Help Adding Live Rock From Craigslist To My Established Tank

Pete Des

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Met this guy on craigslist. He's moving, had a nano reef tank that looked beautiful. I bought a super awesome trigger (yes, he's reef safe). Anyways, he breaking it down and offered to give me fijI live rock for free. I know there are complications when you add live rock to established tanks. I trust him, and his tank looked clean.

How should I add it to my tank? If you say "dip" can you please explain what a dip is like I'm 5 years old lol thanks.
 

Fisker

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How is he keeping the rock? Is it still in the tank with the pumps running? In a bucket with pumps? If it's in still water or the air for any length of time, it's basically going to be an ammonia bomb due to all the die-off. Here's what I'd do:

1) Go get the rock, be thankful because he sounds like an awesome dude, etc.
2) Bring it home IN BUCKETS OF SALTWATER. Doesn't have to be his water - you can mix it at home and take them with you. Keeping them completely submerged will prevent the most die-off from happening, and will limit any mini-cycle you might have from adding this stuff to a tank. If it's a long drive, consider buying a battery-driven air pump to keep things circulating.
3) Once home, put it into a QT tank or maybe just a couple of buckets with pumps and heat. Leave it there for a few days, and test the water for ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, and phosphate. If any of those are elevated, there was probably some sort of dead organic material on the rocks that would have caused a mini-cycle in your tank. I'd just let the rock cycle in the buckets for a few weeks. If it turns out that the rock stops leeching ammonia after a week, cool, go ahead and add it into your tank, assuming it's not leeching a ton of Phosphate. You just don't want to accidentally nuke your tank.
 
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Pete Des

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Thanks for the help. As beginner of this hobby (1.5 years), I actually understood directions. One question, the drive is about 45 minutes, would I need a battery driven air pump for that time?
 

MomeWrath

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Pete Des said:
Thanks for the help. As beginner of this hobby (1.5 years), I actually understood directions. One question, the drive is about 45 minutes, would I need a battery driven air pump for that time?
I would advise it. Water movement is key to preventing die-off. If you're adding a little bit of rock to a well established tank, I wouldn't stress tooooo much about it. If you are adding a lot of rock to a little tank, then absolutely make sure you cure it to prevent issues. It can't hurt.
 

Fisker

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I'd probably get an air pump for that. If you can't find a battery-driven one, Walmart sells cigarette lighter to household socket power converters so that you could run a regular air pump in the car. They're kinda expensive ($20-$30), but they last forever and can be used for a ton of different things.
 

Thedudeiam94

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You’re 5 years old and into saltwater aquariums? I’m impressed! Are you in high school also? Lol that was a joke! Congrats on the awesome deal! Hope all goes well!
 

Jesterrace

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Definitely keep the rockwork wet as much as possible (definitely submerged in saltwater for the time it isn't actively being transferred from tank to bucket or vice versa). Not sure on the flow. It definitely wouldn't hurt to keep the flow going to keep the bacteria alive.
 

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