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Old 03-15-2005, 02:05 PM   #41
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I'm getting tired of pulling this stuff out, would a UV just prevent more from growing or kill the stuff thats there now? Also what fish might help control this stuff?
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Old 03-15-2005, 02:22 PM   #42
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A uv will kill the spores that cause it but won't kill what is in there. I notice you have a tang in there. It doesn't eat it? Rabbitfish are supposed to be very good at eating hair algae. Lawnmower blennies are very good too.
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Old 03-15-2005, 02:33 PM   #43
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Has nobody mentioned getting a lawn mower blenny? Mine loves hair algae.
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Old 03-15-2005, 02:33 PM   #44
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Tang didn't touch it, he has died..., I had an algea blenny who never touched it, but only lived for a few weeks... Now that looks like I loose a lot of fish, but I have had clowns since I started this 3 years ago and they are happier then ever...

My water conditions seem ideal when ever I test them...

This is just getting really frustrating
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Old 03-15-2005, 02:38 PM   #45
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Have you taken some of your water to the lfs and had them test it? I would suggest doing that, just to make sure your home test is not giving you false readings. I am going to start doing some serious research for you (I am the research Queen) and I will get back with you in the next couple of hours with my findings.

If you are loosing fish like lawn mower blennies then you must have some water condition issues. They are very hardy and hard to kill.

What type of lfs do you use? Is it a chain or a Mom & Pop store?
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Old 03-15-2005, 02:39 PM   #46
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I'd try a UV filter personally. From my experience with my pond it can only help. It certainly isn't going to hurt (unless you consider your pocket )!
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Old 03-15-2005, 03:14 PM   #47
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Reef tanks require good lighting for proper growth of invertebrates that have algal cells growing in their tissues. Strong lighting also spurs hair algae growth. (Fact of life, plants grow faster with stronger light--chlorophyll etc.) The main problem is evaporation, though. High evaporation rates combined with city water, high in PHOSPHATES, spell sure trouble with hair algae. Although lighting and other things contribute, the point to remember is PHOSPHATES = HAIR ALGAE. Stop the phosphates and the hair algae growth will stop, or at least come down to a manageable level where snails etc. can keep your tank looking good.

Phosphates generally enter through city water, but some "trace element" mixtures available on the market have substantial amounts of phosphates. In fact, the two best-known trace element supplements have phosphates added on purpose, so BEWARE! Of course algae growth fertilizers generally have phosphates also. Some sea salt mixtures have more phosphates than others, so read up on these and use one with the lowest phosphates possible.

The following is a list of things to be done:

1.Install an R/O unit and use only R/O water for water changes and topping off for evaporation.

2.Use a good quality protein skimmer. (The biggest you can find.)

3.Use only trace elements, foods, fertilizers, carbons, etc. that contain no phosphates or silicates!

4.Use Phosphate Sponge (this product is not a sponge but actually a regenerable granular ceramic product) to remove phosphates and silicates now present. Continued use will insure any phosphates accidentally added will be adsorbed and removed from the system.

5.Make sure your protein skimmer is large enough. There has been debate about overskimming a tank and whether one should skim a tank at all. But when a tank is new or when there are algae problems, "size" always helps.

6.Remove all the hair algae you can.

7.Stop adding any trace elements or supplements. Algae are very opportunistic and additional trace elements or supplements will often boost growth. The major element to control is iron. If a product doesn't list its ingredients (some proprietary supplements don't list the ingredients), don't add it to the tank since you might be adding something that will greatly increase algae growth.

8.Vacuum detritus regularly and practice good tank maintenance.

9.If you are already practicing the above, your other problem may be old lamps (more than 6 months). Lamps continue to burn, but since their spectrum has shifted, they will assist hair algae, and not help corals and photosynthetic inverts like they should. Change bulbs every six months! The other problem with lighting is too long a photo period. Many aquarists run metal halides or VHO fluorescents for 10 to 12 hours a day. Hair algae is very opportunistic, you will never get it under control with this much light. Reefs don’t get 12 hours of "high noon" sunlight anyway. We recommend that you get some 40 watt fluorescents to run 10 hours per day and run your metal halides or VHO’s only 4 hours per day. While getting the hair algae under control limit them to 1 to 2 hours!

10.Critters that eat Hair Algae are: Scarlet Leg Hermit Crabs, Blue Leg Hermit Crabs, Hypselodoris bullocki and Astrea Snails. Purchase about one astrea snail per gallon of tank capacity. (This sounds like too many snails but is the amount required to do a really good job.)

11.Introduce additional detritivores. If excess food isn't eaten, it will decay and add to the nutrients and waste in the tank. Addition of bristle stars, bristleworms, hermit crabs, Nassarius snails and sea cucumbers will help control the excess food that a reeftank's primary fish and invertebrates don't consume.

Okay now tell me what you have done and what you havent based on this list. We can go from there.
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Old 03-15-2005, 03:29 PM   #48
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Do you have a refugium? Macroalgae can be helpful in outcompeteing the nuisance algae for what nutirents may be present in your water.

I have one small tuft of hair algae on a rock, and it hasn't grown at all in over a month. I'm watching it very carefully!! I'm kind of afraid to cut it because I don't want the filaments racing around the tank.
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30 gal standard 55 lbs LR, 60 lb live sand, 10 gal sump/refugium. Urchin skimmer, mag7 pump, 3 x 96W PC combination 10,000K/actinic bulb, 2 blue LED moonlights
SG 1.024, temp 79.5, pH 8.4

Livestock I added:

1 skunk cleaner. 12 hermits: red, scarlet, blue. 15 or so assorted snails. Discosomas, Ricordia, Rhodactis mushroom corals, chaetomorpha (sump), 1 feather duster, Montipora digitata, Montipora capricornis, Montipora hispids. assorted zoos, Xenia, Kenya tree coral, green Sinularia, green star polyps, branching hammer coral, bubble coral, Devil's hand leather. Yellow chromis, purple firefish.

Hitchhikers: the usual suspects :crabs, bristles, urchin, mantis shrimp (now in exile in mantis tank)

List of possible/likely newcomers:

Feather duster. PJ cardinal, Bangghai cardinal, Firefish goby, Clownfish, Neon goby, Yellow watchman goby, Orchid dottyback. Various corals.
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Old 03-15-2005, 04:42 PM   #49
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I use RO, have a skimmer, lights are only a few months old... I am going to cut back the lighting to 8 hrs a day... I pull it out almost every other day I can never get close to getting it all out.
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Old 03-15-2005, 05:13 PM   #50
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I'm fighting the same battle right now, some things that have helped were to use the siphoning tube like a vaccuum cleaner during a partial water change (this is much easier than picking the stuff by hand) and the addition of a royal urchin (Mespilia globulus). Unfortunately the urchin was killed by a mantis shrimp, but it did a great job while it was alive. My lawnmower blenny also does good work.
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55 gallon reef tank--Jaubert/Plenum live sand filtration with protein skimmer. Actinic lighting, 2x 295 gph pumps.
1 Purple Tang
2 PJ Cardinals
1 Lawnmower Blenny
1 Sea Hare (a short lived species)
1 Cleaner Shrimp
1 Pencil Urchin
1 Sand Sifter Star
Assorted hermit crabs & snails
Button Polyps
Green Mushroom coral
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