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Old 01-21-2005, 12:06 PM   #1
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massive green hair algae attack!!!

over the last two months i have had a massive outbreak of green hair algae. I looks like my rocks have grass all over them. I added a lawnmower blenny two weeks ago, but no help. phosphates at zero, nitrates at zero. I only feed once per day, and DT every other day. Nothing has changed in my tank, but the algae is rampant. I have tried siphoning the algae out, but it is attached firmly. I have a minimal clean up crew, with a few hermits and turbos. The only thing I can think of is lighting. I have orbit pc's 4x65W I have had them for about six months...time for new bulbs??? TIA
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Old 01-21-2005, 12:11 PM   #2
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You algae could possibly be consuming the phospates before they get detected on the test kit. Are you using RO/DI water? Do you have a skimmer? What is in your clean up crew and how large is your tank?
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Old 01-21-2005, 12:20 PM   #3
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72 gal tank, skimmer in use, about 1/2cup a week. clean up crew....six turbos, 5 hermits 1 sifter star. water used for top off's tested 0 for phosphates as well.
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Old 01-21-2005, 12:43 PM   #4
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First I would say cut back on feeding the DT's to 2-4 times a month maximum. That can easily pollute your tank w/ an abundance of nutrients. Second, depending what kind of corals you have, cut back your photoperiod some. PC bulbs should last longer than 6 months-I think your ok there, but I'm not familiar w/ orbit fixtures/bulbs. Adding some more snails, and hermits would be a good idea, 6 snails and 5 hermits is definitely on the "low side". Other than that I would say it's time to get your hands wet-start plucking it out lol. HTH
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Old 01-25-2005, 09:00 PM   #5
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My 150gal. had a similar problem with algae that was 1/2" long or better. I added three turbo snails, and within 10 days, they had it all licked off. Maybe you just need a few more snails to clean it up.
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Old 01-26-2005, 08:44 AM   #6
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Here comes my inexperience shining through again... whats "DT?"

Thanks.
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Old 01-26-2005, 09:03 AM   #7
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IMO, way too few hermits and snails for that size tank. I believe I've seen some recommendations that had at least 40 each in a tank your size. Check out some of the cleanup crew recommendations for, say, LiveAquaria.com. Divide that in half and maybe start from there. Adding too many at one time may mean some starve.

Read recently that the scarlett reef hermits do a great job on algae control. And supposed to do a job on red slime algae. Just added a dozen to my tank. Turbos have been given high marks too on algae.

How old is the tank? I think your crew is to few.
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Old 01-26-2005, 09:14 AM   #8
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Ditto that request for info: what is DT? Thanks.
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30 gal standard 55 lbs LR, 60 lb live sand, 10 gal sump/refugium. Urchin skimmer, mag7 pump, 3 x 96W PC combination 10,000K/actinic bulb, 2 blue LED moonlights
SG 1.024, temp 79.5, pH 8.4

Livestock I added:

1 skunk cleaner. 12 hermits: red, scarlet, blue. 15 or so assorted snails. Discosomas, Ricordia, Rhodactis mushroom corals, chaetomorpha (sump), 1 feather duster, Montipora digitata, Montipora capricornis, Montipora hispids. assorted zoos, Xenia, Kenya tree coral, green Sinularia, green star polyps, branching hammer coral, bubble coral, Devil's hand leather. Yellow chromis, purple firefish.

Hitchhikers: the usual suspects :crabs, bristles, urchin, mantis shrimp (now in exile in mantis tank)

List of possible/likely newcomers:

Feather duster. PJ cardinal, Bangghai cardinal, Firefish goby, Clownfish, Neon goby, Yellow watchman goby, Orchid dottyback. Various corals.
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Old 01-26-2005, 09:14 AM   #9
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DTs Live Plankton, good stuff.
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-30# Live Rock
-Mixed Snails (Nassarius // Cerith // Astrea // Black Turbo // Mexican Turbo)
-8x Blue Leg Hermit Crabs // 1x Banded Serpent Star // 1x Cleaner Shrimp
-1x Royal Gramma // 1x Percula Clownfish
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Old 01-26-2005, 09:40 AM   #10
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Check the LFS's fridge. Not the freezer. It's a green liquid in a bottle. At least that's the way I get it.
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Old 02-09-2005, 09:49 PM   #11
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tried all of the above. using ro/di water, used a phosphate spounge. Cut back on photoperiod, added 10 more turbos.feeding DT's thrice a month now. NO CHANGE! don't know what else to do. any other suggestions. do i have to physically remove all the algae in order to get rid of it? please help.


Nitrates, trites and phosphates all zero'd.
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Old 02-10-2005, 01:23 AM   #12
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gallagherjim, I am going through the exact same thing right now in my 1yr old 45g reef. Someone at the lfs suggested the elevated summer temp I had (80-82) may have something to do with it, I am not sure I buy this. I have no measurable nitrates or phosphates and I have been using RO (it tests out <5ppm tds), and I have been running carbon and phosphate sponges and a good skimmer also. I even added a small bunch of Macroalgae to compete with the hair for nutrients. I do need more hermits and turbos (only have a few of each). 2 weeks ago we removed all the rock and scrubbed it and the glass and now it's coming back again. Point is removing it all may not get rid of it for good. If you scrub it off (use a clean plastic scrub brush), then your cleanup crew may be able to control it <I've heard cleanup crews will ignore it if too long>. BTW what is your substrate? Mine is a course coral sand (like a fine crushed coral) which I think may be contributing. I may also have some waste matter built up under the rocks, etc. My powerheads and filter outlets are covered in some hair already...I don' think a better crew is going to help when it's this out of control.

If I can't resolve this soon, I'm considering putting the livestock in QT and removing the rock to a trashcan with no light for a few weeks and changing the subsrate to a finer sand (no crushed coral) and starting clean. I did use tap water for the 1st 3 months so that may be a factor too. My solution would give me new sand and water, clean rock but it will probably recycle to an extent <only drawback>.

This seems like useful information:
http://www.saltyzoo.com/HairAlgae.html
http://www.janetsreef.com/120.htm
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Old 02-10-2005, 03:27 AM   #13
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Hair algea was driving me nuts. I added my powder blue tang, and he had 55 lbs of rock picked clean in the first week. Now, my cleaning crew can keep it under control. More snails and crabs!!!! I have probably 20 of each and would gladly take twice that.

it would be really tough on your live stock to remove it to QT.

Removing rock to a trash can would only be a temporary fix. The route of the problem is still there.
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Old 02-10-2005, 04:19 PM   #14
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Read this link...http://www.janetsreef.com/120.htm
that is what was meant by moving rock to can...I would change the substrate also (which I feel is the problem)
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Old 02-10-2005, 07:34 PM   #15
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I have been taking care of a smaller hair algae problem. The source of my problem was my halide bulb being the wrong temp(too low). I first scraped and syphoned out as much as I could because when it dies it releases nutients into the water that will cause a continuous outbreak. What kind of test kits are you using? Finding the source is key as stated before. I would definately get more snails and crabs to help with future problems. This is a very frustrating problem but with some diligence and patience you can solve it. Good luck
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Old 02-12-2005, 01:54 AM   #16
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Yeah, sorry, I didn't literally mean put them in the trash.

Good Link SRGETZ.

My Tang is like hers, always getting in the way of the camera. It loves to have it's photo taken.
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