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Amy
Advanced Member
Username: amy

Post Number: 1017
Registered: 04-2003
Posted on Thursday, February 09, 2006 - 06:44 pm:       

I have a 3-week-old 29 gallon tank with brown algae everywhere. I took the gravel and plants -- val, crypt(?), 2 moss balls, anubias, java fern, water sprite (or similar), java moss -- from the 10-gallon I was upgrading from, as well as the biowheel that I'd had floating in the tank for a week or so. tank looked great for a week or 2, then started growing brown algae everywhere. would that be because of too high lighting (eclipse hood upgraded to a 55-watt power compact), or as a result of cycling? I no longer have a test kit...

inhabitants are 4 yoyo loaches, 2 female bettas, and an amano shrimp that surprisingly the yoyos don't bother. I guess because he's almost as big as they are.

suggestions? I didn't have the light on today in case that's the beginning of clearing it up...
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cindy
Ancient Plus
Username: cindy

Post Number: 9066
Registered: 05-2003
Posted on Thursday, February 09, 2006 - 07:36 pm:       

Neither. Well, sort of the second one. It's because it's a new tank. A couple otos or a BN'll take care of it.

"The only ones among you who will be really happy are those who will have sought and found how to serve." --- Albert Schweitzer

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Erin
Advanced Member
Username: emc2

Post Number: 1033
Registered: 04-2004
Posted on Thursday, February 09, 2006 - 07:53 pm:       

Sounds like diatomes Amy. Ride it out.
Member of Delaware Valley Aquatic Gardener's Association (www.dvaga.com)
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Amy
Advanced Member
Username: amy

Post Number: 1018
Registered: 04-2003
Posted on Thursday, February 09, 2006 - 08:07 pm:       

I also just added a bubbler in case that will help... so it will eventually go away on it's own?

by BN, I assume you mean a bristlenose pleco? how big do they get? I lost an oto when doing the transfer. I had it in the 10g, transferred everything to the 29g, except I forgot about him until the middle of the night, and couldn't find him in the morning... or maybe he was gone beforehand, but I don't think so...

so you don't think the lighting is too high?
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Erin
Moderator
Username: shay

Post Number: 980
Registered: 04-2004
Posted on Thursday, February 09, 2006 - 08:53 pm:       

No. I don't think the lighting is too high. I think its a new tank in break in period.

BN is Bristlenose. A BN would clean up the diatomes quickly.
Member of Delaware Valley Aquatic Gardener's Association (www.dvaga.com)
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Amy
Advanced Member
Username: amy

Post Number: 1019
Registered: 04-2003
Posted on Thursday, February 09, 2006 - 08:59 pm:       

would a BN be better than a few otos? would it get too big?

I know the otos don't tend to hide...
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cindy
Ancient Plus
Username: cindy

Post Number: 9068
Registered: 05-2003
Posted on Friday, February 10, 2006 - 12:37 am:       

I should have said a BN now or a couple of otos later - after you are cycled.

"The only ones among you who will be really happy are those who will have sought and found how to serve." --- Albert Schweitzer

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Amy
Advanced Member
Username: amy

Post Number: 1020
Registered: 04-2003
Posted on Friday, February 10, 2006 - 07:44 pm:       

will a BN grow too large for a 12" x 30" tank?

I called the lfs - they're not cheap...
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cindy
Ancient Plus
Username: cindy

Post Number: 9076
Registered: 05-2003
Posted on Friday, February 10, 2006 - 10:28 pm:       

A 29 is fine.

I've seen them in the LFS as high as $16 here, and as low as $7. I've also seen homegrown juvies at the local aquarium club for $5. Check yours out.

