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All you need to know guide to zeovit!

Discussion in 'Zeovit® System' started by Tofubox, Jun 11, 2015.

  1. Tofubox

    Tofubox
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    Royal Gramma

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    Hey guys, I've been on zeovit for some time now, and its my favourite method of reefing by far. I'm starting this topic just to share with those unfamiliar with the zeovit system. Maybe you can consider using zeovit yourself! Most of the information can be found on zeovit forum or korallen-zucht.de

    One thing to note about zeovit....DO NOT BE ALARMED by the amount of blue bottles there are! Stick to the basic 4, and u can very much be successful.

    What is Zeovit?

    Let’s start off with what does the ZeoVit system do. Zeovit is a system that incorporates bacterial sources to help rid a system of excess nutrients. Some have labeled this as one of this first well publicized ultra low nutrient system or ULNS. The idea is to mimic natural seawater (NSW) parameters by reducing the levels of Nitrate and Phosphate without lowering other essential parameters such as Calcium and Magnesium.

    The best way that I understand this is a two step process; 1) the system removes excess nutrients such as nitrate and phosphate through bacteria sources and skimming. 2) Once ULNS has been achieved, you may 'tweak' coral colors through additional Zeovit additives.

    One note; Zeovit is not a ‘cookie-cutter’ system, since every system is different and has different needs, the dosage and products of zeovit will vary from one tank to another. Although Zeovit is a very precision system you will get your best results by watching your corals and letting them tell you what is needed. Zeovit uses some basic introductory guidelines to get you started.

    In order for the ZEOvit method to be successful, a few fundamental husbandry techniques and equipment components must also be included in your aquarium's design and operation. These requirements include strong and efficient skimming, lighting appropriate and sufficient for the aquarium's inhabitants, regular weekly water changes, addition of elements at low levels, non-excessive addition of nutrients, and optimum and stabile water parameters (Ca, Mg, KH, Salinity).


    The Basic Four
    The basic four is the absolute minimum you will need to incorporate (purchase) for the zeovit system. The other Zeovit products are 'as needed' additives and suppliment to help improve or tweak your system. In addition to the basic four, you will need some type of Zeovit reactor and use Carbon 24/7 every 30 days.

    Zeolites
    Think of these as porous man made rocks that absorb something, specifically reef toxins (I would say nitrate and phosphate but nobody knows for sure if these actually remove them or help bind them so your skimmer can easily remove them). Zeovit uses a mixture of different zeolites that have been found to best reduce toxins in a saltwater system. Exactly how they work has been much debated; from a theory of bacterial colonizing to locking-up or removing ammonia, to a transformation process of nutrients to a different ion. Sorry, I have no idea of how it works just that it does.

    The zeolites are stored in a reactor, which looks a lot like a Calcium reactor without all the extra do-dads on it. It is a single chamber with a second chamber inside the first with a handle that protrudes out of the top. The Zeolites are placed in the second chamber and once a day the second chamber is ‘pumped’ to clean the zeolites of mulm (algae build up). This mulm is said to actually feed corals.

    Zeolites are changed out at approximately every six to eight weeks (I have never had good results with zeolites lasting past eight weeks). I assume the exchange rate is based on the amount of nutrients you have in your system much like activated carbon.

    Zeobak
    This is a bacteria source that is used to colonize the zeolites, live rock and/or sand beds which help reduce nutrients. The biggest difference in my option about other carbon sourced systems such as a vodka or vodka/sugar/vinegar (VSV) is that they do not incorporate a bacteria source. It has been theorized that running a system that is totally reliant on ones own tank to produce the necessary bacteria can result in one bacteria completing against another bacteria. This competition can result in a mono-culture of bacteria which does not remove nutrients at all.

    Zeobak is dosed every day initially, after colonies have established in your system this is drastically reduced to once or twice weekly.

    Zeofood (Many of us now substitute this with Zeovit's Spongepower instead)
    This is a food source for your corals and bacteria, since you are basically starving your corals of excess nutrients you need to put something back in for your corals to feed on. Since zeovit has introduced so many other food sources such as amino acids and Xtra, I rarely use this product any more.

