brown slime - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 9 Old 10-26-2007, 11:16 AM Thread Starter
beetlebz's Avatar
brown slime

soooo yay! i finally got my 110 gallon tank *mostly* done. all thats left is to get one of those big driftwood root looking things to replace the ceramic house and add some loaches.

but... now that my tank is nearing the end of its cycle (down to 0 ammonia, 0 nitrites) im starting to get a brown slime on the discharges of my HOB power filter, and around the top of the fake plants directly underneath the discharges.

now that my 29 is coming to the end of its cycle, its doing the same thing!! brown slime on the plants and a bit on my triton statue. what gives? is this algea?

my 29 gal has the stock hood and light on it still so its probably 20-25 watts, and my 110 has 2 40w day-max bulbs (FW full spectrum) all 3 tanks are on a timer, lights on from 2pm - 2am. and this is a dramatic DECREASE from the 16-18 hours they were on before. Its like, when i started leaving the lights on less this started ><

oh, and before you guys ask, theres no such thing as overfeeding a tank with severums in it LOL

Dedicated, converted, lowes / home depot bulb buyer!
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post #2 of 9 Old 10-26-2007, 12:51 PM
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Well, this is a common symptom of tanks reaching maturity. This is actually a good sign (provided the algae isn't completely overtaking your tank). It's called Diatomic Algae. It tends to appear in the 2 - 12 week period, and will oftentimes disappear almost as quickly as it appeared when your tank's conditions completely stabilize.

Ottos clear this stuff out quickly apparently.

Good luck!

Tanks: 40 gal FW setup, 10 gal Reef tank.

Old BC8 setup:
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post #3 of 9 Old 10-30-2007, 07:18 AM
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Yeah that sludge seems to hang around but it will go, if not try a sucker fish of some sort.

wondering is the beauty of mystery
Check out my 29g grow out (quite a mixed bunch)
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post #4 of 9 Old 10-30-2007, 02:50 PM Thread Starter
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I got a pleco, no dice lol I might grab a couple otos when I see them next at a pet store. Im surprised the rainbow shark isnt grazing on it <shrug>

thanks for the input guys :)

Dedicated, converted, lowes / home depot bulb buyer!
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post #5 of 9 Old 10-30-2007, 03:39 PM
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Otos will eat it, BN will eat it but not much else. The diatoms are a result of silicates in the plastic, glass and almost everything else we put in the tanks including the gravel. Once the slime coat gets established, I know, terrible way to describe it but it is the natural coating that everything gets on it after the tank gets established.

It does suprise me however that you are getting it on the outflow of your filter. Most of the time it is found in areas of low current and not in direct current. I can actually trigger it to happen by putting a glazed ceramic in my tanks in a slow area of the tank but once the ceramic has been in there for a good 2 months it goes away and never comes back.

Here is a link that describes them better. Their skeleton is actually make of silica which is why they die off after the silica is no longer readily available to them in an established tank because of the slime coating. And no, the slime coating we use for the fish won't likely help with this.
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post #6 of 9 Old 10-30-2007, 06:03 PM
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there are many different products out there such as seachem phosgaurd as well as the PURA filtration pad by magnavore that are very affective at removing silicates as well as other excess organics from aquarium water, another suggestion would be to use ro water for future water changes as the silicates found in tap water will sometimes cause an "aftershock" (that's how i describe it), or second outbreak of the diatoms. All in all though, it's something that probably 4 out of 5 tanks go through as they cycle, no cause for alarm
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post #7 of 9 Old 10-31-2007, 02:57 PM Thread Starter
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actually F4A its ONLY in high flow areas! the outflow of the HOB, i found some on the back side of the discharge pipe on my canister (which is partially submerged) and ALL over the tops of the fake plants, but only those that get decent water flow.

but i dont doubt thats what it is. Itll go away or i will get a few otos to live with my severums lol

Dedicated, converted, lowes / home depot bulb buyer!
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post #8 of 9 Old 11-01-2007, 01:29 AM
fish_4_all's Avatar
I would highly doubt diatoms then as you said. They would be washed off as they come off extremely easy and the high flow would not let them stay there for long. Brown hair algae, dirty green hair algae maybe. This would be most likely from a nutrient shortage/overage or simply because of higher light at that level of the tank.

I am not sure what eats that type of algae as I have it one of my tanks, the snail tank, and not even the snails will eat it where they will eat any other kind I have in there. I think it is because all I really dose in there is Iron to protect the snails and is likely from an imbalance but I want the algae for the snails so I just deal with it.
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post #9 of 9 Old 11-01-2007, 11:26 AM
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coley's Avatar
I noticed the same thing on my HOB filter yesterday. It was built up and stalling the Bio Wheel. I haven't cleaned the filter body in awhile and I plan to do that today. I haven't noticed it anywhere else yet.

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