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Poodges

Algae ID Please!

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Poodges

I have been battling this crap for about a month. I thought it was diatoms because I had a fish die while I was out of town but I don’t think so anymore. It’s brownish in color primarily, traps oxygen, stringy in the sand and it’s on my rocks as well.  Corals are irritated. Lps seems fine but soft corals are pissed. Zoanthids haven’t opened in a long time.  Any ideas?

 

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banasophia

Any chance you can get a pic under white lights? Correct identification is important for treatment and it can be hard to tell under blues. 🙂

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Sancho

I’m taking a stab in the dark here it could be diatoms however a month is a little long to be dealing with that. Have you tested your water? Given your description that it traps oxygen and is stringy it could very well be dinoflagellates or even cyano. Either way I’d manually remove as much as possible, kill the lights for a few days and treat with chemiclean. If it’s cyano the chemiclean will take care of it. If it’s dinoflagellates the lights out will probably take care of it

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billygoat

The fact that your zoas are having a negative reaction leads me to believe that it's probably not diatoms, as I don't think that those normally release any sort of toxins or other irritants. Also a month is kind of a while to have diatoms continuously blooming, as @Sancho mentioned. My guess would probably be dinoflagellates or possibly dinos mixed with something else, but yeah some close-up pics under whites would certainly help out with a diagnosis.

 

Have you lost any snails or other CUC members since the bloom? Certain species of dinos produce toxins that kill grazers, so that could be a giveaway if it has happened.

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Poodges

Thank you for all the feedback. I’m afraid it’s Dino’s.  I’ll try and get some better pics under whiter lights today and post.  

 

I haven’t noticed any major snail deaths lately but I did have a foxface die which is a grazer.  Maybe just a coincidence.  

 

If if I go lights out for a few days, do I have to cover the tank as well?

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Poodges
11 hours ago, banasophia said:

Any chance you can get a pic under white lights? Correct identification is important for treatment and it can be hard to tell under blues. 🙂

@banasophia Here are some better pics with just camera flash, no tank lights

 

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zoas.thumb.JPG.8da109b80b3fadb321276d545647eb2c.JPG

 

 

 

 

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banasophia

Those pics are much better! Looks more like diatoms to me, but I really don’t have enough experience to say for sure, and I’ve never had dino, so hopefully others will chime in.

 

Another good option for algae ID is that you can always submit pics to @johnmaloney at ReefCleaners, they are willing to help with nuisance algae identification and suggest clean up crew to address it:

 

https://www.reefcleaners.org/nuisance-algae-id-guide

 

 

 

 

 

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johnmaloney

Looks like diatoms to me too

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Poodges

Thank you all! Gonna roll with diatoms for now and do what I can to mitigate 

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banasophia
22 minutes ago, Poodges said:

Thank you all! Gonna roll with diatoms for now and do what I can to mitigate 

Maybe add more snails that will eat it? 

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Poodges

Just got a shipment in today from ReefCleaners.  👍

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ml86743

Diaaaaatomssssss!

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billygoat

Oh yeah, doesn't seem stringy enough to be dinos now that I look at it closely. Pretty weird to have such a massive bloom of diatoms for such a long time but hey, stranger things have happened in this hobby. 🤷‍♂️ Hopefully your new CUC from Reef Cleaners will eat it all up. 😁

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Josh&Sarah's Reef

I think I'm dealing with relentless diatoms as well... All over everything.  I can turkey baste the rocks to a point and mag float / scrape the glass.  The glass film comes off pretty thick.  My tank is newer though.  I have not lost any CUC so here's to hoping and good luck to you!

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mcarroll
On 9/11/2019 at 8:33 PM, Poodges said:

I have been battling this crap for about a month. I thought it was diatoms because I had a fish die while I was out of town but I don’t think so anymore. It’s brownish in color primarily, traps oxygen, stringy in the sand and it’s on my rocks as well.  Corals are irritated. Lps seems fine but soft corals are pissed. Zoanthids haven’t opened in a long time.  Any ideas?

Sounds like dinoflagellates.

 

Sounds like you should be running activated carbon ASAP.  Do that now THEN read the rest of this post....

 

No...go do the activated carbon....  😉

 

The activated carbon will absorb toxins from the water and probably take some of the immediate stress off your corals.

 

But there is more to is than that. 

 

Can you tell us more about the system?

 

How old?

 

Live rock or dead rock?

 

Is there any green algae or coraline algae growing?

 

How are your pods doing?

 

How is your cleanup crew doing?

 

Any excessive filration?   (GFO, carbon dosing, macro algae, resin media, bio-media, etc.)

 

On 9/12/2019 at 12:54 PM, Poodges said:

Thank you all! Gonna roll with diatoms for now and do what I can to mitigate 

 

No reason to make assumptions.  Do this:

 

  1. Take a sample of the algae and some gravel if you have to and put it in a little jar or vial. 
  2. Shake it up to dislodge all the alge and homogenize it into tiny bits. 
  3. If possible, take the gravel out so it's easier to see the algae after they settle. 
  4. Then place the jar with the remaining water and algae and leave it under a light or in the sun for a while. 
  5. If the algae bits coalesce into blobs or strings, etc, then it's dino's. 
  6. If it doesn't coalesce and just remains in bits then it's either diatoms, cyano or (more likely) some mixture.

 

Any chance of getting a microscope involved?   

 

Even a toy scope will work if you have one around. 

 

A new scope doesn't have to cost much more than $10.....$50 will get a really nice basic scope. 

 

(IMO a scope and a light meter should be basic equipment for us reefers.   Both start at around $10 for a useful model.)

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