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Discussion Starter #1
I have 4 monti frags - 3 are caps and 1 is a digitata. The original corals are bright green and dark red, but over the course of a few weeks, all my frags have turned to an ugly brown. The two oldest frags are starting to encrust their bases, all of the frags regularly have all of their polyps extended. I have a 30 gal tank with VHO lighting. The frags are all in the upper third of the tank near the surface. Negative on the nitrates and calcium is about 500. I drip kalk and the salinity stays pretty close to 1.026. I have a few mushrooms and zoas, xenia, colt coral, and anthelia frags in the tank. No fish. I run carbon in the sump continuously. Anybody have any thoughts on why they all turned brown? Is it temporary? Too much/little light?
 

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Tang Lover
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Very hard question to answer w/out a lot more info, but USUAL suspects are either water that is higher than ideal, in nutrients, and insufficient lighting.

So you say you have VHO's...what wattage? What's your photoperiod?

As far as nutrients...that doesn't always equate to nitrates. Can you tell us about your tank husbandry? (water changes? how often? what's your substrate? substrate maintenance? skimmer? feeding habits? etc) And also, what are you Alk, Ca, and Magnesium (if possible) levels?

There's a few similar threads in the SPS forum. Might want to look through those, and see if any relate to the problem you're seeing.

http://thereeftank.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?s=&daysprune=&f=178

Get back to us with some more info, and we'll see if we can help you out!!
 

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Registered
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Yes! SPS corals sometimes turn brown when Bag shipped for long periods of time becuase the water in the bag is dark, and there is no circulation in the water, temperature is unstable, etc. Many Factors!
 

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Something else to consider is phosphates and basic shock. If they are new, they may have come from a system that had a drastic difference in lighting. VHO's are not regarded as the optimum set up for SPS all though Montis are some what more forgiving than other SPS. My first thought was the lighting.

Robert
 

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Discussion Starter #6
The tank is lit with 180 watts of VHO with a photoperiod of 10 hours, there is no appreciable algae growth on the rocks, and the glass stays clean for about 3 days before I run the mag float over it. The total capacity of the system is about 45 gallons, it's skimmed with a coralife super skimmer rated for 65 gallons and it pulls out plenty of dark skimate. I clean the skimmer weekly and blow off detritus every 3 days or so. The topoff water is ro/di. I have no fish and have not added any food to the tank for the past 3 weeks. I have a deep sand bed which I also blow off with the rocks to keep detritus to a minimum (or at least I try to). The return pump is a mag 7 and I have a maxijet for extra flow in the upper half of the tank (mostly directed towards the montis). I do a water change about once a month - about 7 gallons.

The montis came from systems lit with MH lamps. The two new frags came from the LFS. AT the LFS they had a frag of the red monti in a nanoreef lit with PC lamps and it was a gorgeous deep red and growing nicely - the same color as in the display tank lit with MHs.
 

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The Muddy Mod
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I've had a couple corals turn brown, and when I raised them up closer to the MH's they've come back to original color.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Casey said:
How old are your bulbs?
approximately 3 months - I have one actinic blue, one 50/50, one 10K. Should I go up to 4 bulbs for more light? The tank is pretty shallow (18 inches), I don't want to burn my mushrooms and zoas.
 

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Yes go up to 4 bulbs you need more light to get the colors back Your par is low.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Wiskey said:
How close to the surface of the water are your VHO bulbs?

How long have you had the montis?

Thanks,
Whiskey
The lights are about 3-4 inches off the surface of the water. I've had 2 montis for 2 months (they are encrusting their bases nicely) and 2 frags for about 1 month. All have turned a light brown color. All have their polyps extended.
 

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hng said:
The lights are about 3-4 inches off the surface of the water. I've had 2 montis for 2 months (they are encrusting their bases nicely) and 2 frags for about 1 month. All have turned a light brown color. All have their polyps extended.
More light More light.:thumbup:
 

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Discussion Starter #15
OOPS, I messed up, I have 270 watts of VHO lighting not 180. Does that make a diff, or still more light is needed?
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Well, I just looked at a thread started by whiskey that asked about some sps turning a light brown/tan color and they concluded that the corals were getting too much light! Well, my frags are turning a very light tan color as well - not a dark brown. Is it possible that I'm getting too much light on my frags. They are located just under the surface of the water under the VHO lamps.

I don't mind adding another VHO bulb to the hood, but I want to make sure I'm doing the right thing for my coral buddies.
 

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Tang Lover
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I think too MUCH light would result in bleaching, NOT an overabundance of zooxanthella (which is what makes corals turn brown).

But I could be wrong.
 
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