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Sumps and macro algae?


tom2

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Does anyone here keep macro algae running in there sps dominate tank or mixed reef? Any plus to that besides the nitrates lowering? And do you have to have a sump to grow and leave lights on all the time or is it day time night time kind of thing?

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I have a mixed reef with cheato in the sump. I don't really know if it helps nitrates all that much but it is home to a million micro brittle stars, pods, and little feather dusters. It's absolutely stuffed full of them. I like the diversity adds to the system. You can do whatever with the lights down there. Lots of people like to run a reverse light cycle on the sump, basically have the lights on down there all night, then dark when the display lights are on. It can help keep the pH up during the night.

There are other kinds of macroalgae you can grow too, not just cheato. You can grow kinds that tangs and other herbivores like to eat and feed it to them. Nothing really eats cheato, but cheato won't go sexual on you. That's where the algae goes white and all goopy and clouds up your system and can drop the oxygen levels.

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I have an SPS tank with macro algae in the sump. I run a PAR LED bulb over it to run at night in order to help offset the pH and oxygen swings that occur at night. Not only does it help remove nutrients, but it helps keep my micro fauna populations strong and thriving. I can always find pods in my sump macro algae. I use a ball of chaeto for my main biological nutrient export. I also have dragons breath growing out in there and hopefully it will one day completely replace the chaeto. I'm a big believer in natural filtration and macro algae are a great way to recycle nutrients and feed little critters that help benefit every life form in the tank.

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I had a dark sump before incorporating a refugium in the 150g. I thought it was more hassle than beneficial and decided to go dark again in the new tank. I, personally, didn't notice any increase in pods between the two methods, but the tangs did love the fresh algae. Unfortunately, the noninvasive stuff doesn't grow fast enough to provide more than an occasional snack.

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I don't think you have to worry about either of those. Just prune out any pieces that look white, clear, or otherwise dead. Dragon's breath is sure beautiful!

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Keeping multiple macroalgae won't cause a sexual episode. Chaetomorpha will crowd out the Dragon's Breath and kill it though. It has a higher uptake than most macroalgae, which starves out competition. It also blocks the light because the strands are opaque.

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The reason people keep Chaetomorpha sp. in their refugium is because it has a higher nutrient uptake than most macroalgae and it's easily maintained in dense spaces. It's near bulletproof, it doesn't attach to rock and you can keep it under cheap lighting. It's like a sumo wrestler.

Dragon's Breath is a red macroalgae. It's thin, like Ulva sp,, and has a low nutrient uptake similar to corals. Most people keep this stuff as a display macroalgae because it's pretty. It's delicate, like a supermodel girlfriend.

Let's pretend that the sumo wrestler and the supermodel girlfriend are at a dining table with food dishes slowly trickling in from the kitchen. It's definitely possible to keep the red and the green in the same tank, but you'll have to make sure that each one gets enough food because they have different appetites. At one point I had 12 different types of macroalgae in the same refugium but it required constant care.

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I keep chaeto and dragons breath in my sump together and what Sascha said is true, the chaeto grows much much faster than the dragons breath and consumes more nutrients doing so. I attached the dragons breath to a piece of rock and have it in an area where it can get direct light away from the chaeto. It's definitely more ornamental than a nutrient export machine like the chaeto.

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The reason people keep Chaetomorpha sp. in their refugium is because it has a higher nutrient uptake than most macroalgae and it's easily maintained in dense spaces. It's near bulletproof, it doesn't attach to rock and you can keep it under cheap lighting. It's like a sumo wrestler.

Dragon's Breath is a red macroalgae. It's thin, like Ulva sp,, and has a low nutrient uptake similar to corals. Most people keep this stuff as a display macroalgae because it's pretty. It's delicate, like a supermodel girlfriend.

Let's pretend that the sumo wrestler and the supermodel girlfriend are at a dining table with food dishes slowly trickling in from the kitchen. It's definitely possible to keep the red and the green in the same tank, but you'll have to make sure that each one gets enough food because they have different appetites. At one point I had 12 different types of macroalgae in the same refugium but it required constant care.

Hilarious analogy man! [emoji23]
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