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SeanS

My acros are dying:(

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STNing that is. Monti Setosa doesn't look very good either.

 

Current levels have been stable for a couple weeks and look good: alk 9, cal 425, mag 1500ish, po4 .04, no3 1ppm.

However, my tank has overheated a number of times recently, nitrates bounced between 8ppm and 0 a couple weeks ago (carbon dosing can be a bit unpredictable it seems) and I fragged a bunch of zoas in tank.

 

So the questions: would a string of small stresses cause stn to start days after the fact? Or should I be looking for a bigger culprit?

 

And the follow up question, is there anything I can do, or is the standard response (water changes, charcoal, polyfilter, monitoring levels) the best I can do at this point?

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Reduce your carbon dosing, and let your nitrates go back up to 8. I have had similar issues when carbon dosing. At 1 ppm nitrates my acros died too.

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Reduce your carbon dosing, and let your nitrates go back up to 8. I have had similar issues when carbon dosing. At 1 ppm nitrates my acros died too.

Thanks, I'll try raising them and see what happens.

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I would try dipping some of them and see if any pests you cant see come off.

If Lexinverts suggestion isn't showing any improvement by the next time I get to my tank, I will certainly try this too. Thanks.

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Ok, I turned off the skimmer and have been feeding heavily. It is still a bit early to tell, but I think PE and color is improved. With any luck, death will be contained to 2 torts.

Come on corals!

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Just keep in mind that it may take up to a month to see a real change....death/injuries can happen quick, recovery is slow. Kinda like humans usually.

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Just keep in mind that it may take up to a month to see a real change....death/injuries can happen quick, recovery is slow. Kinda like humans usually.

I'll keep that in mind. Right now I'm just looking for the tissue damage to stop. A couple months of crummy looking corals is fine with me, as long as I'm not actively pulling skeletons from the tank.

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Update time:

Today is day 4 of double feeding with no skimmer, and some results are in. 

To Lexinverts, next time I bump into you at Moloko, I owe you a beer:)

 

My M. Setosa no longer looks spotty, and signs of tissue loss around the base have disappeared. Joe the Coral has mostly recovered from slight tissue loss on the tips. Valida suffered 25% tissue loss, now is starting to show PE. I think it will recover. Awesome bronze milli from C&C suffered 30% tissue loss, STN has slowed or stopped. I hope it will recover. Blue Tort is certainly a goner, Cali Tort has very little hope left. Green Slimer suffered 5% tissue loss, I think it will be fine soon. Mandinga's mystery milli has less than optimal PE, but is the nicest color it has ever been. Figures, right? My zoas look absolutely phenomenal...

 

Oh yeah, and nitrates have dropped to 0. Not a single hint of color in the vial. I'm not sure quite what is going on yet, but it is clear that I am adding nutrients and they are being consumed. 

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Have you backed off the carbon dosing? I would do that too. Turning off the skimmer isn't optimal (especially at night), because it aerates your water as well skimming.

Glad to hear things are looking up!

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Good point on the skimmer. It's absence doesn't seem to have bothered anything yet, so I think I will risk it for a couple more days.

 

I have dropped vinegar from the 3ml I was running when the nitrates started plummeting, first down to 1ml and now down to 1ml every other day.

 

I'm worried that if I drop it further I might starve the bacteria in the tank. Though I suppose if nitrates don't rise soon, I may do just that.

 

My Cali Tort has a single polyp left, and it is starting to extend. The prognosis isn't good, but this is the same coral that I blew nearly all the tissue off of only 6 months ago. If it makes it, I nominate it for toughest frag.

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Good point on the skimmer. It's absence doesn't seem to have bothered anything yet, so I think I will risk it for a couple more days.

 

I have dropped vinegar from the 3ml I was running when the nitrates started plummeting, first down to 1ml and now down to 1ml every other day.

 

I'm worried that if I drop it further I might starve the bacteria in the tank. Though I suppose if nitrates don't rise soon, I may do just that.

 

My Cali Tort has a single polyp left, and it is starting to extend. The prognosis isn't good, but this is the same coral that I blew nearly all the tissue off of only 6 months ago. If it makes it, I nominate it for toughest frag.

 

Just dilute your vinegar in RO water so that you don't have to dose such small volumes every other day. (I am using Red Sea NOPOx, and I have it diluted 9:1 in RO water, so I can add it over the course of the day in several small doses, rather than in a single dose.)

