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View Full Version : Heavy Feeding/Nitrate Reduction Methods


Hurlock
12/19/2010, 12:02 PM
First let me say that I have a successful 1200 gal SPS Reef and a 550 LPS with a large quantity of non-photo corals and inverts.
I have seen too many reefs where animals are not feed enough, corals washed out or pale and tank is basically to sterile.
I feed my 1200 gal SPS reef 3 times a day and heavy...
I also feed the 550 LPS moderate to heavy and I am going to increase the food source with more Reef Nutrition products for the non-photo inverts and corals
I am a scuba diver and have done many trips to the South Pacific.
One of my favorite dive trips was to Lembeh straits,Indo.They call this muck diving for a reason.The bacteria levels in the water are extremely high at times and there is a lot of trash on the bottom of the sea floor. Many of our dive group got sick from bacteria in the water.
This area has some of the most beautiful corals and animals I have every seen. I saw a large blue tort coral,in 5 feet of water 20 yards from shore where kids were playing.Their "outhouse" was on the shore next to them.
I also witnessed our dive boat (120 ft long) dumping its holding tank less then 200 feet off shore where kids were playing in the water. Raw sewerage from homes on the shore dump straight into this narrow strait. All this is food source for the unusual animals and corals that are in this area......
But, what happens next is severe tidal change currents basically washing the waist out of the strait to sea. This happens twice a day.
The sea floor (not very deep)is volcanic matter that is like a big sponge. You can push on it and it is matted like a giant web.
My point is heavy food source....then get rid of it as quickly as you can thru nitrate reduction methods.The ocean does it naturally at Lembeh..
I try to run my reefs the same way.
SPS (1200 ga) has great color. I dose prodibio every 10 days,21ml of vodka daily, and two large skimmers.Carbon and GFO changed every 2-3 weeks. I always use filter bags to filter return water thru sump.
I have never had hair algae,or any real cyno outbreaks. Tank has been running a little over 2 years. Can check it on YouTube site.
550 LPS has been up for 10 years. Converted from SPS to LPS system the last couple of years.Vodka dosing 9ml daily.Carbon/GFO change every 3 weeks,large 2 Beckett MRC skimmer on this tank.Because I am going to start feeding more Reef Nutrition products I just started Bio Pellet reactor with 1/2 the pellets recommended (I still don't think there is exact science to determine how much to use of the Bio pellet media)
The 550 LPS system has no phosphate but some minimum Nitrate reading. I do not want to get it to Zero but am starting the Bio Pellets to help compensate for additional feedings.
Corals/reef animals have to be feed I believe.My reef success has been in getting rid of that waste as quickly as possible
I do 10-15 percent water change monthly and one day every 10 days I feed nothing.
Steve Hurlock, Evergreen, Colorado

HighlandReefer
12/19/2010, 01:03 PM
Because I am going to start feeding more Reef Nutrition products I just started Bio Pellet reactor with 1/2 the pellets recommended (I still don't think there is exact science to determine how much to use of the Bio pellet media)

I agree that there does not seem to be good recommendations for using the biopellets in different systems. ;)

It will be interesting to see if you suffer any bacterial blooms from dosing the biopellets which seems to be a common problem for many hobbyists using them. ;)

JGYEAR
12/19/2010, 02:47 PM
What brand of Biopellets did you start using. I just started my 240 gal mixed reef on the same half dose of the Bulk Reef Supply Biopellets. My goal is the same as yours to start feeding heavier.

GreshamH
12/22/2010, 03:00 PM
Nice seeing you post here Steve. So you're looking to get more feed into your 1,200 gallon tank?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sncfi4hgnM0
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zh6Cz_H8Uhg
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mz15R0gVMPA

snorvich
12/22/2010, 03:23 PM
Inane post deleted

And the value of your post is what?

snorvich
12/22/2010, 03:25 PM
Nice seeing you post here Steve. So you're looking to get more feed into your 1,200 gallon tank?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sncfi4hgnM0
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zh6Cz_H8Uhg
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mz15R0gVMPA

Yes, Steve, welcome to reef central. I too am a diver (about 3000 dives, mostly in the south pacific) and spent a lot of time under water in the straits. Your contributions are welcome!

bertoni
12/22/2010, 03:27 PM
Okay, let's keep the conversation civil.

steveweast
12/22/2010, 06:53 PM
Steve,

We have a similar problem.....except that I run a 400 gal coldwater system that will go from 0 to 100 ppm NO3 in a month from the HUGE feedings. The multiple per day automated feedings of the Reef Nutrition food line plus manual additions have enabled me to keep a wide variety of NP critters.....but, the price is a NO3 issue.

I tried running 12 liters of the biopellets for 8 months.....it didn't even make a dent in my nitrate levels.... probably due to the 55 F temp. I finally employed a Deltec nitrate filter which is automatically fed vodka via a dosing pump. It takes 50ml/day....but, NO3 is now always below 2ppm. I like the idea....and hands off ease..... of the biopellets, but, it was a bust for me (again, probably from the 55 F temp).



Gresh....You've got mail.

Hurlock
12/22/2010, 09:46 PM
Gresh, Steve Thanks as you both know having been here I do like to experiment with some new ideas will try them as long as I can observe my tanks on a daily basis. I have a large Nitrate reactor from aquamedic that I have never hooked-up. Did not need it but that may be something I look it if Bio-pellets do not do the job. I have three large Chili corals that I have had for about 4 years,and have seen them out somewhat when I get -up that early. I also have 8 different Goni species in that tank. Got-up at 4 this morning ..put flashlite on the tank and the Chili's were out larger then I have ever seen them.Goni's doing great. I have had some since 2001. I had just put oyster feast and plankton in that night around 11. I am starting to decrease the vodka a little . Do you thing as the Bio-pellets seed I should continue to cut back vodka dosing a little?

apt220
12/23/2010, 08:48 AM
Thanks for the post. I recently started my all SPS 100g and it probably falls under the "sterile" tank category with pale acros that are barely growing (montis are growing like weeds though). No algae problems (except coraline). I want to feed heavy for coral growth and color but I absolutely hate algae problems. I've been there and done that with previous tanks dealing with cyano and dinos. It is a shame how many people out there post beautiful pics of corals but you notice cyano or other nuisance algae problems in the background. It's just sad. But anyway I enjoyed reading your thoughts/experiences. Unfortunately quick nutrient export, especially large amounts, is easier said than done and achieving that perfect import/export balance is tricky and time consuming. I've been fighting it, but I see myself carbon dosing in the near future (probably zeovit).

But anyway, consider me "subscribed". I know this is not a new topic but it is always good to hear other people's thoughts and experiences with heavy nutrient export.

steveweast
12/23/2010, 08:57 AM
Steve,

You can certainly give the biopellets a chance. There's no doubt that they work.....the real question will be if they work with the amount of food that you want to feed. They didn't in my case (but, temp played a factor too). There's no question that a Nitrate filter will work for you regardless of how much you want to feed....but, the biopellets are less work.....so, I'd go that way until it's proven that it can't handle your needs. I would continue the Vodka dosing for now.....and cut back on it as the biopellets mature. It will be a balancing act for awhile (if the biopellets can handle your food load).