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HollyinWA 02-06-2010 01:02 PM

Question on brown algae
 
I am experiencing my first little sign of brown algae in my daughter's 14 gallon tank. Nothing terribly unusual. My quesiton is, since I now have live plants what do you do if they get some of this brown algae on them? I have had some live plants in this tank since it was set up. When I had fake plants, and if the algae eaters (which I do not have now) did not take care of it, I could always wash them off. I am noticing a little bit of the algae on the swords and it is bugging me. Not sure if it would be good on the plants if I rub it off a little. Thanks for any advise on this. I am up on my water changes so know that this is not the problem. I do leave the lights on pretty long - from about 7:00 a.m. until I go to bed. I have read on here that it is very common for new fish tanks to experience brown algae after some time.

stephanieleah 02-06-2010 01:15 PM

It is okay to rub it off and if there is new growth that hasn't been affected covered by brown algae, then old (brown) foliage can be removed. It will go away, don't worry. I still have some residual brown algae on some of my leaves (only certain plants, oddly) and every now and then I just pluck off a leaf or two and leave the rest till next time. I think it kind of solves itself over time. Sorry this isn't very scientific, just my experience with that annoying stuff.

Actually come to think of it when it got really bad, I gave the plants a "bath" in a very, very light bleach solution, rinsed them in three different buckets of treated tap water, and put them back in the tank. Many would argue that 1. dangerous for the plant, and 2. dangerous to put back in the tank. However, I made sure I rinsed all the bleach off and also those plants that I did that to are THRIVING, no new growth has been affected by brown algae.

HollyinWA 02-06-2010 01:20 PM

Thanks, Stephanie, and glad you are feeling better. :)

I figured that it is probably ok to rub a little....which I did...could not resist. Also, I too have trimmed a bit. Thank you for reinforcing my thoughts. I sure hope that the brown algae problem does not get replaced with the green algae problem. I too noticed that some plants are more inclined to grow algae. that is another thing I am liking about the Anubias....don't seem to get the algae. At least not yet. :)



Quote:

Originally Posted by stephanieleah (Post 320400)
It is okay to rub it off and if there is new growth that hasn't been affected covered by brown algae, then old (brown) foliage can be removed. It will go away, don't worry. I still have some residual brown algae on some of my leaves (only certain plants, oddly) and every now and then I just pluck off a leaf or two and leave the rest till next time. I think it kind of solves itself over time. Sorry this isn't very scientific, just my experience with that annoying stuff.

Actually come to think of it when it got really bad, I gave the plants a "bath" in a very, very light bleach solution, rinsed them in three different buckets of treated tap water, and put them back in the tank. Many would argue that 1. dangerous for the plant, and 2. dangerous to put back in the tank. However, I made sure I rinsed all the bleach off and also those plants that I did that to are THRIVING, no new growth has been affected by brown algae.


stephanieleah 02-06-2010 01:48 PM

Luckily before your tank becomes green like a swamp, you're attentive enough with your tank that you will notice the problem before it becomes out of control. My problem with anubias is that debris lands on them so the leaves are covered in stuff all the time. Beautiful though.

Angel079 02-06-2010 04:04 PM

Very common in newer set ups that aren't balanced yet.
Rub it off, or leave it or if its on decor take out & scrub it with a hard bristle brush.

Also what's your stock & gallon there on the daughters tank??

I honestly can not remember if you had or had not followed my Algae - Nightmare - new set up last year with the 55g; where it developed EVERY algae in the book and HARDCORE like half footer patches over night etc....while I don't need to experience that again; it at least made me research a LOT on all algae types and with that, the encouragement here to not give up I battled it sucessfully (And I will actually write a sticky not about this whole Algae matter for every one here with pictures and what to do etc).
So don't get frustrated and if you need me and I"m not seeing your post, just kick me in the rear and send me a PM and I"ll glady help ya out.

