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ZephNYC

THE OFFICIAL ASK ALBERT THIEL THREAD

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CJBuckeyes

My first post in over six years (took a long break from reefing)... but didn't want to miss an opportunity to get some great advice.

 

I have a 22 gallon ADA tank (about 30 gals with the sump) and I haven't been able to get the corals to consistently thrive. The tank has been up since February, added corals in March. After a few months, I noticed that my blue clove polyps weren't opening (this would probably make most people happy), so I replaced the carbon I was running with a 1/2 unit of chemi-pure elite on the hunch that phosphates were the problem. Within a few days everything was back to normal. A month later, my frogspawn and devils hand weren't opening quite as fully so I replace the CPE during my weekly water change. After that, the devils hand and my sinularia both closed, and remained closed until I did my next water change a week later. After two weeks, I decided to run an experiment and changed the CPE elite again during the water change, and everything closed up. My fuge is going crazy with hair algae, so much so that at some point my cheato stopped growing and started to melt with slime and I slowly removed it after trying to save it with increased flow. I purchased the only (crappy) phosphate test kit they had at the LFS, which only registers above 0.25 (shows zero for me).

 

My temp is steady at 79, my salinity steady at 1.025 using an ato. Nitrites and nitrates at zero, total ammonia is at 0.2 mg/L, and ph is fairly steady 8.2 (off-cycle light in fuge). I do weekly 5 gallon water changes from an RODI, mixing for 24 hours. I'm running a reef octopus skimmer as well.

 

I ordered a hanna phosphate meter that's coming later this week, along with a reactor and GFO. Does this sound like the right culprit, or should I be checking something else? Am I imagining it, or does my tank have a sensitivity to CPE, even though it's only a 1/2 unit and I rinse it before use?

 

Tried to include all the relevant details, hope it wasn't too much. Thanks!

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albertthiel

For those who are running skimmers and want to know more about venturi valves here is a good link :

 

http://www.google.com/search?client=safari...-8&oe=UTF-8

 

Also as I was looking at www.athiel.com I came across an older article on skimmers by Ian McDonald that you may wish to read :

 

http://netclub.athiel.com/ian/SKIMMERS.HTM

 

It is not the most recent but it does give a good analysis of the types of skimmers around ...

 

Albert

Edited by albertthiel

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Wizzy
Wizzy when I answered I used one of Zeph's messages so the answer is there ... if you have more questions let me know ..

 

Albert

 

Thanks Albert.

 

I will probably be upgrading to a better equipped aquarium in the near future and hopefully that will solve the problem.

 

-Wizzy

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albertthiel
Thanks Albert.

 

I will probably be upgrading to a better equipped aquarium in the near future and hopefully that will solve the problem.

 

-Wizzy

 

You are welcome ... the key though is not to overload your tank and really keep a close look at your water quality parameters and follow generally accepted practices for tank maintenance and not overfeed :)

 

Skimming and mech and chemical filtration added on to what you have with the inclusion of what i mentioned above should IMHO get you back on track but it will not happen overnight as you probably already know.

 

A few good water changes making sure the parameters are as they should be and a thorough clean out of your current tank is also a recommendation I would like to make

 

Feel free to ask more questions any time you have any

 

Albert

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patback

Have you starte a build yet on a nano tank? I think I read somthing about you trying to pick out the right aio tank?

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albertthiel

It seems that a lot of hobbyists strongly believe that adding garlic or its extract to food will cure their fish of saltwater ich.

 

Personally and although their are now lots of foods and products that state that they contain garlic on the market I have not been convinced that the claims made have been documented under lab conditions

 

Here is an interesting article that I think all should read

 

http://reefkeeping.com/issues/2005-10/sp/index.php

 

Albert

 

 

Have you starte a build yet on a nano tank? I think I read somthing about you trying to pick out the right aio tank?

 

Leaning strongly towards rimless but have not decided on the brand yet + 20 gallon sump and skimmer and some reactors but I have not finalized my plans yet but should in the next few days and will post what I decided upon

 

Thanks for asking and if you have any recs let me know pls

 

Albert

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jedimasterben
It seems that a lot of hobbyists strongly believe that adding garlic or its extract to food will cure their fish of saltwater ich.

