Algea explosion! My water is Green... what to do? - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 14 Old 03-23-2010, 03:58 PM Thread Starter
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Algea explosion! My water is Green... what to do?

I have a 70 gallon tank and it has been setup since mid December 09. My nitrites and ammonium levels are fine with biweekly water changes. I had a fry about a month ago of ciclads. Since that time my aquarium began to have an algae problem. Changed the water last week and now my water is green. I do not have an algae eater.

I bought Jungle No More Algae and used it 2 days ago with no noticeable difference. Any ideas what to do next?
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post #2 of 14 Old 03-23-2010, 04:31 PM
1. what kind of lighting do you have (type of bulbs, watts, schedule)

2. is your tank planted? what ferts do you use, if any? how many fish do you have in your tank? how are your plants doing?

3. i wouldn't mask the problem with algae killer...just fix the root of the problem.

4. what is your water change schedule?

Stephanie's updated tank profiles:
29 gallon 10 gallon
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post #3 of 14 Old 03-23-2010, 05:20 PM Thread Starter
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1. This might be my big problem. I have two lights. One is your typical fluorescent lamp 32 watts. Then I also have Coralife twin bulb lamp with a T5 28 watt 6700k Plan Lamp and the other is a Coralife Actinic F28-T5-BP. I turn them both on for about 6-10 hours a day.

2. I have one live fern, not fert, seems to be fine. I have 2 gouramis, three tetras, a loach, 2 ciclads and 15 or so ciclad fry.

4. Change the water about 1/3 once every 2-3 weeks.
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post #4 of 14 Old 03-23-2010, 06:15 PM
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With no plants (the one fern won't cover this), there is nothing to use the light and nutrients that naturally occur except algae, which is a plant itself. "Green water" is unicellular algae that reproduce so rapidly the water clouds green. It is caused by excess nutrients and light. An algae eater, or any such fish, would not help, since they could not eat this minuscule algae.

With no plants and only fish, you could reduce the light down to one tube, and then reduce the illumination period each day.

On the nutrients, do you know the nitrate reading? I'm betting it is high.

Seconding Stephanie's comment, please do not use any algae removing products. They usually don't work, and they will not work on green water--but even if they did, they also harm the fish. They are chemicals. Bad for fish tanks.

The other problem you have is lack of water changes. In non-plant tanks (and planted means well-planted) water changes should always be every week, and major. I do 50% changes every week and I have planted tanks where this is far less of an issue. Fish produce waste of all sorts that accumulates, organics get broken down by bacteria both in the water and in the substrate, and without removing some of this it just multiplies. Please do weekly water changes of 40-50%; your fish will thank you.

Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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post #5 of 14 Old 03-23-2010, 06:30 PM
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Can only agree on what's been said so far. Your lights are too high for not having plants there, so either dial them down or add a good amount of larger & fast growing plants, you can find plants fairly inexpensive here And with what you got going on now the only way to bring this back under control is either 2xweek ~30% water exchange or 1x week ~50-60%. Also make sure you do a GOOD gravel vacuum and cross check the amount you feed your fish there each day, overfeeding just add's to your issue it won't hurt fish to be fed every 2nd day.

For the chem's I'd be more then super careful as mentioned what do you think a liquid that kills organic matter does to your fish? I'd be very very careful there and personally I'd toss that stuff out my house and not use it. The other reason any chem liquid will not help any algae type long term is simply because you're trying to mask the issue rather then resolve the root cause of it so it will always come back.

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post #6 of 14 Old 03-23-2010, 07:16 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for all the help! I am doing a 50% water change today and will keep it up once a week.

I assume I should keep the plant light off until I add more plants. I have large gravel. Is large gravel a problem for plants? Should I switch it out or mix in some smaller rock?

Thanks again.
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post #7 of 14 Old 03-23-2010, 07:54 PM Thread Starter
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BTW... here is my fry from about a month ago
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post #8 of 14 Old 03-23-2010, 08:01 PM
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Originally Posted by strawnj View Post
I have large gravel. Is large gravel a problem for plants? Should I switch it out or mix in some smaller rock?

Thanks again.
Hi, how big of gravel are we talking about here? a couple of cm's or inches?
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post #9 of 14 Old 03-23-2010, 08:04 PM
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my gravel ranges between less than a 1/4 inch to about a 1/2 inch with some big smooth pebbles mixed in. my plants are doing great. nice "ciclads" btw

Last edited by poolman84; 03-23-2010 at 08:10 PM.
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post #10 of 14 Old 03-23-2010, 08:20 PM Thread Starter
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Sorry I can't spell. Gravel is nickel size or less.
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