Coral in trouble? Or just adjusting?

Discussion in 'New to Reefing' started by tizapolgar, Oct 3, 2006.

  1. tizapolgar

    tizapolgar Zymurgist

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    I recently added a green polyp coral to my set up, and it seemed to do great for the first couple of days. Over the last 16 hours or just, one by one the polyps have began to close and shrivel up. They've been receptive to feeding (brine shrimp and cut up bloodworms), and are under 65 watts of 50/50 light in a 10 gallon tank. Specs:

    8.2 pH
    >2.9 alkalinity
    0 ammonia
    .05 Nitrite
    <10 ppm Nitrate

    I know the nitrate shouldn't be there, but I attribute it to a mini-cycle after introducing the corals and a peppermint shrimp (to head off an aptaisia infestation).

    Here is a pic of the corals in question from a few days ago: look great, now many are closing up and shriveling away. Could it be an issue of current? They get a moderate amount of flow. My mushroom corals and colony polyps appear to be doing great, so i have no explanation for why these guys are dropping like flies. Any ideas?

    [​IMG]

    And, for fun, and tank shot from a few days back:

    [​IMG]
     
    tizapolgar, Oct 3, 2006
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  2. tizapolgar

    jhnrb

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    From the picture could not identify the coral you are talking about, but, due to the nearness to the yellow polyps, might be some of the problem. other than that at this time get your water parameters back in line and do not add anything else until your system matures a bit more. you should not be getting any nitrite unless your system is not yet matured enough. good luck with a better pic. or the name of the new coral i might venture additional information.
     
    jhnrb, Oct 3, 2006
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  3. tizapolgar

    bkv1997

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    I think he is refering to the yellow polyps... .that was a picture at the time he added it. I didn't have any good suggestions.
     
    bkv1997, Oct 3, 2006
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  4. tizapolgar

    tizapolgar Zymurgist

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    Yeah, sorry...I suppose they're more yellow. I have color issues, so they look more green to me (probably not to everyone else :mrgreen:

    Anyhow...after a day and some hours things seem to be much better. Tested my water again today and everything is back in line (8.2 pH, high alkalinity, 0 ammonia 0 nitrites...little bit of nitrates, but i'm relying on water changes bi-weekly, rather than a skimmer...not enough real estate in such a small set up...so i suppose that's rather normal).

    The polyps appear to be doing better...must have been in a bad mood yesterday. I think I just need more experience in determining when things are "dying:death: " and when things are "doing something I just don't yet understand..."

    heheh...it's a fine line :mrgreen:

    I AM hoping that some beneficial macro-algae that is beginning to grow on the live rock, and the eventual addition of some more coral will help with my minor nitrate situation eventually. Any particular species that would be especially useful?
     
    tizapolgar, Oct 4, 2006
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  5. tizapolgar

    jhnrb

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    Sorry for the confusion as it was all mine. glad to hear all is looking better. so when things dont look so good check water parameters 1st and adjust as needed to get things back in line as needed. good luck.
     
    jhnrb, Oct 4, 2006
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  6. tizapolgar

    chargedtuna

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    i've got a question....
    a coral guru man once told me that a spray bar that causes those bubbles that tizabolgar has effects the ph. i used to have a wavemaker that created those bubbles and he told me take off the hose that creates the air bubbles b/c of ph fluctuations. if this is true, which i have no reason to doubt him, could a change in ph cause the demise???
     
    chargedtuna, Oct 6, 2006
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  7. tizapolgar

    bkv1997

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    If anything more air in the water will keep the PH more constant, assuming the air in the room doesn't have an elevated CO2 level.

    Thoughout the day the part of the corals that use photosynthesis to produce food also take up Carbon Dioxide from the water that lowers the PH. At night the carbon dioxide levels are usually higher causing a downward ph swing at night.

    Many people go to great lengths to power their protein skimmer from outside air or do whatever to keep the water airated the best they possibly can to help lower CO2 levels in the aquarium, thus keeping the PH more constant.

    Let me know if this makes since. Attached below is an article from reefkeeping magazine that might explain this in more detail.

    Low pH: Causes and Cures by Randy Holmes-Farley - Reefkeeping.com

    Brandon
     
    bkv1997, Oct 6, 2006
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  8. tizapolgar

    bkv1997

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    With the above said I wouldn't personally use an aeration bar in the display itself. Bubbles in the actual display can irritate some corals especially sponges, etc.

    Just my .02
     
    bkv1997, Oct 6, 2006
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  9. tizapolgar

    tizapolgar Zymurgist

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    I've heard the same (that bubbles can irritate many corals). But, since my tank is very small (10g) and I don't have a sump I think that some display aeration is necessary. In the few months that the tank has been up I've found through experimentation that the bubble bar keeps the pH more stable and the alkalinity higher. Might be a coincidence, but one way or another it seems to be a case.

    I keep a close eye on my corals to make sure they don't appear irritated...so far, so good. If it became a problem, I'd remove the bubbles and find a better solution.

    And...everything seems great so far.

    Cheers!
     
    tizapolgar, Oct 11, 2006
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  10. tizapolgar

    bkv1997

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    yes more aeration will help stabalize PH, by minimizing the CO2 build up at night.

    Keep us posted.
     
    bkv1997, Oct 11, 2006
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