BBA and dying hornwort/frogbit - The Planted Tank Forum
 1Likes
  • 1 Post By AbbeysDad
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 05-03-2020, 05:03 AM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: May 2020
Posts: 5
BBA and dying hornwort/frogbit

My 5-year-old low-tech planted tank has been great for several years, but two problems have come up in the last 9 months or so: black beard algae, and I suddenly can't keep floating plants alive.

My conditions: ~65 gallons, Fluval 406 cannister filter, Current USA Satellite Plus Pro LED lights at about 40% brightness (with a bit of emphasis on red and less on green) run for 8 hours per day, Eco-complete substrate, very hard water at pH ~7.8, ammonia/NO3/NO2 very low or undetectable, ~80 degrees F, lots of Vals and Crypts with some Anubias in a dim corner, moderately populated with brown-tailed pencilfish, dwarf hovering zebra loaches, paskai rainbowfish, a pair of German Rams, and Amano shrimp. I do ~40% water changes 3x per month, I treat 1-4 times per week with Fourish Excel, and I feed a variety of dried and frozen food plus live grindal worms.

My tank got ich about 9 months ago and I treated with salt and increased temperature, and ever since then I can't keep floating plants alive. I was throwing away handfuls of frogbit and hornwort before the ich, but now the frogbit slowly dies and only the young tips of hornwort hang on. I tried re-buying both as well as adding Salvinia, but no luck. Around that time, I also started getting BBA. I slowed it way down by removing all wood and treating with H2O2, plus buying more Amano shrimp, but it's starting to come back.

Here are my questions:

1. I've got 5 years' worth of mulm in the substrate--when I clean the tank I just wave the siphon above the substrate so as not to disturb the plants' roots. Is this a constant phosphate source for the BBA? Is it time for me to take out all the plants and really clean out the substrate? (I'll add here that it's really easy to over-feed with grindal worms.)

2. I'm totally winging it with lighting, because LEDs don't conform to watts/gallon measurements and I've never dropped $1K on a PAR meter. Should I change my lighting? I decreased the brightness and daily duration months ago to what I described above, but I want my plants to thrive and outcompete the algae. Plus, my tank was fine for four years with brigher light for longer duration than I'm currently using. No direct sunlight from windows is hitting my tank.

3. I used to get shade from all my floating plants, but now I don't. I'm totally clueless about why these plants won't grow when the crypts and vals are all fine and when I've done a ton of water changes in the 9 months since the salt treatment. ANY advice on this one would be greatly appreciated!

4. Should I invest in a bunch of additional tests and supplements (e.g. iron, phosphate, etc.)?

Thanks for taking the time to read this long post! I'd love any advice you all have got!

Last edited by hirundo; 05-03-2020 at 05:29 AM. Reason: typo
hirundo is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 05-18-2020, 01:53 AM
Planted Tank Enthusiast
 
PTrader: (1/100%)
Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: Michigan
Posts: 649
Whenever my frogbit died it was because it wasn't getting the nutrients it needed. Perhaps you need to start a new dosing regimen? The light may need to be tweeked a bit too. I'm not sure why you have it on the settings that you do. I have those lights and love them. I put them on the sunshine with clouds setting and everything is happy. I wouldn't get to the point that you're pulling up your plants to scrub your substrate. You can also try blowing any debris up into the substrate into the water column. I do this when I'm doing my water changes. Honestly though, that's only going to help with any algae issues and not what you're describing. The best thing you can do is test all your nutrient levels and find out where you really are. Good luck!

This isn't rocket surgery
loach guy is offline  
post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 05-18-2020, 06:27 AM
Algae Grower
 
roshannatasha2188's Avatar
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: May 2020
Location: Bangalore, India
Posts: 5
https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/1...topics/1308199

Seem to have similar problem but with algae only and time frame matches too.

Last edited by roshannatasha2188; 05-19-2020 at 03:12 PM.
roshannatasha2188 is offline  
 
post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 05-20-2020, 01:05 AM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: May 2020
Posts: 5
Thanks for the replies. I've tested for phosphates and they are not the problem.

Hypothesis #49,682: Not enough nitrates in the water for the floating plants to survive. (I've had some fish deaths in the last 6 months, so less fish pee lately.) I'm going to add more fish and fertilize semi-weekly with Flourish.

