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Old 01/10/2020, 01:14 PM   #1
OnlyTheBest
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Join Date: Jan 2020
Posts: 19
The Perfect New Tank Cycle

I am trying to plan every detail of my tank build. This is my last tank. I am trying to incorporate everything I have learned from experience and research. I think I have finally developed a way to cycle my tank to ensure coral success and low nutrient levels. I want to know everyone’s opinions on my thoughts as well as any changes or how you have differed or found success.

STEP 1
Get the tank, stand, and sump ordered delivered and set up.

STEP 2 (3 months)
Start rocks cycling.

I am going to use reef saver rock in the tank and blocks of marine pure in the sump

Use this time to plumb the tank, let it dry, set up my APEX system and water test the tank and plumbing

STEP 3
Aquascape
Add water
Set up refugium
Seed pods
Sand

STEP 4 (6 months)
Allow time for pods to germinate
Ghost feed
Begin skimmer
Start GFO / Carbon

STEP 5
Introduce first fish
Introduce all fish slowly while monitoring nutrient levels

STEP 6
After all levels stabilize and I am happy with fitration
Add corals slowly and begin dosing Calcium, Magnessium, Alkalinity, and Amino Acids

Any input would be much appreciated. Thank you to everyone who is helping on this journey


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Old 01/14/2020, 08:57 AM   #2
Michael Hoaster
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Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Boulder, CO
Posts: 4,447
This all looks good to me. Two things I don't see mentioned are quarantine tank setup, and clean up crew introduction. These could actually be combined. You could get the QT up and running and then start building up your CUC in it. Or, if you are QTing fish, a small holding tank. That way, you have your crew ready to go into the display as needed, so there's no lag time between algae phase starting and getting your crew in place. I did this and it definitely shortened my algae phase.

Pods are actually excellent crew members. I'd suggest adding them to the display as well, to help out with algae and detritus. They were actually very helpful in my winning battle with dinoflagellates. For other CUC members, I recommend 2-3 different reproducing snails, whose populations will match their food source. My favorite is the Strombus Grazer from Indo-Pacific Sea Farms (ipsf.com). 1-3 Nassarius snails for leftover food clean up, 1 Fighting conch for sand bed algae, 1 Sea cucumber for detritus. Also micro serpent stars and spaghetti worms will reproduce and keep detritus levels down.

A lot of people underestimate what a really good clean up crew can do, and add a random selection that doesn't do much good. Getting it right will make your job so much easier.

Good luck with your build!


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As many naturalists and environmentalists have suggested, we should set aside our arrogance,
our desire to conquer and control everything, and walk hand in hand with Mother Nature. -Walter Adey

Current Tank Info: 180g Seagrass Sandbar Lagoon, START DATE November 28, 2018
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