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Old 09-17-2011, 11:36 PM
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Stackbundles
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Question Adding cured live rock to a established tank?

My tank is 10 months old and is 75 gallons. I have 50 pounds of Live rock and want to add 50 more pounds. I have a hand full of corals and 5 fish. Eveyrthing is well in my tank and I don't want to spike any of the water levels. Any suggestions? Should I add 25 pounds at a time?

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Old 09-17-2011, 11:39 PM
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thirty5
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Is the rock cured? Is it dry? It all depends. Did it come right out of another established tank without any real time out of water???
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Old 09-17-2011, 11:45 PM
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I plan on going to the local fish store where I bought the first 50 pounds. It's cured and it will take less then an hour to transport from the store to my house.
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Old 09-18-2011, 05:27 AM
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Chris Jury
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"Cured" rock normally means that the large, obvious dead organisms in/on the rock have largely decomposed away, but there is plenty of nastiness that can and will still be generated by cured rock. It takes months in a normal tank (i.e., with lighting, flow, filtration, etc.) for cured rock to mature to the point that it should be safe to introduce to an established tank. Cured really means 'no longer noticably rancid' and curing typically takes a month or so. Mature rock has functional microbial communities, established, growing coralline algae (if exposed to light, of course) and good filtration potential. There's really no substituting for the time it takes to turn "cured" rock into mature rock, which is several months of good tank conditions.

I've seen people crash their tanks several times before by adding cured rock (even relatively modest amounts) to an established tank. If it were me, I'd either stay with the 50 lbs you have (which is plenty IMHO) or set up an inexpensive tank (saltwater, strong flow, a heater and light is sufficient) to allow the rock to mature for a couple of months before introducing it, and then do so slowly, e.g., not more than 10 lbs per week. If you're intending to have a reef tank though, I'd stick with the 50 lbs you have, as I said. People very often put too much rock in reef tanks in the beginning and a year or two or three later are kicking themselves because as the corals grow the tank begins to utterly choke itself. Providing adequate water flow throughout the tank, for instance, can be nearly impossible in packed tanks.

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Old 09-18-2011, 10:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Jury View Post
"Cured" rock normally means that the large, obvious dead organisms in/on the rock have largely decomposed away, but there is plenty of nastiness that can and will still be generated by cured rock. It takes months in a normal tank (i.e., with lighting, flow, filtration, etc.) for cured rock to mature to the point that it should be safe to introduce to an established tank. Cured really means 'no longer noticably rancid' and curing typically takes a month or so. Mature rock has functional microbial communities, established, growing coralline algae (if exposed to light, of course) and good filtration potential. There's really no substituting for the time it takes to turn "cured" rock into mature rock, which is several months of good tank conditions.

I've seen people crash their tanks several times before by adding cured rock (even relatively modest amounts) to an established tank. If it were me, I'd either stay with the 50 lbs you have (which is plenty IMHO) or set up an inexpensive tank (saltwater, strong flow, a heater and light is sufficient) to allow the rock to mature for a couple of months before introducing it, and then do so slowly, e.g., not more than 10 lbs per week. If you're intending to have a reef tank though, I'd stick with the 50 lbs you have, as I said. People very often put too much rock in reef tanks in the beginning and a year or two or three later are kicking themselves because as the corals grow the tank begins to utterly choke itself. Providing adequate water flow throughout the tank, for instance, can be nearly impossible in packed tanks.

cj
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Very Well said!!!
Also when you sometimes buy corals they may be mounted on rock already. Unless you plan on only getting tiny frags on plugs. So adding that to the tank becomes hard. I have a 28 Gal, that I am in that situation, I didnt put that much rock into the tank but hard for me to find places. I have a huge torch that needs room around it.

You could always add a small piece here and there without a problem and should not re-cycle the tank. Getting from a store is ok, but if they are a good store then the rock is turned over quickly. So they say that it may be established but it may not.

You may want to look on the forums for rock that is "established" in someone elses tank. But remember when you buy from people (well also the LFS) hitchhikers can come along. A buddy of mine bought rock from another member an it was loaded with flatworms.

This hobby can be a gamble sometimes!

As you will see in other threads, the key is patience. Take your time. Enjoy the tank as you build your own reef.

If you fill it too fast, you may get bored of it
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Old 09-18-2011, 04:24 PM
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I appreciate both of your points. It makes a lot of sense and I'm actually happy I bought only 50 pounds at first. As the tank matures, I will build the reef slowley. You guys probably saved me a big headache. Thanks again.
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