Tank crash? Sulphur smell and brown diatoms - The Planted Tank Forum
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 3 (permalink) Old 02-08-2014, 06:02 PM Thread Starter
Planted Tank Obsessed
Alplily's Avatar
PTrader: (8/100%)
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Estes Park, CO, USA
Posts: 332
Tank crash? Sulphur smell and brown diatoms

Eeeek! I came back from two weeks away to find my 35 gallon tank at my office overrun with brown diatoms and stinking of sulfur. My coworker charged with feeding the fish says the filter stopped running over the last week. Except for typical algae blooms as things got settled out, I've never had trouble with this tank. Fish (harlequin rasboras, a few sorta valuable guppies, a pearl gourami, and a mated pair of plecos) are still alive and look OK, all things considered. I've done two 12-15 gallon water changes in the last two days, and am vacuuming and stirring up the substrate (Eco complete 3-5" deep). Should I just keep that up for awhile? If substrate went anaerobic, do I need to do anything other than vacuum and stir? I have malaysian trumpet snails in another tank and could add some to keep thing aerated. I have ordered a new power filter and until it arrives I have set up two spare power filters, a 30g and a 20g, and an air stone to keep things moving. Thanks!

37 gallon community; 10 gallon S-SS CRS; 2x10 gallon guppies; Specialties: Japan blue guppies (wild type), Ginga sulfureus guppies, Blond platinum LS guppies with purple mutation.
Non-aquatics: Off-track thoroughbred racehorse; 2 Maine Coon-type cats; 2 fluffy house rabbits; 60 orchid plants.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Alplily is offline  
Sponsored Links
post #2 of 3 (permalink) Old 02-08-2014, 07:12 PM
Planted Tank Guru
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Contra Costa CA
Posts: 11,721
If the fish are still alive, then I think the amount of anaerobic bacteria is not too bad, so continue the cleaning.
Dig into the substrate where you can without disturbing plant roots. Plants add oxygen to the substrate, so those areas are probably OK anyway.

Monitor the nitrogen cycle. The bacteria that turn ammonia into nitrite then nitrate need a LOT of oxygen, so if there was less water circulation, especially through the filter, a significant amount of the bacteria may have died off.
Diana is offline  
post #3 of 3 (permalink) Old 02-09-2014, 04:06 PM Thread Starter
Planted Tank Obsessed
Alplily's Avatar
PTrader: (8/100%)
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Estes Park, CO, USA
Posts: 332
Thank you, Diana, for the moral support! Off to go change another 15 gallons of water and do some vacuuming. Gah!
Alplily is offline  


Quick Reply

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


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

Email Address:


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