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My Sticks Need a Haircut


Wade

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My hair algae seems to be under control for the most part which is good. However, where it's out of control in in my birdsnest. It's completely engulfed it and if I use a brush to clean most of it out, it comes back within the next week because the hermits just won't venture in there. The only polyps left are on the few points sticking out of the top. Is it better at this point to just frag those tips and discard the rest? I've been battling the algae on this colony for several months. I hate to lose it (it's about a six inch round colony), but I'm not sure there's any other way at this point.

Suggestions?

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Following...my GSP has hair algae. I pull it (what i think is all of it) off but it grows right back. frustrating... I cant remove it either.. its growing on a base rock...angry.png

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In my opinion, if it gets that bad, it's probably time to frag off the tips or wherever there are still healthy tissue/polyps. It stinks, but it'll save you a lot of time and frustration.

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Do you have a picture? If the algae is growing on the rock and rising up through the colony, then you can save the coral by addressing the algae problem. If the tissue has receded and the algae is growing directly on the skeleton, then the algae will eventually choke out the coral. Fragging a piece might prevent a total loss if the colony can't be saved in time.

You could also use a peroxide dip to remove the algae. A 50/50 mixture of peroxide and tank water, for 1-2 minutes will kill the algae. If you need to, then you can do a follow-up dip in a week.

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The colony is sitting on a rock, but is not attached. The algae is only on the coral skeleton. I believe there is tissue loss, but the peroxide dip is worth a shot if it won't hurt the healthy tips. Thanks all for your advice.

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I'm reading a lot of mixed results using peroxide on sps corals. I regularly used it when my tank had algae problems, but a lot of people have posted problems. I apologize if I steered you wrongly, but it might be best to avoid it if you haven't done the dip already.

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What about just dipping the lower part of the skeleton where the algae is growing, and not let the healthy tissue get touched by it? I'd just frag it and start over if it were me though because I think you'll still end up with algae in there again eventually.

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In my experience hair algae only grown on dead coral. If it's that covered in hair algae frag it. And I recommend fixing the root cause of the hair algae as well.

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What about just dipping the lower part of the skeleton where the algae is growing, and not let the healthy tissue get touched by it? I'd just frag it and start over if it were me though because I think you'll still end up with algae in there again eventually.

I couldn't find any scientific studies, just my own experience and other hobbyists feedback. Hydrogen Peroxide kills all algae, even the zooxanthellae inside of the coral. If the concentration is too high or the length of dip is too long, then the HP kills the zooxanthellae inside of the skeleton as well. Peroxide is a common dip for soft corals and is a common treatment for parasite, bacterial and algae problems. Some people dose it for various reasons. There are also a lot of factors individual to each tank. Dipping a coral that is too compromised could send it over the cliff, no matter what kind of dip you use. Just like Cliff said, algae will only grow on the skeleton once the tissue has receded. That's why I asked for a picture in my first post.

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Yeah, peroxide dip + SPS = bad idea.

Peroxide dosing in your whole tank at 1ml/10 gallons is great for fighting dinos, even if you have SPS.

That's been my experience at least.

My advice, like others before, cut the tips off and glue them all to a new frag plug. You'll have a new colony in no time sans the algae.

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Oh wow. That's not looking good. I would absolutely cut off the tips that are still alive. It's hard to tell from the picture, but it looks like many of the tips are already dead too.

That's going to be an algae magnet. Trying to save the colony is a loosing battle. Do you have strong flow hitting that area? It would help.

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I've got an MP40 at the other end of the tank so it gets a lot of flow, just not directly at it. I'm leaning your way. Some of the tips are still show good polyp extension some I'm just going to frag them off and discard the rest. Ugh.

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I would check you cal,mag,alk,ammonia,nitrate,nitrite, and phosphate. Once you check these post them. Almost guarantee they will provide the reason for both the dead coral and the algae. Sometimes it's a lighting issue, but 90% of the time it is a water issue. We're all here to help! Lets us know your parameters and I'm sure we can help you out before more die off. If you don't have the test kits let me know. I can bring mine over and check your water. Or you can take it to your LFS, but I don't trust them :/ let me know! Hope it turns out good.

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