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Thread: A Macro Algae Specific Saltwater Tank

  1. #11
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    just outside of Ottawa, Ontario
    Posts
    51
    Quote Originally Posted by WarEagleNR88 View Post
    Tom, thanks! Question for you if I may, what kind of Fe dosing schedule do you use for your macro algae tanks?

    I'm considering purchasing "Kent Marine Super Chelated Iron Supplement with Manganese" through a local vendor and am wondering its performance with regards to macroalgaes. I've read through Randy Holmes-Farley's Fe article and realize that with macros, I should definitely dose Fe. The only Fe supplement source I currently have is Planted CSM+B and that includes chelated Copper at 1% which is a big no no for reef application--and I plan on having invertebrates in the tank.
    Hi,

    I have a 125g tank that contains macroalgae exclusively. At present, I have Chaetamorpha, Chondrus, and Ulva. They don't seem too picky for lighting, and I generally triple the dosage for Kent Iodine, Iron (with K20), and Calcium (regular dosage). Because I keep my tank cool (about 12-14*C), the microalgae is not a problem, despite the long photoperiods (17 hours), and nutrient rich soup I've got going.

    Circulation definitely seems to be a key player for rich looking algae, especially the Chondrus crispus. Without vigorous water flow, the ends of the fronds tend to get 'dirty' and aren't as robust as the ones in a good current.

    The Chaetamorpha seem to do well, regardless of anything! It can be annoying in that it floats freely and often snags my Chondrus, or becomes caught in the Ulva.

    In the coming weeks I should be posting some photos once I redecorate the tank, to make it more 'camera friendly'

    Cheers,

    Rich
    Richard Santink
    Mississippi Mills, ON Canada

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    125g macroalgae-only tank
    Non-CO2
    2 x 30W 18K lighting
    overdosin' Fe & I

    Chondrus crispus
    Chaetomorpha spp.
    Palmaria palmata

  2. #12
    The main focus I did was a lot of pruning and keeping these weeds at bay.
    The same is true for FW Plants but this is a bit different, much more picking things out.

    Given my algal background, this is not an issue for myself.
    FW plant folks might be able to make the jump better perhaps.
    Not sure.

    Circulation is certainly a big issue and for FW plants as well.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr

  3. #13
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Phoenix, Arizona
    Posts
    7
    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Barr View Post
    Dosing EI is tougher unless you plan on doing a lot of water changes with Marine water.

    EI is not something you want to use verbatum off the EI article, the concept yes, not the dosings.

    I dose the Kent stuff at 5mls per 80 liters 2-3x a week.
    I dose KNO3 at about 1/8 teaspoon for this same volume 2x a week.
    A "speck" of PO4 after things have grown in 1x week. About 0.2ppm.
    I do 70% water changes weekly, sometimes I slack.

    I found that CO2 did not really help the macro's.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
    Tom, do you dose dry KNO3 of 1/8 tsp or a solution of it? I am dosing a solution of KNO3. The solution I am using is 1T of KNO3 in 500mL of RODI water. My plan is to dose 2 tsp per week.

    As far as the EI goes, does it not workt he same in a marine aquarium? Please go into some detail if so. My idea was to incorporate larger water changes (approaching 50%) since it is a 10 gallon aquarium, but I may change this depending on how things are going and how things look. I say "how things look" because I'm thinking I should fuel the algae growth instead of using water changes to reset my parameters. But what is the best way to do that? And am I all wrong with my approach to growing macros? I'm looking for the best growth from them and am trying to fuel the fire--so to speak. Do you have/know of any literature or a website that outlines the parts of macroalgae and goes into good detail? I find it hard to know what to do to make these things flourish.

    The cycle is nearing full completion--for the time being. My water tested 0 NH3/4 and 0 NO2 today. Again I haven't testing nitrates as I feel the alage will utilize nitrates. Diatoms have fully bloomed and the tank is good IMO, even with them taking over the place. I have added reef janitors (hermits, snails, and 1 emerald crab) and am looking for my first fish to add. I'm still searching for more algae, particularly red algae and have let my LFS's know I'm looking for interesting and hard to find macros and inverts. Currently in order of size, I have 5 large halimeda plants, ~5 species of caulerpa, chaetomorpha, and a small stem of what appears to be some type of botryocladia. Algae is even sprouting out of the rock and is appearing in all shapes and sizes that I'm not yet able to identify. Two that I think I can identify are a type of codium and small udotea sprouts growing from the rock. Oh and I can't forget the coralline and the diatoms that are growing as well.

