Corals dying

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Anonymous

Guest
Hello all, I've require assistance from you all before and your help is appreciative. But for the past several month (actually since the summer) my tank has not been doing so good. Only some corals are doing badly. I have hairy mushroom room corals that are doing well they just keep getting bigger, but some of my common mushrooms are shrinking. I can't manage to keep any hard coral alive except one. I have a open brain that doe’s well but any other type of had coral dyes within 60days a slow death. Most will start to close up after two weeks to a month. I have a 90-gallon tank with 160 pd. or rock 70% Florida and 30% Fuji I also have 30 pd. of live sand and 30 of agrinite sand. I have 4 VH0 3 tircramatic and 1 blue and the bulbs were replaced two months ago. I have a 20-gallon sump with bio-balls, a Berlin protein skimmer and sand bed filter. I'm running 6 power heads for water movement. This tank has been established for about 1.5 years. I notice that there is some brown algae growth and the macro alga grows at a very slow rate. I detected some silicates but I don't what is consider to be a dangerous level also my phosphates are 0.05. I put silicate and Phosphate remover in a canister filter yesterday. Nitrates, Nitrites, Ammonia, Copper are all 0. I change 40 gallons a month (20gal biweekly). I have tow tangs 3 clown fish 50 hermits and 50 snails.15 types of mushrooms 15 polyps 1 bubble coral 1 brain and some misc. soft coral.
 
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Anonymous

Guest
I am not sure what is causing this but Ive heard that flordia live rock is known to decompose slowly releasing pollutants in the water. Also be carful with phosphate removers, rinse very well. SPS corals need extra special care, temperature is very important as well as all other paremeters. HTH Happy Reef Keeping Ben
 
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Anonymous

Guest
Phosphate removers can crash the Ph and alakalinity be very careful with them
if there is no phosphate they go after silicates if there is no silicate they hit the buffering system next
we tested them and it does happen so be careful with PO4 removers


you don't need the bioballs
i would imagine over time the balls are clogged
you have to clean them
portions at a time usually in 1/4's so as not to disrupt the biofilter
however your filter is the rock and sand
so you don't need the bioballs
you can slowly remove them so as not to disrupt the system too much

how deep is the sand bed??
ot may be building up toxins and releasing them into the system

phosphates are high
over time the stress on the corals is what is killing them
possibly

the water changes IMO are too much
you are changing too much water IMO
I would do a weekly of 5-6% a week
20 every 2 weeks is a real shock to the system


I would look at cleaning and removing the balls
getting the phosphate down
skimming and water changes will do that
increase the sand bed to at least 3 inches for efficiency or keep it really stirred up
every few days stir it up
DON'T use your fingers

when you tested the water how close to after or before a water change were you??
that could make a big difference in the numbers

another thing to look for is since the tank has been up for so long if you don't regularilly clean the rock with a power head ro turkey baster
it can clog with debris and detritous and that can creat big problems also

IMO IME

HTH

[This message has been edited by Phishmon (edited 12 January 2000).]

[This message has been edited by Phishmon (edited 12 January 2000).]
 
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Anonymous

Guest
sorry to hear how it' going. smaller water changes would be safer. is there an additive you're using. if you can, test your water before you mix it with salt. there must be something out of whack. are you using r/o water? is the prefilter old? can you test water just after filtering it. how's your temp?
 
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Anonymous

Guest
why not use fingers to stir the sand?
just asking ..I have not heard this before and was curious about the reasoning behind it....
 
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Anonymous

Guest
if it was the sand you would probably see discoloration looking at it from the front of the tank down it's depth. check for nitrites to be sure. in an established tank you shouldn't get a reading. some of your corals are dying, not all, so i tend to think it's something you're adding to the water. either in the makeup water, or in the water mix.
 
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Anonymous

Guest
1) Ditch the phosphate remover. I'm not a big fan of aluminum oxide in marine tanks for a variety reasons. Mostly I am leery the formation of aluminum florides which are toxic phosphate analogs. (I researched this in grad school).
2) When in doubt, run activated carbon. I have a Fluval 3 full of carbon which has worked well for me in the past.
 
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Anonymous

Guest
Thanks for all of the advice. I’m using DI water. I don't recall the brand bit it's a cylinder with throwaway cartridges. I must admit I don't think I ever cleaned my rocks with a power-head. I reduced my lighting to 8hours down from 12 and I will take out the phosphate and silicate remover tonight. The only supplements add to the water is Reef complete and iodine 1 every two weeks, I use the time-released iodine and I use 1 teaspoon for the 90 gallons. Once every two week I will get a small shrimp and grind it to a just and dump inside the tank with the skimmer on full. My coral love it and I think the skimmer pulls any unused shrimp out of the water. Tonight I will add some additional carbon and I will slowly remove the bio-balls. Just so you all know my sand is pretty impressive. The life under the sand is doing much better than the corals. I don't think I mentioned this before but my calcium is 450ppm and I dose with Kalk once a week.
 