    Initially dosed at approximately five drops per 200 net gallons.

    ZeoStart
    This is the carbon source; it smells like an Easter egg coloring kit (vinegar). I am sure it is some mixture of vinegar, sugar and/or something else but not sure exactly what. Initially, this was the carbon source I used in conjunction with Prodibio BioDigest and it worked very well.

    ZeoStart helps in the reproduction of nitrifying bacteria which basically ‘eats’ phosphate and nitrate. Zeostart works in conjunction with zeobak (the food for the bacteria) and zeobak works in conjunction with the zeolites.
     
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  2. Tofubox

    Tofubox
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    Royal Gramma

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    And of course, The Zeovit bible (Courtesy of HotHotHot from zeovit.com):

    Hi All,
    We all know that the ZEOvit additives are good stuff; both safe and effective when used as directed. But sometimes through our own error of adding too much of an additive [​IMG] , or the accumulation of a particular substance, we can experience unexpected results.


    This thread is intended to be a troubleshooting guide for beginners and experienced ZEOheads alike. Much of the preliminary information for this thread was gathered from http://www.shadowramysreef.com with permission.


    I'd like to break the additives down into 2 basic categories: organic and inorganic. "Organic" means living, biological, or food. "Inorganic" means mineral based, or non-living. If you believe something has been miscategorized please let me know.


    Feel free to add your experiences with these additives and we will update this post as necessary.


    Listed below are all of the ZEO additives.


    Organic:
    In general, overdosing organic substances leads to all kinds of undesirable results such as nuisance algae, cyano, bacteria blooms, etc.

    Amino Acid LPS
    Intended use: Coral food
    Positive results: Growth, general color, PE
    OD Symptoms: Brown & light green film, darkening

    Amino Acid HC
    Intended use: Coral food
    Positive results: Growth, general color, PE
    OD Symptoms: Brown & light green film, darkening

    Sponge Power
    Intended use: Increased sponge growth
    Positive results: Enhanced coral growth, thicker tissue, increased sponge growth
    OD Symptoms: Brown film

    ZEObac
    Intended use: Establish biological filtration, coral food
    Positive results: Nutrient reduction, color enhancer
    OD Symptoms: Browning, darkening , transparent slimy patches

    ZEOfood7
    Intended use: Increase coral and bacteria growth.
    Positive results: Nitrate and nitrite are reduced
    OD Symptoms: Nuisance algae, cyano, darkening, brown film

    ZEOlive
    Intended use: Liquid filter medium, remove yellowing compounds, nitrate, phosphate
    Positive results:
    OD Symptoms:

    ZEOstart2
    Intended use: Accelerates the cycling process in new tanks, color enhancer, soft coral growth and PE
    Positive results: Growth , PO4 und NO3 reduction
    OD Symptoms: brown film forming air bubbles at lighting period

    ZEOzym
    Intended use: Improved biological functions, Better coral growth, Cleaner sand, Helps combat slime algae & cyanobacteria, improved skimming
    Positive results: Reduced sludge on live rock and sand.
    OD Symptoms: Temporary yellowing of water , temporary increase of PO4 in older nutrient richer systems

    Inorganic:
    In general, overdosing inorganic substances can lead to severe problems due to toxicity. STN and RTN are 2 forms of tissue death we can experience.

    Zeolites
    Intended use: Polish water, remove toxins
    Positive results: Clearer water, lower nutrients
    OD Symptoms: Pale coral colors and reduced PE due to rapid nutrient reduction, RTN, coral death

    Carbon
    Intended use: Nitrate and phosphate removal
    Positive results: Clearer water
    OD Symptoms: Pale coral colors and reduced PE due to rapid nutrient reduction, burnt tips

    Calcium Plus
    Intended use: Increases calcium
    Positive results: Increased calcium levels
    OD Symptoms: Precipitation

    Iodide Complex
    Intended use: Color enhancer, aid crustation molting
    Positive results: Lower death rate during crustation molting, PE
    OD Symptoms: Yellow corals turn green, darkening of SPS, increase of cyano if they are already established in the system

    Iron
    Intended use: Color enhancer
    Positive results: Increased green color
    OD Symptoms: Nuisance algae growth, green shimmer on yellow corals , darkening of SPS tissue

