What are the root causes of Cyano?

Discussion in 'Reef Chemistry by Randy Holmes-Farley' started by aeras1131, Nov 18, 2017.

  1. MnFish1

    MnFish1 Valuable Member R2R Supporter Partner Member 2019 Build Thread Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    There are also forms of other bacteria that tend to form 'biofilm' and 'slime' - while others of the same species do not (mucoid vs non-mucoid pseudomonas strains for example). Which could explain why some cyanobacteria strains produce mats and others do not
     

  2. reeferfoxx

    reeferfoxx Valuable Member R2R Supporter Reef Squad R2R Excellence Award Build Thread Contributor

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    Did someone say "red rum"?

    20160930_181244.jpg

    This looks normal, right? Lol

    Sorry this is an old photo. I'm just having fun. Great thread to read by the way.
     
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  3. saltyfilmfolks

    saltyfilmfolks Lights! Camera! Reef! R2R Supporter Reef Squad Leader Photo of the Month Award R2R Excellence Award Build Thread Contributor

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    I did finally figure out what happens in the tank that did that.
    IMG_0681.GIF
     
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  4. reeferfoxx

    reeferfoxx Valuable Member R2R Supporter Reef Squad R2R Excellence Award Build Thread Contributor

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    tenor.gif
     
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  5. saltyfilmfolks

    saltyfilmfolks Lights! Camera! Reef! R2R Supporter Reef Squad Leader Photo of the Month Award R2R Excellence Award Build Thread Contributor

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    Red Rum.
     
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  6. reeferfoxx

    reeferfoxx Valuable Member R2R Supporter Reef Squad R2R Excellence Award Build Thread Contributor

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    ;Hilarious
     
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  7. Lasse

    Lasse Valuable Member R2R Supporter Reef Squad Leader R2R Excellence Award Reef Tank 365 Build Thread Contributor

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    Jag hoppas verkligen att min engelska är bättre än din Svenska :) Om inte - då förstår jag varför ni har så svårt att förstå mig :)


    I live on Sweden's west coast. It rarely snows here. And if it does, it will come as horizontal ice :) We have had snow for 2 days this November - but now its gone, weather just now. around 6 degree C, partly sun and weak wind - but, I´m sure , soon it will be as the most winters in Gothenburg: 0 degree C, windy and incoming horizontal rain/ice/snow :) Not the beauty of northern Sweden, nor the beauty of southern Spain, just typical Gothenburg winters

    (I en tidigare post sa du att en hög nitrathalt hämmade cyanobakterier i sjöar)

    Yes - but it was in the context of that NO3 block the formation of hydrogen sulfide in the anaerobic sediments, hence block the release of phosphorus from molecules there phosphorus was bond to different metal ions (metal phosphates as calcium phosphate, iron phosphate and so on) In the cited case it was cyanobacteria with heterocyst (N fixating genera) that migrate down to the anoxic sediment during nighttime – picking up phosphorus for next day needs. The same I think happen sometimes below the mats and that NO3 in these cases can block the P uptake. This if the cyanobacteria take its P from these metal-P compounds – not if it takes the P they need from organic matter that is anaerobic breakdown below the mats.

    It could be different strain – for sure – but I´m not sure on that because I have seen this “lose” bacteria before, during (in the mats) and after the mat phase. I do not believe that the mat is a result of infection – I think they are a result of changing strategies from on of the oldest organism on earth.

    To touch the sand bed by my hands – it’s for me mostly a big No-No. But it is not valid when the mats have been formed – they have to be disturbed as much as possible IMO

    Sincerely Lasse
     
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  8. reeferfoxx

    reeferfoxx Valuable Member R2R Supporter Reef Squad R2R Excellence Award Build Thread Contributor

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    @Lasse This year has been a big cycle of different strains of dino for me. Now that dinos have subsided with taking different approaches for different species, the cycle of hair algae has come and gone. However, now I'm getting cyano mats in various areas of the tank. Mats on the sandbed, near acans on the sandbed, and patches on rocks. I believe part of it was the use and saturation of potassium phosphorus. Though, none has been dosed in a couple months or longer. Before disturbing the mats or any other areas of the tank and before feeding fish, I took some parameter tests as follows:

    SG - 1.026(Milwaukee)
    Alk - 7.8dkh(Salifert)
    Ca - 415(Salifert)
    Mag - 1390(Salifert)
    No3 - 2-5ppm(Salifert)
    Po4 - 0.03ppm(Hanna ULR)
    pH - 8.2(API HR exp. 2019)

    What are the thoughts here? Organic build up? Over feeding? Too much sandbed stirring?

    Tank is running filter floss, skimmer, and a small 9w UV for filtration. 30 gallon tank with 8 small fish and a shrimp.
    2x Oci. Clowns
    3x Blue-green chromis
    1x Cherub pygmy
    1x Royal Gramma
    1x Hi-fin red banded goby
    1x Pistol Shrimp(Randalii)

    Lighting - modified 165w WIFI black box.

