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Tank Q's

Dec 14, 2007
I have a few questions regarding my new (5 week old), 12 gallon tank.

1) I did my first water change, a 3 gallon, last weekend because my nitrates were at 20 and my ommonia was at .25. After the water change, my nitrates have done nothing but rise to the 80 they are at today, and ammonia is at 0. How do I lower my nitrates and why are they rising?

2) A couple nights ago, I saw 2 small (2cm), blue worms on the glass, about .5 inches out of the water. When I pushed them in, they started wriggling like snakes which caused them to swim around the tank. What are they?

3) When should I place one of those small fish (which type) ino the tank to get it used to a bio load?
whoops, one more I forgot about

Do you think it would be safe to eventually put a sea apple in my tank, I have read horror stories about them dying and wiping the whole tank out, but they look so beautiful. Are there any warning signs of impending death?
oh... and one more, sorry :oops:

Does anyone enrich the diet of their snails or hermits and what with? The online fish stores always tell you too, then when I consult an experienced aquariest, they say it's pointless. whats up!!
I would avoid cukes of any kind personally. Avoiding any obvious dangers like powerhead intakes can help but we had one get injured and I found it later after it took out several seahorses.

The worms may be baby bristleworms. This would be a good sign.

As for your nitrates, sounds like your cycle is just doing its thing. Hold off on water changes and just wait it out another week or two. Just keep testing it every couple of days to see what's going on. When your ammonia stays at 0 for a few days start your water changes and then you should be safe to add a small fish. Then just watch your readings regularly.

Just pick some fish you like, do research on them specifically, and choose one that will fit into what you're planning for the tank.
Do not enrich, they are reef janiotrs that will eat your excess food and help keep your tank clean. In a tank that small you really need to feed very little to throw your levels completely off. I had a sea apple and one day I woke up to a tank that looked like someone poured a gallon of milk into it. All of my prized fish were floating, moving in a circular pattern in the "flow of death". Sea apples get old to look at pretty fast.
be sure to keep the LITTLE bit of food thing in mind.... i have a 29 reef with a tomato clown and i feed it MAYBE once a week... it is very easy to go overboard... and in that small of a tank things will go bad fast... the fish isn't going to starve and yes they always look hungery and will try to convince you of it...
Faaborg;115603 said:
Does anyone use a Refugium? What do you have in yours and is it working well for you?

Yes. It has a deep sand bed (about 6 inches) live rock rubble, and the chaetomorpha grows so thick it's like a solid mesh filter filling all the open space above the sand. I have seen a major improvement in the condition and appearance of my tank since adding it, not to mention a very dramatic increase of the pod and mysis population. 90% of any slime that shows up stays in the refugium instead of the display.