Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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Gambit 04-01-2010 03:00 AM

Brown Alage outbreak!!! help!
So i have a 5gal hex with live plants in it and 26wats of lighting and i have been going for a almost month and half now but within the last 3 days i have had a insain outbreak of what looks to be brown hair like algae growing everywhere.... its gottn on my plants my sides of the tank log and gravel. idk if i should cut back the lighting or increase the co2 input or what. I had 2 otts in there but one day while doing a water change they died the next day so idk iv never had any luck with them anyhow so its time to find something else. is there some sort of shrimp i can use? all we have around in out lfs is ghost shrimp would these eat all this?

fish in tank are
1 striped ralph (baby) dont lecture me about it beign a 6" fish in a 5gal when he grows up ill move him.
3 glow fish
and a beta

some sort of fern
java moss
amazon sowrd
and some other one witch im not too sure what it is its just 3 tiny stems ill probly post a pic so i can figure out what it is.

karjean 04-01-2010 05:12 AM

The diatom process is normal, just scrape it off as you do water changes and it will start to disappear slowly. Do not panic about it, most of us has gone thru this.

Gambit 04-01-2010 01:09 PM

is there anything that can help aid me through this process of gettn rid of it? besides otts?

moot88 04-01-2010 01:24 PM

You might want to try a "blackout". I dont know if it works with your form of algae, probably check with some of the other members and do you research on the process. I have seen the idea thrown around the forum in a few different places. Otherwise when i had this i would just do about a twenty percent water change every three days after scraping off the algae and it seemed to get rid of it pretty well, or maybe get some snails, i know most pet stores will give you small ones free. But they could also be harmful to your plants. I would stick with water changes, and if things dont get better after a few weeks you might have to turn to more drastic measures:twisted: also it seems like you might have a little too much light for a 5hex. i'm no epert though, talk to Byron about that.

Gambit 04-01-2010 02:22 PM

26 would give me 5.2wpg so i meen idk i think thats pretty good... i probably wouldnt have put so much in it but i plan on converting to a nano eventually so i figured why not go all out. but i have done somne reading about these amano shrimp. and everyone say they eat this type of algae. but none the lfs carry them. If any of you have any can we possably work something out?

Byron 04-01-2010 03:00 PM

Diatom, commonly called brown algae, is absolutely normal in new tanks. Within the first 3-4 months almost all new tanks have it. I just deal with it; use your fingers to remove it from plant leaves (to prevent the plants dying from inability to photosynthesize and assimilate nutrients, etc. through the leaves). Scrape it off the tank glass, or leave it on the side/back glass, up to you. It will be gone eventually. Lighting has little impact on it, in fact, low lighting can cause it in established tanks, but in this case it is there because this is a new setup, nothing more.

Otos and most "algae" eating fish will eat diatoms, but I do not recommend buying specific fish just for this. When the diatom is gone, you are left with a fish you may not otherwise want, and in a small 5g tank that is causing another critical issue in the bioload. This is not the answer. Shrimp eat some types of algae; so do snails but that is minimal.

You have a lot of light for this tank, and you will have green algae problems like you never dreamed of if things are not balanced. I can offer suggestions on balance, but I need to know exactly what you are running--type of light (CF bulbs or fluorescent tube, and what sort of light), CO2, nutrients (fertilizers), what plants, what fish. The latter two are covered in your first post, the plants and fish. You mentioned CO2, do you have a CO2 diffusion system? With those plants you do not need CO2 and I do not recommend it, it is not going to be easy to balance it in a 5g tank. Let us know about ferts and the light, I'll have more then.

A comment on the raphael catfish; yes you realize he needs more room. But the problem is that potentially-large fish that grow (sort of) in small quarters often (usually) develop internal organ problems called stunting. A fish grows all its life, unlike us. It needs adequate space around it from day one, and this involves not just the size of area but the water conditions which are even more critical for growth. Where I'm going with this, is that this catfish needs to move into larger quarters sooner rather than later.


Gambit 04-01-2010 07:12 PM

i am running the co2 directly into the filter intake. 2cups sugar and /14 teaspoon yeast. the lighting is 2 13watt 7k cf bulbs. and im not running any ferts. all my nitrate levels and everything are in the norm too. Cept for the hard water. City water here is hard but i usuly do half city water and half water from the store from the machine so its not hard.

Yea the raphael fish is going to go into a 29gal once i get up in the atic and find it. but liek i said its a baby oober tiny.

Byron 04-01-2010 07:55 PM

With this info, my first suggestion would be to stop the CO2. The 7000K bulbs are good, but only one of them. I do not believe plants will grow without fertilizer in a tank with this much light and added CO2. And when light exceeds what the plants can use in balance with the nutrients, algae (green) will occur. Where are the 13 mineral nutrients going to come from, if not a fertilizer? That's about all I can offer. Byron.

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