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Old 12-11-2002, 12:09 PM   #1
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Algae, Algae, Algae!!!!

I finally got a digi camera, more pics of my planted tank will be up when I'm happy with things.

HOWEVER, the algae problems I'm having are driving me nuts.

Cyanobacteria, I won that battle.

Green water, defeated it also.

Current problem, 2, maybe 3 types. Staghorn or black beard algae, not sure which, looks like dirty Santa Claus beard, and clings to leaves and substrate horribly. UGLY stuff!! Also green thread algae, doesn't cling much, but grows so fast you can't believe it. Threads of this crap can grow 6 inches or more in one day. . Currently pretty depressing.

Also, I researched alge eating fish till my eyes were ready to fall out. Decided on Siamese Algae Eaters, supposed to be top-notch. Well, they would rather eat flake food which p*sses me off to no end!


I WILL WIN these battles, but it could take some time. When things are more under control, I'll post pics, but not until I'm happy with the tank.

I've been doing my water changes, I don't overfeed, lights are on for 10 hours.

Doing more reserch now on properly balancing nutrients so that plants thrive and alge doesn't, but it aint easy folks, not easy at all.
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Old 12-11-2002, 12:17 PM   #2
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Shi*, sounds like your having a right old time of things !! I presume your not too close to a window or anything like that, it seems like an awful lot happens to your poor tank/s !
Anyway, keep on researching, it'll be worth it in the end. 8)
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Old 12-11-2002, 12:25 PM   #3
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algae

Have you looked at a couple of Flying Foxes? Sorry, haven't got the scientific name right now. They are good algae eaters. I have a 55 gal at a doctors office that had an algae problem. Water changes and two of these guys have it pretty well in hand. I don't know if they'll touch the beard algae though. I have had this stuff before and it's TOUGH. Here is what I found in one of my books on this stuff. I don't doubt that you already have this info, but here it is anyway.
Beard algae: Fertilization with c02 and iron will help with it. Also might try peat moss in the filter to lower pH and water hardness. According to this book, nothing eats it and you can't get it off the leaves without damaging the plant.
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Old 12-11-2002, 12:51 PM   #4
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Flying foxes are a very close relative of the Siamese Algae eaters, SAE's are supposed to be better, but who really knows. The guys i have are good for some things, they clean the glass crystal clear, and work hard on the plant leaves, but like you said, nobody eats the beard algae.

Also. I'm beyond frustration with my Co2 system. I have now leaked out FOUR bottles of the stuff, (my house plants are growing like mad)! One bottle should last A WHOLE YEAR, something is very wrong. At 12 bucks a refill, its really starting to cost me.

I have checked, rechecked, and triple-frreakin' checked every connection there is on the needle valve, regulator, and tank connection, CANNOT find a leak.

Anybody got a good site for how to work high-pressure Co2? Specifically for finding leaks?
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Old 12-11-2002, 05:17 PM   #5
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I've never really had any algae problems in any of my tanks. How long do you leave the lights on? How often do you do water changes?
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Old 12-11-2002, 08:29 PM   #6
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8 week old tank, flourite substrate, 440 watts of VHO flourescent, 10 hours a day.

Filter eheim 2218, cleaned weekly, 25 % water change every 2 weeks.

Co2 injection (when it works)

0 fertilization at this point. I was told not to fertilize for 2 months minimum.

1 gazillion snails of several varieties.

3 angels, medium sized. 5 dannios, 4 cory cats, 9 SAE's. light feeding regimen, so as not to spoil algae eaters, not working out that way.

Sorry for whining.

The Good news part:
Approximately 45 plants in the tank, prolly 30-35 varieties. They are thriving like mad! Almost all of them have tripled in size, at least. And when I look up through the bottom of the tank, the roots are getting very well established. Lost 1 dannio while cycling, otherwise all fish are health and happy.

I wish there were more plant people here, I feel like a pioneer!
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Old 12-17-2002, 10:47 PM   #7
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Update.

Beard algae is slowing down, not growing as much. I take not much credit, because other than a water change last weeked, I have only done some pruning and manual removal of some algae and affected leaves. For many plants, loosing a few leaves is no big deal, they just grow new ones in a week or so. Other plants, like Java Fern, grow so slowly that leaf removal is fairly detrimental, or will kill them.

The plan at this point is to do some more work on it this weekend. Some of the badly affected plants will have to be pruned down to gravel level, we'll see if they come back. other places, not so severe, and some plants need to be moved as they are too tightly spaced.
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Old 12-18-2002, 01:20 AM   #8
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c02 leaks

How are you checking for leaks on the C02 system? If you haven't tried it already, mix up a solution of dish soap and water and either brush or spray it on all the valves, fittings, and lines. Anywhere it's leaking, you'll get bubbles. Are you using regular air line tubing anywhere on the C02 system? If so, C02 will go right through this stuff...you have to have the tubing that is rated for use with C02. I think icemaker tubing will also work, but I'm not 100% on that. Anyway, just some thoughts.
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Old 12-18-2002, 09:32 AM   #9
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Logan,

First, Holiday season has not left me the time to do everything I want with my tank, frustrating, but that's life.

