Fluval Spec V Algae Problens - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-09-2020, 06:27 PM Thread Starter
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Fluval Spec V Algae Problens

good afternoon everyone

Has any Fluval spec V owners have issues with algae?

I cant seems to beat it with my stock lights on 8 houra a day

Jason

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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-09-2020, 06:46 PM
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good afternoon everyone

Has any Fluval spec V owners have issues with algae?

I cant seems to beat it with my stock lights on 8 houra a day

Jason
Yes, I have hair algae. But, I leave the light on for about the same as you.

I try to encourage this algae because it is a shrimp tank and they appear to be drawn to areas of tank that have it.



This is a pretty powerful little light. I would suggest having light on for less time or finding a way to lessen the light impact. I know @somewhatshocked had modified this light to do just that. Maybe he will chime in and give you some pointers.


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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-09-2020, 07:06 PM
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Test ammonia often

Algae become visible shortly after an ammonia spike. I put 12-hours of light on my nano tanks to see if lights cause algae. It doesn't. After algae become visible your lights help it grow.

Have you tried Excel? Here's what I do. I do a 50% water change, use one cap per 15 gallons. Turn lights off. Test for ammonia within 8-hours and if you see another spike, do another 30% water change and add more Excel (one cap per 30 gallons). After the algae begins to die (or sooner) buy a few Amano shrimp. They'll eat the dying/dead algae. As the algae change color and die it'll stop eating ammonia/nitrite/nitrate and give you another ammonia spike which causes the problem to reoccur and get worse. That's most likely is what you're seeing.

You may not see an ammonia spike if you have a heavily planted tank - the plants may use it before you do the test.
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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-09-2020, 07:49 PM
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Make of aquarium probably has very little to do with it.

Got picture of tank, type of plants and type of algae your fighting with?

Nitrate and phosphate readings and what fert your dosing, how often and how much of it?

Water change amounts and frequency?
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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-09-2020, 08:05 PM
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Algae become visible shortly after an ammonia spike. I put 12-hours of light on my nano tanks to see if lights cause algae. It doesn't. After algae become visible your lights help it grow.

Have you tried Excel? Here's what I do. I do a 50% water change, use one cap per 15 gallons. Turn lights off. Test for ammonia within 8-hours and if you see another spike, do another 30% water change and add more Excel (one cap per 30 gallons). After the algae begins to die (or sooner) buy a few Amano shrimp. They'll eat the dying/dead algae. As the algae change color and die it'll stop eating ammonia/nitrite/nitrate and give you another ammonia spike which causes the problem to reoccur and get worse. That's most likely is what you're seeing.

You may not see an ammonia spike if you have a heavily planted tank - the plants may use it before you do the test.
There is no ammonia in my tank. If there was my shrimp would not be alive.


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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-09-2020, 08:26 PM
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There is no ammonia in my tank. If there was my shrimp would not be alive.
I'd put money on it that you moved some plants just before the algae bloom. That's when the ammonia spike happened.
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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-09-2020, 08:36 PM
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Cut back on the lights, do some water changes.

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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-09-2020, 08:40 PM
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I'd put money on it that you moved some plants just before the algae bloom. That's when the ammonia spike happened.
Again, if there was an ammonia spike my sensitive shrimp would not survive.

Thats the problem with blanket theories, they refuse to account for the variables.
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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-09-2020, 09:01 PM
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Again, if there was an ammonia spike my sensitive shrimp would not survive.

Thats the problem with blanket theories, they refuse to account for the variables.
My ghost and Amano shrimp weathered an algae and ammonia spike.
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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-09-2020, 09:38 PM
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My ghost and Amano shrimp weathered an algae and ammonia spike.
Well, you were fortunate, weren't you? This is not usually the case. My Royal Blue tigers would not survive even the slightest trace of ammonia, that's why I cycled my tanks for 2 months before I even added shrimp.

Something we learn really quickly on this forum is that our own experiences do not make "a rule" for others to follow. Our tanks and water chemistry are all different- variables matter.
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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-09-2020, 11:28 PM
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Another way to limit light is to use floating plants that will also soak up any excess nutrients & prevent a spike. I've got an overstocked 55g that seemingly miraculously never has an ammonia or nitrate spike because my red root floaters soak it all up. I'll harvest 1/3 every week, and within a couple of days the top is covered, and they start mounding up--to the detriment of my plants below that aren't getting enough light or nutrients.

