View Full Version : New to hobby from San antonio

Thu, 10th Sep 2009, 06:12 PM
Hey I just wanted to introduce myself. I am very wet behind the ears when it comes to this hobby. I just purchased my self a 20T and have about 10pounds of live rock in there. I have had my tank going for about 3 weeks now. I have 4 damsels in there with 2 snails and about 5 crabs. I have a red starfish in there also with a whole in the center all the way through probaly going to die but still kicking for 1 weeks. I am trying to get my natrates/nitrites down they are through the roof. I believe I just need to wait for my tank to fully cycle. All my other levels are good. Ammonia is a little high. I probally need to get a protien skimmer. Anyone recommend a cheap one that would be good for a 20T.

It looks like this site has alot of info

Thu, 10th Sep 2009, 06:19 PM
welcome to maast :) (where are my manners? thanks for the reminder giau)

ammonia should be 0 before you add anything. if it isnt, i will be surprised if the snails and crabs live, and maybe even the damsels. really, you shouldnt add any livestock until nitrite is zero also. nitrates arent as toxic as the other two, but if they are high, it can/will cause problems also. sorry to sound so negative, but you may want to find new homes or temporary homes for your livestock until your ammonia and nitrite are both zero.

Thu, 10th Sep 2009, 06:33 PM
WELCOME TO MAAST....What kind of filtration , lighting, sump or no sump? can you tell us more about your equipment, and do you plan to add any corals later on? ..

Thu, 10th Sep 2009, 06:37 PM
The snails and crabs have been in over a week and are doing fine. My ammonia was just borderline high. I have had one ****sel in there for 3 weeks probally and my tank cycled for about 2. Im just going to ride it out and see what happens. I am not going to buy anything else but more live rock and stuff and equipment. I want my levels perfect before I put anything else of value in there. I took my water in to have it tested right at my peek and they said it was high. I then took it in a week later and they said it was good enough to put a couple of damsels and snails. Now I took my water in after the fish and snails and crabs have been in there and my nitrates/nitrites through the roof.

Thu, 10th Sep 2009, 06:38 PM
I have coralife t5 14w I believe. The only filtration right now is the hangon the back bio wheel. Yes I know I need more. I have 10gallon tank sitting that I thank I am going to make into a sump.Yes I plan to add corals

Thu, 10th Sep 2009, 06:50 PM
1st welcome to Maast, great site with knowledgable people.

For a protein skimmer on my 20g I have a CPR Bakpak and it works great. As the others have stated you should really only put stuff in after the cycle is complete, especially the starfish as they can be sensitive to the high nitrate/ammonia. Starting off with a damsel is a good way to kick start the cycle but four before the cycle is complete, to me sounds a little much and too quickly as the beneficial bacteria has not build up enough to combat the waste produce from 4 fish. When I started my 20g I just loaded up the live rock (roughly 30lbs) and dropped in some food with no fish, let my tank cycle then slowly added some live stock and after a year I am at 4 fish, bunch of inverts and coral. With the amount of live rock and sand that I had, I did not add a skimmer until roughly month 4 and was able to keep everything in check. For your setup since you have placed so much live stock so quickly I would think adding a skimmer, sump and maybe some more live rock would help greatly. Otherwise I would remove some of the damsels b/c of the bioload and lack of the completed cycle. Also to help out with the waste make sure you don't overfeed. Good luck and let us know how it goes.

Thu, 10th Sep 2009, 06:57 PM
Welcome to MAAST! As mentioned above it would be best to find a new or temporary home for most of your livestock. The best way to go at this hobby and be succesful is slow and easy. Adding too much at first is just going to cost you money.

Good luck! Keep reading. There is a ton of useful info here and a lot of people that are willing to help at the drop of a dime.

Thu, 10th Sep 2009, 06:59 PM
Ok thank you for informative post. My next purchase is a protein skimmer and more live rock. How many pounds of live rock should have in a 20. I am getting some great purple algea on my rock. I believe that I have been overfeeding a little bit but they just look so hungry haha. I thank I am going to do a 25% water change and get a protein skimmer and live rock.

Thu, 10th Sep 2009, 09:53 PM
Feed every two days. CPR Bak Paks can be modded with a maxijet. If you google bakpak mods, you'll find it. Add another 10# of rock and you're good. How deep is your sandbed? Also, I think that overfeeding is feeding more than they can eat at one time. As long as they are eating it, you are better off. Damsels are hardy and will probably last although it's frowned upon to put any animal dependent on us for their survival through undue stress. :) Have fun, read up, and try not to kill anything! :)

Oh yeah, Welcome to MAAST.

And lastly, Do NOT feed the bears.

Thu, 10th Sep 2009, 10:00 PM
I feed once in the morning and once at night. They are eating every bit I throw in there. My sandbed is probaly an inch all around. I'm just going to give it a week and test again

Thu, 10th Sep 2009, 10:57 PM
Cool. An inch is perfect. Just feed very sparingly, it probably won't really matter at this point, but it's good practice. Your objective is to keep stuff from decaying in your tank, and not adding phosphates. You should be seeing brown algae growth on the sand in your tank soon if you have not yet.

Fri, 11th Sep 2009, 07:24 AM
I have no algea yet I have been waiting and don't know why it hasn't started growing yet

Mr Cob
Fri, 11th Sep 2009, 11:28 AM
Welcome to MAAST Shu! Let's see some pics.

Fri, 11th Sep 2009, 11:41 AM
I have no algea yet I have been waiting and don't know why it hasn't started growing yet

It's because your tanks not really mature enough yet for it to take a visible foothold. Its there, and you will start to see it, it's an indicator that your tank is maturing. Later on as your tank is older, it then becomes an indicator of improper balance. But for the first few months, you will get it no matter what you do.

And welcome to MAAST and the hobby!!

Wed, 16th Sep 2009, 01:15 PM
As promised here is video of my setup. How do you insert the video into the post can't figure it out


Wed, 16th Sep 2009, 01:51 PM
here is a link to instructions on embedded youtube videos


Wed, 16th Sep 2009, 02:08 PM
Thanks for the instructions I tried to search but did not find anything.

Wed, 16th Sep 2009, 02:10 PM
it's a sticky in the lounge.

Wed, 16th Sep 2009, 02:12 PM

Welcome to a wonderful new world! :) Glad you have joined us here on MAAST...

Wed, 16th Sep 2009, 04:56 PM
Where you planning on getting your live rock from.

Wed, 16th Sep 2009, 05:10 PM
I have all the live rock I need in that tank right now. I believe i got it over at echert can remember the store. If you bought over 25 pounds he gave it to you at 2.50 a pound. I couldn't pass that up. So I have like 28to30 pounds in there right now.

Wed, 7th Oct 2009, 03:54 PM
so is the two part no good now, even if I order a batch from 2partsolutions today? im very new and unfamiliar when it comes to dosing two part, and was just doing some more reading on it before i ordered. it all sounded so cheap and great. any available alternatives that would be as cheap?