Oh, and we found one of our local Best Buy stores has a home energy section so we have a local supplier of Insteon stuff now! W00t!
Anyhow, my saltwater tank...
So, wanted something tiny that I wouldn't want to put too much stuff into, but also wanted something big enough that if I can get the water chemistry reliable I'd be able to put something in it worth looking at. After spending the past few weeks when not trying to keep the new freshwater tank from crashing, I have been reading all the various saltwater forums I can find, and decided on a pico-reef setup. Originally I was going to just get one of the mini-tank kits, but after going to the LFS (Neptune Aquatics in Milpitas), I decided to just buy a decent scratch-build setup. Given everything I've read online, the reef-tank people all seem to think you'll always want to go bigger, and that's quite likely, though my house is small, but I bought using the idea that eventually I could use this tank as either natural filter or quarantine for the much larger tank if I decided to. Anyhow, here's the list of stuff I got:-
- 5 gallon low-iron glass tank
- Eheim ecco 35 (canister filter rated for around 35 gallon tank)
- In-Line water heater (rather than sticking one in the tank, this goes in the canister filter return so the water returning to the tank is the right temperature)
- Real Seawater with Container (trying to make it simpler to start the tank, by using actual seawater with all it's stuff rather than trying to make it and add the extra chemicals and such)
- Sand (large grain) and Rock
I'll probably post some pictures of the setup a little later in the week, but basically at this point, everything is in the water, now it's time to wait for the initial tank cycle. Using some of the frozen food the freshwater fish aren't interested in all that much to get the ammonia levels up.
And yes, entirely fishless/coralless/invertabrateless at this time I've never done saltwater before, and the water chemistry is the most important part of the tank, so if I can keep this going right, and get used to what tests need to be done, then maybe I can consider going up to a much larger tank and keep something living in it. And if I can get this going, I'll probably start chatting with some of the nano/pico reef people and see what recommendations people have for a minimal group of hardy critters for the tank. Hopefully I can get something that I won't even need to feed too much, as I've read up on people making entirely food self-sufficient tanks with saltwater... Though there is no way I think I'm able to do that myself, I think it, and it's counterpart the fully self contained nitrogen cycle tank is where I want to aim for. Though that just cuts down on what I need to deal with on the tank each week, it doesn't mean I get to ignore it