How not to start a reef tank, my first reef tank build

Which light should I upgrade to after coral qt is done?

  • 2x ai prime

    Votes: 5 50.0%
  • Reefbreeders 24 in. Photon v2

    Votes: 2 20.0%
  • Stick with current orbit USA marine

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Viparspectra 165w

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  • 2x hipargero 30w

    Votes: 1 10.0%
  • Other

    Votes: 1 10.0%

  • Total voters
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  • Poll closed .
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living_tribunal

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Correct I'm not debating that but sometimes things in tank, like algae will deplete these and render the test useless or tell you that you have zero when you do have some. Like I said I'm not familiar with tracking or keeping phosphate in check yet. Haven't tested. I don't want to give you bad advice that's why I'm not telling you to do anything but stop chasing phosphate but after your explanation it makes sense what you're saying.
I think Randy would be of great help here, hopefully he'll chime in when he gets that ping from the @ I used.
Maybe #reefsquad could help out too?
He’s corresponded on a few questions but I’m still so new to this hobby and would appreciate an approach. I appreciate your help as well and I hope I’m not coming off as dismissive. I’m just scared that I could lose a lot of corals and crash my tanks diversify.
 

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This thread is very long and hard for anyone to gey a sense of whats going on...
Can you start a new thread with all pertinent info together so we can try to help?
 
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living_tribunal

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living_tribunal

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I never sent shots of the corals I picked up yesterday from the frag fest, so here you go. The crazy favia I got didn’t take the hydrogen peroxide dip too well but I’m sure he’ll bounce back.

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Best reef aquarium LED lighting
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living_tribunal

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My tank straight up needs some Prozac.

Trying to maintain stability in a new tank is no joke. I’ve been heavily feeding in combination to dosing phosphates to get my rock to bind more. I must have fed too much which stirred up a bacterial bloom.

I added some fritz turbostart (you can never keep enough turbostart around the house) and purchased a larger uv sterilizer. The benefits from the uv sterilizer in my frag tank were fantastic, especially in eliminating Dino’s. I just needed an excuse to make the purchase for my display.

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living_tribunal

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On a happier note, my acan is finally popping a new head. I also have another candy cane head splitting and my orange digitata is branching it’s first new fork. Will send pics when the water clears up.
 
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Quick update, my display tank is for sure under a full fledged Dino bloom. To make matters worse, I still haven’t been able to find how much phosphate I need to dose per day in order to be at an equilibrium.

The only think I can think of is to ramp up the phosphate dosing even higher. I’ve been dosing .035ppm 3 times a day but it still hits zero pretty quick.

I’m worried that soon I’ll be dosing far too much each day.

Hoping I figure something out very soon.

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did you start with dry rock?

It looks like you did. That tank doesn't look like it has low phosphates due to the type of algae that is growing.

I am of the thought that dry rock goes through algae stages and sometimes people get straight to coralline and sometimes people get 15 different kinds of nasty algae then coralline.
 
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living_tribunal

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did you start with dry rock?

It looks like you did. That tank doesn't look like it has low phosphates due to the type of algae that is growing.

I am of the thought that dry rock goes through algae stages and sometimes people get straight to coralline and sometimes people get 15 different kinds of nasty algae then coralline.
That’s not algae, that’s Dino. I did start with dry rock but my phosphates are undoubtedly zeroing out every day. I’m using a hanna phosphorous ulr and have tested it against standards and my tank after dosing many times.

This is definitely Dino caused by unmeasurable phosphate levels from what I believe to be the phosphate binding to the rock.
 
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And here's the Miami hurricane chalice I got back in April
(Sorry bad photo, I'll get a better one tomorrow)
It's finally starting to look good!!
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The first two look like echinatas. All of them look amazing though.

I purchased a couple of echinatas in that first batch purchase I made starting off. They are... bland at best.
 
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I've been too active in other threads and have forgotten to post updates here. A lot has gone on in the past two weeks, will be sending pics tomorrow.
 
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Just a catch up post, quite a lot has gone on in the past two weeks.

First, I have been making a lot of coral purchases. 45 days in qt kind of makes me feel like I need to knock it out. Might as well call it crack and hand me a pipe at this point.

Here are a few of my recent purchases, they all came from local hobbyists and Texas Coral Fest.
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I have been looking for more of a challenge and that last wilsoni caught my eye from a hobbyist in my local mas.

So naturally, I traded my sump for him.

As you can see, he’s not in the best of shape and is quite bleached. Reading up on wilsonis, it looks like most people don’t have much success with them. There’s overall not much about symphyllia wilsonis (now known as Austrlophyllia) so I can understand the lack of success.

I decided to look at where they originate to gain a better understanding of their care requirements.

These corals are the only ones us normal hobbyists take care of from the Indian Ocean. They live among lagoon kelp forests where water are murky, flow is slow, and nutrients are very rich.

Furthermore, the coral is a very very slow growing coral. Many are able to care of theirs with “success” for many months before tissue recession kicks in and the bleaching slowly (as in months) intensifies.

I believe the main issues people run into with this coral is they are depriving their system, and this coral, of the nutrients required to sustain it.

Lucky for this wilsoni, I run an lps dominate tank and feed them like it’s thanksgiving... every single day.

Additionally, these corals thrive in colder temps (~74 F).

My goal is to lower my tanks temps to 76 over the coarse of a month or so. I also have a nice shaded spot for him on my sand bed.

Other than that, he’ll receive my standard coral diet: daily aminos (reef energy a+b) with alternating feeding of phyto, oyster feast, coral frenzy pellets, and royds daily (one of these a day and then onto the next one).


I’m pretty amped and if I’m successful in rehabilitating him, he’ll be a major showpiece that was worth the investment.
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Last piece of news, which is a continuation of the phosphate deprivation mystery saga.

I filled you in on why it was happening, what I was doing to handle it, and why I was trying to prevent it.

Sadly, my worst fear happened and my display had a major Dino bloom.

I caught it relatively early and handled with my typical protocol.

We’re all Gucci now but there are some bubbles still forming on rocks. I’m hopeful my uv is successful in neutralizing so that algae can grow.

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