|Byron ||04-19-2012 10:16 AM |
Originally Posted by hywaydave
The brush algae has spread to some of my plants. The lights are on for 8 hours. Should I reduce it more? I thought 8 hours was the minimum. Should I try to rub the algae off the plants or wood, or would that spread it worse? Are there any animals that will eat this stuff?
If we mean the little tufts, that is brush algae. I have it, about the only problem algae I do see. It is caused solely by light being greater (in intensity and/or duration) that the plants can use, meaning the nutrients including CO2 must be sufficient to balance the light for the plants. My solution 3 times was to reduce the light.
If it is too intense, then lowering the light tubes/bulbs will work. If the intensity is now balanced (minimal for the system) then lessening the duration will work. I have even had brush algae increase during the summer when more daylight (stronger and longer) enters the room. You can reduce the tank light down to 6 hours minimum, below that the plants will struggle. If you do the less duration, an hour at first may do the trick.
Now, having said all that...brush algae covers my wood, and I leave it alone. It is only when it gets on plant leaves that I bother, because it can suffocate the leaf and then the plant. However, I often find it only on certain leaves, and without fail they are dying. Whether they begin to die (as older leaves will) and the algae then finds them, or whether the algae causes them to begin dying, I don't know.
As for fish eating this, one or two will, but they carry other problems so they are not usually recommended. This algae will not easily come off plants, usually the leaf is torn trying to remove it, so it is better to remove the leaf (depending upon the extent) and work to re-balance the light. Once things are balanced, what is there will not go away, but not increasing is the goal. This is a very, very common algae.