"The only ones among you who will be really happy are those who will have sought and found how to serve." --- Albert Schweitzer

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Amy
Advanced Member
Username: amy

Post Number: 1021
Registered: 04-2003
Posted on Saturday, February 11, 2006 - 08:43 pm:       

if the stuff has actually created enough slime around the plants that they can trap bubbles within it and the plants are dying, should I be trimming them off?
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Erin
Moderator
Username: shay

Post Number: 983
Registered: 04-2004
Posted on Sunday, February 12, 2006 - 07:14 am:       

Yes. Trim the leaves. Can you take some photographs? Are you scrubbing the stuff off during your weekly water changes or are you assuming the tank is cycling? Get a test kit.
Member of Delaware Valley Aquatic Gardener's Association (www.dvaga.com)
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Amy
Advanced Member
Username: amy

Post Number: 1022
Registered: 04-2003
Posted on Sunday, February 12, 2006 - 09:24 am:       

I have a feeling it is that the light is too strong - I just scrubbed the glass in prepearation for a water change and discovered that the underside of the moss balls and the cave are pefectly normal looking...
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Amy
Advanced Member
Username: amy

Post Number: 1023
Registered: 04-2003
Posted on Thursday, February 16, 2006 - 09:19 am:       

so is it likely to clear up on its own with time? or do I need to do something else? I added 4 baby otos...
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Matt
Junior Member
Username: squirrel_guy

Post Number: 83
Registered: 12-2005
Posted on Friday, February 17, 2006 - 12:24 pm:       

I had a diatom problem when I was without an algae-eating fish (pleco or otto). The plants and glass in my 37-gallon were practically covered; I could wipe off the sword leaves with cotton and they'd be covered again the next day. I got a little pleco (like 2 inches at the most) before I left for a weekend. The little guy pretty much eradicated it within 3 days, they love the stuff that much!
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Amy
Advanced Member
Username: amy

Post Number: 1024
Registered: 04-2003
Posted on Friday, February 17, 2006 - 07:01 pm:       

this is slimy hairy stuff... not just brown dots of the glass...

at least the otos seems to be helping with the smooth surfaces -- I can read the thermometer again!
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Amy
Advanced Member
Username: amy

Post Number: 1025
Registered: 04-2003
Posted on Sunday, February 19, 2006 - 09:17 am:       

I finally got some photos:

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v216/a2kelley/algae005.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v216/a2kelley/algae009.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v216/a2kelley/algae008.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v216/a2kelley/algae007.jpg
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Jeff Lefkowitz
Regular Member
Username: jeffedl

Post Number: 178
Registered: 01-2005
Posted on Sunday, February 19, 2006 - 09:41 am:       

This link might help figure out what kind it is, since its seeming less likely to be diatoms.
http://www.aquaticscape.com/articles/algae.htm

On another branch though, how did you upgrade the Eclipse? I have Eclipse hoods, and would love to upgrade!
"Peter, the fish did not bite you through the glass"
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Amy
Advanced Member
Username: amy

Post Number: 1026
Registered: 04-2003
Posted on Sunday, February 19, 2006 - 01:48 pm:       

hubby took a water sample him to the lfs to be tested and the told him the tank is cycled...

Jeff, according to that site, I'd guess it to be beard algae, but it's not green...

I bought the hood used with the PC lighting upgrade already done. I may be talked into selling it to you (or trading it for 2 regular eclipse 3 hoods if you have them, or one plus some cash) if the upgraded light turns to to be the problem with my tank. or maybe I need to add c02, which I'm not going to get into... apparently the upgrade is also good for reefs...

it's a smartlite retrofit: http://foryourfish.com/cgi-bin/webc.cgi/FYF-L-PCRFK1.htm
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Erin
Moderator
Username: shay

Post Number: 992
Registered: 04-2004
Posted on Sunday, February 19, 2006 - 06:25 pm:       

I'm sticking with diatoms. Amy, this is not your first tank. Haven't you seen this before?

I have not located a photograph of diatoms (other than yours) in a FW tank but here is a link to diatoms in a SW set-up.

http://saltaquarium.about.com/cs/algaecontrol/l/blpicalgaediato.htm

Look familiar?

Here's some reading material I snagged from another site.

Diatoms
Common Name(s): Brown Algae
Algae Description: Few objects are more beautiful than the minute siliceous cases of the diatomacaea...Charles Darwin

Although diatoms are commonly (and mistakenly) referred to as brown algae, their closest relatives are golden algae. The skeleton (cell walls) of a diatom is made of hydrated silica embedded in an organic matrix. Each wall is composed of two halves that fit together like a shoe box and lid. Some diatoms can move around by squirting stuff out of slits in their cell walls. There are about 10,000 known diatom species.

