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Old 09-01-2003, 08:26 PM   #1
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Help! Noive needs advice with Algae problem

Hi there - I am a novice at this. I have a 72 gal marine aquarium that has been set up for over 6 months now. I was doing fine until recently. I have an out of control algae problem. Not sure what kind it is but it grows in huge green thick patches on the sand, rocks, and glass sides of the tank. The algae on the glass also has some more brownish stuff as well as the green.

My tank is kept at 81 degrees and has lights on for about 14 hours a day. It has a protein skimmer, UV, 2 powerheads, and heaters. The stock is about six fish (lion fish, trigger, paddle fins) and some live rock (although I'm not sure it is alive anymore.)

Any advice on where to begin correcting this problem. I have tried scrubbing all the algae away and changing 30% of the water but it grows back within a week.

The fish are fine - they show no signs of ill health. I would appreciate any help and can provide more info to help diagnose the problem.

B. Sugam - San Fran

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Old 09-01-2003, 09:08 PM   #2
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I would make sure the water params are where they should be and change photoperiod back to 6 or 7 hours for now. Use a very hungry cleanup crew and RO/DI water. Probably lower the temp to 76-78.

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Old 09-02-2003, 02:35 AM   #3
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I'd say the 14 hour light period is the culprit here.
- Gauge

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Old 09-02-2003, 02:58 PM   #4
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Diligent manual removal is the only way to beat this stuff. It may take a couple months, but you can beat it.

Also, as was said before, reduce photo period and use RO water for make up and changes. I don't think that you'll find a clean up crew that will touch it.
Bob Ashcraft
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Old 09-02-2003, 03:17 PM   #5
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I'll pretty much echo what everyone else said. Definitely cut back a bit on the lighting - also, what kind of lights? 14 hours/day for 6 months - they may also be at the end of their life.

The stock is about six fish (lion fish, trigger, paddle fins) and some live rock
If all 6 fish are the same relative size as triggers, lions, etc. ,then I'm guessing your are significantly overstocked for a 72g. I'm going to take a wild guess, and assume you have about 24-25 inches of fish in your tank - which is about the maximum stocking limit for a 120g.

What are your nitrate & phosphate levels?

You mention "some" live rock - how much? If not a lot, what type of filtration are you using?

Are you using and RO/DI filter for your water? Water changes are great - as long as the water your using to replace the changed water is nutrient and contaminant-free.

Algae needs 2 things to thrive - food & light. You can cut back on the lighting, but most algaes will thrive even with minimal light. The trick is in nutrient (food) removal - nitrates and phosphates being the big algae 'boosters'.

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