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Dirté Sanchez

The Fire Swamp's 50g SCA Starfire Cube- 🔥🐊. Upgrade Coming Soon

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Tamberav

Consider light too...mine are under pretty low par.

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Dirté Sanchez
Just now, Tamberav said:

Every tank is different...whatever makes your corals look happy is the numbers you chase. All of my 5 tanks run different.

 

There is no simple one right answer. There are simply too many variables we can't account for between tanks. 

 

One person's acros look like crap under high nutrients and the next guys looks amazing. It's likey something biological/bacteria related.

Meaning I need more or less bacteria? 

 

I really have been working at obsessing less on testing the last couple of weeks. I finally got the freshwater tank happy where it only needs once a week small water changes and testing. I’m testing the SW tanks on Monday and Friday with water changes those days too, though I was hoping to get that down to Friday’s only. I’m trying. You know how it is as a nurse- I. Must. Fuss. But I’m working at it. The twice a week part was also to try and regulate the nitrates and phos. 

 

Maybe this week Ill try to push it to just Friday and see if they look better with more nutrients.

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Dirté Sanchez
1 minute ago, Tamberav said:

Consider light too...mine are under pretty low par.

Ha mine are super low par. I’ve got one 24 inch Orbit LED, another 18inch of the same, and a tuna blue bulb on an arm over that tank because you can tell there’s hardly any penetration of light. Im

hoping to upgrade the lights in the next couple weeks because I have SOOOOO many cords and am using so much power running that Orbit system. I am looking to get ONE light to do what I’m trying to do with three.

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mcarroll
1 hour ago, Dirté Sanchez said:

Using API I get 0 phos Levels and using Salifert I get 0.5-1.0. I’d always tried to keep my phos up to around 0.125-0.25 using API, and I’m not completely used to Salifert yet.

Use a second vial to hold plain tank water and use that as your zero-reference.  This may help you get a better read on the test-vial when it's measuring a very low concentration.  I do that for nitrates too.

 

1 hour ago, Dirté Sanchez said:

Nitrates have always run higher for me, because of the NPS corals I feed daily. They usually run around 5-25 and the tank has been happy there.

I don't think there anything wrong with those numbers per se.

 

If I'm worried about anything it's that the system is trending toward phosphate limitation and your efforts with the phosguard etc are hastening the process.  

 

I'm not sure you're seeing any signs of limitation yet, but that's good....avoidance is always the easier route than fixing a problem after the fact.

 

You read my mind and answered before I posted... 😉 

16 minutes ago, Dirté Sanchez said:

My hammer corals aren’t happy and a Micronesian torch isn’t happy

So definitely lay off all the extra filtration for now...no bio-media, no adsorbing media, et al.  

 

See where the tank's PO4 and NO3 levels settle based on your feeding routine and the tank's actual consumption.

 

If only nitrates rise that's generally because the system has started to be phosphate limited...photosynthesis, basic cell repair, division, reproduction, et al, will all start to slow down, malfunction or stop.  Not good in any event!  If this happens (rising N; static/zero P) then you do want to dose some potassium phosphate fertilizer like Seachem Flourish Phosphate (or similar).  This will alleviate short-term stress to corals and stop or prevent bleaching.  Keep up the dosing just like you would for alkalinity and maintain ≥0.03 ppm....anywhere up to 0.20 ppm would be safe, but there's no need to overshoot. Just saying it's safe to dose, and hitting 0.05 ppm or 0.10 ppm so you can see it and confirm it on your test kit would be totally fine. 

 

If you have ever-rising nutrient levels both phosphate and nitrate, then that says you're overfeeding.  Or in the case of NPS you may have the wrong flow for it or be feeding wrong or feeding the wrong thing or even feeding at the wrong time.

 

I don't think a lot of people have figured out the key to NPS keeping.  Overfeeding ends up being a shotgun solution, but has known side-effects and doesn't totally work for the NPS in all cases.
 

