New guy - advice appreciated

Reefer Matt

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bnord

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Hey Judd, thanks for joining. And looking at your numbers in the trends I go along with the group here and say add a couple of simple fish and the clowns seem to be right.
Pay close attention to the onset of algae growth and be ready with a couple of snails, but not too many too early.
EA538CFE-F2DF-4A07-97E8-843BD92CB456.jpeg
Soft or some easy LPS coral may also bring in some bacteria and help to start your diversity. Some cheap and easy mushrooms or perhaps even a Duncan would be good starters. But Patience is a virtue in this hobby and here’s to being virtuous. Best of luck
 
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educatedreefer

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If at all possible, once your tanks is finished cycling and you’ve added clownfish or a constant nutrient source for nitrates, maybe ask a local reefing friend or your LFS for a rock or used filter material to integrate their bacterial culture into yours (in the case that you trust that their tank is pest, protazoan-free) as it’ll further jump-start your tank with nitrate-reducing bacteria culture alongside adding nitrifying bacteria culture such as Dr. Tim Aquatics One & Only, Nite Out II, Microbacter 7, etc. I find that doing this with your own tanks, if you have multiple, or a trusted established tank source, helps you avoid the “ugly phase” of tanks where you’ll see a “diatom bloom” or rapid growth of brown algae that will eventually be outcompeted by green algae which may be unpleasant for many reefers visually speaking.
I’d keep your nutrients (mostly speaking nitrates 5-15ppm and phosphates 0.03-0.1ppm) low but just performing weekly 10-20% water changes and avoid using methods such as ZeoVit, GFO, carbon-dosing as it’s very technical and encourages a can of worms of problems or imbalances. The moment you see algae growth (which is often unavoidable with most new tanks), I’d recommend getting a variety of snails and hermit crabs for your tank to consume and control rapid algae growth, but not starfish, lobsters, crabs, blennies, or tangs/rabbitfish (or at least not yet).
Try switching from API to “hobby-grade” test kits such as Salifert on Amazon!
Like what other reefers have already mentioned, keep it simple, be patient, and don’t break the bank :)
 

Shanasman450

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Hey everyone,

totally new to saltwater aquariums. I have a 75gal tank with salinity about 1.026
I’ve been cycling my tank patiently (even though I’m an impatient person) and think it’s ready for fish. First two will be clowns lol my only worry is my parameters with the nitrogen cycle. I’ve read from a load of places though that the API test kit is insanely sensitive OR pops false positives for ammonia. So I was looking to introduce myself and post test results here for the collective wisdom & advice. My name is Judd btw! Super excited to get some fish in here for my daughter to look at!!


Day 2 tests
pH ~8.3
Ammonia 2.0 ppm
Nitrite 0 ppm

Day 4 tests
pH ~8.3
Ammonia 2.0ppm
Nitrite 0ppm

Day 6 test
pH ~8.2
Ammonia 2.0ppm
Nitrite .5-1.0ppm

Day 8 test
pH 8.2
Ammonia 2.0ppm
Nitrite 2.0ppm

Day 10 test
pH ~8.2
Ammonia 1.0ppm
Nitrite 3.0ppm
Nitrate 20ppm

Day 11 test
pH ~8.3
Ammonia 0.5ppm
Nitrite 3.0-5.0ppm
Nitrate ~20ppm

Day 15 test
pH ~8.2
Ammonia .25ppm
Nitrite .50ppm
Nitrate 20ppm

Day 17 test
pH ~8.2
Ammonia .25ppm
Nitrite 0ppm
Nitrate 5.0ppm

ADDED ~2.0ppm ammonia

Day 18 test
pH ~8.2
Ammonia .25ppm
Nitrite 0ppm
Nitrate 5.0ppm

Day 23 test (Oct 11)
pH ~8.2
Ammonia .25ppm
Nitrite 0ppm
Nitrate 5ppm
If nobody else has already mentioned, the api ammonia test usually won't read less than .25ppm. I thought I still had ammonia for the longest time until I tested water from a fresh batch of saltwater and it read .25ppm. You likely have no, or negligible, ammonia, so you should be good for fish.
 
