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http://indianaquariumhobbyist.com/community/ :: View topic - Restarting a FOWLR tank
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Restarting a FOWLR tank
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ramsarma1972
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 25, 2012 8:49 am Post subject: Restarting a FOWLR tank Reply with quote

 I  have  48'  x  24'  x  24'  (  115  gallons)marine  tank  with  40  kg  live  rock.  The  sump  is  36'  x  18'  x18'  but  may  hold  only  about  10  gallons  of  water  since  it  has  finger  corals,  coral  sand  and  ceramic  rings.  The  lighting  was  4  x  40W  PLL  and  3  blue  CFL  lamps  11W.  The  tank  was  set  up  in  January  2010  and  was  running  till  June  2011.  For  various  reasons  i  could  not  maintain  the  tank  and  so  gave  away  the  inmates.
 
 On  Sunday  i  thought  of  reviving  the  tank  after  more  than  18  months.  The  little  water  in  the  sump  has  dried  up  and  the  water  in  the  main  tank  had  reduced  to  1/3  its  height  due  to  evaporation.  The  rocks  were  still  within  the  water.  The  hygrometer  showed  1.030  and  water  had  no  fowl  smell.  I  could  not  test  for  ammonia  or  NO2  since  my  kits  had  all  expired.  I  dismantled  the  plumbing  to  the  sump  and  then  topped  up  the  water  in  the  tank  and  now  the  hygrometer  reads  1.023.  The  two  power  heads  os  1250  lph  each  have  been  working  since  Sunday  night.  I  have  removed  the  skimmer  and  washed  it  fully  but  not  installed  the  same  as  i  plan  to  shift  the  tank  to  a  new  position.
 
 I  have  the  following  doubts
 
 1)  The  rock  in  the  main  tank  has  always  remained  immersed  in  water.  The  lights  were  off  and  salinity  would  have  been  very  high.  Some  parts  of  the  rock  have  turned  white,  most  of  it  is  covered  with  green  hair  algae  and  some  parts  of  rock  are  dark  in  colour.  Is  the  rock  still  live??
 
 2)  The  water  is  more  than  18  months  old.  I  propose  to  change  the  water  only  when  i  am  shifting  the  tank.  Till  then  can  i  cycle  the  tank  with  the  same  water  now  and  do  a  90%  water  change  and  continue  cycling  next  week?
 
 3)The  PLL  lamps  have  failed  or  maybe  the  chokes.  I  propose  to  buy  20  w  led  floodlight  fixtures  2  nos  and  continue  to  use  the  blue  CFL  lamps.  Your  views  invited.
 
 Please  advice.
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Gulls
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 25, 2012 12:58 pm Post subject: Re: Restarting a FOWLR tank Reply with quote

 Dear  Ram
 Cannot  really  say  whether  the  rocks  are  still  live.  Were  the  powerheads  running  when  the  the  inmates  were  given  away?
 18  months  is  a  long  time.  Even  if  some  of  the  life  forms  managed  to  survive  the  period,  would  suggest  a  water  change  (  about  70-80%)  and  a  minimum  cycling  time  of  15  days.  You  can  use  some  rock/bacteria  form  your  running  sump  to  seed  the  rocks  in  the  DP.  This  would  speed  up  the  process.
 Water  testing  have  to  be  undertaken  before  you  add  any  livestock.
 in  my  opinion  :
 Move  the  tank  to  the  desired  place  
 Undertake  a  major  water  change
 use  stuff  from  your  running  sump  to  re-seed  just  to  be  sure
 test  the  water  for  cycle  completion  (  week  -15  days)
 take  a  decision  post  checking  the  parameters.
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ramsarma1972
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 25, 2012 1:26 pm Post subject: Re: Restarting a FOWLR tank Reply with quote

 Gulls,
 
 I  am  planning  a  water  change  maybe  atfter  a  week  when  i  will  have  to  empty  the  tank  with  with  view  to  shift  the  location  of  the  tank.  As  mentioned  in  the  initial  post  i  am  planning  a  100%  water  change  with  water  collected  from  the  sea  when  the  tank  is  being  re-set  at  new  location.  I  will  go  through  the  normal  cycling  process  and  test  for  parameters  as  soon  as  i  get  fresh  testing  kits.  Not  thinking  of  any  livestock  as  if  now.
 
