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Old 08/05/2008, 11:51 AM   #1
Sk8r
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PLEASE check out your intended fish purchases here first!

Give us your size of tank, and type of water treatment (filter/live rock, sump y/n?) and tell us what you propose to buy---and please, old hand reefers, give us some help on this! But I have just read two really sad posts from people whose lfs sold them impossible-to-keep-alive creatures that are sadly dead or dying right this moment.
We can't answer without info, so describe your system (best yet, fill in those questions in My Profile under My RC, and give detail the way us old hands do)---and we'll be ever so glad to tell you whether your fish will have a good life in your tank.

Help me out, others who know! This is bailing the Titanic with a teacup to take on alone.


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Salinity 1.024-6; alkalinity 8.3-9.3 on KH scale; calcium 420; magnesium 1300, temp 78-80, nitrate .2. Ammonia 0. No filters: lps tank. Alk and cal won't rise if mg is low.

Current Tank Info: 105g AquaVim wedge, 2 firefish, 2 chromis, royal gramma basslet, starry blenny, chestnut turbo snails, bristleworms, couple of hermits.
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Old 08/05/2008, 11:57 AM   #2
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10 gl w/ 5gl sump lr w/ ls. I am thinking about getting a clown tang.


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What you talkin about Mrs Lime.

Current Tank Info: 120 gl oceanic tech, 30 gallon fuge, 40 gallon sump, Itech 200 skimmer, LED Lighting . Mixed reef.
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Old 08/05/2008, 11:59 AM   #3
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Suuurrre you are. The fish is longer than that aquarium.


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Salinity 1.024-6; alkalinity 8.3-9.3 on KH scale; calcium 420; magnesium 1300, temp 78-80, nitrate .2. Ammonia 0. No filters: lps tank. Alk and cal won't rise if mg is low.

Current Tank Info: 105g AquaVim wedge, 2 firefish, 2 chromis, royal gramma basslet, starry blenny, chestnut turbo snails, bristleworms, couple of hermits.
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Old 08/05/2008, 12:01 PM   #4
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JK. wanted to see if [you] were watching.


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What you talkin about Mrs Lime.

Current Tank Info: 120 gl oceanic tech, 30 gallon fuge, 40 gallon sump, Itech 200 skimmer, LED Lighting . Mixed reef.

Last edited by Sk8r; 12/17/2010 at 11:31 AM.
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Old 08/05/2008, 12:21 PM   #5
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90 gallon surfline. aqua c remora skimmer, cbr hang on back fuge, nova extreme t5 lighting, 2 powerheads, 1 inch sb, 85lbs of LR, heaters, fans....

stocking inverts today finished cycling lastweek,

-5 astrio snails
-5 turbo snails
-5 red hermits
-red starfish
-cleaner shrimp (1)


then later adding softies...

zoas, anenome, green polyp stars, red and green mushroom, etc.

for fish...

-2 clowns
-dwarf lionfish
-blue hippo tang (when itgets over 8 inches if it does ill move it to a 200 gal.)
-mandarin goby (yes in 6 months...)
-either tiny niger trigger (will also add to 200gal when exceeds 8 inches) or a yellow eyed tang, or yellow tang, or some kind of a tang lol


and that is it...


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Old 08/05/2008, 12:37 PM   #6
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I'd trade back the red starfish> i'm suspecting it's a linkia, a film eater for big mature tanks. There's really no regular star that doesn't take out your sand bed or b) die of starvation.
zoas, gsp, shrooms (discosomas and actinodiscus) ok now.

I'd get some cerith snails, about 5 big nassarius, add a couple of fighting conchs (small)---if you go through the algae bloom stage or your start seeing dirt in your sandbed. Cultivate bristleworms, etc. I like to have about 1 cleaner to the gallon, counting the fighting conch as about 10, and the nassarius as 2 each.