 

Personally and although their are now lots of foods and products that state that they contain garlic on the market I have not been convinced that the claims made have been documented under lab conditions

 

Albert

This is what I'm finding. Sure, garlic will give them some nutrients and stuff that they may not get a bunch of, but a slightly-healthier fish with ich is still just a fish with ich, and it will most likely be the cause of death.

 

And this is the go-to source for ich information:

Marine Ich - Myths and Facts

Edited by jedimasterben

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albertthiel
This is what I'm finding. Sure, garlic will give them some nutrients and stuff that they may not get a bunch of, but a slightly-healthier fish with ich is still just a fish with ich, and it will most likely be the cause of death.

 

And this is the go-to source for ich information:

Marine Ich - Myths and Facts

 

Very well said Jedimaster ... and tanks for posting the myth link ... very interesting info there that I was not aware of even after all those years in the hobby ... again it just confirms that no one actually knows it all and that it is only through forums like this that hobbyists of all expertise learn more and more

 

Albert

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albertthiel

Pictures of some interesting Leather Corals :

 

Yellow Fiji Leather

leatheryellowfiji2.png

 

Yellow Leather

leatheryellow.jpg

 

Alcyonidae sp. Leather

leatheralcyonidae.png

 

Cabbage Leather

leathercabbage.png

 

Devil's Hand Leather

leatherdevilshand.png

 

Very Large Leather - Notice the size of the fish relative to the Leather and the fact that the Clown is inside the Leather (and not even alone )

leatherhuge.png

 

Umbrella Leather

leatherumbrella.png

 

Fiji Yellow

leatheryellowfiji.png

 

Usually Leather corals are easy to maintain and can grow to very large sizes

 

Albert

Edited by albertthiel

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ZephNYC
Very well said Jedimaster ... and tanks for posting the myth link ... very interesting info there that I was not aware of even after all those years in the hobby ... again it just confirms that no one actually knows it all and that it is only through forums like this that hobbyists of all expertise learn more and more

 

Albert

 

 

Perfect timing ! I came to post a question and I see we are talking about Ich.

Albert, we have spoke endlessly about fresh water dips for clams, but what do you think about fresh water dipping a marine fish?

This is why I ask. As you know Achilles tangs are veryyyyy veryyyyv hard to keep. Im the kind of guy that likes to maintain fish people say cant be kept. I know tons of people haves achilles tang but i went through so many. Anyway I had an Achilles covered with Ich. BAD. So I gave it a freshwater dip like I would a clam. 30 minutes. AND LITERALLY WATCHED ALL THe SPOTS FALL OFF. It was awesome.

so than I quarantined him, and he went nuts. stopped eating, swam back and forth listlessly all day long. I think I eventually sacrificed him. Any thoughts? Oh..please dont feel you have to research this topic...Im just chewing the fat with a lifelong friend.

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albertthiel
Perfect timing ! I came to post a question and I see we are talking about Ich.

Albert, we have spoke endlessly about fresh water dips for clams, but what do you think about fresh water dipping a marine fish?

This is why I ask. As you know Achilles tangs are veryyyyy veryyyyv hard to keep. Im the kind of guy that likes to maintain fish people say cant be kept. I know tons of people haves achilles tang but i went through so many. Anyway I had an Achilles covered with Ich. BAD. So I gave it a freshwater dip like I would a clam. 30 minutes. AND LITERALLY WATCHED ALL THe SPOTS FALL OFF. It was awesome.

so than I quarantined him, and he went nuts. stopped eating, swam back and forth listlessly all day long. I think I eventually sacrificed him. Any thoughts? Oh..please dont feel you have to research this topic...Im just chewing the fat with a lifelong friend.

Zeph the quick answer is NO ... don't do it even if it is not a Tang. Now I know that some will say oh I idid it and had no problems. Granted but that probably meant that the fish was not very much infected and therefore still pretty healthy and able to deal with the freshwater bath. But .. IME it does not really work and stresses the fish so much that it may just get ich/crypto back once you put it in the tank again

 

And the long answer ... NO do not do it ....

 

oops did I reverse the two :)

 

Zeph ... I think it is far safer to use one of the many other methods that can be used and that are far safer

 

OAN ... at one time my reasoning was that since the parasites sit on the slime and eventually knaw or push their way through it, if I could get the fish to produce more slime they would be able to push the parasites off their skin (along the lines of what copper actually does as it irritates the fish and makes them produce more slime), so I tried believe it or not drops of that real hot pepper extract sauce and did so in a small tank.

