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Old 03-21-2018, 11:10 PM
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Default Vibrant, nitrates and my experiences. The good, the bad and the ugly

A little over a month ago I started adding Vibrant to my reef tank. I have added a very low dose every second week. Two weeks ago I added my 3rd dose.

The reason I added Vibrant was I had a small amount of hair algae growing in my tank and I just wanted to keep it under control.

My tank is a 75 gallon reefer mostly sps (acros). It is a very very low nutrient tank, not by choice, just because my tank exports nutrients very well. I have been adding nitrates and phosphates regularly to my tank. Started adding nitrates to control phosphates. Needed to add phosphates because adding nitrates removed all phosphates (not good another story).

I add a lot of nitrates and I still cannot get a nitrate reading on Red Sea Pro test kit. But it helped with my coral colours and health exponentially. It also helps me to control phosphates from being all over the planet.

After the second dose of Vibrant I started to notice my phosphates were rising up really high. So I stopped adding phosphates. My phosphates kept increasing (getting a reading of 50+ Hanna ULR). At about this time I started noticing my coral colours not so bright.

My next step was to start adding more nitrate to the tank to try to stabilize the phosphates. After the 3rd dose I started to notice my coraline algae pealing off the back glass in sheets. My alkalinity (2 part) usage dropped to a fraction of what it was several weeks ago. My phosphates were still high. The colour of my corals are pale. One thing to note is I haven't had to clean my glass in about 3 weeks and there is nothing growing on it.

I was getting a bit concerned so I started doing research and it appears I am not the only one running into this problem. It appears that Vibrant is designed for reefers with high nutrients especially nitrates. It appears that the bacteria in Vibrant are aggressively using the nitrates. In my system because it is a low nutrient system that is not good because no nitrates= poor color, slow growth and high phosphates.

In the past 3 days I have been adding enormous amounts of nitrates and my phosphates have come down, I am now adding enormous amounts of nitrates and some phosphates and things are turning around. My alkalinity usage (2 part) has started to increase towards normal usage.

Conclusions
I like what Vibrant does and the affects on unwanted algae growth is. I feel I need to have a better understanding of the processes within my tank when I chose to put a new additive into it. Also trashing Vibrant claiming that it crashed my tank without fully understanding how or why is not fair to the product. These are my experiences and my experiences only, yours might be completely different.

Other reefers experiences with Vibrant are welcome.

Last edited by Frogger; 03-21-2018 at 11:13 PM.
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Old 03-22-2018, 05:03 AM
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Thanks for sharing your experiences! The low nutrient issue isn't something I was aware of. I guess every medication has its drawbacks.

Curious, why didn't you just add more clean up crew for the hair algae?
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Old 03-22-2018, 09:07 PM
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Originally Posted by Myka View Post
Curious, why didn't you just add more clean up crew for the hair algae?
Not quite the simple. I have multiple tanks and I primarily got the Vibrant for my 35 gallon reef that has been set up for 17 years, has a deep sand bed and a lot of nutrients in the tank. For that tank it is working like a charm

I all ready have hundreds of snails and a couple tangs in my larger tank. Don't like hermit crabs. I am considering adding a melanarus wrasse (other issues that need controlling) to the tank and am concerned he will make lunch with my smaller strombus snails. I want to make sure the hair algae doesn't take hold if he reduces the snail population.

I decided to try the Vibrant (as I already had it) at below the absolute lowest dose recommended 1ml per 10 gallons once every 2 weeks. I started with half of that and worked up to 6mls added to a 75 gallon tank with a 20 gallon sump in the last dose added which was 10 days ago.
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Old 03-23-2018, 04:00 AM
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Thanks for the info Glenn
Good luck with it
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Old 03-23-2018, 04:12 AM
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Vibrant now also has a few new products
-nitrate balance
Meant to control you nitrates while dosing vibrant reef cleaner.

- chroma color
Maintains and regains color for corals in ultra low nutrient tanks.

I have yet to use the two new products but I've been using vibrant when I started my 8x4 coral tank. It definitely does work.

Last edited by Myka; 03-23-2018 at 03:13 PM.
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Old 03-23-2018, 06:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JamRobo View Post
Vibrant now also has a few new products
-nitrate balance
Meant to control you nitrates while dosing vibrant reef cleaner.

- chroma color
Maintains and regains color for corals in ultra low nutrient tanks.
Not ready to try all this new snake oil. I will let someone else be the guinea pig.

It is my understanding that the company that makes Vibrant is actually a fish tank maintenance business who lucked into the product almost by accident. Not sure if i want them developing and doing the scientific research on new products for me.
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Old 03-23-2018, 03:22 PM
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Originally Posted by Frogger View Post
I am considering adding a melanarus wrasse (other issues that need controlling) to the tank and am concerned he will make lunch with my smaller strombus snails.
Fwiw, I had a Grey Head Wrasse (bought as a female Melanurus haha) which is like a bigger version of the Melanurus, and he didn't touch any snails or the Scarlet Hermits. Very few fish will bother Conchs (Strombus), so I don't think you'll have any trouble there. Also, the Scarlet Hermits and many of my snails are 5-8 years old and the Scarlets only bother the Cerith Snails (they kill maybe 1-2 a year). Scarlets are also really good for hair algae. Scarlets can't be lumped in with other hermits - they are great!
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Old 03-23-2018, 04:30 PM
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Don't know if you're adding a wrasse due to aefw but I added a yellow wrasse and it demolished them! Just my experience, thought I'd throw it out there...
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Old 03-23-2018, 08:55 PM
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I have been trying out vibrant for the last 4 months on my 10 gallon. Originally it was to help get a massive bubble algae outbreak under control.

Can't say I have noticed much of a difference between dosing it and not.

I started with their recommended dosage a couple times a week for a month. - No changes.

Changed my water source, kept dosing, got control of bubble algae, but cyno took over and killed all but 3 corals. Since that happened I have been playing around with the dosage and I don't see any difference. Gone up to 5ml 3X week with no changes to anything at all. Remaining corals are doing ok and algae is still growing, but slowly.
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Old 03-24-2018, 04:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Animal-Chin View Post
Don't know if you're adding a wrasse due to aefw but I added a yellow wrasse and it demolished them! Just my experience, thought I'd throw it out there...
No don't have AEFW (or at least not that I know, I am extremely paranoid).

I have monti nudibranch I also have some very small copepods (not red bugs) on some of my acropora.
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