Conquering STN/RTN. What has worked for you?

Ftrain576

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I would like to hear from those who have dealt with STN for a period of time, and what you did to finally get a handle on it, or completely eradicate it from your their tanks, if that is at all possible. My tank has been up for a little over 2 years, and my STN issues started 4 months ago. I have had the ICP tests done that showed nothing out of line, made sure all parameters are in line with for an sps tank and kept stable. Still the STN continues. Should I just wait it out, or just go for a re-boot of the tank. Hence the title…. What has worked for you? Thanks guys.
 
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Ftrain576

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Was just wondering what I have to look forward to. How long before the STN stops if there is even a set time to wait. To those who have gone through this, what did you do?
 

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I had some STN in my frag system a while back. It was very gradual -- almost imperceptible -- STN from the base. So slow that coralline would cover up the base while the rest of the stick would keep growing. Over time though, the pattern became obvious. I keep damsels and wrasses as predators but I guess they can't get to the bugs around the base and center. Only the upper branches.

Some stick keepers here concluded it was bugs, tegastes acroporanus. White bugs. Honestly, I can't tell the difference between good pods and bad ones, but base STN is the tell. I did the 3 X interceptor treatment which seems to have gotten them under control for a good while now.
 
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Ftrain576

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I had some STN in my frag system a while back. It was very gradual -- almost imperceptible -- STN from the base. So slow that coralline would cover up the base while the rest of the stick would keep growing. Over time though, the pattern became obvious. I keep damsels and wrasses as predators but I guess they can't get to the bugs around the base and center. Only the upper branches.

Some stick keepers here concluded it was bugs, tegastes acroporanus. White bugs. Honestly, I can't tell the difference between good pods and bad ones, but base STN is the tell. I did the 3 X interceptor treatment which seems to have gotten them under control for a good while now.
Did you treat the whole frag system, or individual frags?
 
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Ftrain576

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I should have clarified my question. I was pretty much asking those who were dealing with STN for a period of time what the final outcome was for them. Did they treat the tank or just do a re-boot of the tank, starting from scratch.
 

ScottB

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Did you treat the whole frag system, or individual frags?
Interceptor is a whole tank treatment. Crabs and shrimp should be removed. If you cannot catch them before dosing, you should be able to within a few hours of dosing as they are stunned. It will do a number on your pod population.

There is a fair amount of bother involved with doing this, so I would try to rule out other factors. Just getting a prescription for it took me weeks.

Coral, fish and water parameters all do fine. Most of the professional acropora aquaculture folks do this every 3-4 months or so.
 
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Unfortunately over the course of the last 4 months I lost the majority of my montiporas, acros tenuis. After I noticed the infection on a coral, I would just pull it out of the tank. I’ve tried the Triton STN/RTN-X prodocts following the ICP N-Doc recommendations without success, and am currently on my second round of the Brightwell Aquatics Koral Recover treatment.
 

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There's no magic one size fits all remedy for TN. It's a reaction to a stress event. It could one thing or a combination of things. It's not a simple matter of saying get your water chemistry or parameters in order and it won't happen. Even with things stable it could still suddenly occur and wipe everything out. Not everything that triggers stress in a reef tank is testable.

Iodine/ witch hazel antiseptic bath to lessen the microbial load on the stressed corals. Place affected specimens in a quarantine tank with strong circulation, clean seawater and activated carbon. Leave the main system 'fallow' for now.
 
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Ftrain576

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There's no magic one size fits all remedy for TN. It's a reaction to a stress event. It could one thing or a combination of things. It's not a simple matter of saying get your water chemistry or parameters in order and it won't happen. Even with things stable it could still suddenly occur and wipe everything out. Not everything that triggers stress in a reef tank is testable.

