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Croff
06/07/2016, 02:39 PM
Hello,

I started using AF products 7 weeks ago. I have a Red Sea Reefer 170, nitrate was 2-3, phosphate 0,02-0,03 using NOPOX. Since I changed to AF, nitrates climbed to 16 and phosphates to 0,3. I dose Pro Bio S (2 drops daily) and -NP pro ( 4 drops daily). Do you think I should increase even more -NP pro dosing? With my water volume (less than 140 liters) 1-2 drops daily was supposed to be OK. I also added 1 liter of Siporax since I began using AF products.

Thank you

plyle02
06/07/2016, 03:17 PM
Hello Croff,
Can you please list all parameters? Also, please indicate how your skimmer is working. With siporax, it takes 6+ weeks before the biological aspects begin working, so it will take a bit of time. Are you shaking the Pro Bio S before use? I would not increase NP Pro, the system can take time to begin working properly. Please explain how the corals and fish look? Are you using Probiotic Reef Salt, if you are, are you doing regular water changes, and how many gallons? I would only suggest you do 2 drops of each daily. What else is being dosed in the system? Also, you can add phos minus to lower your phosphates. In good time, the siporax will seed and through continued use of Pro Bio S and NP Pro, the levels should fall to proper range. Please look over the system in detail and ensure there are not other contributing husbandry factors being over looked as well. Cheers

Croff
06/08/2016, 09:28 AM
Hello Perry,
My system it's been working since October, and my actual parameters are Ca 405, Kh 7.5, Mg 1230. Skimmer seems Ok, I am using a Deltec 1351, Probiotic Reef Salt (15 liters change every 10 days), Component 1,2,3+ and Coral A,V,B,E. I know that it takes some time for Siporax to begin working, but what seemed odd to me was that for several months and using only NOPOX, nitrates and phosphates were low, and now they have climbed to 16 and 0,3. I have lost three corals, but possibly due to low alkalinity three weeks ago, the rest seem fine. I'll cut NP Pro dosing to two drops as you suggest and wait a little longer to see if Siporax starts working.
Thank you

plyle02
06/08/2016, 11:16 AM
Hey Croff,
Although NOPOX is a C-source based system, I would imagine the ingredients and applications are much different. For now, I would do a larger water change, and continue to do so weekly if possible. For phosphates, I would simply add Phos Minus and Carbon in one reactor, that will help further reduce the nutrients, the increased volume in water changes will also help. Once your siporax seeds, it will likely pull NO3 down pretty low, you can increase the dose of both Pro Bio S and NP Pro to 3 drops each daily, with close observation. The bacteria needs to be established within the tank, obviously on siporax media, but also in the confines of the tank, including live rock and sand. Switching from one system to another, you may find different results, but through continued use, the system will balance. You may see biofilm build on the sand, rocks, glass, and plastics of the tank, this is normal as it begins the process. Please report back and do not hesitate to ask as many questions as you need to, I would love to see you yield the desired results :) Cheers

Croff
06/08/2016, 01:18 PM
I'll do that. Thank you

Croff
06/19/2016, 05:31 AM
Hello again,
Ten more days and no changes... NO3 16 and phosphates 0,3. Dosing 2 drops of Pro Bio S and NP Pro daily. Would it be a good idea to begin using Zeo Mix and Phosphate Minus? I know they are supposed to be used in a reactor, but I don't own one; would them work if used in a bag inside the sump? Also, my Siporax it's been in the sump for 9 weeks, shouldn't it be already working?
Thank you

plyle02
06/19/2016, 06:02 AM
Yes they can be used passive, just take it out of the sump and knead every couple of days to avoid clumping. How does the tank look? Have you tried other test kits too, or brought to LFS to test? Just keep at what you are doing, in time everything will balance.