The photosynthetic pigment of diatoms is brown. In the summer waters of a healthy pond, diatoms can grow to such numbers that submerged plants can have the appearance of being covered with a brown mud which the microscope reveals as a dense growth consisting entirely of diatoms.

Source: Chuck Huffine on APD 10/01
How to Treat: The most common myth about diatoms is that they are caused by a certain light level (some say low, others high) or just old bulbs. In my experience, diatoms grow in all light levels from low to high whether the bulb is old or not. Diatoms, like all algae plagues, are invariably caused and sustained by excess nutrients in the water column. As Kevin has already pointed out, silica is the most important of these in the case of diatoms. However, removing silica, which can cost serious $$$, is not necessarily the best method for tackling diatom infestations.

IME, the two best solutions for diatom control are Otocinclus catfish or simply waiting them out. A half-dozen healthy otos will clear a medium-sized tank (~55 gallon) in a few days and keep it clean
after. Waiting the diatoms out means scraping them from tank surfaces and letting the filter and water changes remove them from the water column which removes both the diatoms and consequently silica (and other consumed nutrients) from the tank water. Eventually, the plague will peak and then fade away rather quickly. For the impatient, there are silica removal resins that will take the silica out of water, but they can be a pain and are not cost effective. Or you could use a reverse osmosis filter to remove practically all minerals from tap water, but RO can cause as many problems as it cures in some cases and it is certainly expensive both in time and money.

At least one study have shown that diatoms store phosphate in sufficient quantities to provide for 100 subsequent generations.

Source: Chuck Huffine on APD 10/01
Member of Delaware Valley Aquatic Gardener's Association (www.dvaga.com)
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Amy
Advanced Member
Username: amy

Post Number: 1028
Registered: 04-2003
Posted on Sunday, February 19, 2006 - 06:46 pm:       

I believe I've had the brown diatoms before, and the otos are working at it in this tank, but what's the longer fuzzy-slimy stuff all over the other surfaces, including the plants?
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cindy
Ancient Plus
Username: cindy

Post Number: 9222
Registered: 05-2003
Posted on Monday, February 20, 2006 - 12:04 am:       

Probably diatoms...growing on bio-film. It's usually clearish, but can be green or brown if algae or diatoms coat it, instead of (or in addition to) the glass and decorations.

"The only ones among you who will be really happy are those who will have sought and found how to serve." --- Albert Schweitzer

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Amy
Advanced Member
Username: amy

Post Number: 1029
Registered: 04-2003
Posted on Monday, February 20, 2006 - 08:28 am:       

bio-film? how do I get rid of it? to trim it off, I'd pretty much need to take everything out of the tank completely...
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cindy
Ancient Plus
Username: cindy

Post Number: 9229
Registered: 05-2003
Posted on Monday, February 20, 2006 - 09:03 am:       

Never mind, if it were biofilm, it would wipe off easily with a paper towel or clean washcloth, whether in the tank or out.

"The only ones among you who will be really happy are those who will have sought and found how to serve." --- Albert Schweitzer

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Amy
Advanced Member
Username: amy

Post Number: 1030
Registered: 04-2003
Posted on Monday, February 20, 2006 - 10:15 am:       

it does look like the otos are making very slow progress on it, unless it's my imagination...
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Brad
Advanced Member
Username: brad

Post Number: 1610
Registered: 03-2005
Posted on Monday, February 20, 2006 - 11:32 am:       

Amy, I`m going to ring in just to say that IMO (not that it matters) is that these girls have hit the nail right on the head. a 55 watt over 29 gallons gives you about 1.9 wpg. Your lighting is not wht`s causing the problem unless you`re really slacking on the ferts.

I have this same algae in my ten gallon and all I have is 2 screw in compacts. It`s just a shrimp tank and sometimes, when I can`t sell my fry, they go there. As 3rd on the list, it doesn`t get cleaned much. Once I decided to clean up the algae, I trimmed as much as I could.(Yup some plants got tossed, others got moved to my emmersed setup) and I kept it clean. the algae in your pics didn`t grow in 1 day. If you need to trim and clean every other day until it gives up, so be it, but you need to remove it as often as possible. An algae eating crew will help. Other than that, it`s just clean, trim, and fertilize, clean, trim and fertilize.