HollyinWA 02-06-2010 06:04 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Angel079 (Post 320499)
Very common in newer set ups that aren't balanced yet.
Rub it off, or leave it or if its on decor take out & scrub it with a hard bristle brush.

Also what's your stock & gallon there on the daughters tank??

I honestly can not remember if you had or had not followed my Algae - Nightmare - new set up last year with the 55g; where it developed EVERY algae in the book and HARDCORE like half footer patches over night etc....while I don't need to experience that again; it at least made me research a LOT on all algae types and with that, the encouragement here to not give up I battled it sucessfully (And I will actually write a sticky not about this whole Algae matter for every one here with pictures and what to do etc).
So don't get frustrated and if you need me and I"m not seeing your post, just kick me in the rear and send me a PM and I"ll glady help ya out.


Thanks for the response. :) I am not concerned with the amount of algae that is showing...very normal and just a wee bit, but it is the live plant thing that I need to get used to. I can't take them out and scrub them once the build up gets not so pretty like I could with fake plants. I was kind of curious if live plants attract algae as much as fake ones. I am hoping that by having live plants it can help with the algae. It is a very small amount right now, but since I do not have any algae eaters, I know in time it can build up a little. I am hoping that by being diligent in doing timely water changes even better than when I was last into fish, that will help.

I have 3 guppies and 2 very small Angels (one dime size and one a quarter size) in my daughter's 14 gallon tank. I am waiting for the Angels to get a little bigger before they go in with the older juveniles in my 56 gallon. I ended up finding larger juveniles and fell in love with them. It is hard to find that size around here so I ended up getting two babies for my other future two Angels in the 56 gallon. I did not want completely grown ones that were traded in necessarily....not knowing the age. They always get in the babies. I know it is not the load. Some algae will happen somewhat no matter what but it is the really bad outbreaks of certain kinds that we try to avoid which I have never experienced. But, never say never. :roll:

I have followed your algae situation somewhat but my situation is just the standard algae and not the bad breakout or difficult kind...the hair, etc. I will keep following it, so if I ever do get the same problem I will know what to do or what to change.

I forget, what causes brown algae vs. green?

Thanks again!

Angel079 02-06-2010 06:16 PM

No. In normal set ups where the balance is proper between light, nutrition and CO2 you won't have that probelm (in fake planted tanks you do cause nothing absorbs the light, nutrition and CO2 like live plants so algae will take over).
So called Algae eaters for one don't touch most algae types and 2) as I said if you have everything in balance they're not needed so why add tot he tanks bio load for no reason? 9 outta 10 of my tanks don't have no "algae eaters" and its no problem and never has been.

I was asking for the stock to see if its enough CO2 there. I know we had msg'ed before about new lights for your 14g so forgive I don't remember...how much light do you have over it?
While you're right to say algae is present in all tanks - Some set up's (not being balanced) don't stop at the "normal" algae presence but carry own to a break out; to catch that EARLY on I'm asking plenty questions :-)

Actually there's 2 diff kinds: Brown Algae which sorta looks like someone sprinkled cinnamon all over your rock & plants. Then there's Black Brush algae; I'm suspecting you have the brush?
BB develops full force if/ when there balance between CO2 (your fish) and light is out of balance (too high end lights for little fish) and / or dev when you had a heavy stocked tank; then take a bunch fish out leaving a handful and later on down the Rd adding a bunch of fish( so when you CO2 is fluctuating)
The brown algae like cinnamon; aka Diatoms; I really only heard of and seen that in newly set up tanks due to silicates and ammonia.

HollyinWA 02-06-2010 07:12 PM

Thanks for the great answer. That really helps. I was hoping that by having live plants this time around and of course with the right balance my tanks will not have that typical algae or at least be as inclined to get it. I never had it terrible but don't like it none the least. What you explained in your first paragraph makes total sense! I am going to have to keep studying the proper balance with live plants. Boy, do I still have lots to learn. I hope I can get it right.

