whats a good daily light cycle?

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Aquarium Advice Apprentice
Jan 29, 2006
brick, new jersey
I was just wondering what a healthy daily light cycle would be for a fish only tank with a little bit of LR?what time of day should the lights be turned on and off and how many hours of light a day should be provided?
I have the same question....I just bought a new light from the LFS and they basically told me that for a reef, set it up with 8hrs of Blue Antic and 6 hrs of white, the white coming on in the middle 6 hrs of the blue's 8 hrs run.

In a recent post, it was suggested that 12 hrs of blue and 10hrs of white is acceptable

Is 12hrs of light ok? Should I be worried about algae growth.

I didn't mean to steal this post, I just had a similar questions.

Thanks all

I run my 260w of PC lighting for 11 hrs a day -
1.5 hrs of 'sunrise' actinic, 8 hrs of full spectrum/actinic and 1.5 hrs of 'dusk' actinic.
After that, there's about 3 hrs of blue led 'moonlight' for my viewing pleasure.

So far everything is happy go lucky and my algae growth is not exceeding the capabilities of the cleaners to maintain.

Hope that helps
thanks for the confirmation, thats what I had going on my tanks as well.

One more question, how many hours of light should i use while battling the worst hair algae ive ever seen in my 55g? Im talkin about hair algae growing almost 6in long in the worst spots. what about a blackout? (im currently fighting it with phosphate removers as well)
The general concept is to simulate the natural lighting enviorment. Since our fish are tropical they are in an area of the globe that gets on average 12 hours of light and 12 hours of dark year round. Unlike the US where we can range from 8 hours of light to 14+ hours of light depending on the season.

Lets say you shoot for 10-12 hours of light on your tank. The second thing is that most folks want their tank to be lit in the evenings when people are home to enjoy the tanks. This often results in the tank's light cycle ending at 10-11pm and sometimes 12pm. So we then backtrack the approprate hours of exposure to when the tanks lights should come on. Since this is usually in the middle of the day a cheap on/off timmer from wal-mart or the local home improvement store. This will allow you to have a fixed time cycle with no fuss.

When battling algae its best to approach it by finding the source of the algae vs simply lowering the light exposure as you will in effect never remove the algae from the tank. Figure out why the alage is in the tank and work to remove its food sources above and beyond the light. If your tank is FOWLR than it wont be a problem to keep the lights off for a few days and only have ambient light on the tank.
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