    KH Plus
    Intended use: Increases alkalinity
    Positive results: Coral growth, natural alk levels (6.5-7.5 dKH)*
    * SeaChem Reef Salt user should aim for 8.5dKH
    OD Symptoms: High alk readings, burnt tips

    Coral Snow
    Intended use: Nutrient delivery, secondary biological facilitator
    Positive results: Can remove cyano
    OD Symptoms:

    Magnesium Complex
    Intended use: Raise magnesium levels
    Positive results: Increased growth, stabile calcium and alk
    OD Symptoms: High magnesium readings, burnt tips

    B-Balance
    Intended use: Color enhancer
    Positive results: Slow lighting in SPS tissue, increase of coloration
    OD Symptoms:

    Coral Vitalizer
    Intended use: Coral food
    Positive results: Coral growth, PE
    OD Symptoms: Brown film

    K-Balance Potassium (Strong)
    Intended use: Raise potassium levels, increase growth and coloration
    Positive results: Natural K+ levels (380-400mg/l) , increase in several colors, PE, thicker tissue, growth
    OD Symptoms: Burnt tips, darkening, algae growth, brown film

    Xtra
    Intended use: Color and growth enhancer
    Positive results: increase of SPS coral coloration / tips
    OD Symptoms: Darkening

    Potassium Iodide Fluoride
    Intended use: enhances blue colors
    Positive results: increase of several colors / PE
    OD Symptoms: Darkening, yellow corals turn green , increase of cyano if already established in the system

    Strontium Complex
    Intended use: Growth enhancer
    Positive results:
    OD Symptoms:

    Stylo-Pocci-Glow
    Intended use: Specifically for seriatopora, stylophora and poccilopora. This supplement will bring out the original color of these animals with daily dosing.
    Positive results: slow lighting of tissue in those corals
    OD Symptoms: if continuous overdosed in high quantities clams might retract

    ZEOspur
    Intended use: Color enhancer, trace elements
    Positive results: Lighting of SPS tissue, increase of several colors
    OD Symptoms: Bleaching

    ZEOspur Macro
    Intended use: Contains various metal salts, trace elements
    Positive results: Coloration
    OD Symptoms: Darkening

    ZEOspur2
    Intended use: Color enhancer, trace elements
    Positive results: Lighting of SPS tissue, increase of several colors
    OD Symptoms: Bleaching
     
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  3. Tofubox

    Tofubox
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    Royal Gramma

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  4. Bunster

    Bunster
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    Queen Angelfish

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    great guide... vote for it to be stickied
     
  5. GT5

    GT5
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    Nudibranch

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    Thanks tofu. This is a very very good compilation.
     
  6. andtsg

    andtsg
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    Princess Anthias

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    I have a question ah. how long shall we manually pump the stones daily to clean off the mulm? 30 seconds? 60 seconds?

    if using automatic, how long will it chamber pumped?
     
  7. Tofubox

    Tofubox
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    Royal Gramma

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    Excellent write up from http://www.zeovit.co.nz/observations.php

    Observations & Experiences

    "Observations and Experiences" that expand on those already outlined in the ZEOvit-Guide.New and experienced users may find this useful when fine tuning/setup/dosing/targeting colour/product use/side effects/benefits etc.
    These observations are subjective and as every tank is unique,any suggestions may have differing results requiring modification to suit your own reeftank.