I"ve never had a lionfish, but it's my impression if their mouth can stretch to fit, those clowns will be gone, and the mandy, too.
If the fuge starts producing, the mandy should be ok in, indeed a few months. Maybe by September late. I'd recommend the tomini, the yellow or the purple, or the kole tang for that size tank, easy fit. But if you have 2 tangs in the tank, be careful about disposition. The purple, for instance, I do know, is a perfect gentleman with cigar-shaped fish, but can be a Pita with pancake-shaped ones. Triggers can take after softie coral, so I've heard, but not experienced: never owned a trigger---but they can be nippy and may cause wounds that become problems. I'd say wait on your trigger and lion until you get the 200g.

Anybody with experience of these particular fish want to chime in here?


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Salinity 1.024-6; alkalinity 8.3-9.3 on KH scale; calcium 420; magnesium 1300, temp 78-80, nitrate .2. Ammonia 0. No filters: lps tank. Alk and cal won't rise if mg is low.

Current Tank Info: 105g AquaVim wedge, 2 firefish, 2 chromis, royal gramma basslet, starry blenny, chestnut turbo snails, bristleworms, couple of hermits.
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Old 08/05/2008, 12:44 PM   #7
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well the big lionfish get HUGE... sothats why i wantrthe dwarf since his maximum size is 6"s and 4-5 in captivity....

i wont get a starfish for now, for sure snails and im guessing those fighting things. what about the cleanerfish? i might get a niger or a blue jaw trigger either way they will have to be small....as well as the hippo

my LR is getting ALOT of green grass loooking algea, sponges, stumps etc, turning red, and theres alot of algea now so i need inverts!


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Current Tank Info: 90 gal surfline, remora skimmer 120gal, 2 powerheads, 4 cooling fans, cbr HOB fuge, nova extreme 4x54t5, ac-300, 125lbs of live rock corals, etc!
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Old 08/05/2008, 12:50 PM   #8
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go inverts first. Cleaner fish really aren't needed for other fish: they'll be healthy so they won't need them: but DO quarantine. Tangs are way susceptible to ich, which is like fleas if it gets loose in your tank, only fatal.
I do think you need to ask about the triggers: they may eat their peaceful tankmates. Queen and titan triggers will chase down and attack scuba divers. I'm not sure the disposition of the little ones is better---just their ambitions are smaller.
And consult about appetites on the dwarf lion: that's still a very big mouth. I had an eel who seemed to have a small mouth---he himself was about the diameter of a fountain pen---who ate 300.00 worth of his tankmates inside two weeks, and required a debuild of my tank to catch him.


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Salinity 1.024-6; alkalinity 8.3-9.3 on KH scale; calcium 420; magnesium 1300, temp 78-80, nitrate .2. Ammonia 0. No filters: lps tank. Alk and cal won't rise if mg is low.

Current Tank Info: 105g AquaVim wedge, 2 firefish, 2 chromis, royal gramma basslet, starry blenny, chestnut turbo snails, bristleworms, couple of hermits.
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Old 08/05/2008, 12:55 PM   #9
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4 small Nassarius snails, 6 damsel and roughly 40 lbs of live rock and slowly adding more weekly. HOWEVER, I do happen to have a Biowheel filter going along with a SeaClone 150 skimmer which is temporary fix until I have more money going. I have standard lighting with a heater but I don't have a sump or fuge or anything else cool sounding, however I would much rather get those things set up before I were to have any other little critters in there.

With that in mind, is it better to buy the sump, fuge etc or try and rig up my own plumbing. I want whats best for my little fishes, they're even eating from my hand now!!! I didn't even know damsels did that, well domino, green do. My bluetails come out to beg for food but definately like their privacy. So tell me to buy or build?


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Old 08/05/2008, 12:58 PM   #10
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Dwarf lionfish will eat smaller fish as well. I would stay away from it. I had a smallred starfish in my last system it was a fromia Indica, it is hardy and small had it for over a year and a half before selling. If the red starfish is this kind they are not hard to keep like lincias


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What you talkin about Mrs Lime.

