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geekreef_05

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So your assumption is that bacteria which lives in the water column settles somewhere when it dies?

 

Im gonna have to ask for references on that.

 

I dont know the answer. But id like to see what work has been done.  

 

My assumption is that by doing a water change i will remove alot of dead bacteria. For assured results i could blow off some glass and sand prior to the WC.

 

Post WC, hopefully the remaining dead bacteria is hopefully consumed by live bacteria which i could add for a boost. Or I might put a gallon water from another clean tank into this one during the WC. 

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1 hour ago, geekreef_05 said:

So your assumption is that bacteria which lives in the water column settles somewhere when it dies?

 

Im gonna have to ask for references on that.

 

I dont know the answer. But id like to see what work has been done.  

 

My assumption is that by doing a water change i will remove alot of dead bacteria. For assured results i could blow off some glass and sand prior to the WC.

 

Post WC, hopefully the remaining dead bacteria is hopefully consumed by live bacteria which i could add for a boost. Or I might put a gallon water from another clean tank into this one during the WC. 

I’ve done 0 research on it, just figuring dead suff falls out of suspension, as it can’t locomote.  I may be completely wrong, just playing it by ear.  If I was going to research, i’d start by googling ‘does pelagic bacteria stay pelagic when it dies?’.  Hope that helps.

 

The WC would be my first stop, apologies, this would have been stench control measure #1, I assumed you’d already done one, mea culpa ✌🏼
 

I do remember in BRS’s biome thing, they said the bacterial transfer from just doing the water was minimal.  They found some shared media from an old tank, from an unlit section was the best way to transfer good biology. 🤷🏻‍♂️.

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Dude, 

 

I appreciate that your trying to help. You seem like a good person and i know your passionate about the hobby. 

 

That said, im gonna ask that you hold the recommendations on my tank journal thread. Primarily this is for myself to ensure good record keeping, so i can go back later, evaluate and learn. If i want to ask for assistance I will ask the open question here or post under the general forum.

 

If your following along, just sit back and enjoy the ride. 

 

If you have comments from your own personal experience pertaining to the specific subject matter at hand, i welcome that. I welcome philosophical reflections. And i certainly welcome questions if you wonder WHY im doing what im doing. I think you should have alot of questions. 

 

Consider that if i quickly followed your advice i may have spent money on a live bacteria that does not live in the water column. 

 

Before you provide advice really understand what your talking about. Providing advice without having a solid reference, in a hobby based on observational data, is not cool in my books. If its just hersay, state that upfront. 

 

Thats a small consquence, but it makes me think about the people (for example) who tell others to buy skimmers for pH boosting. Does it really help? Where are the measurement numbers? A skimmer is an expensive gamble in both time and money.

 

Im just saying be careful not to fall into that trap. Too many people do. 

 

For note the BRS biome work was looking at seeding and cycling tanks. That is mostly dependent on surface dwelling bacteria vs water column based. 

 

Since im just replacing water based bacteria it would make sense that can be taken from another water sample. 

 

Generally water based bacterias are alot less prominent in our tanks compared to surface based.  

 

Again, appreciate you're candor. Im not trying to put you down. I appreciate that your trying to be helpful. 

 

Just sit back and chill 🙂. Ask questions if your interested. Share your related experiences! 

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Just one last thing and I'll be gone.  I've dealt with bacterial blooms, dealt with them with UV, jut never had that sulfur thing, so I gave my best guess.  I don't thiink I ever suggesting adding bacteria, just remembered that tidbit from the BRS vid.  You're right though, if you're replacing pelagic bacteria, you''re not going to find it in benthic filled media.

 

Anyway, apologies for cluttering your build, I'll keep to myself from now on ✌️❤️

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44 minutes ago, geekreef_05 said:

Dude, 

 

I appreciate that your trying to help. You seem like a good person and i know your passionate about the hobby. 

 

That said, im gonna ask that you hold the recommendations on my tank journal thread. Primarily this is for myself to ensure good record keeping, so i can go back later, evaluate and learn. If i want to ask for assistance I will ask the open question here or post under the general forum.


Very nicely said. I’ve been thinking about how to say this.