(Before people start preaching the evils of overstocking--I'm moving a bunch of the fish to a bigger new tank once some newly arrived super red plecos have finished quarantine. Apparently quarantine isn't just for new fish anymore....)
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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-10-2020, 01:56 AM
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Well, you were fortunate, weren't you? This is not usually the case. My Royal Blue tigers would not survive even the slightest trace of ammonia, that's why I cycled my tanks for 2 months before I even added shrimp.

Something we learn really quickly on this forum is that our own experiences do not make "a rule" for others to follow. Our tanks and water chemistry are all different- variables matter.
I shared an idea that works for me. He's free to take it or leave it.

I don't see anyone challenging the basic science right? Excel is an algicide and ammonia causes algae. If you read Walstad's book she writes her dirted tanks can deal with a dead fish. She doesn't say there wasn't any ammonia since she didn't even know the fish died. Dead fish almost always cause an ammonia spike so unless your fish are immortal you've had spikes too.
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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-10-2020, 02:04 AM
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I shared an idea that works for me. He's free to take it or leave it.

I don't see anyone challenging the basic science right? Excel is an algicide and ammonia causes algae. If you read Walstad's book she writes her dirted tanks can deal with a dead fish. She doesn't say there wasn't any ammonia since she didn't even know the fish died. Dead fish almost always cause an ammonia spike so unless your fish are immortal you've had spikes too.
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Got picture of tank, type of plants and type of algae your fighting with?

Nitrate and phosphate readings and what fert your dosing, how often and how much of it?

Water change amounts and frequency?



This. Need some context OP. Then we can go about solving your issue.
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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-10-2020, 12:58 PM
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Algae is typically a result of an imbalance of nutrients and/or lighting.

Allowing any light fixture to remain on for 12 hours per day could lead to algae. Having a light on for a couple hours per day could lead to algae. Finding the proper balance of light levels, nutrient levels and photoperiod isn't difficult but it requires some effort and not just a blanket, one-size-fits-all approach.

Intentional or not, this is bad advice and general misinformation - something we try to avoid in this hobby. Particularly when it comes to sensitive species like shrimp.

Excel is and can be deadly to invertebrates. Excel is Metricide 14, just at a different concentration. The active ingredient is Glutaraldehyde - a common pesticide. Advising a newcomer to the hobby to randomly dose their tank with it is a disaster waiting to happen.

Ammonia spikes - even local/area-specific spikes in a tank - can be deadly to tank inhabitants shrimp. But a tiny ammonia spike isn't always (or even usually) the cause of algal growth.

Buying livestock to try to correct a problem you can't accurately pinpoint can also lead to myriad issues in an aquarium.

It's important not to be argumentative or insulting to other members. Common sense but also a key portion of our Acceptable Use Policy. Intentional misinformation is most unwelcome. Let's avoid that completely.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jamie153 View Post
Algae become visible shortly after an ammonia spike. I put 12-hours of light on my nano tanks to see if lights cause algae. It doesn't. After algae become visible your lights help it grow.

Have you tried Excel? Here's what I do. I do a 50% water change, use one cap per 15 gallons. Turn lights off. Test for ammonia within 8-hours and if you see another spike, do another 30% water change and add more Excel (one cap per 30 gallons). After the algae begins to die (or sooner) buy a few Amano shrimp. They'll eat the dying/dead algae. As the algae change color and die it'll stop eating ammonia/nitrite/nitrate and give you another ammonia spike which causes the problem to reoccur and get worse. That's most likely is what you're seeing.

You may not see an ammonia spike if you have a heavily planted tank - the plants may use it before you do the test.
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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-10-2020, 06:00 PM
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Forgot to respond to this earlier.

I didn't really modify anything but I use a layer of fiberglass window screen material on top of the tank to diffuse light. I also run the tank with a 'siesta' of sorts in the middle of the day. That's mostly so I can enjoy the tanks when I'm in the same room with them. But a break seems to help a lot of people.

Note: in my tanks where I have plants or hardscape near(er) to the surface of the water, I generally have thicker layers of window screen to diffuse light in those areas. Helps a ton with algae but also allows me to keep low light plants in areas that aren't shaded.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Discusluv View Post
Yes, I have hair algae. But, I leave the light on for about the same as you.

I try to encourage this algae because it is a shrimp tank and they appear to be drawn to areas of tank that have it.



This is a pretty powerful little light. I would suggest having light on for less time or finding a way to lessen the light impact. I know @somewhatshocked had modified this light to do just that. Maybe he will chime in and give you some pointers.
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