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Algae Detachment

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by emil_arvidsson, Aug 8, 2019.

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  1. emil_arvidsson

    emil_arvidsson New Member

    1. My ats has been running for some six weeks and i get green nice growth and has been cleaning following Turbos guide for break in of screen. Only rinsed the 4 first weeks. Last 2 weeks I’ve rubbed the screen with my fingertips. On some small places the algae loosened like a film and fell off. No signs off detachment until I started rubbing the screen. I also dipped in freshwater last 2 weeks.

      Do I need to rough up the screen more on the mentioned areas ?
      I was really thorough when I roughened the screen though ( with a hole saw ) can’t imagine that I missed spots. Double - triple checked.

      Longer interval between cleanings ?

      This time I’ll let it grow 2 weeks without cleaning.

      I’ll post some pre / post pictures during the next harvest/cleaning.

      Regards Emil / Sweden :)
  2. emil_arvidsson

    emil_arvidsson New Member

    Any ideas ?
  3. Turbo

    Turbo Does not really look like Johnny Carson Staff Member Site Owner Multiple Units! Customer

    Sorry for the delay
    Rub & Rinse is from the start, you always want to cause detachment of anything that is very loosely attached. So you could have rubbed lightly during the first month. I'm not sure that matters with yours, just posting that mainly for others reading it.

    What could have happened is that you had some growth that clung on but would have detached had you been doing more than just rinsing, so that easily came off. Even a non-roughed-up screen will eventually get algae attachment. So that's not the problem, IMO

    10-14 days is fine.
  4. emil_arvidsson

    emil_arvidsson New Member

    Pictures / vids from yesterday’s cleaning - harvest. 14 days since last time. Here you can see that it comes off like a carpet which is a couple of millimeters thick. I only rubbed the screen with my fingertips, no tools used.

    Additional info:
    •Ats been running
    for 1 1/2 month
    •No - 3-5 Po - 0,04
    •Dosing iron daily
    •Dosing nopox

    A side before cleaning: 6D9C15B5-184F-482C-8565-1A717E6B0037.jpeg
    B side before cleaning: 0197FF4C-E802-4337-A08C-472121E27E8D.jpeg Algae comes off in “stripes” and “blanket/carpet” shape: 1BDD32D8-F338-4694-AF07-FFEC8C83AF4E.jpeg C37812B0-B7BD-487E-AFBB-A87C2E46B8ED.jpeg
    After cleaning. Both sides look like this after rubbing thoroughly with fingertips during rinsing: 02D273E6-FBF4-4DA6-9808-AE4292D7F49F.jpeg
  5. Turbo

    Turbo Does not really look like Johnny Carson Staff Member Site Owner Multiple Units! Customer

    Can you post a few pics of your scrubber and give us some parameters, such as overall dimensions, screen dims, flow rate, light fixtures, photoperiod, etc?

    Also tell us more about your system - how old is the system, what other filtration you are also using, livestock, feeding (type, amount, frequency, etc)?
  6. emil_arvidsson

    emil_arvidsson New Member

    Allright. Will do ASAP.
  7. emil_arvidsson

    emil_arvidsson New Member

    Ok, here we go :

    *Can you post a few pics of your scrubber

    *and give us some parameters, such as overall dimensions: ( Info from manufacturer - Sea Breeze ACU )
    The unit measures 32cms in length, 13cms width, 19cms height.

    *screen dims: ( Info from manufacturer - Sea Breeze ACU )
    The measurement of the screen is 30.5 cms wide. 14cms high.

    *flow rate:
    Im running a controllable dc pump through a ballvalve thats just a little closed, which gives approx 400 l/h

    *light fixtures: ( Info from manufacturer - Sea Breeze ACU )
    4 LED bars with heat sinks consisting of two sets of two bars of red & blue grow lights each side giving 36 bright LED?s to each side.
    2 bars of 15 watt led's are provided on each side to easily and fully illuminate the screen,
    The wavebands for leds are as follows red 630mm, blue 430mm there is a warranty of 1 year on all leds. growth ratings are for blue 400-470 nanometers and red is 610-720 nanometers.

    Tank lights 12pm to 12am ( 12hrs )
    Ats lights 12am to 6pm ( 18 hrs )

    *Also tell us more about your system ( 900 litres mixed reef )
    - how old is the system:
    5 years give or take

    *what other filtration you are also using:
    Uv filters, Polyfilter, Filter sock on returnpipe

    5 tangs + some misc small fish

    feeding : ( Every other day is frozen food, and the other day is dry food )

    Day 1:
    5 cubes of mysis/brineshrimp rinsed in rodi 3 times, and then pre soaked with vitamins.

    Day 2:
    0,25 dl Ocean Nutrition Algae Flakes + 0,25 dl Ocean Nutrition Brineshrimp - seafood flakes
    1pc of 15 x 15 cm Nori Algae + 2cms ball of Easy Reefs Masstick ( doughlike seafood/protein food )

  8. Turbo

    Turbo Does not really look like Johnny Carson Staff Member Site Owner Multiple Units! Customer

    Offhand, I don't see anything very far out of line. Scrubber looks sized about right for the tank and feeding, flow is good, lighting is good

    It's only 6 weeks old though, so it's likely you're just getting through the initial break-in period.

    You don't need to dip the screen in freshwater, in fact, I wouldn't. You can rinse in tap water, but you don't really need to soak in FW. You might just need to give it more time to fill in, it looks like it has started reasonably well. The "skin" coating should transition to fuller GHA eventually.

