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Thread: Green algae?

  1. #1
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    Green algae?

    I recently bought a 30gal nano reef tank from a friend to try and save it. When I first saw the thing every rock was covered in hair algae, the glass could not be looked through due to a carpet of green algae, the salt levels where off the charts all the fish had died but one and a water change/filter cleaning had not been done in 4 months. Saying all this I have zero experience in salt water tanks and have only had fresh water fish for the the past 5 years. But I have managed to clean up 80% of the hair algae, get proper water flow and filtration on it but for the last week the green algae on the glass has been going crazy. I can clean the glass fully in the morning and by the next morning the glass is covered in a green carpet. I'am curious what could be causing this and how can I keep it from coming back.

    Here is what the tank looks like about 20 hours after I clean it. http://tinypic.com/r/2zrj1j4/6 and http://tinypic.com/r/2eklpqg/6

    I do not know the full numbers on my water but I know nitrites are almost zero and the lighting is 2 T5 power-glo 24w and 2 marine-glo 24w blubs. i have done a 20% water change once in the last week and do not over feed. The tank currently holds 1 red and white shrimp (unsure of name), 5 hermit crabs, 1 6-lined wrasse, 1 clownfish a ton of random starfish and a few centipede looking things that come out at night.

    Any help on solving this problem would be great!

    Zac

  2. #2
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    how long are your lights left on for?
    and do you have any sort of clean up crew?

  3. #3
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    I bought the shrimp, 5 hermit crabs and a urchin in hopes they would keep the tank clean. the lights are left on from 6:30am to midnight so the tank only has 6 and a half hours of darkness every day. I was also looking into picking up a blenny to clean the rest of the hair algae I couldn't get off by hand.

  4. #4
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    you should cut your lights back.
    cutting back your lights to 6h a day until it is under control should help immensely ,
    the crabs will clean up the algae in the meantime

    even after it is under control lights should only be on 8-10h a day

    It is a very nice tank , hope it clears up for you!

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    I'd also check your phosphates... if it hasn't been maintained prior, then you probably have some high phosphates too (Regular water changes will bring it down, but if the rock is saturated, it may take a while).

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    Where do you get your water from??? RODI or city???

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    Set the lights to be on only for 9 hours a day, if the corals don't like it ill have to increase that time up slowly. As for the water 50% of it came from the original tank as I didn't want to take all the bacteria out of the water and only add fresh water when I brought it home. The other 50% is fresh water I mixed up and added salt to. I live on a small farm so our water comes from a well with zero chemicals added. I plan on doing 10% water change per week to see if I can get the algae to claim down a bit. I have no clue what the phosphate level is currently, but if it is high doing weekly water changes should fix it. On the topic of water I was curious why water could not be brought directly from the ocean rather then using fresh water and adding salt and bacteria to it?

  8. #8
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    You can use NSW (Natural Salt Water), but you want to be careful where you get it from, as you can also bring in unwanted pollutants. If you have a spot to draw from away from any industry/fishing/etc... it shouldn't pose a problem.

  9. #9
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    Update: After finding a nice spot in western shore to pick up salt water I did 2 50% water changes in the last 2 weeks. The algae now takes 4-5 days to be noticeable rather then every 24 hours. So it was definitely high phosphates in the water. Which I am sure will be completely cleared up after a few more water changes. Big thanks on the advice guys! Next stop cleaning hair algae haha!

  10. #10
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    Glad to hear your getting it under control! :)

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