Current Tank Info: 120 gl oceanic tech, 30 gallon fuge, 40 gallon sump, Itech 200 skimmer, LED Lighting . Mixed reef.
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Old 08/05/2008, 01:10 PM   #11
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Great thread idea, it should be stickied (like almost every single one of your threads!)

I was actually thinking of getting a Niger trigger. But I think my tank is a bit on the small side. I just want an expert's opinion.

I have a 90 Gallon Tank, 65 Gallon sump/ DSB refugium, ASM G3 skimmer, ~180 lbs of fiji live rock, 3 inch sandbed.

My other inhabitants are:
2 False Clowns
1 Mandarin
1 Lawnmower Blenny
1 Regal Tang (in QT)
1 Coral Beauty
1 Bangaii Cardinal
1 Striped Bristletooth Tang (He's coming out this week)

And I have various SPS and LPS corals with a few 'shrooms.


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Old 08/05/2008, 01:27 PM   #12
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yeah thats why my plan is to get 2 medium clowns , then like 2 weeks later the small 2" hippo, then like 2 weeks after a yellow or yellow eyed tang, and then the small lionfish, and then the small trigger. then in months get the mandarin goby.

if anything the one i wont get if i feel its overstocked will be the yellow or yellow eyed tang. my fav fish for sure are the clowns, hippo, niger, mandarin, and lionfish..

the only question is when it will outgrow the tank, and if i should add the cleaner shrimp?


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Current Tank Info: 90 gal surfline, remora skimmer 120gal, 2 powerheads, 4 cooling fans, cbr HOB fuge, nova extreme 4x54t5, ac-300, 125lbs of live rock corals, etc!
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Old 08/05/2008, 01:43 PM   #13
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I have a 37 FOWLR with two perc clowns. Live sand bed. No sump or fuge - not enough room. I do run phosban. I have standard cleanup crew - just snails and hermit crabs.

I'm thinking about getting a yellow watchman goby, a cleaner shrimp, some mushrooms (green striped) and finally a flame angel. Any thoughts on that plan? I'm thinking that I should keep the fish to 4 - worried that more would be too much for my 37.


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Current Tank Info: Est. 4/11/04: 37 gallon FOWLR, 2 clown fish
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Old 08/05/2008, 01:56 PM   #14
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Might be pushing it with the Flame Angel. Not bio-load wise... just space wise.

Most people here say that 29+ Gallons is ok for a flame angel. A friend of mine had one in a 29 Gallon and it paced the glass all day. He upgrade to a 55 Gallon (4FT Tank), and that solved the pacing problem.

You could try it, but I would prefer a Cherub Angel or African Flameback. They are a gorgeous purple w/ yellow and are not aggressive at all.


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Old 08/05/2008, 02:05 PM   #15
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I'd like to get a yellowstipe clingfish for my 6 month old 120 reef.

inhabitants:
long spine urchin, snails, bicolor blenny, harptail, black lepard wrasse, serpant star

deep sandbed, 12 gal fuge/ 25 g sump, dual overflow 1-skimmer 1- fuge etc..

Thanks for the thread,


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Old 08/05/2008, 03:37 PM   #16
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I'm not seeing anything too alarming, except the lionfish in a community tank. Your clingfish should be great.

Re buy v/ build, I'd say build if you have the time...and you do, if you don't push the tank. You can buy a used tank if you know for a surety that copper was never used in it. (A test is to water it up with discarded saltwater and run a strip of polyfilter in a filter): if copper is loose in the tank, the polyfilter turns azure blue. Easy to install baffles (barriers) high and low to create your own sump.
A downflow box is harder to make: you have to cut your own plexi, and you need a model, but we have a forum (The DIY or Do It Yourself forum, ) which can save you a ton of money. Things easy to DIY? Kalk reservoirs and kalk reactors, sumps, in particular. Some have made wavemakers, antibubble devices, tanks, and, ---well, just take a tour. If you can handle a saw and glue two things together at a right angle, you may find kindred souls here.

Start your tank with plenty of inverts. Avoid coral banded shrimp and arrow crabs and anemones and, MOO (my opinion only) cucumbers, toxic little devils. DO NOT kill off your bristleworms. Just don't try to pet them.

