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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all! I've lurked around here for a while, and your experience has really helped me maintain my tank and keep my fish happy and healthy! I've kept aquariums since I was very little, but didn't ever set up a real salt tank until I moved into my college's dorm this year. It's been kind of a wild time figuring out all of the appropriate care for my tank, but I've stuck with it, and I'm now the proud curator of a Porc and a Jeweled moray! They're both really young, and are definitely growing fast. I have them in a 20gal FOWLR right now, which is basically just a long-term QT until I can move them into something like a 100gal or larger, back home. I'm totally aware that this is unacceptable for these fish long-term, so I've saved some money to upgrade them when I'm firmly rooted back home, 'cause there's no chance of getting a 100gal into a residence hall unnoticed.:funny: I have a small hair algae problem, and a classic side-of-the-tank algae problem as well, and I was wondering if anyone knew of anything that would effectively remove/control them long-term? I'm not actually interested in killing the hair algae for now, it's one of the few planted things that can survive with the pitiful 18w bulb I've got in there right now. My puffer goes after anything that moves, especially inverts, but also small fish, up to an inch or two in size. He cleared out about 10-12 Mollies I put in as vacation food in about 2 weeks. He's well adjusted to eel tankmates, but his previous Snowflake bro jumped ship through the filter outflow, which is now firmly taped to the tank. Any inverts that could survive a Porc attack? Small left-handed hermits seem to be safe, as are some kind of Cerith cone shell snail that eats the biofilms and not the algae. He eats Nassarius, Nerites and Urchins as well, can confirm. I think he got an Astaria Turban Snail once too. The algae grows too slowly for turbo snails, and my Porc figured out that the lettuce sea slug I tried (I know they only temporarily help, but it was super cute) in about half a second and minced him. I'm kind of running out of options, and it doesn't help that I can't upgrade them yet and just throw a wrasse or cleaner fish in there. Honestly, if there was a magical saltwater pleco, that'd be what I want. On another note, does anyone have experience with Hydrazoans? I've got a colony/plague of small white Hydras that won't go away. I can post up pictures if anyone is interested, because I've never seen anything like them outside of biology lectures on freshwater cnidarians. They don't seem to make medusa stages either, but they may do it when I'm not watching. Water parameters are nominal, Ph around 8.1, Nitrates and Ammonia a flat 0, and Nitrates that waver between low(<20ppm) and red-lining high(higher than my test kit can give results for) after feedings. It may be the food I use, which is exclusively clams on the half-shell, atlantic cod from the grocery store (the only thing my jeweled moray will eat are fish/krill) and frozen peas/lima beans for Porky, all teated with garlic powder and sometimes cane sugar for flavor. I used to feed them whole silversides. I'm sorry that this is a sort of dump post, and I'll probably chop it up into the relevant threads later, but if anyone happens to know about these issues, I'd love any opinion.
 

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Welcome to TRT!

How long are you planning on keeping these guys in a 20g tank? It won't take long for stress/illness/aggression to occur in a tank that small. If you're not planning on something like a 180 in the next year I'd consider trading them to your LFS for stock that will be happy long term in that size tank. And honestly I'd be surprised if they made it that long...

For your algae, how long has the tank been running? New tanks go through algae stages and with proper maintenance and good water (are you using tap) it'll pass in time. The best cleaner of the tank is always going to be you. No CUC member will do the job you can with a toothbrush and lots of water changes.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Hi! They're going to be in there for less than a month. I know it's not ideal right now, but I try to rearrange the rockwork every so often so the porc doesn't get bored, and I do fairly frequent water changes. So far no aggression between him and the eel. The eel is a bit of a biter, but she's also an obligate piscivore moray (Jeweled), and I've heard that's common. She's not big enough to actually do anything to the puffer, so he doesn't seem to notice. This tank has been up since late August/Early September, and was carefully cycled before I got any fish. I only have access to tapwater up here (no RO, and I do water changes often enough that filtered water would be too expensive), which is unfortunate, but it's a local water tower, not a large municipal water supply, and every test I've run is negative for the nastier chemicals in the water. I use formulated reef salt too, for my salinity, and to keep the trace minerals up to snuff. This algae isn't really a problem, so far, so I've been able to keep up with just a scrubber, like you said. I was just thinking long-term prevention, like the inevitable transfer to the 100gal will result in a really nasty bloom or something. On the other hand, the Hydras are a menace. I've toothbrushed them to pulp, but, true to the cnidarian family, they just regenerate from the sticky foot pads. Honestly, the worst thing they seem to do is look ugly and keep snails from scavenging the rocks where they live.
 

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Well, don't use the rock you have now in the new tank until the rock is cleaned.
Cycle new tank with new rock and don't use anything from the old until it is completely cleaned.
That should eliminate the hydroid problem.
 

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Oh a month is okay. *relieved* I thought you were going to say two years or something.

With using tap water algae is going to be pretty much inevitable. When you switch to the bigger tank I'd suggest starting with fresh rock instead of transferring the rock you're using now - and of course filling wit RODI. :)

I've never had hydroids bother anything. Mine have always disappeared as the tank matured. With two messy eaters like that theres' probably a lot for them to eat, with more cleaning they may starve out. But with the exception of fry, seahorses and maybe some coral they shouldn't have a strong enough sting to bother anything. I'd just keep up with the cleaning and, like I mentioned above, not use the rock from that tank after the move.

EDIT: Jerry beat me to it :thumbup:
 

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Porcupines eat inverts, any kind of invert even large crabs so there are no inverts except maybe anemones that would be safe from him.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks guys! Yeah, I only have them in a tank this small at all because I bought them young, about 5-6 months ago , I pretty much always planned on a massive upgrade at the end of the year, I may try to upgrade past 100gal. With only these two, a 100gal long should be fine, but if I got any cleaners or display fish, I'll have to resize. Thanks for the advice!
 
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