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Old 07-02-2013, 06:30 PM   #1
Falconeyes88
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Need Help! Algae is Killing my plants :(


I am not sure what type of Algae this is or how to get rid of it.

I am new to planted tanks and have a 10 gallon, all the specs can be found here: http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/yo...n=Falconeyes88

It is ruining my tank and Plants.

Please help!
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Old 07-02-2013, 07:30 PM   #2
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No, algae is not killing your plants. Your plants aren't growing, that is the problem. When I started a planted tank way back when I had loads of algae but the plants grew fast enough that I didn't mind much. Some of your plants look fine, they seem to like your tank - if they have been in the tank for a while. Some look horrible, guessing they aren't happy with the situation. Replacing plants that are actually dying with more of the happy plants plus some fast growing stems and/or floaters might help your tank.

Has the hairgrass done anything at all? I'd check for healthy runners and cut back the top growth of what you have if you can without uprooting it if there are runners. Right now it is a handy substrate for that algae which is probably enjoying the nutrients leaking from the dead leaves.

How about reading through this synopsis of Tom Barr's low tech system to see if you can figure out what the problem is? http://www.sudeepmandal.com/hobbies/...ed-tank-guide/

I don't know anything about your lighting but it should be on a timer for about 8 hours a day. Perhaps lighting is too strong, put a layer of window screen down between tank and light or raise the fixture and see if your plants grow better or use only one fixture. According to this link the Marineland LED would add about 25 PAR to the other light, that is quite a bit for a non CO2 tank. http://www.jlaquatics.com/product/ld...7+Inch%29.html and the Fluval, this shows PAR for salt water fixture but the fresh water is likely not much lower in PAR http://www.reefs.com/blog/2012/07/12...sea-led-light/

The goo covering the hairgrass might be cyanobacteria which can show up when there is very little nitrate available. If the green is hard to scrub off it might be green spot algae which can show up when phosphate is low and plants will always need more potassium and micronutrients than fish poo/pee or root tabs provide.

I know algae eaters aren't the solution but they help keep plants cleaned up just because they go over all the tank surfaces constantly. What do you have in this tank? I have platies, ramshorn snails, otos and a couple bristlenose plecos.
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Old 07-02-2013, 08:16 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Kathyy View Post
No, algae is not killing your plants. Your plants aren't growing, that is the problem. When I started a planted tank way back when I had loads of algae but the plants grew fast enough that I didn't mind much. Some of your plants look fine, they seem to like your tank - if they have been in the tank for a while. Some look horrible, guessing they aren't happy with the situation. Replacing plants that are actually dying with more of the happy plants plus some fast growing stems and/or floaters might help your tank.

Has the hairgrass done anything at all? I'd check for healthy runners and cut back the top growth of what you have if you can without uprooting it if there are runners. Right now it is a handy substrate for that algae which is probably enjoying the nutrients leaking from the dead leaves.

How about reading through this synopsis of Tom Barr's low tech system to see if you can figure out what the problem is? http://www.sudeepmandal.com/hobbies/...ed-tank-guide/

I don't know anything about your lighting but it should be on a timer for about 8 hours a day. Perhaps lighting is too strong, put a layer of window screen down between tank and light or raise the fixture and see if your plants grow better or use only one fixture. According to this link the Marineland LED would add about 25 PAR to the other light, that is quite a bit for a non CO2 tank. http://www.jlaquatics.com/product/ld...7+Inch%29.html and the Fluval, this shows PAR for salt water fixture but the fresh water is likely not much lower in PAR http://www.reefs.com/blog/2012/07/12...sea-led-light/

The goo covering the hairgrass might be cyanobacteria which can show up when there is very little nitrate available. If the green is hard to scrub off it might be green spot algae which can show up when phosphate is low and plants will always need more potassium and micronutrients than fish poo/pee or root tabs provide.

I know algae eaters aren't the solution but they help keep plants cleaned up just because they go over all the tank surfaces constantly. What do you have in this tank? I have platies, ramshorn snails, otos and a couple bristlenose plecos.
Thanks for the reply. I went out and bought three 1.5 inch Bristlenose Plecos today on my lunch (this tank is on my desk at work and its kind of embarassing...) and have had the light reduced to 7 hours a day for about a week now. I will try turning off the small LED strip and see if that helps. I currently dose with API's CO2 Booster and API's Leafzone. the nice green plant on the left I just added in an attempt to eat up more nutrients. I have been using Algaefix for a week as well.

Not really sure what a runner is? I am guessing they are little grass blades that have spread from the clumps? if so, yes there are a few of those. and cutting back the "top growth" means cutting the grass lower? sorry for my ignorance. Also the algae on the plants rubs right off with my finger and my scrub pad removes the algae on the glass very easliy.

In my tank I now have 6 Neon tetras, 5 Serpae tetras, and 3 baby Bristlenose Plecos. should I get another algae eater? I saw Chinese Algae eaters, would they work?

Thanks!
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Old 07-02-2013, 11:17 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Falconeyes88 View Post
In my tank I now have 6 Neon tetras, 5 Serpae tetras, and 3 baby Bristlenose Plecos. should I get another algae eater? I saw Chinese Algae eaters, would they work?
No, SAE's not only get agressive towards fish as they get older, but they stop eating algae and will get much too large for your tank. As it is your tank is way overstocked... the serpaes really need to be in a larger tank, as do the BN plecos (you could keep one in a 20g, I currently have two in my 55g, and I wouldn't add another). Otos would be a much better solution in your tank if you really want a 'clean up crew' to munch on the algae. My experience is that the otos do a better job than the BN plecos do - I actually have to feed my plecos because the otos are more actively eating the algae in my tank and they don't leave enough.