Here's a tip: type the name of your fish in the panel above marked "Live Search" and you will likely find out how big it gets, what it eats, and where it's from.
DO NOT assume that a fish with an adult size of 18" will only grow to fit your tank: it will just die before it gets too much bigger, and that's just not right.
How fast do they grow/do you have to come up with a mega-tank? The bigger the fish, the faster/bigger the growth spurt, given decent conditions. You can have a fish that increases inches in a year.
And remember tangs and angels are oxygen hogs...Somebody comes online in tears and says their tang and angel are suddenly dead with no apparent cause, and the first thing I ask is: How's your oxygenation?---because the fact it was the tang and angel that checked out together usually means that's what's wrong. Water temp rises a critical bit, limiting ability of tank to supply oxygen, and they're gone.
That's one other reason we say: big tank for tangs and angels.


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Salinity 1.024-6; alkalinity 8.3-9.3 on KH scale; calcium 420; magnesium 1300, temp 78-80, nitrate .2. Ammonia 0. No filters: lps tank. Alk and cal won't rise if mg is low.

Current Tank Info: 105g AquaVim wedge, 2 firefish, 2 chromis, royal gramma basslet, starry blenny, chestnut turbo snails, bristleworms, couple of hermits.

Last edited by Sk8r; 08/05/2008 at 03:48 PM.
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Old 08/05/2008, 03:59 PM   #17
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just added my inverts. 5 astrios, 5 margarita, and 2 med. turbos....

and 8 red hermits. they got to work as soon as i added them


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Old 08/05/2008, 04:01 PM   #18
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Great thread.

A word of caution: don't put all of your trust in what the employees tell you at the LFS, or in the names they assign to critters.

While many people know that mandarins are hard to keep, they also know that blennies are much easier. Unfortunately, the fish commonly labeled as a "Scooter Blenny" at the LFS is actually a dragonette, a member of the same finicky group as the mandarins. I found this out after I got my new "blenny" home. Luckily, I was able to culture baby brine shrimp until my fuge matured enough to keep the dragonette fed. Unfortunately, many people never realize why their "blennies" starve to death.

Before you buy, even if you don't post in this thread, look up your prospective purchase by as many names as the LFS can tell you. Make sure the pictures match the critter.

Finally, if an old-timer in this thread tells you that your current tank won't sustain X, that doesn't mean you can never have X, and it doesn't mean the old-timers enjoy crushing your dreams. If you have your heart set on a mandarin, or a tang, or even an octopus, chances are someone here can tell you how to prepare a proper home for your heart's desire. It may not happen tomorrow, but when you're ready, your new pet will last much longer.


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Old 08/05/2008, 04:02 PM   #19
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Here's a ballpark:
pico tanks, around 5 g: stick to neon gobies, clown gobies, small shrooms, and maybe some sexy shrimp.

nanotank-10-20 g: 2 clowns and some mushrooms: the clowns will treat them like nems. Or any of the above. Plus highfin gobies, shrimp gobies (yellow watchman); dartfish (they jump)]older tank: some of the blennies that only get max 2-4 inches.

30-50 any of the above, and some of the larger blennies, plus corals of any sort (adequate light)...or specialty tanks, for hungry species: a lion, a trigger, etc. Multiple fairy wrasses are possible, but do not put with smaller fish. Also royal gramma, same caution.

50-60: on the cusp for the very smallest tangs, the tomini and another guy I can't remember. Any of the above, too. And a mandarin or scooter blenny if you have a fuge, preferably 20g fuge. Do not combine mandys with fairy wrasses or any other wrasse. Competitors.

75-100. A yellow tang, some of the smallest angels, pick one, don't overload. Plus any of the foregoing.

150-200. Anthias. Larger tangs. Larger angels. (these eat corals). Pretty much the range of commonly available fishes. If it's exotic, large, and you've never seen one before, do a lot of research.