 

21 minutes ago, PJPS said:

Anyway, apologies for cluttering your build, I'll keep to myself from now on ✌️❤️


I don’t think it’s about clutter or keeping to yourself… I can say for myself I love having people pop in to check out my tank journal threads to shoot the breeze or talk about them.
 

But it can be a little frustrating sometimes when people come in and give unsolicited advice or seem to be questioning my every move or bossing me around and telling me what to do with my tank rather than just sharing their own experiences and ideas for consideration. 
 

Our tank journals are different from threads where we are specifically asking for help. 
 

@PJPS I really enjoy interacting with you here in the forum, I hope to continue… maybe just lighten up a little with the questioning and directing. 💛

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27 minutes ago, PJPS said:

Just one last thing and I'll be gone.  I've dealt with bacterial blooms, dealt with them with UV, jut never had that sulfur thing, so I gave my best guess.  I don't thiink I ever suggesting adding bacteria, just remembered that tidbit from the BRS vid.  You're right though, if you're replacing pelagic bacteria, you''re not going to find it in benthic filled media.

 

Anyway, apologies for cluttering your build, I'll keep to myself from now on ✌️❤️

 

Dude, stop on by and chill. 

Ask questions, discuss. Don't be hard on yourself. 

 

We're all excited about our hobby. And its to meet folks who share that passion. 

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Reef Update, Feb 14th 2023

 

Significant Issues

Sulfur stench still prominent, but declining slowly. 

 

Corals

Indo torch went polyp bailout as predicted. Unfortunate. Removed body from reef. 

 

Fish

Breath is heavy. Behaviour is Lethargic. No external body signs of stress. Still swimming around the tank. Just slow. The sulfur levels must be affecting them.

 

Female clown didnt really eat today

 

Hardware 

UV sterilizer removed. Water clarity excellent. 

 

Parameters

Ammonia is nil. 

pH terribly low

 

 

Next Steps

Water is mixing for a 40% change.

 

20230214_164045.thumb.jpg.c99d769d0a959612738800a67799639c.jpg

 

I'll do some water tests later this evening, post water change. 

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Reef Update, Feb 14th 2023

3 hrs Post Water Change

 

Significant Issues

Sulfur stench still prominent. Definate decrease in smell. But that it remains at all is unfortunate and surprising. 

 

Corals

  • Torches looking good. 
  • Goni getting comfy and well opened last few days. 
  • Xenia has adjusted to flow few days ago and pulses well..
  • GSP skittish. Still not fully settled. Shrimp often all over them 

 

 

Fish, Shrimp 

Breathing has improved, but is still laboured. Fish are not bad to normal yet. Shrimp seem lethargic.

 

Sulfur exposure problem, likely.

 

Hardware 

New carbon and filter floss

All 4 Reef topped up. 1 litre. 

 

Parameters

  • Ammonia is nil. 
  • Noted that 02 level shot up by 0.2 post WC 
  • pH is up by 0.1 post WC
  • Both likely to drop to normal in 12hrs 

 

Next Steps

Tomorrow, 40% water change.

Full water test

 

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What is your opinion on the All 4 Reef?  I briefly scrolled through the thread and saw you had mentioned switching from 2 part I think?

 

Looks like a pretty simple solution to dose.  

 

Also, I'm a sucker for shallow tanks and the dimensions on this thing are so awesome, I'm looking forward to the progression of the build. 

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All for Reef is fantastic. On the previous 13.5 gallon i was using the liquid. Now im mixing the powder for better cost. Both are good. 

 

For a mixed nano reef it might be the only product one needs. Plus its got all the trace elements.

 

That said if you're keeping sps or torches or something that needs more specific alk or mg tuning, then you will still need to supplement/ dose on top of the all for reef. 

 

The only problem i had in my 13.5 was clogging / seizing of the dosing lines. i was dosing around 5-10ml/day at the time. 

 

The product needs to move through the lines as often as possible.

 

On my Shallow Reef (35 gallon vol) its using like 150ml/day.  No problems ceasing up at that daily dosing. 

 

That said, if you have a 20 gallon or below and are using a dosing pump, i suggest cutting the all for reef 4:1 with rodi. This allows for more flow per day and finer adjustment of your numbers in a nano.

 

And this will prevent the ceasing of lines. Which is key. Ceasing lines eventually crashed my 13.5 couple years ago. 

