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Old 02/21/2018, 10:04 PM   #1
dhalderman
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Triton method with Carbon dosing questions

Background:
I am interested in Triton method, interested in not doing water changes and agree with methodology that WC's are to remove waste, and to add elements that have been used up, and that we have other ways to do this besides water changes. I do not have room for a refugium nor do I really wanna upkeep one, so I will be trying a modified triton method, using their core7 "other methods" that does not have macro algae boosting aspect to it.
Proposal:
For the supplementing side, alk daily and mg and cal weekly testing and supplementing as usually. For all else I will be using the ICP testing about once a month, which would be comparable in price to what im paying for WC. With the results, I will supplement individually the things that are low. That part is simple enough.
The export side I can periodically use GAC, and GFO if I need, but I want to primarily use carbon dosing (and of course I have an oversized skimmer). I like the carbon dosing side because like macro algae like chaeto, it gives back something in the form of bacterioplankton for coral. So the nutrients are not wasted. Which would sorta be like how Triton wants some die off in the chaeto so it will release some back nutrients for the coral.

Currently system is pretty much ULNS, Nitrate is undetectable until I dose it or put ungodly amount of food that the fish cant finish in one setting. Ph is below .03 almost always, using hanna ultra low checker. I use protein skimmer and WC and thats it. Rarely use GAC or GFO.

My questions are.....
1) I've never carbon dosed, what is the most pure carbon dosing supplement? Can I carbon dose an ULNS? It does have minimal algae in there so some nutrients are there, i'm hoping to replace it with the bacteria population.
2)Anybody see any catastrophic problems with this way of doing things? I know everyone has their own ideas and preferences, but does anybody strongly disagree and think it wont work?


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Old 02/23/2018, 06:33 AM   #2
Subsea
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While adding organic carbon and removing free swimming bacteria using a protein skimmer works to reduce nutrients, it does little to feed carbon to coral

Dana Riddle in articles on Advanced Aquaria makes it abundantly clear that carbon dioxide feeds carbon to corals. Adding an organic carbon source like vodka grows bacteria, it does not grow coral.

IMO, with research applied by Ken Feldermen on Advanced Aquaria peer reviewed articles on carbon dosing in reef tanks, bacteria populations will be skewed. What does skewed bacteria populations do? It depends on the type of bacteria.

With respect to your goal of ultra low nutrient system, I will say this, “many ULNS tanks have crashed waking this fine line of starving coral zooanthelia to maximize colors.


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Last edited by Subsea; 02/23/2018 at 07:03 AM.
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Old 02/23/2018, 10:35 PM   #3
dhalderman
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A rather large portion of what corals feed on is bacterioplankton no? So my thinking is Carbon dosing creates more free floating bacteria, more bacteria for corals to eat.
If I had to state my "goal" as you say, it would be algae removal, and prevention of it growing back. My tank is already ULNS, that goal is achieved. Yet Algae still remains, not a ton, but it's there, about 15% of my rockwork id say has descent amount on it.

I don't wanna starve the corals, I feed the fish kinda heavy, I have reef energy on hand and may invest in acropower. No matter how low nutrients there are I think there is always barely enough for SOMETHING to take advantage of it. I guess I was hoping I could make that something be bacteria, and not algae.
It is really hard to find forums where people have used carbon dosing to combat algae, but I guess that's essentially what I wanna do.


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Old 02/23/2018, 11:08 PM   #4
Subsea
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dhalderman View Post
A rather large portion of what corals feed on is bacterioplankton no? So my thinking is Carbon dosing creates more free floating bacteria, more bacteria for corals to eat.
If I had to state my "goal" as you say, it would be algae removal, and prevention of it growing back. My tank is already ULNS, that goal is achieved. Yet Algae still remains, not a ton, but it's there, about 15% of my rockwork id say has descent amount on it.

I don't wanna starve the corals, I feed the fish kinda heavy, I have reef energy on hand and may invest in acropower. No matter how low nutrients there are I think there is always barely enough for SOMETHING to take advantage of it. I guess I was hoping I could make that something be bacteria, and not algae.
It is really hard to find forums where people have used carbon dosing to combat algae, but I guess that's essentially what I wanna do.
First off, captive reef tanks are already heavy with bacteria. If your SPS are doing well, why grow more bacteria, particularly since you donít know which bacteria are growing. If the corals in your tank, do not feed on that size bacteria, then you have a bacterial soup in your water column with nothing to eat it. Why not add a few snails to clean up algae. After 45 years of reefkeeping, in the last 6 months, I have come to the conclusion that captive reef tanks have skewed bacteria populations because of protein skimming, carbon dosing and lack of predatation. To that end, I am installing uv sterilizers on every tank I have.

https://www.reefcleaners.org/nuisance-algae-id-guide

I donít know what nuisance algae you have, but snails and UV sterilizer has worked well for me.


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Old 02/24/2018, 06:51 AM   #5
JohnnyHildo
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Subsea View Post
With respect to your goal of ultra low nutrient system, I will say this, ďmany ULNS tanks have crashed waking this fine line of starving coral zooanthelia to maximize colors.
I have to agree with this. i found it tough to balance my nutrients with carbon dosing and ulns. the carbon began to out compete my feedings and after quickly starving out a few acropora I ended up pulling the plug on running so lean and then eventually carbon dosing in general. the window was just too small between beauty and catastrophe.


