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Algea Problems

This is a discussion on Algea Problems within the Beginner Freshwater Aquarium forums, part of the Freshwater Fish and Aquariums category; --> Originally Posted by Thomas214 Your tank looks like it has some bacteria growth in it. It also looks like to me that your pH ...

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Old 12-30-2009, 02:04 PM   #11
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thomas214 View Post
Your tank looks like it has some bacteria growth in it. It also looks like to me that your pH is high it needs to be in the range 6.8-7.2 (someone correct me if im wrong).
Excuse my honest question: Have you had algae before and properly eliminated it from your tank w/out chems??

1) Bacteria Bloom in new tanks appears as 'white clouds'
2) His/ Her pH has absolutely NOTHING to do neither with a bacteria bloom nor algae growth. The ONLY thing pH and hardness are influencing is what kinda fish your keeping in your tank. So I really do not know where from you have this kinda statement, but its not correct.
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Old 12-30-2009, 03:24 PM   #12
 
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Originally Posted by Angel079 View Post
Rhizoclonium = fine green or brownish threads which are soft and slimy
Thread/ Fuzz Alage = Generally green and varying in length

From your description I'm not 100% certain which one you have just yet - Any chance of a picture? Or you googel the 2 named one's see what looks more like yours?

From what you're saying I am very confident you're having this outbreak due to low or no nutrition in your tank and/ or lack of CO2. Do you have live plants in there???
Do you use any fertilizer? How long per day are your lights running?

What I would do if this was my tank now:
1) Take effected decor out, scrub it down with a hard brush (no chemicals!)
2) Plant live plants if non are in yet and/ or Begin to add a comprehensive fertilizer (such as flourish)
3) Establish regular weekly water exchanges of ~30%
I have a fairly heavily planted tank, with about 1.25 watts/gallon, so i try to leave the light on longer, average about 14 hours a day. I do use Flourish comprehensive plant supplement about once a week. I don't have CO2.

I am also currently cycling my tank, so i would like to hold off the water changes until it has finished.
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Old 12-30-2009, 05:30 PM   #13
 
Also how does water changes help control algae?
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Old 12-30-2009, 06:13 PM   #14
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by soccermatt View Post
I have a fairly heavily planted tank, with about 1.25 watts/gallon, so i try to leave the light on longer, average about 14 hours a day. I do use Flourish comprehensive plant supplement about once a week. I don't have CO2.

I am also currently cycling my tank, so i would like to hold off the water changes until it has finished.
Something between your light and the fert's doesn't seem balanced there form the type algae you're describing... New tanks are tough thou...Do you have ANY chance to get any USED filter media from someone around you to spike the tank some?
Brand new set ups are always very common to have one sort or another of algae develop. Which usually can be easily cleaned out/ scrubbed off and once the tank is cycled and start stocking won't return.
It may be an option for you to dial the lights down to 10hrs/day and make sure to use your fert's as directed 1x week every week.

Biggest thing with algae of any type: Patience

I'm pretty sure taken named measurement, having the tank finish cycle & start stock, you won't have issue after that.

For your 2nd question: Many algae types incl the 2 I named before are seen in tanks with ammonia and NO readings, poor water quality/ maintenance - That's why regular weekly w/c help prevent/ eliminate algae. Take my word for it, I just went through WEEKS of a nightmare with my new 55g and NEVER in all these yrs with any/ all of my tanks EVER seen anything that came even remotely close to this nightmare (new tank, cycled but not established, hardcore ick attach, many many bad factors came down at once in this tank)
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Old 12-30-2009, 06:58 PM   #15
 
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Excuse my honest question: Have you had algae before and properly eliminated it from your tank w/out chems??

I had a massive hair and brown algae attack during cycling in my 10g. I did successfuly rid my tank of it with otos.
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Old 12-31-2009, 11:01 AM   #16
 
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I have followed this thread and feel I must correct some of the information. There is also a serious issue with the nitrite.

