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Green Hair Algae Take Over

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JVReef

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Joined
Nov 9, 2004
Messages
15
Location
Santa Cruz, CA
Greetings,
Would appreciate some input from the forum on Green Hair Algae. I have a 65 gal tank that is fairly stocked with rock and soft corrals. Power Compact 96W X 4 lighting, 2 protien skimmers, good water flow and filtration through a "diatone bag". Just in the past 2 months I have green hair algae growing everywhere. I use e-bionics alkaline/calcium suplements (daily) and bruch the rock to remove as much algae as possible. Wondering if calcium reactor would help. Or any other ideas?
 

mojoreef

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Jul 5, 2003
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Sumner
Hey JV welcome to Reef Frontiers. Their are many ways in which algae can thrive in your reef. So we have to cover a bunch of stuff. See if you can answer a few of these questions.
How often do you feed
are you using a rodi for top off water
Let me know maker of that additive.
Have you done any testing for phosphates
Let me know a bit about the tanks filtration, ie dsb, or any mechanical??
Do you mean Diatom filter??


Mike
 

JVReef

Member
Joined
Nov 9, 2004
Messages
15
Location
Santa Cruz, CA
Green Algae

Mike,

Thanks for the response.....Here we go;

Note: Tank has been established for 4 years.

* How often do you feed: fish - 1x per day (food is gone in 1 minute by scarfing fish). I feed the tank with addatives on 1x per day and 1x per week
* Are you using a rodi for top off water - RO water only
* Let me know maker of that additive.- ESV - B Ionic Calcium Buffer System
* Have you done any testing for phosphates - not recently (I should) past test have all been negative.
* Let me know a bit about the tanks filtration, ie dsb, or any mechanical?? All Filtration is mechanical, protien skimmers, and the mechanical filter is a filter medium bag (diatone bag?), no other filtration.
*** Additional: In the past I had higher tank load of crabs, snails and conch that may have consumed algae. Also, I'm wondering if my Power Compact Bulbs may be weak (approching 1 year old) spectrum.

Thanks, Jeff
 

mojoreef

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Cool Jeff. the tank sounds well established. Could be that the lights are helping a bit. they do tend to move to the red spectrum when they get older. I would suggest a few test for Phosphates, check on the rocks surface, your top off and a general water column.
Still lost on that diatom/diatom is it the kind you put the powder into??


Mike
 

pondguy

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Nov 1, 2004
Messages
26
Location
Mankato, Minnesota
I too have been having problem with hair algae lately, inadvetantly I topped off 40 gallons of fresh RO water to the system over night and the specific gravity went from 1.024 down to 1.019. This actually seemed to stop the algae growth, it all turned brown and died. But now after a couple of weeks, the algae is back and I am afraid it is back for revenge. Should I lower the salinity again or try something new. I want to add a refugium to my 55 gallon sump, would it be big enough for a 220 gallon tank. I also have a protein skimmer (Berlin Ventury Turbo, rated for 150-400 gallons) that is working, but not keeping up. If feeding is not an issue, phosphates are low, lighting is good....what else could it be and how do you get rid of it......Ryan
 

mojoreef

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Hey Ryan stay away from the salinity drops, that can be really stressful for your corals/fish and inverts. If you are getting a reading (even small) of Phosphates (inorganic Phosphates) that is telling you that your organic phosphates are completely saturated to the point they can not bind any more.
What happened in your system is that the algae died off and created a alarge bacterial bloom (bacteria population increased to meet all the food given it by the dieing algae). Once the bacteria consumed all the rotting algae it is now out of food and is begining to die off, as it dies off the algae once again is johnny on the spot to take advantae of the decaying bacteria. Its a phosphate cycle.
What you need to do is to fnd the source of your Phosphate (which is the fuel) in your tank. If you take a P test of the general water column and then take several other tests in possible locations to find what is higher. So do some testing on the rocks surface, the water in the sand bed if you have any, the top off water and after any mechanical filter you may have.
Also tell me about your additives, salt mix and the type of food you feed.



hope it helps


Mike
 

JVReef

Member
Joined
Nov 9, 2004
Messages
15
Location
Santa Cruz, CA
Mike,
I'll dive into the water testing ASAP (11/9 @ 4:00pm: just tested the water. zero (0) phosphates in tank or RO top off water. PH 8.0, zero (0) nitrates, 1.022 specific gravity and alkalinity is 8.4 DKH or 3.0 meq/L) and update my Power Compact fluorescent lights. Do you have an opinion on Blue Light vs. Actinic?

Regarding the "Diatone" filter. It is simply a filter bag that has the texture of 1/16" felt that the water filters through (approx 6" dia. x 12" deep) in the sump via the incoming water from the tank. It filters through the bag at .05 microns (in sump [sump tank-25 gal.] behind a perfereated plenum.) proceeds into the main sump area with 2 protien skimmers (in tank style with total capacity at 140 gals), heated then pumped out with dual power heads (690 gal/hr x 2) through a manifold in the tank for distribution of "filtered" water.
 
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Angelscrx

Import Fish
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Jul 30, 2004
Messages
1,103
Location
Ettrick, VA
Sounds like a good set up. Have you had anything die in the tank lately like a coral or a fish? Have you changed foods or supplements? Is the tank near a window? What kind of janitors do you have in the tank? Turbo snails and red leg hermits work really well for green hair.
 

JVReef

Member
Joined
Nov 9, 2004
Messages
15
Location
Santa Cruz, CA
No death in the tank that I can detect. And the food/suppliments have been the same for 2 years along with the tank is isolated from any direct sun light. As for janitors....I could probably use some additional turbos. Currently have 5-6 turbos, 8 red leg hermits and 1 conch.
 

mojoreef

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Jeff sound pretty good. do you have a sand substraight in the tank?? if so lets get a test of the pore water from it, also do one on the surface of the rocks.
I get it now on the filter.


MIke
 

JVReef

Member
Joined
Nov 9, 2004
Messages
15
Location
Santa Cruz, CA
Mike,
Did some extensive water testing......
No phosphates and no nitrates in the aragonite sand, in the algae bed, near the rocks anywhere. My suspicion is that IF there is any phospates or nitrates present that the green aglae would suck them up as their food source immediately (?).

I'm banking on new lights (power compact bulbs) and some regular water changes (1-2x per week) to refesh the H2O.

Jeff
 

mojoreef

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Messages
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Yea that does make sence. Your testing for inorganic P but if it is being used up right away that would make sence, but I would still expect to see some measurable ammount. Give the lights a try and lets see what happens.


Mike
 
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