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Algae control poll



 
 
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  #1  
Old January 19th 05, 10:46 PM
Tony Volk
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Default Algae control poll

Having a fight with BBA and staghorn algae on my hands (nice to find out
they're the same thing- confirm if you can), I'm curious to get a general
poll from the group as to how you've dealt with algae, and how it worked.
It'd be nice to share the different methods and how they've worked as
there's got to be a lot of experience with algae on this newsgroup! Heck,
maybe if we get enough replies I'll post them all up on one general webpage
(or submit to one). I'm especially curious about the general opinion of
blacking out a tank, as that seems cheap, easy, and effective? Let's try to
use a similar format if possible:

Aquarium (all): 55 gallon, heavy fish load, medium plant load, soft water,
~4kH, ~7pH, 75 F, ammonia 0, nitrites 0, nitrates ~30 ppm, 2 HOB filters,
originally OTS

Algae: BBA
Amount: Severe (not catastrophic), covering 20% of tank and 40% plants I'd
say
Effort: reduce OTS nitrate levels from 200ppm+ to ~30ppm, increase kH
Effect: has dramatically slowed the level of BBA, but triggered an explosion
of staghorn on my Vals

Algae: BBA & Staghorn
Amount: moderate-severe
Effort: manually remove it; gently pull on staghorn, using a credit card on
tank walls while siphoning (BBA), leaf trimming
Effect: pretty good for BBA, not so effective for staghorn, I think it
really goes for any sign of weakness in Vals (can it weaken its host?)

Algae: BBA, Staghorn, Hair
Amount: moderate-severe
Effort: add extra plants (Hornwort - 2 big bunches)
Effect: in combination with the other efforts, I'm hoping that the very fast
growing Hornwort will clean up the water, but so far it's having little
effect

Algae: all kinds
Amount: moderate-severe
Effort: Pleco, Otto's, SAE, Flying Fox
Effect: Pleco, at 10", is not surprisingly very effective at cleaning
general green algae (only problem is immense amount of poop!); Otto's and
SAEs (3 and 4 respectively) eat frequently, but don't seem to be able to
reduce levels (maintain them?), SAEs do munch on BBA, FF only green algae on
occasion (primarily fish food)


  #2  
Old January 19th 05, 10:50 PM
Tony Volk
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Posts: n/a
Default

I forgot to add:
2 x 40W GE Plant & Aquarium fluorescent lights

"Tony Volk" wrote in message
...
Having a fight with BBA and staghorn algae on my hands (nice to find out
they're the same thing- confirm if you can), I'm curious to get a general
poll from the group as to how you've dealt with algae, and how it worked.
It'd be nice to share the different methods and how they've worked as
there's got to be a lot of experience with algae on this newsgroup! Heck,
maybe if we get enough replies I'll post them all up on one general

webpage
(or submit to one). I'm especially curious about the general opinion of
blacking out a tank, as that seems cheap, easy, and effective? Let's try

to
use a similar format if possible:

Aquarium (all): 55 gallon, heavy fish load, medium plant load, soft water,
~4kH, ~7pH, 75 F, ammonia 0, nitrites 0, nitrates ~30 ppm, 2 HOB filters,
originally OTS

Algae: BBA
Amount: Severe (not catastrophic), covering 20% of tank and 40% plants I'd
say
Effort: reduce OTS nitrate levels from 200ppm+ to ~30ppm, increase kH
Effect: has dramatically slowed the level of BBA, but triggered an

explosion
of staghorn on my Vals

Algae: BBA & Staghorn
Amount: moderate-severe
Effort: manually remove it; gently pull on staghorn, using a credit card

on
tank walls while siphoning (BBA), leaf trimming
Effect: pretty good for BBA, not so effective for staghorn, I think it
really goes for any sign of weakness in Vals (can it weaken its host?)

Algae: BBA, Staghorn, Hair
Amount: moderate-severe
Effort: add extra plants (Hornwort - 2 big bunches)
Effect: in combination with the other efforts, I'm hoping that the very

fast
growing Hornwort will clean up the water, but so far it's having little
effect

Algae: all kinds
Amount: moderate-severe
Effort: Pleco, Otto's, SAE, Flying Fox
Effect: Pleco, at 10", is not surprisingly very effective at cleaning
general green algae (only problem is immense amount of poop!); Otto's and
SAEs (3 and 4 respectively) eat frequently, but don't seem to be able to
reduce levels (maintain them?), SAEs do munch on BBA, FF only green algae

on
occasion (primarily fish food)




  #3  
Old January 20th 05, 04:40 PM
spiral_72
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Default

55g-FW, fish: swordtails, asst. tetras, Corys
plants: Amazon swords, Java fern, Hornwort
substrate: soil (red clay) and sand with a layer of gravel
~74F, 7.4pH, 7dKH(125ppm), 7dGH(125ppm)
0 ammonia, 0 nitrates

Algae: slime algae (Cyanobacteria)
Amount: medium
Effort: cleaning and water changes only got rid of about 25%
Effort: Blackout tank for 5 days cut algae to almost nothing and
remains stable with
two week water changes. Algae is not cured, but is well under control.

  #4  
Old January 21st 05, 08:56 AM
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Try adding proper CO2 levels and keeping that stable.
Do some weekly 50% water changes.

