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Old 04-28-2006, 02:52 PM   #1
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Light Brown/Bronze Algae?

There is this algae type stuff starting to cover up my mayan decor on the left side it is light brown to bronze colored. I think this may be brown algae or bacteria bloom or something i have read about before on here that exisits in new tanks (diatoms or something) .... but im not sure .... anyone know what this is and how to fix it? .... i cant get pics right now cause my camera is back at school but i will as soon as i can.
TIA

Ray
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Old 04-28-2006, 03:17 PM   #2
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Brown algae is either diatoms or cyanobacteria. Diatoms are from silicate. Cyanobacteria is from poor water quality (generally high nitrate). Test water quality (ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, and pH) and pay attention to nitrate levels.

Also pick up some of this brown stuff and rub it between your fingers. If it's gritty and falls apart easily, then it's most likely diatoms. If it's slimy and doesn't seem to break apart easily, then it's cyanobacteria.

Cyanobacteria is controlled through maintaining low nitrates (ideally below 30ppm). Diatoms generally will disappear over time on their own as the silicate content of the water diminishes. Though sightly, diatoms are harmless.

Bushynose plecos, rubberlip plecos, and otocinclus are known to eat both.

HTH
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Old 04-28-2006, 03:32 PM   #3
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Will my clown pleco eat them? and i believe my nitrates are around 15 or 10 because it was about 15 then i did a PWC a few days ago but i need to keep around there since i have plants ... ill test again right now though ... thanks for the info

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Old 04-28-2006, 06:18 PM   #4
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I have the same problem, and I have a clown pleco.

He doesn't touch it. As we speak im in the process of acclimating an otto catfish, so if he lives and does a good job, I'll be grabbing maybe 2 more.

I'll report back to tell ya how good the otto does.
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Old 04-28-2006, 09:36 PM   #5
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aaaah, yes....the brown algae. I'm battling that stuff right now myself. I thought I could handle allowing my tank to get a bit dirty since I knew that it would happen. Well, I kind of a nut about the tank and scrubbing it daily.

They say that some fish food also adds to the diatom problem so don't overfeed.
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Old 04-28-2006, 10:21 PM   #6
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I've never seen clowns listed as a filamentous algae/diatom eater. How many gallons is the tank? Maybe you can house a bushynose or rubberlip. They'll get along with the clown.
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Old 04-29-2006, 03:15 PM   #7
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Update on the Otto:

I can't belive it. I put him in the tank and almost immediatly he went to work on the brown algae. This is a 10-gallon community, and already one of my fake plants is almost completly clear of brown algae!

Hopefully he'll make it through the transistion because I heard a lot die within 2 weeks of adding them to the tank. If he makes it, i'm definatly going back to the same store and getting 2 more from the same tank this one came from.
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Old 04-29-2006, 06:11 PM   #8
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cool maybe in a week or so ill look into getting one ... as im battling ich right now and lost my clown pleco anyways
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Old 04-29-2006, 06:31 PM   #9
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Sounds like diatoms. It should go away within a couple weeks, or sooner. If you rub it off, it will more than likely spread and grow elsewhere. Best thing is leave it be and let it go away on it's own. It will go quicker that way. Also, otos help with it as well. They love to munch on the stuff.
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Old 04-30-2006, 09:15 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shaunakadub
Update on the Otto:

I can't belive it. I put him in the tank and almost immediatly he went to work on the brown algae.
I had a similar experience with my otto. He is relentless about cleaning up any brown algae.
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Old 05-01-2006, 05:34 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrzap
Quote:
Originally Posted by shaunakadub
Update on the Otto:

I can't belive it. I put him in the tank and almost immediatly he went to work on the brown algae.
I had a similar experience with my otto. He is relentless about cleaning up any brown algae.
I'll third the oto experiences. I had massive amounts of brown algae all over my 25-gal. I got 3 oto's and they went to work. By the next day, the entire front pane of glass, plastic heater holder, and glass heater casing were spotless. One of the oto's died the following day, but the remaining 2 oto's have been keeping brown algae from accumulating. I've even been feeding them zucchini to keep them well fed.

To shaunakadub - I'd think that 1 oto would be more than enough for a 10-gal tank, especially since its food source will become less available as the diatoms go away. However, I think oto's don't like to be alone...so maybe a total of 2 oto's for your 10-gal - and you may need to supplement their diet with zucchini/cucumber/etc.
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Old 05-01-2006, 01:55 PM   #12
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[quote="noncentric"]
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrzap
To shaunakadub - I'd think that 1 oto would be more than enough for a 10-gal tank, especially since its food source will become less available as the diatoms go away. However, I think oto's don't like to be alone...so maybe a total of 2 oto's for your 10-gal - and you may need to supplement their diet with zucchini/cucumber/etc.
Already prepared for that =)

I have a few types of algae tabs for the clown pleco, i've seen the otto munch down on those with the pleco. I also put a few veggies in there every so often aswell.

All the reading I did on ottos, I really thought he was going to die within a few days. So far, he looks awesome. Actually better then he looked in the store =p
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Old 05-01-2006, 02:28 PM   #13
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Oh yes... the fantastic Oto... I got 2 Otos and 4 Corys as my first fish in my 29G... Still my faves.. Otos took about 2 days to get rid of a SUPER thick outbreak of Diatoms... Its funny, when they went in there, they just went to town on the brown gunk. Let them at it and checked on them in the morning... they had cleared a TON of the stuff, but had make literally hundreds of itty bitty Oto poops all over the place! They were feasting all night and throughout the next day. After 2 days of that it was time for a good vac'ing to get all the itty bitty Oto poop, but they did a fantastic job. Still seem to be thriving too! The Otos and Corys are still my faves in the tank. Between the 2 sets they make a great cleaning crew. Feed sinking wafers to the Corys and the Otos even eat on those! I've been very surprised at how well mine have done. Highly recommend the Otocinclus.

I always seem to find mine in some really interesting places too. One had balanced himself on the pistil of an Annubias blossom this morning... not holding on with his mouth, but balanced. Went to get camera and he of course had moved when I got back. Funny little creatures.
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