Mushroom with Mesenterial Filaments out

Jackmot

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Hey!
So, a few months ago I purchased my first coral. A pulsing Xenia that came with 2 hitchhiking mushrooms (Probably discosomas). 3 days ago the bigger mushroom started to show it's mesenterial filaments for a few minutes and today it did it again for a few hours.
I've been struggling with a lot of things in the tank recently (including a broken sump, a light malfunction and a power outage in just 2 weeks) but everything's been coming back really well.
The mushroom in question actually moved itself to it's current location which is just beneath my pulsing xenia. I'm wondering if the Xenia itself is making the mushroom "upset" and this is why it's showing it's filaments (the xenia looks great for the moment) or if it's something else.
Also, today I added a little bit of Kh buffer just before the filaments incident, maybe this is the reason?

My parameters are not excellent, especially my PO4 and NO3 which still show 0 on the tests but I've made some changes to start to get them up and it seems like it's working.
Salinity: 1.025 (Refractometer)
Ammonia: 0 (API test kit)
Nitrite: 0 (API test kit)
Nitrate: 0 (API test kit) (I've been struggling a lot with my low nutrients)
Alkalinty: 7.5-8.0 (I've been dosing some Kh buffer every other day to get it closer to 8.0)
Phosphate: 0 (Salifert test kit) (I've been struggling a lot with my low nutrients)
Calcium: around 410 (A bit low also)

Pulsing xenia
Mushroom corals
Green star polyp
3 Mexican turbos
Small ball of chaeto in the sump

PS: the first photo is a FEW MONTHS OLD and the other two are TODAY

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MaxTremors

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Are you dosing the KH buffer powder straight to the tank? I would recommend using a quality 2 part instead of the KH Buffer, you want to add alkalinity balanced with calcium. Also, I wouldn’t trust any API test result, the dkh being between 7.5 and 8 doesn’t really tell you anything, the number, so long as it’s in range, doesn’t really matter, what matters is that it’s stable, there’s a lot of room for fluctuation between 7.5 and 8.
I wouldn’t worry too much about the mesenterial filaments, it’s a sign of stress, but if it was dying, it would just melt/disintegrate, mushrooms can be drama queens and put them because a hermit accidentally brushed up against it.
 

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Xenias don't sting or anything. They defend themselves from other corals entirely by growing too fast to be killed off.

You really need those nutrients up, or those corals are going to die off. Soft corals need nutrients, but all corals will die of no nutrients. You might just want to start dosing nutrients directly.
 
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Jackmot

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Yeah, I've been working hard on getting them up but as I understand nothing happens in this hobby fast (I'm still a newbie around here so I could be wrong). What would you guys do additionally to improve the overall health of the tank?
Is it possible that the nutrients are not showing on the test only because these are being consumed at a very fast rate? Isn't the algae growth a sign of nutrients starting to build up in the tank?
The mushroom looks like of large. Can you say how large it was fully spread out?

Two of mine just started doing this. One split into two new mushrooms, the other looks like it is splitting into three.
It was maybe 3cm large, The mushroom does seem to have 2 "mouths" so I thought that it was going to split into a new one but so far nothing. Could this be the start of it??
Xenias don't sting or anything. They defend themselves from other corals entirely by growing too fast to be killed off.

You really need those nutrients up, or those corals are going to die off. Soft corals need nutrients, but all corals will die of no nutrients. You might just want to start dosing nutrients directly.
This may be a dumb question but how would you dose the nutrients? is there any specific bottled product you recommend?
Are you dosing the KH buffer powder straight to the tank? I would recommend using a quality 2 part instead of the KH Buffer, you want to add alkalinity balanced with calcium. Also, I wouldn’t trust any API test result, the dkh being between 7.5 and 8 doesn’t really tell you anything, the number, so long as it’s in range, doesn’t really matter, what matters is that it’s stable, there’s a lot of room for fluctuation between 7.5 and 8.
I wouldn’t worry too much about the mesenterial filaments, it’s a sign of stress, but if it was dying, it would just melt/disintegrate, mushrooms can be drama queens and put them because a hermit accidentally brushed up against it.
I've been using the AquaForest Kh buffer which is a powder that you need to dissolve in some RODI first
What would happened if the calcium where to go even lower?
I'll happily perform another test of Kh at night in order to give you a specific number :)

THANKS FOR THE AWESOME AND FAST RESPONSE GUYS!!
 

Tired

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Algae growth means only that pest algae is getting enough nutrients to grow. If no nutrients are testing, that means very little to no nutrients are available to your corals. Soft corals in particular need nutrients. You generally want your nutrients to read 0.03ppm phosphate and 5ppm nitrate at minimum.

I've never dosed nutrients, I just feed corals. Buy whatever brand of nutrients has high ratings and follow the directions on the bottle until you have enough nutrients.
 
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Jackmot

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Algae growth means only that pest algae is getting enough nutrients to grow. If no nutrients are testing, that means very little to no nutrients are available to your corals. Soft corals in particular need nutrients. You generally want your nutrients to read 0.03ppm phosphate and 5ppm nitrate at minimum.

I've never dosed nutrients, I just feed corals. Buy whatever brand of nutrients has high ratings and follow the directions on the bottle until you have enough nutrients.
Ok, so basically the algae is beating the corals on getting the nutrients?
I have some tropic marine pro coral phyton which is a phyto-plancton supplement for corals, would this somehow help in bringing the nutrients up?
 