Croff
06/19/2016, 07:42 AM
Is it better to use them in the same bag or one bag for each? Can they be used together with carbon, as they are used in reactors?
No, I haven't tried with other test kit, but I will. The tank looks fine, but some corals are fading.
Thank you again

plyle02
06/19/2016, 12:59 PM
I would test right away, fading usually implies starvation, which would not agree with a nitrate and phosphate level indicated. I would keep them separate in the mesh bags, but they do work well stacked in fluidized reactors. This method would work best if you can manage it, if not, passive will work. With these systems, observance is far superior than chasing numbers :)

Croff
06/20/2016, 04:21 AM
I'm sorry, but english is not my first language... I didn't mean fading, they are receding. One acanthastrea, one favites, one seriatopora and one caulastrea. Except the caulastrea that never was happy, all were doing fine and growing before changing to Aquaforest. Do you think that could be caused by the increase in nitrate and phosphate? Or maybe something else?

plyle02
07/01/2016, 04:05 PM
Any updates Croff?

Croff
07/12/2016, 12:40 PM
Still the same. I just measured nitrates and they are 16. Also measured nitrates in top off water just to be sure and they are 0. Ca 415, Mg 1240, K 8. Haven't add Zeo Mix nor Phosphate Minus yet but I think I will try again NOPOX while still using Pro Bio S an NP Pro, just to see what happens.

Croff
07/12/2016, 12:48 PM
Some of my corals are still receding and my acanthastrea has almost disappeared. Do you think that with those nitrates I should stop using coral A, V, B, E? Or just the contrary and increase its quantity? I'm now using 1 drop of each every 2 days (my aquarium is 150 liters)

plyle02
07/13/2016, 04:48 AM
Croff, I doubt having 16ppm is the reason for the coral decline. I would continue to use the Pro Bio S, and NP Pro, you could increase it to 2 drops per day, and see if this impacts the NO3. Keep in mind that PO4 needs to be present for them to both drop, so if you are at 0.00, this might be why you cannot limit NO3. Water changes are the best way to lower, so I would advise to do water changes frequently, once the balance is achieved, then you can up the dose on food supplements. Cheers

Croff
07/13/2016, 10:54 AM
PO4 is 0,3. It,s been more or less the same since I started using AF products, just like the NO3 at 16. It also seemed to me that 16 NO3 wasn't that high and the reason for my corals decline, but everything was thriving before I made the change to AF, and I'm not sure what to do... I keep the same maintenance schedule, the same water changes, the same light intensity... Everything is the same except AF.
NO3 16, PO4 0,3 since I started using the products 3 months ago without being able to lower them, even using more quantity than stated (3 drops every day Pro Bio S and NP Pro) As I said, before the change NO3 was 2-3 and PO4 0,02-0,03.
Do you then think it's worth continuing with this schedule for a while, or should I go back to my previous products and see what happens?
Again, thank you for your help and patience. Cheers

Croff
07/13/2016, 10:58 AM
What about coral A, V, B, E? Should I stop dosing them with those nitrates? Or maybe the reason for my coral decline is starvation and I should increase dosage?
Thank you

plyle02
07/13/2016, 05:02 PM
If you have pale corals, but have N&P, then you may want to re-check your tests, typically corals will get darker tissue when nutrients are higher, going pale usually indicates lack of nutrients(food) available for the corals. Is the tank new? Did it start with live or dead rock? How is the skimmer performing? Have you tested K? Thanks, just more details to further assist :) Cheers!

Croff
07/20/2016, 04:30 PM
Corals are not pale, but some of them are disappearing, dying. I began using NOPOX again last week, but still dosing Pro Bio S and NP Pro, and nitrates are now lower, around 12. Tank is from October, never tested K, but tested nitrates with different brands. Also 2 weeks without using A,V, B,E, which I'm not sure is a good idea... Corals seem the same, some dying (acans and plate montipora) and others not thriving but neither dying. My biggest concern now is if I should began using A,V,B,E again or wait until nitrates/phosphates are lower

plyle02
07/20/2016, 05:18 PM
How do the fish look? Are they healthy and vibrant? When feeding, have you considered direct feeding with frozen food to your lps? Have you considered doing a large water change to offset what ails the tank? Not there to see what is going on, but when in doubt, water changes always are your friend. Can you provide pics? The tank, sump, skimmer, whatever you can will help:) Cheers

