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I have done something dumb. (Scuds)

9287 Views 8 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  gerdescm
I have a little 10 gallon planted tank setup I have been trying to get established for a few months now. I have had a verity of issues such as 95% all the plants I have ordered online took so long in shipping nothing sprouted :/

Anyway I started having an outbreak of Break, Black, Red (not sure which) hair algae. I have tried some of the standard methods, water changes, less light, removal even tried a flag fish. I should have been more patient and continued with these methods.

Instead, I had read that Scuds (Gammarus) like to eat hair algae, I had some at home so I optimistically threw some in before researching further (usually not so impulsive) Then upon further reading I found probably 4-5 out of 6 say scuds will destroy the tank and 1-2 out of 6 saying that they are good.

Seeing as I just added them (I don’t think any where berried) what is the best solution to rid myself of them? Should I tear everything apart or is it not that serious? I believe I added roughly 10-12.

Any Advice would be wonderful, Thanks!

P.S. Maybe it was my imagination but it looked like there was quite a bit less hair algae this morning.
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if you have BBA you NEED to kill it first before any herbivores will take care of it. kill it by spot treating it with excel or peroxide (use 1mL per 10 gals of water to be safe). turn off your pumps while doing so for 15-20 mins.
after its dead it will turn reddish and the next night its usually all eaten by fish or inverts.

scuds are ok. if you have fish, they will over time eat them. especially if you have predators like apistos, rams, etc. i think catfish can eat them at night too. they are decent sources of live food for fish.
I heard of (spot) treating but what do you mean exactly, Like take a turkey baster and squirt it at the algae? I have Excel and I have been putting in about .6ml every 2 days.

The idea I had for the tank was. Plants Celestial Pearl Danios and couple species of Dwarf Shrimp. I also have a couple ottos and Mini moth cat fish (took out the flag fish) So I would like to avoid predators that would go after shimplets :/

The scuds were for feeding a 75 gallon tank I have.
you need to use a syringe. if you already have shrimp in here than you'll have to live with the scuds.
How much do you use on each spot when spot treating? Do you usualy dilute it, like a 1/10 ratio or 100% on the area you want to kill? There is a lot of area to try to cover with only 1ml to work with.
spot treating involves turning off all sources of circulation and slowly squirting the excel onto the algae you want to kill. let it sit there for about about ten to twenty minutes and then turn your filter/pumps back on. there arent too many fish that will eat bba. flag fish will eat it live, but only if they have absolutely nothing else. i have never found hair algae in the stomaches of wild caught flagfish, so i dont believe it is a natural part of their diet. i have never even seen BBA in the wild where they live... only long stringy types of algae. in a tank i have seen them eat BBA. the evidence is tufts of algae floating around that look red, just as they would if you killed it with excel. they didnt eat much of it though.

the only animal i know of that will usually eat BBA is the siamese algae eater. they arent that great at eating hair algae, but they love to graze on BBA. for hair algae... you just have to nuke it. even drying it out doesnt really work, since it reduces to spores and will come right back after you wet it again. same for BBA.

as for the scuds, i cant think of anything you can do to get rid of them that wont kill the shrimp. if you get absolutely disgusted with them, you can pull the shrimp and dry the tank. all your plants would need to go into a plastic bag and get a CO2 treatment, where you pump CO2 into the bag with them, seal it without water, and let it sit for a couple hours. some of it may melt, but you will kill anything crawling on them.

if you choose to try the tank at any point, be sure to dry the substrate completely. i have collected several strains of scuds from dirt that was moist, but never from dirt that was completely dry.
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almost forgot, the excel is used at full strength. if you want to prepare a dip, you can set up a bowl with 1 part excel and 5 parts water. a two minute dip should be enough to kill the algae on the plant without damaging the plant too much. you have to pull the plant out of the tank for that.

i added scuds to my planted tank. i also added copepods, ostracods, dero worms, snails, blackworms, fairy shrimp, daphnia, moina, and hair algae... all of which i collected and cultured(except the fairy shrimp).
i set up a "special" tank. :)
Thanks! The spot treating is working great. I mix about it about 50/50 with water so I can spread the excel out to more spots and that seems to be working well so far.


"i added scuds to my planted tank. i also added copepods, ostracods, dero worms, snails, blackworms, fairy shrimp, daphnia, moina, and hair algae... all of which i collected and cultured(except the fairy shrimp).
i set up a "special" tank."

Do you have a journal about this tank, I was thinking it would be nice to add more micro fauna to the tank to help the ecosystem, I do have some CPD's in the tank. Do you have any predators or just whats listed. How do they effect the plants?
Question: Excel can kill shrimp. Did you have any issues with your shrimp and using liquid CO2?

I'm facing the same issue and wanted to see if your shrimp were safe with it before I tried this approach.
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