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Algae ID and Solution (with pics!)

1552 Views 7 Replies 3 Participants Last post by  tex627
Hello, this is my tank. 40 Gallon, 5 Platy, 1 Sword Tail and 2 X-ray Tetra. Ammonia : 0, Nitrite : 0 , Nitrate : 0 , Ph : 6.0. Eh... no kH and gK testkit ... yet.

Lighting is on for 10 hours. I have 4 bulbs at 36w, 6400k. Fert is API Leaf Zone. (Soluble Potash 3.00% , Iron 0.10% , to dose 5ml per 38L per week) I dose 20ml per week, since my tank is about 180L. I also have some kind of Ball Fert which I put in my Eheim Pickup Internal Filter. The Active Ingredients were not stated. All it says are to 'put in place of high ventilation'.

(Note : I am very new to plants, of all the plants in the aquarium, I only know the java fern, anubias, windelov , java moss and asian ambulia. I bought the rest as I thought the were easy to keep. I know I shouldnt have done that. but oh well...)


Now, the Algae problem. There seems to be 2 types. The 1st one (I COULD NOT get pictures) is developed on the glass, it looks like a mist. (Like dew on the car window in the mornings.)

The 2nd one (Pics below, brown and mostly in spots.) is also growing on my glass but also on my Java Fern, Windelov and Anubias, and even on or inside of my Eheim Picku Filter !! Im pretty sure it is that kind of algae on the plants as there was once I was able to 'rub it off' them.

(Brown spots on the plant leafs and covers some of the edges as well.)

(Note the filter closer to the background, the lower part.)

Can anyone tell me what kind of Algae those are? And what is the remedy?


side topic : am planning to get a bottom dweller for eating algae. Something that will maintain the algae and eat alage on plants without damaging them... Any small (<15 cm) sucker fishes to recommend? and it is really necessary to keep cories and ottos in groups of 6? how bout 3?
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Have a look at this article here:

It's a good summary of the basics. The nutrient section is especially important. It will be a lot easier to answer your questions if you've read it. I don't have time to give you more help right now, but that should get you started at least.
Actually.. I already read that.. haha

so how do I measure exactly how much of each metal I have in my aquarium? That ball fert thing I have in my filter doesnt even state any thing that it contains..

Also, I did some research and think that the algae can be diatoms or 'red' algae..

If I get a Siamaese Algae Eater, will it eat the algae on the leaves without damaging them?

You're talking about micro nutrients? Go with recommended amounts and see how things look.

The only thing you should be measuring are macro nutrients. With time, you'll be able to do that by eye as well.

Otocinclus catfish will consume diatoms. The real solution, however, is proper fertilization. A bandaid approach to algae problems is not the true path to success.
by eye? wow ..

i know.. algae eating fish is not a solution.. i was thinking about maintenance wise..

anyways thanks for the help !
by eye? wow ..
Lots of people can do that. It's really not a big deal. In the meantime, just keep reading and let us know if you've got any more questions.
yea .. I read rex grigg article.. the guy hu served in the army.. it was really helpful.. esp in the nutrients part..

I want to know if the tank can still get cycled the same way? im suspecting it might not be cycled. (i use the increase fish stocking bit by bit over time method ).

but how do I know how much bio load I need, because the plants might use up the ammonia faster than the bacteria can get to it..

i'm new to this hobby but when i started using ferts. i just started out dosing really little and increased about 20% every one or 2 weeks once i saw that there wasnt a breakout of algae. so i would suggest you to decrease the amount of ferts your dosing first and wait until the algae growth slows down or goes away. then you could increase your dosage a little by little until you find the amouunt of ferts your plants need. by doing this, you're controling the amount of extra nutrients in the water therefore, controling amount of algae. along with some ottos and amanos i think the algae problem should be solved. i heard SAEs get aggressive and stops eating algae when they get older so i wouldnt reccomend SAEs.
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