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Boomer's IM 20G Nano

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boomeraudio

boomeraudio

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I must say, this new pump is working wonders. Tank hasn't been this clear since I set it up 8 months ago. I don't even have the skimmer up and running yet (arrived with non-working pump). Awaiting replacement pump.

Things are looking up. Positive vibes!

Thanks for all the help along the way. Will continue to update as I make new coral additions once this skimmer is up and running for a couple weeks.

IMG_4172.JPG
 
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boomeraudio

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Hi al! Quick update for everyone. Been a couple weeks.

Protein skimmer is up and running and the new pump works awesome.

I was able to get the nitrates down to to 2ppm through water changes and will continue to do them weekly.

My main issue right now is algae. I can’t seem to get rid of it. The pictures below are less than one week from a clean tank. I also have more clean up crew too. I’m not sure what to do.

I ordered NO POX to see if that helps because at this point I’m at a loss. Nitrates are down. New pump, UV Sterilizer, Protein Skimmer...just doesn’t make sense. Any ideas?

55D83092-BED6-4F67-928F-DD7470697CAB.jpeg

A6A803A2-D3DF-49D9-A595-81346769A658.jpeg

B7737F20-F424-4F31-9F43-85A83D476D49.jpeg
 

Cambrian Reef

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How long are you running your lights daily? How often are you feeding your fish. How much if any direct light from the windows does the tank get?
 
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boomeraudio

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How long are you running your lights daily? How often are you feeding your fish. How much if any direct light from the windows does the tank get?
I run my light from 8a hour ramp up to 5p hour ramp down. Here’s the schedule:

D56F3D49-B209-4BAA-BDCF-F74A612B8634.png


I’ve been feeding once every other day right now. The bio load isn’t very high. 2 clownies and a shrimp.

Tank gets no direct sunlight.

I would say I’ll do a blackout bu every time that light comes back on it seems to cause algae again. Not sure why...
 
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boomeraudio

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Maybe try an emerald crab?
I have a bunch of blue legged hermits and snails I just re upped as well. NO POX coming this week too.

Your rocks still look new. I would say give your tank time to mature and try not to panic and make any sudden changes.
Tank is roughly 9 months at this point. Started with dry rock. Sand was live but has algae growth too. Is it just me or have I seen other tanks that are 3 months old with beautiful frags in them? I just feel like I’m doing something wrong.
 

TheShrimpNibbler

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Tank is roughly 9 months at this point. Started with dry rock. Sand was live but has algae growth too. Is it just me or have I seen other tanks that are 3 months old with beautiful frags in them? I just feel like I’m doing something wrong.
I know exactly how you feel, and unfortunately, I don’t have an answer as to whether you’re doing something wrong. Hang in there though, I’m sure things will go your way before too long.
 

reef-rc

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I can't tell from the pictures but the algae looks normal. Is it hair algae or something that you are concern?

if your parameters are aligned and lights are in the good spectrum than you seem to be on the right course.
 
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boomeraudio

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I can't tell from the pictures but the algae looks normal. Is it hair algae or something that you are concern?

if your parameters are aligned and lights are in the good spectrum than you seem to be on the right course.
It's hair algae - or so it seems. Just can't seem to have any nice tank time without it and my clean up crew isn't doing anything about it either haha. Any advice on how to keep it under control? It's on the rocks and in the sand...
 
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It's hair algae - or so it seems. Just can't seem to have any nice tank time without it and my clean up crew isn't doing anything about it either haha. Any advice on how to keep it under control? It's on the rocks and in the sand...
Astrea snails will mow everything down, I promise you that. Bought 6 of em and let me tell you, the tank is almost spotless. I also decreased my white light as well, but well on my way to having a GHA free tank. Now to deal with the hermetid snails

also for the sand I use the tube off my gravel vac and siphon the top layer every week so hair algae hasn’t had a chance to grow in the sand since
 