Anyway...if you do end up with ever-rising nutrient levels, still don't panic.  It just means you need to change the feeding routine.  First to less food, so you stop growing the problem.  But ultimately you want to switch to something you can feed that they will ustilize more of –– making less waste in the water. Remember that NPS are mostly dependent on the carbon source in the food item,so the excrete a LOT of nitrogen and potentially a lot of phosphate as well.  So high-intensity processed foods are probably too much for everyday feedings.  Natural tank detritus, which has already been lowered in N and P, and which has a nice bacterial load, should be close to ideal....so that's what you're trying to emulate if you don't have enough detritus.   This can sorta be said as "stop feeding the corals and just feed the fish more". 😉 Higher quality live or frozen food will always be best in your scenario though.

 

IMO if I were NPS keeping it would be in a dark-refugium kind of scenario....hopefully connected to a tank full of fish and algae making tons of detritus....which is hopefully flowed aggressively like a reef, so that none of the detritus settles, it all (eventually) goes down the drain to auto-feed the NPS system.  Someday!!

 

8 minutes ago, Dirté Sanchez said:

Ha mine are super low par. I’ve got one 24 inch Orbit LED, another 18inch of the same, and a tuna blue bulb on an arm over that tank because you can tell there’s hardly any penetration of light. Im

hoping to upgrade the lights in the next couple weeks because I have SOOOOO many cords and am using so much power running that Orbit system. I am looking to get ONE light to do what I’m trying to do with three.

If those are plain Orbit's then yeah you'll have to do something better sooner or later.  

 

This may be feeding into your issue with the corals.  A light meter would give you some answers.

 

Try a lux meter app on your smartphone for free (post results you get...test in sunlight to see if it gives sensible results before using it on the tank...here are some example levels), but I'd highly recommend getting a handheld lux meter at a very minimum.  Handhelds seem to go for as little as $7 these days.  I think I paid $15 for the corded model I have. (LX-1010B)

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mcarroll

FYI, a dual-strip Current-USA Orbit Marine IC Pro would be a logical replacement for all the lamps you have up there now.  Get the longest strips that will fit of course.  Having a third strip or even a second pair wouldn't be too much overkill if you were going for a really bright tank for some reason...like clams on the bottom of the tank.

 

Also, not sure if you clicked though on the first article I linked....there's a small image in my posting, but it's a good one to see in original (I'll have to link the original!) due to all the changes the phosphate limitation causes on the polyp AND on the dino-symbionts.

 

From the original article:

Fig. 1. Effect of dissolved inorganic nutrient availability on polyp size, and on zooxanthellae density and ultrastructure. Panels on the left hand side show representative photographs of Euphyllia paradivisa polyps from each experimental treatment. Panels in the central column show light microscope images of tentacle endoderm cross sections (× 40 magnification). Panels on the right hand side show micrographs of individual zooxanthellae which represent a mean ultrastructure (n = 100) resulting from the respective treatments (× 6000 magnification). HN/HP = high nitrogen/high phosphorus, LN/LP = low nitrogen/low phosphorus, HN/LP = high nitrogen/low phosphorus, LN/HP = low nitrogen/high phosphorus. AB = accumulation body, ch = chloroplast, LB = lipid body, N = nucleus with condensed chromosomes, P = pyrenoid, S = starch granule, U = uric acid crystals.

Fig. 1. Effect of dissolved inorganic nutrient availability on polyp size, and on zooxanthellae density and ultrastructure. Panels on the left hand side show representative photographs of Euphyllia paradivisa polyps from each experimental treatment. Panels in the central column show light microscope images of tentacle endoderm cross sections (× 40 magnification). Panels on the right hand side show micrographs of individual zooxanthellae which represent a mean ultrastructure (n = 100) resulting from the respective treatments (× 6000 magnification). HN/HP = high nitrogen/high phosphorus, LN/LP = low nitrogen/low phosphorus, HN/LP = high nitrogen/low phosphorus, LN/HP = low nitrogen/high phosphorus. AB = accumulation body, ch = chloroplast, LB = lipid body, N = nucleus with condensed chromosomes, P = pyrenoid, S = starch granule, U = uric acid crystals.

