What to do about this algae? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 02-15-2004, 01:52 AM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
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Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Minneapolis, MN USA
Posts: 111
Sometime around mid January I started to get this brown algae. The tank seems to do fine. I have to trim my plants every week, they pearl and new growth is there.

This stuff coats the plants. Not fully but on the edges mostly. I can shake the plants and it floats off and gets in the water column. As you can see in the picture.

I do weekly water changes, keep my N at about 10, P at 0.1-0.2 and K around 10-20. I also dose Kent's Botanica Grow and Micro twice weekly at half the weekly dose on the bottle.

The tank is a 20 gallon long, 55 watts CF, ph around 6.6.

I've read adding more light would help brown algae. I don't have any more light fixtures to toss on top.

I have 4 otos in the tank, an ancistrus and Pseudotothyris janeirensis (think he eats algae - not sure yet - picked up as a miss labeled oto.)

I don't know what else to do. Any suggestions?
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 02-15-2004, 06:42 PM
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Hey mm,
The GE light you sold me is great!

Concerning the algae though, a red flag that came up was your nutrient proportions. Time and time again I have read that this is the largest culprit, or most effective way to managing algae. The golden ratio between P:N is 1:10. right now you've got 1:100. Your K is in good order so that shouldn't be a factor.

I would try to lower the N levels some, to about 5 and raise the P to about 0.5.

Easier would be to add P until you get 1ppm and keep the N levels where they are. This move can be risky though b/c if there is too much P for your plants to process, than your tank will be algae heaven; however I've read about about Tom Barr keeping P levels at about 2! with phenomenal results. This is providing you have good CO2 and light levels so its your judgment.
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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 02-15-2004, 06:57 PM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
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Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Minneapolis, MN USA
Posts: 111
Glad the light worked out great. I had a few too many. So worked out well for both of us.

I cannot believe this. I have been aiming for 0.1 ppm P. Good lord my math sucks. I was thinking 1/10 of 10 was 0.1! Crap. You rock. Time to test things now and dose a little more. God I have been doing this for a few months! :cry:

You know at work I just sent out 100k or so Grade 3 Minnesota Math test books. Maybe I should go grab one and see how I score! I'd probably fail!!
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 02-16-2004, 12:37 AM
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Location: Portland Orygun
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I seem to get that fluffy brown crap in about half the tanks I set up. It seems to go away in about a month or so. I have found nothing that eats it and nothing I do can make it go away.
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