Croff
07/27/2016, 09:31 AM
Fish look healthy, no problems with them. I've been feeding frozen food to LPS once it twice weekly. Here are some pics, corals and sump... Not very good quality, I'm afraid...
Reefer 170, 2 MP-10, Deltec 1351, 1 liter Siporax



http://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20160727/6d3e7ff2f50857c88134e14f7aadbb7b.jpghttp://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20160727/09580145971a43b12a3eca81244092cb.jpghttp://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20160727/bae3069ac9a0216f497d0a8f7a46cd73.jpghttp://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20160727/7f58de5ada1f340bf70d4d08c0f64e71.jpghttp://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20160727/3da73169ad1a32ffd3e3f14dbc121eaf.jpg

Croff
07/27/2016, 09:35 AM
Acanthastrea on the second pic was growing like crazy 3 months ago, as was the seriatopora caliendrum (the green one, not the hystrix on the left, which has been in the tank for one month and seems to be OK)

plyle02
07/27/2016, 03:17 PM
Everything seems fine, the skimmer looks to be pulling wet, see if you can adjust to not skim as hard, that is very much key to getting nutrients balanced on the Probiotic based system, otherwise if too wet, you may be skimming out all the things you are dosing. The siporax setup looks good, when that kicks in, you will be running very low, so make sure you are feeding well to the tank. All in all, the tank is beautiful, and has tons of potential. Nice job, the setup looks great!

Croff
07/28/2016, 12:40 AM
Thank you, Perry

Croff
08/26/2016, 12:38 PM
Hello again,
Nothing has changed in the last 4 weeks, the same nitrates and phosphates (16 and 0,3) measured with different brand tests; two drops Pro Bio S and NP Pro for 130 liters total water, plus Coral A, V, B, E; one liter of Siporax for the last 2 months and some new additions, Zeo Mix and Phosphate Minus added last week each inside a bag in the sump.
How long do you think will take for me to notice the reduction in nitrates and phosphates after adding them? I understand one week won't be enough, but still can't understand where those high levels came from and don't know what else to do...
As always, thank you in advance for your help

Myka
08/28/2016, 07:43 AM
I can understand the NO3 and PO4 readings affecting the few SPS negatively, but the LPS should not have issue with the numbers you've reported at all. I'm not familiar with the Red Sea Reefers series, but your photos look to me like you are lighting with LEDs? If so, which LEDs are you using and what are the settings and length of photoperiod? Have you taken any PAR readings? Do you handfeed any of your LPS? Struggling LPS really get a boost from a couple thawed mysis shrimp every 2-3 days.

One last thing, have you watched the tank from a distance and checked that the Flame Angelfish is not picking at corals? Dwarf Angelfish you have about a 50/50 chance of them biting corals. I had one that was well behaved for about a year, and then he start to bite all my corals, but it was a 90-gallon tank chock full of SPS corals and he bit them all so the focus wasn't on just a few, and the corals could handle it they just didn't have very good polyp extension.

Croff
08/29/2016, 03:54 AM
You are right, my corals having problems are mostly SPS. The only LPS receding was one acanthastrea, that finally died 3 days ago. I was hand feeding regularly as some of my other corals, but it was not extending its polyps as it used to do.
I'm using one Kessil A360W which I had for a long time (also used in my previous tank) with no changes in length of photoperiod since the beginning, and that same acanthastrea was growing noticeable before I changed to AF; the rest of my corals seemed to also like it.
Everything is pointing to high nitrates/phosphates, but I'm struggling to lower them, which never was a problem with my previous tank and NOPOX... Let's see if in a few days of using Zeo mix and Phosphate minus things change. Would you recommend to stop using Coral A,V, B, E until nutrients decrease? Right now I'm using 1 drop every other day.
And yes, I knew of the potential problems with the flame angel, but as far as I know, it's not touching anything.

