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Lights on for Cycling?

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scfurse77 View Drop Down
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    Posted: January 12 2016 at 4:07pm
Looks like on other forums and posts. This question is all over the board. Just wanted to get some thoughts from you guys.

Should i have the lights on during the cycling period? If so how much? What intensity etc...???

thanks,


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Marcoss Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 12 2016 at 4:18pm
I cycled my tank when I first set it up, and I kept the lights on very low, just because I wanted to see what the tank looked like with rock. I would keep the intensity super low to avoid algae growth.

Marcos



Edited by Marcoss - January 12 2016 at 4:25pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Fatman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 12 2016 at 5:19pm
Originally posted by Marcoss Marcoss wrote:

I cycled my tank when I first set it up, and I kept the lights on very low, just because I wanted to see what the tank looked like with rock. I would keep the intensity super low to avoid algae growth.

Marcos




That's probably a very smart idea. I ran lights on mine to get it started.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote DMower Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 12 2016 at 6:41pm
I start my tanks with live stuff to start with and don't ever have a cycle to speak of. Crazy talk from me here I know. Cycling a tank for weeks is only necessary if you start with all dry rock and sand. It I did it that way, I would also have very little light on the tank.

I recently tore my 150 gallon tank down to the sand and rebuilt it. No big deal. Same live stuff out same live stuff put back in.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote bstuver Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 12 2016 at 7:20pm
I agree with Dmower I always start tanks with live rock and then I don't have a cycle to wait through.
Jackie Stuver

"wait these aren't the happy Hawaiians oompa doompa godly heaven on your face zoas?   I dont want them then. lol!" Ksmart
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There are good reasons for every thing and every situation. 

If little or no LR, LS, LW or Macroalgae from a mature tank is used for startup, then it's useless to turn on the lights. 
Why? 
Because the resulting nitrogen cycle in such a tank, mostly devoid of life, actually kills any living organisms that would eat the algae growth. The reality of "Cycling" as traditionally used in starting up a tank means that the water is going to get really nasty before it gets better. It takes at least 6 weeks before any life can survive and start to show any growth. The sick water that happens during the cycling process is deadly for invertebrates (coral, snails, bugs, etc.) and most fish. Lights are left off or low so that algae, which would start growing during week 3 or week 4, does not swiftly bloom out of control while the water is still too nasty to support bugs and snails to eat it.

If, on the other hand, good mature live stuff is used in startup(the more the better) - the quicker the tank will be up and running like a true reef, which means it's necessary to set the lights for the full 12 hours/day. 
Why?
Because bugs living in the LR, LS, LW and Macroalgae from a mature tank continue eating algae without skipping a beat. In week one the tank may be ready for a few snails. (Snails are very desirable and useful reef inhabitants. Smile) More snails need to be added periodically to eat algae along with the opportunity to add lots of coral as the aquarium flourishes in the 2nd and 3rd weeks and so on. (Coral filter the water, whereas fish pollute the water.)

Are you starting to see the differences between the two methods? It's not too late to use the latter method and have your reef up and running almost immediately. I give away live stuff so that new hobbyists can skip the dreaded cycle. Call/text me at 808-345-1049.

Aloha,
Mark  Hug


Edited by Mark Peterson - January 12 2016 at 8:37pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote bur01014 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 13 2016 at 11:02am
Lights on full blown.  I always found it best when system is young to run everything as you normally would so as to see how it functions - temp swings, evaporation rate, etc. How your system functions is an important understanding to gain prior to putting living animals in your tank after the cycle is complete.  You may find your water gets too warm, the coloration of your lighting is not to your liking, or your auto top off reservoir is not big enough due to excess evaporation.  Learn the characteristics of your system now, why you wait. 

As for algae, blooms will come and go, the younger the tank/live rock, the worse the blooms, I would run the lights full blown to get through the ugly stages before you start placing corals.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Chevmaro Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 13 2016 at 1:19pm
Lights definitely off if using mostly dry rock.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote scfurse77 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 16 2016 at 12:58am
Originally posted by Mark Peterson Mark Peterson wrote:

There are good reasons for every thing and every situation. 

If little or no LR, LS, LW or Macroalgae from a mature tank is used for startup, then it's useless to turn on the lights. 
Why? 
Because the resulting nitrogen cycle in such a tank, mostly devoid of life, actually kills any living organisms that would eat the algae growth. The reality of "Cycling" as traditionally used in starting up a tank means that the water is going to get really nasty before it gets better. It takes at least 6 weeks before any life can survive and start to show any growth. The sick water that happens during the cycling process is deadly for invertebrates (coral, snails, bugs, etc.) and most fish. Lights are left off or low so that algae, which would start growing during week 3 or week 4, does not swiftly bloom out of control while the water is still too nasty to support bugs and snails to eat it.

If, on the other hand, good mature live stuff is used in startup(the more the better) - the quicker the tank will be up and running like a true reef, which means it's necessary to set the lights for the full 12 hours/day. 
Why?
Because bugs living in the LR, LS, LW and Macroalgae from a mature tank continue eating algae without skipping a beat. In week one the tank may be ready for a few snails. (Snails are very desirable and useful reef inhabitants. Smile) More snails need to be added periodically to eat algae along with the opportunity to add lots of coral as the aquarium flourishes in the 2nd and 3rd weeks and so on. (Coral filter the water, whereas fish pollute the water.)

Are you starting to see the differences between the two methods? It's not too late to use the latter method and have your reef up and running almost immediately. I give away live stuff so that new hobbyists can skip the dreaded cycle. Call/text me at 808-345-1049.

Aloha,
Mark  Hug

Thanks for the rock and sand Mark. My tank looks great and tests are on par as well. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mark Peterson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 16 2016 at 11:10am
You're welcome. That one rock had a massive thick growth of Caulerpa, another had a beautiful purple Sponge covering half-way around it and the third rock was Southern Utah Red Rock covered with Coralline Algae. I am happy to share and would love to see a current pic.

Aloha,
Mark  Hug
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote Mark Peterson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 16 2016 at 11:13am
Oh, here she is. Smile Thanks.

You added some Blundell Buttons and Xenia. Now it's time to add some more soft coral, like all sorts of Zoanthids. Also Leather coral such as Sinularia, Kenya Tree, etc. look good and grow well in a new tank.

Aloha,
Mark  Hug


Edited by Mark Peterson - January 16 2016 at 11:32am
Reefkeeping Tips, & quick, easy setup tricks:
www.utahreefs.com/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=9244
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