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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I posted this in one of my threads in the plant sub forum but didn't get any response. I figured this was the right place to ask. Any help would be appreciated.

I am starting to get a little bit of an algae outbreak and wanted to nip it in the butt. I have had a little bit of what i believe is a hair algae issue on from of the slower growing micro sword leaves (the ones that were damaged from too little light, not dead leaves just slow growing ones. All new growth is algae free). I figured since it was not effecting the new growth i would let it run it's course. Last night i upgraded my CO2 injection and increased flow inside the aguarium with a powerhead. I noticed on one of the rocks there was the slightest bit of algae, when i woke up this morning there was a much larger area of algae on the rock and the sand in my aquarium had started sprouting patches. As fast as this stuff developed i figured i should fix it quick. The only changes i have made recently are a shorter photoperiod (8 vs 12) and increasing CO2. Ammonia-0PPM, pH-7.0, nitrite 0-PPM, nitrate 160+ppm. I am due for a water change tomorrow (bi-weekly) and wanted to know what i could do to kill it while i am in there. Here are a couple pictures. Thanks in advance.








Update. I did a MASSIVE water change last night, borderline flush. The water was crystal clear for about 2 hours and then became cloudy again.

 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thank you for the reply. I picked up some filter floss and i am going to change it tonight. Just out of curiosity, why is the high nitrate level causing the cloudy water? I would like to understand it.
 

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So your experience is that the algae exploded overnight.

If you really have such high Nitrate (160+) you need to reduce it for sure. The question is how low do you want it so if algae decides to show up again you can easily supress it.

I do not know if you understand but this is leading into a very controversial area of discussion. Many people in the US maintain a constant excess of nutrients in the water. Even 3 ppm of Nitrate is already excessive. I am not aiming at starting another argument. You decide what is best for your tank.

Look at the following tanks. They are maintained by adding liquid ferilizers to the water on a daily basis. But the amounts are minor. Click on each picture for details. A water test will show zero N or P. You decide if algae has a chance in such a tank:
http://bubblesaquarium.com/Aquascape/Aquascape_Gallery2010.htm
http://bubblesaquarium.com/Aquascape/Aquascape_Gallery2009.htm
http://bubblesaquarium.com/Aquascape/Aquascape_Gallery2008.htm
http://bubblesaquarium.com/Aquascape/Aquascape_Gallery2007.htm

You can find more examples of tanks maintained in such a way by image googling "ADA Amano", "ADG aquarium", or "Oliver Knott".

And also - your water getting milky like that is most likely a bacteria bloom. This is one of the most frustrating issues you can get. No amount of active maintenance takes care of it. Your efforts have short-lived results and the problem shows up again. Basically your biofilter needs to stabilize. Often the best approach is to just let the tank be for a few weeks. This situation is not fun and I hope I am wrong about your tank having a bacteria bloom. Good luck.
 

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Are you using pressurized CO2 or DIY CO2? Sounds more like pressurized as you could increase it but have to ask. DIY CO2 gas can be dirty and get into the tank and have a good time clouding up the water.

This is the just cycled tank, right? I would assume high levels of nitrate would be present in a tank cycled with ammonia. What is the nitrate level now after the water change? Look up Diana's posts on cycling a tank with ammonia, she does a great job of explaining this. I think you have to do water changes to bring the level down and you need to put the fish in now or you will lose a lot of the bacteria.

Better tell the whole story here for some good advice.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
So your experience is that the algae exploded overnight.

If you really have such high Nitrate (160+) you need to reduce it for sure. The question is how low do you want it so if algae decides to show up again you can easily supress it.

I do not know if you understand but this is leading into a very controversial area of discussion. Many people in the US maintain a constant excess of nutrients in the water. Even 3 ppm of Nitrate is already excessive. I am not aiming at starting another argument. You decide what is best for your tank.

