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Help! Corals Dying

5280Reef

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I made a recent post on my bridsnest dying and realized that my Zoas aren't opening up either. Recently added about 6 new corals a couple days ago - One being a large Monti that is getting some large white streaks in it and a new birds nest that has already lost its green pigment in 3 days. I've never dosed my tank, but just took a measurement yesterday and looks like my ALK is hovering around 6.6 right now and I think that was why they first birds nest has been dying. Only other corals in the tank before the new add were a candy cane, Xenia, and hammer which were all doing well. I'm assuming ALK didn't effect those much, but the birds nest was.

Long story short - I think I need to do a major adjustment to ALK even though the tank has historically ran low ALK numbers (the tanks only been up for 6 months or so) to see if I can revive my first birds nest and keep the new additions happy before they die off. Full tank parimeters are below;

ALK: 6.8 DKH (measured yesterday)
CAL: 450 (measured yesterday)
MAG: 1400 (measured yesterday)
Nitrate: 0
Nitrite: 0
Phos: 0
PH: 7.5

Question - Assuming that ALK is the problem here, what is the best way to do a correction to get it up (assuming around 9DKH should be the target) and I'm also assuming I need to start doing. Should I do a correction then start a two part dose? I don't have a doser, so I'll have to get one but can if it's necessary. I was going to measure ALK again today at 5p (full 24 hours) to measure any changes then do a water change and measure again.

Thoughts?
 
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5280Reef

5280Reef

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Also, keep in mind that my ALK has always been sub 7, I just never put much thought into it until now after spending much more time researching levels as I was previously directed to just do weekly water changes. Thinking about it, I first started using Reef Crystals and changed to Tropic Marin Pro about 3 months ago and I think that's when ALK really took a plunge.
 

SPR1968

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Your alkalinity is on the low side and taking into account test error could be worse, or of course better

I would go for a target of around 8-8.5dKH as that gives you a bit more ‘wiggle room’

The pH is on the very low side but I would test that again maybe with a different kit before you take any action there.

Your water is also completely sterile at zero nitrate, so no coral food, so maybe add more fish to increase that level and feed them. I don’t have an issue with zero phosphate (it’s probably not) it’s just very low which is good.

In the meantime maybe add some Red Sea reef energy or reef roids to feed the corals.
 
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5280Reef

5280Reef

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Here is my history of all ALK tests I've done.

4/10: 6.16 (I believe during my cycle no corals)
4/12: 6.72
4/21: 7
4/30: 7.56
5/25: 6.72
7/13: 7
8/12: 7
9/19: 6.3
9/28: 6.86
 
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5280Reef

5280Reef

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Your alkalinity is on the low side and taking into account test error could be worse, or of course better

I would go for a target of around 8-8.5dKH as that gives you a bit more ‘wiggle room’

The pH is on the very low side but I would test that again maybe with a different kit before you take any action there.

Your water is also completely sterile at zero nitrate, so no coral food, so maybe add more fish to increase that level and feed them. I don’t have an issue with zero phosphate (it’s probably not) it’s just very low which is good.

In the meantime maybe add some Red Sea reef energy or reef roids to feed the corals.

PH has always been monitored by an APEX, my history for the last 7 days is showing a minimum of 7.12, average of 7.49 and a maximum of 7.82.

I've never fed my corals. Looking into that also and stumbled across reef chili if that's any good? I feed frozen food once every other day to my two clowns and recently added a small yellow tang about a month ago that I feed algae sheets to once every other day.
 
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5280Reef

5280Reef

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if nitrate and phosphate are truly zero then that's also an issue. corals need some nutrients in the water in order to grow.
I use Red Sea test kits - I've noticed the foundation is simple and pretty accurate, but I use their normal PH4 and Nitrates testers which are much harder to read. Seems as if they only track large changes, it worked during my cycle but now the differences are subtle, so I normally just mark it as 0 since it's so close to that. Should I pick up another tester?
 
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5280Reef

5280Reef

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I'm assuming if they really are 0 and I start feeding the corals it should raise those levels again. I've read that reef roads can cause an algae outbreak. Saw Photo is also an option, but don't know much about that. Is there a pro/con to something like reef chili vs phyto?
 

leepink23

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I keep my alkalinity around 7.2-7.5 with no issues. I would recalibrate that ph probe to make sure it’s accurate, if so your ph is definitely low. I would be worried about 0 nutrients. Have you tested your salinity?
 
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5280Reef

5280Reef

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I keep my alkalinity around 7.2-7.5 with no issues. I would recalibrate that ph probe to make sure it’s accurate, if so your ph is definitely low. I would be worried about 0 nutrients. Have you tested your salinity?
I recently recalibrated the probe, so it should be accurate. Isn't it a pretty big jump from 7.2-7.5 down to 6.8 though? I test salinity weekly with my water changes and keep it at about 1.026.
 

anthonygf

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I use Red Sea test kits - I've noticed the foundation is simple and pretty accurate, but I use their normal PH4 and Nitrates testers which are much harder to read. Seems as if they only track large changes, it worked during my cycle but now the differences are subtle, so I normally just mark it as 0 since it's so close to that. Should I pick up another tester?
NYOS test kit for nitrates is good, I manually dose Alkalin8.3-P by Brightwell Aquatics, feed fish more. What size tank and equipment do you have?
 

Biglew11

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I use Red Sea test kits - I've noticed the foundation is simple and pretty accurate, but I use their normal PH4 and Nitrates testers which are much harder to read. Seems as if they only track large changes, it worked during my cycle but now the differences are subtle, so I normally just mark it as 0 since it's so close to that. Should I pick up another tester?
i use the red sea pro for nitrates and the hanna ulr for phosphates.
 
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5280Reef

5280Reef

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NYOS test kit for nitrates is good, I manually dose Alkalin8.3-P by Brightwell Aquatics, feed fish more. What size tank and equipment do you have?
I have a RSR 250, so it's a 65 gal. Current equipment is below;

- Neptune Apex
- RSK-300 skimmer
- 1 Tunze 6025
- Varios 2 return
- AquaMaxx reactor with carbon
- 2 AI Hytdra 26
- 1 Cobalt heater
 

anthonygf

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I have a RSR 250, so it's a 65 gal. Current equipment is below;

- Neptune Apex
- RSK-300 skimmer
- 1 Tunze 6025
- Varios 2 return
- AquaMaxx reactor with carbon
- 2 AI Hytdra 26
- 1 Cobalt heater
I have a 46 gallon bowfront with 30 gallon sump, about 60 gallons total. I test almost daily, dose alk manually daily to maintain around 8.3dkh, run skimmer 12 hours a day at night. Feed my fish twice a day 2 clownfish, 2 striped damsels, Flame Hawk, Yellow Tang, File fish, 7 inch clam, many corals and CUC's. My nitrate maintained between 5-12, phosphate 0.18-0.03 dose phosphate Rx occasionally, 5 gallon water change weekly using Fritz, was having trouble with IO/RC and just switched. Tank been running for 4 years now. Hope this info helps you. My clown's are now expecting. :)
 

Mhart032

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If it were me.. Id turn the skimmer off completely till i saw signs of the corals bouncing back. Id start with dripping kalkwasser or add it to the top off if you have an auto top off. stat to bring up PH and ALK and keep the stable. then move into 2 part via a doser when the kalk cant keep up with the uptake of alk being used by the corals. Not skimming will feed the corals assuming you have fish? I keep my alk at 7.30- 7.50 zero nitrates and p04 at .00- .03 but i run full zeovit so ultra-low nutrient is the name of the game for me.

lastly, I would suggest reading everything you can on microbiology as it pertains to reef tanks, it will give you a big jump start I recommend Coral Reefs in the Microbial Seas by Forerst Rohwer, its really a very quick read and ton of good information.
 

anthonygf

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PH has always been monitored by an APEX, my history for the last 7 days is showing a minimum of 7.12, average of 7.49 and a maximum of 7.82.

I've never fed my corals. Looking into that also and stumbled across reef chili if that's any good? I feed frozen food once every other day to my two clowns and recently added a small yellow tang about a month ago that I feed algae sheets to once every other day.
I'm not sure about reef chili but get the refrigerated phytoplankton at your LFS, Phyto Feast is the one I use.
 

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