Concerned with my nano tank...

ultimatedc

New member
It has been running for about a week, seeded it with 10lbs of live rock. My stocking is just a few nitrite snails, a turbo snail, a camelshrimp, and a clownfish.

I understand I should've cycled but I unfortunately took LFS store advice and they told me the cycle would be complete in a week or so thanks to their cultivated live rock. Made enough sense, but my clownfish is hovering around one spot, breathing fast, and not really swimming since I got him last night.

I'm thinking I should do a water change. I use pre-made saltwater that I buy in 5 gallon bags.

How do I go about this? My salinity reads at .023. Would changing out 5 gallons of water for 5 gallons of salt cause a drastic fluctuation? I'm also using a hydrometer, I know they can be inaccurate, but it's all I could afford.

Any help is greatly appreciated.
 

ange062

New member
Fast breathing is a sign of stress related to ammonia or nitrite levels. I'd recommend getting a test kit or having your LFS test your water to see where you are. Well cured LR can make your cycle much shorter, but a week is a bit quick to be adding a clown IMO especially if you haven't been measuring your parms.

I'd definitely recommend frequent water changes for the sake of the clown (every other day at least until your parms are in check). As far as your salinity, check both your tank and the new water, as long as they are close you should be fine. For example, I was trying to bring up the salinity during my WC yesterday, and used water mixed to 1.030 with my tank at 1.023. I did a ~4gal change and it only brought the tank to 1.024.

And, just for the record, hydrometers really arent bad as long as you wash them out with fresh water after each use and make sure there are no bubbles on the gauge.
 

ultimatedc

New member
Well tomorrow I'll buy 5 more gallons of salt water and add in, I don't know, a gallon every other day? What do I do if the salinity in the tank doesn't match the bagged salt water?

I'm not keeping coral and I do not have an RO/DI, nor will my parents let me have one as it wastes water blah blah and our water bill gets high anyway. My lights aren't too powerful either, would it be alright to use dechlorinated tapwater, especially for a tank this small?
 

ange062

New member
Well tomorrow I'll buy 5 more gallons of salt water and add in, I don't know, a gallon every other day? What do I do if the salinity in the tank doesn't match the bagged salt water?

I'm not keeping coral and I do not have an RO/DI, nor will my parents let me have one as it wastes water blah blah and our water bill gets high anyway. My lights aren't too powerful either, would it be alright to use dechlorinated tapwater, especially for a tank this small?

Check your levels is first priority to see where your cycle is. The more the merrier on water changes if your levels are out of whack, you haven't said what size tank you have but I'd recommend 20% daily honestly. Definitely don't use tap water, too many contaminants are possible (hard metals, chlorine, phosphates, etc). RO/DI doesn't waste water, it saves you from having to pay for good water at your LFS.

It's all up to the keeper in the end, you may have jumped the gun on livestock, now if you want to keep it alive you have to keep diligence on your WC until it settles. Clowns and damsels are pretty hardy, so you should be OK if you put in the work.

Salinity difference between tank and new water is probably not going to be a big issue, just make sure you maintain 1.020-1.026 in the main tank and you should be good.
 

GF3

In Memoriam
Do you have a friend with a stable system that your clown can crash at for a few weeks? Doesnt even have to be the display, if they have a fuge the clown can chill in there until you know your tank is ready, then bring the little guy home. No reason to risk its life because you were in a rush. Now you know better, time to act on it.
 

DreTheReefer

New member
That kills me to hear I used to work at a strictly salt water LFS and that is what he used to tell people . They used to buy whole tanks equipment fish and coral the sqme day. I would try to stop them but he hated it when I did,hence him firing me. Use distilled water from the grocery store if you can. I hope your animals survive. Just remember this hobby involves a lot of research. Do twice the amount you would rotfl for a.school paper and then tread lightly.
As for gte Ro/di unit tell your parents they can use it to get pure drinking water and save plastic if the use bottled water it would save a lot of$
 
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