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Old 12-14-2006, 04:40 PM   #1
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Scrubbing Rocks and Bubbles

Couple of questions for you guys!!

My Christmas present from my husband this year is a protein skimmer (think I'm gonna go with a Prizm) and live rock. I have a 20 high tank. Before I put the new rock in I want to try and take care of these problems:

-I have a hair algea problem. Not too bad, but I need to get it off of my rocks. How do I scrub this off?? I mean, do I do it in a bucket of saltwater and just take a brush to the rock?? How do I do this without killing the little guys that are living on it (like feather dusters and such)??

-I have bubbles all over the place pretty bad. They seem to be coming up from under the sand. I can see that my sand is full of air pockets where it hits the glass. I have taken my finger and dug through it once or twice letting all the air escape, but it just comes back a couple of days later. What could be causing it??

Thanks everyone!!

-Laura
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Old 12-14-2006, 04:48 PM   #2
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1. Hair algea is from excess nutrience, you could reduce feeding, lighting and using RO/DI or distilled water.
What/how much/how often are you feeding?
How long do you run your lights?
How old are they?
What does your source water test, especially in nitrAtes/phosphates?
What are your tank's water parameters?
2. It could be a few things.
How old is your tank?
Did you add your sand first and then your water?
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Old 12-14-2006, 05:12 PM   #3
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Re: Scrubbing Rocks and Bubbles

Quote:
Originally Posted by ferretmath

How do I scrub this off?? I mean, do I do it in a bucket of saltwater and just take a brush to the rock?? How do I do this without killing the little guys that are living on it (like feather dusters and such)??
That is one way Laura. Another way is to take a tooth brush and rubberband it to your siphon hose and gently scrub your rock during a PWC. This will draw out alot of the hair algea but this is only a bandaid solution. You`ll need to find out what is fueling this algea. To find out you`ll need to answer alot of those questions that Scott asked. If not then you`ll just keep on dealing with this nuisance algea.
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Old 12-14-2006, 05:40 PM   #4
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The AquaC Remora is only around $60 more then a Prizm and is much better. The Prizm is decent and it's only a 20 gal tank but if you ever decide to upgrade the Remora can handle tanks up to 55 gal.

Your 2 pincushion urchins aren't knocking the algae out? Did you ever add that extra ph to get more circulation?

Bubbles coming from the sand/and or lr is usually a good sign that nitrogen gas is escaping which is the end result of the nitrogen cycle after no3 and considering your tank is about 10 months old it probably developed anaerobic bacteria.

It's not a ton of them I assume and it's just a couple here and there every once in a while.

What's your no3/po4 level at?
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Old 12-14-2006, 05:50 PM   #5
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My pincushion will mow down hair algae, if he runs accross it. I think my peppermints might be nibbling at it, where they hang out, anyone ever hear of that?
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Old 12-14-2006, 07:52 PM   #6
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-I am doing a 5 gallon water change once a week using RO/DI saltwater that I buy from Big Al's. I have never run any tests on their water before - I will when I pick some up this weekend.

-I feed every other day. One feeding is frozen brine shrimp - then the next feeding is Spectrum pellets. I only feed as much as they will eat.

-I run my lights on average about 8 hours a day. The lights are about 2 months old.

-My tank was set up this past Feb - makes it 10 months old.

-If I remember correctly I added sand first.

-I just ran out of test strips - but last time I checked it (last week) No2 and No3 were at 0 and Ph was at 8.0.......I'm getting more strips this weekend.

-The urchins did a real good job of mowing the lawn - but they have for some reason become lazy lately. My lawnmower blenny scrapes at the algae, but prefers eating the shrimp (weirdo).

-Yes, I have added another powerhead, but it is pointed up to the surface so that it will break up the yucky stuff. Hopefully the skimmer will take care of this and I can repurpose the new powerhead.

-I think I need to pick up a phosphate test kit this weekend as well......
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Old 12-14-2006, 09:50 PM   #7
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http://www.fantasyreef.com/showthread.php?t=478

Here is some more facts on algea.
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Old 12-15-2006, 09:21 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ferretmath
-I just ran out of test strips - but last time I checked it (last week) No2 and No3 were at 0 and Ph was at 8.0.......I'm getting more strips this weekend.
The strips usually aren't very accurate. AP has a new Reef Master Liquid Test Kit which has Nitrate, phosphate, calcium, & carbonate hardness liquid tests that are accurate.

Testing for nh3/no2/ph is still important but can be done less frequently in an established tank.
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Old 12-17-2006, 03:31 PM   #9
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OK - new test kit.....

NO3 - 0
NO2 - 0
Ph - 8.1
PO4 - 0.1 (in tank and source water, as well)

Hmmm........is the PO4 level really high?? What else could I do to lower it??

As for the hair algea, I am going to scrub the rocks today while I do my water change. I am also going to get a timer so that I can shorten the length of time that my lights are on. Maybe down to 5 hours a day......

Oh, LFS guy said that I should think about putting more hermits in the tank.....I only have 2 - how many would be good for a 20 gallon??

What do ya think??

-Laura
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Old 12-17-2006, 03:44 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ferretmath
I am also going to get a timer so that I can shorten the length of time that my lights are on. Maybe down to 5 hours a day......
This is an excellent idea. It would not hurt to actually go a day or two under blackout conditions to help get rid of this stuff. Of course this will help to erase the hair algea problem you have now but unless we find out what is fueling this algea then it will come back. Make sure you go over that checklist I gave you a few post ago.
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