Algae problems-hair-help - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-04-2017, 05:46 PM Thread Starter
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Algae problems-hair-help

Alright so it seems i have developed a hair algae problem that i cant seem to get rid of.

The tank has been up and running for 6 months, plants have been in there for maybe 4-5 months.

Ive been fighting this algae problem for a month or so now and its getting worse. Im changing water weekly. reduced light time to about 5.5 hours.

tank temp is around 80 degree's (heater is off thats just california room temp)

55 gallon tank
dual t5 lights if i remember right (been a while since i ordered them) think 6700k is the plant light?
Dose excel every day.

Tank consist of:
-15 cardinals
-some snails and 4 oto's.

I tested the water today
Nitrite-0
Ammonia- .25ppm
Nitrate- looks like 40-80ppm

I tested my tapwater and i have nitrates in it about -20ppm. (so water changes wont help much)

THE DILEMMA:
--I live in an apartment 3 stories up, buying RO water isnt practical.

What can i do?



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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-04-2017, 05:57 PM
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Maybe try a black out for a couple of days and some purigen


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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-04-2017, 08:33 PM
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What's changed in the past month? I relate hair algae to excess light, have you raised the light at all. Manual remove with a toothbrush daily and raising the light may just do it.
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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-04-2017, 09:01 PM
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The addition of fast growing stem plants such as hornwort or some fast growing floaters like duckweed (can be a pain to get rid of in the future but effective at removing nitrates and can just scoop out and throw away as needed) will help with nitrates. Are you injecting Co2? If not you light intensity may be a bit high and doing as @Nlewis suggested raising the lights may help. The addition of amano shrimp or RCS will also help reduce algae and keep mosses nice and clean although I don't recommend this as a solution they do help.

A few quick questions. Do you have ammonia readings from your tap water? What is your Phosphate reading? PH? How much/often are you feeding and what? water change (amount and frequency) and filter cleaning schedule? What type of substrate? Filter used? I know its a lot to ask so I apologize for that.

I think adding lots of fast growing plants, raising the lighting a few inches and adding some shrimp would go a long way to controlling/correcting the problem from the info given so far but waiting on your reply.

Dan
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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-04-2017, 10:16 PM
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Agree with others, but if desperate, I have used Tetra Algae Control in the past. It's safe for fish and plants, but not for inverts. It will kill the algae, which you then remove by hand. But unless you keep using it, the problem will recur til you find and fix the reason.

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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-05-2017, 12:07 AM
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Well if you cut your lighting hours any more your plants won't have enough to survive. A two day blackout will weaken the algae and kill some of it and your plants will probably survive. To be honest I have seen any level of light reduction effective in controlling it.

What fertilizers or water additive are you sing? Nutrient deficiencies in my opinion are a common cause of algae issues. If you don't have enough of a single nutrient (there are 15 nutrients plants need) your plants may stop or grow slowly. Algae however can toleratee very low nutrient levels and maintain rapid growth. So a nutrient defyciency can allow algae to take over a tank.
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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-05-2017, 06:27 AM Thread Starter
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Using flourish excel for nutrients. dosed 1 time daily.

Fish are being fed in the evenings, i dont feed more than they consume.

Light hours are about 5.5-6 hours a day in the evenings (when we are home)

Water changes are atleast 30% each week (until i get this under control)

I do have a couple amono shrimp, I did have some RCS however they didnt do to well (proboblly due to water conditions)

The light is positioned where its always been. I can raise it up an inch or two to test it out?

Currently i have some wisteria, moss a bit of anacharis in the tank (to soak up nitrates), however the wisteria growth has slowed and the leaves have lightened to a lighet green, most of the new growth is showing at the bottom of the plant. ( i am new to wisteria)
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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-05-2017, 09:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by meximan View Post
Using flourish excel for nutrients. dosed 1 time daily.

Fish are being fed in the evenings, i dont feed more than they consume.

Light hours are about 5.5-6 hours a day in the evenings (when we are home)

Water changes are atleast 30% each week (until i get this under control)

I do have a couple amono shrimp, I did have some RCS however they didnt do to well (proboblly due to water conditions)

The light is positioned where its always been. I can raise it up an inch or two to test it out?

Currently i have some wisteria, moss a bit of anacharis in the tank (to soak up nitrates), however the wisteria growth has slowed and the leaves have lightened to a lighet green, most of the new growth is showing at the bottom of the plant. ( i am new to wisteria)
Flourish Excel is a carbon source, it has no fertilizers in it. If you're going to fertilize the tank than you should consider getting a set of dry ferts. This is the best bang for your buck and will last a long time.

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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-05-2017, 09:58 PM
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Yes sounds like its partially ferts and partially light "intensity" (not photo period). It would be a good idea like was said above to pick up some dry ferts, this will give you the best bang for your buck and also as you have 20ppm nitrates from tap water you can customize it to account for that and in a low tech you prob won't need the kno3 with nitrates like that. I would also raise your light a few inches and see if this helps, you could probably keep the photo period at about 6hrs until it clears up and gradually increase 30 min a week until you reach 8hrs. (personally I would have lowered intensity before the photo period). Remove as much manually every day as you can and make sure there is good flow in your tank. It will take some time to tell if either is helping so be patient.

Dan
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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-06-2017, 02:17 AM Thread Starter
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oh! learned something new today.

In that case where can i get some ferts? recommendations?
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post #11 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-06-2017, 02:19 AM
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oh! learned something new today.

In that case where can i get some ferts? recommendations?
EI based NPK + CSM+B - NilocG Aquatics
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post #12 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-06-2017, 03:10 AM
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oh! learned something new today.



In that case where can i get some ferts? recommendations?


If you're in the US it is highly unlikely you have 20ppm nitrate from the tap. FDA requires less than 10ppm from the tap. I would bet your test kit is off. Raise the lights up for sure and maybe even consider 1 t5 bulb if the problem persists. You can get dry ferts from forum members here in the forsale section of the member forums. I purchased mine from green leaf aquariums .com for $25 shipped for about a two year supply. I suggest reading the fertilizer stickies in the fertilizer section of the forum. In the mean time manual removal like crazy


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post #13 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-06-2017, 03:17 AM Thread Starter
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Its possible..although our apartments are old perhaps the plumbing is contributing..We dont drink it.

I thought it was off to with my old test kit, so i actually bought a second api kit and the results were the same.

Dang thats alot cheaper ! I just bought a package from niloc.

Not wasting any time :P
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