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Live Rock

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kmtfishchannel View Drop Down
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    Posted: August 24 2017 at 5:06pm

Where is a good place to buy an assortment of live rock with good coralline algae and other pest free organisms on it? I don’t have a lot of money to spend but I want to add more rock to my tank.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mark Peterson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 25 2017 at 8:25am
In my opinion, the best place to do that is from hobbyists right here in this group. I myself and others often sell our "lively" LR to our fellow hobbyists for just $1-$2/lb. Lively LR has tons of bacteria, live sponge, and a population of bugs and worms living in it. Not too long ago a hobbyist here needed to dismantle their large tank and they actually gave away their Coralline covered LR. It was awesome. Smile

One caution though, not all hobbyists know how to grow LR so the LR offered may sometimes be mostly white and almost barren of life.

If you were thinking LFS, they sell LR with practically NO Coralline Algae, no bugs and no worms. I mean no offense toward Local Fish Stores, but white and barren LR is all you'll typically find at the LFS and it can be costly. It is barren because it has been in relative darkness in a tub of salt water for so long that only a few bacteria survive in it. They also take it out of the water to send it home with customers, which then kills more life. Dead

The best way to move LR is submerged in water, described in a discussion listed in the Reefkeeping Tips linked here and referred to down below.

Now let's talk about pests. Did you know that out of the thousands of different organisms that live in LR and LS, there are only a handful of actual pests? The good thing is, we know how to deal with them. Give us a pest name right here and we will describe how to deal with it, usually without much effort on your part and without having to kill the entire LR.

Since you said that you want to add more rock to a running tank, there is another option. The LR currently in the tank, if it is lively LR with Coralline, Sponge, bugs and worms, will help grow more LR. I have Utah Rock which is clean and sterile. It's only $0.50/lb. 


When added to a good reef tank, Utah Rock quickly populates with bugs and worms. The Sponge and Coralline Algae take a little longer to grow but within 6 -12 months Utah Rock can become lively LR. In the pic below, ~85% of that LR started out as Utah Rock. Smile

Just trying to be helpful.
Aloha,
Mark  Hug


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote kmtfishchannel Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 25 2017 at 8:38am
Mine does have some but it's slow growing because i started with dry live rock. So I want live rock teaming with life.

Another question do you or anyone else have any experince with Live Rock N Reef in Utah? Good, bad, etc?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mark Peterson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 25 2017 at 10:05am
Dead dry LR grows slow and causes other things in the tank to grow slow or not at all, mostly for reasons that simply adding lively LR cannot help. In fact if good lively LR is added, the issues that are retarding growth of the dead rock will also retard the growth of the newly added lively LR. There is a solution which will fix the problem but if you don't mind, answers to the following questions will help identify the best solution:
How long has this tank been running? 
What size is the tank?
How much dead dry rock was used?
What sand was used?
What live organisms (LR, LS, Macroalgae, etc.) were added in setup and since?
May we see a pic, to help us better help you?

LR&R is a good store, but has changed hands more than most, so be wise in your purchases.

Aloha,
Mark  Hug
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote kmtfishchannel Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 25 2017 at 11:48am







This tank has been running for about 9 months.
It is a 60 gallon cube.
We did about 20lb (this is why I want more rock. The photos make it looks like there is no rock in the tank but I guess that is because we hardly have any.) of BRS pukani Dry live Rock ( that now has some purple and green coraline gowing all over the rock in spots and really well on the black part of the overflow.
We used crsued coral and special grade live sand bought also from BRS.
We have a lot of cheto and other macroalgae growing in our sump we even have stoped using our skimmer.

Fish are all doing well only a few corals are having some issue but that i'm sure is due to a lack of proper dosing that we are working on correcting slow but surely. Embarrassed


Edited by kmtfishchannel - August 25 2017 at 11:50am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote kevin.st Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 25 2017 at 12:28pm
Yeah, you do need more live rock!  I like the 1 pound of rock per gallon concept.  

What do you mean by your dosing could be inhibiting your coral health?  From what I can see, there isnt much coral in there.  Even small, sporadic water changes should be sufficient.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote kmtfishchannel Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 25 2017 at 1:11pm
We don't have much coral but our Alk is not the best so we are working on keeping it level and stable. Do you think just a 5 gallon water change a week would be enough? We use Red Sea Coral Pro Salt.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote kevin.st Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 25 2017 at 1:21pm
Yes, a five gallon WC/week is more than enough with your coral load.  

In my opinion, your tank looks fine.  You just need more coral, rock and fish!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote bstuver Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 25 2017 at 2:12pm
I will have some extra rock once I get my tank taken down and Im in provo but I don't know how soon that will be...
Jackie Stuver

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote kmtfishchannel Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 25 2017 at 2:17pm
Thanks, I'll deffently get more live rock and then work on more coral and fish.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mark Peterson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 27 2017 at 7:20am
Thanks for the pics and answers to my questions. A couple of things you said indicate to me that there is a need to update your knowledge base:

 "...a few corals are having some issue but that i'm sure is due to a lack of proper dosing that we are working on correcting slow but surely."
-  In my experience, dosing can bring Alk, Ca and Mg into the acceptable ranges within a day or two. No need to go slow.
What are the Alk, Ca and Mg levels currently Question
-  How can you be "sure the [coral issue] is due to a lack of proper dosing"? The tank looks to me like a 2 month old with the typical problems of not using any live stuff to get it going and using rock which takes a long time to start growing, rock which may in fact be causing the "coral issues". As suggested recently in several other threads about tanks that were set up with dead rock, Poly-Bio-Marine Poly-Filter adsorbs the strange, coral inhibiting pollutants released by dead rock.