 The  sump  is  absolutely  dry,  i  don't  think  there  would  be  any  beneficial  bacteria  at  all.  I  was  planning  to  wash  the  crushed  coral  and  coral  sand  before  resetting  the  sump  so  that  there  will  be  no  other  problems  with  the  main  tank  when  things  are  up  and  running.
 
 I  was  surprised  to  see   green  and  pinkish  hair  algae  on  the  rocks  after  18  months  of  neglect.  The  water  also  did  not  give  any  fowl  smell,  also  some  of  the  rocks  still  have  some  dark  patches,  not  purple  at  all.  I  was  expecting  the  rock  to  have  turned  white  and  water  to  be  stinking.  These  positives  gave  me  some  hope  that  the  rock  is  not  dead  after  all.
 
 Any  ways  will  wait  for  other  comments  and  then  take  a  call  after  a  week  when  i  will  have  to  shift  the  tank.  The  testing  kits  would  also  arrive  in  the  meanwhile  and  will  do  the  tests  and  post  results.
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asak
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 25, 2012 4:25 pm Post subject: Re: Restarting a FOWLR tank Reply with quote

 As  long  as  the  rock  was  in  salt  water  for  the  entire  period  I  will  still  have  life.  In  a  way  your  rock  is  better  than  newly  cured  live  rock  as  most  of  the  pests  would  have  died  by  now.  The  only  issue  is  phosphate  accumulation  in  the  rock  which  may  lead  to  a  prolonged  algae  problem  once  the  lights  are  turned  on.
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ramsarma1972
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 28, 2012 3:56 pm Post subject: Re: Restarting a FOWLR tank Reply with quote

 The  power  heads  have  been  working  over  the  last  few  days  and  the  water  remains  clear.  I  have  noticed  some  flaking  over  the  corraline  growth  on  the  rocks.  The  hair  algae  worries  me.  I  am  planning  to  shift  and  reset  the  tank  over  the  wekend  together  with  an  almost  100%  water  change.  
 
 Should  i  do  a  light  brushing  over  the  rocks  to  part  remove  the  hair  algae  and  some  of  the  flakes  on  the  rock  or  should  i  try  a  heavier  brushing  to  remove  most  of  the  hair  algae  and  the  flakes  on  the  rock?  The  doubt  is  since  i  may  not  be  able  to  do  a  water  change  after  resetting  the  tank  at  the  fresh  location.
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ramsarma1972
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 29, 2012 12:55 pm Post subject: Re: Restarting a FOWLR tank Reply with quote

 Still  to  get  my  test  kits.  In  the  meanwhile,  i  have  thoroughly  cleaned  the  rocks  in  saltwater  with  a  brush  and  shifted  the  rocks  to  a  temporary  tank  with  fresh  salt  water  and  shifted  the  power  heads  into  the  temp  tank.  No  lights  though.  I  thought  the  best  way  would  be  to  start  fresh  from  scratch  and  so  will  cycle  the  tank  with  my  own  rocks  as  though  i  have  received  the  rocks  fresh.
 
 I  noticed  that  when  the  hair  algae  had  been  removed,  most  of  the  coraline  growth  beneath  it  had  gone.  Its  heart  breaking  but  then  atleast  i  have  some  coraline  growth  on  the  rocks  that  i  could  expect  to  regrow.
 
 I  am  not  sure  if  what  i  have  done  is  correct  but  then  with  no  other  inputs  i  had  to  take  a  call.
 
 Feedback  and  guidance  is  appreciated.
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ks
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 29, 2012 1:24 pm Post subject: Re: Restarting a FOWLR tank Reply with quote

 Dont  bother  much  about  coralline  algae  .  They  will  resurface  provided  the  parameters  (Cal,  Alk..etc)  are  optimum.
 
   Make  sure  your  parameters  are  right  and  get  it  tested.  
 
 You  could  have  treated  your  rocks  to  avoid  phosphate  leaching.
 
