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constant algae problem

This is a discussion on constant algae problem within the Beginner Freshwater Aquarium forums, part of the Freshwater Fish and Aquariums category; --> how many ottos would you suggest for 50g?...

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constant algae problem
Old 09-13-2009, 07:19 PM   #11
 
how many ottos would you suggest for 50g?
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Old 09-13-2009, 08:01 PM   #12
 
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how many ottos would you suggest for 50g?
It depends upon your algae and whether or not the tank is planted. A planted tank will have light and nutrients being added, so algae will appear though hopefully not excessively if things are in balance. If I were considering a 50g planted tank, I would set it up and leave it for a few weeks to become established and also to see what algae was likely. Remembering that otos (like Farlowella and Whiptail) only eat ordinary green and brown algae, not brush or hair, I would either get 1 or 3 Farlowella only, or 3 otos. I wouldn't get both because the algae won't be sufficient to sustain them. And while they will eat tablets (shrimp, veggie, whatever) if algae is not sufficient, they do spend their days grazing every surface and some algae should be available.

One reason you may have lost your otos is not having sufficient algae when you first introduced them to the tank; I have found that without algae in plenty, they frequently die within a few days. And I've read similar reports in articles. I always let a new tank become well established (3+ months) and ensure there is algae present before introducing otos, farlowella or whiptails.

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Old 09-13-2009, 09:04 PM   #13
 
the tank is planted with maybe 15 plants and theres deffinitly enough algae. i just looked up uv sterilizers and im thinking this could be useful if this gets worse or wont go away
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Old 09-14-2009, 11:22 AM   #14
 
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the tank is planted with maybe 15 plants and theres deffinitly enough algae. i just looked up uv sterilizers and im thinking this could be useful if this gets worse or wont go away
I would not go the road with UV sterilizers. Algae needs light and nutrients, and if there are plants then the light and nutrients are obviously more than what the plants can use (these have to balance the CO2 which comes from the fish and other biological processes in the aquarium). Reducing nutrients and light is the answer. All aquaria have algae, it just should be within reason.

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Old 09-14-2009, 12:56 PM   #15
 
So I figured out I shouldn’t have any carbon in my filter because that will absorb nutrients the plants need so im going to take that out today once I get home from school (in class right now). Im thinking maybe the lack of nutrients is stunting the plants growth and not allowing them to absorb other nutrients which the algae is using to grow. Im thinking ill replace the carbon with a polishing pad and something else.
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Old 09-14-2009, 01:05 PM   #16
 
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So I figured out I shouldn’t have any carbon in my filter because that will absorb nutrients the plants need so im going to take that out today once I get home from school (in class right now). Im thinking maybe the lack of nutrients is stunting the plants growth and not allowing them to absorb other nutrients which the algae is using to grow. Im thinking ill replace the carbon with a polishing pad and something else.
If this is a fairly heavily planted tank, I would not put anything in the filter other than the pads (plain white wool pads) and maybe media to encourage bacteria. Don't know if this is a canister or hang-on-back or whatever filter... but in a olanted aquarium the plants do the best job of filtration to make the water "clean" and the pads make it "clear" by removing suspended particulate matter as the water passes through the filter.

In most cases nutrients have to be added for the plants (tap water rarely contains all the essential macro- and micro-nutrients, and some come from the fish and biological processes in the tank, but not usually sufficient) so if algae is a problem without nutrients, it has to be the light and perhaps the CO2. The latter comes from the fish. But all this has to balance. I recomended light duration changes previously, that is probably the best way to go.

You do have a high pH, 8.2 you said. Algae seems to be more prevalent in high basic (alkaline) water, and I suspect it is hard water as well (?) which means more minerals for the algae. Once you get things in balance, and the light is the thing to experiment with, it will not be an issue.