  "[the tanks] Alk is not the best so we are working on keeping it level and stable. Do you think just a 5 gallon water change a week would be enough? We use Red Sea Coral Pro Salt. "
-  To be honest, in that tank, I cannot imagine any of the parameters actually fluctuating much at all. There is very little in there that would be eating Alk, Ca and Mg. Coral Pro salt has extra of those components anyway, which would say to me that dosing may not even be necessary. Again it would be good to reveal what the those levels are, so we can advise what steps to take. 
-  5 gals a week! What? With so few living organisms needing it, that tank, the way it is right now, would do just fine on 5 gal water changes every 2 months. Any more than that would be, in my experience, a waste of salt.

Remember this question from my last post?
 "What live organisms (LR, LS, Macroalgae, etc.) were added in setup and since?" 
-  My opinion, from looking at the tank pics and reading what you have said, is that the original idea of this thread is spot on. Adding some actual Lively LR could be the major solution as long as a pad of Poly-Filter was also added. My opinion at this point is that those two things should make this tank take off like a rocket, but I need to know the current Alk, Ca and Mg levels to be certain.

Aloha.
Mark  Hug
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote kmtfishchannel Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 27 2017 at 7:48pm
My Ca last time I tested was about 440ppm, the Alk was about 8.1dkh (after bringing it up from 5dkh), and I don't remember what my Mg is I know it was in the recommend levels from what I have read. (my record chart is not with me atm) 

My Main goal right now is to get more live rock in the tank. Is there any point in having macroalgae in the display tank? My sump is filled with cheto and some other red algae. Enough I felt like my skimmer is not doing anything any more. My skimmer has been pulling really good skimmate out for months but now that my refuge is getting so thick the skimmer was not pulling out much of anything. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mark Peterson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 28 2017 at 12:03pm
That's right, Macroalgae in the display is unnecessary at this time because it's growing so well, doing it's job in the Refugium. Little or no skimate is common, it's what we expect to happen in a system like this. Thumbs Up 
If a Tang is wanted, I suggest growing a stand of Caulerpa for a month or two before adding the Tang. They love to graze all day and Caulerpa usually fills the need.

Be sure to periodically harvest 1/4 - 1/3 of the Refugium Algae. Otherwise it can get so packed that it stops working. 
Also use AC (Activated Carbon) to remove the toxins produced by all the marine organisms. 
AC and Macroalgae do the job of a skimmer. Smile

I believe you have the Alk, Ca and Mg well done now. Here is the crazy story of how I learned about those parameters back in the beginning days of the reefkeeping hobby.
Around 1996-1997 I wanted to see how long my tank, started in 1993, could go without a water change or anything. At around 18 months without a W/C I was having trouble keeping Hermits and Snails alive. I assumed a big old Six-line Wrasse was eating them. Unfortunately, I learned too late that I could test Alkalinity and Ca. I had traded my favorite beautiful Six-line to the LFS just days before! Alk had fallen to something like 3.5 dKH. Can't remember what Ca was, but it was low. I learned my lesson the hard way. Embarrassed

If, in the near future, anything still seems to be having issues, one Poly-Filter pad, used for 1-2 months should take care of it. Thumbs Up

Is the red algae in the Refugium like Cotton Candy? If so, that's Asperigopsis. It can become a real nuisance. One Pacific Turbo Snail will eat it up. This is PT Snail breeding season. Because of this, the ones transported in to the LFS die too quickly at this time of year, but I have several and am willing to let one go.

I also have extra LR and it's very lively. I'll be back in Murray next week. Let me know if you want to check it out. My number is 808-345-1049.

Aloha,
Mark  Hug

Here is a 1998 pic of the 75 gal tank mentioned above.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote kmtfishchannel Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 28 2017 at 1:39pm
I'll be getting in contact with you once I have some money haha...

Also the red Algae looks more like the flames of a fire then stringy or like cotten candy. I do have some of this I recently added to the display will tangs eat it? Or should I remove it? 

I was told this was a good algae is this true? I can post a photo if needed. Big smile


Edited by kmtfishchannel - August 28 2017 at 1:41pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mark Peterson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 28 2017 at 2:09pm
Is it Dragons Breath Algae (Halymenia durvillei)?



It's an awesome decorative algae that both Pacific Turbo Snails and Tangs will completely devour. Caulerpa in the display also gets devoured when a Tang is added, but not so quickly. Caulerpa generally grows quicker and is more available among hobbyists.

Money? I often give live stuff away and when I do sell it, I only ask for a few bucks. Feel free to come see what I have.

Aloha,
Mark  Hug
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mark Peterson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 28 2017 at 2:30pm
Is it Dragons Breath Algae?



This is an awesome decorative algae, a favorite of both Tangs and Pacific Turbo Snails. I would not put a Tang in that tank right now anyway. It needs to mature more. 

If the Dragons Breath is doing well, I would want to keep it growing so for algae control I'd use Snails like Astrea, Margarita and Cerith.

Money? I usually give a lot of live stuff away for free, even corals, but I won't refuse a little money. Wink 
Feel free to come visit and pick up some stuff. I will be back in Murray next Monday to Thursday. My number is 808-345-1049.

Aloha,
Mark  Hug


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Teknik777 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 29 2017 at 12:05pm
Your tank is looking sweet! If it were me I would cure some dry rock myself then you know that it is bug and pest free(then add it to the tank once cured). I personally don't like the look of algae in the tank. Why take up real-estate for algae when you could have coral? Happy to help with any questions or talking reefs.
90 Gallon Mixed Reef, MP40, skimz 121, korallin S1502, DYI LED/ T5 fixture, and a ton of TLC!



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