reef-rc

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It's hair algae - or so it seems. Just can't seem to have any nice tank time without it and my clean up crew isn't doing anything about it either haha. Any advice on how to keep it under control? It's on the rocks and in the sand...
Usually when I have something like this with my tank, I usually go back to basic and ensure I cover / check:
  • Is my RODI water good? My RODI filtration system - does it need filter replacement or something like that. This for me has lead me to chasing my tails a couple times.
  • Check your parameters. 2ppm is nitrate is good. I did noticed from a quick glance, you had high 40+ nitrate previously which may still be running it's course even though it's now much lower. Time and regular maintenance will balance out if that's the case.
    Check your phosphate just to be sure it's within range.
  • Your tank looks to be very close to a window. Limit natural light if possible. I have my 190 12 feet from an open window and know that it may have some impact on algae growth.
  • Continue your routine maintenance and pull or suck those algae out if possible during water change.
  • I assumed you are using some form of filter pads in your rear chambers, if so, check on them and replace them when it gets dirty. That will help remove excess waste without having to put your hands in the tank too much.
    With my Fusion 20,I have media rack on each side and have lined them with small filter pad on each shelf. I usually have to replace mine every 2-3 days (but mine is a loaded tank so your mileage will vary)
  • I could not tell what lights you are using. I would try to keep the lights more on the blue. That will help with algae growth as well.
  • If you already have snails...that's great. If you don't or need additional, consider Trochus Snail. It'll save you time and potentially money compare to other snails (they flip themselves back if turned over).

Those are the things I would consider checking and routinely I would do if that was tank. From what I can see from pics, your tank looks relatively normal and with a consistent routine and regularly checking the tank, it will look great. HTH
 

LeftFootedJedi

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I’ve only been in the hobby for about 6 months, but have experienced the same problems w/my 20G. For what it’s worth, it easily became an exercise of Who’s on First & was beyond frustrating. Add more CUC, no, not that snail.. this one. It’s the ugly phase leave it alone. Turn your lights off, dim the whites, feed them less.. or more. It’s hair algae.. no dinos.. or cyanos.. but to the layman’s naked eye how many look EXACTLY the same?? Well to this one, how about a lot of them, and how great is it that each one has a different treatment plan? Is it red or brown.. does it have spots? Somewhere in that 500 pg algae thread, someone mentioned using a microscope to ‘know’ your enemy and that hit home.

Buy yourself a decent microscope.. I bought a $ 20 one and got exactly what I paid for. A picture of some glob that looked like nothing on this board, no one was able to identify & is now lost in the depths of the algae section of this forum. Big mistake on my part, but bottom line, identify it. That probably would have saved me a lot of time & money. Do I want to spend $ 50 - $ 100 on a scope I’ll never use again.. no. But let’s face you’ve probably already spent that and will double or triple it hoping you get lucky & stumble on the solution.. which is what you are doing now.. like myself & many before you. Once you get pics of it, post them on the algae section of the board, there are a few guys that live & breathe this stuff that can help identify it. Once that happens, you are well on your way to getting it resolved.


What worked for me.. well, I had that brownish/red muck that clumped up my substrate & looked like a little bit of everything!! After nothing seemed to work (see below), I opted to choke it out. So here is my timeline starting a month ago.



