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LED Lights and Seahorses

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  • Offline Alohakah
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LED Lights and Seahorses

« posted: 5 years ago »
I'm curious to hear what people think of using LED lights for their seahorses...
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Re: LED Lights and Seahorses

« Reply #1 posted: 5 years ago »
I'm curious to hear what people think of using LED lights for their seahorses...

I think if you're going to use LED be sure you use the dimable ones so u can turn down the intensity.  Also I would recommend Aqua sol since you can program them for sunrise to sunset..  So the light aren't clicking of an on which I find sometimes spooks the seahorses

« Last Edit: 5 years ago by nmr2930 »

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  • Offline TamiW
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Re: LED Lights and Seahorses

« Reply #2 posted: 5 years ago »
Yeah, I've found some of my seahorses get spooked when the lights go off too. Others don't seem to notice it at all. I don't know that I'd say dimming is a necessity, but it does seem to be a better way to deal with seahorses. Plus, a lot of seahorses breed best when there is a dawn and dusk cycle.

As for LED lights and seahorses, I haven't used any with them yet, but I've known a few keepers that do, and they seem to work very well. You can get the bright light of a reef without all the extra heat.

I've seen some people say seahorses don't like bright light, but if you look at the depths seahorses are found, it's generally fairly shallow water. I've used all level of brightness and haven't noticed any negatives. I do think it is important to have some sheltered areas they can retreat to, but that's sort of true of all fish.
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  • Offline NaNaFish
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Re: LED Lights and Seahorses

« Reply #3 posted: 5 years ago »
I have a 60g tank that I have set up for Chorses.  I had purchased a LED fixture that is programmable for dawn/ dusk and also for moon phases.  This is my first LED fixture and so far the lighting seems to be great for illuminating the tank.  I do not have the ponies yet, I have the CUC in there now.  I want to have the bio-load adjusted properly before they arrive. 
  • h.Comes Tigertail /Ringtail

Re: LED Lights and Seahorses

« Reply #4 posted: 5 years ago »
I have always used LED lights with my seahorses.  If I didn't, my poor chiller would have to work even harder to keep the tank cool.  I have not noticed any negatives in regards to how the seahorses react to them but then again, the lights are programmable with a dawn/dusk option that I keep on all of the time.  I thought they would react better when the main lights came on if there was already light in the tank.  It's also neat to be able to see them at night if I ever get the need to check on them.  The seahorses don't actually spook when the lights come on.  It's almost like they slowly start to stir to begin their day.

I have a 100 gallon tank and the lights that I use are 2 Marineland Reef-Capable LED strips.  I did have 3 strips on the tank, but when one quit working and I received a new replacement from Marineland I did not re-add it.  2 strips seemed like enough light.  I do not keep any corals with them - just macroalgae.  The macroalgae thrives with the lights that I have.  I know these are not the best lights by far, but for a simple seahorse/macroalgae-only setup, they work great!

I was never a big fan of the compact fluorescent bulbs.  The lighting output was never consistent, especially over time.  At least with the LEDs I don't have an algae problem due to failing bulbs.
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Re: LED Lights and Seahorses

« Reply #5 posted: 5 years ago »
I second that Prettyfishy
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  • Offline steffie78
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Re: LED Lights and Seahorses

« Reply #6 posted: 5 years ago »
Thanks for this thread! I was just thinking of changing my florescents for LED lights that have the dawn, midday, dusk set ups. I worried about the impact on my H. reidi and the macro algae that I currently have in the tank.
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  • Offline TamiW
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Re: LED Lights and Seahorses

« Reply #7 posted: 5 years ago »
I think with LEDs, you need to make sure the light output is comparable to what you already have any you'll be fine. But making sure it is comparable can be difficult. There is some funny math going around places that sell LED lights. For example, you'll see people stating 1 watt of LED is equivalent to x number of metal halide watts. And that isn't how LEDs work. There are so many variants and the efficiency is different on different LEDs. So it really depends on the actual light output. You get a lot of cheap ones saying stuff like 50 watts of LEDs are equivalent to 400 watt Metal halide. That's just not the case. The best LEDs are about 4 times more efficient than metal halide, and those will be expensive. Cheaper ones are probably no where near as close.

Another thing to consider is the color spectrum. One things LEDs lack is they only operate at a very narrow spectrum. LED fans and lighting manufacturers gloss over this point or plan lie about it. Some try to compensate by having different color LED lights in the fixtures, but then you're going to have peaks on those color ranges. Are they sufficient to grow coral and algae? Seems to be, but there is still some heated debate over how well they work long term. For macros, I wouldn't be too worried.

The other thing to look at is if it's user serviceable. It's possible that LEDs burn out. In spite of the hipe, there is always ways for them to fail before their time, and you don't want to have to send a fixture off for repair. Or worse, have the company out of business. And all their claims for x years of life are only theoretical. They have ways of testing that are more accurate than just guessing, but LEDs are constantly evolving and specific models being used haven't been around that long to prove that they can last that long. I know I had an LED flashlight that promised 11 years straight run time and it broke about 3 years in. And it's happening to people with LED fixtures. It's usually a bad LED, but not always.

All and all, I think LEDs are actually great for seahorses because you can get bright light but low levels of excess heat. But, it's important to understand they aren't quite the saviors they're made out to be. To be honest, I haven't gotten LED lights yet because every time I try and sort it out, there is so much info that goes into picking the right one that I give up.
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  • Offline NaNaFish
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Re: LED Lights and Seahorses

« Reply #8 posted: 5 years ago »
Now that have the horses in the tank and the macro growing the lights really look nice.  It adds quite a bit of nice light to all area of the tank.  In fact I will need to tone it down a little bit.  I have a few horses that try and dodge the lighting.  I purchased the LEDS 2nd hand and made sure that I had a controller with it to do the fine tuning.  There is really no sound from them and if there is, the sound of the pumps overrides it. 
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