Desperate For Help

Discussion in 'Algae' started by YellowBelly, Jul 27, 2015.

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  1. YellowBelly

    YellowBelly Corkscrew Tentacle Anemone

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    Hello,
    It has been awhile since my last post on this forum but I am on my third tank and this time running the full ZEOvit system. I have a 120 gallon display with a corner overflow. The filtration is in a 30 gallon breeder with a filter sock, ATI PowerCone IS-250 protein skimmer and Vertex RX-Z 1.5 Liter ZEOvit reactor with about 750 mL of ZEOliths. I do run ROX 0.8 carbon and GFO in separate mesh bags in the sump. I also dose lanthanum chloride as needed to lower PO4. I have a Jebao DC 6000 return pump and one Jebao RW-15 powerhead in the display. I originally dried the live rock out for three days and re-cured it for the 14 day initial ZEO cycle with no major issues. The tank has been up and running for 5 months now and the live rocks are completely covered with long strains of green hair algae and now I am beginning to have cyanobacteria growth on the sand bed. I have mix of Tonga, Pukani and Kaelini live rock which is about 100 pounds and 60 pounds of Tropic Eden Reefflakes sand. I was following the ZEO dosing schedule to the T until I started seeing the algae take over and now I have backed off to basically dosing only bacteria. I was dosing ZEObak, ZEOstart3, ZEOfood7, Sponge Power and KZ Coral Snow. I have also tried ZEOzym and mixing up the bacteria sources by using Microbacter7 and Special Blend. I have an assortment of Turbo Snails, Cerith Snails, Queen Conch, Blue Leg Hermit Crabs and now even a Sea Hare to rid the hair algae but nothing will touch it. I have three fairy wrasse's, one tailspot blenny, and two anthias in the tank. Maybe a tang would eat the algae? I feed frozen food twice a week but the fish mostly eat pellet food once or twice a day. I was thinking maybe the live rock is leaching out nutrients which is why only the rocks have green hair algae and not the overflow or glass/substrate. I try to stick with performing 30 gallon water changes with Tropic Marin Pro Reef sea salt and I do use a automatic doser to balance my alkalinity and calcium. My current parameters are as follows:

    Salinity: 1.025 (33 ppt)
    pH: 8.1
    Alkalinity: 8 dKH
    Calcium: 420
    Magnesium: 1380
    Potassium: 380
    Nitrate: 2.5
    Phosphate: 0.05 ppm

    I have stopped dosing ZEOstart3 because I do register nitrates when I test and I don't want to fuel my algae bloom further. I currently run two 250 watt Phoenix 14K metal halides for 5 hours a day (3 month old bulbs) and two 54 watt ATI Pure Actinic T5's for 9 hours a day (3 months old). The first day I added the Sea Hare it ate a good amount of the algae on one portion of live rock but ever since it only hides during the day or berries under the sand, I haven't seen it eat anything. From the lack of ZEO dosing and lowering my nutrients I do seen a lightening in my SPS corals and they seem to really be suffering from all of this, not only from the lack of additives but also the algae stressing the bases of the corals. I try to brush as much of the algae off with a toothbrush but it grows back in two days. I even tried leaving the tank dark for three days but it did not kill the green hair algae just the cyano. Maybe the rocks will take a full year before they are gone leaching into the water column fueling the hair algae? Please help me as I am almost ready to give up out of frustration.
     
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  3. Vinnyboombatz

    Vinnyboombatz Giant Squid

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  4. YellowBelly

    YellowBelly Corkscrew Tentacle Anemone

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    I will take a picture but unfortunately it is green hair algae.
     
  5. oldfishkeeper

    oldfishkeeper Giant Squid

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    I'm following because I had a pretty big increase in hair algae while away on vacation :( Other than what you are doing, I'm not sure what to recommend. I might reduce your lighting schedule - do you use any phosphate reducer? - like phosguard or GFO? Perhaps it's part of the zeo system, I'm not familiar with that system at all.
     
  6. Va Reef

    Va Reef Giant Squid

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    Not sure how peroxide would work with all that zeo, but dosing peroxide (or even spot treating) will get rid of hair algae.
     
  7. YellowBelly

    YellowBelly Corkscrew Tentacle Anemone

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    I am running GFO passively in a mesh bag along with ROX 0.8 carbon and I dose lanthanum chloride, my phosphates read 0.05ppm with a Hanna Checker. I should reduce my lighting for the cyano. I did three days of darkness and the cyano went away but I saw no decrease in green algae growth. I did decrease my lighting from 7 hours metal halides to 5 hours and 11 hours T5's to 9 hours. The guys on the ZEOVIT forum are telling me to keep dosing the ZEO products but that will only fuel the algae. I think it is bound nutrients in the live rock. I did a poor job "cleaning" them. The rocks I have had for 5 years and we're covered with life, sponges, corals, etc. When my tank cracked the corals were cut off the rocks and transferred to my frag tank. During that transition period the rocks dried out for three days before the new tank arrived and started the cycling process all over with 60 pounds of fresh reefflakes sand. I never did scrub the rocks with a toothbrush to get rid of all the old organisms living on the rocks like I probably should have done. Now 4 months later it came back to haunt me.
     
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  9. Corailline

    Corailline Super Moderator Staff Member

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    It is a dry heat, yeah right !
    You're an expert in sps imo, so I know you've ruled out all the usual suspects.

    Maybe the corals are pale for different reason. The algae issue could be unrelated.

    You've checked for RB and other nasties on the corals?

    You used this rock before in a previous tank? I am not a big fan of the leaching theory but this does not seem like a run of the mill issue with the algae.

    NVM, lol I see where the rock was dried but not rinsed. When I remove rock from my tank it has hundreds of brittle stars, stomatella, algae, some sponge, there is no way there is not going to be a significant amount of die off. jm2c
     
  10. YellowBelly

    YellowBelly Corkscrew Tentacle Anemone

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    I did see a few crawl out during the drying phase and most of the dead floating ones were siphoned out during the cycle but I am sure there are quite a few stuck in the rocks. Stupid me!
     
  11. Billme

    Billme Eyelash Blennie

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    My guess on the leaching phosphates is that the initial die off is the biggest concern. After a couple weeks in water all of the chemical breakdown of dead organisms will have occurred. What's left are phosphates and nitrates. With adequate flow, those should be in the water column ready to be removed. Leaching is the result of layers of phosphates (and whatever else) having been precipitated along with Ca and carbonate. That would only happen if your system had too high of Ca & Carb causing precipitation. Then for these to get back into the water column, it would take a very low pH. Other than that, the phosphates are part of the rock.
    How's that for making a short answer into a long one?
     
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  12. YellowBelly

    YellowBelly Corkscrew Tentacle Anemone

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    Please be gentle with the replies to the pictures :(

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