Myka
08/29/2016, 09:41 AM
I think that having to rely on significant carbon dosing (NOPOX) to keep nutrients low is probably a sign that you're lacking in the husbandry department. Maybe you aren't doing effective waterchanges or maybe your equipment isn't up to snuff or maybe you're feeding more than your system can handle. Your system has more nutrients going in than going out. Maybe it will balance out as Perry suggests or maybe you need to take a harder look at your husbandry.

I do think that cutting back or cutting out on the Coral A, V, E, and B might be a good idea for now. The point of those additives is to provide nutrients to the corals in a low nutrient environment, and if your water column is already full of nutrients I don't see why you should add more.

Croff
08/29/2016, 02:47 PM
I'm sure you are right, but I thought 1-2 ml of NOPOX daily for a 150 liters system was not really significant, it's almost the minimum quantity you can use according to instructions. And with that quantity nitrates were 2-3 and phosphates 0,02-0,03. What is clear, as you said, is that there are more nutrients going in than out, I just have to discover why and do something about it. What still annoys me is that that nutrient spike happened when I changed to AF, not before... Maybe the system was unstable and the nutrient spike was going to happen anyway, or maybe there is a problem with my Pro Bio S bottle for whatever reason (I'll buy a new one, just to try), I don't know, but I'll keep trying...
I will also cut out Coral A, V, B, E and see if it has any effect.
Thank you again for your help

plyle02
08/29/2016, 05:59 PM
Croff,
I know it is frustrating, but if you look over my thread, I gave insight into the fact that husbandry is more important than dosing. Patience is always rewarded in the hobby, especially with sps corals. Personally, I would evaluate the skimmer first, is it up to the challenge, meaning is it capable of at least twice system volume? Next, is there detritus building in the sump? Are you feeding fish and seeing food uneaten? A system that pushes the limits needs sound practices, regular water changes with 0.00 RODI, top off with RODI always 0.00 tds. Regular basting of rocks and disturbance of sand, but most importantly, a skimmer that pulls it out quickly.

Croff
08/30/2016, 02:14 AM
Hello Perry,
To tell you the truth, I've been considering changing my skimmer more then once... It's the only different thing from my previous build ( I had a Bubble Magus Curve 5 ) and I'm not really happy with it. It's a Deltec 1351 with adjustable DC pump and supposed to work in aquariums from 350 to 600 liters depending on stocking (mine is 170 liters total, not counting rocks).
There is some detritus building in the sump, but it's not that much and I clean it every week with water changes. Only feed my fishes once a day and they seem to eat everything and my RODI tds is 0 according to two different tests. Just the same I did in the past with good results, except the skimmer, so that may be the problem
Thanks

plyle02
08/30/2016, 04:30 AM
Hello Perry,
To tell you the truth, I've been considering changing my skimmer more then once... It's the only different thing from my previous build ( I had a Bubble Magus Curve 5 ) and I'm not really happy with it. It's a Deltec 1351 with adjustable DC pump and supposed to work in aquariums from 350 to 600 liters depending on stocking (mine is 170 liters total, not counting rocks).
There is some detritus building in the sump, but it's not that much and I clean it every week with water changes. Only feed my fishes once a day and they seem to eat everything and my RODI tds is 0 according to two different tests. Just the same I did in the past with good results, except the skimmer, so that may be the problem
Thanks

Please post a video or picture of the skimmer in action, I am curious to see what kind of collection you are getting. Thanks

