Dinoflagellates – Are You Tired Of Battling Altogether?

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ScottB

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What method worked for you
For ostreopsis it is primarily about
a) raising nutrients to 10/.1 NO3 PO4
b) UV 1 watt per 3 gallons, running VERY slow (2X turnover) and just temporarily plumbed TO/FROM the display tank.
c) run GAC to remove toxins
d) Manual removal with floss clamped to glass in high light/flow area. rinse each evening.

2 weeks done. Slower for the other 3 species but same process. LC amphids whole different story.
 
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taricha

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From personal and repeated experience/experiment, I can assure you that OSTREOPSIS at least will bloom hard when dosing AcroPower. Within the next full light cycle and from across the room you can tell it was a mistake. It is the ultimate ostreopsis food source. It is an excellent food source with little/no work involved to capture and process allowing them to multiply exponentially. Other competitors prefer ammonia, nitrates and phosphates.
To add to this, this has been seen in many tanks in this thread and others, that amino acids use precedes an increase in visible dinos specifically ostreopsis. I did acropower in a test tank of mixed algae a few weed corals and a little bit of dinos. Feeding aminos, the algae decreased while the Dinos became dominant. Ostreopsis especially, but also prorocentrum and some small cell amphidinium as well.
Dinos contain all the necessary cell machinery to take in amino acids directly and use them quite well, many other green algae do not respond as well to aminos.
 

Biff0rz

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@ScottB and @taricha thoughts on Red Slime Remover (RSR) aka Chemiclean? I have a lot of cyano and it's not going away. I've been removing it every 2-3 days by blowing off rocks/siphoning. I have also been dosing Microbacter CLEAN for 3 weeks now...it's still there. This is also while reducing feedings, more aggressive skimming, and running GFO. It was suggested to me to use RSR but if I recall, that's how a lot of people end up here. Not going to lie, I'd rather have cyano than dinos (LOL). So to avoid that mistake, can someone use RSR safely and effectively without causing 0 nutrients and a dino outbreak or is it a dino death sentence to use RSR?

Tank is ~8-9mo old, params have stabilized (.08 po4, 15 no3, 8 dKh)
 

taricha

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It was suggested to me to use RSR but if I recall, that's how a lot of people end up here. Not going to lie, I'd rather have cyano than dinos (LOL). So to avoid that mistake, can someone use RSR safely and effectively without causing 0 nutrients and a dino outbreak or is it a dino death sentence to use RSR?

It's not that chemiclean drops nutrients, it's that it kills cyano cold turkey and if there were any dinos in the system, then it's become perfect conditions for them to take over the space.

If you are concerned about dinos (and you are), then I'd just be patient and vacuum up the cyano repeatedly.
 
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Shuladog

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From personal and repeated experience/experiment, I can assure you
From personal and repeated experience/experiment, I can assure you that OSTREOPSIS at least will bloom hard when dosing AcroPower. Within the next full light cycle and from across the room you can tell it was a mistake. It is the ultimate ostreopsis food source. It is an excellent food source with little/no work involved to capture and process allowing them to multiply exponentially. Other competitors prefer ammonia, nitrates and phosphates.

Not all dinos are created equal, but coolia, prorocentrum, and small cell amphids are too closely related to assume they won't prosper similarly. Large cell amphids, well, who the heck knows. Nothing but time and competition seems to help. But your corals are not going to outcompete dinos for this food source. Maybe other competitive organisms will, but I cannot name them.

There are a handful of folks on this thread with years of observation here, and a bizarre interest in this captive nuisance. Over the years, certain treatment themes and observations stick out. There is no shortage of hobbyist experiences from which to draw these unscientific yet anecdotally powerful conclusions.

But hey, you are welcome to give it a try and see what happens. Every tank is different. Let us know what happens.

that OSTREOPSIS at least will bloom hard when dosing AcroPower. Within the next full light cycle and from across the room you can tell it was a mistake. It is the ultimate ostreopsis food source. It is an excellent food source with little/no work involved to capture and process allowing them to multiply exponentially. Other competitors prefer ammonia, nitrates and phosphates.

Not all dinos are created equal, but coolia, prorocentrum, and small cell amphids are too closely related to assume they won't prosper similarly. Large cell amphids, well, who the heck knows. Nothing but time and competition seems to help. But your corals are not going to outcompete dinos for this food source. Maybe other competitive organisms will, but I cannot name them.