Hypothesis #49,683: Not enough light for robust plant growth. Supported by failure to thrive in Crypt balansae and Crypt parva. I'm returning the light to ~50% brightness, upping the red wavelength content a bit, adding more plants, and fertilizing with Flourish tabs.

Hypothesis #49684: Salt buildup at the waterline at one end may be keeping water too salty. I cleared out that salt buildup, and I'll research ways to measure salinity/specific gravity.

I'm changing multiple things at once, so I won't know what (if anything) helped, but I'll keep you all posted. So far, the tiny little bits of BBA are shrinking and/or not growing.

Bump: Oh, and I have the light on the setting I do because that's the only way the built-in timer works. The timer apparently only controls the user-defined "daylight" setting. My settings are how I've defined "daylight."
hirundo is offline  
post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-28-2020, 01:11 PM
Newbie
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Sep 2020
Posts: 2
I had an outbreak of BBA. I did a lot of research and came across a Aquarium Tread of how this one person got rid of his BBA. I'm not saying for you to do this but I followed his remedy and sure enough it worked within 2 weeks.

I have a planted 40 gal tank with BBA that started to overtake my equipment, plants & rocks in my tank. I got a large spray bottle and poured an entire bottle of Sechem's Flourish Excel and an equal amount of 3% Hydrogen Peroxide into it so it was a mixture of 50-50%.
Pumped out 75% of water so to expose areas with the BBA. I then heavily sprayed down all the surfaces and let it sit for 1/2 hour. I then added new clean water to tank and turned down my programable LED lighting to a minimum for a week. I then repeated the same procedure the following week. All the BBA died off completely. And all my fish had an extra treat by picking off all the dying BBA.
bodul67 is offline  
post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-29-2020, 08:26 PM
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Dec 2016
Location: North Jersey
Posts: 101
Phosphorus should be around 2-3 PPM, and up your Nitrates. I have a little bit of BBA on one of my Anubias but it isn't to bad, and it's also closest to the light. I had ICH a couple of weeks ago and just used IchX that stuff works great. The only thing that got blue is the silicone in my tank. All my snails and shrimp survived as all my fish. I tried the turn up the heat in your tank gradually and a huge air stone voodoo magic, and that nearly annihilated my whole fish stock last year when I had the Ich.

The Green Stuff
Boostr is offline  
post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-29-2020, 09:03 PM
Planted Member
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Mar 2020
Posts: 228
Quote:
Originally Posted by bodul67 View Post
I had an outbreak of BBA. I did a lot of research and came across a Aquarium Tread of how this one person got rid of his BBA. I'm not saying for you to do this but I followed his remedy and sure enough it worked within 2 weeks.

I have a planted 40 gal tank with BBA that started to overtake my equipment, plants & rocks in my tank. I got a large spray bottle and poured an entire bottle of Sechem's Flourish Excel and an equal amount of 3% Hydrogen Peroxide into it so it was a mixture of 50-50%.
Pumped out 75% of water so to expose areas with the BBA. I then heavily sprayed down all the surfaces and let it sit for 1/2 hour. I then added new clean water to tank and turned down my programable LED lighting to a minimum for a week. I then repeated the same procedure the following week. All the BBA died off completely. And all my fish had an extra treat by picking off all the dying BBA.
Ditto. I was starting to get a lot of BBA on my Buce which I have mostly glued to rocks. I pulled them out and used a syringe to coat them with Excell. I let them sit for about 20 minutes and then submerged them in water with more dilute Excell. After putting them back into the tank the BBA has turned from what looked like a black color to light red. From what I have read it is dying off now.

Of course the real question is how it got started. Inconsistent CO2 and overfeeding come up most often in searches.

Working on that!
mourip is offline  
post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 10-03-2020, 11:10 PM
Wannabe Guru
 
AbbeysDad's Avatar
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Apr 2016
Location: Southern Tier of Central New York, USA (Finger Lakes Region)
Posts: 1,402
I'd consider a massive water change and cleaning the substrate OR a total tear down and start over. It's likely the salt did your plants in and an incorrect balance of nutrients doesn't help. It doesn't seem like your light is the problem as floating grow under almost any light.
mooner likes this.

My website and Blog:


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
-
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
AbbeysDad is offline  
Reply

Tags
None

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the The Planted Tank Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome