Ryshark’s 120-Gallon Acropora Tank

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ryshark

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I do agree with adding acros to a new system is not a good idea.

I have new dry rock BB system and introduced sps after completing 30 day cycle with a shrimp.

Then introduced 15 acro frags and all completely suffered stn.

Since then I've been dosing biodigest and vodka to increase the bacteria counts and will endeavor with some easy Montis next month.
I agree with you, a mature system is better for sure. I'm sorry you lost all 15-acros, I've definitely been down that path before. But, I still may test the waters, by adding some acros early. We'll see

With the dosing of both BioDigest and Vodka, make sure to keep an eye on your PO4 and NO3 from bottoming out.
 
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Nice! Did the acros do well for you with the tank being so young?

Yes. My tank was getting very good growth and that was with Black box LEDS as well. What ended its run was when I dosed Vibrant and Fluconazole. Completely devastated the biome for over a year and I am just now starting to recover from it.

I think it can absolutely be done especially with bacteria additives set on a weekly maintenance dosage. I do second that it is definitely more difficult than starting with all live rock because there is less margin for error. Just don't use Vibrant or any other algaecides for the first couple years because I think that is death to a system that doesn't have a mature biome.
 
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Yes. My tank was getting very good growth and that was with Black box LEDS as well. What ended its run was when I dosed Vibrant and Fluconazole. Completely devastated the biome for over a year and I am just now starting to recover from it.

I think it can absolutely be done especially with bacteria additives set on a weekly maintenance dosage. I do second that it is definitely more difficult than starting with all live rock because there is less margin for error. Just don't use Vibrant or any other algaecides for the first couple years because I think that is death to a system that doesn't have a mature biome.
Sounds like you had the same issue as me and lost all acors from algae issues. I didn't use anything like Vibrant or Fluconazole and still lost the battle.
As you mentioned, I'm going to dose bacteria additives on a weekly basis this time around. I'm going to dose MicroBacter Clean on a weekly basis. Some other things I plan to do differently this time:
Bare bottom with powerheads also on the bottom to keep detritus suspended.
Turkey baste my rocks like I used to do years ago. So much can buildup in the crevices.
I'm going to get utilitarian fish from the beginning including a Fox Face and some kind of Bristletooth Tang.
Keep up on my snails like Trochus, Astrea and a few Turbos, so I always have a lot.
 

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Sounds like you had the same issue as me and lost all acors from algae issues. I didn't use anything like Vibrant or Fluconazole and still lost the battle.
As you mentioned, I'm going to dose bacteria additives on a weekly basis this time around. I'm going to dose MicroBacter Clean on a weekly basis. Some other things I plan to do differently this time:
Bare bottom with powerheads also on the bottom to keep detritus suspended.
Turkey baste my rocks like I used to do years ago. So much can buildup in the crevices.
I'm going to get utilitarian fish from the beginning including a Fox Face and some kind of Bristletooth Tang.
Keep up on my snails like Trochus, Astrea and a few Turbos, so I always have a lot.

Yes mine was definitely an algae and bacteria issue. I could tell the life was being sucked out of the tank. Never again will I dose those two.

I think that sounds like a great plan. Once the diatoms and uglies kick in then you should be good to start adding some acros. The snails and utility fish with help with the uglies.

I need to start basting my rocks as well. Haven't done it for awhile and I need to start incorporating it before water changes.

Looking forward to following along and for the acro additions! Have any plans for acros?
 
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Yes mine was definitely an algae and bacteria issue. I could tell the life was being sucked out of the tank. Never again will I dose those two.

I think that sounds like a great plan. Once the diatoms and uglies kick in then you should be good to start adding some acros. The snails and utility fish with help with the uglies.

I need to start basting my rocks as well. Haven't done it for awhile and I need to start incorporating it before water changes.

Looking forward to following along and for the acro additions! Have any plans for acros?
Supposedly with MB Clean the ugly stage can be avoided entirely, but I wouldn't add acros in the middle of an ugly stage, I'd definitely wait for that to cleanup.

I plan to have mostly highend acros as I enjoy the collecting / lineage aspect of it. I can't wait until the day I purchase a RRU Angry Bird from TSA, thats probably #1 on my want list. But for my initial purchase (where I may be playing with fire a little bit since the tank will still be fairly new), I plan to get a BattleBox. I'll get the $400 box and ask for the least amount of acors in the box, so quality over quantity. I figure 4 healthy acros from BattleCorals which are nice acros and not just some random tester acros that I will want to get rid of later. I will request for at least 2-of the acros in the box to be rainbow tenuis.
 
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Supposedly with MB Clean the ugly stage can be avoided entirely, but I wouldn't add acros in the middle of an ugly stage, I'd definitely wait for that to cleanup.

