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Old 10-01-2004, 12:04 AM   #1
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Cyanobacteria

I recently developed a problem with red cyanobacteria in my reef aquarium. The cyanobacteria(essentially red algae) is quickly spreading through my aquarium and beginning to cover some of my corals. I have tried reducing the amount of time I run my lights as well as reducing the nutrients I add to the aquarium. I have not even been able to slow down the growth rate of the bacteria at this point. What is the next step to managing this problem?
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Old 10-01-2004, 12:18 AM   #2
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Check PO4, it is the main "food" of cyno. Reduction through the use of PO4 sponges will help, but you need to find the source.
Overfeeding is a common cause. Also the use of tap water will feed the outbreak as well as other factors.
TO cure:
Us R/O water, if you already are, add the use of a deionizer to reduce PO4 in your source water.
Do frequent water changes with water low ir PO4.
siphon of the "mats" of cyno, breaking it up will only spread it.
Do not over feed. Only feed as much as you fish will eat in a couple of minutes.
Add water movement to areas of low flow with the use of PH's. Don't let it set up.
A productive skimmer will help. If your skimmer does not produce several cups of dark skimmage every week, consider an upgrade.
Po4 rediction is the key. I completely eliminated my cyno problem with the above.
Good luck!!
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Old 10-01-2004, 09:34 AM   #3
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How long has the tank been running.
How old are your bulbs? Light spectrum is another cause of cyno. If your bulbs are old you should change them.
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Old 10-01-2004, 08:45 PM   #4
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Strong water flow of at least 10x-20x will also help prevent it from getting established.
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Old 10-02-2004, 12:28 AM   #5
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The tank was set up about 3 months ago. So the bulbs are about 3 months old. I would consider them fairly new, but I am familar with how long they should last. Do you think lighting is the issue?
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Old 10-02-2004, 12:30 AM   #6
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May be helping it thrive, but is not the root of the cause. Nutrient redution in the primary concern.
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Old 10-02-2004, 11:14 AM   #7
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Have you checked you water yet? Like QS says this is the major cause of cyno all the other issues can just help it grow. check for phosphates and let us know what you find.
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Old 10-02-2004, 01:54 PM   #8
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As bulbs get older they shift more towards the red spectrum, red is a color cyano enjoys. With your bulbs only being 3 months old I dought thier the problem. Cyano is both a bacteria and an algae living together as one. So as mentioned above nutrients is usually the culprit. When you are doing P testing try to do it in several locations, not just in the water column. This way you have a better chance at locating the source. Do a test in the water column, on the surface of the rocks and on top of the sediment if you have any..

Good luck

Mike
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