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Old 09-14-2009, 11:33 PM   #17
 
its a 205 fluval canister filter. there are 3 baskets one of which is divided into 2 sections. ill call the baskets baskets A,B, and C. A being the top basket and c being the bottom basket. water flows through the filter starting at the bottom and ending at the top. basket C is divided into two parts C1 being the top of the basket and C2 being the bottom. in basket A and B there is fluval biommax biological rings. in basket C1 there is fluval carbon and in basket C2 there is a fluval water polishing pad. i just added the polishing pad today and when i was buying them i saw something called fluval prefilter and im thinking maybe this could be useful but i guess what ever you think is most useful i would try. iv been watching my new pearl gouramis that i got friday and i decided that they are my new clean up crew. theres no longer hair algae in the tank (im not sure if its because of them or if it just went away buy im happy). they eat so much algae though they they literaly poo decomposing algae. when the lfs gets new stock in wendsday hopefully they will get some ottos and ill get 3 of them.
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Old 09-15-2009, 10:37 AM   #18
 
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its a 205 fluval canister filter. there are 3 baskets one of which is divided into 2 sections. ill call the baskets baskets A,B, and C. A being the top basket and c being the bottom basket. water flows through the filter starting at the bottom and ending at the top. basket C is divided into two parts C1 being the top of the basket and C2 being the bottom. in basket A and B there is fluval biommax biological rings. in basket C1 there is fluval carbon and in basket C2 there is a fluval water polishing pad. i just added the polishing pad today and when i was buying them i saw something called fluval prefilter and im thinking maybe this could be useful but i guess what ever you think is most useful i would try. iv been watching my new pearl gouramis that i got friday and i decided that they are my new clean up crew. theres no longer hair algae in the tank (im not sure if its because of them or if it just went away buy im happy). they eat so much algae though they they literaly poo decomposing algae. when the lfs gets new stock in wendsday hopefully they will get some ottos and ill get 3 of them.
Fluval are reliable filters, and canister filters are best on planted aquaria, so good choice. The media in the bottom basket should be the ceramic discs; they never need replacing, and are intended to trap larger matter first to avoid clogging the pads that can then trap the very fine particles better. In between the bio-max is good, I have this in my canisters as it happens. I would remove the carbon and not replace it. The polishing pad is OK at the start, I used it when I first set up my 115g, then took it out after about 3 weeks. The fine filter pads that are plain wool will do the job, and save money. The polishing pad, like carbon, has to be replaced regularly so why waste the money when it's not necessary.

Just a thought on the otos, only get them if you think they're needed; if there are fish in the tank eating algae, fine. No point in adding more bioload unnecessarily. But if the algae is there, they will do the job (on regular green and brown algae).

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Old 09-15-2009, 07:01 PM   #19
 
well i thought they were kind of cute in the first place and the gouramis dont get it all so i figure why not have a little more algae clean up crew. i also read earlier that marimo algae balls could eliminate some algae because they are using the same nutrients. is this true because if so ill definitely get some because they look cool and i read they float and sink depending on the light and roll because of some water currents. who makes these fine wool pads and what is the name of your canister filter?
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Old 09-15-2009, 08:00 PM   #20
 
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well i thought they were kind of cute in the first place and the gouramis dont get it all so i figure why not have a little more algae clean up crew. i also read earlier that marimo algae balls could eliminate some algae because they are using the same nutrients. is this true because if so ill definitely get some because they look cool and i read they float and sink depending on the light and roll because of some water currents. who makes these fine wool pads and what is the name of your canister filter?
In a planted tank, the plants should use the nutrients. if the light and nutrients (CO2, macro- and micro-nutrients) are in balance, algae will not be a problem [it will be there, but not as a problem]. Adding something that uses nutrients instead of algae is going to fight against your plants. I wouldn't do that. The whole point of natural aquariums is that nature is in balance and plants and fish are healthy. Anything that is going to interfere negatively with any part of that balance is not recommended.

I have Eheim filters on two tanks and a Rena XP3 on the 115g. The white wool pads (I think they're called "wool") come with the filters, and you can buy replacement pads. You can also make one out of regular filter floss, which works; the advantage of the pre-made pads is that they will fit the water column and not allow water to bypass the pad.

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