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Old 03-19-2020, 04:24 PM   #1
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Brown algae on plants

Hi there, I have a 15gal Fluval Flex with Fluval stratum substrate. I have many nice plants, but they are slowly getting covered in brown algae that wonít rub off manually. I have 3 tetra cardinals, 2 glofish, 3 julii corydoras, 4 ghost shrimp and 3 nerite snails. All fish are young and small. I change my water (30%) weekly. And feed twice per day and a 1/4 algae wafer every 2-3 days for the corys and the shrimp.
I leave the light in for 12 hours per day.

Does anyone have any advice for me to get rid of the brown algae?

Thanks
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Old 03-19-2020, 06:25 PM   #2
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Reduce the lights from 12 hours to about 7-8 hours.
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Old 03-19-2020, 10:02 PM   #3
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Thanks Sara, I think that I will reduce my feedings to once per day as well. I assumed that the plants needed lots of light, plus I like looking at a well lit tank, this is why I had the lights on for so long.

Now that I think about it, I may even have the lights on for 13-14 hours per day..

Thanks for the info.
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Old 03-20-2020, 12:46 AM   #4
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What does the algae look like? Soft brown algae that rubs off is usually some form of diatom which is common in new tanks and usually goes away over time. If it is tough, hairy stuff that does not come off it is most likely Black Beard Algae or BBA for short.
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Old 03-20-2020, 01:14 AM   #5
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Thanks Dallas, it is kind of a mix between soft and tough. When I scrape it off with my finger and thumb, a bit of comes off (it's a bit slimy), but a hard tough residue remains on the plant that will not come off no matter how hard I rub or scrape it. There are no hairlike strands, mostly just tiny brown dots that become more and more until the leaf is covered in brown.
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Old 03-20-2020, 02:12 AM   #6
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Does the algae look like this? If so it is Black Beard Algae.
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Old 03-20-2020, 10:43 AM   #7
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Thanks, that not what I have growing my tank. It must be the diotoms that I have. Any idea how to control it?
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Old 03-21-2020, 12:17 AM   #8
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Does it look like this?
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Old 03-21-2020, 12:36 AM   #9
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YES! It does!
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Old 03-21-2020, 01:10 AM   #10
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Thanks, that not what I have growing my tank. It must be the diotoms that I have. Any idea how to control it?
Diatoms should largely go away on their own. I have never had a tank have an extended problem with diatoms since they feed on silicates which typically are abundant in new tanks. Especially new tanks with new sand substrate. After a while they consume their entire food source and burn out. As suggested before, Lower the number of hours your lights are on and outside of that I wouldn't worry about it.
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Old 03-21-2020, 01:15 AM   #11
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Thanks very much everyone!
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Old 03-21-2020, 11:04 PM   #12
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Thanks, helps my issue too! I’ll go to 7 hours lighting from 10.
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Old 03-24-2020, 07:34 AM   #13
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Hi all, I’ve had a 70litre tank about 4 weeks now I’ve got 6 blue neon’s & 6 rummy nose tetra’s, I started getting a lot of brown algae about a week ago, I replaced 20% of water & the plastic plants went & replaced with real plants but the problem seems to be getting worse. There was some sunlight getting into the tank but it’s been moved. Any advice
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Old 03-24-2020, 10:56 AM   #14
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I understand that the brown algae is actually diotoms. It thrives in new tanks as it consumes the silica in the tank. I understand that it will clear up eventually when the silica is all consumed. Some thing that helped me was adding snails!!! They cleaned it up so quickly! Reducing my feeding (I was feeding too much) and reducing the light to 7-8 hours per day. Natural plants also help. Also by doing 50%water changes more frequently 2 times per week, will control the nitrates and reduce the likelihood of other algaes. My tank is so clean now (not a spot) I have to add algae wafers to feed my corydoras and snails! I’m still a novice, but this it’s what I learned and this is what worked for me.
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Old 03-24-2020, 12:38 PM   #15
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Hi sunslave
Thanks for advice, I’ve googled it & you tubed it they seem to give 2 answers, but yours is really helpful, il definitely act on your suggestions thank you.
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