Possible Switch From Reef To Discus/Help Please - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-05-2009, 05:33 PM Thread Starter
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Possible Switch From Reef To Discus/Help Please

Hello, I am considering switching my 90 gal reef to discus or some other fw fish, with plants.
The current set up is a 90 gal AGA reef tank with built in overflow, skimmer{I know I would not need this}, 1 return and 2 closed loop pumps{so 5 inputs} 20 gal sump, 29 gal refugium{thinking this could be turned into a QT tank}~all plumbed together.
Lighting is 2 X 250 10K metal halides, and 4 X 110 URI VHO's.

If I did this, I want a tank with sand bottom, and large plants like swords.
Something like this, on a smaller scale..
https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/ta...ahuna-56k.html

I have an RO/DI unit, 44 gal brute trashcan on wheels for wc's, lots of powerheads, etc.

What would I need to convert or change to turn this into a freshwater tank?
Would I need to have CO2?
Would it be possible to turn the sump into an appropriate filter?
How do you keep the PH low, stable?
Lighting~would this all have to be changed?
Could I keep my present sandbed if it was rinsed?
Tell me what I need to know about discus, if this is the way I go.{I am researching them, so just basics is ok}
That's it for now, thanks.
p.s. could I keep pantanal now?
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post #2 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-05-2009, 05:48 PM Thread Starter
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This guy is in Fl I would drive down and hand pick my fish.

http://www.wattleydiscus.com/index.php

The tank as it is{was}~




As you can see, it is in my kitchen/dining area. It has gone seriously downhill, plagued by majanos. It would be a costly thing to get it like it should be. Plus, every time I put my hand in the tank now{been doing this since 03'} I get welts and a reaction to the corals, stinging cells. So I am done...just have to convince the mr., that this idea would be nice, and look just as good.
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post #3 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-05-2009, 11:16 PM
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Keep the lighting and start an algae farm.

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"C'mon, they're just plants, man, no big deal -- try some"
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post #4 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-05-2009, 11:18 PM
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Wanna ship me the big colonies?
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post #5 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-05-2009, 11:35 PM Thread Starter
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Come on guys, that's all you have to offer. I need a good defense here..
Epic, I would be glad to, but you don't want to deal with what I have dealt with for 6 years. As long as I have been keeping corals, and really as good as I am with maintaining their color..if I may say so myself, by now I should have a gorgeous tank. But I don't. It looks bad, and I am tired of it. The majanos won the battle.
So what kind of lighting would work inside a canopy, with fans, on a 90? Could I downgrade the MH's to 150 wt bulbs? I use mogul Ushios.
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post #6 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-05-2009, 11:45 PM
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What ballast are the VHOs being driven with? Can you run just one bulb?

Even if you downgraded to 150W, you'd need two for sufficient coverage, giving you 300 watts over 90g. A bit overkill.

Any updated pics of the reef? I wouldn't mind trying to fight off the majanos. I welcome challenges, hahaha.
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post #7 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-05-2009, 11:56 PM Thread Starter
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Hmm..the ballasts for the MH's are Blueline E-ballasts, for the VHO's a 660 icecap. How about running white VHO's? Can you grow plants? Don't forget the MH's are about 12" above the water in the canopy. I know someone has to be using MH's over a planted tank, what do they use? The only other option is 70's, and they don't do squat. No new pics, I would be too embarassed. Most of the large colonies in the top pic are gone, the only really big colony is the blue milli, and there is a nice sunset, and a danae. I have a beautiful purple marshall islands clam..covered with majanos grr.., but it could sit in a bucket of fw for 30 min to get them off. I've done it before. Careful what you wish for, majanos are no joke like aiptasia. They laugh at you when you try to kill them, and make 30 more overnight.
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post #8 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-06-2009, 12:01 AM
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Carole,

You could get 10k VHO but what about selling stuff off and switch the end caps to T5HO endcaps and go that route. I'm sure you could run 2 660 Ballasts and 2 t%HO bulbs on each.