Croff
08/30/2016, 04:38 AM
https://vimeo.com/180717159

I cleaned the skimmer cup two days ago after my last water change, and the whole skimmer 10 days ago, so I think it hasn't settle down yet. It's skimming a bit wet, I believe

plyle02
08/30/2016, 12:20 PM
Here is my skimmer which is constantly at work, it appears this way with dry foamy skim all day 24-7, this pic taken the day after cleaning :)

http://i425.photobucket.com/albums/pp331/plyle02/IMG_7440_1.jpg (http://s425.photobucket.com/user/plyle02/media/IMG_7440_1.jpg.html)

kevlow
08/30/2016, 01:01 PM
Here is my skimmer which is constantly at work, it appears this way with dry foamy skim all day 24-7, this pic taken the day after cleaning :)

http://i425.photobucket.com/albums/pp331/plyle02/IMG_7440_1.jpg (http://s425.photobucket.com/user/plyle02/media/IMG_7440_1.jpg.html)

Perry,
To what do you attribute the dark rich color of your skimmate? Is it due to sheer volume of fish or coral food, chemical supplement dosing as opposed to fish food, or due to using frozen as opposed to dry foods? Look forward to your input.

carlosmos
08/30/2016, 01:12 PM
I can not ser the perro vídeo [emoji30]


Enviado desde mi iPhone utilizando Tapatalk

plyle02
08/30/2016, 01:29 PM
Perry,
To what do you attribute the dark rich color of your skimmate? Is it due to sheer volume of fish or coral food, chemical supplement dosing as opposed to fish food, or due to using frozen as opposed to dry foods? Look forward to your input.

Hi Kevin,
When running system based on bacteria and carbon source, it has been well documented that the skimmer seems to perform much better. The skimmer is an ATB cone skimmer powered by a Eheim 1260 pump. I have used it on and off of algae based and probiotic based systems. This is by far the most grungy, thick, dark and constant skimmate observed. I do only feed frozen, yes my fish are snobs and get mainly LRS Reef Frenzy, 2-3 times daily, in a chunk about the size of half dollar each time:) I still maintain low values despite this feeding regime, and dose all the AF supps daily. If your skimmer is too wet, likely the bacteria is skimmed off before it can become effective, as with coral supps too, that said, the skimmer is supposed to run dry... Cheers

Croff
08/31/2016, 04:27 AM
So if skimmer is too wet, bacteria is skimmed off before it becomes effective? Maybe that is my problem... I was worried because if I skim dry, I don't collect almost anything in the collection cup, although I'm feeding less than you, only once a day and not always frozen

plyle02
08/31/2016, 02:11 PM
So if skimmer is too wet, bacteria is skimmed off before it becomes effective? Maybe that is my problem... I was worried because if I skim dry, I don't collect almost anything in the collection cup, although I'm feeding less than you, only once a day and not always frozen

The point is that the skimmer should still collect, if it only collects wet, then maybe that is your issue, but the idea is that the bacteria and carbon should have kicked your skimmer in to overdrive, it does not appear to be happening. The heart of the system is the skimmer, this is the most important function to remove what your are feeding. Cheers

2una
08/31/2016, 06:17 PM
I suspect the copper in E might be a factor for some of us.
600L tank - I was dosing 2/3 drops A+V+B daily & holding my No3 levels fine with 3 drops each ProBioS & NP Pro.( +/- 3 months like this) Then i started including E & i've been chasing my tail trying to get No3 back under control ever since, now dosing 16 drops/day for the last month & struggling to get it to still come back down.
Dosed E for about 2 months before i stopped dosing it.

Using Comp ABC,don't use AF salt as there's no agent in the country here & its too expensive to ship in.

Reefable
09/01/2016, 03:59 PM
I have been having the same issue. Since I started using AF products my Nitrates went up to 10 and is staying there my phosphates is at 0. My system is 150gallon. Did a 70% WC last week but nitrates still at 10. I have increased feeding to add some phosphates as the bacteria needs carbon, nitrates and phosphates to work (Redfield ratio). I m following this thread closely.


