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  1. #1
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    Hello everyone. Got a question.

    Looking at my information will tell you that I started this hobby not too long ago. I've been able to get a hold of most of the basic concepts, and I've been experimenting with my stuff to fill in the gaps. Most of the time I find the answers to my questions on this board, and I want to thank you guys for that. Believe it or not, I've found a problem that I cannot find an answer to on this board (yet) and so today I finnally registered to make my first post. Without further a-do, here it is:

    I am using 300 watts on my 55g main. (That's just just about 5 and a half watts per gallon, for those of you running for your calculators). I've gone through 4 algae blooms so far, but right now the water and tank walls are as clear as can be. I leave the lights off a lot of the time because I am trying to avoid another algae bloom (or a comeback by the last species). What I am finding, however is that when I do turn the lights on the water is perfectly clear - just awesome - for the first minute or so. Following is a cloud of bubbles that is thin at first, but then expands to fill the entire tank and becomes dense enough to be a nuisance. I have not yet timed how long it takes once the lights are off again for the bubbles to go away, but I am just hoping that someone here has run into this before.

    My readings are 0,0,10 8.5ph 80f. I am still working the temperature down slowly as a door got left open and I had to throw in a second heater to help keep up with the terribly cold room temperature.

    Help, anyone?
    "Killed your clownfish? That's 30 days in the electric chair for you!"

  2. #2
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    Welcome to the board jmg5297
    If your tank is relativity new then the ugly algae is just one of the stages that the setup will go through on its way to becoming stable.
    Are you using RO / DI water or distilled water? If not your water source is likely part of the problem.
    As for the bubbles I will venture to guess that they are the result of the algae producing oxygen in response to the lights being turned on. This would also stop when the lights are turned off. I bet your PH also rises when this is occurring if the effect is allowed to continue unabated. Adding oxygen to the water will raise PH.
    I have however never heard of this happening as quickly as you are describing it so perhaps others with first hand experience can chime in with some more information ... or correct my venture.
    Rob

  3. #3
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    The only time I didn't use RO water was for startup - at which time I used a garden hose. I figured this would be okay because it would be a couple of months before I even thought about adding anything delicate to my system, and local water is perfectly suited (pH wise) for the hobby. Since then I have used nothing but water out of my RO unit.

    It is very possible that I have some fast growing algae in the tank right now. The latest bloom was some sort of water-born species. I had the skimmers running normally, and unfortunately one overflowed while I was gone (dumping "nutrients" into the water). I've since thrown that piece of trash skimmer into the trash, and haven't had that kind of problem. Be careful what LFS you trust. Those guys sold me that skimmer for $125 used, and it's been only problems. They said it was their best model.

    Anywho - It could be said that the nutrient dump is feeding algae, which is in turn making the bubbles. Is this true now that I have my water back to 0,0,10?
    "Killed your clownfish? That's 30 days in the electric chair for you!"

  4. #4
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    If that last number is nitrate then that along with the start up water is a big part of your algae issue. Reduce that nitrate number with water changes and let the algae use up its other sources of food. It will burn its-self out if it has no food to live on.
    Rob

  5. #5
    Senior Member reefmutt's Avatar
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    Hey doesn't anybody welcome new comers anymore!?!?
    [welcome]
    to a.c. John!
    As to your bizarre problem...never heard of it in my life. Do you have fish in the tank? Have you tried doing a gravel siphoning to mix up the sand bed?
    I know that some garden hoses have an antibacterial impregnated in the rubber... Maybe that has something to do with it.
    Maybe its an algea spore of some type living in the sand. How deep is the sand bed and what does it consist of?
    Matt.

    Old system torn down to make a playroom.. planning a 62x42x28 high

  6. #6
    Senior Member piatchie's Avatar
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    Welcome! Sorry I don't have access to the nice fish and welcome sign! Just Smillies:biggrinbo As for your trouble....Sorry I can't help there either but chances are, someone on here has heard of it before! Give it time, someone will chime in!
    :fish3:Piatchie:fish3:

    Why is it called "cargo" when it goes by ship, and "shipment" when it goes by car?

  7. #7
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    To One Salty Dog > The last number is indeed nitrate. I thought that anything below 40 is survivable? With such a new tank it would probably take twice a week changes to keep the nitrates constantly below 10 ... Though I will be trying a new plant in my sump that some people have recommended which will help with nitrates. I am not sure what it is called, but a lot of people have apparently used it in their tanks with sea horses, etc.

    To reefmutt > I have many fish in my tank. My setup is 6 months old. I have sugar sized aragonite for substrate. The depth of this bottom goes anywhere between 1.5 inches to 3.5 inches in places where it has been naturally altered to be that deep. I say naturally altered because I have several different livestock to keep the substrate moving - the main guy in charge of the substrate getting so deep would be my diamond goby - who had created this depth by digging out under a rock for his home. The deep sugar sized substrate could be a problem normally, but it's REALLY kept moving between my goby, sand shifter star, clownfish (who goes to the bottom and moves it around believe it or not), tiger tail cucumber, and horse shoe crab. I believe that this specialized cleaning crew would get anything bad out of the sand - they keep it as white as the day that it came out of the bag. Believe me, it took me a while to get it this way. As far as garden hoses - It's been six months since the hose touched any water in the tank. I discount the idea of it being the problem because: 1) This is a new problem. 2) I have changed out all of the water in the tank several times through regular water changes and whatever the hose contributed would be either incredibly dilouted or gone.

    Thanks for the quick replies! You guys are great. Once again, if anyone has experienced this before please don't be shy to share what you have found.
    "Killed your clownfish? That's 30 days in the electric chair for you!"

  8. #8
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    10 is not an ugly number in a fish only setup but it is still nitrate and nitrate is GOOD food for diatoms and higher Algae. How many fish do you have in your tank? .. perhaps it is over stocked? Fish and other live stock produce other substances as an end result of them living in your aquarium. These substances become dissolved into the water that can un-balance the setup. These other substances include phenols, amines, phosphates and sulfates to name a few. All of these and several others will if left unchecked throw the system out of balance. If the tank is heavily stocked perhaps more frequent and or larger water changes are needed. how much water do you change out and how often.
    Rob

  9. #9
    Senior Member Bonaqua's Avatar
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    Do you have any algea in the fuge??
    Does the same thing hapen there?

  10. #10
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    to one salty dog > 55g tank currently has 10+ turbo snails, 1 blue tang, 1 maroon yellow-striped clown, 3 3-striped damsels, 1 diamond watchman goby, 1 purple psuedochromis, 1 horseshoe crab, 1 sand shifting star, 1 tiger tail cucumber, and a large cleaner shrimp.

    I am absolutely positive that this would be a lot for a new tank without the equipment to handle it all. I do have 65 pounds of live rock, 2 skimmers, and the big emperor. I do water changes of 10% every week, and I keep feeding down to what I believe is acceptable. The tank is currently fish only. I plan to take back 2 damsels and start working with reef in the future - though I will wait possibly until the 1-year mark.

    Is all of this okay?
    "Killed your clownfish? That's 30 days in the electric chair for you!"

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