Aquarium Forum banner

1 - 6 of 6 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
167 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hi! I have a 3 gallon tank that I've been thinking about making into a reef tank. But I have never had one before so I have a lot of questions. How long after adding the water could I add the live sand? is there any specific live rock, anemone or other invertebrates that would work well in the tank? and one of the last questions off the top of my head is what is an ideal amount of watts of lighting for this size of tank? Also if there is anything else that I would need to know that you are willing to share it would really help! Thanks so much in advance!
-Kristopher.
 

·
Entertainment Commitee
Joined
·
314 Posts
Hi! I have a 3 gallon tank that I've been thinking about making into a reef tank. But I have never had one before so I have a lot of questions. How long after adding the water could I add the live sand? is there any specific live rock, anemone or other invertebrates that would work well in the tank? and one of the last questions off the top of my head is what is an ideal amount of watts of lighting for this size of tank? Also if there is anything else that I would need to know that you are willing to share it would really help! Thanks so much in advance!
-Kristopher.
did i hear 3 gallon*n1
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,770 Posts
if u are a beginner in the SW hobby u MUST have a bigger tank if u want to keep any fish.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
278 Posts
Wow tanks in this size range have been popular here of late. might want to check out one of the other threads that is along the same lines as the thread you have posted. You can garner a lot of information from that one.

You need to add the live rock and sand to the tank when you add the water. You then need to get a test kit and monitor the water for the next 4-5 weeks as the tank cycles. You will know when the cycle has finished when there is 0 ammonia, 0 nitrites and your Nitrates are no longer increasing. Do a 1/2 gallon water change and then test the water 2-3 days later and see where your parameters are at. When the nitrates are going down and staying down below 10 on the test kit you can start adding things to the tank s-l-o-w-l-y.

I would start by adding a Scarelt Reef Hermit or 3-4 Dwarf Blue Leg Hermits. I would also add 3 or so Mararita/Astrea/Banded Trochus snails. Adding about 4 Nassarious snails would also be recommended too. This will be your clean up crew. They will handle the duties of keeping algae in check and eating any crude in the tank, hence the term "Clean Up Crew". This would give you some activity in your tank while you wait to make the next move.

About a week or so later you might want to add a Cleaner Shrimp or some kind of decorative shrimp such as a Coral Banded Shrimp. Since you have no fish you will need to drop a tiny scrap of food off in the tank for the little guy to eat every couple of days. Just be careful to not over feed the tank!

During this 3-4 week period you should be doing small weekly water changes. I would suggest about a quart of water twice a week to keep the water parameters looking good and solid. You should also be testing the water once or twice a week too. Once the water quality is rock solid and stable you can start thinking about adding some corals once you have suffcient lighting on the tank.

For lighting you will want about 18 watts of lighting. Something such as a 9 watt actinic and a 9 watt Daylight in an aqualight fixture should be adequate for a number of soft corals and maybe a small LPS coral a little later down the road.

Some soft corals that would do very well in a tank such as this one would be Green Starbusrt Polyps, Xenia, Zoanthids, Palys, Mushrooms, Ricordia, Yellow Polyps (no pepermint shrimp). Many of these are fairly hardy and colorful corals that should give you a nice display and add some "visual Wow Factor" to your tank. Add a little somethink like these to your tank and allow about a week or two between each additional new introduction to allow your water parameters to adjust and compensate for the added bio-load. I would suggest staying away from any of the various Leather type corals unless your going to have an "All Leather" coral tank. These corals put off growth inhibitors and in a tank this small will likely cause you some issues with "Chemical warfare" being waged in the tank.

As you progress you might be able to add something like a Candy Cane or Trumpit Coral. These are pretty nice little LPS corals that can be done in a tank like yours. While they send out sweeper tenticals they are very short on these corals and shouldnt be an issue if the coral is small and has some space between it and the rest of the stuff in your tank. Some Blastos might even be doable as well as your experience and knowledge level expands. I dont recommend Hammer/Torch or Frog spawn corals. Brain corals probably wont do so well either as they wont likely have enough space to keep them from stinging other corals.

As petlover516 mentioned, fish are really a no-go in a tank this small. I have seen a few people who have done it and gotten away with it, but this is a challange best left to the more advanced reefer as even a small fish in a tank this small is quiet the balancing act.

There is a lot more to the game than what I have mentioned here, but this is a crude road map of a path you can follow and end up with a nice display and experience minimal bumps in the road along the way. Before you add one drop of water to the tank, do yourself a huge favor...do some major research and planning and ask a gazillion questions before you even start. It will save you a lot of money and a lot of head aches if you have a solid game plan and adequate knowledge base before you even start.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
167 Posts
Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Thank you so much Ritsuko! But just to make things clear for everyone I DO NOT plan on adding fish. I have 2 fresh water tanks and I know about bio-load and that fish need swimming space. I just wanted to do something with my 3 gallon and I know reefs are very colorful and fun to keep. But any ways thanks for answering my questions! I've been doing quite a bit of research and I've been planning as well. When I go to my local family ran pet store I'll be sure do discuss with them everything that will need to be done to keep my reef healthy and running smoothly. I just wanted to get some answers on some of the basic questions I had so I could have an idea on things. So thanks very much!
 
1 - 6 of 6 Posts
Top