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Re: Varying algae from hell

> OK, I'm really, really frustrated,  I've been fighting with my heavily
> planted 100 gallon for quite awhile now, and I'm to the point of tearing it
> down and focusing on my reef for awhile.  But, I'm giving it

Before you do, come on by my place.   The offer is still open.  Maybe seeing
something from my setup will ring a bell, and help you find the missing
piece of the puzzle.   Call, or shoot me an email if you don't have my number.
I'm right down the road.

> awhile (normal), then, I dealt with major hair algae issues for 2-3 months.

Clarify:  hair algae or black beard algae?   Hair algae is long green flowing
strands, commonly associated with high iron levels.   BBA is shorter stubble
algae growing around the edges of leaves, etc, and is commonly associated with
excess phosphates.

> outbreak of cyanobacteria blooms, covering everything to the point of not
> being able to see the fish through the coated acrylic.  My next step is to
> dose the tank with antibiotics, as the tank is too infested to straighten

I understand the reason for treating with antibiotics, but it will never
help to solve the problem, since it's not addressing the nutrient problems.

> - -Tank has been up and running since about late September of last year.
> - -100 gallon, with about a 35 gallon sump with wet/dry holding a cubic foot
> of media
> - -320 watts in the form of 2 5' URI full spectrum VHOs (not 50/50 actinics or
> anything else weird.)

That's a lot of light, but so excessive as to cause endless algae woes.

> - -Ammonia, Nitrite, Nitrate and Phosphate all test 0.

Do you dose Nitrate?   I can give you some KNO3.  Keep the nitrate level
up around 5ppm.

> - -pH generally sits about 6.8, although I'm still dialing KH, resulting in
> fluctuations.

> - -All tank water is RO/DI, reconstituted with Kent R/O right (went to RO
> after discovering that Denver city water has a GH of about 20 and is prone
> to phosphate spikes).  Water changes consist of 25-30 gallons weekly.

nasty.   I'm on the other side of town.  Tap water is GH 8, KH 3, someone
locally told me it does contain phosphates, but nothing that good growth can't

> - -Fairly low fish loading, well planted.  Tank is somewhat underfed (1x every
> other day or so, with little food hitting the bottom.)

Well planted has many different meanings.   I've had several people visit me.  
Before seeing my tanks in person, they considered their tanks well planted.  
Afterwards, they changed that to "barely planted".    Lots and lots of 
fast growing plants will make BIG difference.   Again, I've always got
spare clippings.   

> - -Fertilization consists of sort of daily applications of Karl Scholler's
> liquid fertilizer, with very occasional doses on potassium nitrate, as I've
> been suspicious that the tank is nitrate limited.

Not familar with Karl Scholler's liquid fertilizer....   I did VERY well for a 
while with TMG, with additional potassium and KNO3.    Now I'm using Microplex
trace mix, and additional potassium  (KCl) and KNO3.
> wholesale.)  I'm wondering if the drop in lighting may ease my woes.

Well, it won't correct nutrient problems.    Growth (of plants and algae) will
slow down, but if nutrients are still out of whack, algae will continue to win.

Chuck Gadd