    Moon lights - 12hr(ramping)
    Blues - 70% peak 7hrs (ramping)
    Whites - 17% peak 7hrs(ramping)

    Peak Par at water surface 450. Sandbed PAR 130-150.
     
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  9. Hans-Werner

    Hans-Werner Active Member

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    This is not correct. Fish excrete phosphorus with faeces while they excrete ammonium through the gills. Faeces will usually contain particulate phosphate and maybe some other phosphates. Bacteria do not produce orthophosphate except for their own takeup. Breakdown of polyphosphate and organic phosphates will be achieved with the enzyme alkaline phosphatase before uptake. Bacteria may form polyphosphates for storage. Besides orthophosphate polyphosphate usually is the main form of phosphates in reef aquaria. When I did a digestion for polyphosphates and organic phosphates I found 0.01 to 0.02 ppm orthophosphate, ca. 0.05 to 0.06 ppm polyphosphate (acid digestion only) and around 0.02 ppm organic phosphate (acid + persulfate digestion). I think the polyphosphates are mainly of bacterial and maybe algal origin, just as the organic phosphates.

    The particulate phosphorus from fish faeces will just dissolve to the equlibirum with water and it will dissolve slowly and will form a slowly running phosphate source while KH2 PO4 will come as a massive pulse of dissolved orthophosphate into the water.

    Corals and algae also can produce alkaline phosphatase to get orthophosphate from polyphosphates and organic phosphates ready for uptake. Alkaline phosphatase is an enzyme widespread among organisms.
     
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2017
  10. GoVols

    GoVols "VFL" R2R Supporter Reef Squad Leader MTRCMember R2R Excellence Award Reef Tank 365 Article Contributor Build Thread Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    Since I have found a rhythm (method) to keep my phosphates and nitrates in balance
    With no more need for carbon dosing / So long to Cyano :)

    Regards, GoVols
     
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  11. GoVols

    GoVols "VFL" R2R Supporter Reef Squad Leader MTRCMember R2R Excellence Award Reef Tank 365 Article Contributor Build Thread Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    [​IMG]
     
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  12. Lasse

    Lasse Valuable Member R2R Supporter Reef Squad Leader R2R Excellence Award Reef Tank 365 Build Thread Contributor

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    Hi Reeferfoxx

    It’s difficult to have any opinion in this case. I have not following your struggle against the “dinos” and the hairy algae but probably – your system is stressed and not in balance.

    How sure are you according to your concentrations of PO4 and NO3? Do you have any possibility to check against some other methods? Personally – I have stopped to use Hanna ULR because I got repeating readings that show to much compared with Triton test. However, Hana Low Range (direct in PO4) has shown readings at the same levels as Triton – I use that for the moment. I have some friends that have done the shift to Hanna LR. Me and Saliferts nitrate test has never been compatible. Reason for that can be that I have problems to see just their colour changes.

    You have a pistol shrimp and a goby – In that case – it is difficult to have a undisturbed sand bed. I have a DSB in my fuge and I try not to disturb that – but in my display – its like the wandering sand dunes of Skagen (northern Denmark).

    I do not believe that your use of phosphate has change so much – for me – phosphate will precipitate regardless of source.

    You have cyanobacteria mats on the stones. It means that the probably can get some resources there and its not (IMO) organic matter. I (if it was my aquarium) should probably add KNO3 (try to put in NO3 to a level of 1-2 ppm/day) for 5 days. Measure every day and try to take away as much as possible of the mats every day. After a week I should evaluate the test. I do not want to use the NO3 as a fertilizer – its roll is to change the biochemical processes below the mat (as I outlined before). If I was dosing organic Carbon - I would stop that as long as there are Cynaobacteria mats

    Probably you will have other advises – your problem will be to decide which road you should take. When you decide to go one way – keep going that way till it completely clear that it is a dead-end road or – the main road. Take time.

    As long as you have Cyanobacteria mats – do not be afraid to disturb the sand there they are – you (IMO) must do that in order to have a chance to defeat them (again IMO)

    Sincerely Lasse
     
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  13. Lasse

    Lasse Valuable Member R2R Supporter Reef Squad Leader R2R Excellence Award Reef Tank 365 Build Thread Contributor

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    Do you mean that the bacteria breakdown of organic matter do not produce any ortophosphates at all?

    Do you mean that particulate phosphorus slowly dissolve and form orthophosphate by itself? Where will the enzyme you state is responsible for the breakdown of polyphosphate and organic phosphate (the forms the term particulate phosphorus include) comes from in that case? They are also the forms that you will need to digest before you can measure them.

    Sincerely Lasse
     
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2017
  14. reeferfoxx

    reeferfoxx Valuable Member R2R Supporter Reef Squad R2R Excellence Award Build Thread Contributor

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    Thank you for your input. I might hold off on kno3 dosing for bit. 4 of those 8 fish were added in the last two weeks. I would like to see their impact on no3. Also, im going try and focus more on micro oragnism additions. I think in that time, it should allow me to see how things go forward. The dinoflagellate history is long and I'm sure it wouldn't completely warrant the now factor. I am welcome to all suggestions and any improvements or downfalls will be recorded during this time. With where my nutrients are today, its the most balanced I've seen in a long time. Though, inaccuracies in test kits could sight otherwise. I'll see how things play out in the next month. Thank you.
     
