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Old 09-09-2013, 04:15 PM   #31
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I just did my first water change yesterday so its all normal and stable.
Tex, I'm going to be blunt with it. Your tank is barely a month old, 90% of people recommend cycling longer than that, your lights are not really "coral" lights, you just added the zoa to an immature tank so you're not going to get the dazzling piece that the store had under what I would assume to be led or MH lighting and in hopefully pristine water, a one month old tank is not stable no matter what, it goes through many many changes for I'd say at least 4-6 months and that's why 6 months is the recommended age to add coral or anemones and some even say to wait a year, lastly your tank is a month old and you just did your first water change? I'm afraid you're getting off to a bad start and I'm not trying offend you I'm just trying to help you protect your investment. Take your time. You cannot build a tank over night. My tank is 3 years old and I'm still working at adding everything I want. You need to be doing WC more often. If you like bigger WC then you need to do a 20-25% every other week minimum or a 10% every week. The aftermath if the tank cycle will leave high nitrates and depending on your feeding habits your phosphates may be high as well and there is your answer for the coral problem. Also you said you don't want algae so your best option to minimize it is to keep those nutrient levels really low by WC
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Old 09-09-2013, 05:21 PM   #32
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my zoa's are like an alkalinity meter in my tank. if my alk drops they close up. When I raise my alk back up they open.

But ya, if you're tanks only a month old it could be anything really, thats a very new tank and things havn't settled yet....
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Old 09-09-2013, 08:16 PM   #33
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Tex, I'm going to be blunt with it. Your tank is barely a month old, 90% of people recommend cycling longer than that, your lights are not really "coral" lights, you just added the zoa to an immature tank so you're not going to get the dazzling piece that the store had under what I would assume to be led or MH lighting and in hopefully pristine water, a one month old tank is not stable no matter what, it goes through many many changes for I'd say at least 4-6 months and that's why 6 months is the recommended age to add coral or anemones and some even say to wait a year, lastly your tank is a month old and you just did your first water change? I'm afraid you're getting off to a bad start and I'm not trying offend you I'm just trying to help you protect your investment. Take your time. You cannot build a tank over night. My tank is 3 years old and I'm still working at adding everything I want. You need to be doing WC more often. If you like bigger WC then you need to do a 20-25% every other week minimum or a 10% every week. The aftermath if the tank cycle will leave high nitrates and depending on your feeding habits your phosphates may be high as well and there is your answer for the coral problem. Also you said you don't want algae so your best option to minimize it is to keep those nutrient levels really low by WC
First I'm not offended at all so don't asssume so, I take constructive criticism well. And as far as the tank age and water change. I was watching my levels closely daily, then every other day, then weekly and I did a small maybe 10% wc during week two because my nitrates were about 10-15ppm and that took them down to almost 0 and i lightly feed for that reason. Maybe 10 little 2mm pellets and none of them make it to the sand bed maybe one or 2 and my skunk shrimp snatch them up. And about the tank age and coral, I returned a bubbler my brother in law got for his fry tank and exchanged it for the coral, figured I take a chance and it worked out so far and I just didn't want them to die, they're doing good. I wad advised by the lrs they should be fine they're a hardy coral so I just figured why not. I don't mean to upset the coral gods but I'm impatient lol and I know I know i have to be patient with saltwater but he paid for the bubbler so technically it was a gift lol jk.
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Old 09-10-2013, 09:09 AM   #34
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There is more than just what you're testing for that corals need monitored. Calcium, magnesium, alkalinity, 1.026 salinity measured preferably by refractometer, phosphates, and also all of the other fish only parameters. Temp swings have to be very very minimal. Top offs have to be perfect to prevent salinity swings. Flow needs to be right. You're doing good learning but a reef tank is a whole different story. It's not hard necessarily just absorbs a lot of time, money and patience. Which is why I got rid of all my corals.
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Old 09-10-2013, 10:07 AM   #35
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There is more than just what you're testing for that corals need monitored. Calcium, magnesium, alkalinity, 1.026 salinity measured preferably by refractometer, phosphates, and also all of the other fish only parameters. Temp swings have to be very very minimal. Top offs have to be perfect to prevent salinity swings. Flow needs to be right. You're doing good learning but a reef tank is a whole different story. It's not hard necessarily just absorbs a lot of time, money and patience. Which is why I got rid of all my corals.
I'm getting better on topoffs I don't let it get to a whole gallon low anymore I top off on Wednesdays and Saturdays now I keep a few gallons of rodi under my stand, snd I know about the extra parameters and I'm gonna get the master saltwater kit you were texting me about with the test tubes for that, and if I'm not mistaken my salinity is around 1.027 last time I checked (kent hydrometer) and my temp never drops below 78* and never over 80* (t5ho fixture on for 6hrs a day) what else am I missing Tim..?
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Old 09-10-2013, 11:33 AM   #36
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I'm getting better on topoffs I don't let it get to a whole gallon low anymore I top off on Wednesdays and Saturdays now I keep a few gallons of rodi under my stand, snd I know about the extra parameters and I'm gonna get the master saltwater kit you were texting me about with the test tubes for that, and if I'm not mistaken my salinity is around 1.027 last time I checked (kent hydrometer) and my temp never drops below 78* and never over 80* (t5ho fixture on for 6hrs a day) what else am I missing Tim..?
Just make sure you get the test kits you need and you should be fine. Salinity is high but with a hydrometer id be even more worried. When i replaced my hydrometer with a new one due to a crack it showed my tank was 1.019 where my old one showed 1.026. I started increasing my salinity at WC and noticed my corals and inverts acted differently in a negative way so i stopped and bought a refractometer. new hydrometer showed 1.022 and the refractometer showed me 1.032 so It was about to be an expensive mistake. BUT people have used swingarms forever but the affordability of a refractometer now is all the more reason to snatch one up. That could be why your Zoas arent opening completely. Have a LFS test it and compare youre SG readings with theirs to be sure. I know you want fish and corals and all that pretty stuff but just make sure your upgrading your equipment to handle the life you are trying to support. Not saying your tank isn't capable, I'm just saying if you aren't skimming you're not puling all of the nasties out of your tank by any means other than WCs so they need to be more frequent. Remember the % of your WC is directly related to the % of nitrates and phosphates etc you remove. So it's easiest in the long run to keep the levels maintained. 10ppm will only drop to 9ppm with a 10% water change. I just want you to be as successful as you can.
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Old 09-10-2013, 11:33 AM   #37
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I'm getting better on topoffs I don't let it get to a whole gallon low anymore I top off on Wednesdays and Saturdays now I keep a few gallons of rodi under my stand, snd I know about the extra parameters and I'm gonna get the master saltwater kit you were texting me about with the test tubes for that, and if I'm not mistaken my salinity is around 1.027 last time I checked (kent hydrometer) and my temp never drops below 78* and never over 80* (t5ho fixture on for 6hrs a day) what else am I missing Tim..?
6 hours a day could be increased. I run my lights for 13 hours for my blues and 10 hours for my whites. This could be it, maybe not a long enough light period?? If everything is good, possibly...
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Old 09-10-2013, 11:36 AM   #38
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6 hours a day could be increased. I run my lights for 13 hours for my blues and 10 hours for my whites. This could be it, maybe not a long enough light period?? If everything is good, possibly...
I run MH for 10hrs a day, Actinic PCs for 2 before and after so 14 hours total and led moonlights for 6 leaving 4 hours of total darkness at night. now without issues of too much light or algae growth. Coraline seems to like the extra light. The anemone not so much but if he ever brings that foot out of the rock to much (fingers crossed) hes as good as gone too.
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Old 09-10-2013, 01:40 PM   #39
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Just make sure you get the test kits you need and you should be fine. Salinity is high but with a hydrometer id be even more worried. When i replaced my hydrometer with a new one due to a crack it showed my tank was 1.019 where my old one showed 1.026. I started increasing my salinity at WC and noticed my corals and inverts acted differently in a negative way so i stopped and bought a refractometer. new hydrometer showed 1.022 and the refractometer showed me 1.032 so It was about to be an expensive mistake. BUT people have used swingarms forever but the affordability of a refractometer now is all the more reason to snatch one up. That could be why your Zoas arent opening completely. Have a LFS test it and compare youre SG readings with theirs to be sure. I know you want fish and corals and all that pretty stuff but just make sure your upgrading your equipment to handle the life you are trying to support. Not saying your tank isn't capable, I'm just saying if you aren't skimming you're not puling all of the nasties out of your tank by any means other than WCs so they need to be more frequent. Remember the % of your WC is directly related to the % of nitrates and phosphates etc you remove. So it's easiest in the long run to keep the levels maintained. 10ppm will only drop to 9ppm with a 10% water change. I just want you to be as successful as you can.
thanks again tim, youve been like a mentor to me other than all the other replies on the forum, and i think ill get a water sample check ny my buddy with a digital refractometer, ill be getting a hob skimmer soon, and i already got my powerheads for circulation, and as far as water chaanged i do a full 5gal buckets full out of a 37gbf tank with all the sand and rock maybe a 25-30gal now so its about a 20-25% water change whic il be doing bi-weekly keep levels low and more consistent

