SAEs and Hair Algae - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 01-09-2003, 07:54 PM Thread Starter
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I have survived my Brown Algae problem with 2 Otos and 2 small SAEs in my 10 gal. But now it's Attack of the Hair Algae.

I think it's Hair Algae; please tell me if I'm wrong. It's easy to describe. It's greenish-gray and up to a few inches long, but NOT in single strands like a grass lawn. It looks like an old Chinese man's long, scraggly goatee.

I thought the SAEs were supposed to eat it, but they just cruse right on by. Once someone posted that they will eat it when they get bigger. Is that so? If it is by then I will have more Hair Algae than plants.

Please don't forget my question about the SAEs, but I have another. I'm adding DIY CO2 injection in the next couple of days. I previously switched to fluorescent lighting, started using a good fertilizer and Iron supplement, and now I'm adding CO2. Do you think that might help with the Hair Algae?

My plants are still growing very slowly if at all. (I'm a real novice.) I'm hoping the CO2 will help.
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 01-09-2003, 07:59 PM
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I'm not sure if the SAE's are supposed to eat the hair algae. They actually might, but if there is another type of algae present that the SAE's actually prefer, then they might just be avoiding it out of preference.

Switching to CO2 supplementation and increasing light will increase plant growth, which will definitely make it more difficult for algae to grow. This will especially be the case if you have a lot of fast-growing stem plants such as Hygrophilia.

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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 01-09-2003, 10:29 PM
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The best hair algae wiper-outer I've ever seen are Rosey Barbs. These little SOB's will eat it with a vengence. However, they will also eat delicate plants.

I got 5 of them and put them in my tank to control a hair algae outbreak. They preferred for the algae until it was almost all gone, then they attacked the Moneywort.

I trapped them and gave them back to the LFS. However, unknown to me at the time, they had spawned in my tank. I still have one baby rosey barb left. He's too small to do any damage now, but eventually, he'll have to go too.

So if you want to try them, you might want to arrange to "borrow" a couple and send them back where they came from once your hair algae problem is gone.

Good luck...

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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 01-10-2003, 12:32 AM
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I keep some flag fish in my main tank to control hair algae, they seem to adore the stuff.
when I get plants with any signs of it in my other tanks I now put them into the main tank for a few days to give the flags a bit of a treat as they have all but cleared my main tank of all traces.

one of the females is now looking nice and plump with eggs so hopefully I will be having a go at breeding them once the males are in condition.

the only problem I have noticed with them is they need to be in a small group or else they over look the algae, also they like mayaca flowers oh well, its the price you have to pay for no hair algae i suppose.

I might have to get a few Rosey Barbs for my dwarf cichlid tank as there is a little developing in there and the flags are a little to passive to cope with 'Fatboy' the male apisto or even 'Tinkerbell' his mate
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