Time to seed dry rock and order a CUC

Discussion in 'Reef Cleaners' started by PghSteeler, Mar 2, 2012.

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  1. PghSteeler

    PghSteeler Tassled File Fish

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    I just set up my 46gallon bowfront with all dryrock to make some interesting formations. I did use Caribsea Ocean Direct Livesand, not to instantly cycle since I know that it does not work that way but because I liked the appearance. I have no even begun to test paramaters yet but am not sure when to add a CUC or how to seed my rock. I do not want to spend a fortune on liverock and risk possible hitchhikers and was hoping a few rubble pieces covered in purple coraline from a lfs would suffice in spready coraline algae over my rockwork and seed some bacteria. When do I add a CUC and how do I know what to order? I want to add corals down the road, LPS and softies only, and have reef safe fish. I am afraid of getting too many critters that will starve once the algae and food sources are exhuasted and am hoping that all those snails and hermits will eat fishfood in addition to being algae grazers
     
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  3. johnmaloney

    johnmaloney 3reef Sponsor

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    Sure that would work for both bacteria and coralline introduction. After the tank is going for say a month or so, start picking up the rubble and scraping it on the other rocks every so often. It does seem to help spread the coralline a little faster to the those rocks, but it doesn't need to come in contact with it, coralline will spread via spores to every rock in your tank under the right conditions. (SOmetimes whether you like it or not :) )

    Wait until the tank is cycled and stabled, and you see algae before adding the CUC. Usually they come in that order, but not always.
     
  4. PghSteeler

    PghSteeler Tassled File Fish

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    what kind of critter should I be looked to add for a CUC? I know I have time but am curious since right now I have nothing to do but sit and wait lol
     
  5. johnmaloney

    johnmaloney 3reef Sponsor

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  6. PghSteeler

    PghSteeler Tassled File Fish

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    Hey John, its been a little while now and I think I may be ready for a CUC. Tank cycled and I added 2 small percula clowns a couple days ago. Also have a small reef hermit that was a hitchhiker on the liverock rubble. Ammonia and nitrite remain at 0 and nitrates are at 10, which I guess is good for such a new tank without a protein skimmer or sump? Stable, I think so I am having a small issue with pH and kH. The pH kept steady at 7.8 so I bought some reef buffer and dosed a few times to get it up but it keeps fluctuating between 8.0-8.2 and the kH is high at around 14. Finally algae is growing. Mostly brown algae covering the top of rockwork and some greem spots coming through. Minimal growth on substrate as well. Should I wait for the tank to be covered in algae or have a diatom bloom before adding a CUC or is it safe to add now. I would not want them to perish due to lack of food since I am feeding the clowns minimally at this point.
     
  7. PghSteeler

    PghSteeler Tassled File Fish

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    I received your email today for a custom CUC. Only question I had was about the red mangroves you suggested. I do not have a sump or fuge so they would be in the display tank. Also I only have a T8 fixture at this point, do plan on upgrading in the next couple months but not sure exactly when. Finally I do have a glass canopy which I know is ok with most plants but I thought with mangroves they need to grow out of the water and not be completely submerged. How would these work in my tank?
     
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  9. johnmaloney

    johnmaloney 3reef Sponsor

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    Small Ph fluctuations like that are normal, especially between "day" and "night" in the tank. Don't let it keep you up at night.

    Do you have diatoms yet? If not, wait until they show up, (they will), before adding the clean up crew.

    The mangroves are probably not a good fit for you then. The mangrove suggestion is just to amount for your tank, if it is clicked I send a suggestion assuming there is a place for them, like a hang on filter or some other contraption.
     
  10. PghSteeler

    PghSteeler Tassled File Fish

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    What exactly would a diatom bloom look like? I have mostly brown algae on rockwork and some on sand with some fuzzy green growth starting on the rockwork as well. I always though a diatom blood would be the green water from free floating algae.

    Also, would any macro algae work for in a DT? I know with the current T8 fixture I would probably have to wait to order any plants but am interesting in some sort plants for the tank that will be easy to control and not take everything over.
     
  11. johnmaloney

    johnmaloney 3reef Sponsor

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    it is that brown algae you are describing. Powdery rust colored brown algae is my description.
     
  12. PghSteeler

    PghSteeler Tassled File Fish

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    Well then I guess I am ready! Your suggested list to me was
    30 Dwarf Ceriths - small effective cleaners
    11 Nassarius
    12 Florida Ceriths
    9 Assorted Hermits
    4 Large Nerite and 7 Small to medium Nerites

    I was wondering if banded trochus and limpets would also be a good addition to the mix or if it would be too much. Also for plants do you ever get in Shaving Hair Brush Plants or Saltwater Fern Plants?