BBA or something else? ID PLEASE - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 08-04-2019, 10:02 PM Thread Starter
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BBA or something else? ID PLEASE

Hello,

Could I please get an ID of this algae that has been growing throughout my tank? I think it is BBA but am having trouble confirming as it seems to grow like a hair algae rather than in puffs like BBA usually does.

IMGUR LINK: https://imgur.com/a/SVOOcR2

Thanks in advance for the help
-Grimey
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 08-04-2019, 10:36 PM
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From what I can see in the picture, it looks like a combination of bba and green spotted algae.
Is it only on the plants or do you have it on rocks or equipment?


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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 08-04-2019, 11:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vacko000 View Post
From what I can see in the picture, it looks like a combination of bba and green spotted algae.
Is it only on the plants or do you have it on rocks or equipment?


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I second that, and a bit of hair algae in the mix too I think.
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 08-04-2019, 11:05 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the confirmation. GAAAAAAAAAAAHHHH

And yes it grows on damn near everything... the java ferns and red featherwort seem to be the most resilient though...

gonna reduce ferts and try to stabilize the CO2 output from my regulator.

advice very welcome! can provide detailed info if needed

using the flourish line of ferts dosing
flourish
nitrogen
phosphorous
potassium
iron
trace
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 08-04-2019, 11:17 PM
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First try and remove as much as you can with hand. Cut the leafs that you canít clean. Try big water changes 70-80% every 3-4 days, and do that for at least two weeks. After that if it still keeps growing try reducing fearts complety or try couple of days of total black out.
Bba can be rely rely hard to get rid of.



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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 08-04-2019, 11:23 PM Thread Starter
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thanks for the info.

what's the purpose of the water changes? as in what nutrient am I trying to reduce?

I was told to increase nitrate to 10 ppm and increase phosphorous to create a balance of macro nutrients. Is this correct?

Time to get to work on the plants BBA is a mofo to scrape off...
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 08-04-2019, 11:36 PM
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Water changes can help reduce decaying organic compounds that can be fueling algae. Not something you can necessarily test for (although high nitrates may be one indication). However I don't think I would reduce fertilizing if you are injecting co2, removing something the plants need to grow will only fuel more algae growth ultimately. You need an abundance of everything to some extent if you are injecting co2. Inconsistent co2 injection is reported to contribute a lot to bba so that may be the root cause of what you are dealing with. Do you have a drop checker?
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 08-04-2019, 11:39 PM
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BBA and for that matter most algae isn't reliant on the ferts we dose to thrive. It gets started when there is too much organic content in the water for a given setup to process. The realese of ammonia from this organic waste is what starts the algae from the spore phase that you and I don't see, but is there. Too much light, not enough fast growing plants, not enough water changes the algae will be worse. Co2 will help if you have good plant mass, otherwise it won't help you.

The water changes help reduce the organic content before it decomposes. So do things like carbon and purigen. Once you see the algae it's like any other plant, but you can't really remove the ferts since the plants need it. You want to remove organic waste and tighten up your light cycle to slow it up so the plants can out compete.
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 08-05-2019, 12:13 AM Thread Starter
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That definitely explains it... tank wasn't fully cycled until about a week ago and was getting small amounts of ammonia that I was doing water changes for.

So i'll keep my dosing schedule then. I've been following the seachem dosing schedule using flourish, nitrogen, iron, potassium, phosphorous, and trace at 75% of the recommended dosage: https://www.seachem.com/downloads/ch...Dose-Chart.pdf

let me know if you think thats a good amount??
here's a pic of the tank so you can get an idea of plant mass as well: https://imgur.com/a/gfZmI7a

Also I turned my fluval planted led to 8 hrs recently... good or should I go lower?

I have a drop checker and it goes green which is supposed to be adequate CO2. I run 1-2 bubbles per second.

Thanks for the tips!
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 08-05-2019, 01:03 AM
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Your tank seems to be moderately planted so yes I would stick to what your doing dosing wise, but important to do weekly water changes in the area of 50%.

Lighting is usually the mistake most make at startup. Many start with 8-10 hrs, when you really want to start with 5 hrs and then work you way up depending on how the tank is doing. So I would drop it to 5 hrs. You can run it longer if you have a light that allows very dim viewable light and you can run the strong "midday burst" for a few hrs, otherwise I would keep it around 5 for now and slowly increase as things improve.

Besides the drop checker an accepted way of knowing if you are getting adequate co2 is to measure your ph degassed, so before co2 comes on or put some in a cup and let it sit for a few hours and then measure your tank's PH after it's been running for most of the day. Your looking for about a 1.0 PH drop. So if your degassed is 7.5 and your gassed is 6.5 that would be good. If it's less you probably want to increase co2 a bit.
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post #11 of 14 (permalink) Old 08-05-2019, 09:23 AM Thread Starter
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Oay, gonna bring it down to 5 hours.

Also as far as manually removing BBA... do you recommend any hydrogen peroxide techniques? spot-treating or the one-two punch technique are tempting
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post #12 of 14 (permalink) Old 08-05-2019, 04:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grimey View Post
Oay, gonna bring it down to 5 hours.



Also as far as manually removing BBA... do you recommend any hydrogen peroxide techniques? spot-treating or the one-two punch technique are tempting


That is a very efective method. Before you do it turn off all equipment that creates water flow, put hydrogen peroxide on the plants and let is like that for 10-15 minutes. The bubbles should start to appear on the algae, after that just turn the flow on.
You can repeat the procedure a couple times a day.


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post #13 of 14 (permalink) Old 08-06-2019, 07:35 PM Thread Starter
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Did a spot-treatment on my anubias and swords yesterday with full strength 3% peroxide. Probably used about 30mL in total. This morning, the BBA has started to turn pink and I expect it to be gone by tomorrow.
Do I need to do a water change before treating with peroxide again or does it dissipate over time?

Algae has reacted well to the 5 hr light change and algal growth on glass has definitely slowed down.
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post #14 of 14 (permalink) Old 08-08-2019, 12:16 AM
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I use Easylife Algexit with really good results.
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