Fungus or mold growing on rocks
I added some lace rock about a week ago to my newly setup African Cichlid Tank. Now it is growing what looks like a white fungus on the rocks. I actually thought it was a discoloration in the rock at first because it grows in a bubble shape and looks like part of the rock. I poked it with a knife to see if it was rock or something else. It was soft, white and stringy. The tank is currently cycling and has no fish. I had a bacterial bloom and added a UV sterilizer. The bloom is gone and water is clear. I only tested Nitrite which was at 5ppm. Anyone know what this might be and how do I get rid of it? I'm concerned that when I put my fish in the tank they will get this fungus. Fish are currently in quarantine.
Now in NO EXPERT at all, but when I had this in a new tank, when i added even newer wood,I found it to be completely harmless, so much so that some of the fish, gouramis, even had a munch on it.
I can't say yours is the same etc but thats my experience with it.
This is very different from wood fungus.
Wood, being an organic substance, can have any number of bacteria, fungi, etc. living in it. These can leech out when the wood is placed under water. Some may be harmless, but some are toxic. Without examination by a microbiologist, you can't say either way.
I've never seen what the photos show with rock, but as lace rock is highly porous, it is possible that some type of bacteria or fungus got into it from wherever it came from. Until you identify what this may be, it is impossible to say if it is toxic or not.
Re the UV sterilizer, that of course kills all bacteria in the water column. Are you still using it? I've no idea if this might allow something else to proliferate, since the bacteria is gone. Just a thought.
The UV sterilizer will only kill the heterotrophic bacteria in the water column but not the beneficial nitrifying autotrophic bacteria that are housed in the filter, on the walls, the gravel, the rock, virtually everywhere except in the water column so I don't think what I have growing on my rocks is due to all of the bacteria being gone. It also seems to be only growing on the new rock I just put in the tank and not on the rock I put in 2 weeks ago. I think it is some sort of fungus or mold that was on the new rock. I have researched the internet but haven't really found what this could be. If anyone else has had this before I really could use your help. I have never seen anything like this before. The rock is Lace Rock for my African Cichlid tank I'm setting up.
After a lot of research I believe this is a slime mold. Good news is I syphoned it off the rocks during a water change and it never came back. At least not yet.
I might be tempted to pressure wash the rock should it return (carwash).
Certainly would for any other rock added in future.
Are you by chance cycling with ammonia?
I have shortened the time needed to cycle with this method by reducing the amount of ammonia by 1/2 once nitrites appear.
Dosing full amount of ammonia after nitrites appear can lengthen the process considerably ,sometimes,,,indefinately it seem's.:roll:
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