    Thanks for your help. I will try to post a picture very soon.

  4. #14
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Phoenix, Arizona
    Posts
    7
    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Barr View Post
    The main focus I did was a lot of pruning and keeping these weeds at bay.
    The same is true for FW Plants but this is a bit different, much more picking things out.

    Given my algal background, this is not an issue for myself.
    FW plant folks might be able to make the jump better perhaps.
    Not sure.

    Circulation is certainly a big issue and for FW plants as well.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
    Can you detail your "picking things out" Are these older plants? Or are they to clear the vertical for the algaes that are being shaded?

    Does algae benefit from pruning like FW stem plants do? If you trim FW stem plants, they typically will "fill-out" and become slightly bushier over time.

    Also, currently I run the 200gph Penguin filter with the HOB wheel installed. Should I add a small powerhead to the tank? I have a MaxiJet 600 on hand that I can easily add.

    Hmm, sorry for all the ?s, I'm very curious.

  5. #15
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Silver Creek Ny (its just south of buffalo)
    Posts
    36
    I setup a tank just like that a ten gallon stock light and a skilter . Three chunks of nice live rock . for fish i had 2 clowns thats it and a few snails and some blue leg hermits . the tank got direct sunlight for about 4 hours a day . Some nice red macro algae started growing out of the rocks at a nice rate this was one of my best looking tanks and almost no maint. I use to pick the algae out of this tank and throw it im my 75 reef and my tangs loved it.
    Eclipse system 12
    heavily planted
    AH 36w retro kit light 2pm-11pm
    Substrate: Flourite
    Pressurized Co2 with Red Sea 500 reactor
    jbj regulator
    PMDD/EI
    _____________________

    10g shrimp/Snail Only tank
    Flourite Red
    28w corallife aqualight
    Various mosses
    whisper 20 w/ sponge pre-filter.
    Feeding HBH Lobster crab bites and Algae Wafers.
    No Co2 and light fertilization

  6. #16
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Phoenix, Arizona
    Posts
    7
    Here's what it looked like last Tuesday. It looks even more grown up now and it continues to grow like crazy. There are a lot of animals in there. Ask questions if you've got them.

    How do I trim Caulerpa without it nuking the tank, Mr. Barr? I pulled some apart last week and it started oozing in the water. Should I run carbon if I do trim it?


  7. #17
    Grape is tougher, I trim it, it'll leak for awhile, but should seal up.
    You can run a skilter or skimmer/AC etc.

    Do not dose then!!

    When you prune, clean etc, do that large massive water change, just like after a good pruning with a FW tank!!!

    Be judicious to the design layout, Grape grows like mad, I got rid of it.
    Pesky weed. Dictyota was worse, but......I could not get rid of it entirely, the Grape I could.

    I'd dose 1/16th 2-3x a week for this tank, same for traces, 3mls or so.
    Maybe a tiny speck of PO4 1 day before water change and then maybe 3 days after.

    diatom bloom: too much PO4.

    Diatoms are the worst general algae issues you will get from over dosing.
    Herbivores, shrimps etc are very useful.

    Shrimps are my personal favs for such tanks, SeaHorses are also nice additions.

    Blood shrimp, Clowns, cleaners etc.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr

  8. #18

    How is that tank doing?

    WarEagleNR88,

    How has the 10 gallon macroalgae tank worked out since your last photo was posted? I have long been considering dipping my feet (so to speak) into a marine tank and want my first foray to be a planted one. I'm very curious to see how things have worked out for you.

    -Jason

  9. #19
    tom what is the kent stuff? and would tmg work?
    any potassium needed?

    good source of halophile?

  10. #20
    This stuff?

    I use it every other day and also dose CaNO3 to keep ~2-5ppm nitrate. I wouldn't worry about K or other elements bottoming out with a good water change schedule.

    I haven't tried any other source for Fe yet but when I get low on the Kent mix I might look around for other options, although the Kent mix is not too expensive and lasts a long time. My caulerpa tends to lose its deep green color if I skimp on the macros.

    By the way, I have a 20g tank stuffed with various caulerpas and some gracilaria. I'm about to throw it out because I've nowhere to take it. Ley me know if you want any.

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