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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-01-2014, 04:49 PM Thread Starter
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beginner seeking advice

Hi Everyone,
I am new to this hobby and have attempted my first planted tank with some community fish. Tank has been running for approximately 4 months (October 25 2013) and below are pictures of what it looks like today. There must be something I am not doing right and hoping you kind folks on this forum can give me some insight.

29G Bowfront
Co2 Injection / Aquatek Mini Regulator / Timer runs 930am - 930pm
AquaClear 70 HOB Filter / Foam Insert / API Bio Chem Zorb / 2 Bags BioMax
1 T8 18'' Full Spectrum Bulb / Timer runs 930am - 930pm
Finnex Ray2 Dual7k LED Combo / Timer runs 1230pm - 730pm
2x12lb Bags FloraMax Midnight Substrate

Flourish (1-2 doses per week / half cap full)
Flourish Excel (every other day / half cap full)
Flourish Tabs (only used 2 tabs so far)

Malaysian Driftwood
Water Sprite
Java Fern
Amazon Sword

4 Rummy-nose tetra
5 Neon tetra
1 Bristlenose Pleco (awesome)
2 Julii Cory
3 Rasboras
2 Gold Ram
1 Betta / Crown Tail
5-8 Otos

Water is tested every other day using API Freshwater Master Kit. Currently I am changing roughly 4 gallons of water every 3-5 days using RO/DI water purchased from LFS.

3/1/14 Water Test (water change 2 days ago)
PH: 7.0 (gradually dips to around 6.6-6.8 when Co2 and lights are on)
NH3: 0ppm
NO2: 0ppm
NO3: 5.0-10ppm

Hopefully I have provided enough information for a good start.

Attached Images

Last edited by war_eagle; 03-01-2014 at 06:34 PM. Reason: wrong info
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-01-2014, 05:00 PM
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Looks like you got some algae growth there, Light seems to be having a little long photo period. I would try cutting it back a bit just to see if that is the case. I would try shortening the time that your Ray is on and also cut back on the main light. I do a photoperiod of 8 hrs and seems to be doing great.

More water changes also helps to get rid of the problem imo. Do you use straight RO or did you use tap also? Is your Co2 dialed in correctly? Usually when there is algae it is because something is lacking in on direction and causes the algae to win in the battle for balance in the system. Excel will usually help get rid of some of the algae. Hope this helps a bit, I am always frustrated when you cant seem to get it gone. Also you can try adding some Amano shrimp, Nerite Snails, you have otos which is good at cleanup. They might help clean some algae up.
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-01-2014, 05:40 PM Thread Starter
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thanks for your response ctaylor

Co2 liquid indicator is green during lighting hours and it runs around 1 bubble per second.

I use the Finnex Ray2 for my main source of light and the full spectrum bulb just turns on when the Co2 regulator kicks on.

I use straight RO/DI water adding nothing except Flourish and Excel. I'm not real certain how to read the GH/KH drop kit I purchased but just tested and below are the number of drops it took to change the color of each.

GH 4
KH 2

I also failed to mention I do have some river type rocks and a ceramic pot that has some BBA on it, I think you can see it in one of the photos.
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-01-2014, 05:57 PM
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holy mother of mary. That's quite the algae farm you got there lol. Perhaps try lowering your light period to around 7-8 hours ish. You can also try a bit of hand removal aswell (wont do much, but will help a little)On the upside your ottos and bristlenose must be having a field day lol.
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-01-2014, 06:12 PM
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That is waaay too much light for those low light plants you got there. Go down to six or so hours. You can bump it up to seven or eight for more plant growth when algae has died down.

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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-01-2014, 06:25 PM Thread Starter
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i have adjusted the timers on lighting to 6 hours, will monitor this for a couple of weeks, thanks for the reply.

**Correction, my lighting is a single T8 18'' full spectrum bulb, not T5.

Last edited by war_eagle; 03-01-2014 at 06:35 PM. Reason: correction
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