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Discussion Starter #1
i have an algae war in my tank...
40gal
1.5wpg @10 hrs
6.6 ph
78 to 81 temp
co2 @ about 1 bubble per 1.5 second (24hrs a day)
i dont remember the gh, but i remember it being in the norm.
16 rummynose tetras, 4 panda corries, ghost shrimp, 5 ottos, 1 bristlenose pleco, and about a million malaysian trumpets, and unfortunately some unwanted pond snails, and worse of all COLUMBIAN ramshorn....

the tank is about halffull with plants, looking for more.
2 amazon swords, 1 very large anubias nana, a big bunch of java ferns, some dwindling dwarf onions, and val natans, and about 5 stems of asian ambulia that i cant keep up with algae removal which would otherwise be double that in about a week. there is a couple leftover stems of green cabomba that has failed since i switched to less light and lowered the co2.
i will be add more low to medium light plants like java moss, dwarf sag, nymphaea daubenyana(if i can ever find it) and maybe some of the marsilea species... so i dont mind the lower light levels because i actually prefer stability over rapid growth

now the light is provided by 2 30watt flours [a third is available, but the algae grew faster and the tank heated up to much] [but when i was running 90 watts and about 1.5 bps of co2 i had the amazon swords and green cabomba pearling.....but so was the algae!!!
i have a canister filter doing a good job...and i do about a 20% water change every weekend(usually....., i have missed a weekend on occasion but never missed 2 in a row)
when i do the water change i pull out grips of algea and add flourish complete @ the dosage on the bottle...
there is no direct sunlight, but it isnt a dark room either...

what else should i be doing. will the addition of more plants, ferts, co2, or light help the issue.
 

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I might have missed it, but what type of algae do you have?
How old is this tank?
What is the KH, nitrate and phosphate level?


Virtually all algae issues can be taken care of with lots of plant growth and nutrient balance.

Your tank is pretty much slow growers and you are only moderately planted. It this is a new tank, algae is not uncomon, but can be mitigated deastically by having a tank full of fast growers and slowly change to the slow growers.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
i think that it may actually be Blue-green algae or Cyanobacteria
it creates large sheets that cover over plants, substrate, and everyting it sight....i have some other types but that is the main culprit....i have seen a few spots of brush algae on the tips of plant leaves, and a very small amount of green spot on the glass, when the light was higher...

the tank is about 6 months old and the algae or cyanobacteria has grown ever increasing.
the initial brown algae was defeated by the ottos

i will check the kh, nitrate, and phosphate along with all other parameters tonight when i get home....and i will get back to you....

by the way, thanx for the quick reply....
 

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Luke,

If you indeed have BGA then the fight would be somewhat easy.

Start by manually removing the algae from everything you can. Syphon the gravel, even if you syphon some of the gravel with the algae that is ok.

Get some Erythromycin from any pet store. 200 mg (1 pill) treats 20 gals.
Add accordingly directly to the tank. Don't worry about the fish or the bacteria in the filter.

Repeat the dosage for 2-3 days.

Manually remove any remaining BGA, if any.

Do a 50% water change.

Test your Nitrates and Phosphates. Most likely your Nitrates are too low or even zero. Make sure you always have some Nitrate in the water.

Done (in most BGA cases).

For the rest of the algae - meticulously maintain perfect water conditions to make the plants grow. Remove all algae manually every day if possible. If all of your test kits are precise and you indeed provide the plants with a lot of light/CO2/Nutrients it will take a few weeks untill you will be over your algae problem.

--Nikolay
 

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Some suggestions, but keep and eye on it and vary according to the effect:

- aerate the water at night, lights-out period, with an airstone - it might help improve water quality.

- prune affected leaves - at the very least gently rub off with fingers affected leaves. Stem plants are best pruned.

- dose Flourish Excel. Even though you have CO2, something in Flourish Excel limits and kills BGA - practical experience speaking here. Flourish Excel, as far as I know, does not harm fish or plants - that is my experience. I would not personally use algaecides.

- as Niko says, vacuum and remove with fingers from rocks and plants and pipes etc... vacuum again in a day. Manual removal is effective.

- Twice a week water changes of 50% might also help - vacuuming usually requires a water change anyway.

- if you have an open top tank, smell the water in passing. That is a good clue as to what is happening. Bad smells = bad things including BGA.

- keep the CO2 up and I would, with a 40g tank have it at 1 bps - meaning keep up a reasonably constant high level rather that reducing it as a means of facing off BGA.

Keep an eye on it... stay on top of the task and you will have no problem eradicating BGA.

Andrew Cribb
 

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Discussion Starter #6
thanx guys for all the great help, it is definetly BGA....
i now have a plan of attack....but i dont know about the 50% water change. my rummys get wacky with anything over 25%...maybe i will just do a 20 percent every 2 days untill i get it all out...
gomer- i didnt have those kits, i have others but the gh was actually higher than it used to be 11ppm, i guess because i lowered the co2, this weekend i am going to pick up those other kits.....i plan on adding more plants, raise the co2 a bit, and turn the 3rd light on for a couple hours in the middle of the day...thanx, i will let you know of the progress...
 

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You can simply turn off the lights for 3 days for 100% effective ness in killing it.

There is no need for antibiotics. The blackout is FREE, antibiotics are not.

Add KNO3 and check the GH.
Check the KH/pH as it relates to CO2 concentration. Measure the pH at night before the lights go off and when the lights first come on.

Regards,
Tom Barr
 

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Increasing the light will drive the uptake of both NO3/CO2 etc higher.

That will make stabilizing the NO3/CO2 tougher, not easier.
Until that is addressed and the tank can do well with 1.5w/gal, I'd not increase the lighting.

It is a myth that a planted tank does not greatly benefit from CO2 at low light, it's actually one of the most stable combinations around and the most logical for slowing growth rates down but still getting a middle ground as far as health.

Algae control is about as good as non CO2 tanks.

Regards,
Tom Barr
 

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Discussion Starter #10
first off, thanx for all the replies and great advice.
i manually removed all the blue-green algae[cynobacteria].
i then did a 25% water change.
i added the proper dosage of erythromyacin.
the next day my rummynoses were really bright, they must have really benefited from the antibiotic[since it was for sale as a fish cure-all] or they just really appreciated my hard work.
i waited 1 day and cleaned and changed the filter pads in my canister filter[rena filstar]
not wanting to lose all of my beneficial bacteria i waited 1 more day and did a 2nd dose of the antibiotic. that was yesterday...
tonight i am going to do another 25% water change and search for any hidden lingering patches of the "blue-green death", but it has not come back yet and the tank is looking great... i am adding more plants to a few bare spots soon and will be gradually increasing the light and co2 levels. i still want to remain low-medium with my light/co2....like i said before i am really after stability....
i tested the nitrates and actually had between 15 to 20ppm i did test it soon after a feeding though, but i wont be adding "green light stump remover" too soon, but i am dosing once a week Flourish Comprehensive plant supplement, should i be starting the potassium, and other ferts soon, i dont have a phosphate test kit and my kh [RedSea] i think is bad, because it doesnt ever reach the start color i have put 20 drops in and it just turn the water slightly yellow...it is suppose to be pink to blue[or vice-versa]and i saw a link on this board once, but cant seem to find it, what is the link to the proper mixing procedures for preparing the "green=light stump remover", "NU-salt", and "Fleets Enema" ferts. thanx again everyone
 
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