Discussion in 'Algae' started by Matt Rogers, Nov 18, 2009.
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I wasn't clear in an earlier post so I want to address that first. The reason Morgan couldn't sell the ATS is due to some misbehavior by Walter Adey.....not because they don't have value.
I did not read the thread but I have experience with pretty much every type of filtration ever put on a reef tank, including ATS. No filtration method is perfect. The same porousness of the thallus that allows algae to absorb nutrients allows them to "leak" right back out too. Is there a net gain? Sure. There is going to be less Nitrates, phosphorus, Iron, and Iodine in a system using algae. In some circumstances, it might be necessary to dose Iron and or Iodine to keep the algae growing. There's also the risk of crashes which releases all sorts of nasties into ones system all at once. I prefer highly powered protein skimmers but even things can go wrong with those.....you can forget to empty them and they can overflow into your sump. There's more than one way to skin a cat. The important thing is to understand your system. You have a preferred way to filter your water, and I have my own.
There can be ill effects. Now I don't know what turf algae you're using but I would assume Derbesia sp. Well, that has a lot less secondary metabolites than say, Caulerpa. They also have a reproduction method called fragmentation and if you're not careful when scraping, you can end up with fragments in your display tank that are just as happy growing there as they would be in one's ATS where you would want them. That would be a reason IMO to have a potent UV sterilizer plumbed after the ATS and before the display tank. One of the things I like the least about ATS is the amount of Gelbstoff (phenols and tannins that turn the water yellow) that the algaes are going to release. Again, there's an easy fix for this....run a quality carbon and change it on a regular basis.
Ok this skinned cat method has me interested Curt... how does that work I don't think my DVM sister would approve though
Finally some one that thinks most systems have their own merit. ATS work, as do skimmers. Would I relay on just an ATS, nope, but that is my preference and you may find the ATS running skimmer less works for you So many variables in this hobby, it's wonderful.
Yeah, I give an occasional squirt of iron/manganese. I don't have derbesia... it's "turf" algae.. the red brown matt algae. Most scrubbers will grow green hair for the start and get turf later on(both work, turf is far more powerful) .. I got lucky with turf algae right away. It's the type inland aquatics sells.
I know you heavy weights around here know but for folks reading about scrubbers...
When people say protein skimmers remove nitrate they're referring to how it removes particles before they are broken down into Nitrate and phosphate. After that a protein skimmer can't remove these things from the water. You still need some sort of nutrient export such as a refugium, scrubber, carbon(vodka/sugar) dosing, GFO, ect.
I keep my skimmer going to contribute to the overall decrease and keeps the water clearer.
Thanks for making that more clear
The new scrubber FAQ that was just posted will help clear up some of this:
Algae Scrubbers • View topic - ALGAE SCRUBBER FAQ (12/17/09)
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