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  Topic Review (Newest First)
04-21-2015 08:46 PM
Hilde [quote=Jimmyblues;7756137]
Originally Posted by mr hyde View Post
My tank's been infested with bba for the last 6 months. I've been reading the advice on the board off and

From what I have read, BBA develops in aquariums that have constant PH swings due to erratic CO2 levels.

*Hint: for removing those last tiny pieces of substrate from the bottom of an aquarium use some silly putty.
Constant PH swings is not the only cause of BBA. When I started my tank BBA killed all of my plants. Dosing KNO3 and adding a 3hr siesta period got BBA under control. Algae means there is an imbalance. If your minerals, especially nitrates, are high do water changes every other day.

Originally Posted by hitmanx View Post
Considering the zombie nature of this thread, I thought I'd add to it instead of make a new one...

I am following the Tom Barr non co2 method so top off only, which is currently RO water...
What are you water parameters before and after topping off? I think doing water changes weekly with treated tap water may be more beneficial.
04-21-2015 07:54 PM
BBA Infestation

[QUOTE=mr hyde;125628]My tank's been infested with bba for the last 6 months. I've been reading the advice on the board off and

You don't mention if you turn your injected CO2 off at night. From what I have read, BBA
develops in aquariums that have constant PH swings due to erratic CO2 levels.

This is especially true with DIY CO2 systems.

I have been using DIY CO2 with great success in growing plants, however, BBA has also grown all over my substrate due to the fluctuations in CO2 levels.

Of all of the algae I have dealt with BBA is the most difficult to eradicate, because it grows in tufts all over your tank and quickly takes over your substrate. It's not quite as bad as
a cyanobacteria outbreak, where you can literally see the cyano growing and creeping across the bottom of your aquarium right before your very eyes.

However, its bad enough. I got so fed up with trying to battle it that I removed the substrate in two of my tanks that had this problem, and now have substrate free tanks.

They take a bit of getting used to. However, the rimless aquariums in particular look very nice without substrate.

And it is much easier to keep the bottom of the tank clean since you only need to vacuum it once a week.

I keep the plants in these tanks in terracotta pots, and remove them once a week to soak their roots in a few inches of tap water infused with a capful of liquid fertilizer.

So not having substrate in these tanks isn't a problem for me.

I would suggest removing the substrate from your aquarium (after finding another place for your fish to stay for about 24 hours. Then I would break down your tank and scrub your
filter, tank, heater and anything else you have had in this aquarium to get rid of the black brush.

I would also suggest investing in a UV sterilizer since they do an excellent job of reducing the number of algae spores in the water column so that algae won't take over your aquarium.

*Hint: for removing those last tiny pieces of substrate from the bottom of an aquarium that you have chosen to keep substrate free, use some silly putty. You can create a flat piece of this clay and then press it onto the particles which then stick to the putty for easy removal. This is the best way to remove those lingering particles that you can't get with a
siphon or fish net.
10-10-2014 03:41 PM
hitmanx Considering the zombie nature of this thread, I thought I'd add to it instead of make a new one...

Over the last 7 months of my heavily planted tank, the only time small amount of BBA have showed is when I have let the open top water evaporate to much , and therefore had to add alot of water for top off... I am following the Tom Barr non co2 method so top off only, which is currently RO water...

So from my experience thus far, it seems to be a fluctuating co2 problem... every time I add more water the stable co2 levels fluctuate, and if I add to much at one time the balance is tipped...

Until I added a powerhead my main algae was staghorn and oedogonium fuzz on leaf edges, but the increased floe and more amano shrimp cleared that up

Of course I had a recent large BBA attack on my driftwood which coincided with replacing my cfl bulb after 6 months... As of yesterday half of it is gone, all munched away by my single red ramshorn snail... at least I witnessed him eating it and the next day it was gone... Either that or my 12 amano shrimp decided it tasted good...

BBA is a helluva thing...
12-26-2013 05:42 AM
Planted-tnk-guy I run my c02 as high as i can without killing my most sensitive fish. Many pelco and fish from fast running water will be affected at high co2 first since they need higher oxygen levels when i see a ribber lip pelco on his back panting for air i turnmy bubbler on for 1 min and turn my c02 back just a notch and wait an hour. My drop checker is always bright yellow since you cannot measure c02 at home realistically. Once my c02 is good i turn it off one hour after lights out and three hours before lights on so the level is at a constant during daylight hours. All my animals crayfish, shrimp badis, snails and plants are happy and free of bba. I only do this when i am going to be home all day so i have a good 12 hrs to tinker with the c02 to get it right. You dont need to worry to much it takes a long time for a fish to die from C02 so as long as you watch and be prepared to pump air in if needed your fish will be ok. And if you have expensive plants such as anubis, moss, java, i do a zip lock bag terrarium no water only enough humidity to keep the plant alive and slowly reduce the humidity over the next few weeks so the plant can dry out between waterings . I open the bag daily to let in more cO2 and wash as much bba off as you can and even a dilute amount of hydrogen peroxide on a qtip works in the back 10 min then rinse off works best on hard leaves.
12-22-2013 06:35 PM
EricSilver I won the battle with BBA after I accidentally killed my fish with a too-strong H2O2 treatment. In my case, there was a direct correlation between fish waste and BBA.

