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Discussion Starter #1
Will someone help me with an outbreak of cyano I'm experiencing? I'm not sure what I can do other than manually remove it. I'd also like to know what caused it?? :-(

Tank specs:

ph 7.8
ammonia 0
nitrIte 0
nitrAte 10
(San Diego's famous "hard as concrete" tap water)

Lighting: 130 watts CFL 6500K over a 100gl, 12 hours on/ 12 hours off (bulbs are replaced every six months) Seachem's Flourish Comprehensive weekly, Seachem's root tabs every two months (under the heavy root feeders)

This tank has been set up for 2+ years and this is the first time I've had this type of problem.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Is that the link you were looking for on the forum?
No, it wasn't. That was something else I was looking for. It seems I'm looking for alot of things this morning, lol.
So, about this cyano. Have you ever experienced it? I bet you are lucky enough that you've never had to deal with this nasty stuff, am I right?? It's absolutely gross. Of course, this just had to happen in my Discus display tank, and not one of my other tanks that I could easily break down and start over... :-(
 

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no, i've been lucky so far. i just sent you the thread on cyanobacteria from this forum via. pm.

try googling the keywords of the thread you're looking for. 9 out of 10 times it will bring you back here. as martha would say "it's a good thing"
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for the article link! After reading it I'm more confused than before. It talks about the causes for this bacteria as being related to dirty water, high nitrate and/or phosphate levels, lack of O2 and/or water movement, poor filtration, etc. This is my Discus tank and the water conditions are stellar.
It also states that cyano has a funky "smell" and this tank of mine smells "fresh". I'm stumped.
Byron, are you awake yet?? Help, help, help. (LOL)
 

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That "fresh" smell is actually stink for many people, i dont think it smells so bad but my friends say it reeks... Its often caused by detritus in ur substrate in my experience, if i keep up with my gravel vacs it goes away. I once had it really bad and i dosed with maracyn for a week and it killed all the cyano. Seeing as how this your discus tank, meds might not be a good idea. Just suck as much of it out as you can find, it comes up like a carpet, and do a thorough gravel vac.
 

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I recently had an outbreak in my dwarf puffer tank (also with great parameters) and had to tear it down. You won't smell it until you try to scrape it off... then it smells just horrid. I completely scrubbed/scraped everything and made sure that there wasn't any left, then set it up as a quarantine tank instead and thought I was good to go. Now the stuff is back. I can't imagine trying to get it out of a 100 gallon!

I'm going to stalk your thread in hopes of help too, if you don't mind! :lol:
 

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Cyanobacteria is caused by organics in the presence of light.

I never get it in my Amazon tanks, but it regularly appears in my Asian tanks. Some time back I read that it seems to be more frequent in tanks with crypts; I have crypts in the tanks where I see this. I have been meaning to ask this of my colleagues in the Aquatic Gardners Association when I remember.

I also find it comes and goes in stages. A year ago I had it bad in the 70g. Every week I would manually remove as much as I could during the water change, and every week it would reappear within a couple days; it covered the surface on the floating plants. This went on for weeks. Then, suddenly, it disappeared--a weekor two after I started dosing Flourish Comprehensive twice (instead of once) a week, and I reduced the light by one hour. Don't know if either had something to do with it disappearing, but it did. This tank has the brightest light, two 40w T8 tubes, and this plus the Flourish only once a week may have been out of balance.

More recently, it appeared in the (new) 70g. Not as bad, but it was there. Then, after maybe 4-5 weeks, no more. There are crypts in this tank. And I again went to twice weekly with Flourish. It is probably a blance issue in part.

I posted a link to an article on cyanobacteria a few weeks back for someone, maybe that was the link Romad sent.

Byron.
 

