brown algae/ high nitrates - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
 
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post #1 of 6 Old 09-29-2010, 10:34 PM Thread Starter
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Question brown algae/ high nitrates

Hi my aquarium is new its a 55 gallon and is about 2 months old i currently have 5 fish 1 jack dempsey(4in) 1 Green terror(4in) 2 convicts(4in) 1 pleco(3 in) I know i am going to have to find new homes for some these fish soon i am planning on keeping the JD and pleco only, i test my water every week and every time i go i have high nitrates i dont know the exact measure just that its high, i know that this is probably why i have brown algae, my question is how do i lower my nitrates when im doing a 1/3 water change every week and how do i get rid of my brown algae (brown algae is only on my structures not glass yet) i notice that when my cichlids eat pellets alot of the food goes into the tank because they are prety messy could this be why my nitrates are s high?
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post #2 of 6 Old 09-30-2010, 02:48 AM
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Hi my aquarium is new its a 55 gallon and is about 2 months old i currently have 5 fish 1 jack dempsey(4in) 1 Green terror(4in) 2 convicts(4in) 1 pleco(3 in) I know i am going to have to find new homes for some these fish soon i am planning on keeping the JD and pleco only, i test my water every week and every time i go i have high nitrates i dont know the exact measure just that its high, i know that this is probably why i have brown algae, my question is how do i lower my nitrates when im doing a 1/3 water change every week and how do i get rid of my brown algae (brown algae is only on my structures not glass yet) i notice that when my cichlids eat pellets alot of the food goes into the tank because they are prety messy could this be why my nitrates are s high?
Yes, the fish you have are,, as you have noted,messy eaters. Removing more water during water changes ,and vaccuming one half the gravel and a different one half each week will help.
I would aim for 50 percent water changes once each week.
Gravel will need to be vaccumed each week for the fish you have and adding a second filter may be needed as well depending on the size filter you are currently running.
For this particular tank with fish you mentioned,,,you would want a filter capable of filtering/moving ,six to eight times the volume of water the tank holds each hour.
Example...55 x 8 = 440 gallons per hour.Filter material will need to be cleaned frequently in old aquarium water that you take out during water changes(not tapwater), or... you can clean it in dechlorinated water in a bucket.
Just swish the filter pads,sponges,cartridges ,etc around in the water and stick em back in. Replace the filter material only when it begins to fall apart ,and only replace half at any one time. Can replace the other half the following week.

The most important medication in your fish medicine cabinet is.. Clean water.
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post #3 of 6 Old 09-30-2010, 03:11 AM
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Yes, the fish you have are,, as you have noted,messy eaters. Removing more water during water changes ,and vaccuming one half the gravel and a different one half each week will help.
I would aim for 50 percent water changes once each week.
Gravel will need to be vaccumed each week for the fish you have and adding a second filter may be needed as well depending on the size filter you are currently running.
For this particular tank with fish you mentioned,,,you would want a filter capable of filtering/moving ,six to eight times the volume of water the tank holds each hour.
Example...55 x 8 = 440 gallons per hour.Filter material will need to be cleaned frequently in old aquarium water that you take out during water changes(not tapwater), or... you can clean it in dechlorinated water in a bucket.
Just swish the filter pads,sponges,cartridges ,etc around in the water and stick em back in. Replace the filter material only when it begins to fall apart ,and only replace half at any one time. Can replace the other half the following week.

Should also note that brown algae will likely subside once the tank is a few months old and water is kept clean through measures mentioned.

The most important medication in your fish medicine cabinet is.. Clean water.
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post #4 of 6 Old 09-30-2010, 04:21 PM
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The brown algae are diatoms. Very common with new tank set ups. Will go away on it's own when the tank becomes more established.
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post #5 of 6 Old 09-30-2010, 05:36 PM Thread Starter
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so i dont need to buy more filter media until it starts ripping just need to clean it in dechlorinated water every week or every month? btw i have a 55 aqueon powerfilter and a 350 magnum marineland canister filter
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post #6 of 6 Old 10-01-2010, 12:05 AM
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so i dont need to buy more filter media until it starts ripping just need to clean it in dechlorinated water every week or every month? btw i have a 55 aqueon powerfilter and a 350 magnum marineland canister filter

I would try and clean the filter material each week, it only takes a few seconds to swish it around and knock most of the accumulated crud off of it.When it gets to the point that the material is falling apart,,then replace the material in one filter, and likewise in the other filter, but alternate so that you don't replace all the material from both filters at one time.Good bacteria will not all be destroyed at one time in this way and the filter material is home for a considerable amount of this good bacteria along with unfortunately ,,the crud mentioned. You don't need to clean the material excessively, just swishing it around will remove enough. The two filters you have , should work but were it me,, I might replace the aqueon if it begins to fail with an Emperor 280 by Marineland.

The most important medication in your fish medicine cabinet is.. Clean water.
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