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Old 06-01-2009, 10:51 PM   #1
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Question algae and diatoms?

So Ive had this tank for about a month now. It is already cycled do to the fact that everything in it came from other aquariums. My readings are:
NO3 = 20ppm
NO2 = 0
KH = 250ppm
pH = 8.4
ammonia= 0.2ppm

My problem is my LR is covered in coraline but now it is being taken over by a green algae and my sand is starting a growth of brown spots that I think are diatoms. The sand is the only thing that did not come from a mature tank. I purchased a sleeper goby and he seems to enjoy the "diatoms" but the green algae I'm not sure about.

Any thoughts on what the green algae is and what to do about it
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Old 06-02-2009, 12:03 AM   #2
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I have had two outbreaks of brown diatoms in my sand and my tank has been set up for six months. From what I have heard and read it is normal for a newly established tank. I found that fewer feedings and less time with the lights on helped it go away on it's own. Try that and see if the brown diatoms go away. The green algae I'm not so sure about.
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Old 06-02-2009, 12:39 AM   #3
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Your nitrate reading is on the high side. Do a PWC, followed by another one a few days later and that should bring that down and slow your Green algae and diatom growth. As stated above, cut the lights down, limit feedings and with the PWC you should be good to go.
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Old 06-02-2009, 01:58 PM   #4
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OK, I did a 25% water change today and will do another in a couple of days. Hopefully that will help. I turned the lights off all day today.
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Old 06-02-2009, 02:25 PM   #5
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Just so you know, there are some in the saltwater field that would die for a 20ppm nitrate reading. Your diatoms are a normal part of a new tank and use silica (often found in tapwater and common non-argonite sand ; play sand/pool sand/etc) They'll die out on their own. What kind of sand did you use? Tap or Ro/DI water?

regarding the algae, the nitrates don't help however the other contributing factors would be a) any direct/indirect sunlight hitting the tank? How long do you have the lights on? How old are the lamps?

FWIW: a lot of us go through algae spurts in the summer months due to the intensity of the sun changing, the direction of the sun and the duration of the day changing. With the increase in the ambient temperature of municipal water sources the water company will begin to adjust the treatment process to keep the water supply within acceptable parameters. This could mean adding things that adversely affect your tank (assuming you use tapwater).
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Old 06-02-2009, 07:17 PM   #6
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Aragonite sand but i do use tap water, lights are a week old I just changed to more suitible lighting for reefs
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Old 06-02-2009, 07:26 PM   #7
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The change in lights may be contributory. You're likely getting nitrates, phosphates and silica from your tap water. Nitrates and Phosphates are food for your algae. Combine that with light (new/sun/too much) and you have what it takes to grow algae.

If you get your tap tested at least you'll know how much you are adding during water changes.
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Old 06-02-2009, 08:06 PM   #8
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There is also a window in the room that has direct sunlight shining through curtains just before dusk so I have covered it with a more "permenant" thick curtain and I tested my tap water everything is good but I don't have anything to test for phosphates or silica. I appreciate all the help.
I feed my fish twice a day can i get by with maybe every other day
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Old 06-02-2009, 08:07 PM   #9
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Feeding: Easily

What were the readings of your tapwater? Not sure what 'good' is
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Old 06-02-2009, 08:35 PM   #10
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NO3 = 0
NO2 = 0
KH = 40ppm
pH = 7.0
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