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Judson_f

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Wow you guys have been awesome already!!! Thanks for all the advice and encouraging words!! I had planned on taking everything extremely slow but with so many of you saying be ready with snails etc for algae issues I may start looking into them early now as well. Thanks a ton! And soft corals would be cool, I think I’ll keep being patient on that for a while first. But might start searching into them more. I’ll also see about getting more diverse bacteria in there I like that idea as well. I used Dr Tim’s nitrifying quick start stuff so maybe will go get another brand of the stuff too for something different. I live a little in the middle of nowhere so it’s an hour drive to the nearest LFS which even then is just a petco lol I’ve been making my own water with a 5 stage RODI and mixing salt and all that. Want to be as self sufficient as possible since I’m kinda far away from any serious help
 

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Welcome to R2R and the salty world to you and your daughter Judd. Lots of knowledgeable and helpful people here who will support and advise you when needed.
 
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Fish Think Pink

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Hey everyone,

totally new to saltwater aquariums. I have a 75gal tank with salinity about 1.026
I’ve been cycling my tank patiently (even though I’m an impatient person) and think it’s ready for fish. First two will be clowns lol my only worry is my parameters with the nitrogen cycle. I’ve read from a load of places though that the API test kit is insanely sensitive OR pops false positives for ammonia. So I was looking to introduce myself and post test results here for the collective wisdom & advice. My name is Judd btw! Super excited to get some fish in here for my daughter to look at!!


Day 2 tests
pH ~8.3
Ammonia 2.0 ppm
Nitrite 0 ppm

Day 4 tests
pH ~8.3
Ammonia 2.0ppm
Nitrite 0ppm

Day 6 test
pH ~8.2
Ammonia 2.0ppm
Nitrite .5-1.0ppm

Day 8 test
pH 8.2
Ammonia 2.0ppm
Nitrite 2.0ppm

Day 10 test
pH ~8.2
Ammonia 1.0ppm
Nitrite 3.0ppm
Nitrate 20ppm

Day 11 test
pH ~8.3
Ammonia 0.5ppm
Nitrite 3.0-5.0ppm
Nitrate ~20ppm

Day 15 test
pH ~8.2
Ammonia .25ppm
Nitrite .50ppm
Nitrate 20ppm

Day 17 test
pH ~8.2
Ammonia .25ppm
Nitrite 0ppm
Nitrate 5.0ppm

ADDED ~2.0ppm ammonia

Day 18 test
pH ~8.2
Ammonia .25ppm
Nitrite 0ppm
Nitrate 5.0ppm

Day 23 test (Oct 11)
pH ~8.2
Ammonia .25ppm
Nitrite 0ppm
Nitrate 5ppm

Welcome! Glad you joined.

Have you considered starting your build thread? I found its a great place to document my tank's evolution for myself. I started tank first then joined, so I'm still finding myself going back collecting pictures & updating historically as well as current state. Once you create your first post in your thread and link it to your account, they will give you build badge (look left, under my ID)

This might help you find people local to you:

This is a good reference book type online article I still review:
 
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Judson_f

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To all who care or see -
I took the coral advice to add more bacterial diversity. Two clowns & one mushroom tomorrow. In a twist of events - the company *who was fantastic - will elaborate more once everything arrives and all is well with a good review* said the mushroom is smaller than what they would normally sell/send. To make up for that they offered a free bonus frag. I told them hey the tank is new etc etc please keep that in mind if you do - send a tough coral that can handle young tank/novice in the hobby. So they told me they were sending a Zoa. Lol. Since then I’ve spent all day doing research and found that most Zoa’s have an undetectable amount of palytoxin and got deep into all that big controversy in the reefing hobby. I think it’ll be okay - I have a perfect SMALL rock island to put it on to keep it isolated and small. But holy cow am I nervous from those horror stories and I have my 2 y/o daughter to worry about. Not to mention spouse would KILL me if she found out I put potentially toxic stuff in the house … so blast me with all advice and personal opinions etc please already got nitrile gloves to put it in the tank should I even go through with it. I just have such a hard time turning down free
 
World Wide Corals

kevgib67

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Welcome Judd, in the mid 90’s I got into this hobby for a fish only aquarium. After going to all the lfs the corals kept catching my eye and shortly after starting I had a mixed reef tank. It’s almost inevitable. Glad you joined and wish you the best of luck. We have a saying “ only good things happen when you rush and go fast.” Wait, I think I got that wrong. Don’t take advice from me! I’ll be following your build thread.
 

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