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Will someone help me with an outbreak of cyano I'm experiencing? I'm not sure what I can do other than manually remove it. I'd also like to know what caused it?? :-(

Tank specs:

ph 7.8
ammonia 0
nitrIte 0
nitrAte 10
(San Diego's famous "hard as concrete" tap water)

Lighting: 130 watts CFL 6500K over a 100gl, 12 hours on/ 12 hours off (bulbs are replaced every six months) Seachem's Flourish Comprehensive weekly, Seachem's root tabs every two months (under the heavy root feeders)

This tank has been set up for 2+ years and this is the first time I've had this type of problem.
Kymmie,
Were this my tank, I would consider a good pruning of existing plant's to encourage new growth. I say this due to the belief that as plant's grow to maturity the growth may slow, and heavy plant mass could also inhibit new growth by blocking light and discouraging new growth at the substrate as well as further up the plant.
Where plant's are thriving,growing, they can utilize the available nutrient's,light ,(if unobstructed) and available CO2 and Algae which I believe Cyno is a form of,,struggles.Therefore it makes sense to me that continued growth of plant's will help inhibit the growth of various froms of algae.
As plant mass get's larger, and little or no more growth is seen or slows,,flow or circulation around the plant's ,as well as the base of plant's ,could become obstructed. Then, it is possible that oxygen levels at the substrtate could be lower due to organics,detritus ,that settle around the base of large plant mass where it is difficult to remove.
Where plant's are thriving ,most forms of algae stuggle as I understand it.
On the flip side,, If lighting is there,along with nutrients,and even low levels of CO2 such as that produced by organic break down, and by fish,, but plant mass is small or few,,then various forms of algae will find condition's to their liking.(might reduce photo period )
Hence,were it me... I would perform a significant pruning of existing plant's to encourage new growth,or in the event pant's were few,,add more and after large pruning,, planting,, perform large water change.
Have heard of antibiotic Erythromycin used to erradicate the Cyno but as I understand it also compromises the biological filter. I might be willing to try this as last resort .

(Disclaimer).. All of the above is merely my opinion and I am no authority on plants. (not by a long shot), Just offering things that I might consider with my tanks,my plant's.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Kymmie,
Were this my tank, I would consider a good pruning of existing plant's to encourage new growth.

Have heard of antibiotic Erythromycin used to erradicate the Cyno but as I understand it also compromises the biological filter. I might be willing to try this as last resort .
1077- I did a HUGE pruning, enough so that what was once a heavily planted tank, now looks sparse. Anything that looked like cyano on the plants was removed. I don't have it in my substrate (yet) and scrubbed as much of it off the wood as I could. My anacharis also had cyano growing on it, so I pitched all of it but a few prime looking strands. I scrubbed off large portions that were on my driftwood with my fingernail and them sniffed it but I do not notice a bad smell. I've attached a pic, I'm sure that it is cyano but it doesn't "stink" at all to me. I'm highly sensitive to smells and from everything I've read it states that cyano is suppose to reek.

I will not use Erythro. This is my Discus tank and there is no how, no way, I will mess with the biological filter in this tank. I'm encouraged by Byron's report that it will come and go in stages. By removing all that I can, adding some new plants (to replace all that I've culled), and doing some large water changes in a row, I think I can do alot towards eliminating it.

Byron, incidentally I do have tons of crypts in this tank! After pruning they are down to just a few leaves. I will begin dosing with Flourish Comprehensive twice a week, instead of just weekly, and have already cut back my lighting schedule by two hours. Hopefully this will help to eradicate it. I've also added a new micron filter to help trap the loose cells of cyano that are floating, due to all my scrubbing of it.

Here's the pic, cyano for sure, right?? (The little white "things" in the pic are parts of the scrubber pad that were left behind)
 

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That looks like cyanobacteria to me, just like what I have on some wood in the 70g. I must track down that info on the relationship to crypts, it is too co-incidental.

On the Erythromycin, I did not mention this previously because it is indeed a last resort, and while it will (may) deal with the present cyanobacteria, if whatever causes it is not removed it will be back.