 

Good luck saving that Cali tort!

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Just dilute your vinegar in RO water so that you don't have to dose such small volumes every other day. (I am using Red Sea NOPOx, and I have it diluted 9:1 in RO water, so I can add it over the course of the day in several small doses, rather than in a single dose.)

 

Good luck saving that Cali tort!

Thanks again, dilution makes a ton of sense.

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Sigh. Not out of the woods yet. PE is back down, slight tissue loss evident. It appears that with diminished growth comes less alk demand, and I wasn't perhaps monitoring it quite well enough...

NO3 is at .5, PO4 .04, Alk 11 dkh, normally at 9... 

Let's get this alk down a bit and see if it helps:(

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What kind of carbon are you using? Yeah I would ditch the vinegar for now too.

 

You said you had some temp swings...was this due to a heater, sensor, or just summertime temps? What have you done to alleviate the swings?

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What kind of carbon are you using? Yeah I would ditch the vinegar for now too.

 

You said you had some temp swings...was this due to a heater, sensor, or just summertime temps? What have you done to alleviate the swings?

I'm just using a tiny bit of vinegar, 1ml every other day diluted to 1/3 strength. At this point it is astonishing that it is doing anything, but I have had some weird experiences with bacterial cultures behaving oddly in this tank before.

 

I can shut it off if nitrates don't go up over the weekend, next time I see the tank is Monday.

 

The heat spikes were just from the hot summer weather. Specifically on a nice day, ac gets turned off to open the windows, then left off over the weekend... Oh the perils of an oft unsupervised tank...

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I did some math and set the doser so the alk should drop a full point by Monday. It was already down to 10 post water change, so with any luck this might just work out.

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Coralpocolypse continues. Acros are fading fast, montis and birdsnest are hurting:( Zoas and LPS look amazing right now, so at least there is that:(

 

Current tank conditions:

Temp 80, Alk 9, Cal 510 (whoops!), No3 4ppm, PO4 .04. 

Skimmer is on, carbon dosing is off, pumps are clean...

 

I just dunno anymore. At this point my SPS doesn't have much fight left, and I am just feeling defeated. 

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Coralpocolypse continues. Acros are fading fast, montis and birdsnest are hurting:( Zoas and LPS look amazing right now, so at least there is that:(

 

Current tank conditions:

Temp 80, Alk 9, Cal 510 (whoops!), No3 4ppm, PO4 .04. 

Skimmer is on, carbon dosing is off, pumps are clean...

 

I just dunno anymore. At this point my SPS doesn't have much fight left, and I am just feeling defeated. 

Try to get your Alk at 8 or slightly below. Are you getting necrosis at the tips of your Acros?

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I wouldn't touch anything. All your parameters are within acceptable ranges. The issues you're having are likely due to the rapid changes your tank has gone through. The temp drop probably kicked things off and chasing alk around is what likely did the most damage. If you can keep alk stable at 9, then leave it. I've had my alk go up and down over time and didn't lose anything from it as long as I didn't overreact and change it too rapidly.

 

Having your cal up high like that isn't an issue, just back it off a bit and watch it.

 

Just out of curiosity, what salt are you using and what water changes have you done?

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Ok, some other possibly relevant info:

 

The tank is 30 gallon total. I do a 4-5 gallon water change every two weeks with Kent Marine.

At one point many months ago, I got way behind on the water changes, and all my SPS were dying in a similar fashion until I got them a couple big water changes and starting sticking with the schedule. At that time though, my LPS was looking a bit rough, now they look happier than ever.

 

I did acquire an RO/DI recently. TDS was reading 0, so I didn't switch any filters. I'm pretty sure the DI is shot right now...

 

I also opened a new box of salt, and this one has been leaving quite a bit of sediment during mix up. I haven't tested the params of the new water, but they haven't been throwing off my tank.

 

Light is 250w Pheonix 14k. About a year old. Everything I've read says it should be good for 2.

 

Necrosis is at both the tips and base. Just the tips for Joe the Coral, just the base for the birdsnest. Make of that what you will.

 

I did a water change yesterday, and the conditions today are unchanged. At this point, it is hard to tell when it is getting better, but easy to tell when it is getting worse. So, lack of worsening conditions is a win right now.

 

Thanks for all the help guys! I would really like to keep SPS, they are the reason I got into the hobby. Though I am starting to wonder if this should just be a zoa and LPS garden.

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