Could someone please help me identify this algae, the cause, and the solution?

mindme

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Looks like diatoms to me. They will die off naturally once the silicates in the aquarium run out.

GHA will be next, so the advice given in this thread is good.
 

daybreaksky

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ok, if I put in a refugium within the next couple of days, can I prevent GHA?

So the way refugium works is you put macroalgae in it usually Chaetomorpha. it absorbs nitrates and phosphates from the water column before the hair algae can. So yes it will help. It will not eliminate hair algae, everyone has it and you will have to pull it out with your hands or a spoon with a hose. It's part of your tank biosphere. the key is to controll it so it won't smother corals or look like you have a planted tank lol

When you see pictures of absolutely beautiful tanks, usually the owner has pulled algae, vacuumed the sand, cleaned the glass etc before taking a pic :D
 

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I would test nitrates and phosphates before you add a refugium. Since the tank is newer with very low bioload, if you end up lowering nutrients too much you may cause a much worse outbreak like dino's. I would take diatoms any day of the week.

I suggest get some CUC like trochus and cerith snails and a conch (fighting concch or strawberry conch) to eat the diatoms and the algae that comes later.
 
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sdubler

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I would test nitrates and phosphates before you add a refugium. Since the tank is newer with very low bioload, if you end up lowering nutrients too much you may cause a much worse outbreak like dino's. I would take diatoms any day of the week.

I suggest get some CUC like trochus and cerith snails and a conch (fighting concch or strawberry conch) to eat the diatoms and the algae that comes later.
I am getting more fish, inverts, and corals on saturday. Do you think I will still be able to do a refugium? I already have chaeto on the way.
 
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sdubler

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So the way refugium works is you put macroalgae in it usually Chaetomorpha. it absorbs nitrates and phosphates from the water column before the hair algae can. So yes it will help. It will not eliminate hair algae, everyone has it and you will have to pull it out with your hands or a spoon with a hose. It's part of your tank biosphere. the key is to controll it so it won't smother corals or look like you have a planted tank lol

When you see pictures of absolutely beautiful tanks, usually the owner has pulled algae, vacuumed the sand, cleaned the glass etc before taking a pic :D
yeah. Do you know the cause of GHA?
 
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Bfragale

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Hello there,

Green hair algae can be many types of algea. In my experience this is in all tanks but not noticeable on most because of clean up crew and keeping parameters in check. The reason I came to this conclusion is this: I do not see any in my main display which has Tangs and a decent size clean up crew.

I recently set up a frag tank. I took a few things out of display and places in frag tank. (Frag tank has no clean up crew or algae eaters) all the items I pulled from main tank immediately started growing GHA. Once I added a clean up crew and some saltwater acclimated mollies- the gha went away. This leads me to the conclusion that a good clean up crew is the difference from seeing gha or not seeing it.

The frag tank is 30 gal + sump. I added 4 small hermit crabs, 2 turbo snails, one small Urchin, and two Mollies. This seemed to solve my issue. But mollies are not as good as tangs lol. They do pick at algae off rocks and stuff but not like a tang.

Hope this helps.
 
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sdubler

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Hello there,

Green hair algae can be many types of algea. In my experience this is in all tanks but not noticeable on most because of clean up crew and keeping parameters in check. The reason I came to this conclusion is this: I do not see any in my main display which has Tangs and a decent size clean up crew.

I recently set up a frag tank. I took a few things out of display and places in frag tank. (Frag tank has no clean up crew or algae eaters) all the items I pulled from main tank immediately started growing GHA. Once I added a clean up crew and some saltwater acclimated mollies- the gha went away. This leads me to the conclusion that a good clean up crew is the difference from seeing gha or not seeing it.

The frag tank is 30 gal + sump. I added 4 small hermit crabs, 2 turbo snails, one small Urchin, and two Mollies. This seemed to solve my issue. But mollies are not as good as tangs lol. They do pick at algae off rocks and stuff but not like a tang.

Hope this helps.
Perfect! I am planning to go to my lfs tomorrow — it is TSM Aquatics if you are familiar with it. Do you think I can still do a refugium? With all the new animals coming in?
 

SMSREEF

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I am getting more fish, inverts, and corals on saturday. Do you think I will still be able to do a refugium? I already have chaeto on the way.
Be cautious adding too much stuff all at once. Slow and steady is best.
Test your nitrate and phosphate when you are at the LFS. 0 for either is not good for a new tank.
I love my fuge, but I started it too early. I had to take protein skimmer out, and dose nitrate and phosphate so my coral and macroalgae are happy.
But, if you have a small ball of chaeto and not too long of a light schedule, maybe you will be fine. Each reef tank is so different.
 
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sdubler

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Be cautious adding too much stuff all at once. Slow and steady is best.
Test your nitrate and phosphate when you are at the LFS. 0 for either is not good for a new tank.
I love my fuge, but I started it too early. I had to take protein skimmer out, and dose nitrate and phosphate so my coral and macroalgae are happy.
But, if you have a small ball of chaeto and not too long of a light schedule, maybe you will be fine. Each reef tank is so different.
Ok. I am planning on adding a fish, some inverts, and 2 or 3 soft corals — I ordered a golf ball size of chaeto. Maybe, I’ll just put it in the back chamber then wait a week or two to add the light inso it doesn’t reduce the phosphates and nitrates too much. Do you think I’ll be fine off with that?
 

SMSREEF

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Ok. I am planning on adding a fish, some inverts, and 2 or 3 soft corals — I ordered a golf ball size of chaeto. Maybe, I’ll just put it in the back chamber then wait a week or two to add the light inso it doesn’t reduce the phosphates and nitrates too much. Do you think I’ll be fine off with that?
I would give it some light. Golf ball size is not gonna do much to your levels. Just limit the light to 8 hours.
 
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sdubler

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Ok. I think I am

Ok. My nitrates are a bit high though. Will it help a bit? Once it gets bigger it will help more, correct?
Will it keep the little amount of algae I have now under control though? Without going the extra mile and making it worse in some cases?
 

SMSREEF

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Ok. I think I am

Ok. My nitrates are a bit high though. Will it help a bit? Once it gets bigger it will help more, correct?
Yes. Bigger will use more nitrate. But you need phosphate too, and elements like iron.
Any 1 that is missing will make it so chaeto doesn’t grow and won’t lower nitrate.

water changes can help to make sure you have enough iron and other elements. Feeding should keep phosphate above 0.


Will it keep the little amount of algae I have now under control though? Without going the extra mile and making it worse in some cases?
Maybe, maybe not. Heck diatoms grow on macroalgae. But you are getting a CUC that will eat diatoms, and as long as you make water with RODI, the silica diatoms need will be used up and their numbers will decrease.

here is a pic of one of my snails eating diatoms off my macroalgae.
957C14EA-790E-47A2-85FB-626D578F5D7C.jpeg

the circled red is diatom
8ADAFD24-D858-4016-A5A3-1F929F6BA9B5.jpeg
 
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sdubler

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I am going to list my conclusion plan — Thank you all so much for the great information. I will keep you all updated.
 
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daybreaksky

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You got to slow down. Sometimes less is more. Just add the critters and fuge, do water changes at 10% a week. Measure ammonia , nitrites, nitrates after adding critters. Monitor Ca and Alk. Monitor ph. Don't start dosing stuff, you will end up with a mess.
Fish poop will add necessary stuff and then some from them eating food.
 

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