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Well....FML

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Cowan View Drop Down
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    Posted: May 25 2015 at 8:49am
Woke up this morning to my wife telling me 'Get up! All the fish are dead!!" 

Sure enough, every single one of them. I had turned the pumps off to do some feeding and neglected to turn them back on. 

Time to start over, but what do I need to do first? I'm still watching the coral to see how they fair, there are a good amount of crabs and snails that made it and it looks like my cucumber is ok. 

What steps should I take?
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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: May 25 2015 at 9:07am
Turn the pumps back on.
Remove the dead.
Replace the AC with new. 
That's all. Watch patiently. 
Chances are, the coral will survive. 
I never turn off the water to feed and for the rare time that I feed dry foods, I swish it down into the water a little at a time to let the fish eat it before it goes over the overflow. In the wild, fish catch food as it rushes past. I suggest never again turning off the water to feed unless there is a controller with a "feed" button(which I personally wouldn't use anyway).

Aloha,
Mark  Hug
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Cowan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 25 2015 at 9:39am
Thanks Mark, this is a mistake I won't make again. I'm not running AC right now, I have purigen and a biopellet reactor

Edited by Cowan - May 25 2015 at 9:39am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote BobC63 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 25 2015 at 10:17am

Sorry for your loss.

I am with Mark; I never turn off my pumps when I feed... the amount of food that will make it into the overflow in the few minutes that the fish are feeding is negligible.

if your biopellet reactor was also off the whole time you may need to replace the media. But I do not run one of those - so get a 2nd opinion from someone who does...


- My Current Tank: 150g Mixed Reef -

* Marine & Reef tanks since 1977 *
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Cowan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 25 2015 at 10:29am
Thanks guys....I plan on taking this time to make any corrections to the chemistry that I can. I am not sure if I need to clean out the sandbed really well or replace it all together. I have been having high nitrates, but not having any real adverse effects from it, aside from a little algae. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote jdinchak Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 25 2015 at 11:07am
Do you have a controller? You can use an auto feed timer and it will turn back on after a certain amount of time.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Adam Blundell Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 25 2015 at 11:28am
I agree with Mark.

Adam

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mike Savage Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 25 2015 at 1:23pm
I don't turn off the pumps to feed either. I do turn off the pumps when I do a water change though and rely on the Apex to turn them back on. I'm sorry to hear of your loss.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mark Peterson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 25 2015 at 2:08pm
In my experience, biopellets are a fad that we have found to be unnecessary and actually harmful at times (like this). The biopellet process (carbon dosing) uses a bunch of Oxygen, essentially stealing it from the system. With the system not sufficiently oxygenated, my opinion is that the fish quickly suffocated during the night. They were also compromised by low pH, which dropped too low because of the natural increased nighttime imbalance of too much CO2 and too little O2.

We may be able to help you improve your system so that the next time the pumps are off, like during a power outage, fish will survive. If this sounds good, please tell us about your system and post a pic of the tank and a pic of the sump. What size tank is it and what has been the issue with Nitrates?

Aloha,
Mark  Hug

P.S.
All reef aquariums must use AC. Period. Forget every other media, except the occasional PO4 removal media and forget skimming. Skimming us useful but incomplete. AC is the one thing that is absolutely necessary for removing certain organic molecules that are naturally dissolved in the water from all the animals, both the living ones and the dead ones.


Edited by Mark Peterson - May 25 2015 at 2:18pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Adam Blundell Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 25 2015 at 3:10pm
Crazy talk.  I never use AC in systems, nor do I recommend it to others.

Adam

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tileman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 25 2015 at 4:23pm
I have to agree with Mark.  I have done both and my tank and the health of the tank does so much better when using Activated carbon.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mark Peterson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 28 2015 at 6:09am
Originally posted by Adam Blundell Adam Blundell wrote:

Crazy talk.  I never use AC in systems, nor do I recommend it to others.

Adam

I didn't realize that! I believe you get away without using AC because you do such massive water changes, like around 50%. Also, your current livestock is pretty much all soft coral, anemones and fish, with no stony coral. Please don't get me wrong my old friend. Your tank is stunningly beautiful, but it's less sensitive to allelopathic toxins than a tank housing stony coral.



Aloha,
Mark  Hug
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Indu Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 28 2015 at 8:36am
Mark,

Is 'Lignite Carbon' equivalent to AC?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Adam Blundell Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 28 2015 at 9:18am
Do you think stony coral are more sensitive to toxins and allopathic reactions?

Adam
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Corey Price Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 30 2015 at 11:03pm
I think you should use AC just to give Adam a hard time.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Adam Blundell Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 31 2015 at 8:03am
Nothing wrong with carbon. It does work. I'm just saying it's not some magic cure, nor some necessity. A bazillion tanks out there not using it (like ro, skimmers, garlic, frozen food, etc).

Adam
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote relethg Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 31 2015 at 8:13am
Adam, 

 I still have not made it over to see your tank even though you invited me. Could you layout how you run your tank for us that are not in the know. Being new I thought carbon was required if you wanted to remove organic toxins. I would be interested in knowing how your tank is set up so that you don't use it.

Thanks Glenn
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mark Peterson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 31 2015 at 8:39am
Originally posted by Adam Blundell Adam Blundell wrote:

Do you think stony coral are more sensitive to toxins and allopathic reactions?

Adam
SPS, yes.

Lignite Carbon?
It may have less impurities, but the difference between AC made from Lignite Coal and Bituminous coal may not be significant. Compare this to the use of purified water. Some people think that using water that has passed over De-ionizing resine(DI) is better than water straight from the Reverse Osmosis(RO) membrane. The actual difference in impurities is not significant for reef aquarium purposes where so many reef animals actually feed on those impurities. A hobbyist may use tap water completely successfully where the city tap water is sufficiently free of deleterious compounds. These kinds of things are usually a matter of personal preference as much as economic efficiency.

AC in a Reactor?
AC should not be tumbled in a reactor. The resulting AC dust can create issues for reef animals. Water passing over/through a media bag of AC placed in a good flow area or near a pumps intake screen is entirely sufficient for removing the toxins. The same procedure works perfectly fine for Activated Alumina, which in my opinion, is a better, faster way to remove Phosphate and Silica.

Aloha,
Mark  Hug
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Adam Blundell Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 31 2015 at 6:24pm
Glenn-
well about anything works.  For me, I do run a massive skimmer all day and all night.  I love and use high wave flow.  And I use a ton of coral to filter my tank.  I'm a big fan of water changes, and I like to about 50% or more when I do a water change.  I have a basic rubbermaid sump, with sand in it and that's it.  I'm just in Centerville, come on over any time... bring a camera.

Sps- certainly sensitive to nutrients, but most people don't worry about toxins with them.  In fact at every single show in the world people put sps right by soft corals in frag tanks without any worry of them fighting each other.  They do keep that water nutrient free!

And when I do run carbon I always use it in my filter sock or even better in a reactor.  I love reactors.  I have probably three of them sitting in my garage for the day I decide to run carbon for something.  I'd keep that carbon tumbling if I were using it.

Adam
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