I plan to have mostly highend acros as I enjoy the collecting / lineage aspect of it. I can't wait until the day I purchase a RRU Angry Bird from TSA, thats probably #1 on my want list. But for my initial purchase (where I may be playing with fire a little bit since the tank will still be fairly new), I plan to get a BattleBox. I'll get the $400 box and ask for the least amount of acors in the box, so quality over quantity. I figure 4 healthy acros from BattleCorals which are nice acros and not just some random tester acros that I will want to get rid of later. I will request for at least 2-of the acros in the box to be rainbow tenuis.

Skip the uglies. Is that even possible? Ok now I am anxious to see how this turns out. I would imagine every tank would go through the "uglies" once it is starting to establish. I still think it will get pretty rough with all dry rock though once the algae starts to establish. Either was this is going to be cool to see it play out with the MB Clean.

Yeah I probably wouldn't throw $400 of battle corals in during the uglies either. I don't think I would have the patience though... I did through a $1000 Battlebox in after 6 months though. They did very well.
 
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Skip the uglies. Is that even possible? Ok now I am anxious to see how this turns out. I would imagine every tank would go through the "uglies" once it is starting to establish. I still think it will get pretty rough with all dry rock though once the algae starts to establish. Either was this is going to be cool to see it play out with the MB Clean.

Yeah I probably wouldn't throw $400 of battle corals in during the uglies either. I don't think I would have the patience though... I did through a $1000 Battlebox in after 6 months though. They did very well.
I remember @gcarroll saying he never got the uglies using XLM then CLEAN on his current tank. I can't remember if it was in one of his interviews with @ReefBum or if it is on his IG.
We'll see how it goes for me now that my bacteria from this new bottle is actually doing something. I plan to dose MB Clean on a strict weekly schedule, so we'll see how it goes. Glad to hear your Battlebox did well, I've never purchased from BC yet, but looking forward to it.
Day-2 with new bottle of XLM = Ammonia 0.50 and Nitrite 0.25.
 

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I remember @gcarroll saying he never got the uglies using XLM then CLEAN on his current tank. I can't remember if it was in one of his interviews with @ReefBum or if it is on his IG.
We'll see how it goes for me now that my bacteria from this new bottle is actually doing something. I plan to dose MB Clean on a strict weekly schedule, so we'll see how it goes. Glad to hear your Battlebox did well, I've never purchased from BC yet, but looking forward to it.
Day-2 with new bottle of XLM = Ammonia 0.50 and Nitrite 0.25.
FWIW, I used Marco rock and P04 was 0 after cycling with a shrimp.

Do you plan to have a fish population before the acros?

I think the "uglies" can completely be avoided if you manage P04 as this is the underlying issue most of the time.
 

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I remember @gcarroll saying he never got the uglies using XLM then CLEAN on his current tank. I can't remember if it was in one of his interviews with @ReefBum or if it is on his IG.
We'll see how it goes for me now that my bacteria from this new bottle is actually doing something. I plan to dose MB Clean on a strict weekly schedule, so we'll see how it goes. Glad to hear your Battlebox did well, I've never purchased from BC yet, but looking forward to it.
Day-2 with new bottle of XLM = Ammonia 0.50 and Nitrite 0.25.

Looking forward to seeing how it goes. Definitely sounds like a great plan to get the bacteria and biome established quickly which is 100% the key upfront with dry rock.

I don't know if I missed it but are you running a refugium now?
 
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FWIW, I used Marco rock and P04 was 0 after cycling with a shrimp.

Do you plan to have a fish population before the acros?

I think the "uglies" can completely be avoided if you manage P04 as this is the underlying issue most of the time.
Yes, I plan to have fish before I even turn on the lights in my display. In fact, I’m going to add a fish to the rocks in the Brute trashcan after they are cycled to keep the cycle going while I finish getting my display ready. I’m thinking a Royal Gramma will be good to put in the Brute.
-it doesn’t need tons of swimming space since they usually hide in crevices.
-has a small bio load
-will end up being the first fish in my display and they are typically peaceful.
 
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Looking forward to seeing how it goes. Definitely sounds like a great plan to get the bacteria and biome established quickly which is 100% the key upfront with dry rock.

I don't know if I missed it but are you running a refugium now?
I don’t plan to run a refugium. I have a refugium section in my sump and a light since I ran a refugium before the reboot.
However, I’m going to try and not use a refugium for the reboot. If I change my mind later, I can always add it.
 