There are a handful of folks on this thread with years of observation here, and a bizarre interest in this captive nuisance. Over the years, certain treatment themes and observations stick out. There is no shortage of hobbyist experiences from which to draw these unscientific yet anecdotally powerful conclusions.

But hey, you are welcome to give it a try and see what happens. Every tank is different. Let us know what happens.
Thank you for the explanation. It was suggested by my LFS to dose Phyto Feast. does that fall into the same category?
 

Biff0rz

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It's not the chemiclean drops nutrients, it's that it kills cyano cold turkey and if there were any dinos in the system, then it's now perfect conditions fir them top take over the space.

If you are concerned about dinos (and you are), then I'd just be patient and vacuum up the cyano repeatedly.

Well, I had Dino's and beat them into submission by feeding and bringing nutrients up, oh, and adding a 90w UV. I had osteo so they were gone in a week or so. I'll keep trying to wait it out....blah
 

taricha

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Thank you for the explanation. It was suggested by my LFS to dose Phyto Feast. does that fall into the same category?
not as clearly detrimental. dinos can't ingest phyto directly, but toxic dino mucus can trap phyto and kill pods that are grown by phyto.

slightly negative in my opinion, and from what I've seen.

some may say slightly positive, but nobody reports strong positive effects.
 

Aqua Man

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Not going to lie, I'd rather have cyano than dinos
Same thing going on with one of my tanks. I just finished up a 3 day lights out and did a good water change and cleaning. 90% of cyano is gone.

Lights are going to stay ramped down and blue only for a few more days. Cyano might still come back, we’ll see.
 

Willis19

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not as clearly detrimental. dinos can't ingest phyto directly, but toxic dino mucus can trap phyto and kill pods that are grown by phyto.

slightly negative in my opinion, and from what I've seen.

some may say slightly positive, but nobody reports strong positive effects.
I have stoped amino acids and reefroids. I guess once this is resolve I can restart dosing again ?
 

taricha

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Most people find that restarting aminos shortly after dinos were gone brings them back. More likely you'll have to do other feeding sources for a little while, maybe month+.
But it's like everything else. If you really want, you can go slow and see how your tank responds.
 
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Willis19

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Most people find that restarting aminos shortly after dinos were gone brings them back. More likely you'll have to do other feeding sources for a little while, maybe month+.
But it's like everything else. If you really want, you can go slow and see how your tank responds.
Thank you for the guidance. I will start dosing dino x, last time I did dose red algae control from same brand fauna marine, it did work, it eradicate all algae except dinos lol, I guess I did not follow up the instructions because I was dosing amino acids..... this time I will dose algae x with no reefroids or amino acids. Too bad, because the corals were growing amazing and amazing colours.
 

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ScottB

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@ScottB and @taricha thoughts on Red Slime Remover (RSR) aka Chemiclean? I have a lot of cyano and it's not going away. I've been removing it every 2-3 days by blowing off rocks/siphoning. I have also been dosing Microbacter CLEAN for 3 weeks now...it's still there. This is also while reducing feedings, more aggressive skimming, and running GFO. It was suggested to me to use RSR but if I recall, that's how a lot of people end up here. Not going to lie, I'd rather have cyano than dinos (LOL). So to avoid that mistake, can someone use RSR safely and effectively without causing 0 nutrients and a dino outbreak or is it a dino death sentence to use RSR?

Tank is ~8-9mo old, params have stabilized (.08 po4, 15 no3, 8 dKh)
Agree @taricha comments.

Cyano is the most common transition organism after a dino outbreak. The next phase is some green film, then turf or hair algae. Some time after that things start settling down.

The cyano removal stuff (erythromycin) is only temporarily effective. I actually view as a setback to the return to balance process. It has certainly been my experience and makes some intuitive sense to me anyway.

Lastly, I will suggest that cyano (again, in my experience) is a result of SWINGS in the levels or ratio of NO3 & PO4. Like dinos, they are edge competitors that do well when nutrient levels are noisy, imbalanced, or vanishing (dinos).
 
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Marc2952

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What did you do man !!
Tbh i just let the tank get dirty lol i dosed nitrates to keep it above 10ppm and phosphates at 0.05. Didnt dven clean the glass and it just naturally stabilized. I got some algae as i was dosing phosphates and nitrates but i ordered alot of CUC and made short work of it. Now my nitrates naturally stay between 5ppm and 10ppm. Phosphates dont budge from 0.05.
 