 

Hope that helps

 

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Awesome, thanks for the info.  I'll have to see how things shake out regarding consumption rates, glad to hear you like it though.  The trace element aspect of the product seems like a big bonus.  

 

Following along. 👍

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9 minutes ago, ml86743 said:

Awesome, thanks for the info.  I'll have to see how things shake out regarding consumption rates, glad to hear you like it though.  The trace element aspect of the product seems like a big bonus.  

 

Following along. 👍

The powder is also easier to dilute 2:1, which gives you a bit more wiggle room to dose a small tank.  Definitely recommend AFR to dose nano tanks.  I use it in mine, and love it.

 

edit: even better 4:1 as @geekreef_05mentioned.  I’m gonna do 4:1 next time.  So much more room to tweak.

Edited by PJPS
I’m dumb
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I ended up at 4:1 because the 2:1 was still clogging dosing lines in my nano. 

 

Plus you get the added benefit of more control with 4:1 in a nano

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Reef Update, Feb 15th 2023

 

Significant Issues

Sulfur stench has significantly reduced! 

Still remains smelly.

Fish breathing better, but not 100% back to normal

Wife is complaining about it.  

 

Next Steps

Water change is being prepared. 

Hopefully today is the nail in the coffin for the stench issue. 

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8 hours ago, ml86743 said:

Awesome, thanks for the info.  I'll have to see how things shake out regarding consumption rates, glad to hear you like it though.  The trace element aspect of the product seems like a big bonus.  

 

Following along. 👍

 

 

The trace element aspect is a good discussion on its own. Over the years no area has been more overlooked and understudied in reefkeeping.

 

Now with ICP testing and increased knowledge of how potassium, iodine and other trace elements are key to reef inhabitants we can introduce elements that have been missing in the past. 

 

Way back in the day (15yrs ago) i used to put in a spoon of iodine each week, cause it really made the inverts happy. At the time I barely understood why though. We've come along since then in understanding!

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1 hour ago, geekreef_05 said:

 

 

The trace element aspect is a good discussion on its own. Over the years no area has been more overlooked and understudied in reefkeeping.

 

Now with ICP testing and increased knowledge of how potassium, iodine and other trace elements are key to reef inhabitants we can introduce elements that have been missing in the past. 

 

Way back in the day (15yrs ago) i used to put in a spoon of iodine each week, cause it really make the inverts happy. At the time I barely understood why though. We've come along since then in understanding!

That's a good point.  This is really encouraging news!  I did some more reading and like you said several individuals referenced having to supplement CA/alk on top of it if consumption rates got to high.  I'll probably order some and either keep it on the back burner or start with some small manual doses.  I've been lucky as of late, alk sits at roughly 7.8-8 with weekly WC's.  I'll have to string together some calcium/mag tests to see how they play now that the tank is pretty stocked.  

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4 hours ago, geekreef_05 said:

Reef Update, Feb 15th 2023

 

Significant Issues

Sulfur stench has significantly reduced! 

Still remains smelly.

Fish breathing better, but not 100% back to normal

Wife is complaining about it.  

 

Next Steps

Water change is being prepared. 

Hopefully today is the nail in the coffin for the stench issue. 

I only mean this to speed up SO not complaining.  I still think a great deal of dead bacteria settled in the sand/rock.  Here’s the explicit reasoning, maybe it’ll help.  The bacteria died, but wasn’t being skimmed out.  Dead bacteria will pass through a filter sock most of the time.  Why would dead bacteria stay in the water column indefinitely any more than dead food?

 

Just.thought I’d give my full reasoning, as always, you can consider/ignore/follow, just offering some of my reasoning, when I think through it.  Apologies if I’m still doing this wrong ❤️


edit: dead bacteria in the ocean falls to the bottom https://www.whoi.edu/know-your-ocean/ocean-topics/how-the-ocean-works/ocean-zones/twilight-zone/ for reference ❤️

 

Dead animals and marine “snow”— clumps of dead plankton, bacteria, fecal pellets, and other particles rich in organic carbon—sink from surface waters through the twilight zone to the deep ocean” - or in a tank, the sand?  Food for thought.

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Good question. I see your still thinking about it. 

 

I agree that a skimmer would have been useful to remove the bacteria from the water column - but that again requires it to be in the water column, dead or alive. 