  15. Lasse

    Lasse Valuable Member R2R Supporter Reef Squad Leader R2R Excellence Award Reef Tank 365 Build Thread Contributor

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    @reeferfoxx

    Excuse me – I was unclear - with imbalance - I meant an imbalance of the micro fauna - not of nutrients.

    However, I´m not a big fan of probiotic if you do not – in one of another way - remove the problematic organism – or change the environment in order to make it more difficult for the organism in question. For me – these is the two most important things to do – after that – time will change the micro fauna. But in some cases – probiotics is able to speed up the processes – maybe it’s a good idea in this case – but IMO you need to disturb the mats all the time. Taking down the biomass and microenvironment of the cyanobacteria and hence make it easier for the competitors you want to introduce.

    Sincerely Lasse
     
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  16. Sallstrom

    Sallstrom Valuable Member R2R Supporter Reef Tank 365 Build Thread Contributor

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    I agree on Lasse's advices. But want to push some extra for the patience part. Not much happens over night, give it a week or three weeks before you decide if the change/adjustment worked or not. IMO the most important thing is to do things slow and keep to the protocoll for a while. Not try 5 things at the same time. :)

    This is also why I like to not clean the sand or rocks where the cyano is. That is a way to disturb the tank. And the cyanobacteria is an opportunist that do well in changing conditions. But it could also be that I'm lazy ;) Anyway, this has worked well at my work the last years. I have adjusted the NO3 and PO4(slowly) and then just waited. No other changes.
    I do clean the sand sometimes from cyano, if I really need the tank to look okey for some event. But if it makes the cyano go away faster I'm not sure. They usually comes back a day or two after cleaning.

    / David
     
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  17. Brew12

    Brew12 Electrical Gru Staff Member Team R2R R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Reef Tank 365 Article Contributor Build Thread Contributor North Alabama Reef Club Partner Member 2018

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    I've tried doing some studying on this but I'm lost. This has gone way over my head.

    I think I understand the difference between orthophosphate, polyphosphate (non organic), and organic phosphates. I'm lost on the significance or application of each in my aquarium. Is this something where you could simplify how each is used (and by what) or the importance of each?
     
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  18. Lasse

    Lasse Valuable Member R2R Supporter Reef Squad Leader R2R Excellence Award Reef Tank 365 Build Thread Contributor

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    You are lazy - I know that - but it is some difference between clean a 2 meter deep aquaria from mats compared with a normal aquaria - I have some understanding for you decision :)

    Sincerely Lasse
     
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  19. Hans-Werner

    Hans-Werner Active Member

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    I think the ratio between orthophosphate on one side and total phosphate (orthoposphate + polyphosphates + organic phosphates) tells something about how quickly phosphate circles in the system. The higher the proportion of polyphosphates + organic phosphates the faster the phosphates are cycling and the higher the proportion of phosphate that is always cycling in organisms.

    When thinking about metabolism and cycling of phosphates you must forget the N cycle. Phosphate and N are completely different. Phosphate gets neither reduced nor oxidized. Phosphate forms bonds with sugars like ribose or desoxyribose to form RNA and DNA. In organisms phosphate is bound to other phosphates with polyphosphate bonds, for example ADP + P --> ATP. This is the way organisms store and transport energy to make use of the stored energy in other reactions. In metabolism there is always some orthophosphate that is split from ATP and not yet bound again to ADP. So it may leak from the cell. That is why there must be some phosphate in the water to compensate for the leakage with new uptake. In contrast there is never much free ammonium in the metabolism. Ammonium at once gets bound to glutamate (amino acid with one amino group) to form glutamin (AA with two amino groups) and from then on it is always bound to organic acids to form amino acids or to enzyms during transfer of the amino group until ammonium is excreted through the gills, after for example the organic acid of the aminoacid has gotten oxidized in catabolism to make use of the stored energy.

    Particulate phosphates from the fish feces are for example calciumphosphate from fish bone particles in dry foods or from crustacean exoskeltons in frozen food. Also incompletely digested algae and other feedstuff may form particulate phosphate. Bacteria and microalgae with their phosphate stores are also particulate phosphate.

    The predominance of these other forms of phosphate in some systems with low orthophosphate concentrations is an important difference to, and in my eyes a good argument against simple orthophosphate dosage.

    I think mat formation in cyanobacteria is a strategy to cover, protect and make use of phosphate stores in substrate and rocks.
     
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2017
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  20. Hans-Werner

    Hans-Werner Active Member

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    My opinion whether to disturb or not to disturb cyanos is: Disturb them but not too frequently. Wait until the cyanos have formed massive mats and there has formed some precipitates and some sediment under the cyano mat. Then remove them completely with the precipitates and sediments formed. If you do not wait until they have formed mats and sediments too much cyanos are still adhered to the substrate and rock and complete (or nearly so) removal is very difficult.

    This is the most effective way to disturb and remove cyanos in my experience.
     
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