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Tank Conversion after Coral Death- Low PO4

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  • Tank Conversion after Coral Death- Low PO4

    Hello Everyone,

    I am considering converting my 150 gallon tank to Zeovit and have a few questions. As some background, this tank was setup in October of 2021 and was an upgrade from an almost three year old 45 gallon tank. All the live rock was transferred to the new tank, but since the new tank is so much larger a significant amount of new rock was also added. Bioload was very low as I only had four fish in the 45 gallon and I have been adding fish slowly to this tank. I am experiencing a ton of issues with this tank from what I believe to be nutrient related. I almost bottomed out my phosphates and did not have any other nutrition supplementation. I am looking at a 90-100% loss of coral in this tank. Hence why I am considering for all intents and purposes starting this tank over with a new system. I want something stable and that can produce results. I like the philosophy of heavy in heavy out and Zeovit has caught my attention. The tank runs an Apex for monitoring and control and I have automatic water changes setup through the Neptune DOS. I change out approximately 1.5 gallons a day for a 30% water change monthly.

    My one concern for converting to Zeovit is how this will play out with my already ultra low PO4 levels. I am currently dosing PO4 daily for it to even be detectable on a Hanna ULR Phosphorus checker. Nitrate has been climbing to 10 as I have increased feedings to the point of multiple cubes a day as well as Red Sea AB+ coral food. PO4 usually measures between 0.003-0.018; I dose Brightwell NeoPhos to increase to 0.03 daily but the tank consumes that much PO4, or it is binding to rock, within 24 hours. How can I setup a tank conversion with a system that is already PO4 limited and suffering as a result without completely stripping the water of PO4 and further impacting corals?

    1. Gross water volume of your complete system (incl. sump etc.) - US gallons / UK gallons / liter
    150 US gallons
    2. Net water volume (incl. sump etc.) - US gallons / UK gallons / liter
    193 gallons
    3. Are you using a CaCO2 reactor or other technique
    No; two part dosing
    4. Are you using a PO4 reactor (how long, how long ago, etc.)
    No
    5. Are you using Ozone
    No
    6. Are you using UV
    No
    7. What skimmer are you using (type, rated water volume)
    Reef Octopus Regal 200INT
    8. What are your actual PO4 and NO3 levels
    PO4 .0012 average, NO3 10
    9. What are your actual Ca, Alk and Mg levels
    Alk 8.0, Calcium 420, Magnesium 1350
    10. What filtration method do you use (refugium, DSB, Miracle Mud, etc.)
    Filter socks, skimmer
    11. Type of light (Watt, color temp, how old, etc.)
    Kessil A360X & T5 hybrid; 4 A360X & 4 54watt T5's
    12. What corals do you keep
    Mixed Reef, SPS dominant. LPS include Duncan, Acan, Hammers, Candy Cane
    13. Tissue color (light or dark)
    Not really applicable as corals dying. LPS shows extremely light coloration to the point of being unhealthy
    14. How long has the tank been running
    October 2021, previous tank transferred from November 2018
    15. Why do you want to use the ZEOvit system
    Create a stable ecosystem for proven coral growth
    16. Any supplemental dosing (type, amount, why, etc.)
    Two Little Fishies Acropower & Red Sea AB+. Supplement coral foods due to low PO4 and coral mortality.
    BRS Two Part Soda Ash & Calcium, Magnesium as needed

    17. Live rock (how much, how old, etc.)
    Three year old live rock from previous tank and new rock for this tank. Approximately 100-120lbs?
    Live rock in sump with reverse lighting schedule to help pH, Xenia growing on rock
    10lbs live ocean rock from Gulf of Mexico
    3lbs live sand from Pacific Ocean

    18. Any present problems
    Yes, almost complete coral mortality due to what I believe is too low PO4 with not enough coral nutrition input
    19. Problem description (tissue loss tips, tissue loss base, diatom bloom, algae, etc.)
    Started as burnt tips then SPS proceeded to RTN and STN. Brown diatom light algae growing on sandbed
    20. What test kit do you use (how old, recently switched, etc.)
    Hanna ULR Phosphorus, Hanna HR Nitrate, Hanna Alkalinity, Salifert Calcium, Salifert Potassium
    21. Present dosing, amounts and intervals (ZEOvit, ZEObak, ZEOfood, ZEOstart, ZEOspur2, etc.)
    BRS Two Part automatic doser for Trident controlled dosing, Magnesium as needed, once weekly Two Little Fishies Acropower, Daily Red Sea AB+
    22. Other water parameters and water stability (salinity, temp, etc.)
    35ppt, 78 degrees F, ORP ranges 390-420
    23. Which salt brand do you use
    Red Sea Blue Bucket




  • #2
    A zeovit reactor would help with the high Nitrate. dosing supplements is no substitute to having a healthy fish population.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by Bugger View Post
      A zeovit reactor would help with the high Nitrate. dosing supplements is no substitute to having a healthy fish population.
      Agreed for sure. Slowly working to increase my fish population. Now have 11 fish with four more on the way, and plans for six more wrasses.

