Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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Kaddock 03-07-2009 01:01 PM

planted tank overwhelmed by algae
ok, so my 2 gallon planted tank always does well for a couple of months, then is overwhelmed by algae. i am using algaefix, but although it claims to not harm plants, they are yellowing, and the algae isn't dying (although the algae fix seemed to work in my 45 gallon)... how can i keep algae under control??? this will be the second time the habitat has gone under if i can't lick it this time... :cry:

Freddiesbuns 03-08-2009 12:14 PM

The only effective way I've found against algae is a good scraping. Using chemicals is always hazardous for the plants and fishes, it's better not to use them. Is your tank near a source of sunlight?

Mikaila31 03-08-2009 12:27 PM

Small planted tanks are much more difficult that larger tanks to maintain. I tried a 2.5 gal once and it ended horribly.

We need more info on the tank. How much light? what kinda plants? what are you using and fertilizers? what kinda substrate?

Kaddock 03-08-2009 04:20 PM

the conditions are totally non-ideal for plants, i have a mixture of gravel, glass and foams as substrate... but the plants are thriving! however so is the algae. the light is one of those spiral lights you can use to replace a regular light bulb that are more energy efficient, i believe they are gas lights. all the plants i have used them with seem to love them. the problem with the algae is that it comes back so fast i can't keep up! i just scraped and did a water change less than a week ago, and it's already back. :| i have not used any fertilizers yet.

Mikaila31 03-08-2009 08:49 PM

How many watts is the light?

onefish2fish 03-08-2009 09:25 PM

i dont have experience with algae fix but in a small tank its very possible you over dosed causing the plants to yellow

catfishtabbi 03-08-2009 09:38 PM

It soucds as if its been up and cycled for a while, yes/ no? If this is the case phosphates may be in your water which algea thrive on.If your using tap water call your water dept and ask for an anaalysis, this could reveal negative findings and the root cause of your algea. Since your filter is so small it would be more fesable to use r/o water, in comparison to adding phosguard to filter media, store bought is convienient and relatively inexpensive.This info is considering your tank is cycled, not overcleaned and is not having bacterial blooms.Post and let us know what you figure out.

Oh, algeafix is simply a detergent; verified by poision control, it is good for taking your plants to the sink and cleaning with it. But it won't fix the root cause of your algea problem.

Kaddock 03-09-2009 02:43 AM

Mikaila31: the light is 40 watts i believe, is that too much? :-?

: thanks for the helpful info! phosphates huh? yes the tank has been up and running and cycled for a while now. no bacterial blooms, just fast growing algae!!! so you suggest i just use store bought water instead of tap? that's pure genius my friend! i honestly never considered it. i wonder if that really is the problem though, because i used to keep a thriving bunch of java moss in this aquarium with a different light bulb, and never had any algae problems... but that was in a different part of town. the guy at the fish store suggested that planted tanks do best to fend off algae when there is enough plants to deprive it of it's nutrients... does this hold any truth? i will try the spring water tomorrow when i change the water! thanks, and i will keep you updated on the situation ;-)

Freddiesbuns 03-09-2009 09:09 AM

I'm pretty sure 40 watts is too much for your tank size, I use a 15 watts in my 5 gallons and a 30 watts fluorescent in my 33 gallons! Might be the root of you problem!

Kaddock 03-09-2009 10:38 PM

well, yeah your probably right about that, but all of the 20 watt bulbs i've tried are depressingly dim... i have one of those hoods that i believe is supposed to hold one of those 6 (?) inch 20 (?) watt bulbs... but they all seem too dim to promote plant growth... maybe i will go get one of these spiral energy saver bulbs that is a lower wattage, that might work...

does anyone have more info on the phosphate / algae issue? the local store that i buy all of my fish, etc from has phosguard, but said they have never heard of algae thriving on phosphate rich water before... i know they aren't experts (although they do maintain an amazing store and tons of planted tanks...), i just want more info so i can decide how important this is in my situation!


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