O. mercatoris setup for a first timer

evan484

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Hi,
I am looking to setup an octopus tank on the cheap and decide that this was the species that would match my budget. I have 2 other reef tanks so i can say i have at least a bit of experience in salt water. I was hoping i could get a couple of different ideas for layouts from some different people. For example what kind of filter, is protein skimming nessisary, and if my 20 gallon is suitable?
Also some information about the species from anyone would be greatly apreciated.
Thanks,
Evan
 

evan484

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Thanks for the links, they were very helpful reguarding the animal itself. Can anyone tell me specific setups that would be recemended for this species. as in what kind of filter should i should use? is 20 gallons big enough and other general requirements.
Thanks,
Evan
 
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That second link describes our tank, filter, and lighting setup on post #5 of the first page: 20 gallon tank, Rena FilStar xP1 filter, red vellum covering a fluorescent bulb. You can see the liverock, crushed coral, and macro algae in the photo.
 

DWhatley

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If you have the option, I prefer an acrylic tank because of the overlapping top that most have for support. This minimizes any octoproofing needed for the mercs (not for other though). Sisturus and Medusa and later Miss Broody's offspring were housed in a a 15 gallon acrylic hex with heafty piece of LR and a Skilter filter/simmer combo. Red lighting is must if you want to observe them and the threads gholland mentioned as well as recent journals by DinoIgnacio and K0mpresd show lighting discussions.
 

evan484

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gholland;131358 said:
That second link describes our tank, filter, and lighting setup on post #5 of the first page: 20 gallon tank, Rena FilStar xP1 filter, red vellum covering a fluorescent bulb. You can see the liverock, crushed coral, and macro algae in the photo.

Thanks that is definitly a big help. Is the Rena FilStar xP1 a good enough filter or should i up grade to something bigger like the magnum pro 350 which does 350gph vs 250 i believe. With the abcence of a protien skimmer along with the huge bioload an octopus produces what should my water changes be like?

Also, does anyone have a good source for mercs?
Thanks
Evan
 

DWhatley

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Danthemarineman (TONMO name) often has them available and usually answers a PM.

I change 5 gallons of water a week in the 15 gallon as well as 5 gallons a week in the 45 (both merc tanks). My theory is the smaller the tank the more water changes (percentage) it needs and have found that 5 gallons a week, regardless of size (over 5 gallons of course, the pico gets a 98% change) seems to keep everything well balanced. Do note, however, that this is not the typical evaluation.
 

evan484

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dwhatley;131418 said:
Danthemarineman (TONMO name) often has them available and usually answers a PM.

I change 5 gallons of water a week in the 15 gallon as well as 5 gallons a week in the 45 (both merc tanks). My theory is the smaller the tank the more water changes (percentage) it needs and have found that 5 gallons a week, regardless of size (over 5 gallons of course, the pico gets a 98% change) seems to keep everything well balanced. Do note, however, that this is not the typical evaluation.

Im setting up a 20 gallon. Should i do 5 gallons at once or change 5 gallons over the course of the week?

Also does any one have a suggestion for a filter for a tank that size?
-Evan
 

DWhatley

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As much as it would seem like too much at once, I do it one time a week and have never had a problem (keep in mind this tank has been set up for several years but has had several bottom substrate changes). As much as they get a bad rap, I like the all in one Skilter skimmer (with additional air stone) for the small tank. The cascade helps keep the surface tension broken for gas exchange and my water stays clear and tests on the money for 0's on ammonia and nitrite. The well stirred sand bed and the filter keep my nitrates just in the detectable range.
 

evan484

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dwhatley;131474 said:
As much as it would seem like too much at once, I do it one time a week and have never had a problem (keep in mind this tank has been set up for several years but has had several bottom substrate changes). As much as they get a bad rap, I like the all in one Skilter skimmer (with additional air stone) for the small tank. The cascade helps keep the surface tension broken for gas exchange and my water stays clear and tests on the money for 0's on ammonia and nitrite. The well stirred sand bed and the filter keep my nitrates just in the detectable range.

Intresting, most of what I've seen is people using canister filters. Honestly I am not quite sure the mechanics of them and the advantages. Can someone explain. Did the since the Skilter skimmer is a HOB did it make octo proofing difficult?
Thanks,
Evan
 

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