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Algae Algae Control - Get some advice for your algae problems. Control algae in your aquarium with the solutions given here.

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Old 07-21-2005, 07:15 AM   #11 (permalink)
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TWood and aquaverde,

You guys have got to be joking. Is that for real?
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Old 07-21-2005, 07:21 AM   #12 (permalink)
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by |squee|
TWood and aquaverde,

You guys have got to be joking. Is that for real?
Not joking at all. Every time I added driftwood to my tanks I got runaway BBA. Removed the driftwood, the BBA faded away. I now have BBA and driftwood free tanks without doing anything else to get rid of the BBA. Try it yourself if you are having BBA problems in a tank with driftwood.

EDIT: Just speculating here, but I think the driftwood provides resources to the BBA that allows it to create a bounty of spores that eventually overwhelm the rest of the tank. Driftwood is, after all, a huge chunk of decaying matter and BBA is evolved to decay that matter.

TW

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Old 07-21-2005, 08:36 AM   #13 (permalink)
 
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I would not argue againt BBA loving to infest driftwood or rocks prefericially.

Adding more fast growing stem plants helps more than adding wood.

But it's quite possible and easy to prevent BBA on wood but good environmental conditions(CO2) as well as herbivores like Amano shrimp and SAE's.

When the CO2 falls, then you'll get BBA on wood first, then rocks/equipment next and finally plants.

I would suggest mossing or ferning the wood good if tyou want to keep it and crank the CO2, then check the CO2 religiously for awhile till things stabilize.

Regards,
Tom Barr
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Old 07-21-2005, 09:00 AM   #14 (permalink)
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by plantbrain
But it's quite possible and easy to prevent BBA on wood but good environmental conditions(CO2) as well as herbivores like Amano shrimp and SAE's.
Sorry to have to say it Tom, but I think this is terrible advice. Amano shrimp and SAEs don't eat established BBA, are ridiculously overpriced, and die/are eaten easily. Been there, done that, never again. Also, regarding driftwood, why introduce a problem that requires more management instead of not introducing the problem to begin with?

But on to a larger issue.

It's my understanding that you are in San Fran where your primary water source is snowmelt. I think you need to work with other science types in other parts of the country/world with different water sources and see if some of your conclusions hold water. ;-/

In particular, I think that those of us with water from the limestone aquifers just have a different chemistry at work that you are not taking into account. I'd really like to see you work with other people in other parts of the country/world that have broad extremes of localized water parameters.

You've also posted about green dust algae (GDA) being hard to maintain in your tanks. Many of us in the limestone aquifer areas of the country have the reverse experience. I think location is related to both the GDA and BBA issues and that you are missing that relationship unless you work with the water we are stuck with.

I have a high respect for you and your work, but I think there's something about basic local water parameters that needs to taken into account.

TW
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Old 07-21-2005, 09:58 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by plantbrain
I would not argue againt BBA loving to infest driftwood or rocks prefericially.

Adding more fast growing stem plants helps more than adding wood.
That makes sense. Wood and rocks don't compete with algae, but plants do.


Quote:
Originally Posted by plantbrain
When the CO2 falls, then you'll get BBA on wood first, then rocks/equipment next and finally plants.
This has been my observation (I have observed quite a bit of BBA growth by now with this tank), although it hasn't touched the few stem plants I have, just the slow growers. As far as it being caused by wood I wonder. I also have a 10 gallon with a large piece of wood in it and I don't have a spec of BBA (although it is packed with Red Cherry shrimp). The fact that it is wood seems irrelivant. Wood, rock, plastic, metal whatever I think the key is that the BBA seems to prefer static and somewhat rough surfaces for the stuff to grow on. I say rough because I've never yet seen the stuff grow on the glass.

Quote:
Originally Posted by plantbrain
I would suggest mossing or ferning the wood good if tyou want to keep it and crank the CO2, then check the CO2 religiously for awhile till things stabilize.
Yes this has been beneficial and besides unplanted driftwood in a planted tank- no way
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Old 07-21-2005, 01:02 PM   #16 (permalink)
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I wonder if the addition of driftwood releases tannins that interfere with the KH/pH/CO2 measurement/relationship and therefore we actually get lower CO2 levels than we think we have?

