Should I perform a 100% water change? - Page 2 - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #11 of 40 Old 02-13-2014, 05:10 AM
i've never heard of anyone clearing up greenwater with water changes :(

i have heard lots of people at a loss trying to deal with this by preforming water changes, ... after awhile when they're at a loss and about time to give up, either that it's a problem they'll always have, or give up the hobby they start asking questions and find a blackout is recommended ... but not always successful. those who have had success with it swear by it, ... my guess, they're using thicker blankets.
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post #12 of 40 Old 02-13-2014, 06:25 AM
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UV is a guarantee.

125 - BGK, chanchito cichlid, pictus cats, silver dollars, palmas bichir
125 - cichlids (severums, bolivian rams, chocolate), rainbows ( turquoise, red), loaches (angelicus, zebra, kuhli and horseface), plecos (BN, RL and clown), denison barbs, tiretrack eel, pearl gouramis, betta
90 - Congo tetras, african knife, upside down cats, spotted ctenopoma, kribensis, delhezzi bichir
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post #13 of 40 Old 02-13-2014, 07:07 AM
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Thanks everyone. I did a little more research last night trying to solve my problem and I'm coming up with very little new information. I can't figure out what type of algae this is. Flear, it doesn't appear to be any of the ones you listed and it's not green water. This attaches to the glass, plastic and very little to the gravel. It doesn't appear to be attaching to the driftwood (or the critters are keeping it at bay there). And, it's very easy to wipe off and doesn't need to be scrubbed.

From what I read a UV sterilizer works well on green water but not on algae that attaches to surfaces. Thanks for the suggestion, though, Jaysee. I still need to do more research on letting the algae bloom crash, though.

At this point I think I'll start a new thread for lighting recommendations and just clean the tank more frequently. The water is crystal clear when you can see it through the glass!
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post #14 of 40 Old 02-13-2014, 07:17 AM
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I know the OP had green water - I thought that you did too. I know there are people who think that UV helps prevent other kinds of algae too, by killing the cells in the water before they can get a foothold somewhere. Admittedly that's not something I've looked into very much.

125 - BGK, chanchito cichlid, pictus cats, silver dollars, palmas bichir
125 - cichlids (severums, bolivian rams, chocolate), rainbows ( turquoise, red), loaches (angelicus, zebra, kuhli and horseface), plecos (BN, RL and clown), denison barbs, tiretrack eel, pearl gouramis, betta
90 - Congo tetras, african knife, upside down cats, spotted ctenopoma, kribensis, delhezzi bichir
2.5 - betta
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post #15 of 40 Old 02-13-2014, 07:34 AM
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Yes, I'm sorry...I hi-jacked Willertac's thread. From what I read the UV could be a good option for them.

Flear, you mentioned cyanobacteria and I think that nailed it. I found this description that is dead on since I know my lighting is too strong and my water is hard:

An aquarium may occasionally break out with an infestation of cyanobacteria, a slimy growth that grows more rapidly than algae. It may be green, blue, black or red in color. Unlike algae, cyanobacteria is extremely easy to remove but very difficult to control. Even if every bit is removed, it can quickly grow back in only a few days. Cyanobacteria thrives in well-lit aquariums that have excessive levels of phosphate in the water. Cyanobacteria can also plague marine aquariums in which the coral is cleaned frequently. In order to bring cyanobacteria under control, the aquarium must be cleaned thoroughly. The amount of light the tank receives is dramatically reduced for several weeks. An organic chemical such as **** is also added to the water to inhibit the growth of cyanobacteria. Several treatments may be necessary before the problem is brought under control.
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post #16 of 40 Old 02-13-2014, 09:40 AM
adventurelady, ... try green dust algae, ... only other one that comes to mind, ... very easy to wipe off the glass

another one to ignore and will kill itself if left alone.

as for cyanobacteria, ... all i've got to go on is guesses.
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post #17 of 40 Old 02-25-2014, 06:33 PM Thread Starter
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I actually didn't mind being hi-jacked. It was enlightening. I'm going to try the blackout for my Greenwater. I also had easily removable growth on my tank that grew so much it looked like hair, but that was removed when the Greenwater came around. And now I shall wait.

