Dino/Cyano/Nutrient Issues HELP!

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Matt Schario

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Hello Everyone,

I have been battling Cyano/Dino/Retracted coral growth issues for the last 3-4 months and I may pull my hair out.

Tank INFO:
Tank - Reefer 350
Skimmer - OCTO 150 SSS
Lights - Reef LED 90 x 2
Powerhead - MP60 + Gyer 4k
Filtation - Cabon filtration
Water Changes - 5-10 gallons per week

Parameters:
Nitrate - 0
Phophate 0.25ish
Ammonia - 0
Nitrites - 0
pH - 8.4
Temp - 81-82
SG - 1.022-1.024

One thing to note is I have tried dissing brightwell phosphate and nitrates and for some reason I havent been able to get the nitrates above 0 and I am adding 5-10 ppm per day. Phosphates have effectively gone up when added and I do see algae growth finally...I know that is hard to say.

Quick overview - Started with Dino’s a few months ago. Did a 3-4 day blackout, water change, filtered and life was good For a bit. Shortly after I had cyano start to breakout and was noticeable on my sand bed along with getting on coral. I upgraded my flow a bit, cut lights, more frequent water changes, cleaning sand bed, and I also used chem-pure but results were iffy. While i did get rid of the cyano I kept reading about 0 nutrients causing issues. I have been dosing and dosing and now I have green glass algae every day and Dino‘s have returned with a vengeance.

Few Questions or thought and if anyone else has any ideas I am all ears!

1. Should I remove carbon filtration?
2. Is my skimmer to large for my system? I never really get a dark skimmate it seems and nutrients are always 0.
3. Should I stay the course and hope the algae outcompetes the dinos or just cut the lights for 3-4 days and continue on?
4. For whatever reason, my corals have always stayed closed up and I cant get them to open up. I certainly knows a lot of it has to do with so many swings in parameters. My anemone on the other hand is a tank and has no issues with whatever I throw at it. Same with all of the fish.


5. If anyone needs photos or has any questions please ask and I will be more than happy to provide Information.

This forum is awesome!

-Matt
 
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xxkenny90xx

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How old is the tank? Did you start with dry rock? Pictures of the tank and the algae would be helpful.

I'd start with ditching the chemical filtration (for now) and maybe turning your skimmer down. Then make sure you have enough fish and fish food in the tank to keep nutrient levels up
 

xxkenny90xx

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Is your phosphate staying up like that or are you continuing to dose it?
 
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Matt Schario

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Hello,

I started with dry Rock In my initial tank which is going on 3 years ago. When I moved I used the same rock when we moved and went to bigger tank I did add some additional dry rock because the volume was larger. This was approximately 1-1.5 years ago.

As for the phosphate and nitrates. For instance I dosed last night to bring my nitrates all the way from 0 up to 20 and today they are back at 0. Same with phosphate I brought them up to 0.5...which I s ridiculous and it is already back at 0. I turned off the skimmer and carbon last night and I am just filtering with the pillow stuffing in the sump. I change that every 2ish days as it was getting clogged with dead Dino‘s when the lights are off overnight. I also am running lights on 100% blue with 10% white which seemed to slow down the dino growth.

Am I wrong in thinking I need to continue this path until my nutrient levels stabilize a bit and doing a water change at this point could be detrimental?

Below are A few photos under 100% white and no blue. Yeah I know the glass and sand is everywhere. I cranked up the solution movement to ensure oxygenation was occurring at the surface since I turned off the skimmer and it created a bit of a sandstorm.

9B9BC172-7E40-46AE-A9AC-A6E03480B23D.jpeg

2994070F-B5AE-4CDA-974E-235F18769782.jpeg

6EAE472B-702C-485A-B416-5926E73121B9.jpeg
 

saltyhog

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Phosphate that high with zero nitrate is a bit unusual. I would recommend dosing sodium nitrate rather than increasing feeding otherwise you will feed the already remarkable NO3/PO4 imbalance.

Can you post a video of your dinos....a proper ID can help tremendously on deciding how to proceed. UV is not effective on many dino species. It would be a shame to spend all that money on a treatment that is doomed to fail.
 
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vetteguy53081

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Easier to do this than playing with levels and add this and add that:
First- Check phosphates and nitrates to assure theyre not elevated.
Here is full program:
Prepare by starting with a water change and blow this stuff loose with a turkey baster and siphon up loose particles.
Turn lights off (at least white and run blue at 10-15%) for 5 days and at night dose 1ml of hydrogen peroxide per 10 gallons for all 5 nights. If you dont have light dependent coral- turn all lights off.
During the day dose 1ml of liquid bacteria (such as bacter 7) per 10 gallons.
Clean filters daily and DO NOT FEED CORAL FOODS OR ADD NOPOX as it is food for dinos.
Day 5,, you can start with blue lights - ramping up and work your white lights up slowly
 

xxkenny90xx

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Phosphate that high with zero nitrate is a bit unusual. I would recommend dosing sodium nitrate rather than increasing feeding otherwise you will feed the already remarkable NO3/PO4 imbalance.
The op is dosing po4 up that high and it is dropping back down to 0. So I figure extra feeding would be good
 
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Matt Schario

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Correct, the phosphates and nitrates continued to bottom out over and over again and both were bumped up on dosing.
 

saltyhog

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Correct, the phosphates and nitrates continued to bottom out over and over again and both were bumped up on dosing.

