Please help a new reefer out:)

BRS

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Hi everyone. I recently started a 40 gallon breeder and it was going fantastic. My corals were doing great as well. Then it all went downhill and even my torch died which was heartbreaking. I use an AI Prime light with a self made all in one with filter floss, filter sponge, the balls for increased surface area (forget name) and chaeto. I also just recently started running ROX 0.08 carbon as well. My tank parameters are:
Phosphate- 0.08 (Hanna Ultralow)
Nitrate-5.0 ppm
Ca (Salifer)- 460 ppm
Mg -1200 mg (Aquaforest) little low ik
pH-8.0
Salinity- 1.026 Maintained by ATO
Temp- 78
Ammonia and Nitrite -0 ppm
I really do not know what is going wrong. My corals just do not look good and I don't want to add anything and risk it dying as well because I am in college as a fun pandemic hobby and don't have that much money. I started the tank in March and dose microbacter7 weekly as instructed and dose phytoplanton. My chaeto is stocked full of copepods. Does anyone have any tips for improvement or anything I can change so that it starts to work better. And does anyone have any ideas why the corals are not doing well? I acclimated everything starting at 50% with 30 day on the Prime app. Livestock is 2 turbo snails, 2 trochus, 2 clowns, a firefish, 1 cleanershrimp, a conch that disappeared, 1 nasarious, and a royal gamma. Also attached are photos of the set up if I have to change flow (Jabeo Sow 8) or anything. Thank you so much in advance any help is appreciated.
 
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zoa what

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Hi everyone. I recently started a 40 gallon breeder and it was going fantastic. My corals were doing great as well. Then it all went downhill and even my torch died which was heartbreaking.
Starting a reef is not a turnkey operation. It's not like buying something awesome on Amazon and immediately enjoying the benefits once you rip off the shipping box tape.

Reef, corals is a process of cultivating an ecosystem with balanced water chemistry.

I would say 90% of all the Emergency threads on R2R with a question of "Why are things going wrong?"....

... is a direct result of the hobbyist not allowing enough time to pass for water chemistry and all ecosystem items like LR to mature.

But many of us with mature tanks have made the mistakes as well....buying our first batch of corals, killing them in an immature tank. Then finding success when 9-12mos has past

I don't know what to tell you bruh, other than you picked a hobby that takes 9-12mos of maintenance to setup an ecosystem worthy of supporting corals



.
 

jassermd

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Your parameters are good, however, your tank is still quite new and with the smaller volume, it will take some time to get a nicely established ecosystem. There is nothing you can do to make this happen any faster... frustrating, I know, (been there myself), but it's just part of the process.
Your torch likely died because of this... I was following along that thread.
A couple of questions:
What did you use to cycle your tank?
What powerhead setting?
The AI prime is a great light, but it's a bit small for a 40 breeder and the light parameters you are using are a bit off. You may want to check out the BRS video on the AI series lights for their recommended settings. https://www.bulkreefsupply.com/content/post/brstv-investigates-aqua-illumination-prime-hd


If you're eager to start with some corals, I'd recommend something that is easy and will tolerate things a bit better, such as GSP, mushrooms, or leathers.

Part of this hobby is patience and allowing nature to "do its thing". We've all been there and I can tell you I've lost more than my fair share of pricey corals... I learned the hard way that it just takes time!
 

JCM

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Starting a reef is not a turnkey operation. It's not like buying something awesome on Amazon and immediately enjoying the benefits once you rip off the shipping box tape.

Reef, corals is a process of cultivating an ecosystem with balanced water chemistry.

I would say 90% of all the Emergency threads on R2R with a question of "Why are things going wrong?"....

... is a direct result of the hobbyist not allowing enough time to pass for water chemistry and all ecosystem items like LR to mature.

But many of us with mature tanks have made the mistakes as well....buying our first batch of corals, killing them in an immature tank. Then finding success when 9-12mos has past

I don't know what to tell you bruh, other than you picked a hobby that takes 9-12mos of maintenance to setup an ecosystem worthy of supporting corals



.
I agree, most emergency posts I look at are obviously new tanks with white rocks. It just doesn't work that fast, it takes time. If you want an instant turn key reef, start with real live rock pulled from the ocean.

Hope you get things figured out OP.
 
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Reef.

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My suggestion, stop using the acclimation function, just move the new corals up and down the tank to give more/less light.
Unless you add all the corals at once you are unsettling the corals that are already in the tank by changing the lighting constantly.
 

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Rapid Tissue Necrosis is thought to be caused by microscopic organisms that are present in all marine tanks, but are not kept in balance by other "schtuffs" due to the tank not being "aged".

 
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ReefBrosYoutube

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I used the macrobacter 7 and just ghost feeding to cycle it. I was wondering if my powerhead is in a good location or if I should move it because I get some diatoms on my sandbed. Its on the sin mode to give random flow within the tank. Also @jassermd do you think I should increase my light to the 166 uv violet and 125 blue and royal like BRS had?
 

BanjoBandito

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I used the macrobacter 7 and just ghost feeding to cycle it. I was wondering if my powerhead is in a good location or if I should move it because I get some diatoms on my sandbed. Its on the sin mode to give random flow within the tank. Also @jassermd do you think I should increase my light to the 166 uv violet and 125 blue and royal like BRS had?
There's stuff you need to succeed that can't come from a bottle. You'll have to battle all sorts of things in the next couple weeks/months. Hang in there.
 

jassermd

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If you used Microbacter 7 to cycle your tank, it's going to take some time before you establish a good bio-filter.
If it were me, I'd take a pause and give your tank time to fully establish the bio-filter. Dosing additional bacteria won't hurt, but it won't help speed things up either. Ghost feeding is good. You may want to get a couple fish to help things along. Coral will likely not do well until your ecosystem is more established. Not saying they won't survive, just pointing out that you will likely lose more if you add them too soon.
As for the light, I usually follow BRS settings and then test PAR to see how I need to tweak. It's hard to say what to set your lights at as every tank is different and it will depend on the type of coral you plan to introduce once your tank is more mature.

Diatoms are a good sign... as much as they suck, it's part of the process. And as BanjoBandito noted, you're gonna go through a lot of phases as the tank matures.
Don't get discouraged... we've all been there. Just try to be patient...
 
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ReefBrosYoutube

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If you used Microbacter 7 to cycle your tank, it's going to take some time before you establish a good bio-filter.
If it were me, I'd take a pause and give your tank time to fully establish the bio-filter. Dosing additional bacteria won't hurt, but it won't help speed things up either. Ghost feeding is good. You may want to get a couple fish to help things along. Coral will likely not do well until your ecosystem is more established. Not saying they won't survive, just pointing out that you will likely lose more if you add them too soon.
As for the light, I usually follow BRS settings and then test PAR to see how I need to tweak. It's hard to say what to set your lights at as every tank is different and it will depend on the type of coral you plan to introduce once your tank is more mature.

Diatoms are a good sign... as much as they suck, it's part of the process. And as BanjoBandito noted, you're gonna go through a lot of phases as the tank matures.
Don't get discouraged... we've all been there. Just try to be patient...
Thanks for all your help as I go through this. I have some fish so far they're in the first post and they have been doing great so far the clowns are big fatties now.
 

BostonReefer300

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Lots of good comments already particularly regarding the need for patience with new tanks. That being said, sounds like something else might be going on besides just tank immaturity. Hard to tell from the pics, but my second impression (first impression was that the tank looked brand new) was that the lighting looked too dark and it didn't cover enough of the tank's real estate
 
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