Nursing a reef tank back to life..

Discussion in 'New to Saltwater & Reef Aquariums? Post Here' started by audikers, Nov 21, 2017.

  1. audikers

    audikers Active Member

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    OK. So my fiance and I split back in June and when I moved out I left our tank with him. Fast forward and I finally realize that he hasnt been taking care of it and now I would say 75% of the corals and fish that were in there are dead. I am super upset about it and now I need to nurse what is left back to health. I am looking for advice on what I should do to hopefully encourage the growth of everything. I dont even know what is left alive in there or not because everything has just slowly shrunk down to almost nothing. I know I still have a few zoas, and a few mushrooms, but everything has shrunk so much I dont know what I do or dont have living anymore....

    I even had a Valentini Puffer that is gone. When I asked him about it he had NO idea it was even missing. :(

    I will start by doing 10-15% water changes weekly. I am pretty sure he wasn't doing water changes.

    It is a 33 gallon tank with a sump.
    NO I have not tested all the parameters yet, I will be doing that tomorrow. I JUST moved it and wanted it to have a day to settle before testing everything. Plus I am sure moving it will kick start a cycle.

    Any advice is welcome.
     
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  2. saltyfilmfolks

    saltyfilmfolks Lights! Camera! Reef! Reef Squad Leader Photo of the Month Award Reef Squad R2R Excellence Award Build Thread Contributor

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    Keep putting in some dr tims. Run some gfo and gac. If you have a reactor or canister use it. Floss and Chem media only.

    Besides that.
    Your on the right track.
     
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  3. audikers

    audikers Active Member

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    Ok I need plain english. I am still fairly new to this, and my fiance and I had great combined knowledge, but some things he knew and I didnt. What is Dr. Tims? That is something I am pretty sure I do not have. I know that there are bio balls in the sump,
     
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  4. saltyfilmfolks

    saltyfilmfolks Lights! Camera! Reef! Reef Squad Leader Photo of the Month Award Reef Squad R2R Excellence Award Build Thread Contributor

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    Ah got it.
    Gradual activated carbon. Granular ferric oxide.
    There are products that contain both too
    Dr tims is a bacterial additive. Bio spira is another. A mini cycle is actually the release of ammoina.
    The bottled bacteria will prevent that.
    Most call a mini cycle the alge bloom. Thats from the release of nutrients from the sand as rocks being moved and stirring up funk.

    The carbon will pull a lot or these things out , the gfo will pull a lot of the rest out.
    A canister or small reactor will make them work more efficenty and easier to change. You can also put them in a high flow area or on the return pump in a media bag.
    The floss is to pull out big pieces of funky stuff that the other two can't handle.
     
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  5. saltyfilmfolks

    saltyfilmfolks Lights! Camera! Reef! Reef Squad Leader Photo of the Month Award Reef Squad R2R Excellence Award Build Thread Contributor

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    You may want to imo , remove the bio balls. Long story , but the sump will be easier to clean Esp as your rehabbing the tank. All the stuff you Clean, will wind up down there. The balls just collect it and hold it.

    So to make it not so much work for you, you should just be able to scrub and use a turkey baster and let the rerturn pump pull it out and then do weekly water changes.
    In a 30 gal. A 5 gal weekly should be fine.

    An ammoina badge is cheap , you Amy want one for just in case.
     
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  6. Wiz

    Wiz Valuable Member Build Thread Contributor

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    That pretty much covers it. Clean out what you can for a time then return to normal care routine. Stability is always the most important. The testing is going to be annoying for a while. But if you are thorough and consistent it will pay off. Unfortunately there is no short cut for finding your tanks (new) needs. Testing, testing, testing :( good luck :)
     
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  7. Wiz

    Wiz Valuable Member Build Thread Contributor

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    Agree with this so much! A good flow and little debris is ideal in my opinion. Greatly decreases waste pockets.
     
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  8. Cronicreefer

    Cronicreefer Active Member

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    I think water changes are your best friend at this point along with a high quality carbon to remove toxins. I would do daily watet changes if possible till your parameters reach more acceptable levels. If you have space in the sump to grow chaeto I would recommend doing that as well. It will suck up a lot of excess nutrients from the water.
     
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  9. audikers

    audikers Active Member

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    There is already a piece in there. I just need to hang a grow light over it. There used to be one, and that along with everything else became negelected.
     
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  10. audikers

    audikers Active Member

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    When I get home from work in the morning I will post pictures of my sump. Im not 100% sure what he has going on down there, but I bet you could tell me by looking at a picture. It is not a drilled tank so it has a HOB overflow box and return.
     
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  11. saltyfilmfolks

    saltyfilmfolks Lights! Camera! Reef! Reef Squad Leader Photo of the Month Award Reef Squad R2R Excellence Award Build Thread Contributor

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    Cool.
    I'll keep a lookout for it.
    Also , tag me with an @saltyfilmfolks
    Some of the notices are slow.
     
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