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Old 02-13-2005, 12:09 AM   #1
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Vacuming Sand

OK, we are getting really desperate with the amount of algae in the tank! First it was brown, then it turned a maroonish color. Now it is just green and it is all over. We have tried everything.

We are doing water changes very frequently. All the water parameters are very good. All the livestock are fine. It is just so ugly to look at. We clean the glass with the magnet and it is back the next day. It is all over the sand and the live rock.

Now that it has turned green we notice it is started to roll up in the sand. Almost looks like a tostado (the skinny mexican eggrolls

We decided to buy a vacuum and see if we can get any of it up. The only vacuum we could find was made to be a gravel vacuum. Well, not only was it too weak to pick up any of the pieces of algae, but it sucked out 5 gallons of water in minutes.

Then we decided to go at it with our fish net. This worked semi-OK as we attempted to pick up the large rolled pieces of sand/algae but what a mess we had when we were just 1/4 way across the tank. The sand is totally stirred up. (is this bad for the fish?) Plus we removed a good portion of sand in the process.

Is there a better way? We are nearing the end of our patience.

DJ
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Old 02-13-2005, 05:12 AM   #2
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Re: Vacuming Sand

just curious... did you start the tank with RO/DI? did u add tap water at any point?
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Old 02-13-2005, 09:03 AM   #3
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Can you give us your parameters for nitrate and phosphates? The algae is thriving for a reason and we need to find the reason before we can tell you how to battle it. As suggested already, what type of water are you using? Tap or RO? That can make a difference. Some tap water (like mine) has impurities in it that these algae will thrive off of and can't be removed with just a dechlorinator. Manual removal is an option but a pain and I'm sure it can be gotten rid of without going through that. Also, What is your light cycle and how often are you feeding?

Oh, and the sand storm will not hurt your fish. No worries there.
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Old 02-13-2005, 10:06 AM   #4
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I used a hose similar to the one that comes with the medium sized gravel vac. I sucked up the algea in to a bucket with a knee high tied to the end of the hose, then had a pump pumping the water into my sump so I was replacing the water as fast as it was being taken out. The knee high worked great as a filter to trap most of the algea. Did have to throw it away after I was done, it actually developed holes in it close to the top. I've been fighting cyno for a couple of weeks and when it started to receed I jumped onto it with the hose idea. HTH.
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Old 02-13-2005, 10:48 AM   #5
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Sounds like my tank....I am going along for the ride!

I have similar problems...and I use RO/DI Water. I know exactly what you are taking about regarding the "tostado formation", I have them also.

I also have a HUGE a hair alage problem. My nitrates are 10, and Phosphates are 0.5ppm for some reason (the RO/DI water tests 0ppm), so I have not idea where the phosphate is coming from. I have a very small cleaning crew....so I think that is part of my problem.

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Old 02-13-2005, 10:57 AM   #6
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Perhaps it's the type of food you are feeding. Some are higher in phosphates then others. Also, if you feeding frozen food, be sure to drain the water off before adding it to your tank.

I like Geralds filter/vac suggestion. I've also read that others vacuum it using airline tubing so your not taking out massive volumes of water.
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Old 02-13-2005, 11:03 AM   #7
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Quote:
Perhaps it's the type of food you are feeding
My problem...I only have live rock and some snails and hermits...and I haven't put any food in thank tank at all yet.

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Old 02-13-2005, 11:30 AM   #8
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WC, if you have no fish in the tank, and aren't feeding it, what are you doing to keep the tank cycled? I don't know what else to suggest for your algae issues. Hopefully someone else will come by with more suggestions.

If you think it's green cyano, you could try aiming a ph in that area. Sometimes that helps. But, that's not gonna help with the hair aglae.
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Old 02-13-2005, 04:07 PM   #9
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I am in the same boat as you are. I can't keep it outa my tank. I have no clue myself.
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Old 02-13-2005, 05:11 PM   #10
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hey

Hey, i recently had an algae prob and its gone now. I just had to cut the lights down to about 10-12 hours a day, and get rid of all of the algae you can. Use one of those cheap gravel cleaners with the big tube at the end and a little tube that goes into the bucket. Suck on the end that goes into the bucket, and when the siphon gets going put it in the sand alittle. When the sand gets into the little tube, tweak it. So the sand doesnt go into the bucket.
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