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Sick Nepthea, What is wrong?

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Joined: July 07 2012
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    Posted: February 08 2014 at 9:24pm
I have some type of scum attacking my nepthea.  What should I do? You can see the black area in the middle.


Here is a picture of a frag originally taken from the sick coral.  this one is not affected... yet.


Now, 3 hours later I return home and the affected coral is leaning over and looks like it is dying. 


If you look at the main branch, you can see an area where the outer surface seems to be discolored and it is sloughing off.  

I have had this coral for about 10 months, and have only cut off the one section about 3 months ago.

Here is a picture of the whole tank from earlier today if that helps.



65 Gal, 30 gallon sump, Cadlights Skimmer, Caetomorphea and fern calerpa in refugium on reverse light schedule.  GFO and Activated Carbon - Clear FX Pro, Last changed 3 weeks ago.  I have No water test kits, usually take water to LSF to have tested every few weeks. 

Thanks for any suggestions.

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New to Salt, trying to learn :). 65 gal.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Drippin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 08 2014 at 9:27pm
Forgot to add lighting info:

 2 - 250 Watt Metal Halide, and 2 -65 Watt Actintic CF.  Metal Halides run on timer 8 hours a day, Compact florescent are mannually put on and off run about 14-15 hours a day.  Blue led's at night.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mark Peterson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 09 2014 at 9:57am
Aloha,

Sorry it took so long for someone to respond to your emergency. I'm always available by phone.
According to a guest we had that spoke about octocoral, I believe that is accurately identified as green Sinularia, same species as the pink Sinularia I see in your tank but not the same as the Kenya Tree/Capnella species. All three get mistaken for Nepthea which is a non photosynthetic octocoral that lives in caves and under shelves.

I've seen that problem many times, more than I can count. Brush off the black with a tooth brush daily. Redirect the water flow for more random flow on that coral without blasting it directly.

Are the Alk, Ca and Mg levels within range? What were the numbers at last test?

As far as redirecting the water flow, move the powerheads down as close as possible to the bottom back and pointed up. Aim the water stream to shoot diagonally up to the center surface of the water so that it boils the surface like the pic below. Where the two streams collide, the water swirls and changes direction in a downward swirling motion. After years of experimentation this is the best use of powerheads I have found for circulation, gas exchange and random flow.

Mark Hug
808-345-1049 call/text/visit anytime





Edited by Mark Peterson - February 09 2014 at 5:16pm
Reefkeeping Tips, & quick, easy setup tricks:
www.utahreefs.com/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=9244
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Drippin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 10 2014 at 6:36am
Mark,

Thanks for your help.  I feel embarrassed that I ID'ed this incorrectly.  I appreciate knowing that it is Green Sinularia.  

I have scrubbed it down with a toothbrush, and I am getting water tested today.  I am also going to pick up a new recirculating pump, and plan to redirect them as you have described.  

Thanks again for your help.  I have a couple of other questions that I will PM to you.

Derek

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