I have some questions about FOWLR tanks.

betta fan 99

I'm setting up my very first marine aquarium after my birthday and have some questions on it. First of all, I'm setting up a FOWLR system in a 55 gallon with this stock...

1 occelaris clownfish
2 fire fish gobies or purple fire fish gobies (have not decided which one)
1yellowhead jawfish
1 coral beauty or flame angel or foxface (I haven't decided)
1 royal gramma

Now some questions that I have are...

How do you cure live rock?
Do you need to and how do you rinse live sand?

Well, that's all I can think of for now, but I definitely have more questions later.
 

1971roadrunner

Hi, there are many ways to go about this and I strongly suggest you research this much farther but I'll share with you exactly what I have done and often recommend to others. IME starting with a 50/50 mix of live sand/non-live sand and live rock/base rock then just be patient and let the tank run/cycle and cure/settle with regular testing with your own test kit for ohhhh....two weeks or less. You would then add an inexpensive cycle fish (I use a blue damsel). Try Aragonite by Carib Sea sand, others may be heavy on silicates which can cause algae problems (diatoms) etc...There are many opinions on how to do this which may be more or less $ etc...but this seems to always go well. good luck.

*oh, no you don't rinse live sand and try to get some sand from an established tank to introduce some bio-diversity to the micro-organisms in there but not absolutely necessary just helpful.
 

Claire Bear

Hi, +1 on roadrunner!
I used live rock but when it arrives, most everything is dead, imo. So, I cycled the rock in saltwater in my 30 gallon trash can for two weeks-rinsed a few times and kept a powerhead in the tank to aid in circulation. After that, I rinsed again and then put in my tank. I put my rock on bottom and then poured the "live sand" around the rock base but not under the rock. Filled with water and kept checking perimeters-nitrates, nitrites amomonia, and finally got 0 0 10. I added three fish btw to a 90 gallon tank-damsels.
Cycled!
Good luck and read everything!
https://www.fishlore.com/saltwater-aquarium-reef-tank-book.htm
 

Machine11

Not to hijack this thread, but for my own knowledge and hopefully that of the op's as well.
With Live rock,
1) do you add an ammonia source to cycle or will the live rock do this on its own?
2) It's my understanding that a protein skimmer is a must have for any sw tank, do you need a filter as well if using live rock? If so is a cannister or sump preferred


 

1971roadrunner

Live rock or sand that is not purchased from a reliable source can be dead which of course would cause a major problem. I've always bought both from any number of LFS's here in my town that I trust and can inspect. If I didn't have this luxury I would do exactly as Claire does.

*BTW, I still (mostly ) QT live rock to inspect for pests I don't want in my DT. This was due to a mantis shrimp horror story I had yrs. ago and just a smart thing to do if possible.
 

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