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Is this the alge bloom expected at end of cycle


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#1
viulian

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Hello guys,

My aquarium just passed its 3 weeks marks since it is cycling. By the 10th day the diatoms dissapeared (they started on 3rd or 4th day, with a peak at about 1 week, and then visibily loosing strength).

However, green algae started to grow slowly. I am expecting it since I read many articles here about the cycle and so on - but now it is everywhere; what I can't do is tell the difference between a normal / expected algae bloom and what I currently see in my aquarium. I have 4 other FW aquariums and this amount of algae would would be almost impossible to have (since I do take care of them).
Is this the normal cycling algae bloom or is it much worse ?

Few pics below:

Overview: it's everywhere, glass, side classes, sand, rock..

http://hex.ro/photog...es/IMG_1234.JPG

Closeup of the front glass:

http://hex.ro/photog...es/IMG_1233.JPG

Closeup of the rock closest to light:

http://hex.ro/photog...es/IMG_1229.JPG

I have changed the water a week ago (so after two weeks); although I started with tap water, I got the RO unit installed meanwhile and the WC was 50% with treated RO. I have also added some trace elements and bacteria (although I have no corals and no clean up crew, but maybe a reflex from the other FW aquariums where I add some food to continue the cycle).
What I noticed is that the algae really started to grow now, much stronger than before. I would have expected a decrease since the amount of nutrients dropped with the 50% water change with RO water, but apparently not.

Does this look like a normal algae bloom that is expected for cycling ? Shall I wait till it will die, or should I get some snails - I was planing for at least a month of cycling, but ... My alarm bells (from FW tank) are ringing like crazy and I'm confused if this is normal or not in reefs.

Thank you,

#2
wenhamjj

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GHA normal... yes, how much is normal, depends on each tank. You do have alot more than I had when I started my tank but my guess would be you are seeing what you are seeing because of using tap and not ro/di water. JUst remove as much as you can by hand and keep up with consistant water changes (10 -25% weekly is what most people are doing, I do 25%) and with a good CUC you will be fine. 1 or 2 mexican turbos and a emerald crab would have a feast on that salad you have there.

#3
FlCandy

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Start using RODI or Distilled water in your WC. It will help with the algae. What are your params? If their all in the okay range you can get your CUC and start beating it back. It is a lot of GHA for not having any livestock.

I would hand scrub the rocks outside of the tank and rinse them will with new mixed SW. this will help to get it under control.

#4
Atela

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Holy guacamole! If you have no live animals on those rocks, you might try the peroxide dip after you brush the rocks and pick off as much as you can see. Scrape the glass totally clean. I would even go as far as using a fine mesh net to catch any floaters in the water. As for water change, I'd go big. Wait maybe 3 weeks to a month to make sure you have gotten rid of all of the GHA before attaching any corals to the rocks. Once you have corals growing on the rocks, it becomes a challenge to rid the GHA with peroxide dip. I permanently changed the color of my pulsating Xenia by using peroxide on the rock that it was on.
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#5
Twpeek

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im not an expert but yeah tap water is loaded with nitrates, and you said youv done one water change? you need to do them weekly 10-20 percent. but yeah if you keep that up and pull the rocks out and put them in a bucket of salt water and scrub as much off as you can and clean everything in the tank by puling the GHA off and taking them out youll do better. i bought a couple rocks with algae once and did this process and added two turbo snails and a emerald crab and they licked the rocks clean in a week. but yeah cool tank and great scape :)elegance_tank.jpg

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#6
igotreefermadness

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It could be your rock came from a high phosphate environment. I've had a single rock do this in the past and it passed within a couple months while it never touched the surrounding rocks. RODI, big waterchanges, short light cycle, and some purigen or granular ferric oxide should help the situation, but it will also take a lot of patience.
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#7
viulian

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(10 -25% weekly is what most people are doing, I do 25%) and with a good CUC you will be fine. 1 or 2 mexican turbos and a emerald crab would have a feast on that salad you have there.


Thanks, will go with the list to the LFS and ask what they have :)

Start using RODI or Distilled water in your WC. It will help with the algae. What are your params? If their all in the okay range you can get your CUC and start beating it back. It is a lot of GHA for not having any livestock.


My params done this morning:
1. No3 / SiO2 /Po4 -> they appear 0 (but this could also be the algae that consumes everything available).
2. kH -> 4
3. Ca measured with two tests - one tells me 340 ppm the other tells me 440ppm so ... probably around there.
4. Mg -> I could not get the Mg+Ca test to register or the sum is huge - I kept putting lots of drops, water remained white (apparently should be red and turning to something else) but it remained white. I quit.
5. Ph -> 8.

Holy guacamole! If you have no live animals on those rocks, you might try the peroxide dip after you brush the rocks and pick off as much as you can see. Scrape the glass totally clean.


No animals what so ever. Peroxide I already have from FW tanks where from time to time I might get some hairs. I prefer it since is quick and dirty :D and not having to wait until they die out after I adjust my fertilizing routine. What I'm scared of is if they are growing big time, if I kill them, the unconsumed algae nutrients still remain so alge could appear again anytime. On FW I act when I see few strands and then adjust fertilization, but here ... yeah, I could wack them but they could get back since apparently the environment is still good for them :D

It could be your rock came from a high phosphate environment.


This could be true in fact, they kept all the rocks into a huge 'bath tub' (something with grills and so on) and under very low light. But months of waiting grrrr ....

