Troubleshooting Diatoms..please help.
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Troubleshooting Diatoms..please help.

This is a discussion on Troubleshooting Diatoms..please help. within the Beginner Freshwater Aquarium forums, part of the Freshwater Fish and Aquariums category; --> So i have been fighting diatoms for the last 2 months. I have re planted with faster growing plants, i have changed lighting, and ...

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Troubleshooting Diatoms..please help.
Old 11-05-2013, 07:31 PM   #1
 
Troubleshooting Diatoms..please help.

So i have been fighting diatoms for the last 2 months. I have re planted with faster growing plants, i have changed lighting, and i have changed feeding sched. Lets assume i haven't done a thing yet and please suggest what to check first and i will try to figure it out.

ammonia - 0ppm
nitrite - 0ppm
nitrate - 20ppm (2 days from weekly w/c)
phosphates - 0
i did not check the ph but it should be around 6.8ish as i run co2 daily (on the light timer)
2 t5ho bulbs (5000k and 6500k) run together for about 6 - 6.5 hrs a day
20 gal tall
8 phantom tetras
2 german blue rams
plants: Italian Val, Madagascar lace, Ozelot Sword, Moneywort, Bacopa, Crypt Parva, and Crypt Spiralis
2 HOB filters one is the aquaclear 20 gal filter the other is the aqueon quite flow 10
i have 2 root tabs (one under madagascar lace one under ozelot sword)
feed them once per day, spektrum new life pellets, usually gone in under 30 seconds

let me know where you would check first, thank you!!!!

Last edited by xfatdannx; 11-05-2013 at 07:33 PM..
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Old 11-05-2013, 07:50 PM   #2
 
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Silicates in your tap water??
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Old 11-06-2013, 02:48 AM   #3
 
is there a way for me to test that? guy at the LFS also suggested going R/O...thoughts or comments?
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Old 11-26-2013, 08:11 AM   #4
 
before going R/O i am trying one other thing. I have been told that i may have too low Co2 and should start my Co2 before i start my lights. Now my Co2 will come on an hour and a half before my lights, thus making an even shorter period in which the lights are on but Co2 is not at optimum levels.
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Old 11-26-2013, 08:57 AM   #5
 
I'm going with Boredomb on this one
A unique feature of diatom cells is that they are enclosed within a cell wall made of hydrated silicon dioxide which is chemically inert. This make testing challenging.
Is there a source of Silicates in the aquarium(Silica sand, etc)?
Is there Silicates in the source water?
Generally Diatom are self limiting as the silicon dioxide is used up so I would look for the silicate source

R

Last edited by rickey; 11-26-2013 at 08:59 AM.. Reason: sp
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Old 11-26-2013, 09:28 AM   #6
 
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With the exception of calcium sands and the like, almost all sands are silica sands. I wonder if the degree to which the sand is washed has an impact on diatoms.
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Old 11-26-2013, 10:24 AM   #7
 
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Originally Posted by jaysee View Post
With the exception of calcium sands and the like, almost all sands are silica sands. I wonder if the degree to which the sand is washed has an impact on diatoms.
The most common of sand in inland continental settings and non-tropical coastal settings is silica. Probably 90% of all sand is silica sand. The second most common type of sand is calcium carbonate. But I don't know if washing has an impact or not Why some silica sand are fine and another is a pain in the butt, it known in chemistry as the Universal Compound and there are somewhere around a dozen different oxide structure of silicon
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Old 11-26-2013, 10:53 AM   #8
 
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My guess is it has to do with the dust. Just a guess.
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Old 11-26-2013, 08:59 PM   #9
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xfatdannx View Post
is there a way for me to test that? guy at the LFS also suggested gong R/O...thoughts or comments?
Sorry for the long delay with me responding!

To answer your question yes there are test that you can use to test for silicates in your water. However I don't know at what level of silicates it take for diatoms to thrive just know they will as long as the source is there. After doing a quick search here is one test kit. : Aquarium Water Testing: Salifert Silicate Test Kit
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Old 11-26-2013, 09:33 PM   #10
 
Lamotte Silica test but it ain't cheap
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