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Results 1 to 8 of 8
  1. #1

    Default Algae in the frag tank


    0 Not allowed!
    I was wondering if anyone knew the cause for algae in our 20 long frag tank. Its tied into our main system, which doesn't have any of this type of algae and is over 18 months old. The algae is mostly diatoms and brown hair algae. Flow is 2 koralia evo 750's and a mag 5 return pump. The bulb isn't very old, I think they were new last November. Is there anything that can cause it and not effect the display and what can I do about it because it looks horrible and we have to clean it regularly.


    Also, we have some sps that get brown algae growing on them, even in direct flow both in the display and frag tank. It doesn't seem to harm the coral, but again, it looks horrible, lol

    Thank you for any input

    29 gallon-planted community

    20 long frag tank
    75 gal-planted goldfish

    75 gallon mixed reef with 20 gallon sump






  2. Default


    0 Not allowed!
    You're water most likely has phosphates and/or silicates. What kind of bulb are you using in the frag tank? If it's different that the display tank (which I believe you're using LEDs) then that light may encourage algae growth more than the display tank. It could also be from difference in flow or lack of CUC. Even if the conditions are only slightly different between the display and sump, the algae will choose to establish wherever the conditions are slightly more favorable.

  3. #3

    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Phosphates are 0 as were running GFO and the display and the frag tank has a 250 watt phoenix 14000K metal halide identical to 2 250 watt 14000K bulbs on the display. Flow is almost 2000gph in the frag tank and has no dead spots. I'm unsure about silicates but the display is algae free and we use an aragonite sand (vs silica) in the display and the frag tank is bare bottomed. The display and the frag tank also both share the same sump. The frag tank has 6 or more astrea snails and 2 mexican turbo snails for the CUC.


    We talked to a friend this evening who also owns a saltwater store and tank cleaning service and he thinks it may be our saltmix. We've always used instant ocean. He uses MEI lab grade salt. He will sometimes use instant ocean for a few weeks if he runs out of MEI and is in a bind, and every time he does both his tanks and his clients tanks get excess algae growth, until he starts using the MEI again.

    He suggested we try switching to a fully synthetic salt, like MEI and see if that helps or eliminates the algae, which is what we are going to try since we will be needing salt soon anyways. Its worth a shot and since the tanks been making us extra money it would be good to invest in a better salt. We have a great CUC in the display including a foxface rabbit fish that eats any algae, so we vary well could have an algae problem in the display if it wasn't for the great cuc.

    29 gallon-planted community

    20 long frag tank
    75 gal-planted goldfish

    75 gallon mixed reef with 20 gallon sump






  4. Default


    0 Not allowed!
    What would make the MEI salt so special though? You're running rust so if there's any phosphates in the mix then it would get taken care of. Maybe the algae is able to utilize the phosphate quicker than the rust can? Sometimes algae is just inevitable lol.

  5. Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Ding ding ding Funkman! That very well could be the case. Alot of salt mixes have phos in them. Some brands more than others. I've never taken the time to test different brands though. It could be the MEI is very low in phos while IO is higher.

    And phosphate test kits out there aren't all that accurate. Hanna phosphate meter is the most accurate I've found. We had someone here test a bunch of phosphate kits against a lab result and the Hanna was the winner. In any case, when you have excessive algae, the algae sucks up the nutrients to feed itself so quickly that you will get false readings on phos and nitrate. Manually remove algae, do extra water changes, be sure to change your media often (not sure what rust is....I use GFO in a Precision Marine reactor)

    You could also get yourself a sea hare for the frag tank. (and still do the water changes as well) They'll eat up the algae faster than it can grow. But once the algae is gone you will want to rehome the sea hare or it will starve.

    It takes a little extra work and a lot of patience to get rid of nuisance algae.
    Last edited by gem; 05-14-2011 at 02:04 PM.

  6. Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Quote Originally Posted by gem
    (not sure what rust is....I use GFO in a Precision Marine reactor)
    Rust is the same thing as [granular] ferric oxide aka GFO. I could be a bit of a nerd sometimes so I like to mix things up a bit lol. Interesting tidbit by the way: In developing countries that can't afford lab-grade chemicals but have high concentrations of arsenic in their water, they filter their water through buckets of rusty nails. That's right, rusty nails (which are covered in ferric oxide) act in the same way that it does in our reactors. I actually did an experiment on this and proved that this method was even more effective than using chemicals designed for arsenic removal (such as titanium dioxide).

    And I also use the Hannah colorimeter myself. I was previously using API liquid test but it's difficult to tell the colors apart for me and it's in increments of 0.25ppm which is way too high. It's nice having the device tell you the phosphate level in the digital display the way it does.

  7. Default


    0 Not allowed!
    The rusty nails story is pretty interesting. Never heard that before. But makes sense.
    Yes....the Hanna meter is great. Most test kits don't test to low enough levels to detect phosphate. So you may think you have 0 Phos when in fact the test kit just isn't sensitive enough to pick it up.

  8. #8

    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Quote Originally Posted by funkman262
    What would make the MEI salt so special though? You're running rust so if there's any phosphates in the mix then it would get taken care of. Maybe the algae is able to utilize the phosphate quicker than the rust can? Sometimes algae is just inevitable lol.
    The theory with the MEI is that salts like instant ocean, are partially mined and contain silicas, phosphate, and also anti caking addetives which can all contribute to excessive algae. MEI is a fully synthetic salt and doesnt contain sillicas, phosphate or anti cakeing addetives. The gfo takes care of the phosphate but not the rest. I need to buy salt soon anyways and MEI is only a little more then IO so i thinks its worth a shot

    The biggest puzzler is why is it only growing in the frag tank and not the display. They both share the same water and filtration.

    29 gallon-planted community

    20 long frag tank
    75 gal-planted goldfish

    75 gallon mixed reef with 20 gallon sump






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