Greetings!

Shkuey

Blue Ring
Registered
Joined
Feb 2, 2009
Messages
47
Hi again everyone,

Just checking in, things are progressing slowly. I didnt think there was enough flow so I added a "koralia 4" underwater fan thing to get the water moving around more. This had two unanticipated effects: the nitrates spiked up to 20 ppm (from 2-3) very quickly and the water took on a greenish color. My assumption was the rocks had gunk on them that wasnt coming off without a current and now I basically knocked it all off into the water. Corrective action has been a 5 gallon daily water change, and this is lowering the nitrates slowly but it is not helping the green water.

Googling for green water it turns out the problem may be sunlight, though my tank is only slightly green and not absolutely disgusting as many of the pictures in that google search, I'm considering a UV sanitizer since I really can't move the tank anywhere that doesnt get some sunlight. Has anybody used one of these? are they effective?

Thanks again,
Mike
 

DWhatley

Kraken
Staff member
Moderator
Joined
Sep 4, 2006
Messages
21,020
Sunlight will encourage algae blooms :hmm: for sure but a UV won't help with that much if at all. There is some debate on the use of UV with an octopus tank but the negatives are circumstantial.

Are you using any form of carbon filtration? If so change it out if not, add it. If you have a sump and can use a filter stock at the drain pipe, I have found putting a bag of carbon directly into the sock provides an easy way to force the water through carbon and to clean or change it every week. It will keep the water clear but you will likely need to clean the tank sides weekly to minimize the algae, even after you have clear water. Reducing your lighting time (you can turn it off if there is nothing that needs light in the tank, the octopus does not need anything more than ambient. You may want to consider setting your timer for only a few hours in the evening for viewing and leave off during the day) will help the most in retarding the algae growth.

To get your nitrates down (this is a separate issue from the green), double your water changes and be sure you heavily stir your bottom substrate and blow off your rocks with a turkey baster. There is a very inexpensive siphon (clear tube with blue bulb) that has recently become widely available that has a rigid wand on the intake side. I find this very helpful for stirring the bottom substrate and targeting the "smoke" that comes up.
 

Shkuey

Blue Ring
Registered
Joined
Feb 2, 2009
Messages
47
Thanks for the reply Whatley, good stuff there.

I do not have any carbon filtration. Will any cut to fit carbon filter pad be ok to put into the sump somewhere that will force all the water through it? That's a quick and easy fix.

I think just closing the blinds when I'm not in the room will solve 90% of the ongoing problem... for some reason sunlight never jumped out at me as an issue doing the research so it basically has direct sunlight all day. That'll be corrected this evening when I get home.

Since there isnt anything in there but live rock, is there any reason I shouldn't just do a massive (70-80%) water change to get the green shit out?
 

DWhatley

Kraken
Staff member
Moderator
Joined
Sep 4, 2006
Messages
21,020
You will still need to run carbon but there is no reason not to do a major water change to kick start the clean-up. Heavily stir your bottom substrate FIRST. You can use your koralia to do this and blow on the LR as well if you have it positioned to easily move it about :tongue:.

The filter pads do not work as well as a bag of carbon but it might help (I only use the pads on my picos). If you can arrange a filter sock into your return you will find the results very benificial (I have McGuivered them in all of mine now).
 

Shkuey

Blue Ring
Registered
Joined
Feb 2, 2009
Messages
47
So I want the sock on the return? It would seem easier to rig it to strain the water as it comes into the sump than to strain the water coming back out.
 

DWhatley

Kraken
Staff member
Moderator
Joined
Sep 4, 2006
Messages
21,020
Sorry for the confusion, I did not mean the return to the tank but the input to the sump. If you have one of the commercial sumps with the hose attached to a housing, there is usually a plate of some sort to defuse the water. For my tanks with this arrangement, I have cut out a hole large enough to fit a filter sock without the sock collar passing through (you can buy drill bits for this or make it look ugly and cut out the easier shape of a square - it won't be seen). If you are concerned about cutting the defuser, then you might look for the plastic peg board that can be found with some extensive looking at some home DIY stores (like Lowes or Home Depot - not sure which but I found some at one) OR you can get a piece egg crate - easiest method - and cut it to fit then snap out your hole (I found that at the DIY stores as well sold as suspended ceiling light covers. Finding it for a different application might yield a better price though).

In a sump without the hooded cover, there are two different brackets that you can buy (the one from Drs Foster and Smith is different from the only other one I have seen) at most other fish supply stores, to hold the sock and the drain hose slides into either holder. I use both styles of holders. If there is a concern about splashing, the style from Drs. Foster and Smith is safer as the input tube goes well into the sock. If splashing is not a concern, the other style is easier to change out because the input tube does not have to be removed to do the change and there is less risk of the hose popping out of the holder since it remains undisturbed during filter changes (yes, these comments are from experienced minor catastrophes :oops:)

I use a 4" sock (and the only size I have seen that has a bracket) on all but the 140 (that one has an 8" using the method one above). Be sure you buy at least one (I keep a total of three per tank) extra sock if you buy the bracket (usually, but not always - comes with a sock but Amazon link does not include a sock at all). The polyweld hold up better but the 200 micron felt seems to get dirtier. Don't waste your money on poly socks that are only sewn, they come apart quickly, the felt ones aren't welded but are bound stitched and have not separated.

The socks clean with a lot of rinsing. Soaking them inside out between water changes is helpful. I use clorox in a little washing machine bucket that works well but just an old salt bucket and soaking works. The reason I recommend three socks per tank is pure laziness. My socks soak for a week, the following week I soak them in some declor while I am changing water and put them up to dry when the next batch has been collected. You can manage with two if money is tight but with the cost of shipping, I would recommend the spending the extra on the front end.
 

Shkuey

Blue Ring
Registered
Joined
Feb 2, 2009
Messages
47
Thanks Whatley, this is quite helpful. I think the problem I'm going to have is finding a way to rig it in there. I've got one of those all-in-one sumps so I'll have to cut something somewhere... I'm going to see if the local store has any of these so I can actually see one before I buy it, which will help me visualize it a bit better.

On a related note, closing the blinds along with the water changes has already had a noticeable effect on the green, which is quickly subsiding.
 
Joined
Dec 4, 2008
Messages
505
I saw that you were looking for a faster way to mature your tank. I had the same problem I wanted my tank to mature and I wanted it right away. I did some researching and found a nice solution I used. I is called API Stress Zyme. It worked awesome. It cut a month from the three month thing and it keeps your bio-filter working strong.

Hope that helped
 

Jean

Colossal Squid
Registered
Joined
Nov 19, 2002
Messages
4,218
Personally I'd be cautious about adding any chemical such as stress zyme to a tank to speed up the cycle (glad it worked for you bluespot) IMHO there is no substitute for patience! I work in a public aquarium so there is a financial incentive to get tanks up and running fast but in our experience shortcuts frequently turn into disasters! We have one tank down now because it sprung a leak we don't anticipate it being back online for another month, it's been off line for month and a half now (and these are tanks that are 78 years old and plumbed into a fully open to the sea system!).

Just my :twocents:

J
 

Top