      I suppose the heart of my question is, id it worth trying Zeovit in a tank currently suffering from low nutrients?

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by U_Reef21 View Post

        Agreed for sure. Slowly working to increase my fish population. Now have 11 fish with four more on the way, and plans for six more wrasses.

        I suppose the heart of my question is, id it worth trying Zeovit in a tank currently suffering from low nutrients?
        Your already having nitrate issue's and with more and more fish it will get harder to control without the zeolite.

        How much phosphate are you adding.

        THe corals should live fine on having phosphate zero out everyday.

        Comment


        • #5
          Welcome to ZeoVit.com !

          I do also think that the bad condition of your corals has nothing to do with the actual nutrient situation. You have mention that TN started from the tips which is typically for any kind of harmful substances. Have you had those issues since the beginning after you setup the new system or was this something which has started slowly after some time ?

          Can you show us some pictures of your sump, technical equipment and a fill tank picture ?

          Would be also interesting to know which kind of rocks you have used additional to the old ones you have transferred for the new system.

          Have you already done a ICP test ?

          G.Alexander

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Bugger View Post

            Your already having nitrate issue's and with more and more fish it will get harder to control without the zeolite.

            How much phosphate are you adding.

            THe corals should live fine on having phosphate zero out everyday.
            I am adding enough phosphate daily to reach 0.03 on my Hanna ULR Phosphorus checker. The amount varies by day. Last night I only had to add 1mL. The most I’ve ever had to add was 15mL. I test daily and do the calculations.

            Comment


            • #7
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              Originally posted by G.Alexander View Post
              Welcome to ZeoVit.com !

              I do also think that the bad condition of your corals has nothing to do with the actual nutrient situation. You have mention that TN started from the tips which is typically for any kind of harmful substances. Have you had those issues since the beginning after you setup the new system or was this something which has started slowly after some time ?

              Can you show us some pictures of your sump, technical equipment and a fill tank picture ?

              Would be also interesting to know which kind of rocks you have used additional to the old ones you have transferred for the new system.

              Have you already done a ICP test ?

              G.Alexander
              The tank did well immediately after the transfer, no issues and corals were growing. It started shortly after, around December is when I noticed the first Acropora with tissue necrosis at the tips. The situation just got progressively worse from there and is now even impacted my LPS.

              Used dry Marco rock mainly to build the large aquascape. I do have 10lbs of live ocean rock in the sump that I purchased and has flown in overnight submerged in water.

              I did do an ICP in December and everything came back okay, no issues or contaminants were found.

              Click image for larger version

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              Comment


              • #8
                Hi I have in the past tried to chase phosphate numbers and have killed corals. 15ml in a tank that is functioning will strip out phosphate fast. Its unatural.

                In the end I decided to add only 1 drop of phosphate per 25 gallons of water daily.

                I guess the question is were you adding phosphate at the time when your corals started melting.

                Adding reef energy will add phosphate and nitrate to a tank but is much better to run on dosing pump that spreads out the dosage over the entire day

                Comment


                • #9
                  I started dosing phosphate after my corals declined and my phosphate levels were trending toward bottoming out.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Oh I see. Do you know the par value on your lights.

                    YOu said the tips were burnt. Could it be your lights.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Acro’s averaged at the lowest 250 par, highest 460. Most were in the middle of that range. Lighting is a T5 hybrid with four Kessil A360X.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        How many fish did you have when things went downhill?

                        How often did you feed?

                        How long has this tank been set up for?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          To answer your question there are plenty of zeovit tanks with high po4 and low po4.

                          but we don't think it was lack of phosphate that killed your corals as our tanks ran at 0 phosphate and we still grew corals.

                          You saw perhaps a decline in your coral so you dosed phosphate to elevate levels which only stressed things out even more.

                          I have personally seen the effects of dosing phosphate to my tank and the aftermath was bad. I lost some of my sps.

                          Take a step back and try what has worked for most people; zeovit combined with a healthy well fed fish population.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Had only seven fish at the time. Two clowns, Diamond goby, yellow coris wrasse, Tomini and yellow tangs, copperband butterfly, and bangaii cardinal. Recently added three more two weeks ago- Carpenter and linespot flasher wrasses and a magnificent Foxface.

                            I feed fairly heavy, at least three feedings broken up throughout the day. The tank was transferred from my previous system on October 2nd.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I am very interested in converting to a full Zeovit setup. How should I go about doing this though on an existing tank that is experiencing issues such as mine?

                              I was looking at the Avast Marine Vibe 2L reactor as it will fit my under tank space the best, and I like being able to automatically agitate the Zeolites. I believe the 2L would be a sufficient size- 1L Zeolites per 100 gallons. So I would need 1.5L total Zeolites.
                              Last edited by U_Reef21; 02-21-2022, 04:03 PM. Reason: Added detail.

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