Could use some opinions regarding algae problem - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 09-18-2005, 03:17 PM Thread Starter
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Could use some opinions regarding algae problem


I'm looking for some opinions on how I can solve my tank's current dilemma, the main one being a kind of algae that has built up on my hairgrass within the past month.

The algae is a very deep green, and appears to be a sort of sticky film that grows between each individual strand of hairgrass. In fact it looks like someone had poured some dark green hair-gel into my tank.

I'm not sure what kind of algae it is, but I know it definately isn't green water, hair algae or beard algae.

Please let me know if you can identify it or better yet, suggest a way I might get rid of it.

My tanks specs are:

8 gallon bowfront tank with 8 fancy guppies
plants: dwarf hairgrass & glosso
filtration: eheim 2213 canister
heating: hydor 200w inline heater
lighting: 2x 20w fluros
substrate: 100% eco complete
CO2: DIY method
50% water change once a week

fertilization schedule, twice each week I dose the following:
3ml flourish excel
1ml flourish
2.5ml flourish trace
0.75ml flourish phosphorus
2ml flourish iron
0.75ml flourish nitrogen
0.5ml flourish potassium
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 09-18-2005, 03:28 PM
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Its a cyanobacteria...or commonly green slime algae. Do a thread search (upper right corner of webpage) and you should find all sorts of good info on how to combat it. Two methods should pop up: 1. blackout for 4-5 days after dosing potassium nitrate or 2. Mardel's Maracyn antibiotic pills for a week treatment (no harm to fish or plants).

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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 09-19-2005, 02:52 PM
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I have had luck with an unconventional means of controlling blue-green algae or cyanobacteria: house plants in the tank. I put two vine-type ivy cuttings and a "lucky bamboo" (not really a bamboo) in the tank, allowing their leaves to grow outside the tank. As the ivy grew long roots, the algae disappeared. It had been clogging the floating hornwort and growing on the gravel, swordplant, and anubius nana. Now, it is barely noticable. I think the land plants are sucking out nutrients that the algae needs, but I don't know which nutrients.

I don't know if this would work in a different tank. You have far more light and use fertilizers and C02, which I don't. That is the frustrating thing about this hobby. A remedy that works for one person may not work for another, because of any number of differences in water, light, nutrients, fish load, etc.

I am sure you will receive suggestions from others too.
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 09-21-2005, 12:21 PM
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I was able to rid myself of this algae by physical removal followed by 5 days of TOTAL darkness. The plants and fish survived, and the cyano did not. It actually took several of these treatments! That is some nasty, tough stuff and there's info all over the web on it.
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