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Ibnzmonkey

Macro Lighting Requirements

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Hello,

I am going to be starting a 125g 6' lagoonal reef system. It will be filled with some encrusting corals such as Xenia, GSP, and some of the Euphyllia species of coral (Hammer, Torch, Frogspawn). Low to moderate corals will be the name of the game here. There will also be various macros as well to fill in the gaps.

The problem im encountering is that I'm not too well versed in macro algaes. My current lighting consists of three 120w full spectrum LED fixtures that are about 10" above the water line with 90* optics. I know too powerful of lighting will cause some of the more sensitive species of macro to go sexual.

My question is, what kinds of algae can I keep in a medium lit tank system? I can dim the lights and mix them to produce more of a 10k look instead of the 14k+ that most people use.

My goal is to recreate something like this below. Not ultimately word for word, but more or less what I'm going after.

090624FTS.jpg

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Subsea will probably chime in soon once he sees this post. This stuff is right up his alley.

-Ty

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http://marineplantbook.com/marinebookindex.htm

This is the best common sense link that I have found on macro.

I have several different species that I am cultivating in my product line. Come out and visit me. With respect to your LED broad spectrum lighting, it would not be my choice for macro growth. By dimming down your blue spectrum to simulate 10K overall appearance, you provide nothing extra for the macro. You only are removing the blue spectrum. Try several diffrerent species and see how they do. I use T5 fixtures with a 1:1 ratio of actinic with 5400K growout bulbs.

Patrick

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http://marineplantbook.com/marinebookindex.htm

This is the best common sense link that I have found on macro.

I have several different species that I am cultivating in my product line. Come out and visit me. With respect to your LED broad spectrum lighting, it would not be my choice for macro growth. By dimming down your blue spectrum to simulate 10K overall appearance, you provide nothing extra for the macro. You only are removing the blue spectrum. Try several diffrerent species and see how they do. I use T5 fixtures with a 1:1 ratio of actinic with 5400K growout bulbs.

Patrick

I was under the impression that algae grow best under the warmer color scales?

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As far as LED goes, cool white is closest to what macro want. However, they want other spectrum also. This is where my knowledge of LED is insufficient to guide you.

Getting back to your original statement, intense light will not make macro go sexual. It will bleach macro similar to coral given too much light. In the case of the red macro Gracilaria Hayi, it is dark burgundy under subdued lighting below 100PAR. Under 1000W MH at 250 PAR it is more red. After 2 days under natural sunlight with PAR values above 800 the yellow orange color predominates indicating accelerated growth.

Patrick

post-766-0-76280100-1367248676_thumb.jpg

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so how do you tell if your Macro is going sexual? Ask it out a date?

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Try it, it may work.

In the case of green macroalgae, particularly, the fast growing Calurpea, the tips will be clear to opaque when they are growing fast. When the tips are white, beware, it is getting ready to go sexual. The event is for self preservation as the DNA spores are released into the water. This happens due to a stress event. In most cases in our reef tanks, if it is pushed with intense lighting, but nutrients are low, it will go sexual.

Happy reefing,

Patrick

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So it's best to keep a lagoonal tank a bit "dirty" when it comes to nutrients or orgnaics in the water column?

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So it's best to keep a lagoonal tank a bit "dirty" when it comes to nutrients or orgnaics in the water column?

I'd think you could argue that anything with filter feeders probably likes it dirty.

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Macro in the sump. Probably Caulerpa Palpisodes and one or two others. Palpisodes mainly. Macro area is 32" long, and 12" wide, so I'm going with 24" fixtures. Water depth is 12". Lights 5" off of water. What lighting is my best choice:

  • 4 bulb T5 24"
  • 2 bulb T5 24"
  • 2 bulb T8 24"
  • 32 LED fixture (white blue mix) w/ 1 or 2 T8 24"

I have two of the T8 from old freshwater tanks and the LED fixture from a de-comissioned marine tank. If I could reuse them then great. If not, the T5 fixtures are cheap enough. Looks are not a consideration as this will not be visible.

Thinking of 4500-6500k bulbs and maybe mixing in one bulb with more red spectrum in it.

Opinions of the above are solicited both on fixtures and bulbs.

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Zane,

If heat is not an issue, four T5 bulbs at 6500 kelvin.

In the case of florescent lighting, it is true full spectrum lighting, not so with LED. Depending on the LED fixture with respect to spectrum, macro may not do well. I was not satisfied with cool white and royal blue mix.

Patrick

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