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SaltyShel

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[Little bit of info/background]:
I had this 16g tank running, empty, for months. It never had lights on, only sunlight, and I thought it was cycled based on the ammonia/nitrate being none or low. A couple weeks ago my poor clown was dying and I tried to save him, so I put him in this tank (the other one he was in was just not stable and slowly getting worse and toxic). So I was told by a LFS that he couldn’t bring any algae or pests with him and to just get him out of the other tank so I did and I moved him over to this one. He unfortunately didn’t make it though.. That same night, I scrubbed my hermit and snail shells really good with a tooth brush, dipped them in RODI, and put them in this tank. My hermit seems to have died, I don’t know why, but my snail is acting normal.
The weird part is that this tank has looked pristine up until a couple days ago.

[the problem]:
Now all of a sudden, I’m seeing these yellowish patches pop up EVERYWHERE. Ignore the red spots, those rocks came like that. It’s supposed to be beneficial bacteria but who knows lol.

please help me diagnose these yellow spots!! Im seeing my snail shell is getting yellower by the day, there’s tiny sprouts of grass-like algae popping up in some areas, and I’ve never seen anything like this before. There’s also a blue spot in two places and idk what that could be.

[current info/recent changes]:
I did a 1-2 gallon water change 3 days ago.
Last night the ammonia was at .2ppm so I added biospira.

current parameters (as of now):
Temp - 80°
Ammonia - between .2 and 0
Nitrate - between 12ppm and 25ppm
Salinity - 1.025

79810CE9-EEE4-4D61-82EB-1B7044D1ECF4.jpeg FAF42A3B-D2C4-4E21-9DD0-3B44B81AF270.jpeg 7AE505CD-6C86-4FE6-9EDC-99EF7934AB95.jpeg 9F4ABCF5-CF73-4DA8-BDDB-EC76B6B91552.jpeg 62E6DFC0-DBE3-4D15-9B75-A7CFEC2FD68E.jpeg 65B0F15E-D469-4C76-907E-A79CAA469989.jpeg 59CCEB08-6556-4291-97CD-FDACA716DD53.jpeg 6BDF4A0C-0C6A-4FB4-9187-BA52E6CC2AAB.jpeg 4D2B6C58-632B-4CCE-BA6B-F8842C458FE9.jpeg ECCBA37A-0A76-439C-981C-0011F615CF7B.jpeg
 
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Dan_P

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[Little bit of info/background]:
I had this 16g tank running, empty, for months. It never had lights on, only sunlight, and I thought it was cycled based on the ammonia/nitrate being none or low. A couple weeks ago my poor clown was dying and I tried to save him, so I put him in this tank (the other one he was in was just not stable and slowly getting worse and toxic). So I was told by a LFS that he couldn’t bring any algae or pests with him and to just get him out of the other tank so I did and I moved him over to this one. He unfortunately didn’t make it though.. That same night, I scrubbed my hermit and snail shells really good with a tooth brush, dipped them in RODI, and put them in this tank. My hermit seems to have died, I don’t know why, but my snail is acting normal.
The weird part is that this tank has looked pristine up until a couple days ago.

[the problem]:
Now all of a sudden, I’m seeing these yellowish patches pop up EVERYWHERE. Ignore the red spots, those rocks came like that. It’s supposed to be beneficial bacteria but who knows lol.

please help me diagnose these yellow spots!! Im seeing my snail shell is getting yellower by the day, there’s tiny sprouts of grass-like algae popping up in some areas, and I’ve never seen anything like this before. There’s also a blue spot in two places and idk what that could be.

[current info/recent changes]:
I did a 1-2 gallon water change 3 days ago.
Last night the ammonia was at .2ppm so I added biospira.

current parameters (as of now):
Temp - 80°
Ammonia - between .2 and 0
Nitrate - between 12ppm and 25ppm
Salinity - 1.025

79810CE9-EEE4-4D61-82EB-1B7044D1ECF4.jpeg FAF42A3B-D2C4-4E21-9DD0-3B44B81AF270.jpeg 7AE505CD-6C86-4FE6-9EDC-99EF7934AB95.jpeg 9F4ABCF5-CF73-4DA8-BDDB-EC76B6B91552.jpeg 62E6DFC0-DBE3-4D15-9B75-A7CFEC2FD68E.jpeg 65B0F15E-D469-4C76-907E-A79CAA469989.jpeg 59CCEB08-6556-4291-97CD-FDACA716DD53.jpeg 6BDF4A0C-0C6A-4FB4-9187-BA52E6CC2AAB.jpeg 4D2B6C58-632B-4CCE-BA6B-F8842C458FE9.jpeg ECCBA37A-0A76-439C-981C-0011F615CF7B.jpeg
Looks normal. Microscopic organisms, probably photosynthetic, are starting grow.
 