Sell off your extra parts for other toys.

If your felling really duanting cut out hte overflow box and setup an Canister filter. That is what I would do. Using lock line fittings. Helgymatt here has an excellent setup on his 75.

I would use ADA Amazonia I though over a sand substrate. IMO though.

Craig

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Quote:
Originally Posted by cdwill View Post
"C'mon, they're just plants, man, no big deal -- try some"
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post #9 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-06-2009, 12:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by waterfaller1 View Post
Hello, I am considering switching my 90 gal reef to discus or some other fw fish, with plants.
The current set up is a 90 gal AGA reef tank with built in overflow, skimmer{I know I would not need this}, 1 return and 2 closed loop pumps{so 5 inputs} 20 gal sump, 29 gal refugium{thinking this could be turned into a QT tank}~all plumbed together.
Lighting is 2 X 250 10K metal halides, and 4 X 110 URI VHO's.

If I did this, I want a tank with sand bottom, and large plants like swords.
Something like this, on a smaller scale..
https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/ta...ahuna-56k.html

I have an RO/DI unit, 44 gal brute trashcan on wheels for wc's, lots of powerheads, etc.

What would I need to convert or change to turn this into a freshwater tank?
Would I need to have CO2?
Would it be possible to turn the sump into an appropriate filter?
How do you keep the PH low, stable?
Lighting~would this all have to be changed?
Could I keep my present sandbed if it was rinsed?
Tell me what I need to know about discus, if this is the way I go.{I am researching them, so just basics is ok}
That's it for now, thanks.
p.s. could I keep pantanal now?
I have a discus tank - not yet planted, but I have had a separate planted tank as well.

Discus need specific water parameters, and if your tap can't provide them then you may either "age" your water every night for your daily 50% WCs OR you can use your RO system. So you should hold on to that until you find out about what water you will be using for your daily WCs.

Question - you want a planted discus tank or a barebottom tank? BB tank is MUCh MUCH better for growing out discus to their full potential. In planted tanks, young discus can grow to be ill and stunted, losing their beauty and health.

So assuming you will be wise () and do a BB tank, what is the wpg on your light? You may want to go lower than what you have by buying new bulbs. - OR - you can setup a separate BB tank in which you can grow out discus for ~ 8 months, during which time you can convert your current reef tank into a banging planted tank and then TRANSFER your discus into it! That is the ULTIMATE!

You will need to sterilize any used equipment (including your python!) and tank with bleach or potassium permanganate before it touches any water intended for discus!

Those are some fundamentals. You can learn alot about discus at Simply Discus (forum.simplydiscus.com). Everyone there is great!!!!!!!

Best

~ Yasmin
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post #10 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-06-2009, 12:15 AM
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That's a ridiculous amount of light for plants. You could probably just sell it and buy a more suitable fixture.

With lots of light, you need CO2. A sump will cause a lot of it to gas off, because of the turbulence.
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post #11 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-06-2009, 12:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by waterfaller1 View Post
Hmm..the ballasts for the MH's are Blueline E-ballasts, for the VHO's a 660 icecap. How about running white VHO's? Can you grow plants? Don't forget the MH's are about 12" above the water in the canopy. I know someone has to be using MH's over a planted tank, what do they use? The only other option is 70's, and they don't do squat. No new pics, I would be too embarassed. Most of the large colonies in the top pic are gone, the only really big colony is the blue milli, and there is a nice sunset, and a danae. I have a beautiful purple marshall islands clam..covered with majanos grr.., but it could sit in a bucket of fw for 30 min to get them off. I've done it before. Careful what you wish for, majanos are no joke like aiptasia. They laugh at you when you try to kill them, and make 30 more overnight.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Craigthor View Post
Carole,

You could get 10k VHO but what about selling stuff off and switch the end caps to T5HO endcaps and go that route. I'm sure you could run 2 660 Ballasts and 2 t%HO bulbs on each.

Sell off your extra parts for other toys.

