algae - 2 questions
the first is that i have brown algae in my tank and was wondering if there was any way to get rid of it other than just cleaning/rinsing substrate, etc? i took everything out of the tank and cleaned it because it was getting pretty bad. my water params are normal, was i just feeding too much?
second question is that my mothers tank is green...green water that is...and i refered to the algae sticky that blue posted
Does she use tap water?
This link might help you. Eric made an excellent article regarding the use of barley.:)
The easiest way to clear something like this is to first identify the cause. If the cause isn't found and treated, then this will be a continual problem. Algae blooms like this typically signal a problem somewhere. How big of a tank? What and how many fish? That's the place to start... look at feeding habits, water exchanges, how much and how often, replacing carbon in the filter if more than 30 days old, lack of gravel vacs (even if the water changes are done, if gravel isn't cleaned about once/month, nitrate levels will still build)
The most important thing to remember about algae blooms is that they need only 2 things to thrive... light and nutrient levels.
The first thing I would be doing is water testing, especially phosphate and nitrate levels, but also ammonia, nitrite, and pH. Phosphates tend to grow hair algaes, so I'm guessing it's probably not the cause. R/O water should have no phosphate content, although an old unit not well maintained will eventually leak phosphates and a few other things into the water.
Barley works well, but only in collecting the algae, it won't kill it. If the problem is not found, you'll spend a small fortune and find you have to always use the barley, which at some point, may not even be enough to fix the problem.
I would suggest getting her water tested, bring the results back here, and we can help you to sort it out.
Good Luck with it!
hi dawn, what would you suggest about the brown algae? is it as simple as upgrading to a better flourescent bulb? my tank looks pristine except for the brown algae growing everywhere. i got 2 snails to help but i dont see a difference. thanks!
With the brown algae, again, it is a matter if identifying the cause. If overfeeding was the issue, that should also show up in water parameters. Algae, whatever the species of it, needs only the 2 things to thrive... light and nutrient level. If there is no nutrient level to feed it, then the next logical place to start looking is type of light bulb(s) being used, and also the age of the bulb(s) being used. If a bulb is more than 8 months old, I suggest replacing it. Are there live plants in the tank that need anything specific for light?
I'm pretty good at problem solving for stuff like this, but it's difficult with me not knowing enough info about your tank. The more info you can give me, the easier and quicker I can help you. When you say water params are normal... what are the actual numbers coming out for ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, and pH? I've talked to others who rely on the LFS to tell them about their water quality, and the LFS says "normal"... yet I can run the tests on that same water sample 10 minutes later, and it's all out of whack. It is sometimes a matter of who is testing, what kits they're using, and if they're doing the tests correctly.
At this point I don't know enough to further troubleshoot your situation. Feel free to post more information for me to work with, I will try my best to help you resolve this issue. If it gets too complicated for you, drop me an IM and we can find a messenger program to chat on until we sort it out... sometimes it's easier to ask questions and get immediate answers.
Good Luck with it!
all of my info is in the track my tank section, i journal all of the stuff i do with my tank...my ph is about 7.4, my ammonia is 0 my nitrites 0 my nitrates are about 20 and i do weekly water changes of about 10-20 percent using spring water. the bulb is flourescent and came with my tank setup, which i purchased august 19 of this year. are you suggesting that i should try leaving the light OFF? cuz i read somewhere else on this forum that the way to treat brown algae is to upgrade to a brighter bulb (or increase lighting)...is this wrong? thanks for all your help!
I had an brown algea bloom in my 450 just a few weeks ago because my roomate was turning on my lights at 7 in the morning and they would stay on till i got hom at about 8pm. My lights are well strong enough to grow corals with so having a stronger light wont fix it. id say limit the time your lights are on and depending on the size of the tank there are many natural ways to remove the algea.
Id say black out your moms tank for a few days and all the green should disapear.
Also depending on your bio load and filter size you might want to think about doing a bigger water change a week.
I will go look in a little while, see what is listed for your tank stats. More light will only make algae worse, so no... I wouldn't do longer or stronger lighting. Less light can help... how often do you leave the light on? More than 8 - 10 hrs/day is excessive in freshwater, 10 - 12/day for saltwater is average.
I will wait for more advice until I've seen your tank info.
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