 

Believe it or not it worked and much faster than copper or other methods, such as altering the pH, but I never pursued it or wrote about it .... I just know it works ...

 

Caution I am not advocating you do so ... because the strength and the dosage are a major factor .... so this is just an anecdote I wanted to add to this thread.

 

Albert

 

 

Perfect timing ! I came to post a question and I see we are talking about Ich.

Albert, we have spoke endlessly about fresh water dips for clams, but what do you think about fresh water dipping a marine fish?

This is why I ask. As you know Achilles tangs are veryyyyy veryyyyv hard to keep. Im the kind of guy that likes to maintain fish people say cant be kept. I know tons of people haves achilles tang but i went through so many. Anyway I had an Achilles covered with Ich. BAD. So I gave it a freshwater dip like I would a clam. 30 minutes. AND LITERALLY WATCHED ALL THe SPOTS FALL OFF. It was awesome.

so than I quarantined him, and he went nuts. stopped eating, swam back and forth listlessly all day long. I think I eventually sacrificed him. Any thoughts? Oh..please dont feel you have to research this topic...Im just chewing the fat with a lifelong friend.

 

In freshwater dips if I remember correctly they fall off so quickly because they "pop" and are history and can therefore not hold on to the fish slime and just fall off

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albertthiel

Picture of a Superman Mushroom ....

 

mushroomsuperman.png

 

A real nice specimen which I saw for sale on line for $39

 

Albert

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Spirofucci

Albert, in Kayleen's thread you mentioned that elegance corals split. How does this happen since they have such a hard exterior skeleton?

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albertthiel
Albert, in Kayleen's thread you mentioned that elegance corals split. How does this happen since they have such a hard exterior skeleton?

 

 

Here are some links

 

http://www.reefs.org/forums/topic1917.html

 

http://www.3reef.com/forums/asap/euphillia-help-52926.html

 

http://www.ultimatereef.net/forums/showthread.php?t=216556

 

If you read the text in the links you will get an idea of how it happens when the coral gets additional "mouth" and pulls away from the skeleton more and more

 

Albert

 

P.S. and if you google it you will find even more links that show you what happens

 

Albert

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jedimasterben
Perfect timing ! I came to post a question and I see we are talking about Ich.

Albert, we have spoke endlessly about fresh water dips for clams, but what do you think about fresh water dipping a marine fish?

This is why I ask. As you know Achilles tangs are veryyyyy veryyyyv hard to keep. Im the kind of guy that likes to maintain fish people say cant be kept. I know tons of people haves achilles tang but i went through so many. Anyway I had an Achilles covered with Ich. BAD. So I gave it a freshwater dip like I would a clam. 30 minutes. AND LITERALLY WATCHED ALL THe SPOTS FALL OFF. It was awesome.

so than I quarantined him, and he went nuts. stopped eating, swam back and forth listlessly all day long. I think I eventually sacrificed him. Any thoughts? Oh..please dont feel you have to research this topic...Im just chewing the fat with a lifelong friend.

I'm surprised a 30 minute dip on the fish didn't do it in. Freshwater dips cannot kill ich that is embedded in the fish's skin and protected via its slime coat (even on tangs that have very little slime coat). It would kill the fish several days before it would kill the ich spores in the slime coat.

 

 

HOWEVER - if a fish is infected with ich, I would recommend, before quarantining and treating with either copper or hypsalinity (copper is best, IMHO, and Cupramine at that), to give a 3-5 minute freshwater dip IF THE FISH IS HEALTHY ENOUGH TO HANDLE IT!! The slime coat is very, very thin in the gills - thin enough to the point where the freshwater dip will kill the ich in the gills (a good bit of it,anyway) and help the fish breathe easier. If it is still eating and swimming around normally, it's probably ok to do the short dip, but I would never go 30 minutes, that seems like it would surely kill a hefty percentage of fish in itself.