First, the algae. Soccermatt has a new tank which is still in the initial cycling. All such tanks experience fluctuating water conditions until the biological stability is reached post-cycle. "Cycled" as I'm using it means the biological state of the aquarium is basically stable and relative to the fish, plant, invertebrate and bacteria life in it at that time. Once this state is reached, it is easier to control algae because the biological stability will remain unless the aquarist does something or allows something to affect it negatively. This normally takes 2-3 months. As I use the term, it is more than just the initial cycle of ammonia/nitrite/nitrate.

In new tanks that have not yet cycled algae of various types frequently appears. A nitrite reading of 5 (which if accurate would kill any fish if there were any in the tank) clearly shows you are in the second stage of the cycle. I would suggest removing the algae from the glass and waiting things out. Algae is common in all aquaria that are balanced, but the balance keeps it in control. Your plants and light are fine to achieve this, provided nothing is done to negatively affect the process during and post-cycling.

Second, water changes. These can assist in algae control by maintaining stable water parameters. Once established, a tank with a moderate to heavy fish load must receive a weekly (at the least) partial water change, and it should be 50% or more. With fewer fish, and having plants, this can be lessened. But most of us like more fish in our tanks than a lax maintenance system can support healthily. A regular weekly pwc of 50-70% will not harm the fish, in fact they will thank you for it. I've written at length elsewhere on the issues with pollution and water changes.

During the cycling process, water changes do not hamper the cycling. Bacteria (nitrosomonas and nitrospira) colonize all hard surfaces under water. The substrate (gravel) should not be disturbed during cycling so as to encourage bacteria colonization; similarly the filter should not be rinsed or cleaned unless absolutely necessary to keep the water flow through the media--and this is normally not an issue at this stage when little life is in the tank.

Back to your nitrite reading; in a planted tank I would never expect to see nitrite readings even during cycling. Is the tank well planted? If it is, there should not even be a cycle at the beginning. I have set up dozens of new tanks with plants and fish added the first day and never had a cycle. I may have more comment when I know a bit more about the number and type of plants.

To the otos, these fish are extremely sensitive to water parameters and water quality and should never be added to a tank that is not biologically mature. Not only have countless other aquarists stated this, but I have experienced it first hand. When I set up a new tank, and if I intend to have otos (there are other equally suitable algae control fish that are interesting), I never add them until the tank is mature (2-3 months) and then only if the forms of algae they will eat are present. Without acceptable algae in the tank when they are introduced, otos frequently die within days. They will readily become accustomed to eating tablet/pellet foods along with the bottom catfish, but from my experience and others this does not occur at introduction. Without algae present when introduced they will almost certainly starve.

Second point on otos: they will only eat common green algae and diatoms (brown algae). I have never known, nor ever heard, of otos eating brush algae or hair algae. They may graze through it, but they will not eat it.

Last edited by Byron; 12-31-2009 at 11:05 AM..
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Old 12-31-2009, 12:28 PM   #17
 
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I would jsut like to add some things that byron probobly said 12 times 12 diffrent ways up there but here goes...

Angel has been 200% correct in all of her posts (cept the ottos i dont know anything bout those so cant vouch there) Ph ABSOLUTELY WILL NOT EFFECT ALGAE GROWTH. you say you have your lights on for 14 hrs a day or so and do add ferts but you dont do w/c. W/C during a cycle is more important than ever! im going to go out on a limb here and assume that your algae is caused by extreme imbalance of nutrient buildup from not doing any w/c. you have low-mid lighting and have been adding ferts ontop of the fish load which has been building up for three weeks, your plants arent able to use all of the nutrients in the tank becuase the lighting isnt intense enough nor is there any c02 injection. so the only way to sucessfully run this system is to perform water changes and try dosing the aquarium with fert maybe once a week and doing a 25-30%w/c every week or so and your algae should clear up.

in the mean time pick out what algae you can and do a w/c and keep it on a schedule and that algae will disappear.
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Old 12-31-2009, 01:25 PM   #18
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Byron View Post
I have followed this thread and feel I must correct some of the information. There is also a serious issue with the nitrite.

First, the algae. Soccermatt has a new tank which is still in the initial cycling. All such tanks experience fluctuating water conditions until the biological stability is reached post-cycle. "Cycled" as I'm using it means the biological state of the aquarium is basically stable and relative to the fish, plant, invertebrate and bacteria life in it at that time. Once this state is reached, it is easier to control algae because the biological stability will remain unless the aquarist does something or allows something to affect it negatively. This normally takes 2-3 months. As I use the term, it is more than just the initial cycle of ammonia/nitrite/nitrate.

