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Official Bacterial Driven Thread

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BillyC View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote BillyC Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 06 2012 at 10:18am
Which hanna phosphate checker are you guys using? I use the "ultra low range" one so I'm curious because I know there is a normal range one too.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Davidwillis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 06 2012 at 2:41pm
I have the standard one.  I think I got it before they made the ultra low range one.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Davidwillis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 07 2012 at 3:59pm
I am starting to get a little bit of brown algae growing on my 1/4" deep sand bed (I removed most of my sand when i cleaned out the tank).  I don't know if it is due to nutrients still in the sand, or if it is in the water and not detected by my test kits.  I am still debating on adding vinegar.  I guess If I see nitrates or phosphates go up I will start.  I don't see how it will help or how I will be able to get my baseline if nitrates and phosphates are at undetectable levels already.

Edited by Davidwillis - March 07 2012 at 4:00pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Ryan Thompson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 07 2012 at 4:04pm
The "brown algae" could be diatoms from you stirring up the sand bed while removing some sand.

If you have some serious algae issues, you have nitrates and phosphates. Your test kits aren't measuring anything because the algae is sucking them out of the system.

If you have a good enough skimmer, throw in a small amount of vinegar every day for a week or so and see how things go. I would start out VERY slow though. Maybe add 1mL a day and slowly increase from there.

I haven't dealt with Vinegar but I know it is 8x weaker than Vodka.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Davidwillis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 07 2012 at 4:18pm
Maybe I should explain exactly what I have done.   I removed my protein skimmer, and hiatt system and replaced it with macro algae (don't ask why.....).  After that I started getting algae growing (that was about a year ago).  About a week ago my tank was completely full of hair algae, so I hooked my hiat system back up (refreshed with new bacteria), then removed almost all my sand, scrubbed all the algae off the rocks, glass, and everything, and did a 50% water change, and added a protein skimmer, and removed the macro algae.  I didn't test before to see what the nutrient levels were, but ever since then they have been undetectable.

My guess it that it is like you said, the algae removed the nutrients, and now that the algae is gone it will start going up, and the algae come back.  Or the hiatt system along with the protein skimmer will now keep the nutrients low (however even with the hiatt system and protien skimmer before my algae problem, my phosphates were always around 0.10).

I like the idea of adding a small amount of vinegar though.  Do you think 1mL is about the right amount for about 45-50 gal of water (29gal tank, 30gal sump).

P.s.

It does look like diotoms.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Davidwillis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 08 2012 at 6:43pm
I added 1ml of vinegar last night, even thought my nitrate and phosphate still are undetectable.  No noticeable changes in skimmate (amount or color).  However my algae on the sand has increased to the point where the entire bed is covered with a brown coating with bubbles in it (everywhere where there is light hitting the sand).  It looks a lot like cyano now, except whenever I have had cyano it is purple.

edit:  here is a picture of the sand




Edited by Davidwillis - March 08 2012 at 6:52pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote kellerexpress Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 08 2012 at 7:52pm
The air bubbles makes me think that is dinoflagellates, not cyano. I highly doubt this is related to the vinegar, especially since you added such a small amount. It is probably related to the recent cleaning and sand removal. Here is an article about dinos.
http://reefkeeping.com/issues/2006-11/rhf/index.php
I would love some other opinions but I'm pretty sure that's what you have.



Edited by kellerexpress - March 08 2012 at 7:54pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote kellerexpress Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 08 2012 at 7:58pm
Just an update with my tank, i have been dosing vineger for a month now, and have had no problems what-so-ever. Skimmer is pulling tons of nasty skim, corals are looking great and water is super clear. No traces of cyano.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Davidwillis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 08 2012 at 8:26pm
I am sure my problem is not from the vinegar, in fact it started before I added the vinegar.  However I am hoping the vinegar will reduce nutrients enough to stop it. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Akira Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 08 2012 at 9:47pm
After an ICH issue  I raised my temp to 78f  and did a 20 g water change on a 90g system . But i vacumed out my sump and vacumed the sand. I had a huge outbreak of algae, thought maybe bryopsis but it looked more  like brown diatom. It was growing on my glass also , I soft wiped half off (was on my sand too) . Then i doubled my snails  they ate most of it ,no water change or cleaning my sand. My skimmer was so dark and nasty for a few weeks. Now im clean again . This was all it took . But i later learned my test kit was old and as soon as I readjusted my dosing , life is better. Not sure this will help but Im sure I created it just took a min to figure it out ........just my 02
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Akira Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 08 2012 at 9:49pm
BTW my sand looked kinda like urs then it moved to my glass .
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Davidwillis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 08 2012 at 9:55pm
interesting.... I don't have any snails, and only one hermit crab...

