Need some advice: tank crashing?

chunkylovah

New member
So I got a not so great case of THE illness and was physcially unable to maintain my tank for the last two months. It seemed like it was fine until i woke up one morning and all my montis had died (about two weeks ago). I checked my parameters nitrates through the roof i believe around 50ppm and phosphates non-existent. I had been dosing only 1 ml of carbon per day by hand. I thought maybe my carbon dosing mixed with phosphates being at 0 had caused the crash? So i stopped dosing my 1ml thinking it was making things worse. I should note everything else was fine. Alk, calc, salinity, everything was all still normal.

My tank is 43 gallons and 4 or 5 years old btw and usually is a low nutrient tank not by choice its just how its always been.

When i got healthy enough to move. I did 3x 10 gallon water changes over two weeks. Nitrates finally made it in the teens area. A bunch of brown dust was everywhere. 3 days ago coral were perking up. One of my montis showed a glimmer of hope.

I woke up this morning and theres been an algae bloom on my glass. About to do another water change and measure some stuff again.

Just trying to see if anyone has advice. Ive never had a tank crash. I think its a crash at least although my lps and softies look fine except for my favorite toadstool looks like its either on its way out or just being dramatic. My poor conch didnt make it too...

Just stressed out which isnt something i normally feel with my tank. Any advice is appreciated.

Thanks yall and sorry for the wall of text.
 

CAdreamin

New member
If you have anything you absolutely want to save I could hold them in my tank until you get yours in order.

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wsoldier

Member
If it were me I'd keep going with more water changes until you can get the nitrates down into single digits... but also feed frozen/phosphate-heavy foods to get the PO4 back up (probably won't take much depending on your bioload so don't overdo it). I suppose if you can get the PO4 up to a decent enough level where you can resume the carbon dosing, perhaps that's best in terms of returning to your normal habits.

Are you running a fuge or skimmer?
 

hersheyb

Active member
sounds like you might have a nutrient issue... maybe no3 and po4 unbalance... I would do a parameter check and go from there...

if your no3 is super high i would do a water change.. if your po4 is low or non existent.. i would dose some po4... i try to keep my po4 around .03-.05.. if you don't have anything to bring up the po4 you can always do a big feeding reefroids.
 

chunkylovah

New member
If it were me I'd keep going with more water changes until you can get the nitrates down into single digits... but also feed frozen/phosphate-heavy foods to get the PO4 back up (probably won't take much depending on your bioload so don't overdo it). I suppose if you can get the PO4 up to a decent enough level where you can resume the carbon dosing, perhaps that's best in terms of returning to your normal habits.

Are you running a fuge or skimmer?

Running a fuge and skimmer.

Do you have any frozen food recs for clownfish and a midas blenny? I was unaware that frozen food had a generally higher phosphate level compared to nitrate level.
 

chunkylovah

New member
sounds like you might have a nutrient issue... maybe no3 and po4 unbalance... I would do a parameter check and go from there...

if your no3 is super high i would do a water change.. if your po4 is low or non existent.. i would dose some po4... i try to keep my po4 around .03-.05.. if you don't have anything to bring up the po4 you can always do a big feeding reefroids.

Hey hershey, yeah ill give the reefroids a shot if my nitrates are back under control today. Im wondering if i need to start my carbon dosing back up asap or if it even is necessary at this point. I was dosing only 1ml and maintaining sub-5ppm. Also Im assuming all the bacterial die off has likely already occured and probably doesnt matter now?
 

hersheyb

Active member
If ur having low nutrient issues I would just stopped carbon dosing... if u have stopped dosing for some time now.. I wouldn't start again until you get everything back to normal.

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wsoldier

Member
As hersheyb suggested, the relative imbalance between NO4/PO4 (in addition to the drastic change) is problematic.

I've used ROD's frozen and also Hikari frozen mysis. I had a PO4 spike when I started feeding the latter daily. Just make sure you test at least once or twice a week.

I would start with another water change and the feeding and go from there. Good luck!
 

minus9

New member
LRS Reef Frenzy is awesome food and is what I primarily feed my fish/tanks. Whatever you choose to feed your fish, just feed them multiple times a day (smaller amounts). This whole feeding once a day or every other day is simply nonsense and does nothing to mitigate nutrient levels. Don't get caught up with chasing numbers, learn how to read your tank and go from there. Once your N & P are in certain ranges, then things will slowly turn around for the better. Go slow and simply feed more, but be prepared to export more. Heavy in / heavy out, that's the key.
 
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