I've been patiently waiting for weeks now, and it appears my cycle has run it's course.
Water stats -
was 1.024 - added a slight amount of ro
to bring it back to 1.023
8.0 (how do I raise this slightly? baking soda mix?)
on the high side
(I hate the inaccuracy of these tests, but that's what they all appear to be to my eyes)
I havn't run calcium, magnesium or iodine tests yet (they are due to arrive in the next few days).
Prior to this -
100lbs of live rock added, properly scrubbed etc.
4" sand bed
Skimmer running 24/7
12hr light cycle
temp constant in the 78 range, warmer during the day, cooler at night (using an aquatronics controller to SLIGHTLY vary the temperature)
has been pretty much constant at 1.023
started at 'normal' and has risen to the lower end of high
has remained constant at ~8+ (.1 varience above 8 at times)
ammonia started at around .25, rose to .5 for a few days then backed down to .25 until today's test
nitrites 'spiked' at .2
nitrates 'spiked' to the 5-10 range
Brown algae (diatoms?) have been somewhat prevalent this past week, with die off occuring now (bubbles coming from it).
So now what?
Clean the brown crap up as much as possible without disturbing the sand, do a 50% water change, monitor for a few days then add some livestock?
Also, I've noticed various forms of life emerging from the rocks, fan worm type things..but yesterday I noticed something I am wondering if it is aptasia.
It's absolutely tiny.. no way I can get my camera to focus on it..
The part you can see best is about the size of a small speck of lint..
It's white, appears to be connected to the rock with a stem of sorts, and has tendrils coming from the 'speck' that are waving in the current...fairly transparent and not shocked by flashbulbs or flashlights.
<shrug> figured I'd ask while I was posting.
Thanks as always.
Oh and happy new year!