Don't be so abSERd!
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post #18 of 40 Old 02-26-2014, 09:19 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Flear View Post
the blackout theory on getting rid of greenwater is based on this.

zero light, not a flashlight, not even moonlight, wrap your tank in a thick blanket so no light gets in at all. ... wait 3+ days

the greenwater (phytoplankton in your water) starves to death based on zero light received.
your plants (vascular) is able to store internal sugars (like we have fat) to survive this extended time without light. ... in essence your plants survive only because of these internal energy stores, else they would die too.

now things like mosses and crystalwort (Riccia fluitans) there are others but these are what comes to my mind first, ... these are non-vascular, and so energy stores are similar to algae, don't bet on it, and (i'm no expert) i'm not sure how well these will do, or if they will survive.

now this part is all good, (the blackout), but you have zero idea how things are going in the tank because you can't check, if you look, you need to turn on a light, or a flashlight, and your starving greenwater (phytoplanton) will thank you for some "food" (light energy) and you're back to day 1 when you wrap up your tank again.

those that have done this though successfully are very happy with the results, ... those that have done this unsuccessfully (not dark enough - thick enough blanket, etc.) become disillusioned.

and those that have gone the other route (ignore it, the algae bloom gets totally out of control then crashes) also like this route, ... more patience is needed as it gets scary before it gets better

Should I leave the tank running while covered? I don't want a fire hazard or anything. The fish have been relocated; it was 2 tiny fish in a pretty big tank for their size.

Don't be so abSERd!
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post #19 of 40 Old 02-27-2014, 03:30 PM
To control cyano (and most nusiance algaes for that matter) you kill the light and suspend all feeding.

that usually clears up the tank in a few days but it cand take a couple of weeks in "stubborn" cases.

Then after it has all died off you have two points. One with lighting and feeding which grows the cyano/algae and one with no lighting and feeding where the cyano/algae dies off.

From that point you resume with 1/2 lighting and 1/2 feeding and adjust until you hit a point where plants (corals in marine systems) thrive but the cyano/algae does not.

So actually IMHO it is fairly easy to control.

Still that's just my .02

maintain Fw and marine system with a strong emphasis on balanced, stabilized system that as much as possible are self substaning.

have maintained FW systems for up to 9 years with descendants from original fish and marine aquariums for up to 8 years.

With no water changes, untreated tap water, inexpensive lighting by first starting the tank with live plants (FW) or macro algae( marine)

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post #20 of 40 Old 02-28-2014, 12:15 PM
i'm not a big enough expert on clearing greenwater aside from personal experience (ignore it and the greenwater crashes itself)

the blackout method, ... if you're removing the fish i would be less enthusiastic, ... as the fish come out, the chances of bringing with them some phytoplankton (your greenwater) ... and having greenwater come back with the fish when moving it back into the tank, ...

just my concern.

otherwise, i'm just going with hunches as for personal opinions (just personal options really) i won't advocate the blackout method after hearing so many people try it and for one reason or another it didn't work.

doesn't mean the method was unsuccessful, doesn't mean that at all, they never went into details about why it didn't work, ... like anything, if your tank crashes, if you knew why you would correct the issue instead of asking "why, what happened, i'm so devastated", ... it's one of those things, that the people who tried the blackout method didn't know what went wrong and the greenwater continued.

as for what i would do (if you haven't cleared your greenwater problem already)

turn off the electrical, (heater lights, etc.)
water filter &/or airstones if you have them i would leave on.

or simplify everything (i think this has been mentioned somewhere)


get a quality UV sterilizer.

i say quality (again going on what i have heard) they move too much water through not enough UV to do it's job properly for the cheaper ones (either too fast of a water flow or not strong enough UV light - some combination)

so get a quality one.

do i know if this will work, no
do i think it would help, ... yes, ...
do i know how long it would take, ... no idea.

if you are concerned about additional benefits, (redox/ORP) it is also known to help in these areas to provide a healthier tanks, = healthier fish


as your greenwater is similar to bacteria in the water (i'm oversimplifying things), ... it will eventually run through the UV sterilizer and die off is the idea behind this
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algae , cloudy

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