Diatom bloom on a one year old reef tank

Discussion in 'Algae' started by dlandino, Feb 19, 2009.

to remove this notice and enjoy 3reef content with less ads. 3reef membership is free.

  1. dlandino

    dlandino Astrea Snail

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2009
    Messages:
    28
    Location:
    Clinton, CT 06413
    Hi all, I have a diatom bloom going on right now and it is driving me crazy. It is showing up on all of my equipment in high flow areas and is not on the rocks or coral. I think I can narrow the cause down to a spent DI resin in my ro/di system and silicates have caused the issue. I have replaced my ro/di filters and perform weekly water changes never missing one in a little over a year. Does anyone know how long this outbreak will last? Thanks in advance.
     
  2. Click Here!

  3. PackLeader

    PackLeader Giant Squid

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2008
    Messages:
    5,716
    Location:
    Reno, NV
    Until the nutrients are used up. Sorry but I couldn't really give you a better answer than that.
     
  4. dlandino

    dlandino Astrea Snail

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2009
    Messages:
    28
    Location:
    Clinton, CT 06413
    No need to apologize I understand. I think I am looking for a miracle response, like, oh just go and do this and it will be gone. I know that is impossible ;-)
     
  5. johnmaloney

    johnmaloney 3reef Sponsor

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2007
    Messages:
    2,256
    funny how they can come and go. I know a guy that after 3 years of reefing he still gets diatom blooms. Still have nailed down the source of bio available silica yet in his tank. Add anything new to yours to cause it?
     
  6. dlandino

    dlandino Astrea Snail

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2009
    Messages:
    28
    Location:
    Clinton, CT 06413
    Nothing new was placed in the tank at all. I can only make some guesses. I thought it may have been that my ro/di filters needed to be replaced, so I have done that and am now on my second water change with the new filters. I see some improvement. The only other thing that I did was when I made water 3 changes ago I ran the water into a 5 gallon Poland Spring water cooler type container. I guess this could have been the cause but the container was clean and dry when I used it. So, I have stopped using this as well. Now, thinking a bit more I did have a power head slightly askew and over the course of a few days it moved the sand in my tank from front to back. It did this very slowly because I didn't notice it happening until there was little sand in the front and much in the back. I guess this could have stirred the sand bed enough to cause a problem but I am not sure that sand disturbance could cause diatoms. So there were a few culprits I guess.
     
  7. johnmaloney

    johnmaloney 3reef Sponsor

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2007
    Messages:
    2,256
    hard to tell, usually new plastic has bio available silica. My friend used to get some everytime he changed his plastic carbon filer cartridge. He was so mad when he found out they sold carbon separately and he didn't have to keep buying the cartridge again! :)
     
  8. Click Here!

  9. lotzofish

    lotzofish Fire Worm

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2008
    Messages:
    170
    Location:
    Ohio
    Are you sure that they are diatoms, and not dinoflagellates? The 1 year mark can bring some nasty algae issues.. Do you have a photo? Dinoflagellates love high-flow areas and hit my tank pretty hard during the 1-year time frame. They look alot like diatoms when they first start, and get much worse over time. Here is a photo of my tank when they started. I have eradicated them, but it took some EXTREME measures.
     

    Attached Files:

  10. Bogie

    Bogie Snowflake Eel

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2008
    Messages:
    2,350
    Location:
    CT
    What did you do to remedy the dinoflagellate breakout?
     
  11. lotzofish

    lotzofish Fire Worm

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2008
    Messages:
    170
    Location:
    Ohio
    I don't want to hijack this thread. So, I will start another detailing the battle; I will post it tomorrow. Here are a couple of "now" photos. As you can see, the tank is clear once again.. YAY!!!!!! ;D

    As you can see, I packed the tank full of chaeto. This was a MAJOR part of the solution, and I will go into detail in my thread.

    Thanks for inquiring! :)
     

    Attached Files:

    1 person likes this.
  12. dlandino

    dlandino Astrea Snail

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2009
    Messages:
    28
    Location:
    Clinton, CT 06413
    The attached pic is what it looked like when I first noticed it. Honestly I have been looking at pics of both diatoms and dynos and have waffled back and forth. I have not seen any evidence at all on the rocks or coral, just on the skimmer intake, output, and powerheads. After my first water change with new ro/di filters it appeared better. They did return but not as badly or as thick.
     

    Attached Files: