Help with white, stringy, fluffy algae

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BurtMacklin

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Tank is 6 months old. 65 gallon with 20 gallon sump and about 40lb live rock, 40lb live sand, two black phantom clown fish, two Bangaii Cardinals, one Tail Spot Blenny, one Royal Gramma, 2 peppermint shrimp, 3 hermit crabs, 10 turbo snails, 2 nerite snails, 2 cerith snails, 3 zoas, 1 radioactive palythoa, and 1 Duncan.

I had none of this type of algae until this week when my return pump unexpectedly died. I had minimal flow for a couple days until I could get a new pump installed and this stuff exploded. It's even growing in the dark in the sump. I also normally dose live phytoplankton, but unfortunately ran out right when this happened and it's back ordered at least a week. Normally the phytoplankton out competes nuisance algae/bacteria. I cleaned off the surface of all the rocks yesterday and did a 15% water change and it's all back again today. I have not been dosing calcium. I'm using a Kessil AP9X, but it has been off for the last 36 hours.

Any help on what it is and what I can do to get rid of it would be helpful. Images and video below.

SALIFTER TESTS
NH3: 0
pH: 8.0
KH: 10.2
Ca: 400
Mg: 1200
PO4: 0

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AS
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BurtMacklin

BurtMacklin

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Hmmmm. Do you dose anything else (carbon source)? It doesn't look like an algae to me, maybe bacterial? Do you have access to a microscope?

Hopefully one of the guys have encountered this before.
No carbon dosing. Instant ocean reef crystals for the coral. I do have access to a microscope, I can take it in tomorrow. I'm worried about bacteria too.
 
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BurtMacklin

BurtMacklin

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I also recently (a week ago) had mold growing on the rim of my DT and sump... I cleaned it off and sanitized the surfaces with alcohol, but I'm worried it's the same in the water now. If it is, what do I need to do?
 

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BurtMacklin

BurtMacklin

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Had a chance to go into the lab and use a microscope, but unfortunately didn't have a 40x objective or stains. I brought a sample in to put it on slides, but it was difficult to spread. I may need to get a better sample and try again when I can fix it to a slide, but I did get some images. There were a lot of these branching structures, some of which had a bulb head.

Bonus videos of copepods and what looks like a spirochete for fun.

#reefsquad
@saltyhog
@NowGlazeIT
 

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NowGlazeIT

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If this is bacteria then I’m hoping an algae or micro fauna will develop to consume it. Let’s talk about that mold dude it looks serious. Is there water sprinkling or misting anywhere out of the sump? Creating moister or high humidity? What is your stand made out of? Tell me about your equipment and filtration, do you use filter socks or pads? How often are they replaced? Do you have any thing like disinfectant sprays or insect repellent going on nearby. Could you be using baby wipes to clean the evaporation lines? I’m starting to think that something went foul or some sort of contaminates made its way in the tank. This could be a result of the water trying to work through it.
 
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If this is bacteria then I’m hoping an algae or micro fauna will develop to consume it. Let’s talk about that mold dude it looks serious. Is there water sprinkling or misting anywhere out of the sump? Creating moister or high humidity? What is your stand made out of? Tell me about your equipment and filtration, do you use filter socks or pads? How often are they replaced? Do you have any thing like disinfectant sprays or insect repellent going on nearby. Could you be using baby wipes to clean the evaporation lines? I’m starting to think that something went foul or some sort of contaminates made its way in the tank. This could be a result of the water trying to work through it.
Ha yeah it looked bad, but it's gone now. I think there had been a little on the inside top rim of the DT for a little while, but I thought it was salt. I've since wiped it away and sprayed it all with alcohol and it hasn't come back. I'm also installing moisture absorbing bags under the sump.

The stand is made of wood and particle board. Filtration is a protein skimmer cleaned weekly, sponges rinsed in RODI weekly (occasionally longer), bio balls with 50% changed out every 2 months, carbon in a filter sock bag. Not specifically running water through filter socks because I have copepods in the tank. I should have some more live phytoplankton here next week and I hope that helps.
 

NowGlazeIT

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Okay that’s great info to go on. Only red flag I got was the moister bags and bio ball replacement every two months. I think it’s going to take some time to reestablish a balance here that works, so let’s keep the bio media in the sump to age and only replace any mechanical and chemical filtration as it depletes. For what it’s worth I have 3-4 year old marine pure balls in my sump.
My balls have gone from white to brown and I don’t plan on swapping them out unless they go black or close to that.
I’m starting to get the notion that things may be too clean in your tank haha sounds weird but when a tank is too clean, bad bacteria or nuisance algae can take better hold then things like coralline algae. At six months of age the tank is young and with replacing bio media it’s even younger. Give it time and I think we’ll phase this out.
 
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BurtMacklin

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Add some more bio media in the sum. In hopes that it will suck up what’s going on in your display
Just checked and I actually replaced half of the gallon bag of them 3.5 months in. I took that half gallon out and added another gallon. Those have been in there since early April, so maybe not as bad as I made it sound. There isn't much room left in the sump for extra filtration. I haven't added the moisture removing bags yet since they just arrived. Did you think those were a good idea or not?
 

NowGlazeIT

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Just checked and I actually replaced half of the gallon bag of them 3.5 months in. I took that half gallon out and added another gallon. Those have been in there since early April, so maybe not as bad as I made it sound. There isn't much room left in the sump for extra filtration. I haven't added the moisture removing bags yet since they just arrived. Did you think those were a good idea or not?
For the moister bags I just worry that you need them in the first place. If humidity down there js too high and getting on the wood then dripping back into the sump, that’s an issue.
the bio balls your using are plastic correct? How many pounds of rock do you have in the display and what kind of rock or where did you get it. I’m still thinking you may need more surface area for beneficial bacteria to colonize.
 
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For the moister bags I just worry that you need them in the first place. If humidity down there js too high and getting on the wood then dripping back into the sump, that’s an issue.
the bio balls your using are plastic correct? How many pounds of rock do you have in the display and what kind of rock or where did you get it. I’m still thinking you may need more surface area for beneficial bacteria to colonize.
30-40lb of reincarnated rock, 40 lb live sand.

Bioballs are these.
 
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