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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
i recently moved to ontario from bc(canada), and have encountered more green slime algae here then ever anywhere on the coast. In just over a year ive had 3 outbreaks in the same tank and recently 2 in my 70 gallon tank. At 20 bux a box that gets expensive fast, and the most recent outbreak took 6 days to kill and only then because i sprayed the @#$! out of everything i could see with hydrogen peroxide, then spot treated the remaining areas with erythromycin for the final 2 doses. This was 3 weeks ago and today ive noticed that it might be coming back, but i,m not sure as all green algae now appears to be rudimentary cyanobacteria to me(post traumatic stress?). Ive encountered it before out west but way less frequently and only ever once per tank. Erthromycin killed it and it never returned or so i assumed. Unless its just the water here(soft water on coast, hard water here) i,m willing to bet its immune to erythromycin. It makes sense that under the maitenance i do thta it should have been gone after the first outbreak. Not come back 3 times in a year in the same tank that is well looked after(weekly sometimes more frequent water changes,well filtered, heavily planted tanks with good flow).The only thing i,m lacking is co2 system(i use diy method) but this stuff isnt a true algae so the occasional imbalances bettween refilling the bottles shouldnt be the cause. I dont know what to do,,,,worried this could be end of planted tanks in my life at this rate. I cant afford to medicate my tanks to this extent especially when it only seems to be a temporary bandaid. I,ve noticed that its in every fish store in town as well. Dont know what to do...,,please help
 

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Your only addressing the problem, not the cause! If I keep hitting you with a hammer on the head, do you keep taking painkillers? And when they don't work anymore, perhaps some stronger stuff like morphine? No, you make me stop hitting you. So with the cyano, you can keep using antibiotics till every bacteria in your tank is antibiotic resistant, than you can switch to other antibiotics, but it will come back if you don't solve the cause.

Cyano is in every tank, I don't know whether it is airborne or just comes in with the tap water, either way, you can't eliminate it totally. It is in every tank I ever owned, usually between the glas and substrate where litlle flow comes but lots of light and waste is. It's almost never a problem in the rest of the tank and only once in my life did I used antibiotics because I couldn't get rid of it in a natural way.

Whenever you need to use antibiotics, don't stop when the cyano is visually gone!!!! Keep going to make sure all cyano is gone even the invisible traces. In the Netherlands I can't get antibiotics without a subscription anymore (I think a good thing but that aside) because people don't use it right and antibiotic-resistance is a growing problem.

So my advice would be:
1. Clean your tank! Vacuum the substrate, clean your filter regularly (but never too clean, you need good bacteria to compete with the cyano), change a large part of water every week (or day) depending on the amount of fish you own.
2. Make sure oxygen levels are 100% all time! When it is a planted tank, make sure your plants grow well so they supply ample oxygen. Be sure the plants get all the ferts they need.
Use quite some fast growing plants if you've lots of fish. At night, use aeration. When it is a fish only tank, use heavy aeration 24/7.
3. High nitrate... This is a tricky one, if your nitrates are high due to lots of waste, change water, till it is low again. In a planted tank, plants need nitrate as a nitrogen source. Cyano can use other sources as a nitrogen source so with low nitrate cyano has an advantage. Make sure it is high enough but not as a result of feeding.

Keep doing this of at least 2 months. When this doesn't work, you can use other means but make sure you keep doing this or the cyano will come back!

Sorry if this sounds harsh, but as a pharmacist I hate antibiotic-resistance:p
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks,,,i will definatly try the chemiclean if it comes back as ive been doing everything jo han suggested i do(throughout the past year) and it still happened 3 times,,in the places its coming back its moving slower then usual at least, but what is there isnt even really responding to hydrogen peroxide anymore. Outerfilm bubbles away but underneath stays and grows a bit greener evryday. Reason i believed it to be possible it was immune to antibiotics is because its so much stronger here then it was 3000 miles away from here, and its in every fish store in town all over their plant tanks and they all act like its just an algae. have only found one that uses etrythomicin to treat it and he said he has to redo it every couple months in the same tanks. Makes sense at the fish store due to lack of maitenance but not in one as well maitained in a home(like mine).In 15 years of moving around and keeping fish ive just never seen it so much.
 

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:-s I'ld rather they have BGA in their store tanks, then hear a LFS uses etrythomicin.

FWIW, if you have surface film, adding a surface skimmer will help improve the O2 level. You may not need to say more about your tank but if the BGA comes back, the past years tank maintenance would be in question and a more detailed description of your tank might shed light on a very common problem.
 

