My 70 Gallon Tank.....

Discussion in 'Tank Talk' started by corw314, Apr 5, 2009.

  1. corw314

    corw314 Colossal Squid Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2002
    Messages:
    3,748
    Likes Received:
    55
    As most of you know, we moved to a condo about 2 weeks ago Friday. Today was tank moving day. First we moved the empty 70 Gallon that my sons had resealed and refitted molding on. Next I emptied 2 saltwater tanks, my 27 flat back hex and my 47 flat back. Decided not to bring the contents of the 27 as this was just a feeder tank of local crabs with no heater and I was afraid how that culture would adjust to the tropical tank. All contents of the 47 gallon including the Eheim and the serpent star who has resided with over 10 different octopuses is now settled in a 1/2 full 70 gallon! I'm so excited as all I need to do is add water, invest in another filter source as I do not think my Eheim is large enough so I'll just add a second larger one. Install the Protein Skimmer. And someone recommended sand from home depot for Kids sandboxes as the substrate??? Anyone ever use this? He's a freshwater hobbiest, very skilled and uses it in all his cichlid tanks. I actually lucked out as the he is my nephew and he has the nack for keeping pristine healthy tanks so between him, my son Kevin and I we got it all moved and running tonight! It won't be long before I get my next octopus in my new home!!!
     
  2. sedna

    sedna Larger Pacific Striped Octopus Supporter Registered

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2008
    Messages:
    1,076
    Likes Received:
    104
    Good to hear, hope your good luck continues. Enjoy your new digs!
     
  3. Nancy

    Nancy Titanites Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2002
    Messages:
    5,584
    Likes Received:
    71
    Location:
    Dallas Texas
    In the research we did while writing our ceph care book, Colin and I looked into sand and play sand quite deeply. We learned that play sand is quite controlled in the UK and does not contain contaminants, while there is no such control in the US.

    Some of the Marine Aquarium Societies may know of a quality sand that can be 100% depended upon for marine aquariums, but even there, you'd have to be extra sure for an octopus.

    I think there is great value in using aragonite sand, which helps control your pH. I noticed a real difference when I changed out my old marine sand for the aragonite kind.

    You'll appreciate having the larger tank!

    Nancy
     
  4. corw314

    corw314 Colossal Squid Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2002
    Messages:
    3,748
    Likes Received:
    55
    Tank progress....Well....around Jess's BD while you all were celebrating in Monteray Ca, I filled my tank back up. I did what I probably should not have but let the tank sit with about a foot of water in it for a few months. Filters were running but no aquatic life. I checked the salinity before I started and due to evaporation, it was off the scale. Once I completed adding not only premade saltwater plus fresh as the salinty was so high, I took a sample to my LFs. Nitrates were off the chart. They recommended I add a smaller eheim filled with carbon, which I had the smaller Eheim so no big deal. I've let that run for almost 2 weeks. Took another sample yesterday and nitrates are still off the charts. So after buying about $100 of new fijlter material, as my filter has had crushed coral in it for years, they suggested I totally remove all water, redo the filter and start over. Question is does the nitrates settle in the substrate and pieces of coral? Do I need to change these out as well or just the massive water change and filter redo? I feel like a newby here as I have had my filter running for probably 15 years with the crushed coral! I am going back to review Nancy's book :smile:and the advice on setting up a new tank!!! Time for some relearning!!! Wish me luck!!!!
     
  5. Jean

    Jean Colossal Squid Supporter

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2002
    Messages:
    4,218
    Likes Received:
    138
    Location:
    Dunedin, New Zealand
    good luck! :rainbow:
     
  6. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2006
    Messages:
    19,079
    Likes Received:
    1,126
    Location:
    Gainesville, GA USA
    I remember Sedna having the same problem with her 10 yr+ tank (can't find the thread).

    Unfortunately, filtering does not effect lowering nitrates much if at all (but your canister CAN definitely ADD nitrates) and canister media and bottom substrate are likely your biggest culprates (and are the reason I prefer with a sump filter arrangement and as thin an argonite bottom substrate as I can justify). If you can madly stir up your current bottom substrate (and push current around anything else in the tank) and do large (5+ gallons) water changes weekly (or bi-weekly) with your new canister media in place and you should start seeing significant a drop in a month but the process is very slow. Using a siphon and keeping it near where you stir (I like using a bamboo skewer as a stir stick) seems to help get the yuck out more quickly but I am not sure it really helps speeding up the process. My choice has been to remove the crushed shells in all but one tank and replace it with an inch of new (not live) argonite sand. You may get a small cycle if you go this route but I have not lost any critters as I have changed over to the thin sand bottom.

    If you have an undergravel filter and can remove it, you might think about pulling it out as well. Unfortunately, there are likely toxin build ups under it and disturbing them could add more problems than solutions. Our 140 has a non-functioning UG and a PITA DSB in the small sump. I would dearly like to remove both and replace the shell substrate with sand but I am afraid of disrupting too much to try it. Fortunately, the nitrates are low (after several years the small DSB finally seems to be beneficial rather than adding to the problem).
     
  7. corw314

    corw314 Colossal Squid Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2002
    Messages:
    3,748
    Likes Received:
    55
    Sooooooo.....Tonight....drained tank....filled with 5 gal buckets to and from bathroom tub......Ready to redo Eiheim and realized my hosing is old...really old...mad dash to Tropaquarium and after dropping a quick $100, came home with new tubing, new shutoff valves, new suction cups and this tiny little bottle of bacteria instead of clam that they swear is all I need. Interesting......so I'm guessing since this tiny little bottle says add fish immediately, I should hit a bait store for killies tomorrow before I add it? Anyone ever used this tiny little bottle of bacteria before?
     