    It won't hurt to remove the screen once a week and swipe your palm across it to remove any loosely attached growth, including the slime/skin type growth. You can do this as often as every 3-4 days. That might help keep it at bay and allow the more well anchored GHA to spread on the screen. Just a swipe on each side and a quick rinse in room-temp tap water, that's all.

    Don't scrape or scrub the screen at all until you start to get growth that covers the mesh to the point where you can't see the pattern of the plastic canvas.

    Keep us posted!

  9. emil_arvidsson

    emil_arvidsson New Member

    Ok, great input !
    Ill try this, and keep posting images and progression !
  10. emil_arvidsson

    emil_arvidsson New Member

    CF871A48-F003-4AE3-95A6-F40BCD5E9914.jpeg Pic from today.
    I have only done smaller cleaning ( every 4-5th day ) of the pipe and top part of the mesh. Then swept palm over the algae while rinsing it. I’ll keep doing this for some time and we’ll see.
    Turbo likes this.
  11. Turbo

    Turbo Does not really look like Johnny Carson Staff Member Site Owner Multiple Units! Customer

    Keep us posted
  12. trivodi

    trivodi Member

    I would clean that with my hand only, no scrubbing every few days or daily if you have to. I know that stuff is like tiny dusty particles for a lack of better explanation.

    It looks like you are getting some actual hair algae on that last picture.

    You can try running it one sided for 10, 12 hours a day and once it's going add the other side but don't over clean the side that's going. Leave plenty algae on that site for a bit untill both sides are going good.
  13. emil_arvidsson

    emil_arvidsson New Member

    Ok. You mean only light one side until its getting good attached growth, and then in time start lighting the other side aswell ?
  14. Turbo

    Turbo Does not really look like Johnny Carson Staff Member Site Owner Multiple Units! Customer

    Essentially, yes. Right now you are running this:
    so you're running both lights 18 hrs/day. Obviously, if you switch to one-sided, you're effectively cutting that down to 12 hrs/day on each side, max, which is the same as running 12 hrs/day total. This might not be a bad idea.

    One thing I just noticed (didn't catch these before)
    I have never had the need to dose iron, it's a short-term solution as iron is highly reactive in saltwater. It will react quickly with phosphate actually, so this is likely pulling down that level in the water column. I can't recall if it remain available to the algae, but I don't think it does...memory is lapsing on this one.
    Add in this, and you might be starving out the algae by hammering on nitrate and phosphate.

    What I would do is cut your iron dosing in half, and then reduce your NoPoX doing by 25%. Then after 2 weeks, reduce it another 25%. So (just throwing random figures) if you dose 10 mL of NoPoX, cut it down to 7-8, then 2 weeks later cut it down to 5. That is if you start to notice an uptick in growth on the screen. The idea here is that you want to get the algae scrubber taking the place of the nutrient absorption instead of the NoPoX.

    Leave the iron dosing at half of what you do now until the scrubber really gets going and you have reduced NoPoX dosing to 50% or less, then start knocking iron dosing back as well.

    Also keep an eye on phosphate levels when you are doing this to ensure they don't start going wild - that's what does in corals, instability of phosphate.
  15. emil_arvidsson

    emil_arvidsson New Member

    I’m doing ICP laboratory testing regularly, and iron is never traceable. This is during daily dosing. They actually recommend dosing iron to achieve natural sea water params. But sure, I could try stopping the iron doses for a couple of weeks and see how the scrubber reacts.

    When it comes to NO/PO it’s steadily available at NO 3-5 and PO 0,03-0,06 even if I’m dosing nopox. My plan has always been to gradually reduce the carbon source, once the algae starts affecting these parameters.

    So do you think the algae would grow more/better with bigger numbers of NO/PO ?
    Does it work like that I wonder, that you get noticeably more growth at, let’s say NO 10-20 and PO 0,06 - 0,1 than the lower figures I have today ?
    Sounds logical, and at the same time it doesn’t ;)

    When I ran chaeto, a lot of people claimed that you just have to have no/PO available, the numbers doesn’t matter.
    Your ideas ?

    Emil :)
  16. Turbo

    Turbo Does not really look like Johnny Carson Staff Member Site Owner Multiple Units! Customer

    Here's what I have heard - I say "heard" instead of "know" because I have only the info that customers have given me about their tanks.

    Biopellets don't seem to interfere very much with algae growth.
    Vinegar and Vodka dosing does more aggressively interfere with algae growth (One more than the other, I can't recall which)
    Nopox may fall into the latter category.

    One would think that all forms of carbon dosing are essentially the same...but I can tell you, they don't appear to be that way.
  17. emil_arvidsson

    emil_arvidsson New Member

    Seems pretty logic in a way, since the bacteria would be more concentrated inside a biopelletreactor than dosing your carbon source as a liquid straight out in the water column as in vodka/vinegar etc.

    I’m goin on a trip for a week. I won’t do any changes before that. I’ll keep you posted. Thanks for your input.

    Btw. Do you have any ICP testing service in the states or do you send to European (Triton, ATI, Aquaforest, Fauna Marin) laboratory’s if you need an ICP evaluation ?
  18. Turbo

    Turbo Does not really look like Johnny Carson Staff Member Site Owner Multiple Units! Customer

    Pretty much this ^^, but there is one in the US - Aquarium Water Testing >>> Home
  19. emil_arvidsson

    emil_arvidsson New Member

    The algae mat is now approx 3 mm thick. I made a new slotpipe since i have had problems with uneven waterspread on the screen. The result was much better, but my friend is gonna make one more with an industrial saw. Hopefully that’s gonna be as good as it gets.
  20. trivodi

    trivodi Member

    Sounds like you're getting there. Hope it works out.

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