This then induces BBA and you assume that its directly related to the wood?

Just a thought...
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Old 07-21-2005, 01:40 PM   #17 (permalink)
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TWood,

Tom's advice holds water in freaking Dallas and in freaking Greece too. That is what I know first hand. Maybe all the other cities/countries in the world are different, but it's not likely.

I do agree with you that removing a heavily infested wood is a good idea. BBA is slow to go away and it certainly helps to remove it manually. One can't expect to win that battle quickly so by removing the wood BBA is hit pretty badly.

What people often don't understand about shrimp and SAE's is that they will not help with a heavy infestation. "Heavy algae infestation" is also misunderstood. This is BBA infestation beyond "heavy". And this is staghorn infestation beyond "heavy". A lot of people believe that such infestation is manageable and it is but it is not what shrimp and SAE's will take care of.

Shrimp and SAE should be used to help with algae when they are still invisible for our eyes but just starting to spread. Or with very light infestations that are only few days old. Good water parameters prepare the "stage" and the algae eaters only finish the cleaning. Tons of shrimp (1-2 per gallon) will clean a tank from algae but not from all types of algae and certainly not a tank that has algae like on the pictures above.

About BBA in particular I noticed that it increases day after a night when a shrimp dies during molting. I observed that 3 times now and really start to believe that BBA loves organics floating in the water. It is possible that the wood releases some organics or that the wood is a perfect substrate for the BBA to attach with its suction cup-like base. In any case maintaining the wood clean should be considered a high priority and once again - temporary removal or permanent mossing is a good idea according to me too.

--Nikolay
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Old 07-21-2005, 06:04 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Laith
I wonder if the addition of driftwood releases tannins that interfere with the KH/pH/CO2 measurement/relationship and therefore we actually get lower CO2 levels than we think we have?

This then induces BBA and you assume that its directly related to the wood?

Just a thought...
I think that is a good point and IME found this to be true, although as the wood gets older (and leaches less tannins) it is less of an issue.
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Old 07-22-2005, 07:50 AM   #19 (permalink)
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Quote:
Amano shrimp and SAEs don't eat established BBA, are ridiculously overpriced, and die/are eaten easily.
That has not been my experience, for the most part. Recently I left off my co2 for 2 weeks and returned to a tank with bba growing on wood, gravel and some anubias leaves. I fished out one of 2 sae's from another tank and put him in the bba tank. Two days later, I couldn't find any bba. Like Niko says, if you put them into a situation where the bba is overwhelming, they may not be able to take care of it. But I fully believe that they will keep it under control before it becomes visible to us.

As far as Tom's water, I'm sure he will chime in here, but I can tell you he lived in Gainesville, Fl for a couple of years (also my home), and all our water comes from limestone aquifers. I can also take you to numerous fresh water springs around here flowing out of limestone caves and show you lots of healthy plants growing without bba.

Quote:
I wonder if the addition of driftwood releases tannins that interfere with the KH/pH/CO2 measurement/relationship and therefore we actually get lower CO2 levels than we think we have?
I have heard others comment in a similar vein to this. I tend to regard my co2 numbers as underestimates, if anything. I do also have fair amounts of wood in my tanks.
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Old 07-22-2005, 11:07 PM   #20 (permalink)
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TWood
Sorry to have to say it Tom, but I think this is terrible advice.
I think I've got more BBA issues solved than the average bear.

You'll note I did not suggest *only* this solution with Shrimp and SAE's.
CO2 was the main focus and is always the case with BBA as my advice on BBA goes back 10+ years and I've been correct about it for 10 years as well................

Quote:
Amano shrimp and SAEs don't eat established BBA,
They will not hurt very well established BBA infestions, but they do prevent and can deal with mild ones. Correcting the environmental issues that induce BBA is the best method(poor CO2)

Quote:
are ridiculously overpriced,
That's why we give our shrimps away here The cherry's are quite breedable(so these are free) and several other folks here are giving away Amano's.
Group buys reduce the cost way down.

I trade weeds for shrimps and since I have a few tanks without fish, I have a large supply of live food for other non shrimp tanks(eg Altums).
SAE's are cheap.