THis doesn't purport to be a wholly accurate division and I'm sure I've left things out, esp. the specialities like sharks, octopi---consult in those forums; and there are some combos not to do: eels can be in a smaller tank, but will eat tankmates, etc. They're also escape artists.
I only hope to point up the sizes you should look at, and where you should settle your ambitions at various stages of budget and space. Remember this tank isn't the only one you'll ever have: leave some unrealized ambition for the future, or what have you to look forward to, eh? when you build the mega-tank...or install a wall 'o fish.


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Salinity 1.024-6; alkalinity 8.3-9.3 on KH scale; calcium 420; magnesium 1300, temp 78-80, nitrate .2. Ammonia 0. No filters: lps tank. Alk and cal won't rise if mg is low.

Current Tank Info: 105g AquaVim wedge, 2 firefish, 2 chromis, royal gramma basslet, starry blenny, chestnut turbo snails, bristleworms, couple of hermits.
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Old 08/05/2008, 04:06 PM   #20
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mindytoy, the actual name is "scarlet hermits." They're great. The margaritas are great on glass, particularly, but alas, don't live long at the 80 degree temps we keep our tanks. They're a cold water species...darn it.

Best species for tank: astraeas (pointy, fall over on sand, will die that way if not propped up near glass for escape---people often blame hermits for this demise) I use chopsticks. Another good species: ceriths, turbos. Nassarius: I like a couple in every tank above 10 g, but pick small ones if smaller tank.


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Salinity 1.024-6; alkalinity 8.3-9.3 on KH scale; calcium 420; magnesium 1300, temp 78-80, nitrate .2. Ammonia 0. No filters: lps tank. Alk and cal won't rise if mg is low.

Current Tank Info: 105g AquaVim wedge, 2 firefish, 2 chromis, royal gramma basslet, starry blenny, chestnut turbo snails, bristleworms, couple of hermits.
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Old 08/05/2008, 04:07 PM   #21
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Right on, KarlBob.


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Salinity 1.024-6; alkalinity 8.3-9.3 on KH scale; calcium 420; magnesium 1300, temp 78-80, nitrate .2. Ammonia 0. No filters: lps tank. Alk and cal won't rise if mg is low.

Current Tank Info: 105g AquaVim wedge, 2 firefish, 2 chromis, royal gramma basslet, starry blenny, chestnut turbo snails, bristleworms, couple of hermits.
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Old 08/05/2008, 07:11 PM   #22
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yeah i got some margaritas, turbos, and astrios...

those turbos get huge! the biggest ones were the turbos and there the size of maybe a quarter the other ones like nickles. the hermits got straight to work! finally something new to look at instead of algea and copods and feather dusters/ sponges lol


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Current Tank Info: 90 gal surfline, remora skimmer 120gal, 2 powerheads, 4 cooling fans, cbr HOB fuge, nova extreme 4x54t5, ac-300, 125lbs of live rock corals, etc!
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Old 08/05/2008, 07:49 PM   #23
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Has anyone mentioned how lionfish eat inverts? I had a P. Volitans for about a year; goodbye whatever part of the cleanup crew it could make into a fast gulp, including stomatella snails. An amazing, spirited fish to keep, though.


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Old 08/05/2008, 08:35 PM   #24
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Kfisk, if you could provide MindyToy some real specifics on the dwarf lion, it would be a real benefit.

When you get inverts you value and end up with something that eats them, the sump is a good place for your inverts.

(I love stomatellas.)


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Salinity 1.024-6; alkalinity 8.3-9.3 on KH scale; calcium 420; magnesium 1300, temp 78-80, nitrate .2. Ammonia 0. No filters: lps tank. Alk and cal won't rise if mg is low.

Current Tank Info: 105g AquaVim wedge, 2 firefish, 2 chromis, royal gramma basslet, starry blenny, chestnut turbo snails, bristleworms, couple of hermits.
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Old 08/05/2008, 08:41 PM   #25
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Well, I tried keeping a dwarf lion, but traded it within a couple of weeks because it wound up being a much too fussy eater; so my experience is quite limited there.


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