    Lights out:Zeo recommend to stir/shake/pump the reactor twice a day if possible.When possible coincide your dosing and mulm with your lights out time,this is when the corals will extend to feed and benefit from elements added.
    --------------------------------------------------------------
    Zeobak:Dose your zeobak in or near the reactor.If you are running 3 hours on/off,easy to dose bak to the reactor during the off cycle.This ensures the dose goes to work directly on the zeovit.Start2 may also be dosed to the reactor at this time if desired.
    --------------------------------------------------------------
    Double Dosage:If starting specific new products, having not used it previously, it has been noted that a larger hit to replenish missing minerals/elements is beneficial.A good example of this is B-Balance "For the initial use you can dose 50-100 ml per 100 L / 25 gallons tank water
    to refill missing minerals. Then pause for 2 days.Resume normal dosage".Sponge power/PIF(Potassium iodine fluoride) may be doubled on first dose also.
    --------------------------------------------------------------
    Kh:When starting the Zeovit system,recommended Kh levels are approx 6-8DKh.Most tanks prior zeo run 10-12DKh,possibly higher.Take your time, very slowly reducing this to zeo levels.Its been my experience hard corals dont cope well with rapid Kh change,possible rtn/stn precursor,so monitor and reduce it slowly over a month at least.
    --------------------------------------------------------------
    Sponge Power:Amazing results within a couple of weeks!wow!After using this for over two months,acro colour/ growth is terrific,sponges,fan worms,lps,thrive and all myriad of biological diversity has been increased.Acting in broad spectrum the odd aiptasia likes it too!.Its been observed,cutting back dosage after the first months to 2/3 doses per week maintains the consistent improvement without turning your aiptasia into superfreaks;)Easier to see,easier to kill!!
    --------------------------------------------------------------
    Cost Effective:The only element that has (recommended) to be dosed daily is ZeoStart2..Even then,no harm done,missing the odd day(s)Guilty! 20 drops= 1 ml approx
    --------------------------------------------------------------
    Zeospur2:For those that use the mighty blue Zeospur2,if you need to help out a new or stubborn coral to renew its zooanthalae,try targeting the dose around this particular coral next time you dose,it will spread to the whole tank but has a prominent effect on the target coral.Less is more!
    -------------------------------------------------------------
    K-Balance:Potassium deficiency can be diagnosed in different corals.
    Montipora, especially plating types, display slower growth and appear washed out to
    grey. Latent potassium deficiency may also lead to tissue loss, spreading from one or
    more spots.
    Stylophora and Pocillopora appear as if they have been exposed to air for a
    long period of time. Polyps are completely withdrawn and colors are light and without
    depth.
    Seriatopora may completely loose all tissue, starting from the base, within only a
    few days. The pink coloration may turn into a light brown.
    Acropora may loose their
    color and get lighter and pale. Growth stops completely. If the potassium deficiency
    continues tissue is lost, mostly starting from the base.
    -------------------------------------------------------------
    Zeo film:)After several years it has been recognised that after wiping down the zeo reactor in the sump,the slime film mulm which adheres to the outside of the reactor and around the base,is a valuable kind of bacteria plankton that is absorbed by many corals.This in turn leads to more intense coloration. Furthermore it enhances the vitality of Goniopora, Alveopora, seriatopora corals and Heliofungia.So periodically give the outside a wipe over in sump,for an extra colour kick:)
    -------------------------------------------------------------
    Seperate your carbon/zeovit exchange.After a recent maintenance day,i noted some basal recession after carrying out both carbon & zeolite exchanges at the same time.The suggestion is spacing these apart by 7 days, resulting in no coral stress. Together may cause too rapid water chemistry changes for the corals to adapt.
    Culprits towards a base recession are drifting parameters so things to check:
    Alkalinity-Kh too high/low
    Calcium
    Salinity
    Restabilise these and recession will cease.
    -------------------------------------------------------------
    SPS Colorization,fine tuning ideas to assist as a basic map for tweaking colours.
    This assumes the minimum suggested standards to keeping SPS; strong lighting, calcium at the appropriate levels, strong skimming and live rock.

    Yellows
    Highly dependent on Nitrate and PO4 levels.Yellows are sort of you baseline; yellows will tell you a lot about what is going on in your tank, what is needed and what is overdosed. Nitrate and/or PO4 reduction is most important,Carbon dosing and/or water changes . Basically, if you want to do SPS, I would suggest starting with an acropora that is yellow. If you can get it to stay yellow for several months, you should be ready for something else.
    -------------------------------------------------------------
    Greens(Iron concentrate)

    Most green colouration can be achieved through the small addition of an Iron Concentrate . You must be very careful with Iron because it is also an Algae accelerator; this is why it is so important for you to get your yellows colours first (your N and P will be lowered).

    * Greens can clash somewhat with the blue supplementations of Potassium and you end up with an off green/yellow coral (shimmer).

