Boiling LR, ya or nay ???

Discussion in 'Biological/Natural Filtration and Deep Sand Beds' started by Sammy, 29 Mar 2011.

  1. Sammy

    Sammy

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    Hi Guys,

    I'm interested in buying some LR from a fellow reefer, problem is there's quite a lot of algae on the rock, hence the good price.

    My question is (and I know many of you are anti this) is there any problem in me boiling this rock?

    Also I'm only going to be using this LR in my refuge.

    So in a nutshell I'm hoping to kill anything unwanted on the rock by boiling it, put it back in my sump and hopefully bring it live again ???
     
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  3. chas84

    chas84

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    No no no no... The correct process called "cooking" liverock, it's basically keeping it in a container in a dark place with only a powerhead and heater for a few weeks until the algae has died off. What type of algae is on the rock? I'm assuming it's either green hair algae or bryopsis (tiny "tree-fern" like leaves).

    Cooking liverock doesn't involve any heat or boiling. just time :)
     
  4. Tremayn

    Tremayn

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    cook it :p
     
  5. Slagter

    Slagter MASA Contributor

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    +1...

    Just leave it in the dark for a long time with some flow and a heater and your live rock will be void of any algae!! Don't boil it!
     
  6. Sammy

    Sammy Thread Starter

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    Ok thanks guys, what about other pests like aptasia etc ???

    And just out of interest, what would happen if I boiled it ?
     
  7. Nemos Janitor

    Nemos Janitor

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    I think before you purchase you must first be sure that it is live rock. Lots of so called LR are in fact sandstone or klippies from the rock pools.

    One point to always remember is that old LR comes with baggage one cannot see. It is the amount of P & N absorbed in the rock. And if it has algae on it my bet you will have PO4 issues.

    Always better to buy new. you will save big $ in the long run averting issues.
     
  8. Nemos Janitor

    Nemos Janitor

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    A high electric bill. :biggrin:
     
  9. leslie hempel

    leslie hempel Moderator MASA Contributor

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    i cant see the sence in paying all that cash and boiling it (assuming you mean putting it in a pot and actually heating it to boiling point?)

    i would rather buy base rock and seed this with a select few pieces of high quality LR. way cheaper and with the correct supplementation (which you will be doing anyway in prep for coral) the spores on the LR will pread to the base rock.

    Base rock become aerobically active with bacteria in 30 days and less but it will be more prone to go through diatom blooms because the surface is uncolonised with corraline etc etc.

    Now cooking is an option. but it may not remove all hitchikers sich as crabs and possibly aptasia, and it is possible that the algaes you are trying to eradicate with this process may become dormant and simply revive onve the rock is in the DT.

    so choosing good quality LR is important from the start..
     
  10. Sammy

    Sammy Thread Starter

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    My word, so you saying boiling might not even kill any unwanted's ??? I'm looking at only using this rock in my fuge though ?

    My thoughts were kill everything and re-seed with my mature LR ???

    Thx all for your inputs !
     
  11. Henkart

    Henkart

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    Hi Sammy

    Don't boil the Rocks

    you will kill off a nice supply of left ove bacteria that could be very helpful to your tank in the short and long run...
     
  12. amalick

    amalick

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    Sorry for the hijack, but my question may be relevant.

    A fellow reefer stripped down his tank a month or two ago, because of a severe problem with Aptasia. Dont ask, its a sad story.:(

    He placed all his rock outside in the sun where it has been drying out for all that time. He has offered me the rock for a new extended system i'm planning. Its a long story but I dont want live rock and I cant seem to find dead base rock at an LFS in Cape Town, hence my interest

    The rock shapes and sizes are brilliant, a mix of Fiji and Tonga branch. :yeahdude:

    1) Should I avoid the rock or use it ?

    2) Can aptasia survive being outside in the sun on dryed out rock for so long ? - I know these buggers are tuff, but i mean really they not indistructable

    3) I take it that cooking (not with boiling water LOL) is no longer relevent or pointless, since it already dead ?
     
  13. JsPLAYn

    JsPLAYn

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    R+R aquatics gt tons of base rock, I personally bort from them an its very porous=perfect
     
  14. leslie hempel

    leslie hempel Moderator MASA Contributor

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    the rock is pretty much dead, and the problem is that the bacteria has dies within the pores of the rock and when put back into saltwater will leach out phosphate and nitrates and more than likley lead to a gha outbreak.

    it can still be used if flushed with clean freshwater (preferably RO water) as even tap water may seep into the pores and actually impregnate phosphate and other nasties into the rock.

    i personally would rehabilitate and use the rock, in fact i am doing that very thing with my current system. my rock is outside and bel=ing allowed to weather.

    another alternitive i expolred early lasy year was leaving aptasia infected rock outside in a bucket in the mid of winter. there was die off and all the aptasia dissepeared, couldent seem to handle the 6-9deg night temps.

    i saw it in a tank the other day and it is beautiful with no signs of aptasia.

    so there are other possibilities to consider.
     
  15. amalick

    amalick

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    Thanks leslie

    Based on your logic, I would assume that one could place the rock in buckets of RO water and leave it in a fridge or freezer for a while. It would therefore similate the effect of cold winter temps ?

    Funny how we have gone from cooking (boiling LOL) to freezing so quickly on this thread:p
     
  16. Nemos Janitor

    Nemos Janitor

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    Hee Hee He..... careful not to freeze to quickly. When you heat them up again they come back big time.:p

    I often dry out LR with vast amount of Aiptasia for 2 - 3 months. I then dip it in bleach for a few hours and then I rinse and soak for a day or so in RO. Appies dont come back but the LR is dead.
     
    Last edited: 30 Mar 2011
  17. crispin

    crispin

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    +2 to that. look at what you are buying before spending hard cash on purchasing someone elses problems, which you are likely to inherit.
     
  18. chas84

    chas84

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    I think boiling the rock will kill off pretty much anything and everything. Because you're only going to use it in your fuge, this is what I would do:

    1.) "Cook" the live rock (the dark place with powerhead and heater method - not boiling anything) for about 2 months or until all the algae has dyed off and rocks look clean. All the algae should die off and leach out. You don't want this to happen in your system as the dead algae will only leach the nutrients and release spores into your water.

    2.) So once the rock is algae free, manually kill off Aiptasia with a good commercial product. If there's not too much aiptasia, dip only those little sections of the rock that has aips, in boiling hot water (don't pour the hot water over the rock :tt2:).

    3.) Then use the rocks in your fuge.

    Depending on what type of algae you have and if you have a light above your fuge, it might possibly be a good thing having the algae there. There are also a few people that see a benefit in having aips in cryptic zones or their sump. I side with them and believe in the right place aips are good in a way I can't scientifically explain, but not in your display tank obviously...
     
  19. IMarine

    IMarine

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    Hi guys i thrive on boiling rock in ro water as we dont now what is in there,by boiling your rock you are 100% sure that all nastys are out, and that includes aiptasia,fire worm etc,after i boil my rock i then let it cool down in the same bucket then add to ro water for a week,then flush out all ro water,then i will cure for 2 weeks with salt water mix,then only will i add to my tank,yes it kills of all good bacteria,but rather that then sitting with a major problem.
     
  20. chas84

    chas84

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    What's the point in buying liverock then? You can save yourself tons of money and loads of effort buy buying base rock or even ceramic rock.
     
  21. Sammy

    Sammy Thread Starter

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    Thanks All for the good advice and input ! I'm gonna go with Chas's advice and "cook" it for a few months, BTW I'm crap scared about aip and after this thread even more nervous LOL
     
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