Trying to help a Friend w/ Hair Algae problem

Discussion in 'Algae' started by flynhawaiianz28, Oct 26, 2009.

  1. flynhawaiianz28

    flynhawaiianz28 Peppermint Shrimp

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    Alright guys, I;m trying to help one of my friends out that I work with that is now as well informed on some of the saltwater tank topics as the rest of us are. So, the problem he is having right now is with hair algae like crazy. I'll post a picture but it is in clumps and I'm pretty sure it is hair algae. I tried to explain to him that he needs to not overfeed, change the water some, i just recently helped him order a good CUC from reefcleaners.org(excellent order by the way John!) but now he thinks that some sort of fish is the answer to the problem at the moment. I told him to try some boiling hot water and spray it on the hair algae in different cycles to kill it in the mean time & I also explained that a Phos-ban reactor is the best way to go to provide results over a long time span but he does not have the funds for that at the moment and does not think he is ready for the setup of a phos-ban reactor yet so he was looking for advice on a type of fish to get that would eat hair algae? I was thinking maybe a brown scopa tang? Are there any other tangs or surgeonfish that may work or maybe a algae eating blenny? The algae is so thick in the picture though that I'm not sure any fish will approach it. But I thought I would humor him as I promised to do some research & come back with some answers for him, so what do you guys think?

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  3. wkbrdr1661

    wkbrdr1661 Purple Spiny Lobster

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    lawnmower.
  4. WuWu

    WuWu Feather Star

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    sea hare ! ( its a slug but an uber cool one )
  5. Robman

    Robman Great White Shark

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    I just went through all of this and finally am HA free. I personally believe that you must do all of the rigjht things...IE GFO, dont overfeed, water changes etc. I did use Algaefix Marine for about 7 doses. But all in all. There is no fast fix. Once you make sure all of the above is correct. You just have to wait for the algae to exhaust what is in the rocks that it is feeding on. Mine took 3 months to clear. Be Patient. Also if your friend cannot afford a Phosban reactor but he can afford a new fish. His priorities are backwards. Marine Depot has them on sale for about 33.00. Less than most fish cost.
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  6. mikev15101

    mikev15101 Purple Spiny Lobster

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    Just keep doing what you are doing, you are on the right track, try to cut the lighting back a lil bit, cut back the feeding just a lil bit. The big turbo snails really helped kick the GHA out, i got a few 2 in large ones, they wouldnt stop eating it. I then scrubed the rocks down, while in the tank, i did a system for this as well. When i scrubbed down the rocks the GHA would float in the water, I would then set up a tube with a fine mess net net at the end to catch all of the gha, i then had a pump in the bucket to pump the water back into the display, this way i could save the water. I also have a uv steralizer set up in my sump as well. I feel as though this has helped kill the spores. My GHA lasted for about 3 months, and got really bad. After I did this it hasn't come back. It is key to break up the big patches of GHA, or they are just phosphate sponges sucking it up so it will not even show in the tests. Not to mention that your snails wont even touch it unless it is thinned out. DO NOT GIVE UP...you will get this taken care of given time and the right care. Good luck
  7. flynhawaiianz28

    flynhawaiianz28 Peppermint Shrimp

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    yea i'll tryo to keep explaining this to my friend but he isnt the most knowledgeable person in the world or mechcanically inclined and doesnt want to deal w/ buying the pump and all the tubing/hoses/media to get the phosban started but I would be willing to helpo so maybe i can get him to cut back on that stuff to deprive the hair algae and maybe get some turbos or a sea hare but I will try to talk him into a phosban reactor.
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  9. Newreef15

    Newreef15 Vlamingii Tang

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    sea hares love green hair
  10. mocarski

    mocarski Bristle Worm

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    Absolutely correct. Fix the root cause. Fish are fertilizer factories for algae. They may eat algae, but fertilizer comes out the other end. Your friend needs a way to remove more nutrients from his system, not recycle them.
  11. flynhawaiianz28

    flynhawaiianz28 Peppermint Shrimp

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    yea i'm trying to talk him into working on his system completely....i finally got to see the tank in person again since like 6 months previous and the tank has seriously gone downhill a ton! It's kinda depressing & i'm trying to help him out with all the advice i can & i'm almost gonna ask and see if he would like me to come over and do some maintenance on it. It is a complete mess! The koralia powerhead have a ton of hair algae off them the rocks need to be pulled out and have all the algae pulled off in my opinion...he needs to clean his skimmer and his canister filter. I'm also trying to convince him to do a serious water change as well as switch from crushed corals to some actual sand as well as convince him into a phosban reactor for the long haul
  12. wkbrdr1661

    wkbrdr1661 Purple Spiny Lobster

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    It might be time to start talking him in to giving you his livestock and tearing down the tank.
  13. pgreef

    pgreef Fire Goby

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    Sounds like he has no interest in maintaining it or spend any money on it. Try to convince him to tear it down.

    If he refuses and insists he will maintain it then:
    1. switch him to RO/DI water with some big water changes. I'm assuming he isn't using it already.
    2. Change out the CC for sand.
    3. Manually remove as much algae as you can.
    4. Get a lawmower blenny.
    5. Reduce feetings.
    6. Reduce lighting and, if the bulbs are old, change them.
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  15. bioreefdude

    bioreefdude Fu Manchu Lion Fish

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    i turn my lights off for 3 days a month to keep algae down but during that 3 days i skim hard and feed cyclopeeze every day .kinda like a storm is over top
  16. kip3

    kip3 Astrea Snail

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    Thanks for all the tips on getting rid of GHA... I'm working on that. Stupid Zeovit.. dosed 1/4 of what it suggested and before I knew it I had the algae. Frequent water changes, turbo snails, chemipure media and rock scrubs where I can manage is bringing it down.
  17. flynhawaiianz28

    flynhawaiianz28 Peppermint Shrimp

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    yea maybe I should convince him to tear it down & give me his livestock haha but I told him he needs to get rid of that stupid eel goby and get rid of the crushed coral, do a big water change, manually remove all the GHA and clean the crap out of all his equipment and most of all get a Phos-ban reactor. The worst part I forgot to mention was that he got talked into some reef supplements like calcium, strontium, etc. and I know he doesn't know exactly what he is doing and I guarantee it that he over dosed even though I told him he doesn't need any of those for the way his tank is now and I havent seen the tank look this bad since for a few years. I consider it a disaster =(
  18. vphan119

    vphan119 Plankton

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    you think this is bad? you shouldve seen my tank, this is just a front lawn compared to my forest!! honestly i tried all that, cutting down lights and clean up crew and emerald crab and stuff and none of it seemed to make difference in my tank. i bought a sea hare and in a week it was clean no joke. if your friend doesnt have the time then he should seriously consider tearing it down. i just hit my one year mark and im happy to say im algae free. sea hare saves lives.....
  19. flynhawaiianz28

    flynhawaiianz28 Peppermint Shrimp

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    yea i know...maybe i can try to talk him into taking all the right steps and get a sea hare as well