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Dirté Sanchez

Yes it’s a plain Orbit, not the IC Pro. I’m heavily pondering changing to Kessil- there’s a good deal on amazon for two tuna blue A160WE, the gooseneck clamps and the controller with cable. I see they say one A160WE is good for up to 24 in, which is what I have, so I’m wondering if one will truly truly do or if two is better. One would make my budget much happier but I want to get the right lights this time. 

 

And all the Orbit eflux pumps- they’re making me despair at the moment because I can’t get them to actually flow forward rather than mostly flowing to the sides. Someday I’d like to ditch all the Orbit stuff and get just two (I have 3 currently) powerheads that will work well. Maybe an MP10 system. 

 

This is all super good information and I thank you sooo much for it!!!! I’ll definitely look into the phone par meter for now.

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mcarroll

24" of surface coverage.

 

You'll want at least a pair of A160's or a single A360 IMO.

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Dirté Sanchez
34 minutes ago, mcarroll said:

24" of surface coverage.

 

You'll want at least a pair of A160's or a single A360 IMO.

Or, I can get a new Red Sea ReefLED 90w for less than both those deals with the arm from BRS. The Kessil A360WE is also 90w... choices choices.

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jack1978
21 hours ago, Dirté Sanchez said:

Oh I know the price stings really bad. I use Amazon a lot trying to find deals, and I really thought about that AI Prime that someone was selling on the marketplace the other day, but I am pretty sure it would take two primes to get the job done. I want ONE light to do for the whole tank. If that's not a pipe dream. But I'd sure prefer a cleaner look. It's going to be a long time before I do the pump change. And if a light comes along on the marketplace between now and then, even better!

You can always get a cheap blackbox light.  Not sexy ...... but work great for cheap.  1 would definitely cover your tank.

I ran an Arctic T something or other over my old 40B before the Radion.  It worked great and had awesome color and programming.   Got it shipped to my door for almost nothing .... like $145 or close to that.  Under $200. 

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Dirté Sanchez
14 minutes ago, jack1978 said:

I’ve already gone the cheap and affordable route and have three pumps and three lights 😂. I think since I’ll have a bit of extra moola soon I am prolly gonna but the bullet for either a Kessil A360WE or a Red Sea ReefLED 90w. I see now BRS sells both with arms for same

price in the end. Or maybe I can find a used one or a super special deal on one or the other somewhere.

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jack1978
5 minutes ago, Dirté Sanchez said:

I’ve already gone the cheap and affordable route and have three pumps and three lights 😂. I think since I’ll have a bit of extra moola soon I am prolly gonna but the bullet for either a Kessil A360WE or a Red Sea ReefLED 90w. I see now BRS sells both with arms for same

price in the end. Or maybe I can find a used one or a super special deal on one or the other somewhere.

I was trying to save you a divorce!

....it really was an awesome light though.  I actually preferred it over the Radion ...... minus it was a bit "thick". 

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Dirté Sanchez
3 minutes ago, jack1978 said:

I was trying to save you a divorce!

....it really was an awesome light though.  I actually preferred it over the Radion ...... minus it was a bit "thick". 

Thanks! 

 

That light looks a bit humongous- that’s part of why I’m wanting one single light like the Kessil or the ReefLED to be a little more clean and minimalistic in appearance. My husband complained it was starting to look a bit trashy. Plus, there’s 5 huge plugs associated with the Orbit system, so changing to one light would eliminate two of those, as well as three lights over the tank to boot. 

 

It makes me a bit nervous running two big power strips to get everything running 

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DSFIRSTSLTWATER

I wish I had the motivation to test all the time lol. All I test is alk now. I go by how the corals look. If all of them look unhappy I'll get the test kits out and see how everything is. Right now the corals are looking the best I've ever seen them. I'm not too concerned on nutrient levels anymore since I've gone bare bottom. The flow in the tank has all the shit collecting in one spot so water change day I just suck it all out. I only have one fish so I don't really get to over feed and if I do it's easy to stir up dead spots and have the overflow take care of the rest. 

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jack1978
22 minutes ago, Dirté Sanchez said:

Thanks! 

 

That light looks a bit humongous- that’s part of why I’m wanting one single light like the Kessil or the ReefLED to be a little more clean and minimalistic in appearance. My husband complained it was starting to look a bit trashy. Plus, there’s 5 huge plugs associated with the Orbit system, so changing to one light would eliminate two of those, as well as three lights over the tank to boot. 

