Sump health


Well-Known Member
good to still some of the members still current


What is the best way to run the lighting on a sump?

ten years ago we did it a little different,

i run my sump almost as the primary tank (*its where all the control, water changes, and dose'n occure)



this hair algae (even though i have not really identified it yet) is so much better then the blue green bryoposis i fought for ever on the last setup


ok so this was just a few days over a month ago a vendor from ebay actually... came out of marathon Fl, did 2 orders, with the guy back to back, one of this cheto, and then a few days later a 50peice snail set

very happy (*i dont know if im allowed to plug for people so im not going to mention names)


what is the best light cycle to run? as far as time and intensity? kessil
24 hour lighting, offset from the Display tank up stair light cycle, during the day the intensity drops and then at night it gets stronger

the light cycle,alternates between the 2 tanks kinda, where my display tank gets more natural light and then supplied light in the evening
the sump gets its strongest light (*downstairs) 12hr offset

what is best for the type of hair algea and cheto?


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I'd say the first question to ask is, what do you want to get out of the refugium area of the sump? This can be used for quite a few things, nitrate and phosphate control, pod production, increasing the water volume in the system, and so on.

Since your looking to put some form of macro algae in it, we'll assume that your are trying to control nitrate and phosphate.

Now if money, time and space were no object, the best thing to do here would be to add a refugium outside of the sump and plumb it into your system. This would have several advantages.

For light spectrum in the refugium, the trend today seems to be to use lighting similar to the Kessil H160 Tuna Flora. This is a plant growing light and puts out a very red spectrum. This is also a money is no object kind of solution since this type of lighting is fairly expensive.

In reality, I don't think the lighting for a refugium makes too much difference as long as you have a reasonable normal spectrum and enough of it. Your macro algae is still going to grow.

I also think your doing it correctly by running the this lighting 12 hours offset from the main display tank.

As far as lighting goes, I'd say the best thing to do here is keep what you have and just set that for more or less duration and intensity as needed. One nice thing about lighting is that it's very easy to adjust.

As for the macro algae to be used chaetomorpha is the most popular, with caulerpa also being used. However, I think you could use any reasonable fast growing macro algae here. You might want several different species just in case you find one kind does better for you. Don't over look some of the red macro algaes.


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honestly a mangrove tree... right there next to the arcade game would be the end game... but

its been 20 years since i started, Im still dragging along some of the old microbe life (the gta, a bumble bee snail (*thee only one ive ever bought, made it thru 4 tank transfers)

i guess ill just ride it out, its young,

is there such a think as to much light in the sump?


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For some reason a lot of people seem to want a mangrove tree in a sump. If you think about it these grow into a tree. I don't think they are even worth considering unless you have a massive refugium and the lighting and such to take care if it. Few people can keep a tree inside their home. Although I must admit that I have seen a few homes with a greenhouse that could consider it.


Well-Known Member
i COULD see a massive pot (*half yard) with fittings,

im in to botany, nice tree... lots of sunlight.. inside... definitely doable

Im just wondering if i should go with more light or less light for the sump... perhaps max light with shaded area's ?


Well-Known Member
Im just wondering if i should go with more light or less light for the sump... perhaps max light with shaded area's ?

Keep the light focused and contained to the growing area, or you just add maintenance keeping the rest of the sump clean. Like all plants, you can overdo the intensity, but thats not easy to do in my experience with SW.