  8. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2006
    Messages:
    19,079
    Likes Received:
    1,126
    Location:
    Gainesville, GA USA
    IMO (yes, I tried it ONCE and paid a high price to get it here "alive") it is a good way to experience New Tank Syndrome. Even if it does add bacteria, a new tank can't sustain it.
     
  9. CaptFish

    CaptFish Colossal Squid Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2009
    Messages:
    2,832
    Likes Received:
    96
    Location:
    South Florida
    I think what i used was the same thing I used a "kick starter" and added cheap fish right away. but I have no idea what was in the bottle I used. I have had no fish deaths in that tank. Now that tank houses various fish but the main attractions are a Lionfish and a Nassau Grouper.
     
  10. corw314

    corw314 Colossal Squid Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2002
    Messages:
    3,748
    Likes Received:
    55
    Well....we got the Eheim up and running but I can't open the huge container of salt till son comes home....
     
  11. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2006
    Messages:
    19,079
    Likes Received:
    1,126
    Location:
    Gainesville, GA USA
    Looking good!
     
  12. corw314

    corw314 Colossal Squid Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2002
    Messages:
    3,748
    Likes Received:
    55
    Son opened bucket of salt. It had 3 bags in it, 50 gals a piece. Tank took one bag and now salinity at 1.024. Interesting as I did not realize the rock and coral displaced 20 gals. Tomorrow night I will run and get cheap fish and try the tiny little bottle of bacteria. Question....it's been in the fridge. I'm thinking it should be brought up to at least room temp before I put it in the warm tank?? Not sure I would recommend this but being I'm willing to wait and take it slow should be interesting to see how it goes. I also need a refresher so I'm pulling out Nancy and Colins book to review.
     
  13. Nancy

    Nancy Titanites Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2002
    Messages:
    5,584
    Likes Received:
    71
    Location:
    Dallas Texas
    Carol, I don't think you really need that little bottle of bacteria. Colin and I have never used anything like that. However, I did eventually shift to live sand and well matured live rock to start up a tank.

    I suppose its always safer to bring up anything to add to the tank's temperature, but I'm guilty of putting in a couple of teaspoons of phytoplankton straight from the fridge.

    Good luck on your new tank.

    Nancy
     
  14. corw314

    corw314 Colossal Squid Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2002
    Messages:
    3,748
    Likes Received:
    55
    I do not think I have had a "new" tank in over 20 years....should be very interesting to see how it goes. I never realized just how outdated things were till I moved. I have shut off valves now!!! I'm so excited!!!
     
  15. corw314

    corw314 Colossal Squid Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2002
    Messages:
    3,748
    Likes Received:
    55
    Tank progress.....I bought pieces of liverock yesterday. The tank has been up for a little over a week. We have tried the little bottle of bacteria and added some chromis as recommended by the shop. So far have lost one. Ammonia is up to .50. no nitites, but low nitrates. I'm happy to see the nitrates are not off the scale anymore as in the beginning. Apparently changing the filter media and totally switching out the water has helped. I am in no rush to add any more creatures as I want to monitor the tanks progress for a few months.
     
  16. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2006
    Messages:
    19,079
    Likes Received:
    1,126
    Location:
    Gainesville, GA USA
    Looking GOOD!
     
  17. corw314

    corw314 Colossal Squid Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2002
    Messages:
    3,748
    Likes Received:
    55
    Thank you!!! I'm very excited to have it running again. Only one problem....Make sure you leave enough room behind the tank if you think you will install a protein skimmer at a later date.....Guess what I did!!!! Anyway, took a sample to LPS and they had this nifty little what looked like a scope that measures salinity. Mine is at 30 so the good news is I need to top off the tank, but can use fresh to bring the salinity down. The ammonia is 0 and the nitrites are 0, but the nitrates are 40 which is still better than it was a few months back. I added another 7lb piece of live rock and will post a new pic later after I top off the tank! They said, "Good to go" but I say I'm waiting a few months to be sure it's stable before I add my next octopus.
     
  18. corw314

    corw314 Colossal Squid Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2002
    Messages:
    3,748
    Likes Received:
    55
    Interesting thought....I have had the LFS test my salinity to find my little old swing arm is not accurate. Tonight I bought a new salinity tester and the salinity is still at 27 after a 15 gal. water change. What I am thinking is all these years I've had octopuses in my tanks, successfully and I've used the little old swing arm salinity gauge, meaning they all have been living in salinity at 28 to 30 as my gauge is about 4 points off. Just thought that was interesting as they have survived very well with the higher salinity. I'd like to hear all your thoughts on this. Anyway, I added a background and have sealed the tank. No ammonia, nitrates were at .40 before the water change I did today and I also took down a large bubble filter I always run in that tank, cleaned it and it's pushing air very nicely.
     
  19. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2006
    Messages:
    19,079
    Likes Received:
    1,126
    Location:
    Gainesville, GA USA
    My guess would be that you have had salt build up in the old unit, particularly since you have not used it in awhile. It would be interesting to fill it with hot fresh water, let it soak overnight, rinse with fresh water and then see if the reading changes any.
     

Share This Page