Red stuff taking over my LR

Discussion in 'Urgent Help Needed' started by cmclellen, 11 Nov 2009.

  1. cmclellen

    cmclellen

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    Hi,

    What could I do to get rid of this red hair type algae that is taking over my LR? Ppl have suggested increasing the flow, which I have done, but it just seems to be taking over?

    Any help would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks


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  3. dallasg

    dallasg Moderator MASA Contributor

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    its eighter algae or cyno-bacteria, we first need to source the cause.
    1. Are u using RO water for you tank?
    2. how old is the tank? did it cycle completely?
    3. when, after how many weeks, did u add livestock?
    4. when and how often do u feed?
     
  4. dallasg

    dallasg Moderator MASA Contributor

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    it can be caused by high nitrates and phosphates, have you tested these? if so what are there values?
     
  5. cmclellen

    cmclellen Thread Starter

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    1. Are u using RO water for you tank?
    Yes
    2. how old is the tank? did it cycle completely?
    6 months and it did cycle completely according to the Ammonia, Nitrite and Nitrate readings.
    3. when, after how many weeks, did u add livestock?
    I added my first fish after 6 weeks of starting to cycle my tank
    4. when and how often do u feed?
    once a day in the evening

    I've also cut the lighting down to 9 hours - 2xT5 + 1xMH
    I haven't taken the phosphate readings as I don't have a kit, but the other readings are 0.
     
  6. crispin

    crispin

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    eish, nasty looking stuff.

    has the algae bloomed very fast or has it been slowly creeping up on you.

    whats its trsucture like out of intrest, is it sturdy or very flimsy and slimy?

    it doesnt look like cyco to me, so blasting it with current isnt likely to help, but out of intrest what internal flow do you have in there?

    seeing as you have heaters in there, I am assuming you dont have a sump, so can you go through what mechanical filtration you do have for us?
     
  7. crispin

    crispin

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    my applogies, ive just read your tank thread and see that you do have a sump, but that you took your DIY skimmer out. Did you ever replace it with another skimmer?

    i know some people maintain that there is a conspiracy by the manufacturers of skimmers to make us buy them, but thats total bull in my view. A good skimmer really is essencial, especially in the early stages and your tank seems to have battled from day one. Did you replace the power heads with propper internal pumps as suggested before?

    how is the DSB doing, have the lower levels shown any sign of colour changes yet?
     
  8. cmclellen

    cmclellen Thread Starter

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    Thanks for all the replies guys.

    The Red algae isn't slimy, it's almost like hair. I do have a sump, just there's wasn't enough space once I had setup the DSB in the sump. I also do have a skimmer that I made, and there's about <3 cup fulls of dry foam I have to clean out of it every day. I've been doing weekly 10% water changes too. I have an enclosed container full of bio balls that the water from the DT flows into first before entering the sump, and the first compartment in the sump has the protein skimmer - from there, the water flows over a DSB, and then into the last compartment where there's some Chaeto and the return pump. I'm starting to see coraline algae growing on the sides of the glass within the DT, so isn't that a sign that the water parameters are ok? My fish, invertebrates, etc. also seem very healthy. I have 2 turbo snails that I was hoping were going to eat it all up ;), but they're too busy else where.

    Thanks again for trying to help out, I really appreciate all your responses.
     
  9. JD167

    JD167

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    Nasty looking stuff. Could you maybe post your paramaters here? I see you have 2 heaters in your DT, what is the temperature sitting at?

    When doing your water changes, did you try to syphon this stuff out?
     
  10. dallasg

    dallasg Moderator MASA Contributor

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    looks like your bio-balls are creating excess nitrates, a possibility.
    so over a period of days, 14+ remove 2-3 a day and see how it goes
     
  11. Boendoe

    Boendoe

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    Like Dallas said start taking out the Bio-balls they will increases your nitrates. Then also how much follow do you have in your tank? And what salt are you using to do your water changes?
     
  12. cmclellen

    cmclellen Thread Starter

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    I've just recenlty cleaned 1/2 the bio-Balls, ensuring I don't kill off too much of the bacteria, but still that stuff keeps taking over - I'll start taking the bio balls out.
    I've tried siphoning the stuff out, but it doesn't budge from the LR.

    The temperature is between 25-27 degrees celcius.

    I've got a korilia 2 and Seio 4,400l/h powerheads in the tank - the return pump from sump is a 2,000l/h pump.
     
  13. dallasg

    dallasg Moderator MASA Contributor

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    remove the bio-balls slowly, over a period of time...
    how many u think u have?

    also one can get the suppliment stability to help remove the nitrates
     
  14. cmclellen

    cmclellen Thread Starter

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    I actually have a whole box full of bio-balls the water is flowing through - so probably about 300-400 - as I'm pretty new to this hobby, I'm still learning, so I didn't know whether this was a good idea or not.
     
  15. dallasg

    dallasg Moderator MASA Contributor

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    its good and bad...
    bio-balls are so effective in the first 2 stages of the nitrogen cycle, ammonia to nitrite, nitrite to nitrate, what they are bad at is removing nitrate, so your algae is using that to grow, when u stop the excess nitrates it will start to fade...

    the best way is to slowly remove them, 10-20 at a time, so that ur dsb can grow accordingly, i am near u and dont mind popping past and testing phosphates etc..
    can also add more calurpa and cheato to ur system to remove nutrients

    if u stir ur gravel, does it make the water cloudy?
     
  16. cmclellen

    cmclellen Thread Starter

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    Hey Dallas,
    That would be awesome, because I'm seriously beginning to get so frustrated and thinking of just giving in.
    The chaeto I have doesn't seem to be growing at all - as for calurpa, I'll get some over the weekend.
    I haven't tried stirring the gravel.
     
  17. dallasg

    dallasg Moderator MASA Contributor

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    cool, i can try for sat morning, else can meet up and give me about 100ml of water and will test at my place, got sort of a chaotic weekend, but can def fit in a water test.

    will pm u my contact details
     
  18. Kunhardt

    Kunhardt

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    Thats definately RED HAIR ALGAE...really nasty stuff, worse than GHA in my opinion, I got a little in on a rock a while back and it spread like wild fire. Agree with Dallas that bio balls could be causing a nitrate problem, but this stuff seems to grow even with low nitrates, my old tanks nitrates were at 0.5ppm and it still grew. Maybe look at a good Phosphate remover as well and do manual removal, this seemed to work the best at getting rid of it for me.
     
  19. koeks

    koeks

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    i have the same stuff it is a pest used to be every where but now only on a few rocks just keep syphoning the stuff out till it goes away
     
  20. Tobes

    Tobes Retired Moderator

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    I would advise you to stay away from caulerpa. They are on the list! The list that says kill it, don't give to other reefers and don't put back into the ocean.
    Caulerpa can also release numerous toxins that can kill some of your livestock if they go sexual.
    Some people will say you must leave the lights on 24/7 to prevent it from going sexual, I agree, but that goes against having a reverse photo period to keep the pH stable at night. Display lights on in the day, sump lights on at night (if you have macro algae).
    Rather use chaeto, much safer and more forgiving than caulerpa. Last named can also take over your system if not watched closely.
     
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