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Hair algae/general next best step question

1063 Views 1 Reply 2 Participants Last post by  bsmith
Hi all -

apologies for asking a question that's probably been asked a bunch of times but i'm at a loss for what my next best step is.

I have a 10 gallon tank, been set up for about 7 weeks, and stocked for about 3 weeks with 3 scarlett badis and two otos. I have the stock topfin 10 gallon filter with extra sponge stuffed in there (sponge has only been in for about a week). I do 1mL Excel every day or two, and starting last week I'm going to do the standard Fluorish once a week. For lights I have a 14W full spectrum LED (albeit a cheap one). No CO2, as of now.

I have quite a bit of brown hair algae, mainly on driftwood ,but definitely also on plants, and my main question is how do I best proceed, as I've heard and read different things.

- Lights - right now they're on about 8-9 hours a day. I will cut this back to 7ish probably, but for now i'm going to cut it to 4 for a few days before trying to rid the tank of as much algae as I can manually by scrubbing followed by a big water change. Is 7 a good duration for the future? Should I do this 4 day semi-blackout?

- Fertilizers - I've read that too much fertilizer causes algae, and I've read that too little can cause algae. Am I doing too much/too little/an appropriate amount?

- CO2 - I've read that it is the cause of algae (not enough of it), but I've also read it's not as big a factor. Should I start injecting CO2? Not looking to spend a huge ton so I'd go with one of those Fluval 45g kits, anyone know if they're any good? Mixed reviews online.

- As for the plants I currently have in there, most are doing pretty ok, though some of the red leaf plants are getting black in their stems and some leaves are dying off (sorry I don't know all their names, see pictures below). Are these ones lost causes? Should I do a big trim and get rid of any blackened plants?

- The scarlett badis I have are really picky eaters, which I read exactly 10 minutes after I arrived home with them, still mad at myself for not doing enough research. Right now i'm squiring in some frozen brine shrimp every day or two. Not a ton, I scrape some off the top of the frozen thing with scissors into a glass and use a syringe to squirt them in. The problem is, I don't see them eating it very often. They've been alive with me for 2.5 weeks now. Would they already be dead if they weren't eating? Because if they're not eating I assume this shrimp is contributing to my problem.

- If I take the wood out and give it a really deep clean, a) is that worth it and b) will that kill off a substantial amount of the good bacteria to the point it would be detrimental?

- amano shrimp, planning to add like 3-5, will they make a dent in this or will they just kind of help but not fix it?

thanks very much for going through all this to help me out!

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I’ll be honest, I can’t see what you’ve described in the pics. It all looks real good for being 7 weeks old.

In the last two pics all I see are healthy looking plants that are experiencing a little die off. This is unavoidable due to the stresses they’ve experienced traveling from wherever you found them to ending up in your tank.

You’re new to this and from time to time people can get all hyper critical about everything and they start finding problems that aren’t even there. There’s so much new information and exciting things happening it can be a bit if it’s not taken in properly.

It’s like when you have your first kid, if that child dropped their binky on the ground it went straight to the sink. By the time you have your second in that situation you’ll just stick it in your mouth for a second and wipe it off on your sleeve

So take a a deep breath cause unless I’m blind or you’re messing with me your tank looks great man.
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