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Old 05-04-2008, 02:07 PM   #1
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GreenAlgae Problem

I have my 20 gallon now for two months. I just returned my damselfish for store credit and bought some live rock. I know, I know...I did things backwards. Anyway, my problem is with algae. It's gowing profusely all over the live sand and the glass of the aquarium. It's dark green and grows in a matter of one day! I try stirring it and burying it, but it grows back fully in 24 hours. No idea if this is normal or if there is something wrong.
Also, I've added some ornaments (fake plants, a sculpture) to the tank. Do those have to be cleaned when I do water changes? How do I keep algae off the ornaments?
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Old 05-04-2008, 02:48 PM   #2
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Clueless, I am going to split this into it's own thread, called Green Algae Problem
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Old 05-04-2008, 02:53 PM   #3
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What are your water parameters?
How much/often/what are you feeding?
How long do you run your lights?
Do you have a filter with foam?
Yes, I would clean your ornaments.
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Old 05-04-2008, 03:01 PM   #4
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I have a confession which will make everyone hate me. I haven't tested my water in two whole weeks because I went away on buisness and got lazy.....BUT....my last measures from 4/24 were
Ammonia .25
Alk - normal
NitrIte 10
NitrAte .2
pH 7.8
Spec Grav - fine
Temp 80 degrees
Single bulb / I leave the light on for 12 hours per day
20 gallon tank 60 days into cycle
I returned my damsel today and added 8 lbs of live rock after the pet store guy tested my sample and said it was okay to proceed. (Eeesh!)
Anyway, this sounds like I overfed my damsel and it ALSO sounds like I need to cycle all over again
How do I kill this algae which is carpeting my live sand?
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Old 05-04-2008, 03:17 PM   #5
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whats your phosphate at?
you should get your ph up higher is low and you should get your nirite and nitrate and ammonia done to 0 vac the sand dont just stir it up then whatch your parameters
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Old 05-04-2008, 03:25 PM   #6
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This is what my tank looks like...see the algae? That's 3 hours after I cleared it out!!!!
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Old 05-04-2008, 04:16 PM   #7
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Was the LR fully cured? If not, or if it was out of water for any length of time it could have caused the start of a new mini-cycle. I would do a 20% PWC and vaccum the sand bed at that time. Please test your water parameters before the PWC and again the day after the PWC to see where things stand.

What is the SG reading and what are you using to get that reading?
Are you using RODI water, treated tap, or something else for both top off and PWCs?

That single bulb light is what kind of light? Normal output, PC, T5, MH?

Kill the light for now. There's nothing in the tank that requires light from what I can see.
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Old 05-04-2008, 09:23 PM   #8
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I will do chemical tests tonight.
Killing the light sounds like good advice. I'll leave it off from now on. I thought the LR might need it.
The LR is cured, and there is no fish in there right now.
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Old 05-04-2008, 10:51 PM   #9
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FantasyReef Databases-Viewing item "10 Step Plan for Nuisance Algae Control"

Try this plan out
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Old 05-04-2008, 11:39 PM   #10
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If it's reappearing that quick, I'm guessing its cyanobacteria. Excess nutrients (nitrates and phosphates) and excess lighting will just fuel it. Don't stir it or try to bury it - just siphon it out with some of the sand. It'll come back, but stirring it up just makes things worse. Work on the list that melosu58 linked to and you'll probably get over it.

Just another comment about the tank picture - you can take that air intake tube off your powerhead. All it's doing is creating a bunch of microbubbles in your tank which aren't really helping with aeration. In SW, most of the aeration occurs at the surface of the tank, and in a skimmer. That's why its important to have good surface "ripple."

Watch your ammonia and nitrite and don't add anything live until both those go back to zero. You might see a little mini cycle after adding the rock.

PS... Also looks like you're going to want some additional flow in there. Is it just that single powerhead right now, pointing up? You'll probably want a couple additional powerheads on each end, in the back corners, pointing diagonal across the tank making kind of an "x". The additional flow should help from getting dead spots in your tank where cyano likes to set up camp.
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