment. Now I've got a tank full of salty water and a few rocks. And now it's a hurry up and wait kind of party!

Before
20210703_081442.jpg


After
20210712_134150.jpg

I'm still waiting on a few things, testing kits, another circulation pump, lighting. But those sound start arriving in the next day or so. Really at this point it's a wait thing. :) I do plan on getting a few more live rock pieces today, to try to even out the color different in the dry/live rock. I know eventually it will look more even, but there will be a long time of it looking like this, and my ocd will freak out. So off to the lfs!
 
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MnFish1

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Hello all reef builders!! I'm making a build thread to track my own progress with this tank and perhaps get some input along the way!

This tank just recently started life, about 6 months ago I bought the tank and stand, and planted it up for a large colony of freshwater cherry shrimp. I've had the colony almost 2 years, and I was hoping to make this tank a green paradise for them. I succeeded, fast. Somehow along the way I got a little bored of it. At the time this tank was the 4th planted freshwater. So this idea struck me.... saltwater. I felt the 20g long was an OK size to start with, and I have an abundance of time. I began reading and researching. I started collecting more equipment. Now I've got a tank full of salty water and a few rocks. And now it's a hurry up and wait kind of party!

Before
20210703_081442.jpg


After
20210712_134150.jpg

I'm still waiting on a few things, testing kits, another circulation pump, lighting. But those sound start arriving in the next day or so. Really at this point it's a wait thing. :) I do plan on getting a few more live rock pieces today, to try to even out the color different in the dry/live rock. I know eventually it will look more even, but there will be a long time of it looking like this, and my ocd will freak out. So off to the lfs!
Very nice, I like the 'open look' and the minimalist look. As you add corals, etc - and they grow - it will fill out nicely! Uneven color in the rock promotes interest. Nice job. Good Luck!
 
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Thank you! I spent about an hour moving those rocks until they 'clicked' together. I can only image how long it takes to do this to a much larger tank! In the waiting meantime, I'm reading about all the coral types.
 
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I recieved my light today and wow what a difference!!

So far I have it on 1% whites and 20% blues. Not mounted yet as I literally just unpacked it. I need to run to the hardware store for some ceiling hooks. Fortunately I'm in an old house and the roof is tongue and groove wood underneath the sheet rock so anywhere I hang will be strong enough.
 

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Update..
Got the light mounted, and so far I like it. However I know nothing on lights so what do I know? It seems so bright! I need to look into lighting schedules.

Also today I pulled each live rock out and removed every vermetid snail I could find. Those are annoying, didn't realize what they were when I first added the rock.

Currently going through more ugly stage, lol.
 

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Reef Chasers Aquaculture

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Yes, currently I have it set on 10% blue and 1% whites. I thought much higher would just fuel nuisance algea? At 100% on both channels it's crazy intense. I need to figure out how to get my hands on a par meter.
I think you shouldn't worry too much about nuisance algae. As long as you are using RODI water and are very good with water changes, you should be fine. You could also add some utility fish/inverts like emerald crabs or lawnmower blennies to take care of any algae. Starting low and slowly ramping up the lights to find a sweet spot would be ideal. You could monitor your corals and see how they react to different light intensities. I use zoanthids to measure this (because I don't have access to a PAR meter). If the zoas are stretching, not enough light. If they're losing color, too much light
 
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A few updated pictures...
Full tank shot, I'm in need of a proper yellow filter, I took all these with yellow safety glasses, lol.
20210823_170910.jpg
 

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Mhamilton0911

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Not much has changed. I have a couple rocks seeding for another project, added a royal gramma, love it. Basically I've just been tweaking frag locations to try to get the best position for each type. I'm figuring out that I love ricordea mushrooms, and the goni for sure. The rock flower anemones are pretty cool too, I could see a whole tank just for them!

20210920_081954.jpg
 
Lazy's Coral House
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Really nice looking tank! I've always struggled with the aquascape part of this hobby, it always just looks like a giant pile of rocks when I'm done. This looks great.
Thanks! I really liked the ease of the dry rocks, very easy to find a way for each to lock together, like a puzzle. Then I scouted the lfs to find a few 'bridge' type live rocks. I'm thankful to the live rocks for the biodiversity and the instant cycle they produced, but they are not the prettiest. Much more solid than the holey dry rock, and when broken, look like red clay brick? At least the one rock that I tried to break was red inside.

For my next tank, I will be using all dry rock to start. But that's a while down the road.
 
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I finally did a thing! I cut my first coral off the plug.... and glued it to another rock. Whoa, I know?! I feel so dedicated now.

First victim was a pretty goni. I chose a frag rubble rock that had a divot that was almost the size of the goni. I like it, goni is back out and pretty so I'm taking this as a success!

Everybody has a first time, lol.
 

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A couple weeks ago I added a canister filter to eventually replace my hob filter. I know most don't use canisters, but I do on my planted tanks and love them. I also preferred the spray bar that I can turn for a widespread flow. I also hated the amount of bubbles the hob waterfall produced, even when really full. So yesterday I fully removed the hob. It looks so much better in there! The canister filter I got had the heater in the filter, so in the tank it looks much cleaner.
 

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I spotted an aiptasia on the underside of a frag plug so I quickly cut the frag off, it's chilling in the sand right now, I'm deciding where to put it.
20210927_092833.jpg




And also, here's just a fun picture I liked.
20210927_092853.jpg
 
Tidal Gardens
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New addition! Not sure on the color though? Really white,transparent with barely pink tips. Pink/ red foot. I'll take more pictures once it settles. I figured now was a good time to get an anemone of I still wanted one, before I start gluing all the frags down.

20210928_113706.jpg
 

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My first real disaster!

Pretty nem..... sucked into filter inlet. Very far from any impeller, but the poor thing was really sucked in. Over a couple hours I gently pulled most out, but then decided to cut the plastic and make it happen.

I'm preparing for a water change, going to add carbon.... but don't know what to do with this anemone now.... I have it isolated floating in the tank for warmth.
 

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Orphek OR3 reef aquarium LED lighting

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