Returning to Reef Aquariums - Looking for advice

BlueFish1

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Greetings Everyone!

Long time R2R lurker, but first time posting.

After a long hiatus of experimenting with other tanks (Freshwater, Cichlids, and even a eventually failing Biopod), Ive made my way back to reef tanks. To give you a brief rundown of my setup:

Fluval Flex Saltwater 32.5gal AIO
Fluval PS1 Skimmer (still breaking in - microbubbles present)
Carribsea Life Rock
Carribsea Fiji Pink sand

My tank has been running for a little over 3 weeks now, the cycle has finished (ammonia spike, nitrite spike, now zero), and i've got little patches of diatoms starting to pop up on the sand, which tells me it its time for a cleanup crew. I don't want to just dump a bunch of snails and crabs in there and hope for the best (like buy a CUC pack from a vendor/store), so I'm looking for suggestions on what the pros think would be a good start for CUC additions, and how many?

I'll be glad to provide any additional info as needed~

Thanks again!
 
Mega Meltdown After Sale

kyleinpdx

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Greetings Everyone!

Long time R2R lurker, but first time posting.

After a long hiatus of experimenting with other tanks (Freshwater, Cichlids, and even a eventually failing Biopod), Ive made my way back to reef tanks. To give you a brief rundown of my setup:

Fluval Flex Saltwater 32.5gal AIO
Fluval PS1 Skimmer (still breaking in - microbubbles present)
Carribsea Life Rock
Carribsea Fiji Pink sand

My tank has been running for a little over 3 weeks now, the cycle has finished (ammonia spike, nitrite spike, now zero), and i've got little patches of diatoms starting to pop up on the sand, which tells me it its time for a cleanup crew. I don't want to just dump a bunch of snails and crabs in there and hope for the best (like buy a CUC pack from a vendor/store), so I'm looking for suggestions on what the pros think would be a good start for CUC additions, and how many?

I'll be glad to provide any additional info as needed~

Thanks again!
I know you said you didnt want to purchase a "pack" but it'll save you money and frustration IMO. Go see ReefCleaners (here is a suggestion) they'll take care of you. $36bucks w/ free shipping, they've got the best prices around.
 

fcmatt

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I would just add one or two snails and 1 or 2 small crabs in shells (i forget their names) and do it slowly. Your tank is small. You don't need a whole army.
 
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BlueFish1

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I know you said you didnt want to purchase a "pack" but it'll save you money and frustration IMO. Go see ReefCleaners (here is a suggestion) they'll take care of you. $36bucks w/ free shipping, they've got the best prices around.
First, thanks for the recommendation on the website! That's a pretty stellar price! My only complaint about cleaner packs as they seems to contain a LOT MORE than one would actually need for the gallon size listed. That one pack has over 62 animals for a 30 gallon tank. To me, that sounds like overkill, especially for a new tank, but thats why I'm here asking. :p

As far as what others have suggested:

It does seem like the common suggestion is just a couple snails and a couple hermits to start off. I want to do this right and will be stocking very slowly. Probably another 4 weeks before I add a fish or two, then another month or two before I start adding corals. So to kind of aggregate the feedback thus far, would it be fair to say this would be a good start?

2x Ceriths
2x Nassarius
2x hermits
 

kyleinpdx

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First, thanks for the recommendation on the website! That's a pretty stellar price! My only complaint about cleaner packs as they seems to contain a LOT MORE than one would actually need for the gallon size listed. That one pack has over 62 animals for a 30 gallon tank. To me, that sounds like overkill, especially for a new tank, but thats why I'm here asking. :p

As far as what others have suggested:

It does seem like the common suggestion is just a couple snails and a couple hermits to start off. I want to do this right and will be stocking very slowly. Probably another 4 weeks before I add a fish or two, then another month or two before I start adding corals. So to kind of aggregate the feedback thus far, would it be fair to say this would be a good start?

2x Ceriths
2x Nassarius
2x hermits
I hear you on the amount, it does seem like a lot, I tend to purchase 75-80% of their recommended amount, so perhaps look at their 20 gallon pack. With that said, it also takes a lot more CUC than one might think, the stomach of a snail is only so large.

I have probably 1 CUC member per gallon of total system volume. IMO you'll want a lot more than the 6 you have listed. For comparison, my CUC is probably 70% ceriths (mix of dwarf and florida) 15% nassarius, 10% nerites and misc snails and a few hermits that are banished to the refugium.
 

lion king

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The biggest mistake a new reefer makes is this cuc scam. Only add a few becuse if you follow the equation the sellers give you, you'll jsut end up with a bunch of dead stuff. They need to eat, and I'm sure you don't want to feed a cuc. The purpose of a cuc is to help out, add what you need for a specific task. Dead cuc will pollute your tank, which in turn means more algae.

Ceriths are the best 1st snail, because they take care of the diatoms. You don't need hermits or nassarius until you are feeding fish, they eat uneaten meaty fish food. Astreas are good when start getting some green algae.
 

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