NUTRIENT ISSUE

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chedog83

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Hello all,

I recently did a ten gallon water change in my 72 gallon Bowfront reef tank. I have a 20 gallon sump and I believe at max my system is 75 gallons total. I have continuously tested and shown ultra low nutrients. At first I must have had traces because when my corals we frags they were just fine. I also recently removed some chateo from my fuge and cut back the lighting schedule from their as well. This was all coupled with cleaning the filter socks less often and spot dosing a slurry of reef ab+, restore, coral amino, reef roids and reef chili daily. Everything seemed to be going in the right direction as my nutrients were climbing in slight levels but with a water change I lost the progress I had gained. Rest of the parameters are not only on point but consistent. Up until now I have tested Ca, PH and ALK every day. That’s how I know the issue is not with that part of the water chemistry.

I ordered Neonitro and Neophos from BRS tonight but dose not come for a day or two.

My question is before I receive my supplement and follow down the rabbit hole of dosing nutrients can I turn off my skimmer for a day or two to try an minimize the nutrients extracted in the skimming process?

That asked could I put the skimmer on a timer on my controller to limit the time it runs to try and retain those nutrients long term and in turn minimize amount doses for those nutrients?
 
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Cell

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There are many ways to achieve stability. More frequent, smaller water changes is just one. In your case, I'd just shut down the skimmer for awhile. Go slow with the changes though, don't start overfeeding AND shut off the skimmer, for instance. One thing at a time then wait a few days to monitor effects before trying something else.
 
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chedog83

chedog83

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Great suggestion. That’s what I was thinking. Feed the same amount for fish and coral just shut off the skimmer and test daily to track progress. After a week I’m thinking I’ll adjust the skimmer from constant on to 22hrs a day. That’s 14 hrs less a week. Continue to test and so forth. But at least I’ll have the two Neos in a pinch or if it’s all not enough.
Someone at my lfs mentioned to me it’s not good long term to turn the skimmer on and off. Since I got it used and at a good price and since I didn’t get the specific size maybe I should have for my tank I’ll consider this a possible short term solution until the skimmer has an issue and then down size.

I’ll be approaching any changes in moderation to your point.

Many thanks,
 
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Cell

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I don't think it's that big of a deal as long as you aren't experience big nutrient swings as a result. But ultimately, it's easier to find the right balance where you don't have to mess around with it at all. Assuming you aren't overstocked, you could also add another fish or two.
 

otzhorse

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There are many ways to achieve stability. More frequent, smaller water changes is just one. In your case, I'd just shut down the skimmer for awhile. Go slow with the changes though, don't start overfeeding AND shut off the skimmer, for instance. One thing at a time then wait a few days to monitor effects before trying something else.
Agreed here. I bottomed both Nitrate and Phosphate out ended up with Dinos and lost all my stuff (much longer story) but knee jerk reaction was shut off skimmer, overfeed, dump some neophos and neonitro. Next thing I knew I'm completely the opposite with nitrates well over 100, Phosphate incredibly high and it has taken months to get it back to stable. My best advice go slow!!
 
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chedog83

chedog83

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UPDATE:

Really weird but after 26 hours no skimmer and no adjustment to feeding regiment and my phosphates are at .02 and my nitrates are at .15. I guess I was expecting a larger impact that what occurred.
I will be leaving the skimmer off another 26hrs testing once tomorrow morning and once in the evening when I get home from work. I also will keep that same feeding schedule as normal. Still hoping to be able to find a more holistic approach without having too add two more items to dose. That said Neo nitro and Neo phos get here tomorrow.
 
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