    Additionally, I use my yellows as indicators for my greens and blues. Youll notice an Iron deficiency if your greens are brown color or they are paling in color. I start off by dosing Iron at about 1 drop per 50 usg twice a week and take note of what happens, color changes, algae growth, until my yellow acroporas display a green shimmer (it wont be a solid green but a shimmer of a green/yellow).

    Please note, a sign of overdosing is a darkening of tissue, when this happens too much iron is being added. Another sign of overdosing is algae growth, stop immediately and possibly do a water change if necessary. Like everything else reef, go slowly.
    ------------------------------------------------------------
    Blues and some purples(PIF-Potassium Iodide Fluoride)

    This is mainly for blues but it has been found it can also have an effect on purples. The supplement for this is Potassium Iodide Concentrate (Zeovit PIF)Dont get something that says Potassium because that is a little different. Dosing should be done when blue colors become less bright. Again, using yellow corals as indicators, stop dosing when yellow corals display a green shimmer.
    ------------------------------------------------------------
    Reds/Pinks and some Purples(K-Balance/B-Balance/Coral Vitalizer)

    Primarily for coloring reds and pinks in Montiporas, Pocilloporas, Birdsnest, other Stys and Seriatoporas. The supplement is Potassium (K, not potassium iodide).

    B-Balance replenishes missing minerals and vitamins,and really enhances red stylos pocs.

    For dosing you can use your monitporas, especially caps as indicators. Supplementing is required when Montiporas display slower growth and appear washed out to silver/grey appearance. Indicators on Stylos and Pocs are when they look like they have been exposed to air (sucked in or when they have been touched by your hand). Polyps are completely withdrawn and colors are light. Other indicators of potassium deficiency are when the pinks turn into a light brown and when acroporas loose their color and get lighter and pale. A major potassium deficiency is seen when tissue is receeding or lost, mostly starting from the base opposed to spotting (patchy look). An overdose can lead to tip burning so avoid mistaking tip burn for new growth. Tips burn will be white with no polyps.
    ------------------------------------------------------------
    Purples(Coral Vitalizer/Sponge Power)
    Probably one of the hardest coloration of all acroporas from my experience since it is a combination of several variables.

    First and foremost is water clarity, which means Carbon and/or filter socks. Zeo Sponge Power, which can be used in any system, feeds sponges. Sponges are great because they can filter a mass amount of water for better water clarity.

    From what I have noted, increased water clarify will first effect SPS tips but not the complete base. I have seen the same coral with really nice purple tips but brown/tan/white bases. In another tank,the same coral,which met all other parameters will have full purple from base to tip.

    Second being lighting. From observations,purples seem to love 420-440nm range light spectrum, those found in actinics and 20K halides. Some of the best purples I have seen are in tanks that have 440nm blue actinics

    Third, supplements such as Iodide and Potassium (see blues and Reds/Pinks). Again, make sure your greens are green and yellows are yellow. Your blues should be bright with depth. Iodide will also help if you have tip burn.
    ---------------------------------------------------------
    Darkened tissue/Browned out corals(Xtra/B-Balance)
    Pohls Xtra will have a mild lightening effect on acropora corals.The zooanthalae is gently shed to be replenished a couple of days later resulting in brighter deeper tissue colours without coral any stress,works great with a BB combo
     
  8. clancysg

    clancysg
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    Nudibranch

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    Nice article, any experience on Zeovit coral booster?
     
  9. Tofubox

    Tofubox
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    Royal Gramma

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    dbl post mod pls delete
     
  10. Tofubox

    Tofubox
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    Royal Gramma

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    The much popular Zeovit 14 day cycle.

    Initial cycle – just 14 days?An effective biology and some other “tricks” make it possible!
    Here we go:
    Day 0:
    Install an appropriate sea water tank, install the sump, install necessary PVC tubing and make sure to give the glue enough time to dry !

    Day 1:
    1. Water
    Fill the system with reverse osmosis water, if possible use the RO unit with a filter resin as last stage. Warm up the water to 20-25° C and install current pumps at the same time.

