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Old 12-19-2009, 07:12 PM   #1
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Algae problem

Hello!

I have an algae problem in my 40g reef tank (a lot of green hairy algae growing on my live rock). I keep removing the algae by hand but it grows back imediately.
Also the glass gets completly green in max. 2-3 days after i clean it.

I have no slime algae (ciano or diatoms).

I have zero PO4 and NO3 in my tank so this cannot be the problem.

I bought an algae blenny (salarias), but it won't eat the already grown algae and recently it seems to like the food I'm giving to the other fish more than the algae... so this didn't solv my problem either.

Could the lighting be the problem? I have a 4*24 T5 HO fixture with one actinic and three 10k lights. I run them for 11 hours a day.

What else could I try to get rid of this problem.

Thanks!
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Old 12-19-2009, 08:14 PM   #2
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11 hours is a bit long, I only run my main lights (MH) for 7 hours. No algae at all, besides coralline algae. Is your tank near a window? Sunlight? What are your nitrate readings?
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Old 12-19-2009, 09:41 PM   #3
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Same algae problem

Was going to post a similar question. 75G mature reef tank with new MH light with same problem. Also seeing suppression of coralline algae growth. A few years ago, when I was just using compact fluorescent I had no nitrate and no real green algae problem. Have not tested for Nitrates in years, so just ordered a test kit. I do have some natural sunlight and am running the lights about 10 hours.

I will cut the light time down to 7 hours and see if that helps.

Any reason why I would have nitrates now and did not have them a few years ago with all the live rock I have?

Thanks in advance for any ideas or thoughts!
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Old 12-20-2009, 06:31 AM   #4
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Maybe overfeeding them? It could be a number of things. Its hard to pinpoint what it is causing it.
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Old 12-20-2009, 06:57 AM   #5
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Your nitrates are 0/low because the algae is consuming it and making it appear that somehow by magic you have no/low nitrates and algae. Your nitrates are not really 0
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Old 12-20-2009, 07:11 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by CaptainAhab View Post
Your nitrates are 0/low because the algae is consuming it and making it appear that somehow by magic you have no/low nitrates and algae. Your nitrates are not really 0
I thought about that also. But what is the solution?
I have a good skimmer (designed for 100g), I have a "Nitratreductor" and a phosphate sponge. I am not feeding too much anyway.
The aquarium is not near a window or sunny place.

I could cut back on lighting hours, but wouldn't this affect my corals?
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Old 12-20-2009, 08:13 AM   #7
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IMO: while lighting plays a factor more often than not it is feeding. Either how much or what kind. I had an algae outbreak not too long ago and the only thing different I was doing was I had switched salt brands (which doesn't really fit with the last sentence I just thought I'd throw that in as a hmmmmm moment). I switched back and it greatly reduced itself. Anecdotal, perhaps..

Feed less/better quality
macro in your sump
PWC more
buy critters/livestock that eat it
change your bulbs if they are old
reduce your lighting

That's my recommended order
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Old 12-20-2009, 10:02 AM   #8
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11 hours! try reducing it to about 6 for now and get a good scraper and then do regular changes, take out any decorations and scrub em'
Good Luck
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Old 12-20-2009, 12:22 PM   #9
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My lights run for 10... 8hrs or 10k and ac, 1 hour on each end ac only. Have for years


O yea, hopefully your using RO/DI water.. If not that's probably a big contributor as well
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Old 12-20-2009, 01:26 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by foxmulder View Post
Hello!

I have an algae problem in my 40g reef tank (a lot of green hairy algae growing on my live rock). I keep removing the algae by hand but it grows back imediately.
Also the glass gets completly green in max. 2-3 days after i clean it.

I have no slime algae (ciano or diatoms).

I have zero PO4 and NO3 in my tank so this cannot be the problem.

I bought an algae blenny (salarias), but it won't eat the already grown algae and recently it seems to like the food I'm giving to the other fish more than the algae... so this didn't solv my problem either.

Could the lighting be the problem? I have a 4*24 T5 HO fixture with one actinic and three 10k lights. I run them for 11 hours a day.

What else could I try to get rid of this problem.

Thanks!
test kits are really only good when the tank is "perfect" P04 kits are probably the biggest waste of money in the hobby (unless its a le mott, hatch or electronic)
The relation of % of p04 and nitrates is pretty important, as phosphate is both organic and inorganic and only one can be tested for you should probably just assume elevated phosphate and start running a phosphate binder (start small and be patient) if you have the numbers for alc/calc/mag/ph there could be a clue there as well. RO/DI water, manual removal, check how old your bulbs are, blow off all the rocks with a turkey baster 2x a week and if possible get a filter sock on your return, if no sump a canister with filterfloss cleaned daily will assist in capturing detritus and loose algae
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