About a year ago there was a thread from another member who used Maracyn I believe, another similar antibiotic. I warned that this could kill some plants, and a week later he reported that it in fact did do just that. I used Maracyn once for an infection or something, and I noticed that within a couple of weeks the pygmy chain swords had melted, and the large red leaf swords too; the large green swords did not, though they did appear to have been set back a bit. Everything recovered eventually after several major water changes. But using antibiotics clearly risks damage to the plants. Sensitive fish would presumably be affected as well, along with bacteria obviously.

Byron.
 

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I used maracyn for it once, my plants did fine, i dosed for a little over a week, ~8-9 days. you can see the cyano die, it falls apart and gets washed away in little ribbons. I did a 20%water change on day 4 and 10% changes day 9-12 (after i stopped dosing) as well as reinserting carbon on day 9.

I did not start getting it till i planted some crypts into my tank, did not know that there was a correlation...
 

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That reminds me of another side issue. Whenever some form of treatment is used that results in rapid death of algae or in this case a bacteria, it will cause a sudden increase in ammonia and possibly nitrates. The "blackout" approach for instance is highly dangerous on this front; the massive death of algae can poison a tank of fish overnight. Quick removal of the dead algae/bacteria is necessary.
 

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+1 on the blackout.

I did a 72 hour blackout on my 29 gallon planted that had a huge infestation. I did a post on here a while back about it. It was a success.

Of course the blackout by itself it not the only solution. After i did the blackout i dialed down the lights two hours a day, started dosing with ferts, and no problems since. Of course i had to add CO2 because of my high lights( most on here dont' use CO2).

It's an easy process. I did a 50 percent water change while vacuuming up as much of the nasty stuff as possible. Then blacked it out for 72 hours. I used black garbage bags...lol..it was "trashy" to say the least but effective. Then when i had finished the blackout i vacuumed up the grey dust bunnies that were left behind while doing a 50% water change. The post might still be available. i had lots of pics.....

whatever you do..good luck
 

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Discussion Starter #18
I'm so disgusted! Enough so that I chucked nearly all of my plants tonight. I have another order coming in tomorrow. $200.00 via overnight. What the heck, it's only money right? :-(
I cleaned the tank something fierce, did nearly a 90% water change and added a new diatom filter. (Can you tell I'm resisting the black out?) After all that my two pair of Discus went right back to guarding their eggs. The rest of the Discus are behaving like nothing at all happened. Only the loaches acted a tad frantic but went right back to normal after their driftwood was back in place. Yep, I pulled all pieces and scrubbed those. Nothing like a mad woman on a mission. I'm nuts sometimes.
 

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I'm so disgusted! Enough so that I chucked nearly all of my plants tonight. I have another order coming in tomorrow. $200.00 via overnight. What the heck, it's only money right? :-(
I cleaned the tank something fierce, did nearly a 90% water change and added a new diatom filter. (Can you tell I'm resisting the black out?) After all that my two pair of Discus went right back to guarding their eggs. The rest of the Discus are behaving like nothing at all happened. Only the loaches acted a tad frantic but went right back to normal after their driftwood was back in place. Yep, I pulled all pieces and scrubbed those. Nothing like a mad woman on a mission. I'm nuts sometimes.


:rofl:
 

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I'm glad I could make you laugh. :)

Here's another laugh, just for you. In addition to pulling out all the plants I had also purchased another piece of Malaysian driftwood. It's a nice piece and I bought it as I'm toying with the idea of going hardscape and just forgetting about the plants in this tank altogether. After boiling the wood and getting it pristine I was ready to add it to the tank. As I was putting it in the tank it got "stuck" in the opening of the tank. The tank is acrylic and the openings on top are only so wide and so long. The piece is too large to fit in the tank! Duh, forgot about those openings when I bought this particular piece.

While I know I can cut it down to fit it will ruin the "look" and design of this piece, which is the sole reason I bought it. Grrrrr. When I upgrade to a larger tank it will NOT have "openings" on top. Darn it all!!
 
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