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Old 10-06-2011, 12:44 PM   #1
reef_of_flames
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Clean Up Crew


What would be a good clean up crew for a new reef tank?
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Old 10-06-2011, 12:50 PM   #2
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There are all kinds. Most often crabs, hermits and snails are used.

Hermits: red and blue leg
Crabs: Emerald, Arrowhead
snails: cerith, astrea, nassarius(nassarius' are meat eaters, so better to add once you start feeding the tank)

You also have stars, shrimps(skunk, peppermints,etc) and others. But it's usually safe and easy to start with the 3 listed above.
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Old 10-06-2011, 12:50 PM   #3
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it depends on a few things...do you have a sandbed? how many gallons? how old is the tank?
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Old 10-06-2011, 12:51 PM   #4
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How big of a tank?

A variety of different critters is always good.
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Old 10-06-2011, 01:40 PM   #5
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go to reefcleaners.org John will design you a very nice crew. I've ordered from him before, and definitely the best prices and service...by a looooooonng shot

When you get there, there is a tab for custom clean-up-crews near the top of the webpage. Hard to miss it
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Old 10-06-2011, 06:29 PM   #6
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i have a 60g tank that i'm setting up. my dry rock should be in 2mro.
i have aragonite sand (40lbs) n its maybe 2 or 3in deep
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Old 10-06-2011, 06:36 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ann_A View Post
go to reefcleaners.org John will design you a very nice crew. I've ordered from him before, and definitely the best prices and service...by a looooooonng shot

When you get there, there is a tab for custom clean-up-crews near the top of the webpage. Hard to miss it
cool page!
i just checked it out and did the custom CUC. so i just have to wait for their response
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Old 10-07-2011, 12:34 PM   #8
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If you do anything on line, ONLY do custom. Most of them are way over stocked for a needed cleanup crew. Their 55g recommendation is more than I have in my 175g reef, by quite a bit. I prefer to start small and add slowly until an equilibrium is reached. This way critters aren't dying on you via starvation, which can cause different problems. Also, too many members in the CUC can "hide" issues temporarily that may come back to haunt you down the road, such as overfeeding, too many nutrients in the water, etc.
I have had a few people on here say that this guy will custom design a crew for you that is far different than the recommendations on the site, so that may be a good thing. Just be very careful that you aren't getting too many.

Last note, determine what you want in the tank long term, then build the CUC around it. For example, hermits have been known to eat snails and walk on soft corals that could possibly damage them. Some fish will eat shrimp (many gobies, blennies, etc) so you may want to avoid shrimp. Crabs, in general, are opportunistic, so you may need to feed differently with them in the tank so they don't start eating things you don't want them eating. I'd suggest getting an idea of what you want, talk to the guy on the site recommended above, then come back and post your ideas on TRT to get some feedback BEFORE you actually buy. Hope that helps.
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Old 10-08-2011, 12:42 PM   #9
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I heard that it's better to start out with the CUC, is that true?
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Old 10-11-2011, 03:49 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ann_A View Post
go to reefcleaners.org John will design you a very nice crew. I've ordered from him before, and definitely the best prices and service...by a looooooonng shot

When you get there, there is a tab for custom clean-up-crews near the top of the webpage. Hard to miss it
I finally got a response...
50 Dwarf Ceriths - small effective cleaners
21 Nassarius
17 Florida Ceriths
14 Blue Legs
9 Large Nerite and 7 Small to medium Nerites
1 five pack of mangroves
1 chaeto and maybe some gracilaira

However, this seems like a lot. What does everybody think?
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Old 10-11-2011, 04:24 PM   #11
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How big is the tank and what are you planning to put in there for livestock? That will have a large say in if this is a good CUC for you or not.

I wouldn't really call mangroves and/or chaeto part of a CUC generally, but don't know how your conversation went with them. They are usually something more for nutrient control, but in a new tank, you shouldn't be having any nutrient issues yet.
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Old 10-11-2011, 04:30 PM   #12
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i have a 60g tank that I want to make into a reef tank. So far i have 55lbs of dry rock and I think sunday I'm going to buy ~40lbs live rock to seed the dry.
So I'm going to have fish, corals, and I would like some inverts
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Old 10-11-2011, 05:32 PM   #13
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90-100lbs may be too much for the 55g tank depending on how big the rock is. Just be sure you leave plenty of room for swimming, etc. The more rock, the less water in the tank, which means the less O2 for the inhabitants.

As for the CUC, complete overkill. For a point of reference:

In my 55g FOWLR, I have the following: 8 astrea snails, 8 nassarius, 3-5 cerith (I should closer to 10), 6 blue legged hermits, and a peppermint shrimp. I have zero algae issues in this tank.

In my 175g reef, I have 1 nerite (great snails, just hard to find at my LFS), 10 nassarius, 5-12 cerith (again, could use a few more), about 10 turbos, 10-12 astreas, 2-3 cleaner shrimp, 1-6 peppermint shrimp, 0-2 emerald crabs. To be fair, I also have two tangs, a lawnmower blenny, and a rabbitfish in this tank. I have zero algae issues in this tank either. Some of the numbers are listed as a range because I haven't seen them in ages, but there is a lot of room to hide the LR.

The reef is over 2 years old and the FOWLR is about a year old.

If you in a newer tank, there isn't much food there for the CUC to eat. This is why I always suggest adding the CUC slowly and keep adding a little at a time until they hit a point where they can keep up. I buy a few snails once every month or two to replace any that die (or the hermits eat ), but that is it.

I'll defer to others on adding the LR after initial cycle. Adding too much at one time can kick start a new cycle. Just be careful with that.
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Old 10-11-2011, 05:34 PM   #14
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I'm curious...what conversation led the the recommendation of mangroves?
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Old 10-11-2011, 07:49 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by richkor View Post
90-100lbs may be too much for the 55g tank depending on how big the rock is. Just be sure you leave plenty of room for swimming, etc. The more rock, the less water in the tank, which means the less O2 for the inhabitants.

I'll defer to others on adding the LR after initial cycle. Adding too much at one time can kick start a new cycle. Just be careful with that.
The tank is really 62g lol i did the calculations based on the volume.
People have been telling me that I should have 1.5lbs rock/ g. So ~90lb is the goal.

My tank just has the substrate and dry rock, NO WATER yet. I'll add the water when I get the LR this weekend. I plan on seeding the dry with the live, so I don't think I have to worry about another cycle starting. I'm also going to add some rock in the sump for some extra bio filtration.
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