About the water changes, I already switched to RO (don't know if it has DI or not, is the Dennerle Osmoser 130 kit - and they don't mention about DI unit). I did 1 WC after 2 weeks since I read here that doing sooner could delay the end of cycle, so I left it until NH4 reached 0. I will do them weekly, like I do for FW (where I change more, 50% to avoid ferts buildup).

I will get some snails and crabs this week ... and would use the peroxide before just for little fun to compensate the current frustration.

#8
viulian

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A small update: algae is starting to die out ... yey :)

I noticed that on the front glass at least, there are many whitish things and on close inspection it seems to be the roots (spots) where algae grew and now they become whitish / transparent.

Few pics:

http://hex.ro/photog...es/IMG_1236.JPG

http://hex.ro/photog...es/IMG_1238.JPG

So I will wait a bit more until they start to die en masse. I have not yet used the peroxide.

PS: I remember that just before the algae started going wild, I increased the lights from 6h/day to 8h/day as part of the recomandation of the manual the aquarium came with. I know there is a debate about it, but since I don't yet have a 'feel' for reefs - I went with the manual and with the ideea of better have the algae war sooner than later - if there is such a thing :)

#9
brandon429

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All you need to do is dump 4 cap fulls of peroxide from a new, unopened bottle into the tank. Wait 4 days, repeat and it will be dead in a week

Do a 100% change in one week using the right water
From now on don't change any less than 50% of the water when you change it, keep temps and sg the same

If the first treatment starts to kill it don't do second dose one is usually enough on fresh bottle

one very old pico

 


#10
FlCandy

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Those white dots look like pods. Their good.

Just keep up with the manual removal and WC with RODI water and you should be fine. I had an issue as well, first 4 pages of my thread I think have all my GHA issues. I need to make a thread index though.....

#11
solefald

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That looks like Bryopsis.

#12
viulian

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Although I was reticent to kill the algae, hoping it will die all by itself after it runs out of nutrients, I figure it out eventually that a mass death of algae will only fuel a new generation regrowth.

Don't know if I'm right on this one though, I was reading about Chaeto, the 'nutrient export' and that you have to trim it regularly otherwise, when it dies, it releases all the used up nutrients back into the water. So I figured that any mass 'death' (I was noticing a lot of existing algae turning whitish / transparent) but also new growth in different places will do the same as Chaeto.

So today I have trimmed it and also added a small dose of peroxide (5ml / 30L of water) which would be 5ml / 8g of water.

The before and after scrubbing pics:

http://hex.ro/photog...es/IMG_8141.JPG http://hex.ro/photog...es/IMG_8177.JPG

#13
Ibnzmonkey

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Whoa thats alot of alge. I come from a FW cichlid background myself and something like that would set off all sorts of alarms. So to confirm, an alge bloom during a nanos cycle is a good sign to add the CUC if the parameters are correct?

#14
viulian

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Well, I kept reading about it and so on .. it is expected to have some algae, but apparently not as I had :D I made two mistakes - started up with tap water AND with 6 hours lights period.
Apparently people reduce the light to barely there ... while cycling - so that you have time to have the sump / filters running for enough time to absorb nutrients out of the water. Once your values are in check you could increase the light period while improving the water quality even more.

But I'm not an expert, I did the exact opposite :D

#15
viulian

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Decided to go with an external filter filled with some filter media (2L of volume for media).

a) 1L of Eheim Substrat Pro
B) 0.5L activated carbon
c) 0.25L JBL PhosEx
d) 0.25L Zeolite for reefs

Before:

http://hex.ro/photog...es/IMG_8199.JPG

After:

http://hex.ro/photog.../IMG_8220_s.jpg

Much less algae on glass / rocks, some patches here and there.
There's still some red thick hair algae here and there - and also saw a bubble of a bubble algae which I cracked open without knowing about the spore thing. Now I'll wait and see.

No fishes / corals yet, and the Peroxide destroyed my copepods. I just ordered Purigen / Phytostart so there will be more filtration in the long run.

#16
C.I._Reefer

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Looks like bryopsis to me, can anyone confirm? If thats the case just jack up your mag for about a month, and you will probably never have to worry about it again.

#17
Captain Hook

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All you need to do is dump 4 cap fulls of peroxide from a new, unopened bottle into the tank. Wait 4 days, repeat and it will be dead in a week


I had a small 10g grow out and it crashed from dosing straight into the tank. When you do this, you are killing alot more than just the GHA and it realeases a nutrient spike. So from my experience, I wouldnt add it straight to the tank

Do you have a TDS meter to measure the tds coming from your RO machine? Theres a good chance that its not taking out enough particles if there isnt a DI hooked up. Anything above 0tds can have potentially harmful particles that can cause problems. If its a brand new machine perhaps you can return it and buy a RODI for the same price (170$ 4 stage @ Buckeyefieldsupply.com). I know some people use tap water and plain RO water, however from my experience if you want to eliminate nuisance algae and improve your chances of keeping it at bay, I would go with a 0tds water source, either RODI or distilled.

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#18
viulian

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Nope, no TDS metter (just a refractometer which I calibrated using RO water since the shop doesn't have solution with standard salinity). I will get one.

I know for sure that it doesn't have a DI unit though - it is sold in Europe - it is this kit: http://www.dennerle....p...=94&lang=en