 Tks
 KS
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ramsarma1972
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 29, 2012 3:49 pm Post subject: Re: Restarting a FOWLR tank Reply with quote

 @  Ks  -  reassuring  words  for  sure.  I  have  decided  to  go  through  the  process  and  so  will  go  by  the  book.  Could  you  enlighten  me  on  treatment  for  phosphate  leaching.
 
 I  am  using  sea  water  (  Water  from  the  sea  and  not  using  fresh  water  +  salts).  To  top  up  i  propose  to  use  RO+UV  treated   water  and  this  i  hope  will  prevent  phosphates  from  entering  the  tank.
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Gulls
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 30, 2012 3:41 pm Post subject: Re: Restarting a FOWLR tank Reply with quote

 Dear  Ram
 Never  used  Sea  water  directly.  Cannot  comment  on  the  quality.
 When  you  start  from  scrape,  new  developments  may  have  various  scopes.
 It  depends  on  many  varying  factors.  
 Good  you  have  decided  to  be  patient  and  take  one  step  at  a  time.
 Keep  on  posting  the  develpments.  Experts  may  get  a  clear  picture  and  would  be  n  a  better  position  to  advice.
 
 Hope  you  have  check  other  equipments  (  skimmers/chillers)  to  be  working  and  is  in  a  ready  to  g  position.
 
 All  the  best
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 30, 2012 10:41 pm Post subject: Re: Restarting a FOWLR tank Reply with quote

 Tank  set  with  live  rock  and  two  power  heads  running.  The  sump  will  be  set  up  tomorrow.  All  equipment  including  skimmer  in  hand.  Hopefully  within  24  hours  the  circulation  from  tank  to  sump  and  back  to  tank  will  be  operational.  The  lights  will  be  up  on  2nd  October  and  so  will  my  test  kits.  Will  do  my  first  test  on  2nd  and  then  decide  on  way  forward.  Will  go  a  bit  slow  with  lights  since  i  fear  a  green  hair  algae  problem.
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ramsarma1972
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 30, 2012 10:42 pm Post subject: Re: Restarting a FOWLR tank Reply with quote

 Tank  set  with  live  rock  and  two  power  heads  running.  The  sump  will  be  set  up  tomorrow.  All  equipment  including  skimmer  in  hand.  Hopefully  within  24  hours  the  circulation  from  tank  to  sump  and  back  to  tank  will  be  operational.  The  lights  will  be  up  on  2nd  October  and  so  will  my  test  kits.  Will  do  my  first  test  on  2nd  and  then  decide  on  way  forward.  Will  go  a  bit  slow  with  lights  since  i  fear  a  green  hair  algae  problem.
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ramsarma1972
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 01, 2012 4:43 pm Post subject: Re: Restarting a FOWLR tank Reply with quote

 The  sump  is  also  up  and  running  with  the  skimmer  and  the  return  pump  and  water  levels  in  the  main  tank  and  the  sump  stable  after  about  5  hours  of  running.  The  water  level  and  air-intake  to  skimmer  had  to  be  fine-tuned  and  hopefully  that  should  also  be  stable  by  night.
 
 Still  awaiting  my  light  fixtures,  wave  makers  and  test  kit.
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 01, 2012 4:59 pm Post subject: Re: Restarting a FOWLR tank Reply with quote

 Where  are  you  getting  the  natural  Salt  water  from?
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ramsarma1972
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 01, 2012 10:16 pm Post subject: Re: Restarting a FOWLR tank Reply with quote

 A  supplier  of  lobsters  near  Kovalam  in  Trivandrum  is  my  source  of  sea  water.  He  uses  a  pump  to  maintain  a  flow  in  his  tanks  that  house  lobsters.  I  just  get  him  to  divert  some  water  into  the  barrels.
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ramsarma1972
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 01, 2012 10:17 pm Post subject: Re: Restarting a FOWLR tank Reply with quote

 A  supplier  of  lobsters  near  Kovalam  in  Trivandrum  is  my  source  of  sea  water.  He  uses  a  pump  to  maintain  a  flow  in  his  tanks  that  house  lobsters.  I  just  get  him  to  divert  some  water  into  the  barrels.
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