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[APD] Re: marine algae

"Thanks. I don't have a bioball filter, and definitly
churn the water a lot. I probably do need to get more
agressive about boosting Ca and Alk. But I'm not sure
where I can cram in more equipment under the tank. Now
if my wife would just let me get a bigger tank..."

More reasons to use the plants/algae that you want vs a big skimmer and large associated pump to drive the thing(and the noise). Refuge's need tending as well.

"What about increasing the lighting wavelength? Right
now I have 10k MH. Tom pointed out that most of the
green algae seems to be at depths that receive 5k-10k
light. I've been thinking about going to 20k when
these bulbs give in, is fighting green algae another
reason to do this, or would it not be a help?"

Well, unless you address the needs of the macros or the assocaited algae in the inverts, you are going to get nuisance algae. You have low Ca/KH, this will cause as much damage as low CO2 and high light in FW planted tanks. Skimmer/Refuge's will not add Ca/KH, you must do this and address the root cause of both more macro and coral/invert growth.

Corals seem to do better with slightly higher nutrient levels that refugiums provide than over skimmed system from everything I've seen. You can remove too much and not have the coral and macro's do well. This is why Caulerpa melts often for many peoople after a peroid of growth. Algae will eat it's self out of house and home and then a smaller noxious species will come in afterwards. Good regular feeding adds enough NO3 in most cases. I've over dosed traces(Fe/Mn etc) and KNO3 to marine systems with no negative effects, PO4 is another matter and more problematic in marine systems(Diatom blooms on the glass). Ca/Alk should always be high though, just like CO2 in plants tanks, you need that basic building block for plants/macro's/corals.

Tom Barr

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