The Frusteration Continues
I have had growth and algae issues for some time now and cannot seem to be able to figure things out. For starters, here is everything to do with my tank:
Tank- 38 gallon (36x12x20)
Lighting- Finnex Ray 2 (suspended roughly 8 inches above the water level)
Co2- Pressurized system with GLA regulator and GLA inline diffuser
Substrate- Mix of flourite black sand and eco complete fine grain
Filter- Sunsun hw302 Cannister
Tank kept at 76 degrees
I have so much to explain and ask so I am going to try to structure this the best I can.
Last Couple Months
Light- finnex right on tank rim, close to water
Ferts- Sunday 50% WC, Sun, Tues, Thurs dosing of macros (1/16 tsp K2SO4, KH2P04, and 1/4 tsp KNO3) Mon Wed Fri dosing micro (1/16 tsp Plantex)
CO2- Not very high, maybe 1 bps
Problems- Lots of Hair Algae, ok growth yet not nearly what I have seen in some tank journals, some brown algae
A Couple Weeks Ago
Light- Suspended at 6-8 inches above water level
Ferts- Sunday 50% WC, Sun, Tues, Thurs dosing of macros (1/8 tsp K2SO4, KH2P04, and 1/2 tsp KNO3) Mon Wed Fri dosing micro (1/8 tsp Plantex)
CO2- a lot higher, accidentally gassed an amano shrimp and had a couple scares with gasping fish
Problems- Hair Algae improving and not as obvious in tank (maybe thanks to addition of 4, now 3, amano shrimp) a lot more brown algae on tank, plants, and gathering on substrate
Recently (last 4 or 5 days)
Mostly the same thing as the last couple weeks except I have started to not dose KH2PO4 because I got a phosphate test kit and have 10 ppm+ in my tank. I am thinking this may have caused the brown algae. So currently I am dosing 1/8 K2SO4 and plantex, and 1/2 KNO3. Now, I spend a lot of my time on numerous forums and blogs doing a lot of research and compared to some of the tank journals I have seen I am not getting much growth.
CURRENT PLANT PROBLEMS
rotala nanjenshan- not much growth if at all, covered in brown algae
polysperma- washed out and hole filled growth
hygrophila compacta- has started to loose leaves which I have never seen before
staurogyne repens- I have just moved them in my tank but they are melting and I have not seen much growth from them at all, I have had them for a little over a month
I would like to address all these problems but I would also really like to fix my algae problem. The hair algae is not what it used to be but I definitely still have some, there is brown algae all over my plants and glass if I do not clean them, and there is what I think is green spot algae on my glass. I don't know what to do. I do not think it is lack of Co2 because I have gassed a amano and have almost gassed some of my fish on multiple occasions. I did have a drop checker in my tank, however it was yellow all the time and the solution seemed to find its way out after a while. I do have lots of micro bubbles in my tank. Is this evidence that there is co2 or is this bad because it is not dissolving completely into the water? As far as the light, it may be responsible for the hair algae, but it is not giving me any redish coloring on my polysperma or limnophila which causes me to think the intensity is not that high. The ferts may be the culprit. I am doing my best to do research and understand the ei method. I am looking up deficiencies such as the holes in my polysperma when they occur and trying to compensate in my dosing but cant seem to dial everything in. I doubled the dosing of everything a while ago because I thought it was the limiting factor for the reasons above. If you are still reading and can help me out that would be hugely appreciated.
Additional notes- I do have koralia power head for some extra circulation. I currently have 4 zebra loaches and 3 amano shrimp, all doing very well. I feed blood worms 3-4 times a week and am trying to get the loaches to take some hikari pellets. I throw in 3 sinking wafers on the days I do not feed blood worms. The hikari wafer feeding has only begun recently as I only got the wafers two weekends ago.