ReefMan692

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I think I am likely dealing with Dino's right now. At first, I honestly couldn't believe it. I feel like my tank is over-stocked (25sh fish in 120 gal) and that I have to feed pretty often (anthias) but I've been pretty light during those "feeds" so while I am feeding 3-4 times a day I am definitely not doing it 'excessively'.

I have had random skimmer troubles ever since upgrading to an eshopps 220 a month or so ago, never been able to get this thing to function well... or at least in my head I was thinking it wasn't. It's quite possible it's been doing it's job too well, though.

Anyways, I started noticing some slimy brown/red stuff on the substrate and even bottom glass sometimes stretching out in a stringy-mat like thing and at first I was thinking it was cyano... but it started to get a little thicker over the course of the past couple of days. Today I noticed it sticking up on the rocks with bubbles and starting to form the "Stringy webs" on some of my corals.

So of course, I'm panicing because what else is there to do at this point?

I personally stopped testing Nitrate/phosphate daily because the readings were always a disappointment and I am already deploying every conceivable measure of nutrient control or at least the ones that I am capable of doing and even with doing GFO + Phosguard I can never seem to get my Phosphates down to near-zero levels. When I started my phosphate crusade they were running around 0.2 and I was having a lot of coral problems. After deploying those measures my corals have been doing much better, but I am worried now (obviously!).


In my mind my overstocked tank that I am feeding often enough would probably never have low nutrient issues. Right?

Right???????

Wrong!

It has been my seemingly never-ending fight with Phosphate removal that leads me to being ever "extra" in my nutrient control. I target the phosphate directly with GFO and Phosguard, I also deploy liquid Phosphate-E and an oversized skimmer but my phosphates always test high (for example, 0.07 today) even with all of those measures deployed.

So what else to do? Of course -- CARBON DOSING! (I am being sarcastic, I am an idiot obviously. Carbon dosing was a terrible idea.) But that does bring us to Today -- I tested after seeing these bad signs and low and behold my Nitrate reading was at 0 on my salifert. Phosphate is still testing around 0.07 (hanna ULR) I've always had trouble with phos and as mentioned I have been battling it heavily -- it was the nitrate issue that crept up on me.

I guess adding daily doses of Carbon (a reasonable amount) and Microbacter7 in my effort to get phosphates down brought me to this place. The excessive skimming, my scrubber, and the carbon dosing all impacted my nitrates more than the GFO/Phosguard/Phosphate-E did the Phosphates although now that I have acquired some experience that is not such a shocker to me really, phosphates are the devils dandriff!

So what to do, what to do?

I had already started a chemiclean treatment yesterday thinking it was Cyano -- but now I'm pretty sure it isn't. I've had luck with chemiclean knocking out cyano rather painlessly so I don't think I'll have hurt anything by doing this although it seems worthless at this point.

I'm a little concerned because Chemiclean calls for a water change tomorrow 20% I don't really want to do it now. Also chemiclean calls for removal of GAC which I usually keep running in my system just for safety reasons but I am concerned with my GAC offline the Dino's might be toxic.

I think I'll bring the GAC back online first thing tomorrow. I don't think my tank has been over-run yet, and although I have been running GAC I can't say for certain if there is any toxicity associated with what I have as my Urchin and snails/hermits seem to be alive (if they eat Dinoflagellates, do they die? Some of them seem to be chowing down).

I have NeoNitro on hand and some Dr. Tim's refresh, I'm thinking about just dosing those two things pretty hard and seeing where it takes me. Stopping carbon dosing entirely, and trying to keep my nitrate elevated, maybe try to find that sweet spot with the redfield equation. What do you guys think? :p
 
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Shuladog

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not as clearly detrimental. dinos can't ingest phyto directly, but toxic dino mucus can trap phyto and kill pods that are grown by phyto.

slightly negative in my opinion, and from what I've seen.

some may say slightly positive, but nobody reports strong positive effects.
Thank you so much for taking the time to respond. I really appreciate everybody that has contributed to my continuing education!

I have stopped dosing Reef Roids. There appears to be much less brown dino growth and I have noticed green algae starting to cover some of my rocks. Is that a good sign?
 
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ScottB

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I think I am likely dealing with Dino's right now. At first, I honestly couldn't believe it. I feel like my tank is over-stocked (25sh fish in 120 gal) and that I have to feed pretty often (anthias) but I've been pretty light during those "feeds" so while I am feeding 3-4 times a day I am definitely not doing it 'excessively'.