    2. Current
    We recommend a smooth and broad flow, about 20-30 times of the tank’s volume per hour. Also well approved is the combination with Osci-Motion – they create a very natural shifting streaming due to the pivoting pumps.

    3. Sea salt
    As soon as the water temperature is around 25 °C add salt slowly into the current and adopt the salinity around 34 %o. Live rock can be added as soon as the salt has dissolved completely and the water is clear.

    4. Live rock
    It is very important to use fresh and clear live rock, approx. 10 % of the tank’s contents. Always available in our online shop or in our store in Coburg. Rock work can easily and stable be fixed with Speedglue without harming the water quality in any way.

    After you bring in the live rock in the tank, the sand bed is next. At this time the skimmer is started as well as the ZEOvit® filter and the tank needs light now!

    5. Sand bed
    Now you can add a shallow sand bed. Use crushed Coral Sand or Aragonite from Korallenzucht. Do not use Live Sand in combination with the ZEOvit® system.

    Coral Sand
    Very clean coral sand from the best coral regions in a optimal size of 2-4 mm. Soak in reverse osmosis water for 3-4 days before use and replace osmosis water daily.

    Or you can take Aragonite:
    High quality sand without phosphates for sand bed. This can be used immediately without soaking for a few days.

    6. Start the ZEOvit® filter and skimmer
    Use 1 liter ZEOvit® for each 400 l of water tank volume. Do not exceed flow rate through the filter of 400 l per hour maximum. Start your protein skimmer.

    7. Lighting and other technical equipment
    Start the lighting min. 10 hours per day. Start also all other technical equipment now.

    8. Dosage
    The addition of ZEObak, ZEOstart and Sponge Power can be started now.

    ZEObak: 5 ml per 100 liters/25 gallons
    ZEOstart: 10 ml per 100 liters/25 gallons
    Sponge Power: 3 ml per 100 liters/25 gallons

    Day 2 and Day 3
    Dosing break.

    Day 4:
    Dose ZEObak, ZEOstart and Sponge Power as recommended on the products label.

    Day 4-10:
    Different algae phases can appear, like some brown slime algae followed by some healthy green algae. Use the same dosage like described for day 4 above. Double check Salinity.

    Day 10
    First herbivore fish (max. 2 per 200 L) can be added, also sea urchins and turbo snails. You should also be able to add the first not to sensitive corals like branching Montipora. Add now the Activated Carbon.

    Activated Carbon
    As soon as the first animals are stocked into the system, add the Activated Carbon: 0.5 – 1 Liter per 1000 liters as recommended. Replacement interval 30 days.

    Day 11-14
    Keep dosage as described for day 4. Test Carbonate Hardness and Salinity carefully. More corals can now be added into the system. Additional fish can be added but should be done very slow. Also fish feeding has to be done very carefully in this phase as biology is not very stabile in this phase. Do not add more fish than 1-2 fish per 250 liters per week. After additional 4 weeks you can add the rest of the fish which where planed for the system.

    With this method we have started many tanks very successfully without any problems. Take care of the above directions.

    [​IMG]
    1 month

    [​IMG]
    1 month

    [​IMG]
    6 months

    [​IMG]
    10 months

    [​IMG]
    10 months

    [​IMG]
    1 year

    [​IMG]
    1 year

    [​IMG]
    1 year
    [​IMG]
    1 3/4 years

    [​IMG]
    1 3/4 years

    By using the ZEOvit® system your tank has optimum preconditions for healthy growth and fantastic coloration of your corals. When used permanently your reef grows healthy and magnificent and also your fish can show their full beauty
     
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  11. Alfred143

    Alfred143
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    Nudibranch

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    Greetings, My first post :)
    So I just purchased the Zeovit System and I'm running a Live Sand Bed and Live Rock . So I here about Cyno breakouts with the use of live sand. Any recommendations on avoiding the breakout as I already have the tank up and running. I didnt know about this till I ordered the product.
    Worse case is I just return the product and be out of pocket for the shipping.
     
  12. youdontknowme

    youdontknowme
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    Almost every reefers will go through cyano phase one... Hard to run away from it. Havent seen anyone didn't have any slight cyano at all. Not purely due to live sand too anyway
     

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