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Old 01/02/2018, 03:43 PM   #1
dougs280z
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Corals dying fast - All parameters look good??

Over the past couple weeks, my corals (mushrooms/frogspon/leather) have been dying off quickly. So far, Ive tested ammonia, nitrates, ph, ka, and phosphates and all have been well within limits. Temperature is about 75, and my salinity is ~1.023. I've been doing water changes with the same water (RO system from home) and nothing has seemed to fix it. The only other thing I haven't checked for is Copper, but I'm not sure how it would be getting in to the tank unless the RO system is not working. Does anyone have any other things I should check? I'm going to purchase a copper test kit soon but figured I'd check with everyone else first to see if there is any other advice. Thanks.

- Also, I have a sump with skimmer and lots of live rock and run penguin 200 filter with charcoal


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Old 01/02/2018, 03:57 PM   #2
nereefpat
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How long have you had the corals?

Temp at 75 is a little low, but probably not catastrophic. 78 would be better.

Specific gravity is too low for a reef. Should be 1.026. How are you measuring? Hydrometer or refractometer, and has is been calibrated?

Well within limits doesn't tell us much as far as test results. What are the actual values?

Lighting?


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Old 01/02/2018, 04:41 PM   #3
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what does dying look like....shrinking....detaching....?


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Old 01/02/2018, 07:05 PM   #4
dougs280z
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Ive had the mushrooms for a while, probably 2-3 years now, the rest of them have been a year or more. Lighting is LED, but hasn't changed over the past year. I have both a hydrometer and refractometer and both are reading about the same. I think i gradually lowered the specific gravity to help reduce some green algae outbreaks last year, but again, nothing over the past couple of months has changed. The "well within limits" - The amonia/nitrates/nitrites/phosphate all read 0 according to the color chart. I think the PH was about 8.2.

Also, they are basically just dissappearing. Shrinking/dissolving into nothing.


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Old 01/02/2018, 08:10 PM   #5
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Have you checked your magnisium and calcium levels, elevated levels in those can cause soft corals to burn quickly


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Old 01/02/2018, 08:23 PM   #6
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Chlorine/chloramine?


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Old 01/02/2018, 08:48 PM   #7
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The zeros for nitrates and phoshates could be a problem.

What about alkalinity (KH)? Calcium too? Mg, if you have it.

If I had to guess, I'd say the corals you have need more nutrients (N and P)

Edit: oh, and raise that salinity back up


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Old 01/03/2018, 05:37 AM   #8
dougs280z
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Thanks, I'll see if I can pick up some tests for magnesium and I never checked calcium because I didn't think it would be the issue, but perhaps it is too high like someone suggested. I am curious about the chlorine though. Is there a test for that? Thanks.


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Old 01/03/2018, 05:44 AM   #9
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Pictures would help greatly, FTS, and close up shots as well


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Old 01/03/2018, 05:53 AM   #10
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If everything is dying out at once even the coralline algae I would wonder if your leaching metals into the water somehow. Examples of metal leaks can come from bad return pumps, magnet scrubbers, pennies (yes...). It just takes their seals to be broken some to start.


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Old 01/03/2018, 06:38 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by josephxsxn View Post
If everything is dying out at once even the coralline algae I would wonder if your leaching metals into the water somehow.
This was my first thought, as well. You can purchase PolyFilter to check/remove metal contamination.




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Old 01/03/2018, 06:47 AM   #12
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To reitterate, it would be very helpful to have better numbers and more tank info. If you've been aggressively running some type of phosphate remover, for example, to deal with your previous algae outbreak and have cut on how much your feed your fish and/or have a very light fish load you very well could have reduced your phosphate to levels that would cause your corals to have problems. If i's 0.0 with an API it does not have the same concern level as 0.0 with Elos or Hanna.

Another possibility is the lights are staying on too long. Was the timer changed or replaced? Lights should not be on for more than 12 hours. Too much light causes an excess of O2 production from the zooxantheallae and it will burn the corals much like H2O2. But again we need more info.


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Old 01/03/2018, 08:55 AM   #13
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I checked twice...i don't see alkalinity anywhere either...but asking about copper?

