Chili Coral and Yellow Fiji Leather and General Help


New member
Let me just say that even though I've done this for two intense years.. I still consider myself a beginner.

Anyway, as this is one of my favorite corals ever (chili) I'm pretty dedicated to it, but even after moving it to it's very own dark cave, I'm still not getting results. I've had it for months, but I just can't get the little vampire-reject to bite....(sorry had to throw that in, i have a bizarre sense of humor)

I never see it feeding, and to top it off there's this weird greyish brownish crap that's on it almost kind of mossy, that I just can't get rid of even if I try to blow it off like I do sand on corals. Also, it seems like the polyps are opening behind it and under it towards the back. All I see is "stubble" , just a teensy bit of orange polyps in a teensy area and they don't look like the pictures. So that's how I assume that it's not healthy.

Also my yellow fiji is slightly brown?!

And my coralline algae seems to be dying off.

Tested water: no detectable nitrates/nitrites/ammonia, pH is good...I don't get it. Salinity 1.023-1.024, change water every week.

I'm stumped.


New member
Also check your Phosphate. Sounds like its a little algae starting to me and higher phosphates inhibit coral growth. I think its anything over .25 if i remember right.
Can you take a photo of your chili coral? Are you spot-feeding it? Being non-photosynthetic, they require quite a bit of attention to remain healthy.

What are you using for source water for your water changes and topoff? What lighting do you have other the tank? What other livestock? Other equipment?

Also.... Phosphate inhibits coraline growth. Not sure how high that has to be tho

Extremely high - like high enough to be toxic to the rest of the livestock in a tank. Coraline actually feeds off phosphate, and requires it to grow - albeit at very low levels. If coraline is receeding, it's more likely because of a shortage of calcium, carbon, or lighting.


New member
yes i target feed it... here's my stats.
75 gallon,

compact fl. 512 watts, change water everyweek,

mix of a wet/dry and a canister filter with a crappy protein skimmer( the worst part of the filter, really) its the pro series one from tom aquarium.

nitrates/nitrites/ammonia none
phosphate is a little high (thanks for the tip!) but I add calcium and now I'm adding magnesium since I heard that phophate depletes that.
salinity: 1.023-1.024 (I'm gradually lowering it to 1.023, isn't that better. though I keep getting contradicting opinions about that fact does anyone else get sick of hearing three different things from three different people that all contradict each other?! who do you believe?)

temperature:75.5 f

two osc clowns (mean little suckers, too) one black clown, one green mandarin dragonette, 5 peppermint shrimp, 3 fire shrimp, 1 pistol shrimp, one neon goby, one yellow watchman goby, one lawnmower blenny, one naso tang, one blue tang, one yellow tang, coral beauty.


Premium Member
Couple of things that I see,

Temp is a bit low, I keep mine at 78-83*

Salinity should be at 1.265

And you seem to have a very high bio-load, which could be effecting the water quality.
A few thoughts:

1) That's a ton of fish in a tank that small, and a huge bioload for filtration you're unsure about. Many people see 75 gallon tanks as marginal for a single tang, much less three. Granted it's possible to keep them in there, but won't be ideal. (Don't mean to sound like I'm lecturing you, just sharing what is commonly accepted in the hobby.)

2) Are you testing for calcium and magnesium? Also, pH and alkalinity? pH, alkalinity, and calcium form a symbiotic triangle (magnesium to a lesser extent). If you're screwing with any one of the three, you had better be keeping an eye on the other two! There are lots of good articles out there about the balance between these three parameters:

A good list here:

3) Salinity - your values are fine. Natural seawater is around 1.026.


New member
here is the chili coral


New member
well thanks for the help so far, not to seem like I'm blaming my mom, but she really stocked "my" aquarium for me, and then left me to take care of it. how kind.


New member
not so good...that's what i've been worried about. any tips? how do you move your powerheads around and how do you keep the intake part above water, I have issues dealing with the lid.
Sorry, I'm confused - the intake part on what?

Powerheads can work completely submerged and should be easy to move around - most come with suction cup mounts you can place anywhere in the tank. If that isn't working, several vendors sell magnetic mounts (or you can make your own).


New member
Everyone has their own opinon on salinity. If you have corals its better to keep it on the upper end. I like to keep mine at 1.025. Also what is your phosphate at exactly? Im still thinkin thats it (or at least part of the problem) along with maybe some flow in the tank. Might wanna try some phosphate media or pads or sponge or something to help bring it down. GFO media works good. I battled phosphates for a long time and its not fun. Also had no purple coraline growth and now its starting to come around since i got my nitrate and phosphate down from being really high. I also don't believe phosphate needs to be super high to inhibit coraline growth. Even says it on the back of my bottle of purple-up :)


New member
yeah i know, what the heck! that does not look like my coral, even when I first got it. my mom ordered me one for my christmas present because she knows how much i admire them and she said it said it was a chili coral. what the heck could it possibly be, if not a chili coral?
i feel like a coral abuser right now, but seriously, I DEFINITELY do not neglect them. far from it, i spend tons of time on the reef.


New member
My chili coral looks just like yours deflated, since the day I got it. Posted something yesterday in the soft coral forum. I tried moving to a darker part of he tank but it doesn't seem to open up till my moonlights are on. I'm interest to see what people think.