Aquatic Plant Forum banner

1 - 14 of 14 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
69 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have 100 gallon tank with 6 discus. The tank has been set up for almost 2 years. The sub is mineralized soil caped with sand. The tank is set up as low tech so not CO2. The light was 4 t8 6500K and one planted tank bulbs. Filter is xp4 and sponge filter. The tank was doing great for a year. I started to get some algae out break about 6 months ago but was under control then it started to get worse. Water change was every other day since i kept discus and the water parameter showed no problem. I thought the plant needed better lighting since the plant growth was minimal vs the algae so i purchased 2 fennex planted+ 24/7. The new light was set on the 24/7 mode. The algae problem started to get worse after 2 month under the new light so turned one off. Now its out of control, i'm scraping off algae from plants, background and every glass. The more i scrap the worse it gets. I had to take out most of my stem plants to fight back the algae. I'm so frustrated now that i was going to start fresh but need to sell the discus first. i posted the fish for sale at DFWFISHBOX and as of today no interest. I don't want to sell the discus but i don't know if there is anything i can do without breaking the tank down and start new.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
69 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 ·
I have hair algae, brown algae and blue-green algae. I also see some that look red to maroon. I've been keeping aquariums for 20 years and have never came across algae problem like this, any suggestion is appreciate.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
5,737 Posts
Two Finnex Planted Plus fixtures is a lot of light for a low-tech non-CO2 tank. Try turning one of them off for a few weeks.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
69 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I suspected the light so i had only one running for past 3-4 weeks if not longer. Originally i was going to get 2 finnex stingray but thought that wouldn't be enough light for plants so paid extra and got the planted plus as they were rated for low to med light. I've been thinking of getting co2 set up for the tank but i don't have time for ferts and extra maintenance.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
583 Posts
Algae issues are so bizarre. There are a number of steps I have used over the years when I have had these types of algae issues. All of them have worked to some degree.

1. 3 Day tank blackout - I've used this one once on a 40 gallon CO2 tank that developed BBA and Green Slime algae everywhere. Basically, I wrapped the 4 sides of the tank with trash bags, removed all the lights and covered the tank with cardboard. I left the filters running and fed the fish as usual. I don't totally block the top and put in an air stone and air pump. Performed a 50% water change prior to the blackout and after 3 days, uncovered the tank, removed all infected plants and performed another 50% water change. I also turned off my Co2 during this period and dosed every day with Excel at 4 times strength. Also, strip and clean your Rena XP4 external filter before and after this treatment. Be careful not to kill the beneficial bacteria the filter provides.

2. If I had BBA, I always use Excel and a syringe to spray Excel on the affected areas of the plant. Even if I am using other methods to get rid of other types of algae. If I can, I will remove the plant and dip it in Excel for about 1 minute every day for a week. This has had good results for me.

3. I have treated Cyanobacterial algae infestations with a good antibiotic.

4. I used to run my lights about 10-12 hours a day but have cut that down to 8.5 hours and all 7 tanks are on a timer.

5. I do test for Nitrates, Nitrites, Phosphorus and Ammonia when I have a breakout but in the last 3 or 4 years I've been lucky. Partially because I keep my tanks overgrown and plants will out compete algae for excess nutrients. I also don't have overstock the tank with fish.

Check with mooncon about how he treated his Discus tank when it got overgrown with algae. We were at his home for a meeting earlier this year and he had just overcome a severe algae breakout in his 100 gallon tank. His tanks looked great.

Hope this helps.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
44 Posts
Other than green spot algae on older leaves, I have never had a problem with algae. Have I just been lucky or is just waiting for an opportunity to strike? I think I have a good balance of light and nutrients and I tweak when I see more algae. One thing I have wondered about is nutrients in the substrate. In the olden days with under gravel filters and no plants, I vacuumed the gravel thoroughly. I have read mixed reports on whether you should do so in planted tanks.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,704 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
69 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
every thing leads back to low CO2. I've been thing about getting a co2 set up so this might be a good time. Any suggestion on co2 regulator and other equipment needed.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
116 Posts
When I started up my tank brand new after only running a small emersed setup I purposefully cranked my co2 up and left the lights on high for 12 hours. I knew this would cause algae problems, so I kept a close eye on it. My plants were all emersed and I was trying to keep them from melting. After a few days I started to see hair algae, then a couple of days later I saw cyanobacteria. I watched them really close and when the hair algae started to significantly grow I turned down the lights to 8-8.5hours a day. Honestly, any longer than this and the plants started to show signs of stress. When the cyano started to grow too much I vacuumed it all up with a major water change and continued to vacuum any else that grew. After a few water changes I added some more sand to bury any cyano I had missed. Both hair algae and cyanobacteria were in the tank from then on but only barely. By the time I started the water changes the plants had taken over and were out competing for nutrients.

A year or so later I rescaled the tank and hair/staghorn algae started to take over some of my fissidens. I noticed that this section of moss was located closest to my filter output and it was collecting a lot of detritus. So I cut back as much of the algae as I could in a water change and vacuum ed the moss. I repeated this once and the algae was gone. There was a smaller amount of the same algae throughout the tank and I also vacuumed the entire tank with the moss and the algae died off every where else too.

Finally, after yet another rescape, I turned off my co2 to make some new fish more comfortable. After about a month I started to see bba. I hesitated todoanythi g thinking it was due to a lack of plants ( I was waiting for them to fill in). After a couple of weeks, the bba had covered entire leaves of my crypts and moss across the entire tank. I then turned my co2 back on and more than half the bba died over night.

This tank has always been a soil substrate with gravel/sand cap, no added ferts, ~1 bps co2, and very few water changes.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
54 Posts
Since I switched from CFL's to LED's about three months ago, I've been having algae issues. It's the lighting in my opinion. LED's push more photons than other lights. I was surprised to find that I could put the light about 2 feet off of the surface of my 55g, on for 6 hrs/day, and still keep high/med light plants happy. But the tank looked darker, and the light spills out around the tank and doesn't look as good as light directly over the tank. So I lowered the lights and added window screening to break up the light. Still having algae issues, so I may need to cut the light even more by running them only 5 hours a day, or adding more screen. I'm still learning this LED lighting. I'm using 5 LED flood lights from Lowes @60watts ea. so I can cover the whole 55g. When they were raised about 2 feet off surface, I only used two of them, along with 2 red/blue spot lights at the same height for color variation. LED's are quite the learning curve for me. :rolleyes:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
116 Posts
Ninja, when I switched to leds, I had no problem with algae. My par on the substrate went from something like 20 with t5's to around 70 with the leds. No fertilization was added in either case. All nutrients came from fauna and the soil substrate, so ferts remained constant.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
54 Posts
Ninja, when I switched to leds, I had no problem with algae. My par on the substrate went from something like 20 with t5's to around 70 with the leds. No fertilization was added in either case. All nutrients came from fauna and the soil substrate, so ferts remained constant.
It could be about the ferts in my case as well. I am tweaking a dry fert schedule at the same time I'm working the LED's. I have broken down the tank and cleaned the plants in a bucket with H2O2, including substrate, replaced and am not fertilizing anything but Iron and Potassium at this point. I won't add anything else for the next few weeks and I'll see if that helps. I was very happy with CFL's and had stable tanks, but I just could not leave 'well enough' alone!
 
1 - 14 of 14 Posts
Top