Having battled a variety of algae issues myself, I can say that your problem is too much nutrients in the water for your current plant growth (as your plants start to grow better, they will leave less in the water for algae to thrive on - if you are dosing ferts right now, I'd stop for now, at least until your plants have settled in), too much light (either too bright or on too long), and too much bio-load in an immature tank.
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Old 07-02-2013, 11:41 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Falconeyes88 View Post
Thanks for the reply. I went out and bought three 1.5 inch Bristlenose Plecos today on my lunch (this tank is on my desk at work and its kind of embarassing...) and have had the light reduced to 7 hours a day for about a week now. I will try turning off the small LED strip and see if that helps. I currently dose with API's CO2 Booster and API's Leafzone. the nice green plant on the left I just added in an attempt to eat up more nutrients. I have been using Algaefix for a week as well.

Not really sure what a runner is? I am guessing they are little grass blades that have spread from the clumps? if so, yes there are a few of those. and cutting back the "top growth" means cutting the grass lower? sorry for my ignorance. Also the algae on the plants rubs right off with my finger and my scrub pad removes the algae on the glass very easliy.

In my tank I now have 6 Neon tetras, 5 Serpae tetras, and 3 baby Bristlenose Plecos. should I get another algae eater? I saw Chinese Algae eaters, would they work?

Thanks!
Quote:
Originally Posted by sarahspins View Post
No, SAE's not only get agressive towards fish as they get older, but they stop eating algae and will get much too large for your tank. As it is your tank is way overstocked... the serpaes really need to be in a larger tank, as do the BN plecos (you could keep one in a 20g, I currently have two in my 55g, and I wouldn't add another). Otos would be a much better solution in your tank if you really want a 'clean up crew' to munch on the algae. My experience is that the otos do a better job than the BN plecos do - I actually have to feed my plecos because the otos are more actively eating the algae in my tank and they don't leave enough.

Having battled a variety of algae issues myself, I can say that your problem is too much nutrients in the water for your current plant growth (as your plants start to grow better, they will leave less in the water for algae to thrive on - if you are dosing ferts right now, I'd stop for now, at least until your plants have settled in), too much light (either too bright or on too long), and too much bio-load in an immature tank.
The OP mentioned Chinese Algae Eaters, but the advice is the same. However, Siamese Algae Eaters (SAE) are not aggressive and usually handle algae just fine, but don't get them if your tank is full already. SAEs are one of the few fish who eat hair algae and BBA. To make it even more confusing, SAEs are often times confused with all kinds of other fish (False Siamese and Flying Fox).
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Old 07-03-2013, 12:13 AM   #6
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Gotcha, sorry for the confusion
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Old 07-03-2013, 01:18 AM   #7
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I remember when I wanted a SAE I googled it and got the perfect picture comparing the true SAE with the fakes. Its really easy to tell. When you go to the store to purchase, examine the fish and you will know what it really is. Over all though, otos waay better. They stay small and not much seems to bug them. They are tuff.
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Old 07-05-2013, 02:03 PM   #8
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Thank you for the advise! I was thinking of waiting until the BN plecos get big and returning them for slammer ones once the Algae probvlem is fixed. but maybe I will take them back for ottos? how many do you reccommend?
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Old 07-05-2013, 02:12 PM   #9
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Do you test your water parameters? If not, that would be a good place to start.

I highly advise against trying to buy livestock to eat the algae until you know why the algae is taking such a firm hold in the first place.

You say you're using LeafZone, but if I remember correctly, that doesn't have the full battery of ferts that one would need. A shortage of fertilization in any of the required macros (NPK) or a shortage of microferts (including phosphate), can lead to algae.
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Old 07-05-2013, 03:34 PM   #10
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by the that does not look like cyno bacteria, it look more like GDA (dust Algae).

maybe this will help you understand it:

http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/sh...d.php?t=374505


please provide us with all the water parameter as possible.

Bushy nose will eat the GDA off the glass while ignoring most of the GDA on plants, wood, rocks etc. they will help to reduce it but doesn't cure it.
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Old 07-05-2013, 03:41 PM   #11
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Really? Well if it is then algae grazers will be very happy, that stuff is delicious! You should be seeing lots of bristlenose trails on the glass and big spots on the plants where they have been gorging. Get snails in the tank. Again, they won't be able to completely eat it all but they will make a dent.
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Old 08-19-2013, 01:57 PM   #12
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As you can see the BN plecos have really cleared all of the GDA, but now I have a ne issue. I am unsure of which parameters to test, I only have my light on for 6 hours and have stopped the leafzone. I am using API CO2 booster and have gotten some SEACHEM fertalizer tabs. I just cannot win... any advice would be appreciated...
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Old 08-19-2013, 08:10 PM   #13
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that look like Cyno bacteria, you will need to use antibiotic to kill it.

on ebay search for UltraLife Blue Green Cyano Algae Remover Freshwater
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Old 11-11-2013, 05:19 AM   #14
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scrape some out and give it a sniff.

cyano stinks.

As mentioned you can treat with chems or do a 3 day blackout, big water change/scrape/vac/cleaning then another 3 day blackout.

Plants will take a hit but should come back.
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Old 11-11-2013, 12:37 PM   #15
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dont do blackout on weakened plants.
use erythromycin. its an antibiotic. goggle
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