If you think it`s brush algae or staghorn, the same applies. Tanks aren`t much different than flowerbeds. You need to do what you can to help the plants you want, and remove what you don`t want.
Ever feel like you`re flying and drowning at the same time?
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Amy
Advanced Member
Username: amy

Post Number: 1031
Registered: 04-2003
Posted on Monday, February 20, 2006 - 06:03 pm:       

I don't use any fertilizer. these are the same plants I had in other tanks ands didn't have this problem. maybe because this tank hasn't gotten a lot of mulm yet in the gravel?
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Amy
Advanced Member
Username: amy

Post Number: 1032
Registered: 04-2003
Posted on Saturday, February 25, 2006 - 10:07 am:       

should I try the 10% (or whatever % it was) bleach routine? or would taking out the plants and cave and bleaching them not do any good if I didn't also take out the gravel?
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larry
Regular Member
Username: gomezaddams

Post Number: 655
Registered: 05-2005
Posted on Sunday, February 26, 2006 - 12:17 am:       

AAk bleach?you could try a bazooka that would get rid of it.
Serously pleco or oto and time is all you need.
Waiting will fill
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Amy
Advanced Member
Username: amy

Post Number: 1033
Registered: 04-2003
Posted on Friday, March 03, 2006 - 06:45 pm:       

okay, last weekend I mixed up a bucket of 1 part bleach to 19 parts water. I had another bucket of declorinated water nearby. I took out the plants(and the cave), a few at a time, and held them (but not their roots) in the bleach water for about 1-1/2 minutes. then I soaked them in the dechlorinated water, then changed it and did it again. it ended out that at least half of the plants were dead anyway, literally falling apart while I was trying to rub a bit of the slime off. I put everything back in the tank and added fertilizer tabs under the major plants. now I have white fuzzy beard algae that's still getting worse, and the stuff on the gravel that I didn't bleach is growing more.

I'm tempted to take out the filter cartridge and biowheel, move the inhabitants to another tank, and do something more drastic to the tank... but what?

I haven't come across a bn pleco for less than $10 yet...
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Jerry Carter
Junior Member
Username: jerry_c

Post Number: 92
Registered: 05-2005
Posted on Saturday, March 04, 2006 - 02:02 pm:       

10dollars is a small price to keep your tank looking great long term... The bristlnose in my expierences will do the work of a 100 Otto,s.. and will do the work in short order. A BN gets to be no bigger then 6 inches if that and it will take a long time before it ever gets that big ... and they look great in any aqurium in my oppinion.. Good Luck
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Amy
Advanced Member
Username: amy

Post Number: 1034
Registered: 04-2003
Posted on Saturday, March 04, 2006 - 02:29 pm:       

yeah, and maybe move the otos into the tank below it that's now getting brown diatoms... it's cycling...
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Amy
Advanced Member
Username: amy

Post Number: 1042
Registered: 04-2003


Posted on Thursday, March 16, 2006 - 06:17 pm:       

still haven't decided what type of algae it is.

here's more photos. I don't really think it looks like any of the ones in links given to me...

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v216/a2kelley/algae005.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v216/a2kelley/algae006.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v216/a2kelley/algae004.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v216/a2kelley/algae003.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v216/a2kelley/algae007.jpg
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Erin
Moderator
Username: shay

Post Number: 1016
Registered: 04-2004


Posted on Thursday, March 16, 2006 - 09:34 pm:       

There thousands of species of algae Amy. It looks like you have several of them. I don't think the advice you have been given will change much if we specifically identify the algae.
Member of Delaware Valley Aquatic Gardener's Association (www.dvaga.com)
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Amy
Advanced Member
Username: amy

Post Number: 1043
Registered: 04-2003


Posted on Thursday, March 16, 2006 - 09:39 pm:       

just don't know what to do about it...

started this thread and still don't know:

http://badmanstropicalfish.com/discus/messages/18/55049.html?1142392629
Badman's Tropical Fish - Archives * Live Plants * Brown algae everywhere...       

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