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6 hours a day could be increased. I run my lights for 13 hours for my blues and 10 hours for my whites. This could be it, maybe not a long enough light period?? If everything is good, possibly...
im thinking of extending it to a 10hr like 2hr blue before and after and white and blue for 6hrs, maybe ill see a slight change, ill have to see i just got a good timer yesterday so ill be programming it today

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I run MH for 10hrs a day, Actinic PCs for 2 before and after so 14 hours total and led moonlights for 6 leaving 4 hours of total darkness at night. now without issues of too much light or algae growth. Coraline seems to like the extra light. The anemone not so much but if he ever brings that foot out of the rock to much (fingers crossed) hes as good as gone too.
and thats what im worried about an algae breakout of something of the sort, ive seen some horrible looking tanks covered in hair and all kinds of algae and coraline on the rocks, sand, glass, equipment, everything! and im terrified of that, you know me tim i have a cleanliness problem lol
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Old 09-10-2013, 03:51 PM   #40
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I hear you man. You're the first person I've seen that actually wants to listen. I don't expect you to follow every single rule and guideline. I know i dont. just trying to set you up for the best success you can have. You may already know it but Keeping your bulbs replaced every 6-9 months will help with algae growth too. Skimmer will also help and running a UV sterilizer will also make a difference although i only run mine for a few hours a week. You're doing a good job but my advice is keep at least one slot open for a new fish for a while. It never fails as soon as i "fill" my tank to my comfort level. I see another fish i want. The only problem about my 210 is it can have so many fish in it that its hard to keep everyone in the tank from fighting and compatability is crutial.
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