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Old 02-12-2007, 07:58 AM   #1
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22 month-old tank 150G

Hey Guys! Haven't been here in a long, long time! Been busy farming algea, LOL Seriously, I got sort of totally discouraged
with the brown algea (you can see some on the driftwood). This stuff covers everything, plants, pipes, etc.

This is my tank at 22 months... I had gone back to low-tech for a period, 60w lights, no CO2, etc. to no avail. So I am gradually going back high-tech again, 444W, CO2, and see what happens.
At least, I have got to try different plants. Some do better than other in my tank, some immediately get covered with this algea while others seem to repel it. So the bad ones I just pull out!

My question is: at this point, does it make sense to re-start this tank completely? and when you have only one tank, how do you go about it?
Would it eliminate the algea problem? probably not, right? I find my "aquascaping" kinda boring... I think a "hill" on the right side would look much better,
but if I attempt something like this, oh what a mess it will be!

Anyways, good to be back here, any comments welcome!
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Old 02-12-2007, 10:24 AM   #2
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You state that you're dealing with brown algae. Have you been able to identify what you're actually dealing with? Does it brush off easily or is it hard to remove?

What size tank is it?
How are you injecting CO2? What are your CO2 levels (pH and KH)?
What kind of dosing are you using?

I think it makes a lot more sense to deal with the current problem. That way you know you can beat it if it ever comes back, instead of constantly letting it defeat you.
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Old 02-12-2007, 11:26 AM   #3
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Well I don't think it looks boring at all. IME brown algae tends to favor lower lighting and really doesn't last all that long.

I would go back to the hi tech set up. You've already made the investment, right? Some things you might want to try....

1. Increase the number of stem plants. Especially fast growing species like Elodea and Hygro.
2. Try adding some algae eaters. SAEs, and otos in particular.

Some algae will always be present. If it gets out of hand something is out of balance. It takes a little time (and test kits are important to know where you stand), but the balancing act can be done.
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Old 02-12-2007, 12:51 PM   #4
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Thanks guys, good advice for sure... starting over wont do much for learning anything.
and come to think of it, that brown stuff started appearing when I ran out of CO2 the first time around. Then I had reduced the lighting which was just adding to the problem I think...
Anyways, I just cleaned the pH meter probe and check for calibration, everything running fine, and am going back to the PMDD (all in one), instead of trying to dose everything separately,
this is where I get confused, that stuff needs to be simple. So I will dose 10-15ml twice per week (does that sound ok?) and test my parameters and see where it goes from there.
If what I read all over really works, that brown algea should eventually dissapear...
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Old 02-12-2007, 01:02 PM   #5
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The main problem with using PPMD is that it doesn't contain Phosphates. A lack of Phosphates with limit the use of other nutrients and cause Green Spot Algae.
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Old 02-12-2007, 02:09 PM   #6
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Dont I get enough phosphates with overfeeding, decaying plants & other stuff in the tank and filter box?
According to my testkit (Hagen), I get a reading of 1.0 mg/l
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Old 02-12-2007, 02:49 PM   #7
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Well, well...welcome back kaaikop, I did wonder where you'd gone. Things have changed around here too, including this thing called IE. IMO, IE would work for you much better than PMDD. I cannot link what IE is (darn work filters) but it is simply dosing a set amount of nutrients weekly and changing 50% of the tank at the end of the week.

PS - Tank still looks great...stick around and see the changes, including my tank if you like.
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Old 02-12-2007, 02:53 PM   #8
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Generally in a low to medium light tank, you'll have enough phosphates from feeding etc. In high light tanks the plants are generally using up nutrients so fast that you need to dose more of everything including phosphates. Also it's best not to overfeed or leave plants in the tank to decay, as these will cause other problems.

Please take into account that these are general rules, and will not apply to every tank. You may find that once you get everything back into balance you still have plenty of phosphates and don't need to dose any, or you could also find that getting the tank back into balance results in increased phosphate uptake which would lead to the phosphates bottoming out and a need for dosing.
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Old 02-12-2007, 02:55 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jchillin
Well, well...welcome back kaaikop, I did wonder where you'd gone. Things have changed around here too, including this thing called IE. IMO, IE would work for you much better than PMDD. I cannot link what IE is (darn work filters) but it is simply dosing a set amount of nutrients weekly and changing 50% of the tank at the end of the week.

