A funny thing happened on the way to the forum..

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There, that's my boardroom bingo done.
Anyway, I was just about to do some replying to the helpful hints I've been given about my clown-popeye, when I decided to do some testing on the silicates (some of you may remember my post in the thread about best de-nitrate product sarted by DUSTYBOY).
I had it would appear a LOT of silicates, and I'd narrowed it down to the caribsea sand in the DT, and when I'd tested it ,it was very high and the sump with the LED grow light facing the chaeto had developed a very quickly growing dusting of diatom algae, in fact, my maxspect blocks were in danger of becoming overwhelmed withit.

So, I'd knicked a pop sock off the Doris, put a smallish amount of Seachem Phosguard in it a few days ago, and stuck it on the return pump.

This morning, on said way to forum, I looked into the sump and saw my maxspect blocks seemed to have alopecia, the brown diatoms had disappeared in places after having given the blocks a dark coating by the night before.
You can see in the pic how dark some areas still are on the blocks.
So I tested the DT water for silicates, retested, retested again, and then tested a fourth time (tap water this last time) cos I thought the test kit was wrong.
But no, there were no readable results of silicates, in just a few days!

Now I don't know if this was the Phosguard, or the chaeto, or a mixture of both, but results were brilliant.
I'm guessing the chaeto played a large part because the nitrates had halved since I goit back from hols to about 12.5-15ppm

marine_newbie

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Reply #1

Phosguard is supposed to lower silicates as well as phosphate, so good to know it worked
I guess that with no new silicates being introduced in the tank (unlike phosphates and nitrates from food/waste) the phosguard had enough capacity to absorb it all? 


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mightyhatter

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Reply #2

Great news chap! Really pleased you have managed to get on top of it! Onwards and upwards!

semiroundel

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Reply #3

Well, all change again. As you'll see in the photo, the (possibly) diatom algae is back again, and what has changed?
What has changed is that I've been feeding the two clowns a block of food a day, split up over three feeds, morning, tea time and night.
Bearing in mind that these blocks are half the size of the ones I'm used to, they are about 1cmx1cmx1.5cm TMC Gamma blister pack artemia with Garlic, but the clowns have eaten all the food, or so I thought.
Well the resultant bio load has made the chaeto go berserk (also visible in the photo) so how much do I need to harvest?
I will of course, do a whole gammut of tests now, as I want to see how the living rock and my Maxspect blocks have coped and if the filtaration is up to par... watch this space.

mightyhatter

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Reply #4

Feeding levels is always an interesting debate! I know lots of the BRS and other videos reckon most people over feed but you rarely get a decent direction on the 'right' amount. I also know a lot of big reefers deliberately feed heavily but have a massive setup to export the excess nutrients (sounds like your fuge is doing a good job for you!)

For what it is worth i also use those gamma cubes. I feed about a third of a cube per feed, once or twice a day. (2 clowns, goby, firefish and six line wrasse). Fish all seem to do well and nitrates are still higher than i would like (no fuge though)

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semiroundel

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Reply #5

Also, I did notice on that photo, and I checked with my finger, some GHA on the middle section ( just a dot of it) after the filter floss and before the maxspect blocks (that now have a sheet of wadding on them to prevent any algae from appearing on the blocks themselves).
So it looks like I'll have to hurry up with the ATS and the skimmer being put into use.
Today, I got 8 more nessarius, and two Tuxedo urchins, here's hoping that they help that cleanup operation.

semiroundel

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Reply #6

BTW, how much chaeto should I harvest?

mightyhatter

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Reply #7

Have never run a fuge myself (hopefully that might change in the near future if i can sort out a new tank!) but think i have seen videos suggestimg harvesting back to the size of a large apple? (Personally wouldnt necessarily trust me on this one though! Sure someone else can provide a more informed answer!!!)

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semiroundel

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Reply #8

That does sound about right, though I think I'd be happier with a small gallia melon

semiroundel

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Reply #9

Ok so:
0 ammonia
0 nitrite
10ppm nitrate (down on last time from 25ppm)
0.26 phosphate (down from 0.29ppm last time)
 Although these levels aren't ideal, I'm actually very happy as I've been feeding 1 cube per day, so I actually expected the phosphate and nitrate to go up.
I'm sending some of my chaeto to a forum member, if anyone else wants some on the next harvesting please say here, it may be a few weeks though

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