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Old 09/24/2020, 01:16 PM   #1
FTReef
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Location: Gulf Coast of Florida
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Surface Agitation

I'll start with the sad news....

I had a couple small fish that seemed totally fine go sluggish and die over night in the last couple days.

About a week ago I installed a new Icecap gyre as a second wave maker and while I was at it I cleaned and tuned pump 1 on my setup. In re-installing the pumps and trying to dial in the new controller I (now realize) I did not put the pumps back in position that allowed for much surface agitation.

I just today repositioned the gyres so there is a nice amount of surface agitation and it seems all the fish have perked up. Is it possible that I slowly suffocated the tank over the last few days but with a repositioning it shot an immediate dose of much needed O2 into the water? Is it likely that was the cause of my problem and would surface agitation really work that fast?

Tank parameters tested normal so I have no other explanation....


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Old 09/24/2020, 01:26 PM   #2
djryan2000
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Surface Agitation

Quote:
Originally Posted by FTReef View Post
I'll start with the sad news....

I had a couple small fish that seemed totally fine go sluggish and die over night in the last couple days.

About a week ago I installed a new Icecap gyre as a second wave maker and while I was at it I cleaned and tuned pump 1 on my setup. In re-installing the pumps and trying to dial in the new controller I (now realize) I did not put the pumps back in position that allowed for much surface agitation.

I just today repositioned the gyres so there is a nice amount of surface agitation and it seems all the fish have perked up. Is it possible that I slowly suffocated the tank over the last few days but with a repositioning it shot an immediate dose of much needed O2 into the water? Is it likely that was the cause of my problem and would surface agitation really work that fast?

Tank parameters tested normal so I have no other explanation....

It doesn’t take much to deplete the water of oxygen, especially if you have a lot of fish. One of my favorite YouTubers, Marc Levenson from Meelev’s Reef, always tells the story of how he turned off his pumps to feed the tank and forgot to turn them back on and returned to a tank with dead fish 8 hours later. Almost all of his fish suffocated and died.


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Old 09/24/2020, 02:04 PM   #3
FTReef
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Thats what I was afraid of....dang... ....

I'm heartbroken that the suffocated my fish.... some weren't that affected but it was incredible how fast some declined. I'm glad I caught it in time. My poor fish

This hobby is all about learning and experience I guess....... oh and $$$


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Old 09/24/2020, 02:19 PM   #4
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It also depends on the quality of your skimmer whether it produces bubbles (weak) or foam (good) and on the way water enters your sump. Mine falls from about a 6 foot height via a 12' hose, and splashes into my sump with considerable violence, all this for a 90 gallon lightly stocked tank. I can go an easy 8 hours with no power, no problem. You might look at each of those areas and see where yoo can pep up the agitation.


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Salinity 1.024-6; alkalinity 8.3-9.3 on KH scale; calcium 420; magnesium 1300, temp 78-80, nitrate .2. Ammonia 0. No filters: lps tank. Alk and cal won't rise if mg is low.

Current Tank Info: 105g AquaVim wedge, chromis, royal gramma basslet, tailspot blenny, ocellaris clown, yellow watchman, chestnut turbo snails, bristleworms, couple of hermits.
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Old 09/24/2020, 02:31 PM   #5
hkgar
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sk8r View Post
It also depends on the quality of your skimmer whether it produces bubbles (weak) or foam (good) and on the way water enters your sump. Mine falls from about a 6 foot height via a 12' hose, and splashes into my sump with considerable violence, all this for a 90 gallon lightly stocked tank. I can go an easy 8 hours with no power, no problem. You might look at each of those areas and see where yoo can pep up the agitation.
Part of the value of a skimmer. My sump is in the basement with about an 8 ft drop and lot's of agitation when it gets to the sump.

If the OP has a sump but no skimmer an airstone in the sump would help wit gas exchange.


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Current Tank Info: A 2 Barred Rabbitfish, Red Head Salon, Yellow/Purple, McMaster Fairy, Possum, 2 Leopard Wrasses, Kole, & Atlantic Blue Tangs, 2 Percula Clown, 3 PJ and 1 Banggai Cardinalfish , Swallowtail, Bellus and Coral Beauty Angels
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Old 09/24/2020, 06:18 PM   #6
FTReef
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Thanks for the input. Floridians unfortunately are not afforded basements otherwise I'd totally have that kind of plumbing.

Best I can do is my skimmer. I have a Reef Octopus which foams nicely but my return pump is set pretty low so I don't think I was getting oxygenated water back up to the main tank with enough speed and volume to compensate for the lack of surface agitation.

Might be a separate post but now I'm wondering if I should keep the gyres on constant or go back to the random mode I had been using. I figure I'll give my fish at least a couple days of constant flow on the surface but long term should I go back to a more random flow in the tank?


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Old 09/24/2020, 09:10 PM   #7
djryan2000
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FTReef View Post
Thanks for the input. Floridians unfortunately are not afforded basements otherwise I'd totally have that kind of plumbing.

Best I can do is my skimmer. I have a Reef Octopus which foams nicely but my return pump is set pretty low so I don't think I was getting oxygenated water back up to the main tank with enough speed and volume to compensate for the lack of surface agitation.

Might be a separate post but now I'm wondering if I should keep the gyres on constant or go back to the random mode I had been using. I figure I'll give my fish at least a couple days of constant flow on the surface but long term should I go back to a more random flow in the tank?

If you have corals, random flow is the way to go. Just make sure your surface doesn’t look still. Here’s a photo of my surface to show you what it should look like.


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Old 09/25/2020, 02:36 PM   #8
ROlympia
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Is your join date (Aug) an indication of the age of your tank? Did you test for ammonia? I'm not buying the "surface agitiation" theory.


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Old 09/26/2020, 09:18 AM   #9
FTReef
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Is your join date (Aug) an indication of the age of your tank? Did you test for ammonia? I'm not buying the "surface agitiation" theory.
It was a new tank for me but I bought it from someone who had it running for over a year. So while new to me it was a “mature” setup. Parameters all checked out.


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Old 09/26/2020, 09:21 AM   #10
FTReef
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As a follow up, the fish are all much perkier (is that a word?) no that I’ve corrected things.


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