what does a mature sandbed actually look like?

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hello! noobie here

i always hear people talking about mature sandbeds but i want to know how to tell if your sandbed is actually mature? what does a mature sandbed look like? how old before it hits maturity? id love to see pictures!

svanjo11

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Reply #1

I'm no Pro so can only tell you what mine has done over the year since I started..

I started with sand from a break down that I transported with 50kg of Iive rock straight to my tank.

The sand is standard beach type sand - no idea where from or any other specifics about it.

By month two I started seeing brown algae (Diatoms).  These came and went at varying amounts over the course of the last year.

Month 6ish, late at night with the lights off and a head torch, I started seeing "grains of sand" moving... But in areas there was no current...  A bit of research told me these were live critters AKA dustman of the sea.

Month 12, my sand is now back to its original colour - no alae.

When/if I find my camera I'll send you a pic of my sand now..  but that's almost like wishing for a rainbow atm

That's just my experience, hope it helps.

Sent from my S41 using Tapatalk


baekhsong

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Reply #2

hey thats interesting! thank you for sharing. sometimes when i run into trouble i dont know what to do, when i post pictures people will usually say 'thats a very new sandbed. its not mature apart from the cyano' or whatever. sometimes i see people posting their established tanks and everybody's amazed at how clean their sandbed looks.

i have gone through diatoms, cyano, now have some green algae growing but only on the sandbed. i wonder what it is this time haha

Ratvan

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Reply #3

hey thats interesting! thank you for sharing. sometimes when i run into trouble i dont know what to do, when i post pictures people will usually say 'thats a very new sandbed. its not mature apart from the cyano' or whatever. sometimes i see people posting their established tanks and everybody's amazed at how clean their sandbed looks.

i have gone through diatoms, cyano, now have some green algae growing but only on the sandbed. i wonder what it is this time haha

I wonder what those people would say regarding Bare Bottom tanks?

Whats the issue you are having at the moment?

ajm83

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Reply #4

After a while it does get a little ecosystem of its own with amphipods, worms etc living in it.  Maybe that's what they mean.  How you can see that from a quick glance at a picture I'm not sure, could they just mean that it looks clean and therefore new?

baekhsong

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Reply #5

After a while it does get a little ecosystem of its own with amphipods, worms etc living in it.  Maybe that's what they mean.  How you can see that from a quick glance at a picture I'm not sure, could they just mean that it looks clean and therefore new?

i think thats exactly what they mean. but then what about old established systems that have super clean sand ! lol

baekhsong

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Reply #6

I wonder what those people would say regarding Bare Bottom tanks?

Whats the issue you are having at the moment?

ok this is gonna get ugly. my clownfish seems to be hanging out a lot there which is strange ha !

ajm83

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Reply #7

Hmm. That could be dinos or cyano. 

Do you have a microscope?  If so syphon some of that stuff out and have a look at it.
Dinos are usually roundish things that look a bit like apple seeds. Sometimes they rotate.  Cyano looks like long zigzag stringy stuff.

If not there is another test you can do,  this is on another forum but it's such a useful link...sharing is caring!
https://www.reef2reef.com/threads/helpful-method-for-identifying-dinoflagellates.216508/

baekhsong

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Reply #8

ooo i have a pocket microscope i got from amazon for fun some years ago haha! will 60x-120x be OK? ill give it a go either way.

ajm83

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Reply #9

ooo i have a pocket microscope i got from amazon for fun some years ago haha! will 60x-120x be OK? ill give it a go either way.

I think the 100x setting was what I used to see dinos from my tank, but not sure if that would show cyano.

Here's mine, excuse the quality I was balancing a phone on the eyepiece!

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Ratvan

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Reply #10

ok this is gonna get ugly. my clownfish seems to be hanging out a lot there which is strange ha !

Could be Dino's, or Cyano. What is the flow like in this area?  Also any idea what your Nitrates and Phosphate readings are?

baekhsong

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Reply #11

Could be Dino's, or Cyano. What is the flow like in this area?  Also any idea what your Nitrates and Phosphate readings are?

thanks so much for sharing that video. ITS ALIIVE ! lol

the flow is not the best, i will be honest. i have two powerheads in there but theyre on the cheap end. ive been working hard to save up money for a decent wavemaker and im dropping by the LFS tomorrow to get something proper this time. super excited about that! haha

i use salifert's test kits. nitrates 0 phosphates 0.1

i tried the test where you shake the algae sample then filter it through a paper towel and leave the filtered water in a glass for a while. unless i did it wrong, theres no sign of algae in the glass. when i tried to shake the algae in a container, it didnt disappear but instead clumped.


baekhsong

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Reply #12

this is what i managed

Ratvan

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Reply #13

thanks so much for sharing that video. ITS ALIIVE ! lol

the flow is not the best, i will be honest. i have two powerheads in there but theyre on the cheap end. ive been working hard to save up money for a decent wavemaker and im dropping by the LFS tomorrow to get something proper this time. super excited about that! haha

i use salifert's test kits. nitrates 0 phosphates 0.1

i tried the test where you shake the algae sample then filter it through a paper towel and leave the filtered water in a glass for a while. unless i did it wrong, theres no sign of algae in the glass. when i tried to shake the algae in a container, it didnt disappear but instead clumped.

How long has it been sitting? Is it in ambient light? If it doesn't reappaear in the glass sample it most likely isn't Dino's, but cyano or something else

First I would try aiming one powerhead at the water's surface, the other at the base of the tank where the algae is thickest. Can you remove it manually? If so I would vacuum as much up as possible during regular maintenance

baekhsong

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Reply #14

How long has it been sitting? Is it in ambient light? If it doesn't reappaear in the glass sample it most likely isn't Dino's, but cyano or something else

First I would try aiming one powerhead at the water's surface, the other at the base of the tank where the algae is thickest. Can you remove it manually? If so I would vacuum as much up as possible during regular maintenance

i have one powerhead aiming right at that spot but obviously its not doing anything because the algae managed to grow there. hah and i have another powerhead disrupting the water surface. I think they're just not powerful enough. that spot gets a lot of light from the light setup and maybe very very faint from window too but my room is facing away from the sun so i never get proper sunlight.

it started growing some time last monday but towards this week its gotten super ugly. im trying to remember what changes i made to my setup and i remembred i added a filter sock in the sump. im wondering if that made things worse because initially i was hoping to catch all detritus but the sock gets reeaaallly dirty. could the reason be then that im overstocked? the DT is 80 litres and sump is 30 litres when return pump is on. i have a clownfish and a poop machine (bicolour blenny), and my cleanup crew includes cleaner shrimp, 3 astraea spiny snails, 1 paradise snail, 1 strawberry conch and 2 cowries. i also have a squat lobster but not sure if he counts lol. i got a buuunch of bristle worms too. i got a fuge which is full of live rock and some grape caulerpa and its a whole city of copepods. everything in the tank is healthy and doing amazing.

i can definitely vacuum it but im starting to run out of sand and my conch needs a deep sandbed so im guessing i will need to top up with new sand.

ive had cyano before but it was red that time. i guess it does look like cyano again but i was unsure because its only on the sandbed, and the colour is different this time.
Last Edit: May 22, 2020 1:03:33 pm by baekhsong

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