First time with saltwater, tell me what I'm doing right/wrong.


Status
Not open for further replies.

Dreshanda

Valued Member
Messages
58
Reaction score
8
Points
53
Location
Minnesnowta
Experience
More than 10 years
Good morning/evening, folks!

I live in military dorms on base, and after a long and informative discussion with the sergeants, I have learned that I can only have a 20 gallon tank MAX in my room. I really wanted to try out saltwater, though, so that's what I've started.

So far, I have sand and live rock in there, I'm waiting for the water to cycle first before adding any more living things.

However...I am town between two different fish that I would absolutely LOVE to have in this tank. The flame angelfish, and the yellowtail damselfish. I intend to keep a neon goby in there as well, but which of the other two fish would I be able to get away with, plus would be easy to care for? I've done loads of research on both fish, with mixed signals on their behavior. I will ask my lfs for their advice as well once the tank is fully cycled, but I always keep any second opinions in mind.

Remember...twenty gallons, and i'm not turning it into a full reef structure. Just FOWLR. I don't think I could keep both the angel or the damsel in there (but I would love to!), I just want to know what you folks would recommend for a beginner to saltwater. I like to consider myself a veteran when it comes to freshwater, though, so I understand the nitrogen cycle and how to set up a more natural habitat. My only problem is I don't understand the fish too well, and I don't have too much experience with more aggressive fish, such as the saltwater types.

Hope I don't sound like too much of a noob, but I thank you all in advance for any advice you have for me!
 

shusband

Well Known Member
Messages
704
Reaction score
4
Points
53
Location
Gainesville, FL
Experience
5 to 10 years
I've heard the flame angel are often poor stock, and can be difficult. Also they should really be in a larger tank. No experience with either.
 

Dreshanda

Valued Member
Messages
58
Reaction score
8
Points
53
Location
Minnesnowta
Experience
More than 10 years
Damsels can be rather territorial, and may bully some tank mates. But are much easier to care for. And forgiving in water parameters.
That's the thing, I keew hearing mixed signals about both a flame angel and a yellowtail damsel. Some websites and forums say that a single flame angel will do fine in 20 gallons, others say that it will bully the gobies to death and chew at my live rock.

Same thing with damselfish. One site will say they are aggressive towards their own species, another site will say they need to be kept in groups of three or more and that many will coexist just fine in a 20 gallon tank. Then, we got another site that says they prefer to stay single (unless they are in a mated pair, of course).

It's all so confusing, but since I am dead set on at least one of these fish, I woukd definitely like to hear more experience stories from people, or just have a couple more reputable references to learn from.

I figure that doing more in depth fish research is perfect while waiting for a tank to cycle, haha.
 

Dreshanda

Valued Member
Messages
58
Reaction score
8
Points
53
Location
Minnesnowta
Experience
More than 10 years
Oh yeah, I also hear that the flame angel can be rather hardy. Definitely read more about Damsels being more forgiving of water parameters, though.

So, we got one more point for the damselfish, lol.
 

shusband

Well Known Member
Messages
704
Reaction score
4
Points
53
Location
Gainesville, FL
Experience
5 to 10 years
Oh yeah, I also hear that the flame angel can be rather hardy. Definitely read more about Damsels being more forgiving of water parameters, though.

So, we got one more point for the damselfish, lol.
I considered the flame angel for my 29, but decided I want more peaceful fish, that are also hardier for my first saltwater tank. So far I have 3 yellow clown gobies and a hawkfish, not sure what else I'm going to do. Good luck with whatever you do decide and let us know how it goes. I personally am interested to see what you decide.
 

Dreshanda

Valued Member
Messages
58
Reaction score
8
Points
53
Location
Minnesnowta
Experience
More than 10 years
I considered the flame angel for my 29, but decided I want more peaceful fish, that are also hardier for my first saltwater tank. So far I have 3 yellow clown gobies and a hawkfish, not sure what else I'm going to do. Good luck with whatever you do decide and let us know how it goes. I personally am interested to see what you decide.
Well thank you for your advice, shusband! I will definitely have a few little neon gobies in there, as I absolutely love how they look. I think I will definitely start with the damselfish at this point, though. Maybe start with three juveniles and pick out the most aggressive onessicary as they grow up. My lfs is more than willing to take back a couple of their own fish if it's nessicary for the aquarium.

Once everything is settled in the tank and all my parameters are consistent, I'll start uploading pics of my set up and my new additions as they come!
 
Status
Not open for further replies.




Top Bottom