Beginner Reef Tank Questions

GP0801

New member
Hey guys, so I've wanted an aquarium for about 10 years now but just never got into the hobby because I was always so busy with work/life. I've got much more stability in my schedule now though so I'm thinking December I'm finally going to give it a shot. Just to give you an idea of where I stand, clownfish and yellow tangs are hands down my favorite fish. I've spent the last month researching and studying the needs of tangs which is how I came to the decision of getting the Reefer 750 XXL. I felt like it would provide me enough space for the fish I want as well as the corals.

I've decided to slowly accumulate equipment until it's time to buy the tank. Any suggestions or recommendations on what I should buy or read more about? I also have yet to learn about the purpose of a refugium or why we should have one so I'll be reading about that later today as well.

As far as my goals with the tank in terms of livestock

-Pair of Clownfish
-Pair of Cleaner Shrimp
-1 Yellow Tang
-1 Yellow Watchman Goby
-1 Hippo Tang
-1 Powder Blue Tang (This one is a big maybe due to tank size)
-Maybe a Royal Gramma
-Various Soft and LPS Corals

Does that seem like an okay list for a tank of that size? It's roughly 160 gallon DT, 40 gallon Sump, 6 feet long and 2 feet wide. I know its going to take quite a few months before I can add fish and I'm okay with that. I'd like to get comfortable with maintaining a running tank for a few months first.

Also I'd appreciate any advice or suggestions on alternative tanks, equipment, livestock or anything in between. Thanks.

I forgot to mention I also read about the Blue Tang and PBT being major Ich magnets so I'll need some advice on QT procedures as well. I'd like to avoid any possibility of having Ich in the DT.
 

Vinny Kreyling

Premium Member
Sounds like a plan. You will need in no particular order:
RO unit, Auto top off, return pump, under tank I'd use a DC model oversized because they don't like hear pressure. A heater ON A CONTROLLER like a Ranco. If you like the style of light that rests on legs I suggest Ocean Revive T-247, inexpensive & THEY WORK, you will need 3, they can also be hung. A protein skimmer & test kits, Salifert, NYOS, or RED SEA.
That should give you a good start.
 

GP0801

New member
Sounds like a plan. You will need in no particular order:
RO unit, Auto top off, return pump, under tank I'd use a DC model oversized because they don't like hear pressure. A heater ON A CONTROLLER like a Ranco. If you like the style of light that rests on legs I suggest Ocean Revive T-247, inexpensive & THEY WORK, you will need 3, they can also be hung. A protein skimmer & test kits, Salifert, NYOS, or RED SEA.
That should give you a good start.

Thank you for the reply, yeah actually one of the first things I wanted to do when I got the tank was to set up a mixing station and automate as much as possible. I'm thinking of using the Apex with a Dos for auto water changes and the Tunze Osmilator for ATO top offs. Still haven't figured out exactly how I want it to be done though but that's the rough plan. I picked up some ReefLed 90s that I came across so I'm going to be running 4 of those. I still have to decide on a return pump though so I'll look into that.
 

Sk8r

Staff member
RC Mod
Consider instead of the hippo tang (named for a reason) a couple of chalk basslets, or a dwarf angel, a jawfish, or---there are a lot of very flashy fish that don't grow so large.
 

GP0801

New member
Consider instead of the hippo tang (named for a reason) a couple of chalk basslets, or a dwarf angel, a jawfish, or---there are a lot of very flashy fish that don't grow so large.

Well it's a 6 foot long tank and I'm not really thinking of putting in a ton of other fish (most likely won't be getting a PBT because of their aggressive tendencies) so I figured the blue tang might be okay?
 

five.five-six

Premium Member
Well it's a 6 foot long tank and I'm not really thinking of putting in a ton of other fish (most likely won't be getting a PBT because of their aggressive tendencies) so I figured the blue tang might be okay?


6' is big enough for the PBT, the problem with powder blue is their temperament and their susceptibility to ick I currently have one with 2X yellow and 2X purple and they bicker like siblings but not too bad. 6' tank.

I bought my PBT used with a purple and a yellow. Success rate with LFS PBT IMO is about 10%
 

GP0801

New member
6' is big enough for the PBT, the problem with powder blue is their temperament and their susceptibility to ick I currently have one with 2X yellow and 2X purple and they bicker like siblings but not too bad. 6' tank.

