Growing Algae - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 6 Old 09-23-2007, 09:24 PM Thread Starter
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Growing Algae

Yah, I actually want it to grow fast enough to partially feed my mystery snails. I switched the snails to a different tank today and moved my loaches to the tank they were in. The loaches were moved to eat all the pond snails infesting the snail tank. Well the tank I moved them into has a lot of algae in it and guess what. The snails have not stopped grazing on it like a heard of cows for over an hour. They love it and are cleaning the glass beter than it has been for quite a while.

The question is, is there any real way to grow algae, the soft stuff, fast enough to actually feed them or would they keep the glass too clean for it to really grow very well?

If they are going to eat it too fast, what is the best way to grow it on rocks or something else without putting it out in the sun?

Would a glass jar in the window grow any kind of actual algae or only make green water? ( I know, algae bloom/green water but I can't feed green water to the snails. )
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post #2 of 6 Old 09-24-2007, 03:33 PM
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i can only thing of stones in a jar,either on
the windowledge or out side.
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post #3 of 6 Old 09-25-2007, 01:09 AM
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I try to put a bunch of stones in a pail and placed them under the sun though.:) That's how I supply my hillstream loaches with algae.

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post #4 of 6 Old 10-29-2007, 04:14 PM
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The methods I use for algae growth for keeping mystery and apple snails... I have 2 that work well. 1. I work with plant fertilizer. I dose the tank about 1/2 of what is called for in a heavily planted tank, and I only do it about once/twice each month. The added "plant food" without the plants to eat it will usually encourage the algae growth naturally without polluting my tank or harming my fish. 2. I find foods with a higher phosphate content. If there are plants in the tank, they will use some of the phosphate, but if the phosphate is increased slightly (it doesn't take much) then it tends to trigger an algae bloom.

One thing that is important to note: not all snails will eat all kinds of algae, and different methods of growing algae will produce different species of algae. Be careful whatever method you use, that the snails will eat the species of algae that you encourage before it gets out of control. Using any of the mentioned methods would be pretty easy to get it under control quickly if you catch it soon enough. If the snails haven't munched on it within the first few days, chances are they won't at all and you'll want to remove it and stop whatever method you are using to grow it.
Please keep us posted on how it works out for you, and which methods you have success with.

Dawn Moneyhan
Aquatics Specialist/Nutritionist
Juneau, WI
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post #5 of 6 Old 10-30-2007, 12:04 AM Thread Starter
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Well most likely I will try to grow it in a jar with some rocks on it and not in the tank. Snails are sesceptible enough to bad water, I don't want to harm them just to try and give them some natural food.

I think I read that if you get a half or 1 gallon jar and dose it with lots of nitrates or use Miracle grow all by itself without plants that the algae will bloom, which is what you don't want but as the algae goes through the next stages it will grow on the rocks and driftwood and not bloom so bad.

I will see what works when the sun comes back out this summer. I tried an experiment a week or so ago and it failed miserably but it is cold now and the sun has been hiding all the time. Might try it indoors just to see if it works.I also thought about making my own "Nori" sheets by using the green water when it is as thick as possible. I would simply strain it and dehydrate the algae into thick sheets and feed it to them that way.
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post #6 of 6 Old 11-11-2007, 07:14 AM
If you want algee, its easy, yes get a jar, drill a small hole for some airline tubing and place tightly through the hole in the middle of the top of the lid. then attach an air pump. I'd stay away from plant fertilizer unless it's for aquariums and even then there is no need to use it. Get 2 pieces of dog food or banana peel. Any organic matter will start the algee growing process. Also place it in direct sunlight, by week three you will have the sides covered in so much algee you will not know what to do with it all. Also if the water you fill the jar is from a pond in the area that would be even better, all the different algees will be present in the water to grow. you might get some fun little organisms but I never have lol! I've even grown snails in the jars with the algee but it was summer outside. And I monitored the ammonia.
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