Since our 14 gallon tank has the twist in type fixture and i could not find what you have easily in our stores, I ended up getting the Colormax from Dr. Foster's that Byron and you both said would be good. I believe each bulb is 10 watts. I don't know what else to do. The plants that have been in there before I got my new batch look really healthy. I am eager to see how my new plants do after several days. What else can I do for this tank to make sure the balance is right? I will research some of the posts on here.....your thread discussions.

I believe the algae is the brush kind and it is mostly on the tip parts of the plants but not all of them and looks like maybe in areas that get the most direct light. I do not see any algae yet on the glass. One good thing in terms of not getting too much light in this tank is the 14 gallon is taller than the 10 gallon. I do leave the lights on from 7 a.m. to right before I go to bed which can be around 10:00.

Thanks again. You have been very helpful and kind to take the time to respond how you do. :-)


Quote:

Originally Posted by Angel079 (Post 320589)
No. In normal set ups where the balance is proper between light, nutrition and CO2 you won't have that probelm (in fake planted tanks you do cause nothing absorbs the light, nutrition and CO2 like live plants so algae will take over).
So called Algae eaters for one don't touch most algae types and 2) as I said if you have everything in balance they're not needed so why add tot he tanks bio load for no reason? 9 outta 10 of my tanks don't have no "algae eaters" and its no problem and never has been.

I was asking for the stock to see if its enough CO2 there. I know we had msg'ed before about new lights for your 14g so forgive I don't remember...how much light do you have over it?
While you're right to say algae is present in all tanks - Some set up's (not being balanced) don't stop at the "normal" algae presence but carry own to a break out; to catch that EARLY on I'm asking plenty questions :-)

Actually there's 2 diff kinds: Brown Algae which sorta looks like someone sprinkled cinnamon all over your rock & plants. Then there's Black Brush algae; I'm suspecting you have the brush?
BB develops full force if/ when there balance between CO2 (your fish) and light is out of balance (too high end lights for little fish) and / or dev when you had a heavy stocked tank; then take a bunch fish out leaving a handful and later on down the Rd adding a bunch of fish( so when you CO2 is fluctuating)
The brown algae like cinnamon; aka Diatoms; I really only heard of and seen that in newly set up tanks due to silicates and ammonia.


Angel079 02-06-2010 07:41 PM

Its really not as complicated as it sounds; or is made to sound in some articles; its rel easy....
Oh yea right now I remember!
2 Coralmax should be just fine over a 14g...I find 15hrs/day too much; hook it to a timer and set it to 10hrs max.;-)

Thou this thread's intention was initially something else...it has good Intel on that very matter http://www.tropicalfishkeeping.com/f...ck-outs-36636/

Really I'd not be worried; if its lil as you say; cause there's been quit some changes to that tank lately and the new plant intro and all; I'd keep up the maintenance don't have the lights on more then 10hrs/day, pinch a few leaf's off if you feel you have to and just monitor it. Like I said its very common in new set ups and once the tank starts establishing it'll automatically subside.
Like both my 45&latest 10 both had hair algae develop; if I felt like it I cleaned some out during the pwc and if not then I didn't. By now its save to say easily 99% is gone/ died off. I seen a lil tiny string at the very back left today cleaning but that was it.

Just googel image results for "black brush algae" see if that's what you have. I looked throught my files I don't have a BB picture sorry :|

eileen 02-06-2010 07:59 PM

Brown Agae, or( Diatoms)

It is rare to be seen in a long established aquarium. Newly set up aquariums with poor circulation, poor lighting, and an excess of silica in the water are the most likely candidates for this form of algae.

Known treatments

Time- allow it to run its course. Once the silica is depleted the algae will eventually disappear

Increase light level

If your water is high in silica, use or cut your water with RO water

Manual removal-siphon/scrape diatoms manually for quick removal

Algae eaters- Otocinclus and Nerite snails


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