High Phosphate, Low Nitrate

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yanni

yanni

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Ratios are, IMO, a fundamentally flawed way to think of nutrients and I have never recommended them.

That said, I think your valuess are perfect.

I recommend 2-10 ppm nitrate and 0.03 to 0.1 ppm phosphate as desirable ranges, with above those ranges better than below.
Ahh perfect. So in that sense, I’m well in the clear! I still worry abt the GHA, probably just a new tank issue rather than nutrient issue? I’m going to increase my CUC over the next month which hopefully helps that
 

EricR

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Ahh perfect. So in that sense, I’m well in the clear! I still worry abt the GHA, probably just a new tank issue rather than nutrient issue? I’m going to increase my CUC over the next month which hopefully helps that
Just my one experience with GHA:
- GHA at about 6-8 month mark after tank transfer
- All GHA was infesting my one rock pile that started as dry rock,,, never a speck on my other live rock structure
- Aggressive, manual removal for a month or two got me through it and now haven't seen any in many months
- Coincidentally, had switched salts and my magnesium slowly came up from always low 1200s to now always high 1400s,,, calcium increased also
*only mention last bullet because I've read suggestions that increasing Mg could help but not sure

My CUC never seemed to help when there was a lot of GHA (((pincushion urchin, turbo snails, etc)))

P.S. your NO3/PO4 look great to me
 
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Just my one experience with GHA:
- GHA at about 6-8 month mark after tank transfer
- All GHA was infesting my one rock pile that started as dry rock,,, never a speck on my other live rock structure
- Aggressive, manual removal for a month or two got me through it and now haven't seen any in many months
- Coincidentally, had switched salts and my magnesium slowly came up from always low 1200s to now always high 1400s,,, calcium increased also
*only mention last bullet because I've read suggestions that increasing Mg could help but not sure

My CUC never seemed to help when there was a lot of GHA (((pincushion urchin, turbo snails, etc)))

P.S. your NO3/PO4 look great to me
My CUC are so lazy haha. They love film algae, my lawnmower loves GHA when it’s little tufts, and the turbos make a decent go at it. Getting some stomatellas and micro brittle stars this week, so will see how that shakes it up.

my tank is only 2 months old, but rock is roughly 6-7 months old from barrel baking, so that checks out on the timeline. Just going to keep aggressively removing it by hand haha, slowly watching coralline begin take up real estate which will def help. My mag is high 1300s usually so I think I’m good on that front, any higher and I notice my snails start acting lethargic

thanks mate, I think I got too caught up “chasing numbers,” gonna keep doing what I’m doing, coral growth is insane and nems are happy, what more could I ask for :) (all pics before I manually removed most of the algae haha)

ECFE47CA-A57F-448E-9F35-6EE31FC17976.jpeg 16AC2AA7-1FA5-4554-BC43-69495BFA8ECC.jpeg 62DAE335-9E25-42A0-B055-7092E8BEF4A4.jpeg
 

EricR

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Can't tell what's growing on the sand from the picture.
I went with well-rinsed new/dry sand during tank transfer and never had anything on the sand,,, but I vacuum a good portion as my water change plus have nassarius snails, tiger sand conch, etc ... so they probably do some of the sand work also.
 
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Can't tell what's growing on the sand from the picture.
I went with well-rinsed new/dry sand during tank transfer and never had anything on the sand,,, but I vacuum a good portion as my water change plus have nassarius snails, tiger sand conch, etc ... so they probably do some of the sand work also.
It’s just some GHA that managed to clump on the sand. I’m going to get some more sand sifting snails, and hopefully the micro brittle stars help a bit….going to start vacuuming the sand as well. I usually manually stir it, but a good vacuum never goes astray
 

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I found a small tuft of GHA about the size of a nickel in my overflow (clinging to the emergency overflow pipe) when I was cleaning it out a month or so back, but that's about it. Between the CUC, tangs and parrotfish - they make short work of anything that looks even remotely edible.
Pretty much blowing my mind w/ having your Nitrates over 30 ppm and phosphates at .1-.15 having success w/ SPS as my nitrates are around 24 ppm and phosphates at .03 and I'm trying to figure out a way to get my phosphates back up to .08 and nitrates to 10-12ish for LPS tank (I enjoy writing run on sentences in forum apparently).
 

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Pretty much blowing my mind w/ having your Nitrates over 30 ppm and phosphates at .1-.15 having success w/ SPS as my nitrates are around 24 ppm and phosphates at .03 and I'm trying to figure out a way to get my phosphates back up to .08 and nitrates to 10-12ish for LPS tank (I enjoy writing run on sentences in forum apparently).
I run GFO and Zeo in reactors as well (change out every 2 months), along with an ozone system.
 

Alexander1312

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Rock and sand does both, depending on whether it is holding more phosphate than is in equilibrium with the level in the water, or less.

It essentially buffers (i.e., holds back/reduces) any upward or downward changes in phosphate (not nitrate).
Randy, could this be the reason I am not seeing a decrease in phosphate despite using GFO for a few weeks now? I started using GFO about 3/4 weeks or so ago trying to bring down my phosphate from 0.33 to 0.1 or potentially lower, but I it only dropped very little and remains persistent at 0.26/0.28 (Hanna). I am almost exclusively feeding frozen food once a day and only dry food once a week. Not sure where else the phosphate would come from. Nitrates are between 5 and 7.
 

Randy Holmes-Farley

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Randy, could this be the reason I am not seeing a decrease in phosphate despite using GFO for a few weeks now? I started using GFO about 3/4 weeks or so ago trying to bring down my phosphate from 0.33 to 0.1 or potentially lower, but I it only dropped very little and remains persistent at 0.26/0.28 (Hanna). I am almost exclusively feeding frozen food once a day and only dry food once a week. Not sure where else the phosphate would come from. Nitrates are between 5 and 7.

It is likely part of the issue, but you may just be using enough GFO replaced often enough to offset the additions, and not drop it further.

Can you use more or replace it more often?
 

Crustaceon

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Man... your tank is doing really well aside from the GHA. I would be hesitant to hammer it over and over again with frequent water changes and risk shocking your corals. Personally, I'd just add a few turbo snails and wait it out.
 

Alexander1312

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It is likely part of the issue, but you may just be using enough GFO replaced often enough to offset the additions, and not drop it further.

Can you use more or replace it more often?
Thank you, I will do that. I had Dinos until a month or more ago, potentially because of too aggressive carbon dosing in a new tank, and I tried not to bottom out nutrients again by overdosing GFO. I was just surprised not to see phosphate dropping in a meaningful way after using GFO and your statement clarified the reasons for me. Thank you.
 

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