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MaiCarInMtl 12-19-2006 06:00 PM

White hair/algae? What is this and how can I get rid of it?
Hi there,

I just got a new 10 litre (3.65 gal) acrylic tank 2 weeks ago, filled it with water (treated with salt and dechlorinator), put just over an inch of gravel at the bottom, have a little decoration my fish can swim through, have a fake plant int here too. I also have a small filter that came with the tank. I added 1 betta (the only resident of the tank) a week ago. I've since added methylene blue just incase the fish came home with some nasties from the pet shop. The temperature is around 24-26 celcius (about 75 farenheit).

I didn't notice these white strand-like things (hair-like) stuff until about 3 days after I added in the fish. It was the decoration at first and now it seems to have taken over the tank :( The tank is near a window but there is no direct sunlight (and the blinds are closed). I have this tiny light I put on sometimes, but other than that, the biggest light there is nearby is my desk lamp. I had to cut off one of the 3 fins of the filter because the current was too strong for the betta (he was getting stuck or thrown about).

So, can anyone tell me what this might be? And how to get rid of it? (please excuse the quality of the pictures, I can only do so much with my old webcam)

Thanks for your help!

Lupin 12-19-2006 06:14 PM

Hi and welcome aboard.:wave:

I can't say what those white strands are without clearer pics.:shake:

I'd stopped using salt. Salt IMO will have adverse effects on your betta. How do you maintain the tank? What are your water parameters?:)

Don't use methylene blue unless necessary. It can harm your filter's beneficial bacteria. It appears your tank hasn't cycled at all. Yyou'll need a test kit and make sure your ammonia and nitrites stay zero. If they are at detectable level, do partial water changes. Nitrates should never stray off the level of 40. 10-20 ppm would be the safe level.

Derek-M 12-19-2006 06:16 PM

It looks a bit like fungus that forms when there is uneaten food lying about in the tank,but I can't be 100% sure as the pics are not too clear

MaiCarInMtl 12-19-2006 07:25 PM

I'll try to take clearer pics tonight if I can get someone with a digicam to come over *crossing my fingers*

I've only been able to test the pH and that's at 7.2-7.4 I brought some water to the store when I bought the fish and they said I didn't need to test it... I'll be going to the stores this weekend and picking up a nitrite (and ammonia) testing kit.

I won't be adding any more methylene blue unless I find my fish needs it. I just wanted to make sure he didn't being any nasties home with him. What about aquari-sol?

When I clean the tank this weekend (I need to find some huge container so I can pre-treat the water first), should I clean everything out really well with just hot water (and scrub, scrub, scrub) or as some people suggest here and there: use vinegar or bleach and rinse VERY well?

Thanks again for your help - I just want to provide the best for my baby. :D

Lupin 12-19-2006 09:52 PM

Don't clean everything. Your tank should be fine. We just need to know what those white strands are and the causes. The causes can be addressed without stripping down the whole tank.

crazie.eddie 12-19-2006 11:00 PM

(Message deleted by poster)

Lupin 12-19-2006 11:12 PM

That's odd. The images weren't working for me.:squint:

MaiCarInMtl 12-20-2006 10:38 AM

Well, I have no pictures yet! I had asked for someone to bring by their digital camera when they came by last night and they forgot it on their desk... :evil: *sigh* Better luck tonight?

I looked at the pics (various pics on the links and done websearches) and I'm not too sure what kind of algae is it. Most algaes seem to be green. Mine is more white or greyish. They almos tlook like little individual strands too (not branching out in y-shapes). I'm stuck between hair algae or maybe fuzz but even then, I'm not sure.

Someone mentionned the possibility of over-feeding. But how do I know if I'm over feeding my fish. I know he's not obese, he seems just the right size for a betta (I usually feed him 6-7 of those tiny little balls/pellets) and on weekends I give him a few freeze-dried blood worms instead.

Thanks again for your help, I really hope I can get some pictures tonight, this is really bothering me! (And get some testing equipment - other than just pH - ASAP!)

Derek-M 12-20-2006 10:54 AM

Is there any of this white fuzz on the gravel?

MaiCarInMtl 12-20-2006 12:28 PM

The white stuff seems to be everywhere (sides of the tank, plan, gravel, decoration, filter - a little less but still there)... But I haven't noticed any on the thermometer... It seems more concentrate on the sides of the tanks and the (fake) plant.

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