Tired

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Pest algaes can grow in extremely low nutrients, and will use up what little nutrients are present.

Phytoplankton is to feed corals that directly eat phytoplankton, and also copepods. If it's live phyto (like bottled stuff usually is), it may lower nutrients because the phyto uses it up.
 
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Jackmot

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Pest algaes can grow in extremely low nutrients, and will use up what little nutrients are present.

Phytoplankton is to feed corals that directly eat phytoplankton, and also copepods. If it's live phyto (like bottled stuff usually is), it may lower nutrients because the phyto uses it up.
I had never thought on that about the phyto plancton ,very interesting man, thanks :)
It's not live Phyto (I think), it's a greenish powder.
I have read that these specific corals do benefit from the phyto, Am I correct?
 

Tired

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I doubt a mushroom coral is going to eat phytoplankton. Many people never get them to eat anything at all, and if they do eat, it's usually something like mysis or a pellet. The xenia might take it.

Oh, and pull out that chaeto. Chaeto uses up your nutrients. You don't need it unless you have too many nutrients.
 
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rhostam

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I doubt a mushroom coral is going to eat phytoplankton. Many people never get them to eat anything at all, and if they do eat, it's usually something like mysis or a pellet. The xenia might take it.

Oh, and pull out that chaeto. Chaeto uses up your nutrients. You don't need it unless you have too many nutrients.
I’m fortunate to observe mine feeding nearly every time I spot feed them, then. Pity because it’s fascinating to watch.

Rhodactis yum yum time.
 
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Jackmot

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I doubt a mushroom coral is going to eat phytoplankton. Many people never get them to eat anything at all, and if they do eat, it's usually something like mysis or a pellet. The xenia might take it.

Oh, and pull out that chaeto. Chaeto uses up your nutrients. You don't need it unless you have too many nutrients.
I meant that if the xenia and the GSP ate the phyto haha, sorry.
I have only a very small amount of chaeto just so when I finally switch tanks (in less than a month or so) I won't have to buy it again. Should I still pull it out completely?

I’m fortunate to observe mine feeding nearly every time I spot feed them, then. Pity because it’s fascinating to watch.

Rhodactis yum yum time.
That's awesome man!! Very lucky :)

One thing I haven't understood yet is what happens to soft corals with low calcium. Can someone please explain this?
 

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A tiny bit of chaeto is probably fine, just make sure it's only a few strands.

I think you'd have to have extremely low calcium to hurt soft corals. Stony corals need it for growth. You shouldn't really have low calcium without any stony corals anyway, since nothing else uses a terribly large amount.
 
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Jackmot

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A tiny bit of chaeto is probably fine, just make sure it's only a few strands.

I think you'd have to have extremely low calcium to hurt soft corals. Stony corals need it for growth. You shouldn't really have low calcium without any stony corals anyway, since nothing else uses a terribly large amount.
My chaeto's approx size is a golf ball, I think that's small enough(?)
What level would it be too low for the calcium?
 

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I'd yank out at least half of that chaeto. You want to have a tiny bit of it.

I honestly don't know what level of calcium will harm soft corals. You could do a water change now to add some back in, since you've got no nutrients anyway. Normally you don't want to do a water change with low nutrients, but you can't have negative phosphate, so a water change to replenish calcium before you get into the heavy feeding and potential nutrient dosing wouldn't hurt.

Any reason you don't have fish? A fish being fed a good amount of food would help the nutrients.
 
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Jackmot

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I'd yank out at least half of that chaeto. You want to have a tiny bit of it.

I honestly don't know what level of calcium will harm soft corals. You could do a water change now to add some back in, since you've got no nutrients anyway. Normally you don't want to do a water change with low nutrients, but you can't have negative phosphate, so a water change to replenish calcium before you get into the heavy feeding and potential nutrient dosing wouldn't hurt.

Any reason you don't have fish? A fish being fed a good amount of food would help the nutrients.
Got it! I'll remove half of the chaeto ASAP

I haven't done any water change in almost a month because of the low nutrients but you have a really good point haha, I'll re check my nitrate and phosphate before doing it just to make shure

I don't have any fish because my tank is really small (14 liters DT and approx 25 liters sump) but I'm working on a new tank which will be 30 liters DT and 25 liters Sump (approx) and then I'll add a ocellaris probably :)

I've been ghost feeding to my sump every other day in order to increase the nutrients, is this a bad idea??
 
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Jackmot

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Those are not filaments nor Xenia but clove polyps. Can grow evasively but harmless
Wait.. you're telling me that I don't have a pulsing xenia and that those things aren't filaments? I guess I'm way more of a rookie than I thought, sorry...
Can you please explain what are them?? Specially the things that look like filaments
 
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Jackmot

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No, those are definitely mushroom filaments. The pink coral, I'm not familiar enough with xenia off the top of my head to tell you if it's definitely xenia.
ohh okok. Well, the pink coral looks like xenia and pulses frenetically so I'm guessing it is pulsing xenia hahaha.
BTW, the mushroom looks a lot better and is alsmot fully extended. Right now the only coral that is not extended is the GSP but it does that from time to time when anything stresses out (normally it reopens after 3 days).
 
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