I bought my PBT used with a purple and a yellow. Success rate with LFS PBT IMO is about 10%

Yeah from what I read I was excited because everyone seemed to agree that 6' was good for a PBT and I love the way the fish looks but I'm just not okay with taking the chance of having a highly aggressive fish in the tank. The part that concerned me the most was the amount of people that said their PBT was fine for years and then just snapped one day and started killing things. :confused:
 

five.five-six

Premium Member
Also, +1 on RO/DI it will improve the quality of your sea life and save you time and frustration in the long run.

You don’t have to buy a Cadillac but do not buy one of the chepo amazon units with proprietary elements. BRS has some good value units. I’ve been doing this fish stuff for a minute or two and at this point I only use spectrapure. IMO it’s the best value for a host of reasons


Also, I store water in a 32 gallon brute trash can with lid. I’ve been using the same trash can for almost 20 years.

I keep it topped off with one of these, they last about 10 years with RODI, about 3 years with tap water or 6 months with kalkwasser
https://www.bulkreefsupply.com/adju...VzVxsvM_TQi_l6BowBDDFpt9GjY7BXmBoCMyEQAvD_BwE
 

five.five-six

Premium Member
By the way, what other fish would work well with my current list and corals?


There are a lot of fish that would fit nicely. Be patient and see what comes up on the used market, clowns are pretty durable but for everything else I just bide my time and see what comes up in the "œgetting out" sales. Used fish are my favorite.
 

Timfish

Timfish
Premium Member
Welcome to Reef Central!

I'm sure you're familiar with the basic nitrogen cycle but as typically presented that only deals with dissolved inorganic nitrogen. Research has shown teh various forms of dissolved organic carbon (DOC) has critical and conflicting roles in the health of corals. An excellent introduction to these roles is Forest ROhwer's "Coral Reefs in the Microbial Seas" Here are some links you might find informative also:


"Coral Reefs in the Microbial Seas" (while this video follows much of the research presented in Rohwer's book there is stuff not covered and new stuff added).
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-R2BMEfQGjU

Changing Seas - Mysterious Microbes
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c7hsp0dENEA

Nitrogen cycling in hte coral holobiont
https://youtu.be/DWItFGRQJL4

BActeria and Sponges
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-oLDclO7UcM

Maintenance of Coral Reef Health (refferences at the end)
https://youtu.be/dGIPveFJ_0Q

Optical Feedback Loop in Colorful Coral Bleaching
https://youtu.be/oadKezUYkJE

Richard Ross What's up with phosphate"
https://youtu.be/ZRIKW-9d2xI
 

GP0801

New member
Welcome to Reef Central!

I'm sure you're familiar with the basic nitrogen cycle but as typically presented that only deals with dissolved inorganic nitrogen. Research has shown teh various forms of dissolved organic carbon (DOC) has critical and conflicting roles in the health of corals. An excellent introduction to these roles is Forest ROhwer's "Coral Reefs in the Microbial Seas" Here are some links you might find informative also:


"Coral Reefs in the Microbial Seas" (while this video follows much of the research presented in Rohwer's book there is stuff not covered and new stuff added).
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-R2BMEfQGjU

Changing Seas - Mysterious Microbes
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c7hsp0dENEA

Nitrogen cycling in hte coral holobiont
https://youtu.be/DWItFGRQJL4

BActeria and Sponges
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-oLDclO7UcM

Maintenance of Coral Reef Health (refferences at the end)
https://youtu.be/dGIPveFJ_0Q

Optical Feedback Loop in Colorful Coral Bleaching
https://youtu.be/oadKezUYkJE

Richard Ross What's up with phosphate"
https://youtu.be/ZRIKW-9d2xI

Thank you so much, I'm trying to learn as much as I can before I get started so I'll definitely give those a watch later today.
 

Sk8r

Staff member
RC Mod
Most of the fish we commonly keep are aggressive under three circumstances. Tank size (it's getting freakily small in here: fish grew more than anticipated); breeding (nobody loves lovers---if they're neighboring them); and competitors for the same food or resource. Blennies and gobies are bottom dwellers and glass and sand cleaners that usually don't fight. You will find that fish are more sensitive to color than you might think: a yellow fish will set off my yellow watchman, who fortunately is too small to do more than bluster. Your tank is generally more peaceful with critters with diverse feeding habits and different body motions, ie rock-pickers v surface feeders v sandsuckers v diggers, etc.
 
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