Lights & growth during cycling ?

Discussion in 'Lighting' started by neo, 18 Mar 2010.

  1. neo

    neo

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    Yo,
    been cycling since beginning of Feb but with no lights,
    have LR in tank with all the red corraline it came with,
    BUT nothing much happening with the base rock I have, the base rock is slightly brownish compared to the white it was when starting out.
    So my question, the fact that I dont have lights on the tank, does this hinder the progress of my cycle ?

    Second Q.
    I've read in other posts about the live in the DSB but I dont' see any in my DSB, am I suppose to see anything?
     
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  3. Tobes

    Tobes Retired Moderator

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    Strong lights are not recommended when curing live rock during a cycle otherwise nuisance algae might overgrow beneficial life on the rocks.
    Having normal lighs on cured live rock is obviously fine as that happens in your tank anyway.
    Did you seed the DSB with live sand from another reefer, live sea sand or by placing a piece of good quality live rock on top of it for a few days?
     
  4. neo

    neo Thread Starter

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    Tobes,
    yes the DSB was seeded, some from RiaanP and some from Lanzo.
    wht do you see as normal lights? Some T5's or are you talking about normal lights in the room where the tank is located /
     
  5. Tobes

    Tobes Retired Moderator

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    Sorry man, normal lights as in the lights you use on your tank, meaning not weaker lights :p. How long ago did you seed it? DSB's can take 6 months plus to mature if setup correctly ;)
     
  6. neo

    neo Thread Starter

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    was seeded second week of Feb, so about 6weeks old, seems I'm to hasty.

    So can I continue without lights or should I get some lights at this point?
     
  7. Tobes

    Tobes Retired Moderator

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    How's your water parameters? If ammonia and nitrites is 0 and nitrates very low and easily controlled by water changes, then I would say yes as coraline algae will start to grow if calcium levels are close to natural sea water parameters (420).
    You might still get some light brown and green algae on the sand and glass.
     
  8. neo

    neo Thread Starter

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    Thx Tobes,
    params are 0 for all except Nitrate which sits at 10, ph at 8.2 and Alk at 7, have read a bit on alk and seems I should get this somewhat higher.
    Dont have test kit for Calcium yet.
    Have little bit of brown algea and slight green on silicone in the corners, some white specs growing on rear pane as well.

    I'm still going to wait a while before stocking, just wanted to know it I'm holding things back by not having lights.
     
  9. Tobes

    Tobes Retired Moderator

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    Alkalinity is not too low, but you can pick it up a little bit if you want to by dosing Bicarbonate of Soda (koeksoda). When the kH of my 500l system was 6, I put 2 teaspoons in a 2litre coke bottle with RO water.
    I made a small hole in the cap so that an airline tubing can fit through it loosely (otherwise it creates a vacuum) right to the bottom of the bottle. I then put a small valve on the tip of the pipe hanging above the water in the sump. Open the valve, suck on the pipe to get a siphon and adjust to a low drip to prevent pH swings.
    Just take note that was my systems demand and that raised my kH to 7.5. I did it again after 2 days and it picked up to 9.
    Depending on your system volume, start with maybe 1 spoon, you can always increase later. and don't test the same day, wait a day before checking after you dosed.
    Remember, changes needs to done slowly to minimise the effect it might have on the tank ;)
     
  10. neo

    neo Thread Starter

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    i was thinking of relying on the salt and weekly wc to keep the alk ok, will also wait untill i have some corals and LS in the tank before starting to adjust anything so i can see what the requirements of the live in the tank is rather then just do it cause other people say so.
    But now i know how to do it and wont need running around trying to figure out what to do when it is actually necessary.
    Thx.
     
  11. Tobes

    Tobes Retired Moderator

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    I agree, no need to do it now as you don't have anything in the tank ;)
    Weekly WC will help and you can always add a kalkstirrer later on that works through the auto top up if you have one. Also helps to keep pH stable and kH and calcium at good levels :)
     
  12. RiaanP

    RiaanP Moderator

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    The man made base rock can take many months before it will look like live rock. also because it is below the live rock. It is also more solid, so live take a lot longer to enter the rock.

    The DSB can take a while. But remember, if you seed it, you must feed it. Else what you have will starve. So just a little bit of flakes should be enough to sustain the worms whatever you have in your DSB. There is no live in your display that provide poo and uneaten food for them to consume.
     
  13. viper357

    viper357 Admin MASA Contributor

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    Agreed.

    You can start putting your lights on, this will encourage a bit of algae growth which will encourage pod growth and also give any critters on the live rock something to feed on. Best to do this sooner than later so that you can get rid of the major 'algae cycle'. Also when you put your hermit crabs and snails in they will need some algae to eat.

    An alkalinity reading of 7 is ok, you can push this up a bit to 8 or 9, but no need to concentrate on that right now.
     
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