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Anyone using an antibiotic should use the complete dose and follow the directions.

I wish people would stop using antibiotics but not while in the middle of any treatment. Typically oxidizers like chemiclean and H2O2 (about 1ml per gallon) can successfully disrupt BGA but it's hard to provide suggestions while overlooking the conditions of the tank, unless people explain what those conditions are. ;)

With the information you did provide, I can only guess too much light and water flowing into the area of BGA needs to be improved.
Most importantly, the oxygen levels overall should be considered deficient.
 

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anyone using an antibiotic should use the complete dose and follow the directions.

I wish people would stop using antibiotics but not while in the middle of any treatment. Typically oxidizers like chemiclean and h2o2 (about 1ml per gallon) can successfully disrupt bga but it's hard to provide suggestions while overlooking the conditions of the tank, unless people explain what those conditions are. ;)

with the information you did provide, i can only guess too much light and water flowing into the area of bga needs to be improved.
Most importantly, the oxygen levels overall should be considered deficient.
+1!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
been following your suggestions and have been making serious headway against the slime although its still present in a few areas. A couple of them are pretty high flow places, and i,m wondering if its because hiugh oxygen levels are more important then lots of flow. Ive got it two tanks and have increased the flow and maitenance elaboratly, but still seem to be losing somehow. Its way slower then ever before at least but i still lose sections of plants to it from time to time(mostly when debris clogs the wavemakers.I cant increase the flow anymore without completly switching plants(already cut them short to survive the new flow levels). Trying to avoid the chemiclean and just treat it with flow and high oxygen levels and a clean tank with 2-3 10-25% water changes a week. Any other suggestions?
 

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Your right about the importance of oxygen over flow. One is just a means to an end - not beyond. The size aquarium we keep compared to large estuaries we recreate, is all about the art of landscaping but flow is a part of that.

Would you know your light's PAR at the furthest point from the light in your tank?
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
i made several new trenches bettween the plant groups to get the flow going through as deeply as possible,,that seemed to help the most,, at first. Ive also realized i likely have too much light(2 56 watt t-5 sunblaster full spectrum bulbs, and 80 watts of t-8 philips for planted aquariums bulbs from the hardware store). Ive decided to have them on 2 different timersOn for total of 11 hours a day,, but only 4 hours a day at the same time as each other. The tank is 18 inches deep and lights are right on top of tank. Substarte is flourite planted tank substrate(brown hard stuff good for plants though)mixed with gravel and sand. Flourish liquid nutrients every 6 days(root tabs as needed), and 4 diy co2 units ,2 refilled every 6 days to a week.I also dose excel almost double the amount to "keep away" algae, and due to amount of plants, Id post photo but cant find how. Gonna get another air stone if newest positioning of wave makers flow and surface disruption doesnt fight it back under the sand
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 · (Edited)
well was i ever wrong...again,,,its back in both my tanks again. Even the one i just tore down , bought a new wavemaker for and put all the moss inside of on a 7 day blackout ( its back on some of the moss as well after being cleaned and under 8 hours of light a day since being removed). at the rate it seems to be moving suddenly it will devour my glossostigma in a day or two. You gotta see the flow its under,,youd be surprised!!!)Ive cut all my plants so short to accomodate the flow,,have every inch of my surface agitated by it, so its unlikely not enough oxygen.Water bill is threw the roof from increased water changes.Its even different colours now. Feel so trapped in this confusion and all these dead end attempts to end it....i can see a need for support groups for this in southwestern ontario eventually. Its gotta be something in the water here....other then reduce the light and a couple extra water changes(due to loach stirring up dust from under babytears too thick to vacumn through),,,,nothing different was done this past few days. Guess ill move my flow around again,,,,going seriously crazy at times. You might as well be hitting me on the head with a hammer johan...this has been more draining on my heart then that would be on my head thats for sure
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Gonna tryto switch my ferts and reduce my light. Going chemical route as well....natural route waste of time and water. Sad but true...just one more problem societies got a pill for i guess. Chemi clean and erythromycin valley it is,,,bet you it still wont work though and will be back in a fewdays. When this happens i,m Considering pulling all the fish from my tanks and putting pottasium permanganate followed by a full day(say 3 treatments) of hydrogen peroxide poured straight into the tank at extremly toxic levels. I,m pretty sure or hoping that that will be imediatly followed by a puff of smoke and my tank exploding.Hopefully when all that dust settles it will at last be dead enough that high flow and oxygen levels will keep it bay. I,m telling ya though,,,,this stuff is straight out of the secret of the ooze
 
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