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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi

I have a 20 gallon tank with Rust kind of alge that keeps growing on Rocks and tank. I would wipe it out and it comes right back.

I been using RO/DI water since day 1 and my nitrates are always detected below 10.

my Alk is around 8
Cal is 480

I dont' have much corals except a few frags of frogspawn and hammer and gsp, they seem to be growing very well. Anyone have any suggestions?

thanks
 

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Have you got any macro algae in there? I had a problem with it for a few months, myself, but macro algae and slightly reduced lighting periods seem to have worked for me.
 

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Do you have a picture of it?

Is it kind of fuzzy and seems come and go as the lights are on and off? If so, then it's probably cyano bacteria. Manually siphon out and increase your flow to get rid of. Also reduce feedings and/or bioload and start a refugium with macro-algae. If that doesn't work then consider more aggressive nitrate and phosphate control techniques such as granular ferric oxide or bacteria pellets.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
hey

I been doing the lights 6 hours a day and basically feeding just a few small pellets to my wrasse and goby, clown a day for a month or so. but not really working. Weekly 5 gallon water change.

I'll see if I can take a picture when light is on. I dont' think is fuzzy, I can basically wipe it off with my hands more like brown slime. It does seem to disappear on the rock when lights are off. As soon as lights come on for 2 hours or so it appears.

I have a Aquaclear 110, I have tried putting Cheato in it, but dont' seem to stay alive or somehow end up in my tank. I have just some chemipure inside it now and 3 pieces of rock and a aqualite skimmer.

I'll try adding some more flow in the tank.

thanks
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
thanks, do you think I need to increase flow in my tank. I am currently using a kor 2 and a Aquaclear 110.

The aquaclear 110 I have chemipure and phosguard(seahem). Anything else I perfer not to put sand or macro in there.
 

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You should have enough flow for a tank of your size with the two K2s, but it wouldn't hurt to add a bit more. The Aquaclear doesn't count because it doesn't provide any actual "flow" around the aquarium. It just spills water in a single spot. I would actually remove the Aquaclear and all of its media. The Phosguard especially is concerning because it is aluminum-based and has been shown to be detrimental to corals in some circumstances. Seachem doesn't even market Phosguard as appropriate for reef tanks the last time I checked. Granular ferric oxide (GFO) is the standard phosphate removal media for reef tanks. You can run it in the Aquaclear in a bag, but it is optimized to run in a media reactor.

You didn't mention if you had a skimmer. Skimming out dissolved organic compounds (DOCs) should be high on your priority list.

Secondly, your calcium is quite high at 480. What test kit are you using? At levels that high you could see precipitation in the water column. Is your sand clumping? Also, what is your magnesium level?

You can also take a turkey baster and blow the diatoms off of the live rock and then siphon out during water changes. This may prevent the diatoms from re-gaining a foothold.

Add a bit of macro algae is another thing you could try.

Be patient and try a number of strategies.
 

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couldn't he just load up the AC filter with live rock? mightaswell use it if he has it :D
He could. It's probably more effective if he turned it into a mini-refugium like I used to have by adding LR rubble, some macro and put a small light over it.
 

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In a 20 gallon tank, that 110 must kick out a lot of flow, no? Or does the direction of the flow matter?
Direction matters a whole lot. The AC is just spilling water downwards across a wide area. Put your hand underneath and you won't feel a lot of water displacement. Move your hand any distance away from directly under the outflow and you won't feel anything. A good propellor-driven powerhead, on the other hand, can actually push water all the way to the other side of a tank and even bounce it back the other way.

If you've ever stood in the ocean, the flow you feel comes in very strong back and forth motions - straight one way, then straight back the other. This is known as laminar, or unidirectional, flow that you should try to replicate in your tank.
 

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Sorry to derail your topic, jayzz, but I figure this is educational for both of us. ;)

I've got a pretty tiny tank - do you think the "wave" motion is something I should try to emulate, even in such a small body of water?

At the moment, the flow is provided by an AC20 and a Hagen Elite Mini. A lot of movement in there, but it is certainly more "cyclone" than "wave". ;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
otter feel free to join in this thread.

Fkshiu, I am using api test, I don't have the mag. About the calcium I never really dose anything. I am not 100 percnet sure but I think Oceanic salt starts with 500 at 1.025.
I figure if I keep up with weekly water change I didnt' need to dose.

480 is right after a 5 gallon water change at 1.025 with a refrac. I have a barebottom so i dont' know much about sand. The skimmer I am using is a Aqualite skimmer at first i was using a tunze9002 but for some reason after each water change it will take up to 2 to 3 days before skimming again. Talk to Tunze it says doesnot belong in a aquaclear110. The aqualite I get instant skimming not as dark but more wet. I am happy with it compare to the tunze.

You are right about the flow, it seem the diatom is appearing right below the Aquaclear 110 and the far back corner opposite to my K2. And those parts donot have any coralling alge. It seems maybe that is the reason. I will add a k2 or k3 to the tank.
I'll post a pic after I get the another koralia to see if i am placing it in the right spot.

GFO question, how long do they need to be replace? do they change color overtime?

Any comments
 

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otter feel free to join in this thread.

Fkshiu, I am using api test, I don't have the mag. About the calcium I never really dose anything. I am not 100 percnet sure but I think Oceanic salt starts with 500 at 1.025.
I figure if I keep up with weekly water change I didnt' need to dose.

480 is right after a 5 gallon water change at 1.025 with a refrac. I have a barebottom so i dont' know much about sand. The skimmer I am using is a Aqualite skimmer at first i was using a tunze9002 but for some reason after each water change it will take up to 2 to 3 days before skimming again. Talk to Tunze it says doesnot belong in a aquaclear110. The aqualite I get instant skimming not as dark but more wet. I am happy with it compare to the tunze.

You are right about the flow, it seem the diatom is appearing right below the Aquaclear 110 and the far back corner opposite to my K2. And those parts donot have any coralling alge. It seems maybe that is the reason. I will add a k2 or k3 to the tank.
I'll post a pic after I get the another koralia to see if i am placing it in the right spot.

GFO question, how long do they need to be replace? do they change color overtime?

Any comments
480 is quite a ways off of desired calcium levels in a reef tank. You have to understand that calcium, alkalinity and magnesium have a very close causal relationship with each other a bit like how pH, CO2 and KH are interrelated in a FW context. There are ideal balanced levels of calcium, alkalinity and magnesium that should exist in a reef tank. Have a read of this:
http://www.advancedaquarist.com/issues/nov2002/chem.htm

Before you go and start adding things to change your calcium levels, I would double check with another test kit. Salifert, Elos and Seachem are commonly used by SW keepers.

I've never heard of an Aqualite skimmer so I can't comment on it. Where did you get it from and do you have a link for it?

GFO doesn't change colour. The only way to know it's exhausted is by closely monitoring phosphate levels.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Yes I did the same to the filter. thanks

Fkshiu, From what I just did a test on tonight. It seem OCeanic salt has a starting rate of 560 and Alk 8 with brand new mix salt. This is what I'm getting from my test. Cal is higher and lower Alk, I guess is just different brand.
 

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I've done some checking around and it seems that certain batches of Oceanic salt have issues with extremely high calcium levels. If your calcium levels are indeed in excess of 500 ppm, even after you double check with a different brand of test kit, it is not good for the long term health of your corals. I would suggest that you consider switching to another brand of salt.
 
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