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SaltyShel

SaltyShel

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You keep saying nitrate - do you mean nitrite?
No I only have a nitrate and ammonia test kit, I can’t test for nitrite currently. I was told I don’t really need it by a few diff people and LFS so I never got one

since you mentioned it I figure it’s for a reason so… is there something about nitrite you think is causing this? should I get a nitrite kit even if cycled? Idk if it is cycled or not but I think it is based on all I’ve read/watched about cycling
 

mcdrichj

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If you tank is sitting in direct sunlight that is not preferred "yellow" spots look like hair algae starting. Not really a big deal because you need to let your tank stabilize. You will not be able to prevent every pest algae from getting in your tank so dont panic.

Second as far as I know you should not freshwater dip inverts. Someone please correct me if I am wrong. The freshwater dip is usually to remove parasites from a fish. I know that you can remove or kill flukes with a fw dip and a fluke is considered an invert.

As far as the fish goes and pests you absolutely can introduce pests into a tank from a fish. I make my best attempt to eliminate any kind of fish sickness or parasite through the process of medicated QT. I'm not sure what you had going in your other tank but usually water changes and prime can handle these issues (depending on the fish load). My guess would be that the fish was sick or had a parasite because if it was an unstable tank putting it in a stable tank the fish would have been fine.

Honestly you really need to relax and be patient in this hobby. You are going to get algae in the tank it will happen and if you panic anytime something happens you will most likely make things worse with wild changes to your tank.
 

mcdrichj

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No I only have a nitrate and ammonia test kit, I can’t test for nitrite currently. I was told I don’t really need it by a few diff people and LFS so I never got one

since you mentioned it I figure it’s for a reason so… is there something about nitrite you think is causing this? should I get a nitrite kit even if cycled? Idk if it is cycled or not but I think it is based on all I’ve read/watched about cycling
you need to test for nitrite so you know if your cycle is complete. you should have 0 ammonia 0 nitrite and you want to keep nitrate low under 25ppm. Make sure you have a good test kit. For a test kit I recommend a Hanna Checker or Salifert test kits. At the min you should have Ammonia Nitrite and Nitrate test kits.
 
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SaltyShel

SaltyShel

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If you tank is sitting in direct sunlight that is not preferred "yellow" spots look like hair algae starting. Not really a big deal because you need to let your tank stabilize. You will not be able to prevent every pest algae from getting in your tank so dont panic.

Second as far as I know you should not freshwater dip inverts. Someone please correct me if I am wrong. The freshwater dip is usually to remove parasites from a fish. I know that you can remove or kill flukes with a fw dip and a fluke is considered an invert.

As far as the fish goes and pests you absolutely can introduce pests into a tank from a fish. I make my best attempt to eliminate any kind of fish sickness or parasite through the process of medicated QT. I'm not sure what you had going in your other tank but usually water changes and prime can handle these issues (depending on the fish load). My guess would be that the fish was sick or had a parasite because if it was an unstable tank putting it in a stable tank the fish would have been fine.

Honestly you really need to relax and be patient in this hobby. You are going to get algae in the tank it will happen and if you panic anytime something happens you will most likely make things worse with wild changes to your tank.
Thank you, I have never actually cycled a tank or started one from scratch before this one so literally every little thing is automatically a concern to me lol. Luckily I haven’t actually done anything “unusual” to it besides adding the biospira, and that was only because my ammonia was still not going down and I had a feeling that since the tank still looked pristine, it probably had something not going right.

I’m not too worried about the hair algae, I’m just glad the weird yellow stuff isn’t like a disaster coming toward me lol.

I don’t really know what was wrong with the other tank. All I know is it was in terrible condition and I just couldn’t get it right. It was given to me in less than desirable condition to start and I have actually posted about it a lot if you care to take a look. It just was bad. So my fish started acting weird suddenly and I tried to save him by putting him in this tank but I guess it was too late. He may have been sick and maybe I never knew it to help him.

I did find my hermit so I’m glad he’s alive, but he was hiding for many days. I’ve been putting BRS nori in there frequently to feed them so maybe it pushed the algae stuff to Start forming idk. But it’s good to know about the RODI dip. I’ve been given so much info by so many people that I just don’t know what to do sometimes so I will generally follow the advice if I’m told the same thing by more than one person.

