Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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bobo 02-06-2008 09:07 AM

Brown Algae?
my tank has been cycling for a week now and some of my LR has signs of brownish looking algae. Reading about it online i decided my first move should be cutting down on the lighting. I had the lighting on from 9 Am till 11 pm , thats 14 hours, so i`m cutting that down to 8 hours. Will this be enough or should i do some water changes too?

bettababy 02-06-2008 01:31 PM

The only way we can suggest water changes or not is if we know your water params for ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, pH, and calcium.
Yes, 14 hrs of light is excessive... 10 should be plenty in a 24 hr period.

bobo 02-06-2008 03:51 PM

i`ll test the water again tomorrow, but when i tested on saturday my nitrates were way high, 50 mg/l

ph was 8.0
nitrites 0

cant remember the other 2, i`ll test tomorrow agian.

bettababy 02-06-2008 05:25 PM

I will watch for your water params. When nitrates get high you'll need to do water changes. In a saltwater tank cycling properly with rock and sand, expect to maintain it as if it had fish/animals in it already.

Also be aware that there are phases of algae growth during cycling, this is normal and nothing you do will get rid of it entirely... your goal should simply be to keep it under control until your tank moves into the next phase.

Its for this reason that I always advise people to cycle a saltwater tank without fish... it takes an average of about 6 - 8 wks for most marine tanks to cycle completely, most animals can't handle these phases. When corals are put in too soon these stages of algae growth and die off will usually kill corals by smothering them. I'm so happy to hear you're waiting!

bobo 02-06-2008 05:41 PM

trust me its hard to wait, whenever i go by the petshop i just want to grab a whole bunch of fish to put into my tank, but a slow and steady approach is what it takes. Since its 1.40 am now i wont test for the next 12 hours minimum. So you advise a water change if my nitrates are still high?

bettababy 02-06-2008 08:27 PM

Yep, if nitrates are still high, do about a 25% water change, wait a few days and then test again. If it's still high the next time, you can do another water change, about 10 - 20% every few days until its under control.

And you're very right about waiting... that makes all the difference in the world. In waiting you will manage to avoid bring home fish that are only going to get sick and possibly die before you're done with the cycle.... or avoid buying fish you don't really want or can't stay there later. Quite often I've seen people run to the store and quick buy a few damsels to cycle their tank, then to find out that damsels won't work with the fish they really want, or that the damsels will get too big for their tank. Blue damsels in a 30 gallon, you might get 3 in there, but that would be a full tank of fish, plus they're quite aggressive, making it difficult to mix anything with them in a smaller tank. (domino damsels grow to 6 inches, and are very very aggressive, especially once they mature... same applies to most damsels)

bobo 02-07-2008 02:52 AM

alright :

Ph - 8.0
ammonia / ammonium = 0 (my ammonium was halfway between the yellow and the green on the sera test kit - yellow being 0 and green being 0.5 = but it was more yellow)
Nitrates = 50
nitrites = 0
calcium = 400-440 (not sure when exactly it turned blue :P between 20 and 22 drops)

Btw i do have 1 tank inhabitant, and astrea snail which was in the tank when i get my LR - should i remove him or will he just chill?

bobo 02-07-2008 03:36 PM

i did a water change earlier, when should i test again?

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