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**Xenia Crash?**

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improdigal View Drop Down
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    Posted: July 29 2004 at 7:30am

Hola fellow fish s,

My xenia have all up and died on me. I pulled them out as soon as I saw they were dead, but the tank water STINKS! I did a 20% water change.....still stinks.

Suggestions? Are my other corals in danger?

Patrick
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ssilcox Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 29 2004 at 7:42am

Do you run carbon? If not get some in there. Also, I would have done a little bigger water change if the water was that bad off. How much xenia did you have!??!

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote improdigal Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 29 2004 at 7:45am

Just a couple small pieces actually (2-3" each). They were larger when I got them, but they all shrivel up and darken under my lights, but they normally live that way indefinitely. I had one die and they all seemed to follow suit.

Carbon is only a couple weeks old, should I change it out already?



Edited by improdigal
Patrick
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Mark Peterson View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mark Peterson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 29 2004 at 8:10am
IMO Carbon only lasts about a week.

Have you read "The Lessons of Xenia" in the June 2000 issue of the Sea Star Online?

This very thing is why I advise against a Xenia Refugium.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Travis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 29 2004 at 8:34am

What lighting do you have??  I agree that carbon usally only seems to last about a week or so.  I would change it out and test for nitrates.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Carl Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 29 2004 at 9:44am

Originally posted by Mark Peterson Mark Peterson wrote:

IMO Carbon only lasts about a week.

I will STRONGLY disagree with this. It is truly impossible to say how long Activated Carbon lasts in an individuals system, but unless they have a really polluted tank, one could assume that it will last longer than a week. It's a matter of aDsorption and aBsorption. In other words, how plugged up does it get. To extend the life of the media you can backflush it or simply rinse it out in fresh water. I can run media beds of AC monitored for efficiency and effluent quality results in a 27" pressurized vessel for a year or more without changing it out. And the influent is much more contaminated than our tank water. Let me climb off of this dead horse....

Improdigal, congradulations on finding a way to get rid of your xenia! How did you do it, I want to know!  Honestly, sorry that happened. I suggest running activated carbon (do you know where to place it for the best results?) and doing a couple more water changes if needed. But how much was really in there? My tank will stink a bit when I propogate my xenia (I call it weeding my reef) and it will clear in a couple of hours. And I have alot of xenia!



Edited by Carl
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"I believe that forgiving them is God's function. Our job is simply to arrange the meeting." - Gen. H. Norman Schwarzkopf
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote improdigal Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 29 2004 at 10:05am

Hi Carl,

I had very little xenia actually.

I'm curious about proper placement of the carbon. The person I bought it from just had a mesh bag full of carbon floating in the sump, so I've just done the same, I just refill the bag with new carbon. Any probs with that?

Patrick
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ssilcox Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 29 2004 at 10:26am
You just need to place it in an area where water will flow through it, to get best results. Just floating it in the sump probably wont get the results you want, unless it is in a high-flow area.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Travis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 29 2004 at 12:39pm

To extend the life of the media you can backflush it or simply rinse it out in fresh water.

Carl, does the backflush only work on organics & in-organics that are adsorbed??  or both adsorbed/ absorbed??  It is my understanding after AC has absorbed all it can there is no way to clean and re-use it. 

At any rate I agree it's impossible to tell someone else how long their carbon will last in their system but I have found in my systems that after a week or so the carbon does not seem to be doing as much... or at least I don't have the clear water associated with running carbon.  A lot also depends on the quality of carbon you purchase. 

Personally I have gone from running carbon 24/7 and changing it out monthly to running it around once a month for a week and it seems to be working.

 

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Shane H Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 29 2004 at 1:16pm
carbon? what's carbon?


I wouldn't panic about the xenia crash. I had a large amount that also crashed over a period of several weeks. I did a couple of small water changes and didn't have any additional problems. But, I have tried to keep xenia since then without any success. Strange ...
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Carl Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 29 2004 at 1:42pm
Originally posted by improdigal improdigal wrote:

I'm curious about proper placement of the carbon. 

What you really want to do it get the entire volume of water to pass through the media. Laying it in a sump somewhere will absorb some contaminants, and some will settle into the media. But the best way to filter is multiple passes through a specific media.

Originally posted by Travis Travis wrote:

 Carl, does the backflush only work on organics & in-organics that are adsorbed??  or both adsorbed/ absorbed??  

You pretty much have it Travis. The media has these tiny little cracks all over it which does two things. It increases the surface area for what can be absorbed (metals with most AC) and creates these little caverns that trap (ADsorb) particulate. Larger debris will get trapped or ADsorbed in between particles of media also.

Backflushing media by either reversing flow through it or running fresh water over it removes particulate contaminants. How this extends the life of the media is because it opens more surface area for contaminants to be ABsorbed as well as room for additional particulate to be ADsorbed.

I really think that there is a misconception of what Activated Carbon really does. It is not a cure-all and is generally "designed" to remove a target set of contaminants. Particulate is best removed by a seperate media, such as filter paper, mesh screen, cellular plastics or other material, etc. Anything to remove particulate to a desired particle size without saturating the media too quickly.

I agree with Shane though, I wouldn't worry about too much residual contamination with just a small population. They just stink for a bit, do some water changes and it shall be completely satisfactory. (for the kids... It's all good).



Edited by Carl
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"I believe that forgiving them is God's function. Our job is simply to arrange the meeting." - Gen. H. Norman Schwarzkopf
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote acerob Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 29 2004 at 1:59pm
Carl, I'm impressed.  I think that is the most knowledge that I have seen you share.  And all this time I just thought that you were the muscle behind this operation.
Highland, UT

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote improdigal Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 29 2004 at 2:09pm

Originally posted by acerob acerob wrote:

Q. Why is it that every time I stick my hands in my tank I knock something over??

How come everytime I do ANYTHING to my tank all hell breaks loose (today's catastrophe thanks to a dead Xenia and a water change).



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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Carl Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 29 2004 at 2:16pm
Originally posted by acerob acerob wrote:

Carl, I'm impressed.  I think that is the most knowledge that I have seen you share.  And all this time I just thought that you were the muscle behind this operation.
   I just play dumb. The chicks dig it. Besides, I am serious enough with work... it's fun to have an out. Hope nobody minds. If so, meet me out back and we'll talk about it.

Edited by Carl
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Carl Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 29 2004 at 2:25pm

Originally posted by improdigal improdigal wrote:

How come everytime I do ANYTHING to my tank all hell breaks loose (today's catastrophe thanks to a dead Xenia and a water change).

 Welcome to one of the joys of the hobby. I learned not too long ago that it may be best to do less. We cannot control Mother Nature. Sure, we can influence her, we can establish and maintain certain parameters within our reefs. But, we must realize that we actually have less control over what happens in our systems than we think. Just do your best, but don't overdo it. Sit back and enjoy your tank more than work in it. Changes in nature are a progression generally so the animals have time to adjust. And when they are sudden, it is usually catastrauphic. With the limited amount of volume in even the largest aquariums, small changes can be felt large scale. So even when you think that something is drastically wrong, it usually may be best to not panic and make small adjustments. But, that's just my opinion.

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"I believe that forgiving them is God's function. Our job is simply to arrange the meeting." - Gen. H. Norman Schwarzkopf
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