What's Your Favorite Thing About Real Live Rock??

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livinlifeinBKK

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So most people use live maricultured or wild collected rock primarily for the biodiversity it introduces into the tank but is there another reason you prefer to use it as well? I'm all for the biodiversity personally both macrofauna and microfauna and I love watching little animals like feather dusters grow up from nowhere! I al so feel it jumpstarts stability in a newer system by partly by helping to establish as natural a microbiome as possible...what's your favorite thing about using live rock if you do use it?
 
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vlangel

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My live rock is 20+ years old when it was still authentic rock taken from the ocean, (although I do not endorse pillaging our oceans to get live rock). Anyway, the initial kick start and later stability that live rock gives to a system is priceless. The BioLife is so much more diversified if live rock is used. I have never had the dreaded dinos and I think that is in part to the BioLife on the live rock.
 
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ReefGeezer

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For a new tank, I like that I have a good chance of selecting for a desirable biome that exists in the ocean where the live rock was cultured rather than hoping nature, or some unknown bottle of supposed bacteria, will do so. I like adding sponges, tube worms, copepods, critters, and etc. I like the Coralline strains it brings. I like not having to deal with the "ugly stage". I like not worrying about bound phosphate.
 
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livinlifeinBKK

livinlifeinBKK

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For a new tank, I like that I have a good chance of selecting for a desirable biome that exists in the ocean where the live rock was cultured rather than hoping nature, or some unknown bottle of supposed bacteria, will do so. I like adding sponges, tube worms, copepods, critters, and etc. I like the Coralline strains it brings. I like not having to deal with the "ugly stage". I like not worrying about bound phosphate.
Yeah the ugly stage has been nonexistent for me since I use live rock and sand (although I've heard the live sand is sometimes a sham but we'll see since I'm starting a 5 gallon pico with real live rock but completely dry sand)
 

mrbiggs1986

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My tank is 7 months old and coraline is coming in quite nicely. I started with dry rock in the display and 20 lbs of Tampa bay saltwater rock in my sump. My friend started a month before me with 100% dry rock and battled all kinds of demons I didn't have to deal with. His tank is starting to clear up but for the last 3-4 months it’s been a mess and a lot of maintenance. I’m pretty new to the hobby but I can’t see starting another tank without putting aquacultured rock in my sump.
 

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LeannaBanana

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For me it was a mix -- I knew it'd speed up my cycle (took the uglies to next to nothing in my youngest tank), but really the cool stuff that came with it is the best part. Not all hitchhikers are great, but I was prepared to trap/stalk until I got any baddies out. (In my case very few, thankfully!) I even had some cute little "star corals" survive (I don't know if that's the real name, that's what I call it). We're months and months down the timeline and I'm still finding cool stuff I hadn't seen before.
 

Pkunk35

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The natural look of the shape of real live rock can’t be recreated. It pretty much always looks good or realistic even if only a single piece.

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JoJosReef

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I love it. Love the good/neutral hitchhikers. Love the look. Love the coraline. Love the lack of uglies (or minimization). Any tank I have going forward is going to have rocks and sand pulled right from the ocean (sustainably, a la TBS).

I do not love my nemesis, Mr. Eunice worm. That guy gives me the willies.
 
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wtdenk

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The amount of life is very fascinating and amazing. I started my tank with dry rock that I sculpted and glued to make my ideal scape. I later added some Tampa Bay Saltwater rock and sand. I find myself looking at those pieces of ocean rock like I do my coral. They hold my attention without any corals attached.
 
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Pkunk35

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That's a NICE looking chunk of live rock in the first pic! Where's it from out of curiosity?

australian LR from Unique Corals. Great stuff and shape, you don’t need a lot to fill up some space bc so porous but it’s still gonna be $300 for 10lbs

My first piece of Fiji LR was 10lbs and $70 in 1998 and my parents thought I was crazy back then to buy it. we used to have it so good with Fiji, we never knew how good!
 

schooncw

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Most of the live rock in my system, is 30 years or so old and I have never started a tank without live rock.
So many of the "modern" reefers today squirm at the possibility of a single aiptasia, it's laughable. They freak out about how much magic to add, from this bottle and that bottle and wonder why they encounter so many problems, when all one has to do to properly cycle a tank and set yourself up for success, is to add Live Rock and ghost feed.
 
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