Coraline algea Growth Tricks

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Coraline algea Growth Tricks

Postby Gonzo on Mon Mar 05, 2012 1:16 pm

I am looking to replenish my tank with coraline algea. Had purchased 15Lbs of some great looking rocks full of purlpe red coraline algea and little by little they are dying off. Not sure why. Skimmers and filters working fine. My water test come out fine. Just not having any luck to keep up growing. Running MET HAL 15k pair with moon lights. Just looking for advice and direction i am lost.
Thanks in advance
Is my lighting wrong ?
Do i use commercial products like Purple Up?
Sure there are many other questions that i am not seeing.
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Re: Coraline algea Growth Tricks

Postby Socratic Monologue on Mon Mar 05, 2012 2:40 pm

Maintain calcium 400-450ppm, alk 8-12 dkh, iodine .06ppm, magnesium 1350-1400ppm. Don't keep any urchins, and check to see that you have no chitons as hitchhikers; both these eat coralline. And no Moorish Idols. :)

Purple-Up sometimes "works" in spite of being a bit of a snake-oil sort of product. There are far more effective and cheaper (ridiculously cheaper) ways to maintain ca, alk and iodine, though. Calcium chloride, sodium carbonate/bicarbonate, and Lugol's are so cheap they are nearly free, and work well for lots of people.
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Re: Coraline algea Growth Tricks

Postby Tonis56 on Mon Mar 05, 2012 5:49 pm

Socratic Monologue wrote:Purple-Up sometimes "works" in spite of being a bit of a snake-oil sort of product. There are far more effective and cheaper (ridiculously cheaper) ways to maintain ca, alk and iodine, though. Calcium chloride, sodium carbonate/bicarbonate, and Lugol's are so cheap they are nearly free, and work well for lots of people.


I have found the complete opposite to be true about Purple Up. While using purple up I am constantly scraping small pieces of coraline off my glass. Also this is on a tank that is less than 3 months old and I do not dose any kind of calcium. While purple up is not exactly cheap, I find my self hardly having to use it and greatly extending the life of my bottle.
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Re: Coraline algea Growth Tricks

Postby shoota on Mon Mar 05, 2012 9:43 pm

Have you checked phosphates? Phosphates will inhibit coraline growth. And other nuisance algae will also inhibit growth. It may take months for it to spread... even with the correct parameters. And there are many of different kinds of coraline, with some growing faster than others.. try scraping some of it and letting it get in the rocks and such... heard that helps it spread too.
Last edited by shoota on Mon Mar 05, 2012 9:46 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Coraline algea Growth Tricks

Postby jelly on Mon Mar 05, 2012 9:57 pm

i scrape my coraline algea and it dose help to spread it. i have great grown cause of it. as for purple up i have heard its a snake oil and all it really is, is calcium in a bottle. i wouldnt use it just keep all your stuff in check like the others said and you will get it to gown. it just takes time.
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Re: Coraline algea Growth Tricks

Postby Gonzo on Tue Mar 06, 2012 7:48 am

Thanks to all for the info.
I will keep doing what i am and see if in a few months things have changed.
Thanks again and in advance for any further info
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Re: Coraline algea Growth Tricks

Postby Slipstick Tippin on Tue Mar 06, 2012 2:36 pm

I know urchins eat coraline but don't they also spread it?
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Re: Coraline algea Growth Tricks

Postby Gonzo on Wed Mar 07, 2012 9:38 am

If that is true maybe i should look into that as well. Anyone else have that same experience?

Thanks in advance
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Re: Coraline algea Growth Tricks

Postby shoota on Wed Mar 07, 2012 9:47 am

While I've heard that, in my opinion, you can spread the same spores by scraping a little of it off and letting it spread. Pretty sure both methods are not "proven" and I wouldn't risk getting a rock boring urchin just to spread some coralline... just my 2 cents.
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Re: Coraline algea Growth Tricks

Postby hickko187 on Wed Mar 07, 2012 12:34 pm

i had great luck with kent marine's purple tech
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Re: Coraline algea Growth Tricks

Postby MM on Wed Mar 07, 2012 1:01 pm

I would suggest more frequent water changes before one of the coraline growth products and make sure your bulbs are fresh, more bang for your buck with more water changes - Mark
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Re: Coraline algea Growth Tricks

Postby meisen on Mon Mar 26, 2012 3:48 pm

Well a long while back several folks experimented with growing it. There used to be a thread on RC about it (probably one of many) from around 2000-2001 where a half dozen or so guys were trying to maximize it. Basically the common wisdom was that a tank was ready for acros when a tank had healthy and strong coraline algae growth. So then coraline became an end unto itself lol.

Here is what I remember of what worked best:

1. Actinic/bluer lights seem to promote the dark purple strain the best, the lighter pink and green stuff grows under halides better as do the branching forms.
2. Lots of strong water flow
3. Low nutrients, good skimmer (might be oversaturating CO2 jumps to mind now)
4. High Mg levels, high alk levels and high calcium levels as stated above. Almost can't get the alk too high at least until you crash it lol.
5. Adding scrapings from several tanks that have various strains of coraline. There are lots of species, some thrive in strong light, others in lower light so having a variety will help get high coverage.
6. Tanks with Ca reactors seem to generally grow it quite well. The guy who did the best in the thread I think was running a double chamber reactor.
7. Now that you are growing tons of coraline your mineral needs are going to be quite high!!! It does actually compete for minerals with corals.....

Now that I am not specifically trying to grow it I find it grows pretty well for me. Tanks that meet the above criteria, other tanks, doesn't seem to matter.
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Re: Coraline algea Growth Tricks

Postby O&J'sdad on Mon Mar 26, 2012 3:54 pm

I would love to find a way to not grow it. I get sick of cleaning it off the back and sides of my tank. It is really hard to clean a tank that is 3' front to back.
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Re: Coraline algea Growth Tricks

Postby meisen on Mon Mar 26, 2012 4:08 pm

O&J'sdad wrote:I would love to find a way to not grow it. I get sick of cleaning it off the back and sides of my tank. It is really hard to clean a tank that is 3' front to back.


LOL a hard problem to have :)

Urchins sort of work....but they also spread it as they eat it. I've seen a few longspines demolish coraline-infested tanks. But they arent going to do much on your glass. And they are also apt to demolish corals and rockwork once they get large.

Short of dropping your Mg and Ca I have nothing for you.
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Re: Coraline algea Growth Tricks

Postby Jake on Tue Mar 27, 2012 12:59 pm

From my experience coraline doesn't grow well under strong lighting. Low actinic lighting will grow coraline like mad. But then your corals suffer... It's a trade off. Maybe you can get it to go in the strong lighting with the purple up..? Never really had any success with that stuff other than watching my corals shrink up when I put it in there. I would use a good quality salt (Red Sea Coral Pro is Great!) and RO water and forget about your coraline dreams :)
Patience is bitter, but its fruit is sweet.
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