 

OAN ... at one time my reasoning was that since the parasites sit on the slime and eventually knaw or push their way through it, if I could get the fish to produce more slime they would be able to push the parasites off their skin (along the lines of what copper actually does as it irritates the fish and makes them produce more slime), so I tried believe it or not drops of that real hot pepper extract sauce and did so in a small tank.

coolest thing I've read all day :)

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Spirofucci
Here are some links

 

http://www.reefs.org/forums/topic1917.html

 

http://www.3reef.com/forums/asap/euphillia-help-52926.html

 

http://www.ultimatereef.net/forums/showthread.php?t=216556

 

If you read the text in the links you will get an idea of how it happens when the coral gets additional "mouth" and pulls away from the skeleton more and more

 

Albert

 

P.S. and if you google it you will find even more links that show you what happens

 

Albert

 

Thanks Albert! Very cool.

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ZephNYC
Thanks Albert! Very cool.

 

 

Pepper extract...genius. You could market that today.

 

In one of Julian Sprungs book he has a picture of an elegance coral with a daughter colony growing in the flesh. He shows how they cut it out. Gonioporas also drop daughter colonies if you are lucky.

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albertthiel
I'm surprised a 30 minute dip on the fish didn't do it in. Freshwater dips cannot kill ich that is embedded in the fish's skin and protected via its slime coat (even on tangs that have very little slime coat). It would kill the fish several days before it would kill the ich spores in the slime coat.

 

 

HOWEVER - if a fish is infected with ich, I would recommend, before quarantining and treating with either copper or hypsalinity (copper is best, IMHO, and Cupramine at that), to give a 3-5 minute freshwater dip IF THE FISH IS HEALTHY ENOUGH TO HANDLE IT!! The slime coat is very, very thin in the gills - thin enough to the point where the freshwater dip will kill the ich in the gills (a good bit of it,anyway) and help the fish breathe easier. If it is still eating and swimming around normally, it's probably ok to do the short dip, but I would never go 30 minutes, that seems like it would surely kill a hefty percentage of fish in itself.

 

 

coolest thing I've read all day :)

 

Yes I figured that those who read it would find it cool/odd but it did work but as I said do not try this yourself unless you are willing to sacrifice fish to find the right dosage, which I would hope no one is willing to do.

 

The Cupramine/copper treatment that would IMO be the least stressful to the fish is to do it in a small container but using salt water not fresh water, although with healthy fish that are not too infected the freshwater dip will work of course as Jedi points out FWIW

 

Albert

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albertthiel
Pepper extract...genius. You could market that today.

 

In one of Julian Sprungs book he has a picture of an elegance coral with a daughter colony growing in the flesh. He shows how they cut it out. Gonioporas also drop daughter colonies if you are lucky.

 

Zeph ... it's actually funny you say that ... because at the time I was trying it and sent some samples to friends of mine in CT, as we were still located there at that time and not yet in Las Cruces NM, several of them did suggest the same thing, but I decided against it because I was afraid that hobbyists would think " a little more is better" and kill off the fish for sure, and I did not want that to happen so I did not market it ...

 

On the Euphyllia .. the splitting is well known I thought, and yes it is documented in several books I have (Sprung but also Fossa and Nilsen and also in one of Wilkens' books.

 

Additional mouths form first and then with some luck after a while portions start to split off as I am sure you know and may have seen yourself ... with the Gonio's I agree that one has to be more than very lucky as that has always been a real touchy coral IMHO

 

Albert

 

Thanks Albert! Very cool.

 

You are most welcome and if you want more info just let me know

 

Albert

 

 

I love the idea of an Ask Albert Thread. Thanks for starting it Zeph.

 

Thanks Kat, I appreciate it

 

Albert

Edited by albertthiel

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ZephNYC

Zeph ... it's actually funny you say that ... because at the time I was trying it and sent some samples to friends of mine in CT, as we were still located there at that time and not yet in Las Cruces NM, several of them did suggest the same thing, but I decided against it because I was afraid that hobbyists would think " a little more is better" and kill off the fish for sure, and I did not want that to happen so I did not market it ...

 

Albert

 

 

 

Albert, you are a gentleman. If it was me ?? CHA CHING!!!!! Seriously though, I can name a few marketers that dont give a you know what about the fish, its all about the money. Ever visit Mark Weiss's house?? omg. You were never one of them Albert. You always cared about the fish.