If your felling really duanting cut out hte overflow box and setup an Canister filter. That is what I would do. Using lock line fittings. Helgymatt here has an excellent setup on his 75.

I would use ADA Amazonia I though over a sand substrate. IMO though.

Craig

Craig

That's the route I'd go too. Get the 660's to push T5s.

Send me a picture of your milli and the sunset!
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post #12 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-06-2009, 01:07 AM Thread Starter
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What wattage T-5's would you run on a 90? What color temp? I have no intention of giving up my RO/DI unit. I use RO for my fw tanks..always. I have never owned a python in my life. Not even the scaly kind.. The tank would definitely get a good run with bleach. I have joined the discus site, waiting to be approved by admin.. I'll work on it epic..
What is the reason you feel BB is needed? I see pics of them in all kinds of tanks, and read at the site you mentioned that they adapt to lots of different parameters, they just don't breed. That's ok by me, because I am not a breeder anyway. Plus, I have the advantage of getting fish that have been bred by Jack Wattley for decades, right here in Florida. That means they are already used to the water here. In fact, I spoke with someone there today, a guy named Gabriel. I might call him back and ask what parameters they keep them at there.
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post #13 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-06-2009, 01:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by waterfaller1 View Post
What wattage T-5's would you run on a 90? What color temp? I have no intention of giving up my RO/DI unit. I use RO for my fw tanks..always. I have never owned a python in my life. Not even the scaly kind.. The tank would definitely get a good run with bleach. I have joined the discus site, waiting to be approved by admin.. I'll work on it epic..
What is the reason you feel BB is needed? I see pics of them in all kinds of tanks, and read at the site you mentioned that they adapt to lots of different parameters, they just don't breed. That's ok by me, because I am not a breeder anyway. Plus, I have the advantage of getting fish that have been bred by Jack Wattley for decades, right here in Florida. That means they are already used to the water here. In fact, I spoke with someone there today, a guy named Gabriel. I might call him back and ask what parameters they keep them at there.
I know you may have resistance to the idea of BB. Most people do at first, and later come to regret not doing it the right way from the beginning.

Basically - the bottom line is this... if you are getting non-adult discus you need a BB to grow them to full potential. Young discus need to eat more frequently, and frequent feedings are hard to clean up after in a planted tank. The mess that's left behind can lead to the growth of pathogenic bacteria and parasites which can directly infect fish or can cause them stress, both of which will cause the fish to become sick, stunted or even die.

If you are going to buy adult discus, then it is much safer to put them into a planted tank. They don't need feedings as frequently and they are more hardy

Discus are expensive, especially good ones. Make sure you don't waste your money by not taking proper care of them.

I have not heard of the breeder you mentioned, which is not to say at all that he's not "good." But I remember going to a LFS here and being very impressed initially, only later to find out that much of what he told me was not the best, and I am very glad I did not follow his advice!

My point is, when it comes to discus, make sure you ask around and that you KNOW WHAT TO LOOK FOR! In the simply discus forum, in the beginnners thread there is a sticky that describes a good vs a "bad" discus. I suggest you read that before you buy anything...

PS - I highly urge you to start posting on Simply. This is a planted tank forum, and most of your advice will be aimed towards planted tanks rather than discus. Discus are a somewhat special breed of fish. They need special care, and you would be much benefitted from learning as much as you can before you invest in them. They are undoubtedly beautiful, but do you wonder why not many people keep them? Just try and learn what you can from simply - you won't regret it!
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post #14 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-06-2009, 01:40 AM
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Is that tank a 48 inch long, approximately 21 inch deep tank? If so, you could light it very well for plant with 2 - 54 watt T5HO lights spaced a ways apart so you get light from two directions on the plants and avoid too much shading of them. With that much light CO2 will be essential to get the rapid plant growth that keeps algae away.

Hoppy
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post #15 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-06-2009, 02:58 AM
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48 long and 24 tall.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by cdwill View Post
"C'mon, they're just plants, man, no big deal -- try some"
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