 

Lets consider the algae bloom that I had first. All that algae, in the water column making it visibly cloudy. I toss in a UV and kill all the bacteria. Where does it go? 

 

Does it have a reason to sink? 

- Does a dead bacterium weigh more than an alive one?

- What's the buoyancy of that particular dead bacteria? Does it gain or loose buoyancy from alive to dead?

- Does a dead bacterium increase or decrease in size, perhaps being able to be contained by filters? 

- Does a dead bacterium change shape when it dies, increasing or decreasing its water movement? 

- Does it become 'sticky' and stick to surfaces when dead? why and how? 

 

For consideration, I propose that your asking the wrong question. Its not about why would dead bacteria stay in the water indefinitely any more than food. There's no rational reason to compare dead bacteria to food or even a dead body in the ocean. Its got its own thing going on. 

 

This is probably an area that could use more research. Years ago reefers used to be really worried about bursting Bubble Algae in the tank because we thought the spores were producing more. Then someone did an analysis on what was inside those bubbles and there are no spores. So it doesnt matter. I definately spent alot of time in my youth carefully remove Bubble. I had emerald crabs and bubble. Anyway..  

 

Disney engraves in our head that when something dies in the water, it dramatically sinks to the bottom, slow and regal like the Titanic. Its not really the case. 

 

But lets play the other side. Lets assume for an unknown reason this particular bacteria sinks. 

 

Id assume, if the bacterial bloom sank to the bottom, as the UV killed it off, there should be a film of bacteria on my rocks and sand. There was no change to the appearance of the rock and sand, except for the immediate diatom outbreak. Its hard to read into a diatom outbreak at this early stage of the reef. Was it caused by the bacterial death, are they eating the dead bacteria - hard to say for sure. 

 

Lets assume the Bacteria settled on the Rock and Sand. 

- Its dead and on the surface. A quick blow off and/or close suctioning during the WC should pull that out. 

- Maybe a small amount gets mixed into the sandbed before I can do that. Probably not consequential. 

- Maybe its increasing my nitrates. I was planning to check today.

 

Lets do an observational logic check as well on that. 

- The biggest issue and SIGN of dead bacteria is the smell. 

- The smell significantly decreased post 40% WC with some blowing off rocks and sand. 

- My waterflow is so high that I cant keep mushrooms, hammers, etc anywhere on my reef. 

- Given the waterflow most of it should then collect on my mechanical filter. Which did not smell when i pulled it out and replaced it yesterday. Neither did the carbon that I replaced. 

 

- If the dead bacteria / smell is in the sandbed it should get stronger again by end of the week. The off gassing will just continue to build up, slowly. Lets see what happens. 

 

Good question. Have a real think on it. 

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14 minutes ago, geekreef_05 said:

Lets do an observational logic check as well on that. 

- The biggest issue and SIGN of dead bacteria is the smell. 

- The smell significantly decreased post 40% WC with some blowing off rocks and sand. 

- My waterflow is so high that I cant keep mushrooms, hammers, etc anywhere on my reef. 

- Given the waterflow most of it should then collect on my mechanical filter. Which did not smell when i pulled it out and replaced it yesterday. Neither did the carbon that I replaced. 

 

- If the dead bacteria / smell is in the sandbed it should get stronger again by end of the week. The off gassing will just continue to build up, slowly. Lets see what happens. 

your ecosystem is always in flux, we're not looking at a one way street here.  decaying matter doesn't all need to be removed.  decaying matter also gets consumed by new bacterial population or other microorganisms within the tank ecosystem.  If you waited long enough, pending the decaying matter did not tip beyond toxic level, your tank will stabilize back to its own bacterial equilibrium. 

doing water change just helps expedited the exporting of decayed matter or other sulfur-based compound dissolved in the water.  

Just a thought

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In this case remember the fish arent breathing properly and its not an ammonia problem. The female clown didnt eat yesterday. That a major immediate concern.

 

Its very likely sulfur in the water, hence the smell. 

 

So waiting days or weeks for live bacteria and / or my skimmer is too long of a timeline. 

 

A water change is the course of action that will help the fish as quickly as possible. 