Iodine/ witch hazel antiseptic bath to lessen the microbial load on the stressed corals. Place affected specimens in a quarantine tank with strong circulation, clean seawater and activated carbon. Leave the main system 'fallow' for now.
Gotcha…I will continue to do my best with the tank husbandry, and keeping things as stable as possible. By fallow do you mean minus fish and coral?
 

cleopt

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Gotcha…I will continue to do my best with the tank husbandry, and keeping things as stable as possible. By fallow do you mean minus fish and coral?
Keep the system fallow of SPS for now that is until you can identify what triggered the stress and remedy or lessen it. Definitely look into a quarantine tank, so if you get back to SPS and something triggers TN, you can remove and isolate them from the main system.
 
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Ftrain576

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Keep the system fallow of SPS for now that is until you can identify what triggered the stress and remedy or lessen it. Definitely look into a quarantine tank, so if you get back to SPS and something triggers TN, you can remove and isolate them from the main system.
Thanks for the info. I don’t have many SPS corals left, so setting up the QT won’t be a problem moving forward. what would be the time frame of keeping the main tank fallow?
 

cleopt

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There's no definite timeframe. Try it for several weeks, then when you get back to SPS, introduce one or two at a time, like cheap 'tester' frags and observe how they react. If signs of stress reaction or RTN shows up again be prepared to give them an antiseptic bath with iodine and/or witch hazel in a separate container with strong water flow and clean, cool seawater and then relocate them in a quarantine tank.

The antiseptic bath is meant to slow down, halt the bacteria involved in the shutdown reaction (TN) of the weakened coral due to stress. The cause of the stress will still need to be mitigated.

The quarantine tank should have strong water flow and activated carbon. It should be a size where it's easy enough to remove and replace all the water with clean seawater if necessary, established biological filtration.
 
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I just went through a massive RTN event and it was from over feeding and forgetting about the amount of detritus that built up. I am doing 20% water changes every week and only gravel vacuuming or cleaning the sump not just pulling water out of the water column and replacing it. Everything that is still alive is bouncing back strong. I went from feeding my fish once every 2-3 days to multiple times a day, i was not used to the amount of build up it caused.
 
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Ftrain576

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There's no definite timeframe. Try it for several weeks, then when you get back to SPS, introduce one or two at a time, like cheap 'tester' frags and observe how they react. If signs of stress reaction or RTN shows up again be prepared to give them an antiseptic bath with iodine and/or witch hazel in a separate container with strong water flow and clean, cool seawater and then relocate them in a quarantine tank.

The antiseptic bath is meant to slow down, halt the bacteria involved in the shutdown reaction (TN) of the weakened coral due to stress. The cause of the stress will still need to be mitigated.

The quarantine tank should have strong water flow and activated carbon. It should be a size where it's easy enough to remove and replace all the water with clean seawater if necessary, established biological filtration.
Thanks again.
 

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If your coral is Stn I normally cut as many frags as I can cut and throw out the rest

I don’t think it’s preventable, it’s almost like saying what prevents cancer in people. We know but you can still do everything right and get it If you going to keep sps make sure the flow is very strong. If detritus can accumulate near the base even if coral is growing it will not make it long time

a happy sps will not only grow but the base of the coral will spread
 

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I would like to hear from those who have dealt with STN for a period of time, and what you did to finally get a handle on it, or completely eradicate it from your their tanks, if that is at all possible. My tank has been up for a little over 2 years, and my STN issues started 4 months ago. I have had the ICP tests done that showed nothing out of line, made sure all parameters are in line with for an sps tank and kept stable. Still the STN continues. Should I just wait it out, or just go for a re-boot of the tank. Hence the title…. What has worked for you? Thanks guys.
I used brightwell koral recovery and brightwell restor. This helped when I experienced an algae bloom that caused my tank to turn cloudy. My sps didn’t make it. I switched the remaining corals which were LPS and put them in my other tank dosed one capful of each and my lps and softies who were showing signs of STN and RTN grew back. They are still in rehab and lost it’s beautiful red color. But they are expanding as per usual and are progressively getting its color back.
 
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