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Old 10-27-2003, 11:57 PM   #1
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Rust Colored Slime Invasion

Okay Gang,

My 30 gal. tank has finally cycled (about 7 weeks). Anyway, now the inside of the tank is being invaded by a rust colored slime attaching itself to the inside of the glass and fake plants and ornaments. What is it? Is it algae? Is it my friendly bacteria? Can I get rid of it? (It's quite ugly!) All the fish seem healthy. Just got a chinese algae eater, but so far he doesn't seem interested in the slime. Help!!! TIA

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Old 10-28-2003, 12:29 AM   #2
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That is brown algea. It is normal in new tank. it will go away after 2-3 weeks. but if you have pleco or CAE then it will be gone in no time.
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Old 10-28-2003, 08:46 AM   #3
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Who's to say it will really go away, though!? Even with scrubbing, that stuff often re-rears its nasty head. Don't get a CAE if you can possibly help it, but do get a dwarf pleco. They're perfect for this size tank, and 1 should be able to do the job him/herself. Some suggestions, as not all plecos are dwarves!

*Cheap*: Bushy Nose (I have one, see gallery), Candy Stripe L-135, Hairy Tiger L-105.
*Expensive*: Queen Arabesque (Once again, see gallery), King Tiger, Mega Clown Peckoltia :LDA-019, Gold Banded Peckoltia L-134.
*Do not buy*: Standard Plecostomus, Trinidad Pleco.

All these plecos have an L-### code associated with them (though I don't know all of them), indicating that they are a species of the family Loricariidae. Because there are so many species in the family, there aren't enough names to go around, so they've just called them by their number.

Also possibilities are Oto Cats and Flying Foxes. These are also good algae eaters.

HTH
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Old 10-28-2003, 05:16 PM   #4
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Hey Madasa.......

Why do you recommend against chinese algae eaters?
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Old 10-28-2003, 05:23 PM   #5
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My pleco won't go near the brown algae in my tank. I tried not feeding him he everyother day algae tab for 4-5 days, but the stuff is still there. My tank has been going since June. Should I use some kind of algae killer treatment?
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Old 10-28-2003, 05:44 PM   #6
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Probably not, julie...if it kills algae...it might kill your fish too!

Whats your lighting like? Have you read the article on algae (in the saltwater articles section of the site....still useful for FW tanks)?

There are lots of kinds of critters that we call "algae"...some are bacteria, some are plants, and some are diatomic. A lot of freshly cycled tanks get some brown algae, which is usually diatomic, and goes away with increased light.

Most photosynthetic critters, though, get worse with increased light....in which the cure is, yup, no light. In severe cases, some people will "blackout" their tanks for up to a week to kill off algae. Sometimes with stubborn cases of cyanobacteria, antibiotics are used (extreme cases! using these will kill off your biological filter, and you'll have to re-cycle your tank!).

Best way to handle algae, if it isn't too pervasive, is just to clean it off (they sell scrapers at the lfs). If it's getting to be nuisance, then you have to figure out (a) what kind of critter it is, and (b) why exactly it's having such a grand ol' time in your tank. Sometimes adding live plants can help remove excess nutrients from the water.

good luck everyone!
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Old 10-28-2003, 11:11 PM   #7
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Hey now that you mention it, SanDiegoCa, I also have brown goo in my tank. It's all over my gravel and some of the glass.

I have two bronze cories, some platies and mollies (and some fry!) in my 20G--will adding a dwarf pleco do anything weird to this community? I keep my water at 80 degrees, and I do add a bit of salt (1 tsp/gallon).

I'm also going to try an algae scraper.

Does this brown algae do any harm to the water or the fish?
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Old 10-29-2003, 12:52 PM   #8
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dear madasafish, in a new tank, its very common to have brown algea and after few weeks with proper lighting and water cond, it will go away and depend on tank setting, it will take 2-6 weeks before it totally gone. then it will follow by other algea such as beard, green etc...

julie, try not to use any algea killer as most of these chemical will harm the fish regardless what the manufacture said. most cases u will not see any direct physical damage (if with recommend dose) but rather indirect or internal damage such as damage to reproductive organ, prone to grow tumor, enlarge of abdominal (not dropsy but the fish just have a abnormally big abdomen) etc...

HTH
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Old 10-31-2003, 10:02 AM   #9
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I have recently won the war against brown algae. It will go away but it will get worse before it gets better.

I would like to know too ... what's the problem with the chinese algae eater?
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Old 10-31-2003, 10:41 PM   #10
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AJ -

from what I understand, they they can get very aggressive as they age, in addition to a loss of interest in eating algae. If you're looking for somebody for algae control, a smaller variety of pleco might be preferrable, as they really do go to town on the algae...and they are very peaceful guys.
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Old 11-01-2003, 07:36 PM   #11
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Sorry SanDiego and AJ. I've not been visiting this forum much recently.

Yep, Sweets summed most of it up. CAEs are and get to be very aggressive. They're no fun to watch when they bully other fish.

Two things Sweets didn't mention:

1) CAEs grow to a whopping 10 inches. They get really big. You'll need a large tank to house one, and large tankmates such as Jack Dempseys and Convicts to match the CAE's aggression.

2) The older they get, the less attractive they get. There's a 7-inch CAE in my LFS and it is ugly, ugly, ugly. In fact, it's almost unrecognizable, as all the pleasing light brown and white coloration disappears. When they get large (actually, this starts to happen when they get 3+") they look *very* plain. [Think] the boring old little fish you catch in ponds. That kind of color, perhaps plainer.

I've got nothing against the fish in general, but they're a real liability in the fish market, as they end up too large and aggressive for most casual (and perhaps even seasoned) aquarists.
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