I have had random skimmer troubles ever since upgrading to an eshopps 220 a month or so ago, never been able to get this thing to function well... or at least in my head I was thinking it wasn't. It's quite possible it's been doing it's job too well, though.

Anyways, I started noticing some slimy brown/red stuff on the substrate and even bottom glass sometimes stretching out in a stringy-mat like thing and at first I was thinking it was cyano... but it started to get a little thicker over the course of the past couple of days. Today I noticed it sticking up on the rocks with bubbles and starting to form the "Stringy webs" on some of my corals.

So of course, I'm panicing because what else is there to do at this point?

I personally stopped testing Nitrate/phosphate daily because the readings were always a disappointment and I am already deploying every conceivable measure of nutrient control or at least the ones that I am capable of doing and even with doing GFO + Phosguard I can never seem to get my Phosphates down to near-zero levels. When I started my phosphate crusade they were running around 0.2 and I was having a lot of coral problems. After deploying those measures my corals have been doing much better, but I am worried now (obviously!).


In my mind my overstocked tank that I am feeding often enough would probably never have low nutrient issues. Right?

Right???????

Wrong!

It has been my seemingly never-ending fight with Phosphate removal that leads me to being ever "extra" in my nutrient control. I target the phosphate directly with GFO and Phosguard, I also deploy liquid Phosphate-E and an oversized skimmer but my phosphates always test high (for example, 0.07 today) even with all of those measures deployed.

So what else to do? Of course -- CARBON DOSING! (I am being sarcastic, I am an idiot obviously. Carbon dosing was a terrible idea.) But that does bring us to Today -- I tested after seeing these bad signs and low and behold my Nitrate reading was at 0 on my salifert. Phosphate is still testing around 0.07 (hanna ULR) I've always had trouble with phos and as mentioned I have been battling it heavily -- it was the nitrate issue that crept up on me.

I guess adding daily doses of Carbon (a reasonable amount) and Microbacter7 in my effort to get phosphates down brought me to this place. The excessive skimming, my scrubber, and the carbon dosing all impacted my nitrates more than the GFO/Phosguard/Phosphate-E did the Phosphates although now that I have acquired some experience that is not such a shocker to me really, phosphates are the devils dandriff!

So what to do, what to do?

I had already started a chemiclean treatment yesterday thinking it was Cyano -- but now I'm pretty sure it isn't. I've had luck with chemiclean knocking out cyano rather painlessly so I don't think I'll have hurt anything by doing this although it seems worthless at this point.

I'm a little concerned because Chemiclean calls for a water change tomorrow 20% I don't really want to do it now. Also chemiclean calls for removal of GAC which I usually keep running in my system just for safety reasons but I am concerned with my GAC offline the Dino's might be toxic.

I think I'll bring the GAC back online first thing tomorrow. I don't think my tank has been over-run yet, and although I have been running GAC I can't say for certain if there is any toxicity associated with what I have as my Urchin and snails/hermits seem to be alive (if they eat Dinoflagellates, do they die? Some of them seem to be chowing down).

I have NeoNitro on hand and some Dr. Tim's refresh, I'm thinking about just dosing those two things pretty hard and seeing where it takes me. Stopping carbon dosing entirely, and trying to keep my nitrate elevated, maybe try to find that sweet spot with the redfield equation. What do you guys think? :p
Holy moly that is a lifetime's worth of nutrient tools you have going on there:
1) Skimmer. OK that is good.
2) Bacteria additives. OK, maybe it has a purpose sometimes.
3) Lanthanum chloride. Hmm, OK. PO4 at .2 shouldn't be a problem, but the standard dose of LC should drop you to .1 which is probably better. .07 is NOT high at all. For me it is my minimum.
4) GFO and Phosguard. Now we are overdoing it.
5) A scrubber. Definitely getting into biome starvation mode. Only the fittest will survive now. Queue the dinos.
6) Carbon dosing. In isolation carbon is great. In combination with 5 other levers... you can guess my opinion.
7) Chemiclean. This antibiotic will ensure nothing else is left to compete with the dinos.

a) Add the Neonitro. Besides the obvious, your PO4 will likely fall.
b) Put (far) away the MB7, GFO, phosguard, Carbon, Chemiclean, scrubber. Trash the Chemi.
c) Stop dosing LC until PO4 is bumping .2 again.
d) Get a $50 microscope that does at least 400X and post a video (shot through eyepiece) here for species IC and treatment protocol.
 
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