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Croff
11/15/2016, 03:40 PM
Well, two and a half months have passed and my nitrates are still between 12-16. Phosphates decreased last week to 0,12 but only because I used Phosguard for some days (before that was still around 0,3). Still using Pro Bio S (bought a new bottle just in case), NP Pro (changed from drops to doser just in case), stopped using A,V,B,E and did weekly water changes as always. I have been using Zeo Mix, Phosphate Minus and Carbon, but in a bag, instead of a reactor. Same skimmer but skimming drier, although it seems there is not much to skim, as my collection cup never gets too full. As my salt and component 1,2,3 are finishing, I'm considering switching back to Red Sea, because I've been using Aquaforest for almost seven months and things are clearly worst than they where in May. Any new suggestion from any of you will be appreciated.
Thank you

2una
11/16/2016, 01:27 AM
Croff maybe try some of their Life bio fil (seeded matrix),some more bacteria real estate but its already seeded.

I'm also still same like you trying to get No3 to kick down from months ago,I'm now running zeomix at KZ recommended amounts & flow to see if that will do something.

Croff
11/16/2016, 03:45 AM
I'll try it if I can find it here.
What seems strange to me is that nitrates climbed to 13-16 when I started using Aquaforest and they have been always the same, not more, not less, and I have added Siporax and then Zeo Mix since. It's like they have done nothing to the system in all these months... And yes, I have measured with different tests.
I have never used Bio S; do you think that could help? If I continue with Aquaforest, would it be better to use Reef salt instead of Probiotic? Would it be a big difference if I buy a reactor for Zeo and Phosphate Minus? (although Phosguard seemed to work in less than a week).

2una
11/16/2016, 04:34 AM
I don't know mate i got no answers either, it seems like the nitrifying bacteria are working to get No3 present but the hold up seems to be the denitrifying bacteria to get rid of it from there. I got 2 skimmers running so skimmer ain't the issue for me.
I also tried adding not BioS but ProBioF & that's in amongst the list of things i've tried that brought no change,added more matrix,differant bottles of ProBioS + Np Pro.
The siporax or matrix i think needs to be away in a low flow area rather than high flow looking thru the siporax thread.
In my trials to date the zeomix i didn't see bringing any improvement at the 300/300/300 zeo/carbon/phos mix in a reactor so i've now stepped things up with the zeomix running by itself & pushing the "safe" zone some.

Its taken me months to build up what i been doing with the increasing levels of Zeomix so for you that Life Bio Fil might be a quicker result & a lot safer way to try out

plyle02
11/16/2016, 06:01 PM
Hi Croff,
At this point, I think we should evaluate the skimmer, given that it is usually what helps to reduce N&P, regardless of what type system. That, or there must be a source of nitrates that is undetected, just seems odd to still be having this issue. I totally understand your frustration, and hope that it is resolved, and hopefully corals are ok? Please let me know if I can help? Cheers!

Croff
11/28/2016, 04:36 PM
Hello again,
I have been using NOPOX along with Pro Bio S and NP Pro for the last 7-9 days, and my nitrates are now 5 and phosphates 0,04. Since that seems to be working, do you think that I could continue using all Aquaforest products except ProBio S and NP Pro and substitute them with NOPOX? I also stopped using Zeo Mix and Phosphate Minus, so my only nutrient control would be NOPOX.

Again, thank you for your patience and advise

plyle02
11/29/2016, 05:14 AM
Sure,
You could use AF Carbon, Energy, Vitality, Amino Mix, Power Food, and Component 123.
Cheers

orly20
12/14/2016, 02:10 PM
@Croff
Any updates?


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Croff
12/17/2016, 09:17 AM
Hello, and sorry foto the delay...
Nitrates now around 1, phosphates 0.03. Dosing AF products except Pro Bio S and NP Pro which were substituted by NOPOX almost 1 month ago. Everything looks really good now, coral growing nicely. I also stopped using Zeo Mix and Phosphate Minus, so nutrients are maintained low using only 1 ml. of NOPOX daily, which is what I was using before starting with AF. I really don't know why Pro Bio S and NP Pro didn't work for me, but I have tried for several months without success.