What do we have here? Dino's or Cyano?

CanuckReefer

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I suspect It was the cyclops introduced on feeding about a month ago....it wasnt being fully eaten likely.
All inhabitants seem happy but let's face it ,it's rather unsightly. Reasonable success with a new UV sterilizer knocking it back a quite a bit , harvesting by hand, water changes ... but still fairly persistent. Water parameters are good phosphates and nitrates. The question I guess might be more nitrates needed?
Thanks all.


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CanuckReefer

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Looks like cyano to me. Try raising NO3 a bit if it's under 2-3ppm or so...
1 on the most recent test. Undetectable a week ago. I don't test a lot if ever over the years but this latest little hiccup has me on it quite a bit. If anything positive maybe I go purchase another fish to help the scenario ...wife will love me lol.
 

biophilia

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It's kind of anecdotal, but I've found cyano mats are less likely to form above 3ppm NO3. Besides, anything for an excuse to buy another fish!

If raising it a bit doesn't help and you start getting more frustrated, a pretty fail-safe alternative is to try regularly dosing a little bit of sodium silica (Brightwell's SpongExcel is what I've used). Most reef aquariums are extremely silica-limited and maintaining a slightly detectable level of silica allows a very light dusting of diatoms to grow on surfaces that would otherwise be colonized by cyano or dinoflagellates. Those diatoms then get rapidly consumed by all sorts of beneficial creatures (snails, copepods, etc) so you don't end up with a brown diatom bloom like new tanks get.
 

xxkenny90xx

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Cyano for sure. I don't usually recommend chemical remedies but chemiclean works wonders on cyano
 
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CanuckReefer

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It's kind of anecdotal, but I've found cyano mats are less likely to form above 3ppm NO3. Besides, anything for an excuse to buy another fish!

If raising it a bit doesn't help and you start getting more frustrated, a pretty fail-safe alternative is to try regularly dosing a little bit of sodium silica (Brightwell's SpongExcel is what I've used). Most reef aquariums are extremely silica-limited and maintaining a slightly detectable level of silica allows a very light dusting of diatoms to grow on surfaces that would otherwise be colonized by cyano or dinoflagellates. Those diatoms then get rapidly consumed by all sorts of beneficial creatures (snails, copepods, etc) so you don't end up with a brown diatom bloom like new tanks get.
Cyano for sure. I don't usually recommend chemical remedies but chemiclean works wonders on cyano
Thanks much both! I wonder if I try both of these in moderation? Or maybe the Sodium Silica and if it doesn't take then the Chemiclean....
 

xxkenny90xx

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Thanks much both! I wonder if I try both of these in moderation? Or maybe the Sodium Silica and if it doesn't take then the Chemiclean....
I personally wouldn't want elevated silica levels or daitoms on my sand (they are just as bad as cyano imo). I also battled cyano for a year or 2 in my high nutrient tank (nitrates stay around 25ppm). But every tank is different so you just have to figure out what works for you.
 

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I battled cyano for a couple years. Always in the sandbed like yours, never anywhere else.

It wasn't until I read a post by @Lasse about getting nitrates up over 5 that cyano won't mat up. I was around 3ppm and have always kept that number pretty stable. I then started adding neo-nitro to get right about 8ppm, and then the cyano on my sandbed start to disappear.

The addition of a conch or 2 would help that too.
 

biophilia

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Chemiclean will work pretty quickly as it's an antibiotic (erythromycin). Whether or not you want to introduce an antibiotic into your reef tank is up to you. I've used it without any negative effects, but it's also ultimately a band-aid. It will kill high concentrations of bacteria (like cyano mats on the substrate) very effectively, but will not address the issue that caused the cyano mat formation to begin with. Repeated doses over time may also lead to some antibiotic resistance -- so it has the same issue as any other antibiotic.

The path of least resistance is to raise your nitrate (buying more fish, feeding more, dosing potassium nitrate, or something else) and then to regularly break up the cyano mats that form. Simply blasting the mats apart with a turkey baster daily will release the hydrogen sulfide gas that builds up underneath them and make it a lot harder for them to form and grow. That trapped gas is likely one of the primary processes that allows the bacterial colony to extract adequate food (phosphorus) from the substrate and continue multiplying.

The silica thing is really just one additional tool that can help eliminate a limiting nutrient that keeps a more favorable organism (benthic diatoms) from colonizing surfaces. Without them, the first colonizers on those bare surfaces are more likely to be cyano or dinoflagellates. Over time, coralline growth will colonize some of those surfaces and perform the same beneficial function that diatoms would.
 
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CanuckReefer

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Chemiclean will work pretty quickly as it's an antibiotic (erythromycin). Whether or not you want to introduce an antibiotic into your reef tank is up to you. I've used it without any negative effects, but it's also ultimately a band-aid. It will kill high concentrations of bacteria (like cyano mats on the substrate) very effectively, but will not address the issue that caused the cyano mat formation to begin with. Repeated doses over time may also lead to some antibiotic resistance -- so it has the same issue as any other antibiotic.

The path of least resistance is to raise your nitrate (buying more fish, feeding more, dosing potassium nitrate, or something else) and then to regularly break up the cyano mats that form. Simply blasting the mats apart with a turkey baster daily will release the hydrogen sulfide gas that builds up underneath them and make it a lot harder for them to form and grow. That trapped gas is likely one of the primary processes that allows the bacterial colony to extract adequate food (phosphorus) from the substrate and continue multiplying.

The silica thing is really just one additional tool that can help eliminate a limiting nutrient that keeps a more favorable organism (benthic diatoms) from colonizing surfaces. Without them, the first colonizers on those bare surfaces are more likely to be cyano or dinoflagellates. Over time, coralline growth will colonize some of those surfaces and perform the same beneficial function that diatoms would.
My local store says they have stock on the Chemiclean, so will purchase and give it a try. Will also up the feeding, perhaps dose a bit as well.
Been doing just as you mention blowing it out with a baster, seems to be helping a bit. On the feeding, I utilize a pre made frozen mix , also a homemade one that I blend. Target feed with Reef Roids once a week so maybe up that a bit?
I do notice when my sunrise lights come on significantly less slime. As the day continues it increases markedly. Have heard some suggest a 3 day blackout, which seems to make sense based on what I am seeing as a result of the lighting....
Thanks for all the help.
 
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