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Old 01-18-2010, 05:43 PM   #1
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CUC not enough?

Mixed input from LFS and other sources about the size of a clean up crew.

My 55 reef tank I've been fighting to some degree a red algae (some say it's cyano, other say it's red turf algae, it looks like green hair algae but is shorter and is red) for 6 months. If I pick it off as much as possible during PWC it helps but I can't get rid of it.
My ammonia is 0, nitrites 0, nitrates about 20 or slightly less.

The LFS said my CUC is too small, consists of a sand sifting star, serpent star, 8 snails (not sure what kind, cone shells), and 3 or 4 blue leg hermits. The LFS convinced me I needed a dozen scarlet hermits and they would take care of it. I'm a month later and still in the same boat, just have a dozen scarlet hermits in the mix now.

Stock I have a yellow tang, 2 clowns, 2 striped eel catfish, 1 red shrimp. I feed 1 frozen mysis cube a day and the tang gets a little dried algae too.

PWC are 10% each week with 1 30% change a month. Is this not enough or is my CUC not enough? Do I need a couple 50% changes in consecutive weeks?

I want to solve the problem not fix it temporarily.

I'm considering a HOB refugium if I can't get this problem solved.

I read the documentation on this site and tried everything other than keeping the lights out for a couple days to starve it out. I have some corals and didn't know if that would harm them as much as it would harm the algae?

My PC lights are on about 7 hours a day and the bulbs have been replaced during this process.

Not sure what to try next but am tired of watching the red hairy algae creep across the rocks.

EDIT: I also use RODI water

thanks
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Old 01-18-2010, 06:03 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smnw10 View Post
I want to solve the problem not fix it temporarily.
That is a very smart statement. You are alot smarter than your LFS who thinks that spending money on livestock will take care of the prolem. You are correct in thinking let`s find out what`s fueling the algea. Here is a good checklist to find out. BTW you might need to find another LFS. Livestock is not the answer.

FantasyReef Databases-Viewing item "10 Step Plan for Nuisance Algae Control"
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Old 01-18-2010, 06:21 PM   #3
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thanks for the checklist. I'll start with larger PWCs and probably some more snails as I'm putting in my order for my new tank with reefcleaners.org

Will keeping my lights off for an extended period of time to starve the algae also harm my soft corals?

I'd like a new LFS but it's the only one in Kansas City that does saltwater that isn't a big chain.
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Old 01-18-2010, 06:59 PM   #4
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I know most are down in hermits but my hermits do much more work than my snail population. I'll sacrifice the snail here and there (ok more than that but hey) for my hungry hermits. I had some bubble algae on top of a powerhead w/ the hair algae there too.. Next thing I know one of my hermits was up on top and mowed it all down. Smooth as silk.

I love my hermies... I really really do.... Bwaaaaaaaaaaa..... sob sob....
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Old 01-18-2010, 09:05 PM   #5
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I love my hermies... I really really do.... Bwaaaaaaaaaaa..... sob sob....
There there Capt.
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