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bunny
Regular Member
Username: moonbunny

Post Number: 426
Registered: 02-2003
Posted on Thursday, March 09, 2006 - 09:03 pm:       

I love having planted tanks. They're a world apart when it comes to being high functioning and beautiful, but boy do they keep me on my toes!

I'm having a green algae bloom that takes my tank from having clear water to a being green swamp weekly. I've read where reducing the photo peroid and the temp can bring the water back into balance, but I'm wondering how low I can safely go with temp and light exposure. Currently, my temp is 80 deg and the lights (40 watts) are on 12 hrs/day (plus, the tank is by an eastern window.) I'm wondering if going to 75 deg and 10 hrs/day would be enough to get rid of the algae and still be safe for the fish (or if there's a better temp/photo peroid to try.)

Maintence is a 50-60% water change weekly.

Fish are:

1 oto (temp. range 68-82 deg.)
4 platys (temp. range 68-79 deg.)
2 bn plecos (temp. range 72-86 deg.)

Plant-wise I'm medium/heavily planted. Lots of Java, Hygro. polysperma/tropica, Sagitaria and more.

Any tips would be greatly appreciated

Thanks
"There is a natural hootchy-kootchy motion to a goldfish." ~Walt Disney
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bunny
Regular Member
Username: moonbunny

Post Number: 427
Registered: 02-2003
Posted on Friday, March 10, 2006 - 02:31 am:       

It's an algae problem in general. It started with brown diatom algae (which Nila the oto does a pretty good job keeping down, I might get her a friend to help her.)

And then black beard algae--ugly stuff--I've been pinching off affected bits since nobody in the tank wants to eat it. The BBA is really attacking the Hygro and Anacharis--can I dip the badly affected stems in a light bleach solution to nix the BBA? I've tried keeping them in the dark for weeks and that doesn't get rid of it. It seems to proliferate where the plants are nearest the filter uptake/output or where plants are planted too close to each other.

And now the blue/green algae that hangs out in the ambient water. I realize algae is a nutrient-balancing problem, but my levels are coming up 0s. I've read where I should fertilize in small amounts daily to help the plants rally and I've read that packing the tank with stem feeders should do the trick. I've even read that only full-spectrum bulbs should be used and I should turn off the lights for 3-5 hrs in the middle of the day because the algae won't like that.

Short of voodoo dolls, is there a formula for nixing this stuff?

Nila's working her heart out on the brown algae (although mostly the long, broad leaves) and the bn plecos, Ish and Minnie, are trying their best to keep the walls clean of both the brown & green algae, but we're all getting tired. Algae has me feeling like a rank amateur.

Could I have too many fish in the tank? It's a 20 gal. tank with a Penguin 200 and lots of plants. Together they add up to about 14 inches of fish. Would another oto be too much?

These 2 planted tanks are the jewels of the house & the plants exist solely to keep my good little fish healthy and happy.

Any help would be greatly appreciated.
"There is a natural hootchy-kootchy motion to a goldfish." ~Walt Disney
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bunny
Regular Member
Username: moonbunny

Post Number: 428
Registered: 02-2003
Posted on Friday, March 10, 2006 - 06:04 am:       

I found a very good page on I.D.ing types of algae that has links to Krib articles: http://www.aquaticscape.com/articles/algae.htm and, for black brush algae it suggests, among other things, dipping the affected plants in a bleach solution and/or getting either a SAE or shrimp.

I know that SAE's can get up to 6" (so they might not be a solution for a 20 gal.,) but has anyone had success keeping shrimp (esp. with plecos) for black algae control? If so, do ghost shrimp seem to do as well as amano shrimp? Also, do shrimp carry parasites that could be harmful to fish and how do you keep shrimp population in check?

I'm going to dip my plants in the morning (since the tank looks so bare without them.)

Any and all information would *really* be appreciated.

Thanks
"There is a natural hootchy-kootchy motion to a goldfish." ~Walt Disney
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Randy
Regular Member
Username: milesteg

Post Number: 154
Registered: 01-2006
Posted on Friday, March 10, 2006 - 06:24 am:       

Hi,
I am not an expert but I can say that When I had an algae bloom I was running my lights 12-14 hours a day. One of the thing I did was to put a timer with 3 on/off times. So now the total on time is about 11 hours (5-9am , 11am-1pm , 5-10pm ). This seem to help and save electricity and bulb life.

Question for you: What kind of light are you using?
If you go through a day without learning something new, you wasted it!
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bunny
Regular Member
Username: moonbunny

Post Number: 429
Registered: 02-2003
Posted on Friday, March 10, 2006 - 05:50 pm:       

Flourescent--1 GE Chroma 50 bulb and one standard that came with the new fixture. Also, where did you find the extra on/of switches?
"There is a natural hootchy-kootchy motion to a goldfish." ~Walt Disney
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Randy
Regular Member
Username: milesteg

Post Number: 163
Registered: 01-2006


Posted on Monday, March 13, 2006 - 10:15 am:       

I found the switches that I use at The Home Depot.
$10
If you go through a day without learning something new, you wasted it!
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