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Now I'm on Day-16 in total of dosing XLM Start and Day-8 of dosing the NEW bottles of bacteria from my 2nd order and also the bottle direct from Brightwell. The first bottle I deemed all dead bacteria since it didn't do anything. I had high hopes when I dosed the new bottle on Day-8 and finally saw ammonia go down and nitrite go up for the first time on Day-9. I was thinking, yes, this can still be a 7-Day cycle with the new bottle(s). However as of the last 4 days in a row my readings have been steady at Ammonia 0.50-0.75 and my Nitrite 1-2ppm. I've dosed extra doses of XLM from both new bottles at the recommended, but that hasn't made a difference. Maybe I don't have enough oxygen in the water or something. The pump is running 24/7 and creates a small amount of surface agitation in a circular motion.
There is no telling when the cycle may finish. I'm still sticking with only XLM Start for a little longer.
 
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Day-19 / Day-12 of dry rock cycle.
Ammonia finally bottomed out at 0.
Nitrite is High. Hard to say by the color, but my guess is 3 - 5.

This weekend I plan to drain the tank, get all the sand out and clean the sump/refugium. Hopefully start re-plumbing too. This time I'm going with the Red PVC and Gray Sch80 fittings.
 
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Day-28 since my first dose of nitrifying bacteria.

Nitrites are still 5+ppm. I've been dosing XLM on average every other day. I've tried lots of surface agitation, I've tried dosing and then turning the pump off for 24-hours to let the bacteria settle into the rocks, I've tried dosing the full recommended dosage again, I even tried a small 15% or so water change yesterday. Nothing makes a difference.

I don't know what the deal is, maybe dosing more XLM is actually counterintuitive and increases the Nitrites???
But XLM is also supposed to work for emergency ammonia and nitrite reduction. Brightwell said to me, it essentially can't be overdosed.

100lbs of rocks in like 16-gallons of water, you'd think that would be an enormous amount of surface area for the bacteria to take hold.

I guess I'm more patient than I thought..... I'm still sticking with the XLM so far.
 
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JCOLE

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Day-28 since my first dose of nitrifying bacteria.

Nitrites are still 5+ppm. I've been dosing XLM on average every other day. I've tried lots of surface agitation, I've tried dosing and then turning the pump off for 24-hours to let the bacteria settle into the rocks, I've tried dosing the full recommended dosage again, I even tried a small 15% or so water change yesterday. Nothing makes a difference.

I don't know what the deal is, maybe dosing more XLM is actually counterintuitive and increases the Nitrites???
But XLM is also supposed to work for emergency ammonia and nitrite reduction. Brightwell said to me, it essentially can't be overdosed.

100lbs of rocks in like 16-gallons of water, you'd think that would be an enormous amount of surface area for the bacteria to take hold.

I guess I'm more patient than I thought..... I'm still sticking with the XLM so far.

I agree. You have more than enough area for the bacteria to establish itself.

Hate to be that guy but are you confident in your test kit? Maybe try another kit if you have one?
 
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I agree. You have more than enough area for the bacteria to establish itself.

Hate to be that guy but are you confident in your test kit? Maybe try another kit if you have one?
I agree. You have more than enough area for the bacteria to establish itself.

Hate to be that guy but are you confident in your test kit? Maybe try another kit if you have one?
I don’t think it is my text kits. I saw 0 nitrite for a long time. As soon as I could see my ammonia going down a little, the nitrite finally started going up a little. When the ammonia reached 0, the nitrite reached its highest point. Hasn’t come down since then.
 

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Very patient. I'd be wondering how long it takes to cycle a tank with just ammonia? Hopefully that number starts to come down for ya soon. It's strange considering you are starting with clean mined rock, you'd think once it started to convert to nitrite it would just go already.
 
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Very patient. I'd be wondering how long it takes to cycle a tank with just ammonia? Hopefully that number starts to come down for ya soon. It's strange considering you are starting with clean mined rock, you'd think once it started to convert to nitrite it would just go already.
Right! I watched a video presentation of Dr. Tim saying that nitrite of 5+ can stall a cycle. That’s why I did the small water change.
The Fritz Turbo Start is still in the back of my mind. I’m also considering overdosing more XLM.
 

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Right! I watched a video presentation of Dr. Tim saying that nitrite of 5+ can stall a cycle. That’s why I did the small water change.
The Fritz Turbo Start is still in the back of my mind. I’m also considering overdosing more XLM.
My tank took 30 days to show nitrates and that was using a large shrimp and 2 bottles of Fritz 90. You are probably very near to the end and nitrates will be showing next week.

I don't think you can stall a cycle and nature will eventually do it's thing.

What I did notice is when ammonia went down, water clarity was crystal clear.
 
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My tank took 30 days to show nitrates and that was using a large shrimp and 2 bottles of Fritz 90. You are probably very near to the end and nitrates will be showing next week.

I don't think you can stall a cycle and nature will eventually do it's thing.

What I did notice is when ammonia went down, water clarity was crystal clear.
I haven’t even tested for Nitrates yet. I don’t know if I will get a false reading with the nitrites being so high. I do have Nyos and Salifert kits ready.
 
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