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Old 12-28-2010, 01:40 AM   #1
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Purple People Eater Palythoa with no color

I have a frag of Purple People Eater Palythoa with about eights polyps that are opening and alive, but have no color whatsoever. They are completely clear/white. Below is as much of the info has I have.

1. Type & how long you have had it: Six months and see above
2. Current lighting & Bulb Age: CoralLife t5 bulbs(2) One blue and One white on about 8 hours per day
3. Nitrate: 20-40ppm
4. Calcium: not sure
5. Phosphate: not sure
6. Alkalinity: 180
7. pH: 7.8
8. Salinity: not sure
9. Temperature: 76.0
10. Liquid or strip test kits: strips
11. Location in tank: Was at top third, moved it to lower third tonight
12. Current amount of flow: Hve power head but unsure on flow
13. Current tank dosing regimen: Add Amquel Plus with water changes, also add Kent microvert every three days. Water change every 7 days
14. Nearby coral: N/A
15. Explanation of problem: As seen above, coral has no color at all, but opens and closes and is alive.
I am fairly new to this, so I am working on gaining experise, so any advice you can provide would be great. I have a frog spawn I purchased about four weeks ago, and it seems to be thriving. Tank also has four fish, two clowns, a blue tang and a black and white damsel. Hope this is enough info.
Thanks
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Old 12-28-2010, 02:29 AM   #2
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How long have you had the palythoas (6 months?), and did they *ever* have any color? I've never seen totally bleached palys before... A picture would sure help.

Although I don't think it's the problem, your nitrates are pretty high for a reef tank. That's going to tick corals off in the long run. It might be from that Kent Microvert you're feeding. You might give that stuff a rest for a couple months and see if your water quality improves.

How big of a tank are we talking about?

[Edit: Just noticed the "Salinity: not sure" answer. Hmmmm. "Not sure" isn't a really good answer there. How do you know the salinity of the water you're doing water changes with? No hydrometer or refractometer at all? You're going to want to get something to measure salinity.]
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Old 12-28-2010, 03:22 AM   #3
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30 gallon tank, and I am using water purchased from a reputable aquarium dealer in Dallas. I'm still trying to get the right equipment. Here is a picture.
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Old 12-28-2010, 10:05 AM   #4
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lower them in the tank. too much light is usually the reason corals expel their Zooxanthellae.
i do agree with kurt. you need to know the parameters in the tank. it doesn't matter how reputable the person is you buy your water from, your salinity can and probably is different.
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Old 12-28-2010, 11:37 AM   #5
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Understood on the salinity testing. Since I am still a newbie, a couple of questions:
1.) What type of test kit/testor do you recommend for salinity?
2.) What ppm should be an acceptable level for salinity?
3.) How do I raise/lower salinity? {Water change?)

Also, I have lowered the frag to the bottom third of the tank on top of my live rock. Would it be better to lower it to the sand?

Thanks for your patience and advice.

Trent
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Old 12-28-2010, 04:32 PM   #6
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a salinity refractometer is the best tool for salinity. you can get them on ebay for about 20 bucks plus shipping.
.021-.026 is your target range. .026 being your target for a reef. since you have corals, i would aim for .026
you can raise salinity by simply topping off your evaporation with salted water. you can lower it by removing some salted water and replacing that with fresh water (r.o.d.i. preferred).

what kind of lighting do you have those zoas under trent?
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Old 12-28-2010, 07:08 PM   #7
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I have Coral Life lights that have two T5 bulbs, 1 blue and 1 white. Will the Zoas ever get their color back?
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Old 12-28-2010, 11:15 PM   #8
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a 30 gallon tank with 2 t-5 lamps and you are bleaching zoas? i'm no longer convinced it's the light, but still put them down on the sand bed for a couple weeks and see if that helps. yes, they can get their color back under the right conditions.
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Old 12-28-2010, 11:19 PM   #9
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What else might be the culprit?
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Old 12-28-2010, 11:28 PM   #10
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well, if it was not enough light, i would expect them to turn brown. there are many things that could cause them to decline. zoanthids and palythoa are separate from other corals in that they can bleach from stress.
it could be handling, it could be shipping, less than ideal water conditions....you name it. i guess you'll just have to rule out one thing at a time.
here's some general info-
Reefs.org: Where Reefkeeping Begins on the Internet - Zoanthids by Eric Borneman Aquarium.Net January 1998
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