That's very strange. PO4 can definitely be absorbed by rock but not NO3 that I know of. How long after you dose do you test and find levels that high?
 
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Matt Schario

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I don’t know if this helps but here is the livestock:

Diamond watchman goby
yellow tang
blue hippo tang
4 chromies
flame angel
2 occ clowns
pajama fish
Longfin bannerfish

sand sifting starfish
various snails that came from reefcleaners that was sized per tank.
2 x turbo snails
2 bubble tip anemones. Was 1 but split and seems to still be doing well...

corals I haven’t gone crazy because well they just keep going south. Just have a GSP that really doesn’t seem to care what I do... Chalice, zoa Which has retracted, along with a paly that isn’t doing so well. The torch is retracted and acro at the top is barely hanging on. Ive got some random coral at the bottom that a friend gave me but I forget the name. :O
 
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Matt Schario

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Salty, when I add the dosing up to say 20 ppm, I let it mix for about an hour and check and its right on par with what I put in. However, when I check it 24 hours later it goes back to 0. That is for both phosphates and nitrates.
 

Dan_P

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Hello,

I started with dry Rock In my initial tank which is going on 3 years ago. When I moved I used the same rock when we moved and went to bigger tank I did add some additional dry rock because the volume was larger. This was approximately 1-1.5 years ago.

As for the phosphate and nitrates. For instance I dosed last night to bring my nitrates all the way from 0 up to 20 and today they are back at 0. Same with phosphate I brought them up to 0.5...which I s ridiculous and it is already back at 0. I turned off the skimmer and carbon last night and I am just filtering with the pillow stuffing in the sump. I change that every 2ish days as it was getting clogged with dead Dino‘s when the lights are off overnight. I also am running lights on 100% blue with 10% white which seemed to slow down the dino growth.

Am I wrong in thinking I need to continue this path until my nutrient levels stabilize a bit and doing a water change at this point could be detrimental?

Below are A few photos under 100% white and no blue. Yeah I know the glass and sand is everywhere. I cranked up the solution movement to ensure oxygenation was occurring at the surface since I turned off the skimmer and it created a bit of a sandstorm.

9B9BC172-7E40-46AE-A9AC-A6E03480B23D.jpeg

2994070F-B5AE-4CDA-974E-235F18769782.jpeg

6EAE472B-702C-485A-B416-5926E73121B9.jpeg
I am having a difficult time reconciling the rapid loss of nitrate and the not so heavy growth of algae on the rocks. Are you confident about the nitrate reading?

Was the PO4 consumption high since the aquarium was set up?
 
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Matt Schario

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I have always struggled with low nitrates and phosphates. I fell into that trap I guess where I thought it was the best way to run, however I finally hit that dreaded spot where dinos developed or were introduced and ive been battling. I have only recently started dosing po4 and nitrates.

Am I wrong in thinking I need to keep filtration/skimmer off and continue to dose nitrates and phosphate until it finally evens out And maintains? I am assuming I will get algae growing everywhere but. It will outcompete everything else?
 

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Just so I'm sure I'm understanding it correctly....you dose NO3 calculated to achieve 20 ppm and an hour later test and the result is 20 ppm. Then 24 hours later it's zero? I'm completely stumped. I've never heard of anything like this. If you had an ATS or a tremendous amount of green algae I could start to understand but it doesn't sound like you do. Wish I had something smart to say.

I would say if you have a refugium empty it, take your skimmer cup off (or turn it off) and maybe start dosing twice a day?
 
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Matt Schario

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My phosphates and nitrates stayed put last night and through morning. As soon as I turn on lights dinos start forming. I turned them all off today. Thinking no skimmer, 3-5 day blackout, change filter every day.
Sjould I add microbacter7 and dose with peroxide? And keep phosphates and nitrates up?
 
AS

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Went through a similar issue, still have Dino’s in the 20peninsula .
The last almost 3 months dosing NeoPhos and NeoNitro - Po4 from 0 to over .153ppm and nitrates from 0 to 20ppm and back down the next day. 2.5ml NeoPhos at morning and night. Had some luck with broadcasting reef roids to keep Po4 up hitting around .23ppm and then when I thought I had it I’m back at 0 a few days later.

The bottles say if you’re showing zero after 24 hours you need reef biofuel. After almost using 70 Hanna tests for phosphate I’m just getting tired of this.

I’ve had 50lbs of this figi rock since 2011, I’ve heard of phosphate leeching, not complete depletion...
 
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