Did Par Test - Am I supernova'ing this tank?

Turd Ferguson

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Curious for some input on the PAR readings of my tank.

I've a 250W (14k Phoenix) above my 40G IMO External (24"L x 24"W x 19"H), sitting about 8" off the waters surface, 7 hour photo period. Since making the transition from T5 I've noticed the LPS and soft corals struggling therefore borrowed a Par Meter from the LFS to get a better idea of how much light I'm hitting the tank with.

Par output, roughly,

Bottom: 250 - 275
Middle: 350 - 450
Top: 600 - 700

Since I've hanged from x4 T5, the SPS which previously seemed rather dormant have come to life although the LPS such as a frogspawn and branching hammer seems to be suffering. The polyps are not as expanded as they usually are, some recession of polyp but they seem to bounce back after a couple of days.

My mushroom corals were doing very poorly, so much that they'd dismount from the rock, float away or move. I've put them in a shady area and things are looking up. Torch coral loves the light (bottom 1/4 of tank), and SPS now have polyp extension and growth. Acans are also shaded and seem fine. Most of the soft and LPS are in the lower 1/4 or 1/3 portion of the tank.

SPS that were dull, now have polyp extension and are colouring up. They currently sit in Middle region of the tank. So in this regard I'm pleased and expect continued growth.

15 Years ago I had x2 150W MH & PC combo over 75G...back then I wasn't too concerned about par, more light the better, blast the tank, if it looked good, continue. I was able to grow everything, SPS, LPS, softies..after year two the tank pretty much exploded with growth. I've read a number of posts, watched video's on PAR but mostly it's relating to LED or T5 fixtures, and the par levels seem far lower than what I'm hitting the tank with.

So my question is, am I blasting the tank with too much light? Once the SPS gets near the top of the tank (top 5-6"), I've measured as much as 800 par (with flow on) No issues with temperature or evaporation. Should I expect issued once the SPS grow towards the top?

Should consider that going forward, the tank will be SPS dominant, and toss the Euphyllia and mushrooms...

Alternatively, can one put a 150 DE bulb in a 250W fixture (Hamilton Cayman Sun)..knowing I'd have to change the ballast for 150W?

Thanks
 
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ScoobyFish

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Yes you are. No need for anything over 500 and thats on the higher end of the spectrum. Save money on your enery bill too.
 

Bronc

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Make sure you have plenty of nitrates with all of that light.
 
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Turd Ferguson

Turd Ferguson

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Make sure you have plenty of nitrates with all of that light.
Why so? My nitrates are 0. The corals do seems to be suffering. confusing as many years ago back When MH were popular I wouldn’t think my par ratings abnormal.

I’m wondering if part of the reason the corals, hammers, acro, are suffering is because they are aquacultured, many times over while15 years ago most coral came straight from the ocean? OST of the frags I’ve purchased were being kept under very blue LED lighting. Some corals do great, say encrusting corals, frogspawn etc.. sufferers torch loves the MH.
 
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Saltyreef

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Agreed with BRONC.

Higher light warrents higher nutrients and alk level from what ive gathered....
 

rtparty

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Lol these answers...you're totally fine since you have a quality light in halide and T5s. LEDs would roast everything because the quality just isn't there.

Many of us ran 500-1000 and even higher for years with no issues. All the sudden LEDs come on the scene and corals can't take high PAR. It's odd to say the least. There are so many pieces out there that love 500+ PAR. My hammers, frogspawn, micromussa, blastos and more "low light" corals all are thriving at 250+ PAR. Some sitting at 365 last I checked
 

Jekyl

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I've never had halide but zero nitrate is definitely hurting you. May want to get it around 5 to 10 and see how they react.
 
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Turd Ferguson

Turd Ferguson

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Latest pic.

A week ago I switched out the MH for T5 and with the tank only being 9 months old I send a water sample out for a ICP. Maybe it’s water quality causing poor coral health/death Because there was a time the hammers were thriving, now not so much...and after about a week I can’t say things have really improved. I’m also running my old H&S skimmer which is rated for far larger tanks.. maybe I’m over skimming .no measurable nutrients...which some have said is a issue, although 15-20 years ago we all ran low nutrient systems with halides. But to be honest...my last tank got to the point where everything grew like weeds, I did the occasional water test, fed rotifiers and live food...and stopped checking g parameters...it was on auto pilot.

the MH pendant 8” off the water, 7 hour light cycle.
 

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