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Old 02/25/2018, 09:58 PM   #6
dhalderman
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""...If your SPS are doing well, why grow more bacteria...""
To out compete the algae for reduced algae growth.

""...You will have a bacteria soup with nothing to eat it..."
The protein skimmer will "eat it", that's what carbon dosing is all about, the bacteria take up the nutrients and the skimmer skims out the bacteria.
Not really worried about bacteria sizes. I guess I only see there being two options, the bacteria is appropriate as coral food, which is a plus, or it isn't, in which case they are not eaten, and are skimmed out instead.

One thing i'll definitely be taking to heart is the issue of starving the corals, if I do this ill be starting very slow and paying very close attention to color, PE, and alk/cal daily uptake. I've seen issues with undernourished corals before in my tank and have fixed it so I know what to look for. With that previous issue after much trial and error it ended up being the lights, after changing to now a hybrid lighting system my corals are looking MUCH better and this is the only reason I now think I can consider something like carbon dosing.
I just took my emperor aquatics UV light offline because I saw no change when using it or not using it.
Regarding the snails, I can definitely dig that, but it's such a bummer cuz I've tried a couple different kinds and they all end up on the glass. Which kind have you had success with? Which ones are more likely to stay on the rock work?


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Old 02/25/2018, 10:13 PM   #7
dhalderman
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P.S.
My problem algae green hair algae.


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Old 02/26/2018, 05:12 AM   #8
Subsea
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https://www.reefcleaners.org/nuisance-algae-id-guide

Because GHA spreads by spores, I would continue using UV. See above link for suggested janitors.

PS. As a side note on UV sterilizer. In conversation with a PHD molecular biologist on another hobby forum website, he said that when bacteria cell membrane was ruptured by UV radiation, the organic nutrients inside made a gumbo for filter feeders to eat.

I have six tanks at about 500G in my living room. Every tank but one has a large UV sterilizer on it.

My 25 year old 75G Jaubert Plenum and 30G EcoSystem mud/cryptic sponge refugium has no media and no mechanical filtration. Cryptic sponges convert DOC into DIC and Marine Snow. This tank is feed two fresh oysters each day in addition to me adding 15ml of ammonia twice a day.


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Current Tank Info: 10,000G. Greenhouse Macro Growout

Last edited by Subsea; 02/26/2018 at 05:41 AM.
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Old 02/27/2018, 05:15 AM   #9
Subsea
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dhalderman View Post
""...If your SPS are doing well, why grow more bacteria...""
To out compete the algae for reduced algae growth.

""...You will have a bacteria soup with nothing to eat it..."
The protein skimmer will "eat it", that's what carbon dosing is all about, the bacteria take up the nutrients and the skimmer skims out the bacteria.
Not really worried about bacteria sizes. I guess I only see there being two options, the bacteria is appropriate as coral food, which is a plus, or it isn't, in which case they are not eaten, and are skimmed out instead.

One thing i'll definitely be taking to heart is the issue of starving the corals, if I do this ill be starting very slow and paying very close attention to color, PE, and alk/cal daily uptake. I've seen issues with undernourished corals before in my tank and have fixed it so I know what to look for. With that previous issue after much trial and error it ended up being the lights, after changing to now a hybrid lighting system my corals are looking MUCH better and this is the only reason I now think I can consider something like carbon dosing.
I just took my emperor aquatics UV light offline because I saw no change when using it or not using it.
Regarding the snails, I can definitely dig that, but it's such a bummer cuz I've tried a couple different kinds and they all end up on the glass. Which kind have you had success with? Which ones are more likely to stay on the rock work?
With respect to your comment that the protein skimmer will pick up the extra load from carbon dosing in a reef tank, the same Dana Riddle article at Advanced Aquaria quantified exactly what a protein skimmer did remove. With respect to DOC:
Protein skimmers remove, at best, 35%
GAC removes 65%
Mature reef biofilter removes 75%


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Current Tank Info: 10,000G. Greenhouse Macro Growout
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Old 02/27/2018, 02:25 PM   #10
HBtank
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Subsea View Post
With respect to your comment that the protein skimmer will pick up the extra load from carbon dosing in a reef tank, the same Dana Riddle article at Advanced Aquaria quantified exactly what a protein skimmer did remove. With respect to DOC:
Protein skimmers remove, at best, 35%
GAC removes 65%
Mature reef biofilter removes 75%
Bacteria is not DOC...

Just getting terms straight, DOC is fundamentally dissolved organic carbon smaller than bacteria, which is particulate organic carbon. Regardless I think you meant that it will selectively skim bacteria, which may drive shifts in populations (i.e. https://www.advancedaquarist.com/2011/3/aafeature.)

But that is not what the OP is asking (long term effects of carbon dosing), he is asking if the carbon dosing will be synonymous to a refugium in the Triton method, in what it provides in "food" and export with elevated levels of bacteria.

Anyway, I personally would be skeptical that any bacterial from carbon dosing would be a good food source. But it certainly is a proven export method if skimmed.


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