I was given a 90 gallon salt water reef system around the beginning of March. It had belonged to a friend of mine and he had gotten tired of it so there wasn't much living in it when he gave it to me. I cycled it for 3 -4 four months then when it seemed that the nitrates were near zero, I decided to try adding some fish. I chose Tangs because I thought they could help with an algae problem. Unfortunately, the Tangs that I added must have had Ick becuase they caused almost all of the fish in my aquarium to develop white spots. Three ended up dying, before I could set up a qt tank. Two of the three were not removed after they died. This, of course, was great fertilizer and I now have a very large algae problem. I have been reading everything I can find to address the problem and I wanted to get some feedback from some folks to be sure I am taking the most logical steps. The problem is definitely improving as my nitrate level is now back to close to zero, but there is still a coating of algae on all my live rock.
I have done the following: 1) Used a phosphate sponge to try and remove excess phosphates (I don't have a phosphate analysis kit yet), 2) Used Kalwasser because I read it will help precipitate excess phosphate - obviously this will help raise calcium levels as well 3) dramatically improved the amount of water movement by adding two 300 gph
pumps. This I read should help keep the CO2
levels low as well as help with waste removal. 4) Cut way back on the hours of my MH
lighting. I think I have gone from about 13 hours to around 6 hours. I don't have any coral right now so doing this isn't a problem. 5) I have pulled out the large clumps of algae simply with my hands. I haven't tried using a brush.
I am planning on purchasing some algae eaters this weekend such as snails, sally lightfoot crabs, and hermit crabs. I only have a couple of snails and a couple small hermit crabs right now.
Are there other things I should consider trying to slow the growth of the algae and getting it under control?
Thanks in advance for any help anyone can give.