Vincent's Coral QT

Discussion in 'Tank Journals' started by Vhuang168, May 28, 2015.

  1. Vhuang168

    Vhuang168 Supporting Member

    So, this tank was purchased with the intention of being a coral QT tank. But as these things go, its gotten a little more complicated than originally planned.

    Tank is a Petco 10g special, came with heater, Whisper 10 HOB filter and a hood with LEDs.

    20lbs of Caribsea Argalive Black Hawaiian sand
    20+lbs of dry 'live' rock from Neptune

    Salt is Red Sea Coral Pro. Mixed at 1.026 and it has quite high parameters. Initial testing (with my new fancy test kits) came up with Mag@1400, Cal@489 and Alk@12.54 which matched what Red Sea listed on the tub.

    Water is RO/DI from a hodgepod of several used units I purchased. Ending up with a 6 stage filter. 1 sediment, 2 carbon with the 2nd being a special chloramine filter, the RO and a 2 stage DI with the 2nd being a silica buster. Water from the tap is low 40tds.

    I tossed in a little sand, laid in the base rocks making sure they went past the sand and onto the glass, placed the rest of the rock then tossed in the remaining sand. Water was siphoned into the tank then the last bit was poured in from the bucket. I only used about 6.5-7g of SW.

    While at Petsmart a few week prior, I spotted a Fluval C2 in tank filter that was marked down and thought it was a neat idea. Bought it but when it came time to use it, I found out that I had too much rock and sand. The filter took up almost all the empty space I had left. So I took out the Biomax media and threw on the Whisper 10 running only the Biomax, no carbon.

    To start the cycle, I purchased a bottle of Janitorial Ammonia from Ace Hardware. Dosed it to 4ppm, waited an hr then poured in a large bottle of Bio-Spira. I had bought the large bottle thinking I could save most of it for when I cycled the 40g but the instructions said to use the whole bottle so in it went.

    At that point, I hooked up the Seneye sensor hooked up to a laptop. The little chip it uses to sense ammonia and ph needed to be soaked for 48hrs before it could get accurate readings so I installed it and left it in the tank.

    No lights, just the AC10 running and a Tunze 6015 Nano powerhead I got with the 40g tank. Lots of flow with the Tunze, it was blowing sand out of the far corner and into the front area, I had to angle it upwards a little to break up the flow.

    24hrs later, the Seneye showed a 3ppm reading. A Salifert test confirmed it together with a 0.1ppm Nitrite test result.

    48hrs later, Seneye shows a 0.003ppm reading. Salifert test was <0.25. Nitrite was 0, Nitrate was 4ppm with Red Sea test kit.

    Left it running for 3 days and the readings stayed pretty consistent.

    5 days later, I did a 50% WC.
    Last edited: May 28, 2015
  2. Vhuang168

    Vhuang168 Supporting Member

    So now I've added some life!

    Started with a Peppermint shrimp! For the unavoidable invasion of Aptasia! Together with a Yasha goby/Tiger pistol shrimp pair. 3 Tongan Nassarius and 2 Trochus snails.

    The Nassarius snails are fun to watch. They burrow into the sand and just lie there. But you put in some food and they pop up! Then zoom around the tank looking for it! The Trochus just mozzy along. My tank is still too new for alage so I put in a little nori for them to graze on.

    The Yasha and pistol shrimp went straight into the rock work and disappered! I saw the Yasha for a few hours but nothing since. The pistol shrimp I still hear when the peppermint gets too close inside the rock work so I know he is still around but I do fear for the Yasha. It doesn't come out for food either so I squirt some into the rockwork after I fed the peppermint and the snails.

    So wanting a little more action in the tank, I purchased a small 6 line wrasse. It is also fun to watch, roaming in and out of the rockwork. Looking for tasty morsels. I figured I might as well get a useful fish since this IS supposed to be a coral QT, the 6 line will pick off any parasites the linger after the dips I put the coral through.

    Speaking of coral, I picked up a Zoa rock of Pink and Golds with about 6 polyps and a single head of metallic Duncan. The zoas are doing ok, opening and closing up. They are a little stressed right now, so they've slimed up a little. The Duncan wasn't too happy where I placed it first, too much flow I think so I moved it and its opened up more. Not fully inflated but at least open. I fed it a mysis shrimp and it ate it up!

    Also picked up a frag of Acan Lordhowensis, has 3 heads. Very pretty, I think this might be a rainbow variety but I'm not sure. Dipped it, acclimated it and just put it into the tank earlier this night. Put it in the middle of the tank, hopefully it will like it there. The lighting was tricky to get right.