In new tanks that have not yet cycled algae of various types frequently appears. A nitrite reading of 5 (which if accurate would kill any fish if there were any in the tank) clearly shows you are in the second stage of the cycle. I would suggest removing the algae from the glass and waiting things out. Algae is common in all aquaria that are balanced, but the balance keeps it in control. Your plants and light are fine to achieve this, provided nothing is done to negatively affect the process during and post-cycling.

Second, water changes. These can assist in algae control by maintaining stable water parameters. Once established, a tank with a moderate to heavy fish load must receive a weekly (at the least) partial water change, and it should be 50% or more. With fewer fish, and having plants, this can be lessened. But most of us like more fish in our tanks than a lax maintenance system can support healthily. A regular weekly pwc of 50-70% will not harm the fish, in fact they will thank you for it. I've written at length elsewhere on the issues with pollution and water changes.

During the cycling process, water changes do not hamper the cycling. Bacteria (nitrosomonas and nitrospira) colonize all hard surfaces under water. The substrate (gravel) should not be disturbed during cycling so as to encourage bacteria colonization; similarly the filter should not be rinsed or cleaned unless absolutely necessary to keep the water flow through the media--and this is normally not an issue at this stage when little life is in the tank.

Back to your nitrite reading; in a planted tank I would never expect to see nitrite readings even during cycling. Is the tank well planted? If it is, there should not even be a cycle at the beginning. I have set up dozens of new tanks with plants and fish added the first day and never had a cycle. I may have more comment when I know a bit more about the number and type of plants.

To the otos, these fish are extremely sensitive to water parameters and water quality and should never be added to a tank that is not biologically mature. Not only have countless other aquarists stated this, but I have experienced it first hand. When I set up a new tank, and if I intend to have otos (there are other equally suitable algae control fish that are interesting), I never add them until the tank is mature (2-3 months) and then only if the forms of algae they will eat are present. Without acceptable algae in the tank when they are introduced, otos frequently die within days. They will readily become accustomed to eating tablet/pellet foods along with the bottom catfish, but from my experience and others this does not occur at introduction. Without algae present when introduced they will almost certainly starve.

Second point on otos: they will only eat common green algae and diatoms (brown algae). I have never known, nor ever heard, of otos eating brush algae or hair algae. They may graze through it, but they will not eat it.
The tank is fairly well planted, heres a list of all the plants:

1 Java Fern
1 Cryptocoyne Balansae
2 Sagittaria Subulata
2 Hygrophila Difformis
2 Vallisneria Spiralis
1 Cryptocoryne Parva

I think why i might still get the high nitrite readings is because, i only added plants about a week to a week and a half ago, while nitrite was still at 5.

thanks for all the great info.
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Old 12-31-2009, 01:30 PM   #19
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by soccermatt View Post
The tank is fairly well planted, heres a list of all the plants:

1 Java Fern
1 Cryptocoyne Balansae
2 Sagittaria Subulata
2 Hygrophila Difformis
2 Vallisneria Spiralis
1 Cryptocoryne Parva

I think why i might still get the high nitrite readings is because, i only added plants about a week to a week and a half ago, while nitrite was still at 5.

thanks for all the great info.
Let's work out this nitrite problem. I mentioned fish dying from such high nitrite and your response doesn't make any mention of fish--are there fish in this tank? If not, how are you adding ammonia?

Of the plants you mention, Hygrophila and Vallisneria are relatively fast growers (= uses ammonia/ammonium and nutrients faster than slow plants like crypts) so that is good. Do you consider the tank well-planted, or heavily-planted? A few plants (one of each named) in a 29g is not heavily-planted, and that makes a big difference in cycling.

Byron.

Last edited by Byron; 12-31-2009 at 01:34 PM..
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Old 12-31-2009, 01:33 PM   #20
 
I am Fishless cycling. I couldn't find any pure ammonia so i was forced to use fish food. I add a couple of flakes every 12 hours.

Thanks
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