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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
36g tank
Fluval 306 canister filter
Fluval 24" Fresh & Plant 2.0 LED light (running at about 75% 8 hours a day)
Excel @ 3ml Tue, Thur, Sat
Flourish Comp @ 2.5ml Thur, Sun
Ammonia, nitrate, nitrite all at 0
PH 7.8
6 rumynose tetra
6 black phantom tetra
3 albino cory cats

The first picture shows my tank one month ago. We had a small amount of hair algae, but overall I was very happy with the tank. Things have changed in the last 30 days as shown by the other 2 pictures. The only change I made was to remove the Purigen packet from my filter and add a second dosing of Flourish Comp. My LFS made the suggestion on the Purigen saying it was keeping the water "too clean". My tank has been running since January and all of my water readings have always been "0".

I'm just wondering if anything I'm doing is causing issues. Since things have been relatively algae free I'm a little confused. Could this be caused by the extra dosing of Flourish Comp?

Thanks for any help you can provide.





 

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You should never have zero Nitrates in a planted tank (which is likely to cause hair algae in my experience). Do you know where your Phosphate is at? You also probably want to lower the photoperiod to 6hrs, then increase once you get your algae under control. Some believe that excess nutrients can cause algae issues, but with zero N, that probably isn't your problem. Are you using any Excel or running any CO2? I'm not experienced with LED lights, so hopefully someone else can chime in any tell you whether you are using too much light for what appears to be (from the info given), a fairly low tech tank.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
skelley, thanks for the reply. I have no idea what my phosphate level is. I see that API makes a test kit so I will pick that up to get an idea. I am dosing Excel on Tue, Thur and Sat at the amount recommended on the bottle. I will also start playing around with the amount of time the lights are on. Thanks again!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I finally got my test kit in and the phosphate is zero (or maybe 0.25).
I'm going to start dosing Activate and Synthesis.
I have lowered my light levels to 6 hours also.
Hopefully, one of these things helps with the hair algae.
Thanks.
 

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I think 8 hours a day with the lighting you have is a good starting point. The green hair like algae mostly seen on the driftwood I believe is cladophora. Others list the main cause for this as low nutrient and co2 levels. The other brown algae on the leaves are diatom algae. I've found this algae to be inevitable in a new tank setup.
Which I think is exactly what is occurring here. These are just phases everyone goes through until the filter and substrate have fully matured (6 months or so) and will mostly clear up on their own.

Things you can do now... Physically remove as much of the thread algae as you can with a toothbrush. Or you can mix 1:3 excel and distilled dechlorinated water into a spray bottle. When you do your next water change spray directly on the areas affected and that are exposed to air. Wait 15 min and then continue water change as usual. You will know the algae is dying with the threads turn white.

You can also add a couple of zebra nerite snails which are fantastic algae eaters. They will not breed in your tank but they will leave behind eggs attached to rocks/driftwood. These eggs just look like little white dots and are harmless but can be scrapped off whatever surface they've attached to if it bothers you. Also a couple of dwarf oto fish will make quick work of any algae covering any leaf surface.

The one thing I would definitely change in your regime is your excel dosing. This product is what provides co2 to your plants. I would increase the dose to 3.6 ml d a i l y. Though seachem states that it remains stable in the water column for up to 24 hrs it is probably best to dose just before lights come on.

I have good results in my low tech (no co2 injection, hardy plants, med lighting) using Flourish Comprehensive 1 to 2 times a week (I sometimes forget) and Flourish Trace, Flourish Iron, and Flourish Excel daily.

Seachem also makes Bottled Macro fertilizers : Flourish Nitrogen, Flourish Phosphorus, and Flourish Pottasium which I also use but only in the tanks in which I'm injecting co2
 

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I bought an RO unit for my shrimp tanks. I lowered the tds to below 200 for them....
I started tossing RO water (combined with tap) into my planted tanks. algae growth slowed significantly as I lowered tds.....
I still dose and use xl on a weekly basis.....
 

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What has worked for me,is putting my lights on a cheap timer,and using a siesta.I usually have the lights on for 3 or 4 hrs,then off for 3-4,then back on.the timer keeps it consistent,and you can decrease or increase the times according to algae growth.

I really like the 6 dollar timers you can get at the hardware or box store.I tried a corallife outlet strip that has a built in timer,but it failed after a very short time.
 
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