Brown Algae Bloom has begun


Active Member
I'd like to quickly go over my second experience with a saltwater tank and where it stands right now.
I lost my first tank to Hurrican Isabell a couple of years ago while in our rental house - we were out of electricity for a full week and when the power came back on it was obviously too late. I lost about $3000.00 worth of live rock, live sand and live stock.
I've waited until we moved into the new house, finished the basement and finally added the basement bathroom with a utility sink in the room where the sump system is.
I put the new tank together with a plenum deep sand bed - last time the nitrate levels were way too high.
Since it's only a 55 gallon tank so I used 1/2" pvc pipe to create the plenum floor versus 1". Put 80 lbs of carib-sea for the plenum with a link pipe to the plenum water for cycle and aerobic bateria. Covered carb-sea with screen and put 80 lbs of aragonite. Added 20 lbs of bagged live sand (for bacteria)Put my old live rock (now just bleached coral and created an aqua scape.
Added one piece of live rock (aqua cultured with coraline algae, Caluerpa, aiptasia (yes it had six on it) some sponges, small feather dusters and some other odds and ends. waited a few days and watched the Ammonia rise .3 and watched the nitrites spike (adding the live rock really speeds things up). Added 5 lbs of live sand from an office mates tank and some of his water. When I added his sand the dust went over a lot of the base rock in the tank. Made the tank cloudy for about a day.
Watched the Ammonia rise from 0 to .3 and back to zero (the bacteria and animals in the live sand and the already cycled water shortened the cycle time).
Added two ocellaris clown fish and everywhere the live sand dust was left on the aragonite sand and base rock I now have a brown algae bloom.
a couple more days and I'll get a cleaning crew.
tomorrow I will remove the access pipe to the bottom to create the anaerobic plenum floor. More to come about the plenum and it's success.


Well-Known Member
Well, that's great man. Glad your starting a tank. Is it going to be a reef tank or a fish only tank etc?
The brown algae is just diatoms, correct? Need to get a cleanup crew in there.