 

It makes me a bit nervous running two big power strips to get everything running 

Yeah, it's got some junk in the trunk.

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Dirté Sanchez
13 minutes ago, DSFIRSTSLTWATER said:

I wish I had the motivation to test all the time lol. All I test is alk now. I go by how the corals look. If all of them look unhappy I'll get the test kits out and see how everything is. Right now the corals are looking the best I've ever seen them. I'm not too concerned on nutrient levels anymore since I've gone bare bottom. The flow in the tank has all the shit collecting in one spot so water change day I just suck it all out. I only have one fish so I don't really get to over feed and if I do it's easy to stir up dead spots and have the overflow take care of the rest. 

Well, that goes back to how I live off blood chemistry tests. My whole career is based off interpreting blood gases and tweaking the life support machine to perfect said blood gas (ph, bicarb, CO2/O2, K, Na, Ca...) then there’s other goodies like chemistry panels that have mag, whole Ca, phos... it’s what I do. Playing with the test kits is soothing to me (how frightening is that?). 

 

BUT. I’m trying (TRYING) to get down to once a week only with water changes. That’s my goal. Trying to get to where I just look at how every one is acting or looks and judge off that like all you experienced people. You have no idea how hard that is for me though.

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DSFIRSTSLTWATER
1 hour ago, Dirté Sanchez said:

Or, I can get a new Red Sea ReefLED 90w for less than both those deals with the arm from BRS. The Kessil A360WE is also 90w... choices choices.

I think i'm going to get the red sea reef lights for the 75. They look really awesome and the app looks like it's easy to manage. 

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Dirté Sanchez
16 minutes ago, jack1978 said:

Yeah, it's got some junk in the trunk.

I think I may go with the Kessil- the Red Sea is a tad more expensive and Kessil is proven with good history and lots of reviews. Just gotta wait a couple days for Le bonus. 

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Dirté Sanchez
1 minute ago, DSFIRSTSLTWATER said:

I think i'm going to get the red sea reef lights for the 75. They look really awesome and the app looks like it's easy to manage. 

Yeah that was what was tearing me up. I sure love apps 😂. I’m like a technology meth addict. But I can get a little more bang for my buck with the Kessil I think.

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DSFIRSTSLTWATER
3 minutes ago, Dirté Sanchez said:

Well, that goes back to how I live off blood chemistry tests. My whole career is based off interpreting blood gases and tweaking the life support machine to perfect said blood gas (ph, bicarb, CO2/O2, K, Na, Ca...) then there’s other goodies like chemistry panels that have mag, whole Ca, phos... it’s what I do. Playing with the test kits is soothing to me (how frightening is that?). 

 

BUT. I’m trying (TRYING) to get down to once a week only with water changes. That’s my goal. Trying to get to where I just look at how every one is acting or looks and judge off that like all you experienced people. You have no idea how hard that is for me though.

I get it totally. I actually like testing. I tested a lot when I first set up my old tank. As things started getting out of hand I stopped testing because it was discouraging. I'll probably test more with this new tank because everything is clean and I want to keep it like that. Will see though 😂

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jack1978
12 minutes ago, Dirté Sanchez said:

I think I may go with the Kessil- the Red Sea is a tad more expensive and Kessil is proven with good history and lots of reviews. Just gotta wait a couple days for Le bonus. 

I almost got the Kessil for my IM ..... Went with a Hybrid instead. 

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Dirté Sanchez
4 minutes ago, jack1978 said:

I almost got the Kessil for my IM ..... Went with a Hybrid instead. 

I’ve thought about that too but those really are too much for me. I can’t hang anything over the tank without a lot of trouble and long long cables either, so it’s got to be able to use an arm or gooseneck.

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FISHnChix
3 minutes ago, Dirté Sanchez said:

That’s a great package and I’d take it all but I can’t reply on there 😢

What I did when I started my account to buy my kessils 😊 was just pm the person and not bother replying on the the thread (not to mention. I couldn't reply on the thread yet lol)

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