  1. Reduced my whites down to about 5%
  2. After leaving it alone for several weeks thinking it was diatoms, I had enough and manually removed the most infected areas.. about 3 lbs of sand. Turkey blasting did nothing as it was in clumps. I then added about 10lbs of live sand as my substrate was thin in some areas. I have about 22-23 lbs of sand now, give or take.
  3. I then used Chemi-Clean (no impact)
  4. I added Dr Tim’s Waste Away (no impact)
  5. I added Vibrant (no impact)
  6. Took out 4 pieces of dry rock out that I had just put in a month prior (hmm?) from my garage to hold my coral. It seems like the ‘muck’ was permeating from those areas, but my existing rocks was as clean as a virgin before prom night. I thought the rock was fine as it was in a tied up plastic bag.
  7. I then tried the hydrogen peroxide treatment on that rock in my quarantine tank as a test, I’ll let you guess what happened.. NOTHING!
  8. Beyond frustrated, I went to LFS to find an algae eater and started talking shop w/the owner & other hobbyist. Turns out they had the same problem at one point, could not identify it and eventually went nuclear, removing their entire scape & substrate after several failed treatment methods. They freely admitted this was not the smartest choice, but with 20+ yrs of experience and no viable solution, they saw no alternative. The LFS owner also mentioned another frustrated customer w/the same problem and he kept reducing their feedings to the point of starvation. He commented on something I also read, that it’s a common misconception to reduce feedings. Overfeeding poses it’s own problems, but you do need competing bacteria to eliminate the nutrients the algae is thriving on. Hmm…
  9. I thought that made sense & before going nuclear, this would be my last straw. So I added two more hermits to my existing CUC to help w/the added food and upped my feedings to daily. Like you I was also feeding every other day. My current CUC is now 6 hermits & 3 snails (2 standard blue, 2 blue knuckle (electric), 1 red & 1 zebra, 1 large nassarius & 2 turbos)
  10. 2 wks later, and with weekly dosings (I’m alternating between Dr. Tim’s & Vibrant), my substrate looks like it did day 1.
In hindsight, my problems started w/adding rocks from my garage thinking they were ok and not properly identifying the algae when I 1st noticed it. Who knows, it was probably an underlying issue that had yet to surface. I should have bought a better scope.. identified it once & for all and implemented a very specific plan. I didn’t and I spent more money in the end. Looking back, it seems like I had a healthy population of diatoms, dinos and cyanos… which partially explains my frustration & confusion.

Sorry for the loooooooong post, but I hope this helps.
 
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boomeraudio

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I’ve only been in the hobby for about 6 months, but have experienced the same problems w/my 20G. For what it’s worth, it easily became an exercise of Who’s on First & was beyond frustrating. Add more CUC, no, not that snail.. this one. It’s the ugly phase leave it alone. Turn your lights off, dim the whites, feed them less.. or more. It’s hair algae.. no dinos.. or cyanos.. but to the layman’s naked eye how many look EXACTLY the same?? Well to this one, how about a lot of them, and how great is it that each one has a different treatment plan? Is it red or brown.. does it have spots? Somewhere in that 500 pg algae thread, someone mentioned using a microscope to ‘know’ your enemy and that hit home.

Buy yourself a decent microscope.. I bought a $ 20 one and got exactly what I paid for. A picture of some glob that looked like nothing on this board, no one was able to identify & is now lost in the depths of the algae section of this forum. Big mistake on my part, but bottom line, identify it. That probably would have saved me a lot of time & money. Do I want to spend $ 50 - $ 100 on a scope I’ll never use again.. no. But let’s face you’ve probably already spent that and will double or triple it hoping you get lucky & stumble on the solution.. which is what you are doing now.. like myself & many before you. Once you get pics of it, post them on the algae section of the board, there are a few guys that live & breathe this stuff that can help identify it. Once that happens, you are well on your way to getting it resolved.


What worked for me.. well, I had that brownish/red muck that clumped up my substrate & looked like a little bit of everything!! After nothing seemed to work (see below), I opted to choke it out. So here is my timeline starting a month ago.



