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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi everyone,

I have 7 day old 20 gallon tank. Specs below:

Ada Amazonia v2
Ada Power Sand
Ada Super 4
SunSun 603B Canister
SunSun ADS 500C Led 12 hours
DIY Citric Acid Co2 1 bubble/sec 10 hours
Aquatrition Starter Fertilizer

Threw in filter mulm from an old established non planted tank twice in the last week.

The tank also has dragon rocks, lava rocks and new driftwood, all of which I boiled for an hour and soaked in a large tub for 2 days before putting them in the tank on day 1.

I setup the tank on day 1, filled with water and let it run for 3 days without plants, lights and Co2. Did 75% water changes everyday.

On the 4th days planted heavily with Montecarlo, rotala rotundifolia high red, rotala rotundifolia ceylon and hemianthus micranthemoides (all TC cups).

The next day (day 5) I noticed a little white film on the driftwood, which was expected. Day 6, the white film started showing up on the Montecarlo. And today, day 7, the Montecarlo and the driftwood are engulfed the white, extremely disgusting, film/algae.

I am concerned that this might suffocate my Montecarlo. The other plants look largely unaffected.

No fish/shrimp in the tank yet. Will let it cycle for a minimum of 4-6 weeks, maybe more.

What should I do about the white film and my precious Montecarlo? I'd hate for them to wither away.

FYI, I've had freshwater tanks for the last 20+, ranging from 10 gallons to 200+ gallons. Although this is my first planted tank.

Help, please.

P.S. I will try to keep updating this thread everyday, till we reach a conclusion.
 

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Hi everyone,

I have 7 day old 20 gallon tank. Specs below:

Ada Amazonia v2
Ada Power Sand
Ada Super 4
SunSun 603B Canister
SunSun ADS 500C Led 12 hours
DIY Citric Acid Co2 1 bubble/sec 10 hours
Aquatrition Starter Fertilizer

Threw in filter mulm from an old established non planted tank twice in the last week.

The tank also has dragon rocks, lava rocks and new driftwood, all of which I boiled for an hour and soaked in a large tub for 2 days before putting them in the tank on day 1.

I setup the tank on day 1, filled with water and let it run for 3 days without plants, lights and Co2. Did 75% water changes everyday.

On the 4th days planted heavily with Montecarlo, rotala rotundifolia high red, rotala rotundifolia ceylon and hemianthus micranthemoides (all TC cups).

The next day (day 5) I noticed a little white film on the driftwood, which was expected. Day 6, the white film started showing up on the Montecarlo. And today, day 7, the Montecarlo and the driftwood are engulfed the white, extremely disgusting, film/algae.

I am concerned that this might suffocate my Montecarlo. The other plants look largely unaffected.

No fish/shrimp in the tank yet. Will let it cycle for a minimum of 4-6 weeks, maybe more.

What should I do about the white film and my precious Montecarlo? I'd hate for them to wither away.

FYI, I've had freshwater tanks for the last 20+, ranging from 10 gallons to 200+ gallons. Although this is my first planted tank.

Help, please.

P.S. I will try to keep updating this thread everyday, till we reach a conclusion.
I have the same thing In my new tank setup. I just use a tooth brush and gently brush off the white film and then water change. It has gone down tremendously over the past few weeks.
 

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Every new planted tank I have ever set up goes through that stage of having that clear-ish mucus like slime, especially on the wood. It has always taken care of itself eventually. I am kind of thinking it clears up after a month or so... but that is also when a tank has cycled and fish are added. I have seen fish like Plecos eat this film so I don't know if it actually goes away of if it is just the tank clean up crew keeping it at bay?

The leaves of most of your plants are going to wilt and it is going to make sense that the slime is suffocating them... but that won't be the case. The plants are going to shed the leaves they came with and start producing new leaves that are better adapted to the conditions in your tank. This is just the natural evolution of a new planted tank. The hardest part of a new tank is PATIENTS! Your tank will go through a few incarnations of slime, wilting plants, diatoms, green algae infestation, etc. before it balances itself and mostly takes care of itself. PATIENTS! :)
 

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There are no white algaes,just fungi. Usually if you have a Pleco or Ancistrus- they will eat that. If not,then maybe the wood is too raw and not nearly inert enough for an aquarium with fish. Usually removing the wood and taking a sniff will convince you to make the decision.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks everyone for your inputs. I will dry to dislodge as much as I can and do a water change later today.

In the meanwhile, the slime has gotten worse in the last 12 hours. Attaching a few photographs, it's worse than it looks.

Should I reduce the hours of light or the Co2?

Thanks again.
 

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I've also gone through this with every brand new set up. You could cut lights back and start with maybe 6 hours. It looks like your driftwood might be a bit new and going through the fungal stage. Honestly I'm going to jump on the bandwagon with manual removal and water changes. I'm still going through start up algae in my cube 3 months in (my own doing). It's sometimes rough at start up but being consistent with manual removal and water changes will be your best tool in dealing with this.
 

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^^^ I completely agree with PlinkPloop, water changes are your best weapon when starting up a new tank... AND maintaining an established tank! The more frequent the better! I have my 180g setup to automatically change 40g of water every morning and the plants love it! (They start pearling imediately after / during the water change).