 

I appreciate that your trying to help. If you have questions, feel free to ask

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2 hours ago, mitten_reef said:

your ecosystem is always in flux, we're not looking at a one way street here.  decaying matter doesn't all need to be removed.  decaying matter also gets consumed by new bacterial population or other microorganisms within the tank ecosystem.  If you waited long enough, pending the decaying matter did not tip beyond toxic level, your tank will stabilize back to its own bacterial equilibrium. 

doing water change just helps expedited the exporting of decayed matter or other sulfur-based compound dissolved in the water.  

Just a thought

In a larger, water volume, with unstressed livestock I'd agree, this is emergency mode.

 

GR: if mechanical pulled dead bacteria, surely it'd pull most live as well.  I thi'nk you need oam fractionation to remove it from the water.  The higher flow, while somewh;at keeping it suspended is also driving it deeper into whatever crevice it lands in, rock or sand <3.

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Reef Update, Feb 15th 2023

20mins post water change and fish are showing rapid improvement. 

 

Smells better too. 

 

15 gallon wc completed. 

 

Significant Issues

Noted that the sea urchin hasn't moved since this am. Not looking great right now. 

 

Perhaps a stress reaction from the larger wc's. 

 

Its alsl possible that he hasnt had enough to eat over a longer period of time. Until i hit an HA bloom period, food isnt plentiful enough. I knew that and risked getting him early to curb HA before it blooms. 

 

Hate to say it but he may have to be replaced if he doesnt make it.

 

A part of me thinks about adding snails. But im gonna hold the urchin line a little longer. Gut instinct says it should work...just a little longer until the inevitable HA explosion and food will be plentiful.

 

Next Steps

Water parameters check..

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Reef Update, Feb 15th 2023

5hrs post water change. 

  • Fish have improved but their not 100%. Breathing about 75% of normal. 
  • Smell has improved. Not stinking up the house, but still stinking up my office. Not a punch in the face anymore. Not as overwhelming.
  • Sea urchin still hasn't moved. 
  • Tomorrow AM i'll be looking for signs of life. 

 

Hardware

Note today the Ecotech LEDs stopped working without warning. They did not respond to the app. Had to software reset the lights. 

 

Next Steps

Considering a 3rd 40% WC tomorrow with the objective to return fish health to normal. 

 

Skimmer should arrive tomorrow as well. 

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Reef Update, Feb 16th 2023

1hrs post 40% water change. 3rd day of WCs in a row.

  • Fish breathing and acting normally
  • Sulfur smell is gone. 
  • Sea urchin declared dead. 
  • 1 of 3 shrimp dead
  • No clean up crew! Yikes.

 

Hardware

Reef Glass skimmer delivered today. 

 

Awaiting new ATO and dosing reservoirs for a bit of an overhaul to those components (current equioment too small for this reef). 

 

Next Steps

Water test tonight. 

New urchin or snails

 

Observations

Urchin's cause of death maybe one or a combination of factors. Starvation, WC stress, sulfur stress

 

All 3 shrimp molted during this stressful period. 1 lost a couple legs during molt. And perhaps this one died from the molt and sulfur combination. It looked like it had not completed the molt when it died. 2 blood shrimp remain.

 

Fish were gasping for air as if 02 levels were low. But 02 didn't change. Ammonia didnt rise. Sulfur gas poisoning maybe possible. Bacterial poisoning maybe possible. 

 

Conclusion is that the sulfur bloom was toxic to the inhabitants. 

 

Probably to my wife and i as well. I was afraid to light a candle in my office too. It was overpowering at one point.

 

 

Lessons Learned

If a large bacterial bloom returns a larger 50% WC upfront may save the fish and inverts some suffering. Then UV can be used after the WC. 48hrs after UV another large WC may take care of it. 

 

Perhaps that would ultimately lower the live and dead bacteria the fish and inverts are exposed to. 

 

Some information online suggests that if blooms happens once, they'll happen again. And that nothing should be done during the bloom. However waiting it out when the fish are gasping, not moving and the inverts aren't looking good doesn't make sense to me. 

 

I found no information online that correlates such a strong sulfur smell to bacterial die off with cloudy water. Each are found independently of each other. 

 

Perhaps i was dealing with something rare. Perhaps it was two problems at once, both solved by WCs. 

 

The final thought i have is that in my 20 years ive never had this happen before. My entire house smelled of sulfur for a week. And i cant find much info on others with this situation.  Im glad thats over! 

 

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