Edited by ZephNYC

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albertthiel

I think I pointed out that when it comes to fish Clown Triggers are my favorites :

 

On the thiel aqua tech website there is a long thread on OOP the clown I had when I first got to GA ... OOP was so funny that I decided to write his life story and his sometimes really funny way of acting

 

http://www.athiel.com/lib5/oop.htm#1

 

oop.png

 

 

Albert, you are a gentleman. If it was me ?? CHA CHING!!!!! Seriously though, I can name a few marketers that dont give a you know what about the fish, its all about the money. Ever visit Mark Weiss's house?? omg. You were never one of them Albert. You always cared about the fish.

 

Zeph ... thanks ... you are very kind to say so ... I really appreciate that. Those kind of comments are worth a lot more than money.

 

I thank you

 

Albert

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Finding Paulo

Hey Albert... no one's replying to this so i thought i ask you!

 

so ive been reading and researching about calcium reactors and it seems to me that even though they are expensive it is better than using kalkwasser and dosing 1/2 part everyday.im about to purchase this korallin calcium reactor with the c02 set up.. (keep in mind i want a dominant sps tank.

 

http://www.marinedepot.com/Korallin_C1502_...-FICRRA-vi.html

 

my question ive been reading about dual chamber calcium reactors .. is that necessary or better than the system im about to get? what do i gain and lose?? please any information on this matter will help lots!

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albertthiel
Hey Albert... no one's replying to this so i thought i ask you!

 

so ive been reading and researching about calcium reactors and it seems to me that even though they are expensive it is better than using kalkwasser and dosing 1/2 part everyday.im about to purchase this korallin calcium reactor with the c02 set up.. (keep in mind i want a dominant sps tank.

 

http://www.marinedepot.com/Korallin_C1502_...-FICRRA-vi.html

 

my question ive been reading about dual chamber calcium reactors .. is that necessary or better than the system im about to get? what do i gain and lose?? please any information on this matter will help lots!

 

The reason I believe that some manufacturers came out with dual chamber ones is to find a solution to the pH issue that occurred with some of the single ones, where the pH of the outflowing water was a little on the low side, and by flowing that same water through a second reactor, without any additional carbon dioxide the effluent water had a higher pH that was more in line with what the acceptable levels are. Also any residual CO2 still in the water would be neutralized in the second chamber. These units are not inexpensive but of course it all depends on what you have in your tank and what you are protecting and its value in $$'s.

 

You can run it with a single one as long as you make sure that the water coming out of it does not have a low pH.

 

If you want to monitor the effluent and the tank pH less (alternatively put a pH controller - expensive - to regulate the CO2 flow) then a double unit will need less maintenance and monitoring.

 

Also you will a far larger supply one the media since you now have 2 reactors rather than 1.

 

KHdual.png

 

An example of what one looks like

 

Hope this helps.

 

Albert

 

 

 

Have you starte a build yet on a nano tank? I think I read somthing about you trying to pick out the right aio tank?

 

Any recs on what tank to select ... ? I do not want to go with an all-in-one but with a tank that has an overflow box in it with perhaps one more compartment but that does not take up a lot of space. I will be using a 20 gallon sump / refugium as well and a skimmer and perhaps some reactors.

 

Size of the tank : 15 to 25 gallons max (low to high range)

 

thanks

 

Albert

 

Hey Albert... no one's replying to this so i thought i ask you!

 

so ive been reading and researching about calcium reactors and it seems to me that even though they are expensive it is better than using kalkwasser and dosing 1/2 part everyday.im about to purchase this korallin calcium reactor with the c02 set up.. (keep in mind i want a dominant sps tank.

 

http://www.marinedepot.com/Korallin_C1502_...-FICRRA-vi.html

 

my question ive been reading about dual chamber calcium reactors .. is that necessary or better than the system im about to get? what do i gain and lose?? please any information on this matter will help lots!

 

BTW the link embedded in your message returns an error message :)

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neuwave
Pepper extract...genius. You could market that today.

 

In one of Julian Sprungs book he has a picture of an elegance coral with a daughter colony growing in the flesh. He shows how they cut it out. Gonioporas also drop daughter colonies if you are lucky.

 

As far as the hot sauce method to help rid a tank of ich has been out for a while. The company used Capsaicin as one main ingredient. Albert maybe you can remember the name it came out years ago. I gotta find one of my old old old aquarium magazines to find an ad.

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