I’m worried the inverts and my fish could’ve brought something over despite my Attempts to mitigate it. I’m really hoping not
 
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SaltyShel

SaltyShel

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you need to test for nitrite so you know if your cycle is complete. you should have 0 ammonia 0 nitrite and you want to keep nitrate low under 25ppm. Make sure you have a good test kit. For a test kit I recommend a Hanna Checker or Salifert test kits. At the min you should have Ammonia Nitrite and Nitrate test kits.
Dang that’s good to know thank you. I thought you could just get by without nitrite so I’ll have to definitely go get one. Right now I have Red Sea ammonia and a NYOS nitrate kit
 

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So the yellow stuff is normal and I don’t need to do anything to get rid of it?
I wouldn’t think so. Those white rocks are going to have all sorts of things growing on them when the lights are turned on. It’s just the way nature works.
 
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SaltyShel

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Did you notice anything on the fish when it died spots or anything?
No I didn’t really see anything visually different other than this behavior of course. He was just acting so weird and it was sad to see. I posted something recently when he was dying and I put pics in that post if you wanted to see them or read what was happening to maybe diagnose. If that’s what you’re trying to do
 
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SaltyShel

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I wouldn’t think so. Those white rocks are going to have all sorts of things growing on them when the lights are turned on. It’s just the way nature works.
Okay that makes sense. I guess I thought I could keep it looking perfect but that’s pretty unrealistic considering it’s a literal boxed version of a real habitat that is not perfect lol
 

mcdrichj

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No I didn’t really see anything visually different other than this behavior of course. He was just acting so weird and it was sad to see. I posted something recently when he was dying and I put pics in that post if you wanted to see them or read what was happening to maybe diagnose. If that’s what you’re trying to do
I am by no means a fish medic. When I QT a fish I do a general treatment (copper, Prazipro, and antibiotics). I started doing this because I put 2 clown fish in and they were fine for a month then added another fish and in about a week everything died. Since then I started to QT fish and I havent had any issue.
 

mcdrichj

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Dang that’s good to know thank you. I thought you could just get by without nitrite so I’ll have to definitely go get one. Right now I have Red Sea ammonia and a NYOS nitrate kit
I had a NYOS test kit and it was good. You seem to have decent quality test kits just get a nitrite test kit. For ammonia when I qt I uses an ammonia alert badge so I dont have to constantly test for it. I used carbsea live sand and bottle bacteria (biospira) and use a source of ammonia with no inhabitants in the tank it only took about 1 or 2 weeks for my tank to cycle. It cycled so fast I never saw any nitrites in the tank.
 
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kingoftheHiLLpeople

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No I only have a nitrate and ammonia test kit, I can’t test for nitrite currently. I was told I don’t really need it by a few diff people and LFS so I never got one

since you mentioned it I figure it’s for a reason so… is there something about nitrite you think is causing this? should I get a nitrite kit even if cycled? Idk if it is cycled or not but I think it is based on all I’ve read/watched about cycling
Yea im not sure you are cycled.
 

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So I just read your thread from your sick fish. Personally what I would do at this point is is look into all the things that @Jay Hemdal said because he is a wealth of knowledge and see how long to let the system stay fishless to eliminate anything that you could have introduced into your new system and get new fish and do a medicated QT in a different tank. If my memory serves me correct its somewhere around 90 days (EDIT: it was 72 days but look at the link below where it says 45 days) will starve out most. Keep in mind if you use equipment in something like copper then you cant use it in your main tank. A QT tank needs to be 10' away from your other tank. If you dont have the space you can buy fish already QT'd from someone like Dr Reef. Your other option would be to drain your tank and sterilize it and start over which would take less than 90 days maybe like 4-6 weeks to restart.

I am very big on QT as you can tell. I might not be the best at keeping coral but I'm pretty good at not killing fish. I like to keep my tank free of any kind of fish sickness or parasite and this is the way that is effective for me to keep them in good health.

As a side note Maroon Clowns are quite aggressive especially in a small tank you might want to consider an ocellaris clown or a pair of them.
 
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kingoftheHiLLpeople

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And… to get to the root of the issue - im concerned about your perspective on “pristine” with regards to a saltwater tank. You couldnt imagine the “nasties” in an established tank. Or at least i couldnt before i started researching this hobby. To summarize - i wouldnt fret a change in color of rocks in an immature tank. Your rocks are white - they wont be for long.
 

mcdrichj

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Here is a thread talking about a fishless period. Looks like there is new information. As I stated before I'm more concerned about fish harm than anything I see in your tank. So in light of this information I would let your system sit fishless for 45 - 50 days which should be about the time to QT a new fish. Remember at least 10' distance between tanks to prevent cross contamination.

 
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