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Anonymous

Guest
salinity is too low IMO
for that temperature
I keep mine from .o26-.028
for that temp range

stirring the sand with your finger is not a good idea
worms Etc can sting/bite
and it hurts big time
some people are even allergic to these "stings"
if you handle raw rock with your bare hands they will get all swollen up from stings
when they swell up and look like leather for a few days

i don't use iodine at all
some do some don't I prefer not to
that is a long heated debate you might wanna stop adding it and see if there is a difference
especially if you don't know the levels without a test kit that can be dangerous

the other additive you are using probably has iodine in it
you should check the label to see if there is a form of iodine in there


HTH
 
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Anonymous

Guest
now we're getting somewhere. take out the phosphate remover and you may see a difference within a day or two. i had seen this too many times with mushrooms and leathers closing up because of certain phosphate removing compounds. good luck.
 
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Anonymous

Guest
You don't recommend using phosphate remover in the tank.

What about as a last stage of RO/DI before going to the tank. I have found that my RO/DI doesn't get rid of all phosphates so I run through another canister of phosgard.

Any problems using phosphate remover in that fashion ?
 
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Anonymous

Guest
i don't think that's a problem at all. it's the continuous use in the tank water that some corals are senitive to the chemical( aluminum oxide).
 
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Anonymous

Guest
I'm not sure but I have a pH meter and it's 8.2( I even calibrated it several times),temp 79-80 salinity 1s 1.023
 
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Anonymous

Guest
Sculpin:

<<I'm not a big fan of aluminum oxide in marine tanks for a variety reasons. Mostly I am leery the formation of aluminum florides which are toxic phosphate analogs. >>

Can you elaborate on the structure of these aluminum fluorides that you found to be phosphate analogs? I'm curious for several reasons (I do a lot of professional work with phosphate binders and enzyme mimics).

In seawater, aluminum and fluoride do not particularly associate, so I don't believe such formation is an issue for reef tanks.

------------------
Randy Holmes-Farley
 
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Anonymous

Guest
AlF3 and AlF4 form spontaneously when Al3+ is in the presence of F-. AlF3 and AlF4 are square planar and trigonal planar respectively. These molecules look like the the planar intermediate of phosphate transfer. They bind strongly to the active sites of a variety of enzymes which transfer phosphates such as adenylate kinases, G-proteins, guanylate kinases, etc. This interaction tends to be strong due to the electronegativity of the fluorides and the similarities to planar phosphate, and thus this compound can be quite toxic.

Admittedly the formation of Al3+ from aluminum oxides is going to occur at a low rate, and thus the concentration of AlF3/AlF4 is going to be low. However, I'm still leery about it.

Could just be paranoia on my part...

sculpin
 
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Anonymous

Guest
Oops, reversed that: AlF4 is the square planar, AlF3 is the trigonal planar.
 
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Anonymous

Guest
I have only had a reef tank for about six months so please keep that in mind when reading this post. Maybe some of the more experienced people here could comment.

According to the Marine Reef Aquarium Handbook by Dr. Robert J. Goldstein, some mushrooms can "produce potent toxins, so don't place them near other corals."

He also states that many soft corals can emit toxins that can poison other corals, especially hard corals. He goes so far as to reccomend that a tank only contain either soft only or hard only. I have never heard this from any other source, but considering you are having problems with hard corals and you have 15 species of mushrooms, maybe this is the problem.

Dr. Goldstein does state that if you keep hard and soft corals together you should have a long tank, and to place the hard corals near the powerheads and the soft corals downstream. This is so that any toxins the soft corals might produce will be washed away from the hard corals.

Again, I am new, so any other input from the more experienced on this would be helpful.
 
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Anonymous

Guest
Ok...
I removed the Phosphate remover and Lowered my temp to 78-79 salinity 1.024. My bubble corrals still hasn't opened yet and all else looks the same. I checked my Ph meter yesterday and it was reading 8.4 but I received a low battery warning. I will replace the battery tomorrow and purchase a ph and Alk test kit. Thank again for all your help. All other parameters are about the same. phosphates are down slightly and silicates are the same. also I dropped my lights down to 8 hours down from 11
 
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