Frag Tank Challenges

ashwinv96

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Hey All,
I have been considering getting a frag tank for some time now. What are your experiences with maintaining one and what challenges are inevitable?
 

ichthyoid

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It depends on many things, such as are you going to keep fish in it as well, and if so how many?
How are you going to manage the chemistry? More automation is convenient, but also provides more points of potential failure.
I plan to tie the frag tank into a common sump with a display tank in my new build. This is more for convenience than anything else (one water change & one controller).
If you are only going to keep corals in the frag tank, that will simplify the upkeep. Just because fish & food introduce nutrients that must ultimately be dealt with.
 

bhodges82

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I have one that is plumbed in to my main system, it keeps it simple for me to maintain one water column rather than two.

Sent from my SM-G975U using Tapatalk
 

hzheng33

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it's like owning multiple reef tanks. do you want everything running through the same filtration system or separate?

when i ran my frag tank (again when i "ran"), i had everything separate to avoid a complete crash if my main tank goes south or to avoid pest accidentally introduced in either of the tanks. but that also means extra skimmer/heater/wavepumps/etc. and maintenance.
 

popsbjd

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Temple, GA
I think the biggest thing on a separate frag system is maintaining stability. I just have a frag rack in the "display" part of the frag tank. No rock. No sand. I have tried to cram as much rock into the 10 gallon sump. I don't have any fish in the system only crabs and snails. Oversized skimmer. pH and Alkalinity are almost always lower than I want.
 

enderg60

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Mine are currently tied to my main system. Only issues Ive had is getting enough light coverage with one halide, getting good flow without blowing things off the frag plugs and every 6 months everything overgrows and kills its neighbor because I forget to sell stuff.

New system will have much larger frag tanks and will have areas of high and low flow and light. And hopefully the extra room will help with the overgrowing issue as well.

Just find some space and dont let it get covered in algae and your good.
 

dball711

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@ashwinv96

I like the idea of a separate system just in case. I have a main display and a frag grow out tank that are individually maintained systems. Stability is not that hard, I think I have it down to a science. Please reach out via PM and set up some time to come by and take a look at what I have in place, it might give you some ideas! I'm in the East Cobb area.
Dave
 

anit77

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Duluth
I have mine plumbed through a common sump too. Down the road I plan to do the same but also add another run separately.

Brett @bcavalli had told me that every separate tank will be it's own ecosystem. Even though they're all plumbed together their parameters will all be slightly different. He couldn't have been more right about that. What I've found is that the new tank with go through it's own mini cycle even though they're all plumbed together. I do have fish in the frag tank and that probably added to it. The fish I've added to the frag are utility fish, they all have a purpose. A Stary Blenny & Tomini Tang for algae and Menelaus & Yellow Coris wrasses for pest control. I had a Yellow Tang, but it didn't do it's job so I traded it in for the Tomini. The only sand in the frag is a tupperware container with fine grain sand for the wrasses.

I would recommend having multiple frag racks so you can swap them out as algae grows on them. I learned that trick from Simon at Nemo. After about 18 months I'm now at the point that the racks are staying clean for longer periods of time. They used to be covered in GHA at about the two week mark and I'd swap them out. If I let it slide longer than two weeks the GHA would start covering the frags. I think the Tomini and snails are finally working to keep things cleaner and I'm at about a month now since the last swap out.
 
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