View Full Version : new macro tank - pointers welcome

03/27/2017, 09:18 AM
Been tossing this around for a while, had a 40 breeder; so I started a macro algae tank.

Lighting 4x24w t5:coralife 6700k, geisman flora, ati blue+ and purple+; 18w 8000k leds. I have a coralife 10000k bulb also but this color spectrum looks nice and everything seems to be responding well.

I've found finding macro to be a bit challenging; varieties of caulerpa and gracilaria no problem, but others a bit more difficult and costly to get. I've found most selling tiny little pieces they call an inch, but isn't really. Any sources anyone can share would be great, I do know all the common ones. I thought dragon's tongue and dragon's breath was 2 different varieties of halymenia, I misidentified some as gracilaria hayi and ordered a dragon's tongue and a dragon's breath. I now have a large amount of dragon's breath and no dragons tongue, maybe I'm mistaken.

I have some pieces that require proper reef conditions, so i do maintain my ca, mg, and alk. I dose seachem fuel which is like a carb, vit, etc additive; also iron. I've been feeding the tank with coral foods to keep the nitrogen cycle flowing.

I loaded it up with a 1250 pack of pods from aquarium depot. Do you think I need more to ensure a massive breeding pop, I am planning to hatch some cuttlefish, and the amphipods will serve as a food source until they get big enough to eat something else.

Any pics or pointers welcomed as inspiration.

Michael Hoaster
03/28/2017, 12:04 PM
It looks like you've got a pretty good variety going. Once we get into summer, more varieties will be available. Seas are too rough for collecting in winter. You'd think they'd farm a lot of it, to keep inventory up, but they're all pretty small operations at this point. It's still a pretty small niche of the hobby.

Plants love ca, mg and alk, so you should be good. They are not fans of super low nutrients though. Keep feeding the tank. Macros need a lot. If your plants aren't growing, they need more food.

No idea on the cuttlefish but they are cool! Pods need food too, to maintain populations. Algae and phytoplankton.

I look forward to your progress. Good luck!

Ron Reefman
03/29/2017, 02:56 PM
Have you looked at Gulf Coast Ecosystems? http://www.live-plants.com/

I'm really just getting my display refugium started and my first few came from them and my collecting in the Gulf of Mexico.

03/29/2017, 09:04 PM
Yes thanks I got a couple of pieces from them today, think I'll wait a bit like Hoaster said and check back with them for more varieties.

04/08/2017, 01:06 PM
Have you looked at Gulf Coast Ecosystems? http://www.live-plants.com/

I'm really just getting my display refugium started and my first few came from them and my collecting in the Gulf of Mexico.

How was the size portions of the items you got from them? Been thinking about doing something like this and have the usual macros and I'm interested in some of theirs just never heard of them before.

04/08/2017, 09:42 PM
Been looking for a reason to order from them. Maybe this one will be it:

04/11/2017, 08:29 AM
I've ordered from live-plants many times. Never been disappointed , they have super customer service and always send plenty. We had a freak cold snap right after I ordered once and everything showed up dead ,they covered it without question. I run macro in all my tanks , and what thrives in one tank may waste away in another. It has been trial and error but I simply move them around until they find a tank they like.

05/07/2017, 12:03 PM
Update on the tank, overall I'm pretty happy, most specimens seem to growing, or at the very least not dying. I'm getting some cyano I'm not very happy with, I've been using a variety of coral foods and seachem fuel as a food source. My po4 was at .36 and nitrates always test at 0. So I did a mild drip of x-phosphate and am going to start with some kno3 today.

I'm thinking of maybe adding a couple few photosynthetic gorgonians.

Michael Hoaster
05/07/2017, 02:18 PM
Nice pic!

Potassium nitrate is a good, safe nutrient for plants. Gorgonians are cool! Challenging to keep happy and healthy. But it can be done and done well! Good luck!

05/07/2017, 04:32 PM
I've had this one going for years in my reef, I've seen some nice varieties at gulf coast.

05/07/2017, 04:46 PM
another angle of the macro tank

05/08/2017, 11:33 PM
The gorg you've had for years looks to be a Menella. They are supposed to be "easier" to keep NPS gorgs, and I've been wanting to try them for a while, especially since the yellow version is fairly bright.

05/22/2017, 09:25 AM
Help! 3 types of caulerpa dying overnight. Grape caulerpa doing fine. I stopped feeding the coral food because phosphates were through the roof and I was getting cyano. Phosphates came down and cyano receded. I started dosing kno3 in the form of spectricide, just raised the no3 to 5ppm. Everything was great until I changed my routine, but the cyano was driving me crazy.

Michael Hoaster
05/25/2017, 06:38 PM
How's it coming? Three caulerpas dying at once points to a nutrient deficiency. Fast-growing caulerpas are greedy. Keep feeding them.

Stump remover is a cheap version of potassium nitrate and a great nitrogen source.

05/30/2017, 08:46 PM
lost 2 of the caulerpa, one is recovering. I started feeding the tank again with coral foods and ditched the kno3. I put some chemipure elite in and a weekly 3ml drip of brightwell phosphat-E to help control po4. Cyano receded and everything else doing good.

06/08/2017, 08:32 PM
New addition, purple ribbon gorg seems to be doing well after a couple of weeks. Still learning, got the cyano wiped out and under control. Now nuisance algae doesn't realize this a decorative algae tank.

06/11/2017, 04:04 PM
Tank shot 2.5 months

06/15/2017, 09:16 PM
Give the gorg lots of food particles, day and night.

06/18/2017, 09:07 PM
Tank shot 2.5 months
What are you doing for filtration?

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06/19/2017, 08:19 AM
It's a 40 breeder with a ac70 hob filter, I built a custom flow diverter in the filter box to push the flow down and up through all the media. I run some seachem matrix biomedia, and chemipure elite. I have 2 small hydor circulation power heads with about 40 lbs of live rock in the tank. I have to harvest the grape caulerpa frequently, the macro algae absorbs all the nutrients. My only problem was an imbalance of phosphates that initially caused a cyano outbreak. I now have that under control.

07/14/2017, 07:08 PM
Added a couple of fish to spruce things up; a lawnmower blenny and flame angel. I'm blown away the flame angel is like florescent under this lighting. There's also a cuttlefish that I hatched but he only comes out at night; he's about 1.5" now and eating ghosties. So all in all a very interesting tank.

07/16/2017, 03:32 PM
I always wondered what could be put in with a cuttle.

07/16/2017, 04:30 PM
I always wondered what could be put in with a cuttle.

At this size anything that wont eat him, when he gets larger you would have to be more concerned. But these 2 guys will be too large for him to eat. Shrimp, crabs, and small fish are really all that will be on the menu; anything that get to about 4" will be safe.

11/23/2017, 09:14 AM
Anymore updates?