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Phlox
05/23/2015, 09:29 AM
Where to begin...I like posting here for input so here it goes again. I am not new to the hobby but have recently set up a new 55gal tank. It's been running for about a month. My main question is since water parameters have seemed to level out I am about ready to start adding things to the tank. I only plan on having softies like mushrooms and zoas. Maybe down the line a frogspawn and leather coral. I've kept these before in the past but I added corals after I had all my fish since it was a FOWLR system. Is it better to add mushrooms now and possibly one small fish (royal gramma)? I would like to slowly do both but wasn't sure if I could add mushrooms first before the fish as I only want to have 3 fish total.

uncleL
05/23/2015, 09:41 AM
I would get 2 clowns "Nemo" and a Lawnmower Blenny. I would get some DR Tim's Bacteria!!! Good stuff! Check it out on youtube!

Phlox
05/23/2015, 10:01 AM
So just a few fish first then? How long should I wait to add mushies? Once my tank stabilizes again from buying the clown? The type of clown I'm getting when I do will be a Picasso Clown I like those better than the saddle back.

Sk8r
05/23/2015, 10:20 AM
I would start with the mushrooms and cleanup crew, and put your new fish in quarantine observation for 4 weeks while you work on the DT. Adding corals does not increase the bioload: ideally, it helps it. You will need to feed the tank (flake fishfood will do) while the cleanup crew works, however, if you have mushrooms: they do need food from the water, and will get it in both particulate and chemical form. By the time the first fish is going in, he will go into water that smells like a reef. Continually test alkalinity in your cycled tank, and forever after; keep it at 8.3.

Incidentally, the frogspawn is a stony coral which requires calcium supplementation, and which does not play well with softies. You can do it, but it requires putting the frog close to where the water comes in, and also running carbon if the softies pitch one of their fits, (carbon removes the coral spit that softies give off when mad) and putting something like kalk powder in your topoff.

Autotopoff definitely recommended from the time you're cycling. Likewise a refractometer. And a qt tank with bare bottom, no rock or sand, simple floss filter changed daily.

Phlox
05/23/2015, 11:52 AM
So I think then I'm going to start with just corals since it would be good not to have a bioload from fish. I'm thinking maybe get three different types (colors) of mushrooms and maybe two different zoas. After seeing how that goes for a few weeks I will then either add in a royal gramma of Picasso clown. I get all my corals from Mr. Coral of Fredrick Maryland his stuff is amazing and the shop is so cool because no one goes there since it's mostly an online place. He sells mushrooms unattached to rock in all colors. Do mushrooms attach themselves fairly quickly to live rock? I'm going to place them in low flow areas so they won't blow off but I don't know how long it normally takes them to secure themselves.

Sk8r
05/23/2015, 02:54 PM
Set each mushroom or group of shrooms and a rock in a glass bowl in the tank and wait 24 hours. It will probably attach---granted the water is 8.3 alkalinity, 1.024 salinity, etc. Once they're attached, you can move their little rock where you want it. They will more likely stay put in areas of good light and a flow that will tend to carry food to them. They do crawl---just very, very slowly. They don't adhere to glass. This is why, in the glass bowl, they will tend to take hold of the rock. Should be a clear bowl, so light all around them.

Phlox
05/23/2015, 06:05 PM
Thanks for the tip! :D I'm so excited to go to the coral store now! Now to refrain from buying to much lol

Sk8r
05/23/2015, 06:13 PM
Start slow! And get tests and supplement for alkalinity. Salifert test is good. Kent dkh Buffer is good.