My 40G breeder was heavily planted, with adequate filtration, pressurized CO2 and two UV sterilizers. Water was always crystal clear. During and after cycling I dealt with diatoms; some green algae on rocks and the edges of some plants; and minor green dust on the glass due to direct sunlight exposure. Adding 15 amano shrimp helped control that. Later I added fish: A dwarf puffer to control the snail population; 6 rummy nose tetras; 5 cardinals; and 5 gold tetras. About three months later, BBA and blue-green algae appeared, and the green dust became heavier.

I used peroxide and Flourish Excel to combat it, but it always returned within a week. About 7 weeks ago I increased the peroxide dosage, which unfortunately killed all the fish except the puffer; and killed 10 of the 15 shrimp. The plants fared no better: All melted except the Hydrocotyle 'Japan” (which is tough as nails); about 30% of the glossostigma survived; the hygrophilia corymbosa was unaffected; and Staurogyne Repens seemed to actually grow stronger.

I let the tank sit untouched for a month to recover. During that time, the green dust/green water returned -- but the BBA did not. Not a single hair returned.

I did a 50% water change, vacuuming mulm and detritus from below the substrate. In the next week, green dust appeared again but at about half its previous growth level. Another water change a week after that, again vacuuming sediment from under the substrate, and subsequent green dust was at about 10% of its previous level. Repeated the water change/vacuuming yesterday and fully expect the reduction to continue.

The attached pic was taken a short time before the BBA outbreaks (starting on the leaves of the hygrophilia corymbosa). I will post some “after” pics after I finish minor re-scaping and pruning damaged/dead plants.

Note: Since the peroxide catastrophe two months ago I have added nothing to the tank except Flourish. The shrimp are living on algae and I assume the puffer is finding survivor snails since he is fat and happy. With no additional fish producing waste (and me not adding fish food), I am hoping I can maintain this balanced state indefinitely.

So, even with good filtration, two UV sterilizers, over-abundant plants and a (seemingly) moderate fish load, the algae won. To defeat algae, the secret appears to be to significantly reduce the animal bio-load.
12-21-2013 04:56 PM
Originally Posted by Sethjohnson30 View Post
Every time I dose flourish iron(or comprehensive) I end up with bba butif I dose csm+b I do not get bba.
Perhaps it is because it is Ferrous Gluconate. Ferrous sulfate seem to help my plants better.
12-21-2013 04:36 PM
Originally Posted by FISA View Post
I too had a tough time with BBA.....some say it infests tanks with high carbonate hardness.....
I have low carbonate hardness. Still struggling with it. When I started the tank, 29G, 4years ago tap water was soft with ph 8.6. Read that this meant the tap water was treated with phosphates. Dosed more with KNO3 and had a 3hr siesta period.

Now tap water ph is soft with ph 7.6. BBA is attaching my ferns. Still struggling with it. Next step is to take ferns out and dip them in diluted seachem excel.

I have always been told low Co2 is the culprit. Mr Hyde has good Co2 which proves my theory that is an imbalance of some sort.
02-01-2013 05:27 AM
TetraFan I had a problem with BBA only once. I traded my CAE in for two SAE and I have never had it since...
02-01-2013 01:46 AM
Originally Posted by plantedtankfan View Post
Will sdding some SAE help with the bbs problem?
help yes. Solve, maybe. Spot dose excel and Stable CO2
02-01-2013 01:20 AM
plantedtankfan Will sdding some SAE help with the bbs problem?
01-26-2013 12:52 PM
crossbred900 My 75 gallon oscar tank was infested with bba a few months ago when I decided to try a couple plants in his tank. Now the plants are gone and I can't get rid of the algae. I read that overdosing Flourish Excel can get rid of it, but how much can I dose without hurting my large oscar? The initial dose I used last night was for 90 gallons. Now it says add 1 cap a day. How much more than that should I use?
12-13-2012 12:24 PM
etgregoire I did have high flow in my tank so I took out my power had circulating water. It seems to be growing less rapidly now but I also have a better co2 reg that gives more consistent output. So I'm not sure which that was. I might try adding it back
12-13-2012 12:03 PM
OVT I wish I could find Cause -> Effect in this thread (or any other). The search continues....
12-12-2012 09:47 PM
Sethjohnson30 I think this thread should be a sticky.can we do that mods?
12-12-2012 09:35 PM
Sethjohnson30 How's your flow? If you don't have even distribution of nutrients and co2 some times algae will grow heavier in slower moving water because the nutrients and co2 are not able to get to that area
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