I just did 2ml of vinegar tonight (that is still a very low dosage).
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Ryan Thompson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 08 2012 at 10:18pm
Originally posted by Davidwillis Davidwillis wrote:

I don't have any snails,

This is part of the problem. You have NOTHING to eat your algae.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote kellerexpress Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 08 2012 at 11:22pm
I agree, you need to seriously beef up your cuc
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Davidwillis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 10 2012 at 10:52am
True, I did have more, but that was a couple years ago, and all the snails have died, and all but one hermit crab has died.
Yesterday I only ran my lights for 3 hours, and that seems to have reduced the algae a lot.  still dosing 2ml of vinegar/day.  Nitrates, and phosphates still undetectable.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Ryan Thompson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 11 2012 at 12:20pm
Originally posted by Davidwillis Davidwillis wrote:

True, I did have more, but that was a couple years ago, and all the snails have died, and all but one hermit crab has died.
Yesterday I only ran my lights for 3 hours, and that seems to have reduced the algae a lot.  still dosing 2ml of vinegar/day.  Nitrates, and phosphates still undetectable.

You need to replace snails about every 6 months. For me, about half of mine die every 3 months and I replace those.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote rufessor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 14 2012 at 1:44pm
JUST to bump further for Vinegar.  I have been doing this for a while now, mix up concentrated KalkWasser with about 1/2 the amount of vinegar needed to neutralize the Kalk, and use it as ATO water which is supplied via continuous drip.  I add about 9 TBSP of vinegar and 9 tsp of Kalk Paste in about 9 gallons of water to my 57 gallon tank per week.  It is amazing how little maintenance I need to do on this tank.  Top off the ATO, add reef Fuel and a little Mg supplement a couple days a week and everything in it is doing extremely well.

I don't run around advocating for this system much, in fact have only mentioned it one time in another thread when I thought it might help someone with a problem in there tank.  

Its easy, cheap, and works.

As for Vodka vs vinegar and growth of unwanteds, the two compounds enter metabolism in quite different points with the most likely outcome in the catabolic use of ethanol being conversion in the cell to.... acetic acid... or vinegar in two steps!  Ethanol actually has a bit more "energy" (because the two steps to get to acetic acid release energy the cell uses) in it so depending upon the organism in question, the prevalence of the required metabolic enzymes its propensity to bloom under supplementation of one or the other may change markedly with ethanol providing more "bang" for the buck.  Asside from the fact that the vinegar most people use is much less concentrated than the vodka most people use (from a # of molecules in a given volume standpoint) the vodka is also higher "octane" with respect to revving up metabolism with energy.  

So... a given dose of vodka is both more concentrated and more powerful metabolically.  Thus things tend to or would be expected to (is probably the more appropriate phrasing) bloom a bit more robustly under vodka supplementation.
Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler -A.E.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote kellerexpress Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 14 2012 at 4:15pm
Thanks for the info! Glad to hear things are doing well with the vinegar, I too love the low maintenece part of it.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote TSUNAMI Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 30 2012 at 5:41pm
I've been interested in this for awhile, and I think I'm ready to take the plunge...or readyish. I'm thinking I'll try vinegar at first, the way Kevin is using it, added to my kalk ato; I also got some mb7 that I was planning to use at a small dose, like 2 times a week. So I do have at least one question: How does everyone feel about filter socks? I currently run one like 4 days on, 1 off... But IDK, does it make more sense to not run one at all? Any input would be appreciated. Thanks, Dustin
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote BillyC Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 30 2012 at 10:01pm
I run socks 24/7, always have and always will. I feel it keeps my water crispy clear almost as if there is no water at all. Unless you're concerned about the amount of laundry or cost of filter socks I see no reason to not run them 24/7 unless I missing something?
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