Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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Joe 08-25-2009 09:15 AM

Bad algae/bacteria growth in betta tank
So I have a problem here. I have a 3 gal eclipse tank with filter here at work as a betta tank. I started to notice some green algae and a little bit of brown stuff starting to grow on the little bridge thing I have in the tank. I took out the bridge and cleaned it off, did a water change, and cleaned the walls of the tank with an algae sponge. I figured thats all the problems I had after over a month of owning it then I was doing pretty well. Well that was just the start. After I cleaned everything the green algae never came back but the brown stuff started to run rampant on the tank. I tried cleaning the walls and bridge again but it came back in full force and covered the bridge and spread to the fake grass. I finally took the betta out of the tank and did a full water change, cleaned the walls, ran water through the rocks, cleaned the bridge and grass and changed out the filter. I refilled the tank with water and put the betta back in. Well that didn't last long and now it is back in full swing again. Does anyone know how to stop this? Do I have to take the betta out and scrub the tank and throughly clean the rocks?(how do I clean rocks anyway) which would be a pain at the office but it can be done or can I add some anti bacterial/algae drops or something from the pet store? It literally starts to come back the next day and I cannot take the time to clean this thing daily.

FishySuzy 08-25-2009 09:48 AM

Algae is just a fact of life. I know it's unsightly, but it's just a fact of life. I feel that it's a good sign. Just scrub it off and don't worry about it. :D

Little-Fizz 08-25-2009 09:49 AM

Well you should never empty the tank completely, I'm not really sure what kind of algae this is but a black out would kill it. Just wrap a garbage bag around the tank turn the lights off and leave it alone for 3 days. What is the wattage of your lights? Do you use any ferts? You can over dose the algae with ferts.

aunt kymmie 08-25-2009 10:01 AM

The brown algae you are seeing (diatoms) is very common in a "new" tank set up. If left alone it usually just dies off on its own. Each and every one of my tanks went through this "brown algae everywhere" stage. Each time you give this tank a thorough cleaning you are essentially setting it up as a "new" tank all over again. If it was my tank (it's not!) I'd do weekly partial water changes & use an acrylic scrubber to wipe down the insides of the tank. Eventually the brown algae should abate.

Byron 08-25-2009 11:46 AM

I totally agree with kymmie's advice. Brown diatoms can also occur with inadequate light (too little), as opposed to green algae that occurs in brighter light (not from the light but from the nutrients, but the light determines the type). Follow kymmie's suggestions, all should be well. Algae is natural as another poster said, not something to be continually removed except from the front glass or if it gets out of hand (which this isn't, in my view).


Joe 08-28-2009 08:04 AM

Alright I'll keep removing it from the glass and letting it be but this brown stuff had completely taken over the bridge at one point (that green bridge you see in the picture was solid brown, literally). The weird thing was this started to occur long after the tank should have been established so I didn't have any problems when it was 'new' for the first 2 months.

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