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So my tank has been up and running for 40 days. Started with 50lbs reef cleaner, 8 lbs of live rock, a piece of raw table shrimp and some ammonia.

I've got two ocellaris clowns, a royal gramma, a sexy shrimp, a cleaner shrimp and a $10 frag of zoas. Despite the run in with mild ich so far, no issues. I've got my diatom bloom and now bright lime green algae is forming that is tough to remove and is the base for coraline if I'm reading this stuff right.

I've been doing weekly water changes for almost a month now of 10 gallons every Monday and testing on those days. I'm consistently at 0 Ammonia, 0 Nitrites, 0 phosphates, 8.2 ph and 5-10 Nitrates. I clean my protein skimmer cup each week and top off almost each day with some RO/DI water.

I know this isn't anything new to anyone here, but am I in store for some kind of "uglies?" or surprise? Everything is healthy, thriving, and water is nice and clean. Seems to good to be true!
 

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So my tank has been up and running for 40 days. Started with 50lbs reef cleaner, 8 lbs of live rock, a piece of raw table shrimp and some ammonia.

I've got two ocellaris clowns, a royal gramma, a sexy shrimp, a cleaner shrimp and a $10 frag of zoas. Despite the run in with mild ich so far, no issues. I've got my diatom bloom and now bright lime green algae is forming that is tough to remove and is the base for coraline if I'm reading this stuff right.

I've been doing weekly water changes for almost a month now of 10 gallons every Monday and testing on those days. I'm consistently at 0 Ammonia, 0 Nitrites, 0 phosphates, 8.2 ph and 5-10 Nitrates. I clean my protein skimmer cup each week and top off almost each day with some RO/DI water.

I know this isn't anything new to anyone here, but am I in store for some kind of "uglies?" or surprise? Everything is healthy, thriving, and water is nice and clean. Seems to good to be true!

Just wait :freak:


jk, it will get to be more work, but it isn't going to be overwhelming unless you let it get that way by slacking on maintenance.

Sounds like you are off to a great start though using RO/DI and keeping up on the chores. And yes, the green is typically the first sign of coralline... then you will start seeing purple, orange, pink, etc.
 

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I have noticed more tanks going thru this absence of the uglies. most of them have something in common. proper husbandry being done on a routine basis. this is my logical thinking on the aspect.

the wonderful members of TRT have shared their great knowledge and research with us and we listened. therefore we now understand how important it is to control nutrient importation and exportation through good husbandry practices. i believe we are not skipping the uglies but rather controlling them instead of letting them control us and our tank. my tank is doing the same thing. i even have that lighter green tough to remove algae on some rocks too but its darkening to a dark green now (i do hope your absolutely right about it being c. algae so i need to do some searching to see what i can read on that). i know i am controlling mine because if i dare let my filtersock get full and start to overflow the algae will start bombarding in like it owns the place. but if i clean it everyday the tank stays pristine! Although clean it seems my tank is on a fine line of enough nutrients for everything and excessive nutrients.

although u have more fish/inverts then me, i def have more coral so its nice to be able to compare with someone that's in the same boat with a totally diff stocking plan.

i have a melarnus fairy wrasse, coral beauty and yellow tang (yes i know and i also took into consideration my future plans and that is to upgrade to a more suitable tank within a year) and for coral i have a torch, a trumpet (both of which were in very poor shape upon getting them, the torch has come back tenfold and the trumpet i just got last weekend and already looks better but not quite 100%), 8 frags of various zoa's, paly's and protopaly's (one 6 head of more exotic zoa's that was priced at 49$ that i got for 10 hehe :) a mushroom, a Kenya tree and a red candy cap montipora coral which is sps and im glad it seems to be improving since i said i didn't even want to try and do sps because of the 'cleanliness of the tank' that's needed :)

i have 3 powerheads circulating. one is on the back side on the ground 400gph, a straight shooting pump, my backside of the tank is bb with sand on the front. the pump keep the back glass clear of detritus. a 650 gph powerhead under my overflow box blowing to the front glass in order to keep the sand clear of detritus and provides lots of flow for my Kenya tree on the other side of the tank. then a massive 1200ish powerhead right next to the 600 gph one that is on a timer set to come on 3x a day for 30 mins spraying the rockwork in an attempt to keep the rocks free of excess detritus. the 600gph and 450gph powerheads along with the 1200 powerhead are all timed to be shut off for 2 hours for a no flow period right before the lights come on. everything seems to love it and im not seeing any accumulating detritus in the display tank anywhere. i wanted to have the 1200 powerhead operate like that to help kick up any settled detritus and to give the fish 3 extra 'feeding times' during the day to utilize detritus as food :). in theory it works but in reality there isn't much extra detritus that gets kicked up to constitute a meal for the fish lol. but man do they get excited when that thing comes on. i watch them going from little speck of detritus in the water column to the next and to the next to see if its edible lol i love it!

i do want to admit though, i started the 2 hours of no flow as an experiment. since i started the no flow curfew i also have only done 1 water change in about 5 weeks now (water change was 3 weeks ago at 30g of water). this is a test to hopefully help cultivate the bacteria that convert nitrates to nitrogen gas inside the liverock. i had them doing their work in my old 55g where i had only a nano powerhead rated at 200gph as my only water flow and it was pointed to the surface providing very little flow into the rockwork. i wanted to get them to return but throughout the months ive had this tank up my nitrates have done nothing but go up in between waterchanges waiting for me to bring them back down via waterchanges. my last test 2 weeks ago revealed 30ppm nitrates and my test last night showed moreso on the 20-30 but i do know it wasn't darker then my last test 2 weeks ago and i have not done a waterchange since 3 weeks ago when my nitrates were 40ppm and i took out 30g.

now with what i just said the words make it seem like i am reducing nitrates BUT if i am it has only just begun happening and its not enough proof to say for sure that i am. the real proof will be if nitrates drop below 20ppm. i say this because im still using tap water (bet you didn't see that coming did ya!) don't yell, i don't want to, i have to. cuz im poor. my tap water from my test last night sits at about 15ppm, 3ppm nitrites and very little to no ammonia. so when everythings converted im thinking my waterchange water will yield 20ppm nitrates and no matter how many water changes i try doing i should never be able to go below 20ppm nitrates unless my tapwater magically does. and hopefully i can afford a ro/di unit soon! i do have the suspicion that the excess nutrients in that tap water is what has my setup on the edge of 'tank is clean and corals are thriving' and 'corals are good but i forgot to wash my filter sock yesterday so today i have to clean up a bunch of algae because my filtersock is overflowing'

and too add some info on my water changes, i do still do them, once a month at 30% or 30g (total system volume is about 100g) for trace element replenishment and to vacuum out my sump. right now im not so worried about doing them each week because although i have a lot of frags, i don't really have anything that has a high element consumption plus the fact that the more new saltwater i add, the more new tap water i add, the more unwanted nutrients from tapwater i add... but when i get to that point, no matter which way my little experiment turns, the plan is to revert back to doing at least 10g per week. or maybe 20g everyother week so i have plenty of time to vacuum out my sump. i think that decision will be based more on the corals element needs rather then how often i need to vacuum the sump, which if i clean the filter sock each day the sump floor doesn't really get dirty at all.

either way the goal is always to keep a well kept tank at all times no matter what experiment i might be doing, and it has been that way since the tank has been up :)

so there is my 'where are 'the uglies' story'

anyone else care to share how performing proper husbandry from day one has improved their tank?
 

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what Phane said. Never change too many things at once because you want to monitor how the reef is affected and too many changes or additions at once make it harder to figure out the problem.

You seem to be taking your time as you should so congrats on things going well.
 
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