Yes that old chestnut fish stocking levels

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Is it still recommended to be 1" per 5 gallons of water? if so that would only give say something like 16"of fish so if say you have a couple of clowns and a small shoal damsels/ chromis your times up ... Now I appreciate this is a guideline and especially for new tanks as the filtration system is still getting to grips . But is that really it ?

I mean what happens if you want to add a wrasse or tang or lemon peel etc etc you are going to seriously over stock given those numbers above.

Last Edit: Jul 20, 2015 8:20:13 pm by zollybosher

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Reply #1

Hi to elaborate on that, it also matters what fish you want to add and their temperaments, some fish are shy and like time to settle in whilst others say like some dwarf angels can be territorial as an example and can harass new comers. Then there's fish capability, for example you wouldn't put a strawberry dottyback in with shrimp, they are a pretty looking little fish with a murderous streak. Just like tangs need plenty of room as they see rivals as moving in on territory and food ect.
There's a fine line between success and failure like there's a difference between surviving and thriving and we are all striving for a thriving success.

HK_Fuey

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Reply #2

This has to be one of the most common questions asked, and indeed I asked it too (in fact I've asked it a few times).  So, I thought I'd start the topic off, and let people ask questions, and contribute.

Here's my current understanding...

It's not easy to answer this question, as there are so many variables.

As a general 'rule of thumb', it's often quoted that 1 inch (2.5cm) of fish (measured nose to base of tail) per 20lt is a good starting point.  This rule is flawed though, as there are issues just with this very simple sounding rule e.g. If I have a 200lt tank, I should be able to have 25cm worth of fish.  But, imagine the difference between the amount of food and waste to support say 10 x 2.5cm fish, versus that required to support 2 x 12.5cm fish.  You should consider the size the fish is likely to grow to in your tank; the shape of the fish (long and slim, or round and fat); is it a meat eater, omnivore, or algae eater?

You must also consider a lot of other factors, such as:
  • How mature the tank is - will give an idea of how good your biological filter is
  • How much liverock per litre of water you have - again, about the filtering capacity of your tank
  • What size skimmer you have
  • How wet you skim
  • How frequent and the percentage of water changes you do
  • Whether you have any nutrient export methods - such as cheato, algae scrubber, etc.
  • How effective your CUC is
  • What corals you have that will also help feed on leftovers, and contribute to the ecosystem
  • What corals you have that require additional, spot feeding, creating more waste
  • etc.

Thoughts?
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zollybosher

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Reply #3

This is slightly off topic but when to the Abyss yesterday and I know that they are not individual tanks per se all one massive system but there was a 4ft tank in there which had at least 40 yellow tangs in it @3" in size (wall of yellow) how the heck can they do that yes its bare bottom but there system must be seriously effective as this was one of maybe a hundred tanks.. no wonder anyone new to marine's would think its ok to put a few in and think nothing of it. I appreciate responsible LFS would ask what kind of set up you had but if you saw this you would think I want that ...


All the above questions you ask are perfectly sensible .. I suppose the point is everyone's tank is different it all comes down to what you put in and what you take out .. if you are prepared to do regular water changes have the biological filtration/ mechanical to cope with the waste that is produced then you can add extra inches but there is a fine line between the tipping point so you need to keep a close eye on your water readings .. also if you are going to add extra then to do it slowly and monitor any changes that take effect

Mike

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Reply #4

If you mean the biological filtration, they'll use Fluidised sand bed filters, as they're incredibly effective.

LFSs put a lot of fish into a small tank, as it's only temporary. Also, by having a lot of them, you don't get the aggression that you'd get by putting 4 yellow Tangs into your tank, as, well, try having a fight with 50 blokes who all look the same, all at once. The aggression disperses.

Abyss doesn't have the best reputation anyway. It's an impressive place, but they're a bit weird. Do a search and you'll see stories of why. They like to go against the grain and think they know best about things that are accepted global standards, a bit odd. Their owner is/was very eccentric. I met him in about 2002, he was very strange.
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hixy

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Reply #5

If you mean the biological filtration, they'll use Fluidised sand bed filters, as they're incredibly effective.

LFSs put a lot of fish into a small tank, as it's only temporary. Also, by having a lot of them, you don't get the aggression that you'd get by putting 4 yellow Tangs into your tank, as, well, try having a fight with 50 blokes who all look the same, all at once. The aggression disperses.

Abyss doesn't have the best reputation anyway. It's an impressive place, but they're a bit weird. Do a search and you'll see stories of why. They like to go against the grain and think they know best about things that are accepted global standards, a bit odd. Their owner is/was very eccentric. I met him in about 2002, he was very strange.
Mike are fluidized sand filters ok to use on reef tanks permanently. If yes what sand do they use.Are they not classed as nitrate factories.

Mick

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