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ab5ebdxer
02/17/2017, 09:48 AM
Hey guys,

I am planning on adding live phyto to my tank over the next several months. I wonder if anyone has experience with determining the concentration of phyto in their tanks as effort to help give a appropriate amount of phyto? I have found some data on what that concentration should be, or at least what it is on a natural reef. Any ideas on what a captive reefs concentration should be would be appreciated as well. I suspect natural reef levels may not translate well to the need of a captive reef.

Thanks,

Mike

earwicker7
02/17/2017, 12:37 PM
Keeping an eye on this thread... was wondering the same thing myself.

gogo7
02/18/2017, 01:20 AM
you can measure nanno using a tool ... put a white disk, about one centimeter diameter on the end of a ruler, or marked wire, whatever, with markings in one centimeter increments.. lower the disk into your phyto until you can't see the disk anymore. cell count is measured by the milliliter, at four cm, there's just over eight million cells per mil. at five cm, it's just over five. my cultures usually go about five centimeters. sometimes deeper, the denser your culture, the faster that disk disappears. you might find a chart online for differing species. i think the norm was measured at about one hundred thousand cells per mil in reef water, cant' remember where i read it. i found that was too much phyto for the amount of filter feeders i actually had at the time. i usually dose about ten mils every other day, into four gallons. i don't use filtration, so it's difficult to say. i wc fairly regularly. and i sometimes skip as much as a week. not sure how this translates for larger tanks, but if you're using, go lightly at first and observe your filter feeders. clams, oysters, and the like will 'waste' phyto if there's too much. you'll notice snotty balls of green on your sandbed, which the worms will eat, but overfeeding is still over feeding. experiment by feeding and observing, then cut back and watch for shrinkage. you need to have the animals that are gonna eat it.
your animals will tell you when they've had enough...it's amazing how fast a tank will consume live phyto...your sponges are a good indicator of phyto usage, their colours will brighten up and they'll grow fast. like almost overnight. blue halis will move into the phyto stream if it's regular.
as far as natural reefs go, i look at colour. watch scuba vids... you can see the 'green' water they're swimming in..use the mentality of the 'scuba guys' dissappearing in the surf... like the white disc test. if you can get close without over doing it, you're on the right track. if your water turns green and stays green, stop.... you've got nutrient problems and a phyto bloom is happening.. not necessarily a bad thing, but unsightly and annoying as any algae outbreak.
good luck and i hope this drunken rambling helped.

herring_fish
02/20/2017, 10:41 AM
Thanks for the rambling. Now itís my turn.

I too am building toward high levels of live plankton, both phyto and zoo. I used 10 or 20ml per day in a 130g tank. I hope to have very high levels of zooplankton soon in my new 180 but it might be unsightly during prime viewing hours. We will just have to see what I can tolerate cosmetically. I few bug flying around might look cool but a cloud of insects swimming around in green water might not be attractive. Choosing the right time of day for feeding can help.

Now I will talk a little about feeding too much and waste. I don't know if you are working toward a SPS tank, NPS or what so feed can very a lot from tank to tank.

The last time I ginned up a filter feeding/NPS tank, I bought a wide variety of mini-starfish, snails, worms, crabs and other critters from GARF along with other sources. I got them where ever I could. I found that I had to expressly feed them to get them started. Brand new cultures can die out without it but once established, I slowly built up the feeding, sometimes I simply fed the critters directly. I used live dead and powdered food of all kinds.

After the cultures got going, I could feed more or less as I wanted and the critter counts would grow or shrink accordingly. Sometimes the tank was crawling with little starfish, other times with baby snails and other times there wasnít much to see.

As for those snotty balls, I had all kinds of detritus buildups come and go. The key for me was to GO SLOW and let the right critter populations grow to meet the different needs. I DO NOT suggest this but as an experiment; I did not export detritus via vacuuming or anything like that. I observed that while I never had a pristine looking clean sand bed, the buildups went away and were processed by a slowly an expanding food handling web.

We are familiar with the ascending food chain. That, in part is why we are using plankton. There is also a descending food chain we can take advantage of it we go slowly.

ab5ebdxer
03/03/2017, 06:40 PM
Thanks for the info. Now I have some way to quantify the amount being put in. I got my LED strip lights as well as the power supply so now just need to piece it together.

sde1500
03/03/2017, 06:44 PM
Thanks for the rambling. Now itís my turn.



I too am building toward high levels of live plankton, both phyto and zoo. I used 10 or 20ml per day in a 130g tank. I hope to have very high levels of zooplankton soon in my new 180 but it might be unsightly during prime viewing hours. We will just have to see what I can tolerate cosmetically. I few bug flying around might look cool but a cloud of insects swimming around in green water might not be attractive. Choosing the right time of day for feeding can help.



Now I will talk a little about feeding too much and waste. I don't know if you are working toward a SPS tank, NPS or what so feed can very a lot from tank to tank.



The last time I ginned up a filter feeding/NPS tank, I bought a wide variety of mini-starfish, snails, worms, crabs and other critters from GARF along with other sources. I got them where ever I could. I found that I had to expressly feed them to get them started. Brand new cultures can die out without it but once established, I slowly built up the feeding, sometimes I simply fed the critters directly. I used live dead and powdered food of all kinds.



After the cultures got going, I could feed more or less as I wanted and the critter counts would grow or shrink accordingly. Sometimes the tank was crawling with little starfish, other times with baby snails and other times there wasnít much to see.



As for those snotty balls, I had all kinds of detritus buildups come and go. The key for me was to GO SLOW and let the right critter populations grow to meet the different needs. I DO NOT suggest this but as an experiment; I did not export detritus via vacuuming or anything like that. I observed that while I never had a pristine looking clean sand bed, the buildups went away and were processed by a slowly an expanding food handling web.



We are familiar with the ascending food chain. That, in part is why we are using plankton. There is also a descending food chain we can take advantage of it we go slowly.



What zooplankton are you culturing for the tank if I may ask?

herring_fish
03/03/2017, 09:57 PM
I am restarting my tank after a total crash while on vacation because of an auto-top-off problem. It has been very very slow but I am in the last stages of getting the tank ready to be stocked.

http://asaherring.com/Reef/Tower/CritterTowersFlow6.jpg

As for the plankton, I want to grow anything that I can and I want going to go big. I am setting up a 6 or more toward plankton form in the garage with 6 inch diameter tube that are 6 feet tall. A preliminary study yielded 2 gallons of rotifer per day for one tube. It used water from the display tank and returns in a loop.


http://www.reefcentral.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1970938&highlight=plankton&page=5

neilp2006
03/15/2017, 09:38 PM
Secchi disk.

Or you could measure absorbable of light, but no real easy way of doing that


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