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Hello Everyone,

We're setting up shop as a wholesaler of marine fish in South Florida and although I'm pretty familiar at this point in how to set up a reef tank filtration system, we are now talking about a 6,000 gallon fish-only system!
I've got skimmers and carbon but my ammonia is through the roof...I would put a refugium and live rock but the water will more than likely have antibiotics and other chemicals so my thinking is that would kill anything in the live rock anyways...am I correct in this assumption? If so, how can I bring down these high ammonia levels?

Thank you all, your help is much appreciated!

-Kevin
 

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Aquatic Philosopher
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15,434 Posts
Antibiotics will play havoc on the bacteria in the system. If you plan on using copper, it will kill a lot of other invertebrate life. You really do not need a fuge. Fuges are for nitrate conversion, not ammonia. I would actually recommend some fairly large wet/dry capacity set-up. A LFS I knew had his 1000g display being pumped into a large container filled with bioballs. Think 55g Drum size. Water would be pumped into the top, splash around, and then work its way down. What you need for nitrogen/ammonia processing is a large amount of surface area for bacteria to colonize that also get a lot of oxygen as well. Having abundant surface area will also help keep more bacteria in the system and spread about so antibiotics will hopefully not be as big of an issue for them. However, heavy antibiotics use will have an effect so monitor the use. Wet/dry and bioballs are great for fish-only systems, just not great for coral/invert reefs. I recommend getting a wet/dry system. Home-made ones using Brute trash cans, some plumbing/bulkheads and being filled with bioballs are good cheap alternatives to a pre-fab unit.
 
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