I know I'm 'supposed' to replace PC
's every 12 months max...but I thought I could squeeze more life outta them...especially since FW
plant geeks used to say to replace PC
bulbs on planted tanks annually too, but that turned out to be un-necessary. In FW
plants, the degradation of spectrum in PC
isn't enough to bother plants...they still get enough red and blue peaks to grow happy.
From what I'm guessing, marine inverts mainly need blue peaks, hence the use of actinics and 10,000K temps.
Well I won't lie, my bulbs were purchased and used since July of 2004, 14 months of 12 hour daily use. I figured I'd push these bulbs past 1 year, until I saw a reason to change them...see if I could maybe disprove the same myth for the marine people.
Lately, I'm seeing lots more algae on the glass...very thin 'dust' algae that wipes right off. Several pieces of live rock are sprouting very bushy green algae clumps, that I can pull off for the most part...some golf ball sized (I wanted to see if it grew into any specific shape...nope)
Now I'm gettin weird fuzzy brown algae on equipment parts, and my coralline has been peeling off half the back wall of the glass tank.
My mushroom and yellow polyp colonies look ok but my button polyps are starting to look bleached in a few spots, and some of them are losing, or keeping retracted, the little hairlike tentacles at the tips of the button.
Nitrates and phosphates are undetectable. calcium and alkalinity both within a range to keep happy coralline. temp fairly stable thanks to a fan.
Its my bulbs, isn't it? Too old to provide enough usable spectrum, so now things go downhill, right?