Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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Tarutan 05-28-2013 08:07 PM

Gunk on leaves
There is this fuzzy gunk collecting on the leaves of my plants. Are these beneficial bacteria or just gunk collecting on them? Should I gently scrub them off or leave it?

Tarutan 05-28-2013 08:37 PM

I also noticed the gunk is growing on the exposed roots, sand surface, driftwood, and castle decor. It looks a little bit like fungus

Tarutan 05-28-2013 11:32 PM

Byron 05-29-2013 10:42 AM

This is a form of algae. Algae can be dealt with by balancing the light and nutrients so plants out-c ompete the algae. To work this out, we will need some data.

Light: type, watts, etc. Duration each day. And tank size.

Nutrients: What fertilizers are you using, and how much/often?

Water Changes: How often and how much of the tank volume?

Plant species.


Tarutan 05-29-2013 07:55 PM

In a 10 gallon tank:

Lighting is a full spectrum fluorescent bulb. I don't know exact details of the bulb itself but the fixture says 120volts 19watts 20". My window faces east so when the sun comes up it gets alot of indirect light so I turn on the light fixture at noon when the sun is over the house. I then leave it on till about 6pm, about 6 hours. The sun sets around 7pm in which the tank goes into total darkness for the next 12 hours.

I am using API Leafzone 5ml a week after water changes. This is the only fertilizer I use, no root tabs or anything. The plants are rooted in sand substrate and driftwood.

I change the water once a week and have been doing 30-40%.

I have 2 Anubias barteri broad leaf. 5 water wisterias. A small bunch of cryptocyrnes and a moss ball.

Byron 05-29-2013 08:13 PM

This should be easy to fix. Anubias is a shade plant, so getting some floating plants will probably solve it. I would also consider a different fertilizer. API LeafZone only has iron and potassium, but plants need 15 other nutrients. And an excess of iron can bring on this algae. Seachem's Flourish Comprehensive Supplement is what I use; it is more expensive (I think) but you use so very little--in your 10g about 1/4 tsp a week--so it lasts much longer.

Everything else sound fine.:-)


JDM 05-30-2013 09:35 AM

I can't really tell from the pictures but that almost looks more like a sediment issue. Perhaps there is food settling on the leaves and this is just from decomposition. Does it rub off easily?

I had something very similar in a plant only tank that I just cleaned off yesterday. The filter was not running so stuff from my extensive landscaping last week (new substrate) settled and just needed to be rubbed off.

Oh, ditto Byrons comments about the fertilizer.


Tarutan 05-30-2013 10:01 AM

That makes sense if it is decomposing food. Now that you mention it, the fuzz is mostly just on the areas uneaten food falls on. I am having an issue with feeding flakes. The frog finishes all his pellets but the hob filters surface current rotates the flakes around too much for the fish to eat and most of it gets pushed under the water. I don't know what to do about that

JDM 05-30-2013 10:35 AM

Feed with the filter off. Or if you can feed in an area where the surface doesn't move as much... but it's not a large tank.


Tarutan 06-01-2013 11:10 AM

I picked up some seachem prime and flourish comprehensive. I am feeling good about the seachem brand. Should I be refrigerating them since such a tiny amount is used and I got a large bottle to last longer?

I also picked up some water sprites! They were hard to find. Will they do best floating or can I root them in the fine sand substrate I have?

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