PS - Tank still looks great...stick around and see the changes, including my tank if you like.
LOL... actually as JChillin knows but forgot to tell his fingers, it's EI (Estimative Index) and not IE (Internet Explorer). Here's a link to the basic approach without the extra scientific backing to why it works.
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Old 02-12-2007, 04:02 PM   #10
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Thanks for the link, this is definately for me, LOL Nice & simple.
I need to study this a bit, but it makes a lot of sense, I just need to figure out how much to dose, say twice per week or something.
If it could stay that simple and work, that would be perfect.

JChillin! Good to see you! I saw your tank... Man, you have become a Master!
I am green with envy!!! I saw lot of people are having success with their tanks, shows that
if you dont give up, it can be done.
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Old 02-12-2007, 04:24 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Purrbox
actually as JChillin knows but forgot to tell his fingers, it's EI (Estimative Index) and not IE (Internet Explorer).
Wow, thank goodness you caught that. My dyslexia aside, kaaikop would have had tons of fun trying to locate "IE" in relation to plants. *Microsoft grows plants too* Yeah, things really got going awhile back, tons of successful tanks and what not.

PS - Me no master.
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Old 02-12-2007, 06:33 PM   #12
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En Francais, il est l'Index Estimatif. IE est bon :P
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Old 02-12-2007, 08:28 PM   #13
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How practical is EI (IE for short) in a 150 Gallon tank where each water change is 75 Gallons and the amount of Co2 required to get the PH back down? The PH swing introduced by the water change would be massive. I get a swing of .5-.6 with my reactor going, and that's only a 40Gallon change. You would be looking at a full 1 PH swing.. Just a little concerned about the quantities. IE is great for tanks that are under 75Gallons, but once you get into the bigger tanks it seems like a bit of a waste (of everything, Water, Co2, Ferts..)

Maybe it's just me tho..
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Old 02-12-2007, 09:04 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by travis simonson
En Francais, il est l'Index Estimatif. IE est bon :P
Translation: "In French, it is the Estimated Index. IE is good".

You may have a valid point there Wizz, I had not considered the volume of water going out.
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Old 02-12-2007, 09:13 PM   #15
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I just did a 30-40% water change... was experimenting with my dosing, trying to get a good recipe based on EI (had overdone it with Phosphates).
pH went up from 6,3 to 6,4... not too bad... Phosphates down from 5 to 2.5 ppm (whew, much better...)
I am just realizing that I was WAY too conservative with my dosings. I had never had any positive Nitrate reading in this tank... no kidding, with the small quantities I was dosing...
Using "Chucks" calculator, I have just realized how much I have to dose NO3 to get from 0 to, say 5 ppm... that is like 25 times what I was putting in my tank in a week, LOL.

Hey Travis! good to see you! your tank still look like a first prize winner!
Seriously, you should think about writing a book about your tank, there are way too few good aquarium books out there,
and with what you have achieved with your tank, I'm sure everyone here in the forum would be a buyer! 8)
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Old 02-12-2007, 09:46 PM   #16
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Travis - Je suis étonné... C'est une blague ou bien tu parle vraiment français ? (just harassing Travis in French a bit)

Kaaikop - On the NO3 thing, I agree, I was shocked in the beginning at how much I needed to dose... Works though...
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Old 02-12-2007, 09:57 PM   #17
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Travis - Je suis étonné... C'est une blague ou bien tu parle vraiment français ? (just harassing Travis in French a bit)
Oui, je parle un peu de Francais. Ich spreche auch eine kleine Deutsch. I also speak enough Swahili to find the bar :P
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Old 02-12-2007, 10:06 PM   #18
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aaah maar spreekt u het Nederlands?


=)
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Old 02-12-2007, 10:08 PM   #19
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aaah maar spreekt u het Nederlands?=)
Que? No habla. :P
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Old 02-12-2007, 10:11 PM   #20
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Sorry, kaaikop. Didn't mean to drag this thread off-topic. Thanks for the book suggestion, you flatter me
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