Quote:
and die/are eaten easily.
Depends on the tank and the livestock, I'll assume the poster knows not to put tiny critters in with big fish with big mouths.

Quote:
Been there, done that, never again. Also, regarding driftwood, why introduce a problem that requires more management instead of not introducing the problem to begin with?

Err........ because we like driftwood in our tanks and like ferns and moss and anubias growing all over it? I have no issues with wood and BBA........most folks can manage that issue with wood.

Quote:
It's my understanding that you are in San Fran where your primary water source is snowmelt. I think you need to work with other science types in other parts of the country/world with different water sources and see if some of your conclusions hold water. ;-/
Well, you just put your foot in your mouth.
I have one client in SF. The Bay area itself comprises over 6 completely different types and sources of tap water.

Marin where I lived for 15 years: high PO4, KH : 5, Gh 9.
SF: Almost RO like.
San Jose: KH 8, GH 12(depending, can go higher)
East Bay: KH 2, GH 1-3, PO4: 0.5ppm

We in sfbaaps/SFAS know our own water types and have discussed the differences for 15+ years now.

Next: I have lived elsewhere than the bay area, I lived in Santa Barabara for 2 years: GH 24, KH 12, PO4: zero.

Florida: 2 years: KH 3, GH 5, no PO4.

Sacramento CA: KH 2, GH 1 some times, KH 5, GH 8 others depending on the source/time of year.

APD past discussions ad nauseum comparing many folks tap waters and seeing how PO4 and other elements impacted their tank as well as the supposed notion of hard water soft preferences for plants.
I've been to dozens of aquarium societies and spoken to both Marine and Freshwater folks about plants. They tell me about their tap water and I ask.
I'm not keen on the plants needing "soft" water Bs that was all the rage 10-40 years ago. LFS's would sell aquarist RO systems for all sorts of things that really did not help in many cases and none in terms of plants.

I'm hardly the "ivory tower" intellectual.
This is practical long term experience going back to when I was kid.
No aquarist even considered RO in the 1970's.

Quote:
In particular, I think that those of us with water from the limestone aquifers just have a different chemistry at work that you are not taking into account.
Are you insane?
Florida is all Karst(limestone), I grew up and kept fish and plants in IN, the same place that quarried the stone that built the Empire state building which is limestone as well as most of IU campus where I ran around as kid.
I just got back from taking 10 folks down no less than 4 clear hard limestone springs at plant fest. Santa Barbara's water source is Lake Cachuma which is fed by the Satna Ynez river through extremely high mineral desposit that make Lake Tangy and Malawi look like soft water systems(GH's in the river were 800ppm+ beyond the Lamotte kit's range, Cl's also).

Quote:
I'd really like to see you work with other people in other parts of the country/world that have broad extremes of localized water parameters.
Well, you need but open thy eyeballs.
Bring your test kit and test all the folk's in the Bay area's tap.
We have a wide range, seasonal ranges.
We've been at that for many years/decades now.

It's not just me and I've asked folks these types fo questions for many years on many forums, mailing list and in person.

Quote:
You've also posted about green dust algae (GDA) being hard to maintain in your tanks.
Man Tom, you are just making this too easy.
I lived in Santa Barbara when I first had my fiorst run with it, the tap is KH 12, GH 24.

Limestone...........
Same deal..........

Softer water in FL(KH 3, Gh 5), same deal.............

Both times, same thing.

That was easy to rule out as a correlation as my "success".

Quote:
Many of us in the limestone aquifer areas of the country have the reverse experience. I think location is related to both the GDA and BBA issues and that you are missing that relationship unless you work with the water we are stuck with.
And you would be incorrect.
I have a very high success rate dealing with algae and helping folks.
There is a reason and it's not the tap water except in 2 cases(out of many thousands, but we stil found out why it had issues and one case had distribution copper pipes all over the places, the other was using saline well water) which if the first set of advice does not work, we go to step 2 and so on in a step wise manner.

No single post can address every thing unless it's a book. Even then, experience play a huge role.

Quote:
I have a high respect for you and your work, but I think there's something about basic local water parameters that needs to taken into account.

TW
I do and have, I know very well what is and is not significant with respect to tap. Obviously...more than you know.

And I also know what applies to marine systems..........

Regards,
Tom Barr
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