I have CO2 safe tubing, no prob there. The soapy water didn't work for me. I even bought some leak detector fluid from the place i buy co2 from, no results either. Good suggestions though, appreciate it.

My plan at this point is to use the old bicycle flat tire trick. In other words, I'm going to fill up a bucket with water and submerge the whole dang system, just for a few seconds, don't want to ruin my regulator and needle valve. That has GOT to show me where the leak is coming from. Right now, I have a full tank, but its totally unhooked untill I get the problem worked out.
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Old 12-18-2002, 09:44 AM   #10
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leaks

Yeah...I can understand about the holidays making for little time. Strange that the soap trick didn't work...I have found some really tiny leaks in LP gas systems with that one. Is it a fairly new tank? I once had an 02 tank on my torches that leaked down. Turned out it was seeping where the valve screwed into the tank...scary thought when you think about how much pressure is on that thing! I guess the submerge it and see is about the only weapon left to you. Good luck with it and let us know what the end result is.
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Old 12-21-2002, 03:26 PM   #11
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Hello!Brand new member here.This will sound strange but I"m glad to find that someone else has this algae problem as well.I have the stuff mostly on the power head and the older plants in my community tank.So far nothing works other than pruning leaves and manual removal.I agree that pics of a tank with this stuff look bad no matter how good the rest of the tank looks. I'm going to try to clean it up as well as possible and try some Kent products to strengthen the plants to use up the nutrients in the water.I also just put in a couple of Ameca Splendens from Mexico that are definitely eating that rotten looking beard algae I also stopped co2 as well.The plants are fine and the algae growth seems to have slowed down.
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Old 01-12-2003, 07:32 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by corvuscorax
I wish there were more plant people here, I feel like a pioneer!
I'm starting to really find myself interested in plants thats forsure.

I also notice beard algae growing rapidly in the planted tank and I'm thinking it may have been from the cycle its a fairly young tank we got it on November 8th 2002, had to grab the receipt to figure that out lol.

I was considering on grabbing 4 ottos to help fight this stuff, and maybe SAE's
I also heard cutting plant nutriets helps aswell??? Been told that not sure?
I think i'm going to at least keep the CO2 in, and try just adding more stock.
The fish shop just got a large shipment in so i may go in and see whats available couple more plants is intended thats on the list.
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Old 01-12-2003, 10:40 AM   #13
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My current status is this.

Staghorn/beard algae nearly gone/imperceptible. String algae, pops up here and there, but pretty easily removed.

Now I have some very dark green algae in a few spots, only attached to gravel, very short stuff, grows slowly. I think I can live with it.

My tank is fairly new also, so I believe it was all part of a nutrient cycle type thing. This is just my own theory, flying by the seat of my pants here.

I would definitley keep the co2 going, in the long run it wil help the plants beat the algae.

My current dilema is water column fertilization. I feritlize the substrate, but no liquid fert as of yet. I think some of my plants need it due to me seeing yellowing of some leaves and others just melting away. I cannot decide which way to go with that yet.


Also, algae eating fish. My sae's sometimes appear to be working hard to eat algae, other times, I come near the tank and they come up to the top, begging for flake just like everybody else in the tank. I'd like to hear some experiences with ottos, see if they are better.
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Old 01-12-2003, 09:59 PM   #14
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I haven't gotten the Ottos yet but I am going to try them i'll definatly let you know,
another thing i hear fights it is Melafix
safe for plants and a good item all around in a tank
I think i'm going to treat my tank with it.
and the Ottos
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Old 01-14-2003, 09:31 AM   #15
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Can this algea be green?

I had a green stringy algea growing in the tank until I tore the tank down and cleaned it. The algea got that bad. After I set the tank back up, I noticed the algea had come right back as expected, though quicker than anticipated. I reduced the light to 7 hours a day and noticed that the algea turned grey and now it's not present in the tank. I'm not sure if it's Staghorn algea or not, because the picture in the thread shows a grey algea and I couldn't find a picture of this algea on the web.

Whatever algea it was, I'm happy that the lower light got rid of it, or maybe it was the plecos.
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Old 01-14-2003, 10:16 AM   #16
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Mr CorvusCorax actually forgot to mention to you all that his tank is actually a rainforest & jungle all in one !!

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Old 01-14-2003, 03:12 PM   #17
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I was also told blacking out the tank works aswell
just wrap the tank in black waste bags avoid using the lights for two days or so and that is suppose to help pretty good, so I was told
I never tryed it but was told it works,


I got three brisstle nose plecs a Sail fin and lastnight I took a SAE from another tank and put him in,
and i'm treating with Melafix aswell
hopefully that will cut my beard algae
the newest bristle nose loves hanging out in my Difformis which is showing the most beard algae.
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