Zapins that was an interesting experiment. That was interesting but from my experience more CO2 usually grew more BBA like others say as well.
I agree with Mistergreen that its the fluctuation that causes spore release & new growth. Thats why I said & will say it again that CO2 is involved , but IMO its the trigger, not the complete fuel source . BBA may have many nutrients that it really uses but I speculate like others that there is a group of compounds specific to fuel the growth organic in nature. What they are we may find out if enough samples are run through the analyzer.
I believe that's why people see new BBA growths after water changes in low tech set ups. I stole that line from Tom but it makes sense. However that ph swing & CO2 surge promotes BBA because other conditions are right for growth. The surge is usually so great tn low tech tanks after non degassed water is used that only the most well maintained systems could defend BBA from growing. I had a basic experimental 10 gallon low tech with cheap lighting low to moderate bio mass growing & when I started doing big water changes not degassed plus adding stronger lighting at the same time BBA grew immediately. Since it grew I added DIY CO2 which helped lower the levels of BBA & I planted more stems as the tank evolved. I dosed EI than added pressurized with an internal reactor & the BBA decreased more but persisted on tank walls & mostly filter parts & the slowest growing or dying leaves.
Now I am at the point a year later & until recently the tank always had a small to moderate problem with BBA but mostly resolved with a slight weekly trim of a few leaves or a stem or two & it looked pretty good. But in the last few weeks I decided to get more aggressive & target organics so I added more filtration & surface agitation & like I said more filter cleaning & water changes not degassed unless I make it after lights out when the tank becomes more alkaline to keep ph & CO2 more stable have I seen much more improvement.
The tank that gets aeration at night which had a worse problem that has fish in it now is doing much better with the BBA. Now in this case the tank moves a full unit from ( 6.6, 6.7-- 7.4-7.6) range in about 4 hours or less. Yet BBA is now struggling to stay alive! The water also looks clearer even though I have not increased water changes. Why , I always felt that tanks water since having BBA growing was not perfectly clear, almost like I could see the organics. Now its crystal clear after aeration at night . Maybe an increase in filter bacteria & the bacteria can do their job better with more alkaline oxygenated water???
Mistergreen said his dirt tanks have high DOC's & no BBA? Well the stable ph & CO2 maybe saving you & or the DOC's that are in your substrate may not be the correct fuel source or correct group of compounds that it prefers . Speculation of course . Also even more important maybe that tank is actually better oxygenated & or alkaline which is better for the filter bacteria. And do you use aged water??? That would be huge because that would degas the water which would keep CO2 more stable.
You would think that lower levels of CO2 would be needed for lower light systems & those tanks still get BBA so that in part would indicate unstable CO2 & or poor flow, & of course high organic nutrient loads from dirty filters & dirty substrate. That could be my issue since I do not run high lights . Besides from high organics I really believe in CO2 tanks that gas stability is critical because unless you have a well maintained sump or very clean canisters if the CO2 becomes unstable during the photo period or beyond could be a BBA producer!
Sorry for the ramble but feel this is important as well. I did as mentioned from was it Zapins? keeping the CO2 stable constantly , I tried that but with out a controller , running a reactor on a timer I kept the CO2 as stable as possible even at night & the BBA grew as usual? I believe stability acid wise is counterproductive especially at night ! Why,bad for the filter bacteria. Thats why I decided to aerate at night an noticed BBA backing down!
Thanks Zorfox for the article , I shall have fun digesting it. Looks really good.