  1. Reduced my whites down to about 5%
  2. After leaving it alone for several weeks thinking it was diatoms, I had enough and manually removed the most infected areas.. about 3 lbs of sand. Turkey blasting did nothing as it was in clumps. I then added about 10lbs of live sand as my substrate was thin in some areas. I have about 22-23 lbs of sand now, give or take.
  3. I then used Chemi-Clean (no impact)
  4. I added Dr Tim’s Waste Away (no impact)
  5. I added Vibrant (no impact)
  6. Took out 4 pieces of dry rock out that I had just put in a month prior (hmm?) from my garage to hold my coral. It seems like the ‘muck’ was permeating from those areas, but my existing rocks was as clean as a virgin before prom night. I thought the rock was fine as it was in a tied up plastic bag.
  7. I then tried the hydrogen peroxide treatment on that rock in my quarantine tank as a test, I’ll let you guess what happened.. NOTHING!
  8. Beyond frustrated, I went to LFS to find an algae eater and started talking shop w/the owner & other hobbyist. Turns out they had the same problem at one point, could not identify it and eventually went nuclear, removing their entire scape & substrate after several failed treatment methods. They freely admitted this was not the smartest choice, but with 20+ yrs of experience and no viable solution, they saw no alternative. The LFS owner also mentioned another frustrated customer w/the same problem and he kept reducing their feedings to the point of starvation. He commented on something I also read, that it’s a common misconception to reduce feedings. Overfeeding poses it’s own problems, but you do need competing bacteria to eliminate the nutrients the algae is thriving on. Hmm…
  9. I thought that made sense & before going nuclear, this would be my last straw. So I added two more hermits to my existing CUC to help w/the added food and upped my feedings to daily. Like you I was also feeding every other day. My current CUC is now 6 hermits & 3 snails (2 standard blue, 2 blue knuckle (electric), 1 red & 1 zebra, 1 large nassarius & 2 turbos)
  10. 2 wks later, and with weekly dosings (I’m alternating between Dr. Tim’s & Vibrant), my substrate looks like it did day 1.
In hindsight, my problems started w/adding rocks from my garage thinking they were ok and not properly identifying the algae when I 1st noticed it. Who knows, it was probably an underlying issue that had yet to surface. I should have bought a better scope.. identified it once & for all and implemented a very specific plan. I didn’t and I spent more money in the end. Looking back, it seems like I had a healthy population of diatoms, dinos and cyanos… which partially explains my frustration & confusion.

Sorry for the loooooooong post, but I hope this helps.
I appreciate the feedback and help! I started with dry rock, so it could just be part of the cycle. Going to stay patient. It's not out of control and I'm not opposed to brushing it off during water changes. Also started dosing NOPOX. Hoping for the best! I'll keep everyone updated.
 
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boomeraudio

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Usually when I have something like this with my tank, I usually go back to basic and ensure I cover / check:
  • Is my RODI water good? My RODI filtration system - does it need filter replacement or something like that. This for me has lead me to chasing my tails a couple times.
  • Check your parameters. 2ppm is nitrate is good. I did noticed from a quick glance, you had high 40+ nitrate previously which may still be running it's course even though it's now much lower. Time and regular maintenance will balance out if that's the case.
    Check your phosphate just to be sure it's within range.
  • Your tank looks to be very close to a window. Limit natural light if possible. I have my 190 12 feet from an open window and know that it may have some impact on algae growth.
  • Continue your routine maintenance and pull or suck those algae out if possible during water change.
  • I assumed you are using some form of filter pads in your rear chambers, if so, check on them and replace them when it gets dirty. That will help remove excess waste without having to put your hands in the tank too much.
    With my Fusion 20,I have media rack on each side and have lined them with small filter pad on each shelf. I usually have to replace mine every 2-3 days (but mine is a loaded tank so your mileage will vary)
  • I could not tell what lights you are using. I would try to keep the lights more on the blue. That will help with algae growth as well.
  • If you already have snails...that's great. If you don't or need additional, consider Trochus Snail. It'll save you time and potentially money compare to other snails (they flip themselves back if turned over).

Those are the things I would consider checking and routinely I would do if that was tank. From what I can see from pics, your tank looks relatively normal and with a consistent routine and regularly checking the tank, it will look great. HTH
I'm thinking that part of the issue could be old filtration in my RODI unit. I am going to pick up all new filters for the next change and see how that goes. I'll also brush everything out during the water change. Otherwise, just steady dosage of NOPOX for a couple weeks and we'll see how it goes. So far, it seems like the NOPOX and additional CUC is working - 2 days into it.
 

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