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ALGAE!
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Barby Girl
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Joined: 05 Apr 2006
Location: Ohio

PostPosted: 2006.08.02(Wed)22:03    Post subject: ALGAE! Reply with quote

I knew to expect an algae bloom, but did not know it would happen so quickly. Almost over night my sand has developed brown patchs as well as a lot of my LR, it's a coppery brown color and it looks like it has "hair strands" climbing over the rock. I THINK it's hair algae, but really don't know. I know some algae should be removed, and I plan to definitly get it off the glass as there are a few small patches there, but what about the rest of it? Is this the natural algae bloom that will go away by itself upon tank maturity or should I worry and trying to remove it by hand? I also have other stuff that is a very dark color that looks like thin blades of grass. I also have very small patches of what I think is coralline that came on the rock. Any good online sources with pictures you guys would reccommend? I tried searching, but couldn't come up with any sites with real tank pictures about the types of algae. I found a lot of descriptions and drawing pictures, but that isn't helping me much.
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Pete Harcoff
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Joined: 18 Jun 2005
Location: Canada

PostPosted: 2006.08.02(Wed)22:11    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's going to get worse before it gets better.

I had a massive amount of algae grow in my tank that lasted several months. Only until about the fourth month did it start to subside. Now, in the fifth month, it's under reasonable control.

This page has a bunch of algae types. It's also got a lot of hitchhiker photos for identifying those unknown critters.
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sirreal63
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Joined: 21 Feb 2004
Location: Meadowlakes, TX

PostPosted: 2006.08.02(Wed)22:57    Post subject: Reply with quote

Welcome to new tank syndrome...it is normal and the perfect time to add a cleanup crew if you haven't done so. The brown is most likely diatoms and will subside on it's own. The rest is best removed by hand and what you cannot get by hand enlist snails for. Here is a pic of my first 29 and the job an Astrea snail pair did for it, the clean spot is after a snail grazing and you can clearly see the algae not eaten.



The coraline is desirable and the rest will subside with time and good skimming. Mature tanks have algae as well but hopefully it will be kept in balance. It is virtually impossible to have an algae free tank, nutrients exist and you cannot remove them all. Don't be upset by it, it is normal and expected. Smile
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rickyfins
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Joined: 04 Dec 2005
Location: Altoona PA

PostPosted: 2006.08.03(Thu)0:35    Post subject: Algaes Reply with quote

If it is brown/reddish carpetlike and if it ends up with air bubbles in it: It isnt algae at all. It is probably cyanobacteria or dinophagelates common with new tank syndrome. Wait it out. Cyano for short usually does not go away easily and should be vaccumed out of the sand or substrate. Dinophagelates are going to go away in a few weeks though so don't and I repeat don't panic! Water changes with RODI saltwater should eliminate CYANO over time. I recommend only using RODI water for making saltwater and using it as top off as well. You can get a good one that does 100gal per day from Filterdirect on EBAY just tell them Rickyfins sent ya and they will help you out! In fact filter direct sells their filters (100gpd model) for less than 1/4 that they are sold in LFS and are far superior in quality and the GPD rating.

I hope this helps and if not just ask more quesitons because I love to help solve the riddle.

Thanks,

Rick
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Barby Girl
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Joined: 05 Apr 2006
Location: Ohio

PostPosted: 2006.08.03(Thu)9:55    Post subject: Reply with quote

Rick, that is actually who I got my RO/DI from Smile
Thanks for the info. Is it safe to add snails to a tank that is only two weeks or so old? All my LR was cured, so it came seeded with bacteria. I am picking up a few small pieces of live rock tonight to round out my display and I could get snails while I'm there if I get the go ahead, what about hermits, do they eat that stuff too and would they be safe in such a jeuvenile tank?
Thanks again all for the info.
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SoS
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Joined: 16 Feb 2003
Location: PA, USA

PostPosted: 2006.08.03(Thu)13:10    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you haven't already get yourself a Phosphate and silicate test kits. That is what is feeding that algae. If you get anything above zero for either get some phosphate remover and check whatever water you are putting in the tank. Some salt mixes are pretty crappy they have phosphates in them.

Algae blooms are a normal part of the saltwater cycle process, but you don't want it to get out of hand.

How many hours a day are you running your lights?

Green = bad
red = bad
brown = bad
purple = good
large macro algae = good
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Barby Girl
Regulars


Joined: 05 Apr 2006
Location: Ohio

PostPosted: 2006.08.03(Thu)14:08    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have not been able to find a good phosphate or silicate test kit yet, have one more store to check and then if no, will order online. I am using Instant Ocean salt which claims zero phosphate, and I'm using RO/DI water. The lights are on full force 10 hours a day and the "blue" light (can't remember which one that is!) is on an extra two hours on top of that.
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rickyfins
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Joined: 04 Dec 2005
Location: Altoona PA

PostPosted: 2006.08.12(Sat)19:54    Post subject: Reply with quote

Your lighting scheme is good but you can deal with less light. Try doing a total of 10 hours with 1 hour in the am for actinics as well as 1 hour in the pm for the actinics. Salt is not where your phosphates come from, it is actually food and chemical additives. I don't do additives at all and I personally don't add any life for at least 6 months for maturing, but a lot of other hobbyists tend to cut that down. If you really want to do it right, do not add any life for 6 months other than your live rock. This will also give the rock a chance to show you what it is capable of without things in there to eat it before it matures properly. Certain algaes, sponges, turnicates, microcorals, flora and fauna that are barely seen by the naked eye will flourish without predators. So you will end up with a more beautiful tank in time.

On to phosphates and silicates. I do not test for either one on a regular basis. In fact, I haven't tested phosphate in 6 months and I have never tested for silicates. If you do regular water changes with good RODI water, then those readings will come out good if you are good at maintenance. They become irrelevant to your reefkeeping if you take action before there is a need.

thanks,

Rick
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Fishboy86
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Joined: 14 Feb 2006

PostPosted: 2006.08.15(Tue)0:48    Post subject: Reply with quote

The same thing happend to mine after I upgraded the lighting from 80 watts to a coralife 260 watts but I still have my doubts should the actinics be on the back or front ? Confused Lucky me its been a month now and its going away The Coraline is coming back in the liverock Laughing
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