    And a quartet of Yuma mushrooms. Got them as a package. Only wanted 1 but the shop offered me all 4 for a good price and I couldn't pass it up. 1 was on a frag disk, other 3 were loose. When I put them it, they got blown all over the place. So I setup a little low flow area in the front right of the tank but putting up an arylic L an inch or so high and cordoned it off. Put some rubble in there hoping they would attach. No luck yet. And the single that was on a disk, decided it need to go for a walk so it came off the disk and is now trying to walk across the rock. Though it got blown off and is now on the sand bed.

    Speaking of lighting. As I was cycling the tank and getting it ready, I started to think about the LEDs that came with the tank. Initially I was thinking it would be enough but I stated think about using this time in the QT to get the corals getting acclimated to the lights in the main DT. Seeing as I will be running AI Hydra 52s, I bought an AI Prime and set it up. The light is very well designed and I liked the setup and the control. Still playing the various settings but I like the 20k setting I found online the best so far.

    On the filtration side, I ran the Whisper 10 for a few days but wanted something better. So I bought a Fluval AC30. Ran a bag of Purigen, Carbon and Biomax for a few days. Then I saw an AC110 come up for sale and a mention of using it as a refugeium. That got all kinds of wheels and cogs churning in my mind. I bought it, some Chaeto and swapped out the AC30. Fired it up and was way too much flow. Sand was flying everywhere and the Yuma got tossed around. But the AC30 but but instead of the Purigen and carbon, I put in Chaeto. Pulled the LEDs off the stock hood and taped them to the back of the AC30!

    But this little experiment has really turned into something else! I just ordered a nano skimmer and will be on the look out for a deal on an AC70! Should be the perfect size and I've read others doing the same thing. They lower the flow rate by installing the impeller from the AC10/30.

    At 1 point I was thinking about drilling holes in the tank and putting another 10g under the table as a sump! Luckily I remembered it is only a QT after all. I'm now constanting reminding myself that and trying to rein in all these ideas that keep popping into my mind. "wonder if I can scrouge up some acrylic and build a 20+g frag style tank and use the 10g as a sump" type of ideas! Need to squash these until I start my 40g DT!

    Here's a crappy Iphone FTS!


    Can't wait to start the DT. Time to buy rocks!
  3. Coral reefer

    Coral reefer President

    Somebodies got the bug!
  4. Vhuang168

    Vhuang168 Supporting Member

    Here's a better fts.

    Attached Files:

  5. Vhuang168

    Vhuang168 Supporting Member

    Is there a dip for that!?! Maybe I can get enough to put into the pool and jump in!
    Coral reefer likes this.
  6. Vhuang168

    Vhuang168 Supporting Member

    Fiddling with the camera. Trying out what works and what doesn't. Definitely a learning curve here and very different than the usual.

    Rainbow Acan Lordhowensis from CRC.

  7. Vhuang168

    Vhuang168 Supporting Member

    Some new additions!

    Picked up from Enderturtle!

    Aramgeddon IIs


    Gold Maul
    Enderturtle likes this.
  8. Enderturtle

    Enderturtle Volunteer

    Goldmaul is gonna drop a baby soon based on that pic. They add a nice splash of Yellow/Orange color to the tank.

    Watch those armagheddons they grow faster than the gold mauls.

    Those Pink and Gold Palys are also a Fast grower. Watch those too as they can smother other zoas.
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2015
  9. Vhuang168

    Vhuang168 Supporting Member


    Speaking of growing fast!
  10. MolaMola

    MolaMola Supporting Member

    How long do you plan to quarantine corals before placing them in display tank?
  11. Vhuang168

    Vhuang168 Supporting Member

    I plan on qting them for 2 weeks. I dip in Coral RX and Revive after acclimation but before introducing them to the QT.

    The 2 weeks allows time for my Six Line Wrasse to pick off any parasites that linger or may have hatched from eggs that did not get eradicated by the dips. Also allows time for me to acclimate them to my lighting schedule, intensity and spectra.

    I start them in low light (for the coral so sps starts higher in the tank then zoas) and low flow (same). They will end at a location in the qt with lighting in the same ball park as low light for them in my dt n flow that they like.

    Then when I move them to the dt, they go into an area that has similar lighting as they had in the qt n I will move them around to where they like.

    Helps that my qt is running the AI Prime which is essentially 1/4 of the light in my dt which is the AI Hydra 52.

    I also used the par meter in my Seneye device to compare par values in each location.
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2015

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