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Dinoflagellate Bloom

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jmaxwell

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 10, 2003
Messages
74
Location
Mill Creek, WA
I am currently dealing w/ a Dinoflagellate bloom in my tank and thought I would pass on what I have learned, since I havn't seen any info on the board. It looks kind of like brown snot...w/ oxigen bubbles trapped in it. At first I had mistaken it as some kind of algae or cyanobacteria. From what I have read the most effective way to get rid of it is to raise the pH. So I am doing this by dripping in Kalkwasser. I have added a carbon filter and reduced the photoperiod temporarely. So far my efforts seem to be working (I did catch the bloom fairly early as I guess the stuff can take over the whole tank.. If anyone else has experience w/ this let me know.

Jim
 

esmith

AQUAMANIAC
Joined
Oct 9, 2003
Messages
451
Location
Shoreline, WA
Hello Jim,

I did have a problem similar to this, it seemed that in the morning after the lights had been off all night the sand was completely clean but withing an hour or two it would be back. This has gone away since I got my sump up and running, and got some macro from Desolas (Wes).
It took a little while for this to decease but it did within a week or two.

I might suggest adding some macro to your sump if you can.

HTH,

Eliyah
 

jmaxwell

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 10, 2003
Messages
74
Location
Mill Creek, WA
funny that you mention the macro algae Eliyah...because I am in the process of setting up an area in my sump for macro algae, did you use caulerpa?

Jim
 

Alice

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 18, 2003
Messages
1,108
Over a year ago I had a massive dino outbreak (probably a result of die-off following a heat wave/temp spike while we were on vacation.) It took me longer than it should have to realize what I was dealing with and by that time, it had a good hold on the tank. I lost fish and corals and it was heartbreaking. I'd read horror stories of some people never being able to get rid of them and having to tear their tanks down and starting over from scratch. After fighting it for months I was about at the point where I figured I was going to have to do the same.

Adding a UV finally kicked it for me, in conjunction with many water changes, increased water movement, lots of syphoning/manual removal and rasing the pH up a tad.

Jim and esmith, I'm very glad you both caught the outbreaks early.

Alice
 

jmaxwell

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 10, 2003
Messages
74
Location
Mill Creek, WA
Yes Alice I have heard an UV Sterilizer can be helpfull if things don't improve shortly I may go that route in addition to all the other stuff I am doing. (so far so good, things don't seem to be getting worse). It didn't help that our power was out for almost 24 hrs yesterday.
 

Desolas

Free Jolly Jenkins.
Joined
Sep 1, 2003
Messages
165
Location
Lynnwood, WA
Is it a new setup or a mature tank?

Like Eliyah said, I've also found just having something out compete Dinoflagellate for nutrients seems to help. Any new tank I setup always has a cyano and dino bloom, once the sump/refugium is established and the caulerpa starts growing it dies off and goes away. It usually takes 4-6 weeks for me.

What your doing sounds like it will work just fine, like your already planning on I would add a sump and caulerpa and you should be fine. I've found any outbreaks to really not be a big deal as long as you clean them everyday.
 

Alice

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 18, 2003
Messages
1,108
Dinoflagellate outbreaks in tanks are fairly rare, thankfully. Diatoms (rusty, dusty brown coating) and cyanobacteria are pretty much the norm for new tanks and will usually pass within a short period of time, though it may not seem like it. ;)

There are many different sp's of dino's, zooxanthelle is a dino, but the type that affected my tank was a killer. Herbivorous fish died, algae-eating snails died and some of my corals died as well. It's hard to diagnose dinoflagellates but the most tell-tale sign (other than examining tank water under a microscope) is if you have snotty mats with air bubbles that will form strings in the water column and then break up and make a mat or film on top of the water. Unlike cyano that while it will get air bubbles, and can be lifted or netted from the substrate/rocks generally in one piece, dinoflagellates will disintegrate when grabbed or netted. It also smells bad and is associated with die-off in the tank, whether from a cylce, a spike or a dead animal.
 

jmaxwell

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 10, 2003
Messages
74
Location
Mill Creek, WA
I am quite sure it's a Dino outbreak, The tank is mature but I added large amount of live rock from a friend who was breaking down his tank as well changing out my sand bed, so basically the tank has to re-cycle due to these additions and that is when the outbreak started, so far it is only in certain areas of my tank and doesn't seem to be spreading much...I have noticed the worst areas are low flow areas which I aim to change...It has damaged one star polyp coral and an oregon pipe and killed a couple of snails. Let's just say I will be relieved when I am rid of the stuff.

Jim
 
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