Since the slime isn't green I do not believe it is photosythentic. So I don't think cutting back light or CO2 will be benificial for this issue. When the hair algae takes hold in a couple of weeks cutting back the light will be benificial to combat it.

I really like pond snails in a new tank that is cycling. They help combat some of the tank startup algae issues like green spot algae. Once they are in a tank they are hard to get rid of... which is fine with me as they are a FANTASTIC clean up crew to maintain a tank. My 180g is full of them but I only see them if I turn the tank light on after it has been dark for an hour or so. They populate in proportion to the food that is available to them so they are kind of self regulating.
 

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^^^ I completely agree with PlinkPloop, water changes are your best weapon when starting up a new tank... AND maintaining an established tank! The more frequent the better! I have my 180g setup to automatically change 40g of water every morning and the plants love it! (They start pearling imediately after / during the water change).

Since the slime isn't green I do not believe it is photosythentic. So I don't think cutting back light or CO2 will be benificial for this issue. When the hair algae takes hold in a couple of weeks cutting back the light will be benificial to combat it.

I really like pond snails in a new tank that is cycling. They help combat some of the tank startup algae issues like green spot algae. Once they are in a tank they are hard to get rid of... which is fine with me as they are a FANTASTIC clean up crew to maintain a tank. My 180g is full of them but I only see them if I turn the tank light on after it has been dark for an hour or so. They populate in proportion to the food that is available to them so they are kind of self regulating.
Snails are my friends too. My experience with them is the same- they also act as an indicator of excess food/ plant waste for me. I never see more than a couple at a time even though I know I'm "infested".
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks for the reply folks. I'm sticking to the water change advice, about 50% a day. The rotalas are doing great, decent growth in the last couple of days. The monte carlo look very sad. I will continue with this schedule and see how this goes.

Thanks again guys.
 

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How does the water smell? If it smells sour,you might have a long wait for the wood to cure. Put in a bristlenose cat or maybe a panda loach. Mollies might eat that..not sure.
This seems to be a new big problem in the hobby. Unseasoned wood with high demand for aquascapes nowadays.
 

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How does the water smell? If it smells sour,you might have a long wait for the wood to cure. Put in a bristlenose cat or maybe a panda loach. Mollies might eat that..not sure.
This seems to be a new big problem in the hobby. Unseasoned wood with high demand for aquascapes nowadays.
I haven't bought any new driftwood in forever and a day but I remember boiling the crap out of my driftwood and soaking it in an aquarium salt mixture for a couple months because that was just what you did back then. I did get a lot of my driftwood from local waterways, though so I suppose I needed the extra precautions (I boiled many a hiding leech and nymph this way).
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Manually cleaned a lot of the white gunk last night. Quite a bit of the monte carlo seems to have melted away, the background plants have grown rather well seems healthy.

The water or the wood doesn't smell sour. No smell at all.

Should I continue to use the liquid fertilisers?
 

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I would continue to use ferts as directed on packaging. MC has a tendency of melting back in new plantings. Remove melted parts but leave the roots at should grow back once it's "settled in".

Sounds like you're just going through the normal woes of start up. I have a few brutally ugly pics of my current start up algae tragedy in my cube journal that might make you feel better lol. Just keep up on maintenance and manual removal and it will get better. Patience may be a virtue but in this hobby it's a necessity. Good luck!!
 

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As others have said this is not really unusual for a new tank with fresh wood, even if it was boiled. Suction the fungus off with your frequent water changes. It will probably not last long.

I will however add that a 12 hour light period with a lightly planted new tank will soon give you a much harder problem with algae. I would cut your photoperiod back as it looks like algae is already beginning.
 

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If there is no smell and it also isnt tinting the water- another sign of wood being too raw- then I think you're in good shape. Time should soon clear up of the white fungus.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Thanks for the replies folks. The white fungus seems to be moving out, albeit slowly.

A new monster is showing up. A light brown, almost cotton like texture is on some of the hemianthus micranthemoides and some more on the dying Montecarlo bases. Help me with what kind of algae this could be, and how I can slow or reverse the growth.

Apart from the Montecarlo, rest of the plants are growing well. When should I do the first trim?

Also, I've cut down the light period from 12 hours to 5 hours. Co2 continues at 1 bubble per second.

Thanks!
 

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Thread algae and diatoms. More normal start up algae. Clean up as much as you can when water changing and keep plugging away. It should work itself out. If you notice plant melt/ dead plant matter just remove them damaged parts and not the roots- this is most likely what you're going to experience next. Good luck!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Thanks Plinkploop. I've taken out most of the green hair algae with a toothbrush.

Should I trim the melted Montecarlo down to the soil? Or should I leave some bits above the soil even if they are melted?

Thanks again.
 

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Thanks Plinkploop. I've taken out most of the green hair algae with a toothbrush.

Should I trim the melted Montecarlo down to the soil? Or should I leave some bits above the soil even if they are melted?

Thanks again.
I'd leave anything green but not anything truly melted. I usually use a turkey baster to suck up what I can for dead matter and get a sense of what might survive and cut everything questionable.
 
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