Look at the following tanks. They are maintained by adding liquid ferilizers to the water on a daily basis. But the amounts are minor. Click on each picture for details. A water test will show zero N or P. You decide if algae has a chance in such a tank:
http://bubblesaquarium.com/Aquascape/Aquascape_Gallery2010.htm
http://bubblesaquarium.com/Aquascape/Aquascape_Gallery2009.htm
http://bubblesaquarium.com/Aquascape/Aquascape_Gallery2008.htm
http://bubblesaquarium.com/Aquascape/Aquascape_Gallery2007.htm

You can find more examples of tanks maintained in such a way by image googling "ADA Amano", "ADG aquarium", or "Oliver Knott".

And also - your water getting milky like that is most likely a bacteria bloom. This is one of the most frustrating issues you can get. No amount of active maintenance takes care of it. Your efforts have short-lived results and the problem shows up again. Basically your biofilter needs to stabilize. Often the best approach is to just let the tank be for a few weeks. This situation is not fun and I hope I am wrong about your tank having a bacteria bloom. Good luck.

Thank you for your reply! The reason my nitrates were so high is that i was doing a fishless cycle on the tank by adding ammonia. I had done several small water changes during the cycle and everything was looking good. I could dose up to 4ppm ammonia and within 24 hours ammonia and nitrite levels were 0 while nitrate levels were high (as to be expected from what i understand). The tank started to get cloudy and sprout algae toward the end of the cycle. I decided (probably wrongly) to do several MASSIVE water changes and add Acurel F. I think i may have killed the beneficial bacteria. I checked the parameters this morning and ammonia, nitrites, and nitrates were all high. The pH had also crashed (maybe too much C02). I think i took things a little too fast and made a few mistakes. I picked up some Seachem Matrix that i put in the HOB filter so i could replace the filters without removing all of the bacteria. I am going to replace the filters and recycle the tank doing more water changes and keeping the nitrates in check. Any other advise would be greatly appreciated!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Are you using pressurized CO2 or DIY CO2? Sounds more like pressurized as you could increase it but have to ask. DIY CO2 gas can be dirty and get into the tank and have a good time clouding up the water.

This is the just cycled tank, right? I would assume high levels of nitrate would be present in a tank cycled with ammonia. What is the nitrate level now after the water change? Look up Diana's posts on cycling a tank with ammonia, she does a great job of explaining this. I think you have to do water changes to bring the level down and you need to put the fish in now or you will lose a lot of the bacteria.

Better tell the whole story here for some good advice.
You posted while i was typing but you guessed right :smile:.

It is a DIY CO2 and i adjusted it by hooking and unhooking multiple bottles. I have it run to the inlet of a 260gph powerhead and it seems like it works really well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Are you using pressurized CO2 or DIY CO2? Sounds more like pressurized as you could increase it but have to ask. DIY CO2 gas can be dirty and get into the tank and have a good time clouding up the water.

This is the just cycled tank, right? I would assume high levels of nitrate would be present in a tank cycled with ammonia. What is the nitrate level now after the water change? Look up Diana's posts on cycling a tank with ammonia, she does a great job of explaining this. I think you have to do water changes to bring the level down and you need to put the fish in now or you will lose a lot of the bacteria.

Better tell the whole story here for some good advice.

One more thing. I failed to mention. I didn't even think about it until just now while i was watching my tank. The algae is continuing to spread on the substrate but only in one area. It is a dirted tank and the area where the cap is the thinnest seems to be the main focal point. Is it possible the dirt is leaching an excessive amount of nutrients in that area. I did several water changes, lowered the photo period, and left the tank alone (no changes to CO2, no ferts for now). The algae is still spreading. I don't want it to get out of control. I am considering algaefix but i know that won't address the underlying cause. Nothing i have done is slowing it down and i fear if i wait too long it will be much harder to get under control. I have also changed the filters several times and am still having a bit of a yellowish water condition. Any suggestions?


TIA
Allen
 
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