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Old 06-16-2007, 05:27 PM   #1
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Grey/Brown dust on plants, not Diatoms

i have this problem in both my 10 gallon planted tanks (but not in any other tanks )

Tank #1
10 Gallons
1 Dwarf Puffer
1 Sumo Loach
hand full of ramshorn snails
Excel
EI Dosing
Tap water is very hard
2x 20 watt u-shaped screw in CF bulbs
Natural Gravel (very small grained)

Tank #2
10 Gallons
pair Apistogramma nijsseni
1 Otocinclus
Ramshorns and MTS
DIY CO2 @ +40 ppm
EI Dosing
RO water w/ just a little RO Right to keep things stable]
30 watts T8 Light
Eco-Compleat

both tanks run an Aqua Clear 30 Filter (heavy on the Mechanical filtration)

i know it is not diatoms, i believe that it is some kind of product of decomposing plant matter, but i can not seam to clean it well enough to make it go away.

i do weely 75% pwc on both tanks with extensive gravel vac-ing

suggestions on
1. what it is
2. how to make it go away as it is just an eye sore.
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Old 06-16-2007, 10:22 PM   #2
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I had that too for a long time in each of my tanks, never figured out what it was either.
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Old 06-17-2007, 08:11 PM   #3
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its the eco.

I had regular black gravel in my 5gal for a really long time, then i added eco and got the same thing. It went away, but it comes back once in a while.
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Old 06-17-2007, 08:47 PM   #4
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It doesn't just appear with Eco Complete. I've had it in my aquariums and never had Eco Complete. In most cases it has occurred right as other algae problems are starting to clear up, and is the last thing to finally disappear.
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Old 06-17-2007, 09:43 PM   #5
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Interesting...I have the same thing...I also have Eco but also think my nitrates have likely bottomed out (E. tenellus is getting pale on old leaves) and assumed it went along with that. (Apparently my fish don't poop as much as I think... ) I don't have any other algae issues in that tank though...but my guess was some nutrient imbalance.
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Old 06-18-2007, 01:50 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WaterPond
its the eco.

I had regular black gravel in my 5gal for a really long time, then i added eco and got the same thing. It went away, but it comes back once in a while.
only the Apisto tank has Eco, the DP tanks (where the pictures are from) has Red-Flint gravel

i have not had any algae problems (knock on wood) in either tanks for quite some time...6 + months

i am a little sloppy with the dosing though...

1/4 tsp KNO3
1/4 tsp KSO4
1/4 tsp CSM+B
and 1/8 tsp KH2PO4

per week in each tank
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75 Gallon: New World Cichlids|26 Gallon Bowfront: Planted Angelfish/Swordtail Tank|20 Gallon Long: "Nano" non-reef|10 Gallon: frog and mosquito fish
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Old 06-23-2007, 08:36 AM   #7
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Grrr.... add BGA to the DP tank again...
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Old 06-26-2007, 10:30 AM   #8
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I have it and attribute it to overfeeding/plant debris breakdown. If you flick a leaf with your finger it should float off. It just settles on the leaves. I find that filter floss in my HOB helped to lessen this but once it settles on the leaves you have to manually get it off. I have a small stick that I use every other day or so to gently agitate the plants which free's up this junk which either settles to the substrate (where my army of MTS consume it) or it gets sucked up into the filter.

Lower your feedings (or type of food you feed, as mine is caused by my home-made frozen fish food that really clouds the water since I forgot to use gelatin!), or increase your tank flow to prevent the junk from resting on the leaves.

Goodluck.
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Old 06-26-2007, 10:59 AM   #9
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I first started getting this in my community tank (non-planted) during the fishless cycle (no feedings). I did find floss helped to keep it in check, and it eventually went away. It's light and easy enough to vaccuum out easily, so cleanup wasn't difficult, but it was annoying.
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