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Old 01-16-2006, 10:28 AM   #1
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nuissance algae--very long post!

Well, I've read everything there is to read on various types of algae, and I just can't seem to get it under control 100%. My question is, is it always an issue, but just to what degree?

I have a great skimmer, sump with chaeto growing mad, freshly replaced bulbs in PC lighting, nitrates always test 0 and phosphates always test 0. I use RO/DI water only wich also tests 0 for the above.

I do 20% PWC every two weeks--not because my parameters are out of wack, but because I have to vaccuum the substate to remove the algae growing on it.....I can't stand the way it makes my tank look!

I use Kent Sea Salt.

I occasionally dose Kalk when needed, but even that is pretty rare because of my PWC's.

I only feed three times per week and very, very sparingly. I feed various frozen foods well rinsed in RO/DI water.

I have a "medium" bioload....only 3 fish!

I run GAC and change it out 2X per month. I have a good UV sterilizer.

I also have a very fine CC substrate, almost as fine as sand. I have to vaccuum it every week or two due to algae.

Yes, I have a bioball....but just one!

Oh, yeah, I almost forgot.....I have a 55 gal. main with 800 gph water movement in it.

I also have to clean the glass with a mag float every week to keep the glass looking clean. (I only have to scrape corralline every month or so)

All other tank parameters are perfect.

In desperation, I've used chemi-clean twice in the last month (killing a couple feather dusters the first time because I didn't aerate). I have also just started using a phosphate remover in a media bag.

So....is this just part of reef keeping? Should I just suck it up, or will my algae issues ever improve?

If it sounds like I'm whining, it's because I am! I've done everything except change out my CC for sand, but my CC is so fine it's almost the same stuff. I mean, I don't mind vaccuuming substrate, say, once per month or cleaning the glass once a month--but I'm having to do it weekly!

The only other thing I can think of is to remove my one bioball.


Any thoughts or comments would be appreciated......

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Old 01-16-2006, 05:41 PM   #2
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Long post are so discouraging. I`m just playing. I`ll tell you Dr nate. I dont know what you are doing wrong. As far as cleaning your glass every week ,I have to do the same thing and most advisors I see say the same thing. That is part of reef keeping. But the algea in the tank is not. I do everything that you have mentioned except I have sand. I have not had algea in years. The only things I wonder about is do you have sunlight shining in it and you did not mention your clean up crew.

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Old 01-16-2006, 06:18 PM   #3
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Darn! I knew I forgot to mention something. The tank does not have direct sunlight on it, my temp stays constant at 79, and I have about 6 hermit crabs and about 6 turbo snails (used to have a lot more, but they have disappeared over the years)
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Old 01-16-2006, 06:23 PM   #4
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OK, I've got to ask. 'One' bioball?
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Old 01-16-2006, 06:28 PM   #5
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HAHAHA....that's hillarious! I was thinking bioball......of course, I meant BIO-WHEEL. I just got to typing and couldn't stop myself I guess.
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Old 01-16-2006, 06:47 PM   #6
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What type of nuisance algae is it? Just curious..
I see a couple of things that I would change, first of all I would increase dramatically, the number of snails and crabs, they are not near enough to do the job in a tank that size. They have to be replaced periodically unfortunately.You might also increase the flow from the sump to the main, it is rather low. This helps to keep things from settling on the sand bed and will sometimes keep algaes from taking hold. I am also thinking that your cc substrate is still producing a large number of nitrates and that is feeding the algae. What about fish feeding habits? Could this be a contributing factor?
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Old 01-16-2006, 06:52 PM   #7
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You know, what type of algae is a great question.....sometimes it appears as brown dust on the sand (cyano), but lately I started having green and brownish black hair algae on the LR too....this was very disturbing.

As for feeding schedule, I doubt it? See above.

And also, I was afraid you were gonna tell me it was the CC.....I dread changing it all over to sand.

Nitrates are 0!

On a brighter note, it's been 24 hours or so since I manually removed as much as I could, then finished the last treatment of chem-clean and I'm on my second media bag of P04 remover, and so far, the algae hasn't come back......(crossing fingers)
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Old 01-16-2006, 07:33 PM   #8
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cleaning glass once a week is great, Every 2-3 days for me its a green dust on the glass . This is Normal...
HA is not what we want to see. My friend is going through a HA issue now and he has never had it before. All water tests come back 0. These test kits leave a lot of room for error so if it reads 0 does it really mean 0, probably not.
You sound like you have all bases covered and are doing every thing you can. My friends love AZNO3 and I have seen it work on their tanks for HA removal. have you tested your ro/di top off water for PO4, nitrates?
I don't see flow being much of a issue here... Its feeding on something so you need to track down the source.
I have talked with several friends who have had HA and I have been thinking that it maybe the LR releasing some stored up nutrients causing the problem. Just a thought, no scientific proof just thinking out loud.
Good luck ...
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Old 01-17-2006, 11:09 AM   #9
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Have you talked with local reefers or LFS it could just be your water. Are you on a well or municipality? My only other concern may be the carbon try taking it out for a few weeks.
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Old 01-17-2006, 11:31 AM   #10
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I don't believe it's a water problem....LFS doesn't have these issues, pluse the RO/DI and all.....

haven't tried taking out the carbon, that's one I may try...

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algae, long

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