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The salty side

Nick potts

Member
Joined
25 Sep 2014
Messages
625
Location
Torbay
Thanks, I was thinking that, some equipment is a must for some and not for others I'm quickly seeing.
I'm guessing that apart from the light most of the equipment that you seem to accumulate when keeping freshwater fish is suitable for saltwater, within reason.
Yep pretty much, the only really specialised bit of equipment I would class as needed for a reef is a protein skimmer.

Lights are generally a lot bluer on reefs but no reason that you can't use any light.
 

shangman

Member
Joined
13 Jul 2020
Messages
594
Location
London
Thanks, I was thinking that, some equipment is a must for some and not for others I'm quickly seeing.
I'm guessing that apart from the light most of the equipment that you seem to accumulate when keeping freshwater fish is suitable for saltwater, within reason.
I think if you keep a macroalgae tank you can use freshwater lights, @tigahboy.h2o (on Instagram) uses Twinstar.
 

SRP3006

Member
Joined
18 Feb 2019
Messages
730
Location
GB
the only really specialised bit of equipment I would class as needed for a reef is a protein skimmer.
It's good to hear that for certain as that's one of the bits of equipment that seems to be used and not used depending on the aquarist
 

Joel S

Member
Joined
13 May 2013
Messages
227
Location
Oxford
I don’t use a skimmer with my soft coral, macro, and mangrove tank. I need those nutrients and have to dose more daily or they bottom out and dinoflagellates appear. Keeping on top of salinity and calcium/magnesium/kh has been a learning curve but I use less equipment (unless you count test kits) than on my freshwater tanks...
 

foxfish

Member
Joined
11 Oct 2009
Messages
4,822
Location
Guernsey
Hi Nick, yes you are right you really do need a chiller and an insulated tank with a double glazed front glass but…. Only if you really want to compete with the best of the tropical reef tanks.
My old set up did indeed have a chiller set up in my unheated garage although it did not actually come on that often at least not once the tank is down to temp.
I set the summer temperature at 17c and the winter at 14c, that was fine for even deeper water creatures and seaweeds.
However if you only collect from above the half tide mark, then every creature you find will be tough as old boots and capable of surviving extreme conditions !!
On a hot summer day a shallow half tide rock pool, can reach 25-30c and if it rains the salt can be diluted to almost fresh water in very small pools, then the tide comes in and in an instant the conditions are completely different = very tough creatures.
My point was … some folk will spend thousands on setting up a tropical marine tank and thousands running it every year where as a high tech local cold water tank might still cost quite a bit to set up but the running cost are cheap and the stock is free. Further to that a basic half tide local marine tank, is very cheap to set up and run.
I just find it interesting that so few cold water reef tanks are ever featured in the magazine or on forums?
 
Last edited:
Joined
30 Aug 2020
Messages
320
Location
Bristol
Although not a direct answer to Dinos question, I would like to ask why all you marine keepers don’t keep local marine tanks?
There are some complications like temperature control but our own shores can offer a lot of beautiful and interesting creatures all for free!
I have not kept a full on marine tank for 25 years now although I was pretty obsessed at one time, I ended up specialising in cold water marines in a double glazed, insulated and refrigerated 50 gallon tank.
However from an early age and for 20 odd years, I kept small, locale marine, cold water tanks that cost me very little money!
(I do live close to the sea)
had cod, wolffish etc in a tank for a while, they were at the lab though and with unlimited water from the fjord and the ability to have it come through at any temp you wanted it was a very easy way to keep them.

Rockpool specialists are very hardy, and can take a huge amount of temperature and salinity variability. like today, the shade temp was 27oc, a Rockpool in full sun would have been well over that, but on the turning of the tide it would suddenly be back at 10oc and its oxygen and salinity range would have been all over the place in that time, guess a lot are overlooked as seen as dull compared to tropicals. though a snakelock or strawberry anemone can easily hold its own up to a bubble tip.
 

foxfish

Member
Joined
11 Oct 2009
Messages
4,822
Location
Guernsey
Perhaps overall more subtle but still a glorious variety and potential!
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Aqua360

Member
Joined
15 Feb 2016
Messages
1,631
Location
paisley
For anyone considering saltwater, and at risk of being strung up by other members on here, i've found it to be a lot more engaging than any other type of tank I've kept, I'd get rid of all my freshwater tanks before my marine.

I think this is maybe because it feels like such an alien environment compared to freshwater, but it is highly enjoyable.

In regards to equipment, I have light, heater, stock pump, and an auto top up for RO, that's it. You can make it as complicated as you like, but for LPS and soft corals it doesn't need to be difficult.
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ScareCrow

Member
Joined
28 Jan 2019
Messages
270
Location
South west
I used to watch El Fabs nano reef thread. It's a great example of what is achievable in a nano tank and from low tech to high tech as he develops the tank.
I used to use LED par38 e27 bulbs and blue rope lights. So lighting can be cheap but still get decent results.
As others have said skimmers have pros and cons but on a nano, doing a large water change isn't a big deal.
Testing and especially testing what you're dosing is really useful but also some corals respond quickly. Green Hystrix Seriatopora Guttatus was the coral version of the duckweed index in my tank.
Research everything before you buy it and decide what you want to keep and stick to it. I enjoyed the research part but the more I researched the more I collected and my tank looked more like a frag tank than a display tank.
Moving house ended my marine keeping though as I couldn't keep the tank cool enough in the summer.
 

Joel S

Member
Joined
13 May 2013
Messages
227
Location
Oxford
For anyone considering saltwater, and at risk of being strung up by other members on here, i've found it to be a lot more engaging than any other type of tank I've kept, I'd get rid of all my freshwater tanks before my marine.

I think this is maybe because it feels like such an alien environment compared to freshwater, but it is highly enjoyable.

In regards to equipment, I have light, heater, stock pump, and an auto top up for RO, that's it. You can make it as complicated as you like, but for LPS and soft corals it doesn't need to be difficult.
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After 25 years of freshwater planted and just over 1 of saltwater, I more or less agree! I wouldn’t want to choose between salt and freshwater really, although with the heat and electric issues that life on a boat throws up any more of a complex saltwater setup will definitely have to wait until I’m ever on dry land again.
 

Gary Nelson

Member
Joined
20 Jan 2011
Messages
1,292
Location
Leicestershire
Here is my Fluval Nano, I’ve started back up on a nano planted tank…. Good to be back
 

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