My advice is to go read all the sticky posts


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Old 01/03/2018, 09:11 AM   #14
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You have had these for quite a while so definitely something has changed.
I agree, look for copper....copper kills....is it just these corals or anything else die.
You also say Nitrate, Phosphate, Amonnia, within limits....test kits should show 0.
Mushrooms, leathers like to have a tiny amount .03 of iodide (not iodine which is not safe).
Frogspawn you can target feed..do you do this...mushrooms don't like light but leathers love light...are they placed right.
To me, 75 is a tad low....I am 78-79......and SG for a tank with corals should be 1.026.
Are you sure your 1.023? Wrong SG is actually quite common and leads to slow deaths.
Those are all the things I can think of.....good luck.....lets us know what you find..


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Old 01/03/2018, 09:20 AM   #15
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Btw...you say think PH 8.2 which is fine....but what's think? You know right?
Cause PH in the 7's would be acidic and a problem..

So let's define:
Temp 78-79
1.026 or 35ppt (NSW)
PH 8.0 - 8.4
Calcium 400-460
Alk 8-12
Magnisium 1320-1360
Phosphate 0
Nitrate 0
Ammonia 0
Copper 0


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Old 01/03/2018, 11:08 AM   #16
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Any sign of magnets rusting possibly?


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Old 01/03/2018, 11:17 AM   #17
reefwiser
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Take apart each pump in your system and check for rust.


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Old 01/03/2018, 12:10 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Uncle99 View Post
Btw...you say think PH 8.2 which is fine....but what's think? You know right?
Cause PH in the 7's would be acidic and a problem..

So let's define:
Temp 78-79
1.026 or 35ppt (NSW)
PH 8.0 - 8.4
Calcium 400-460
Alk 8-12
Magnisium 1320-1360
Phosphate 0
Nitrate 0
Ammonia 0
Copper 0
7.0 is neutral and many healthy tanks in homes drop as low as 7.6-7.8 at night due to indoor CO2 levels. Not ideal for growth, but not going to kill anything.


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Old 01/03/2018, 03:48 PM   #19
Uncle99
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Agreed, but his corals are not growing, he calls it death..


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Old 01/23/2018, 10:33 AM   #20
dougs280z
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Thanks everyone. I haven't been receiving notifications of new posts, but I have tried a few other things without anything working as of yet. I have basically lost all my corals, and the coraline algae is fading as well. I have checked for chlorine recently as well and the test was negative. I purchased carbon pads to try and remove metals if there were any, but nothing changed with it either. I am curious about the pumps possibly having a crack and leaching into the water. I am going to do a deep clean soon and see if I can remove all pumps and filters etc and go over them or replace them. I'll look into the polyfilter as well. Thanks again.


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Old 01/23/2018, 12:11 PM   #21
Uncle99
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That's not good news, sorry for your loses.
just a thought, what type of lighting are you using?


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Old 01/23/2018, 12:53 PM   #22
dougs280z
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I'm using an LED style light. But I've noticed no differences with it on/off and I definitely think it's something in the water.

What other metals cause issues like this other than copper?


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Old 01/23/2018, 01:56 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dougs280z View Post
I'm using an LED style light. But I've noticed no differences with it on/off and I definitely think it's something in the water.

What other metals cause issues like this other than copper?
Are you using gfo or other another type of phosphate absorbing media?


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Old 01/23/2018, 02:16 PM   #24
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What jumps right out at me is your low salinity, why are you running it so low? It should be at least at 1.025, preferably 1.026. I would top off with 1.026 saltwater until your salinity is up to 1.026. How are you measuring your salinity?


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Old 01/24/2018, 05:47 AM   #25
dougs280z
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I'm actually not sure why I had the salinity that low. I believe I've always had it around the 1.023-1.024 numbers. I've got it back up to 1.025 as of now.

Update - I removed pumps yesterday and found two pumps not working - one small powerhead in the main tank, and one powerhead (which I though I actually shut off) in the sump. The one in the sump was connected to my uv sterilizer that quit working last year and I haven't replaced it yet. That pump actually shocked me pretty good when i removed it so I think I found my problem. I do have a grounding probe so I don't know if the stray voltage was an issue as I haven't gotten shocked in the actual tank, but once I removed it from the tank I got a good jolt which leads me to believe if voltage is getting out, then metal could be getting into the tank. I'm going to do a large water change today and hopefully start seeing an improvement. Thanks again.


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