Dose good CO2 and nutreients levels and you will notn have these
problems and much better plant growth as a result.
Staghorn and BBA are both red algae, but they are quite different
genera in most respects and their cause for blooming is also different.
Regards,
Tom Barr

  #5  
Old January 21st 05, 08:58 AM
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Blackout is not effective for either of these algae BTW, it's specific
for BGA and works well if you dose KNO3 2x a week and do weekly water
changes (50%). Blackout can kill off Green water, but that's tougher.
Regards,
Tom Barr

  #6  
Old January 21st 05, 02:37 PM
Richard Sexton
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Default

In article .com,
wrote:
Blackout is not effective for either of these algae BTW, it's specific
for BGA and works well if you dose KNO3 2x a week and do weekly water
changes (50%). Blackout can kill off Green water, but that's tougher.
Regards,
Tom Barr


So what kills staghorn Tom? I've had that **** in my tanks for about
10 years and *I think* have finally eradicated it by using H2O2 which
can be very hard on, well, everything. But I think it's finally gone now.

There seems to be a fine line between killing it off in a tank with
fish/plants/shrimp being ok and "oops, not much left alive in there is there".

Aquarium Pharmecuticals "Algae Fix" makes short work of the stuff but
is toxic to all inverts.

Somewhere arond 2.5cc/L is the H202 dose that kills it. Be careful.

--
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  #7  
Old January 21st 05, 07:16 PM
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Simple Staghorm appears due to excess fish waste and NH4, substrate
disturbances.
If you hack the tank, make sure to do a large water change right
afterwards.

Once there, much like BBA, you need to go and remove it. Prune 1/3 to
1/2 the tank well, preen the plants, take off any infected leaves.
Remove any detritus, dead leaves etc. Then do the old 50% water changes
and dosing the nutrients back again. Then next week finish off the
other half. Clean equipment well with bleach/H2O2 etc

If conditions are good, eg, good CO2, regular routine dosing, no algae
will bug you if you do this.
Less light helps to balance CO2/nutrients and gives you more wiggle
room.

It's basic work, there is no anti laziness pill, procrastination pill
(generally the issue for most of us, I'd like some of these myself) or
algae cure all that addresses that.

By providing optimal growing conditions, pruning really makes removal
of any attached algae rather easy. Good conditions stop it's growth,
then it's just a matter of removing what's there. Pruning makes short
work of this.

Algae fix and the like: copper works the best IME, IMO of any
algaicide, it's what we use at the state level for algae issue,
but...............it's also the absolute LAST thing we use.

I specialize in alternative non herbicidal treats for algae and aquatic
weed control.
H2O2 is a general biocide, it kills everything rather than a target
organism. Copper is better there.
We have acrolein which is a nasty strong oxidizer that decays into CO2
after 2 days and is used in irrigation canals to kill off weeds and
anything else. It's highly toxic to fish(So is chlorine/H2O2 for that
matter), but it's not used in natural or potable waters. If the water
is static/non moving, H2O2 could be used or O3(which degasses/decays in
1 hours or so).

I'd say pruning and good nutrients makes the best short work on any
algae with no harm to the plants, actually they grow much better since
you are addressing those needs and issues. Which was the original goal
to begin with, was it not?
Best niot to lose sight of the original goal and purpose and not get
all fixated on killing algae. That's not long range management!

Removing the algae by simply pruning and removing and reworking the
tank area is the fastest/safest method around to rid your tank of the
algae, the real problem is that is grows back fast UNLESS you take care
of the reason why it's there in the first place.
Poor plant health/growth.

That's why I don't have algae issues and why the advice I give works.

That focus will never change. It's much easier to deal with algae by
using that approach than herbicides. Tanks look better etc.
If you have lots of tanks etc, don't have time etc etc, go non CO2
approaches, never half do an approach and then complain it does not
work.

There is an approach for everyone's goals, there are trade offs, but
most are very happy given the initial goal and results if they follow
through.

I never endorse nor use a herbicide/algicide. It's not the goal in
planted tanks and they do not help plants grow, that is why the algae
is there, sub optimal plant growth/dominance.

I know I am preaching to the choir to some degree, but it's always good
to think and re evalute things when addressing any treatment program.
Consider the goal, don't fall into the trap that you need snake oil to
get you "over this temporay hump".
Cleaning stuff up with H2O2 or Bleach etc is fine. H2O2 kills a number
of plants selectively also, Egeria, Lagarosiphons are greatly
effected(more than the algae).

Regards,
Tom Barr

  #8  
Old January 21st 05, 07:22 PM
Richard Sexton
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In article . com,
wrote:
Simple Staghorm appears due to excess fish waste and NH4, substrate
disturbances.


This doesn't explani why it has shown up here and grown very well
in fishless substrate free tanks.

Algae fix and the like: copper works the best IME,


Sure, but, H202 can be used in tanks with, say, shrimp
and it will kill the staghorn and not hurt the shrimp[1]. Copper
and Alage Fix won't do that.


[1] If you're REAL careful.
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633CSi 250SE/C 300SD | Killies, killi.net, Crypts, aquaria.net
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  #9  
Old January 22nd 05, 09:52 AM
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You can take the shrimp or fish out temporaily also.
Bomb the tank, then return them.
Catching them: drain 80% of the water, they cannot run if they don't
have no water.
H2O2 kills some plants, and did not do any harm to 3 species of green
algae.
So.............it's no cure all, that's for certain.

Neither is copper.....
No algicide is.

Simple Staghorm appears due to excess fish waste and NH4, substrate
disturbances.


This doesn't explani why it has shown up here and grown very well
in fishless substrate free tanks.


Substrate free tanks with plants and lots of light?
Planted substrate free tanks? I suppose there are such things, not many
mind you

But more to the pouint, yes it does explain things, the tank have far
less bacteria, and this has less buffering of NH4.
asnything that reduces NH4 is a good thing, less light and more plants
and less fish etc.

NH4 does not take long to induce algae. Once there, the algae will then
persist.
The NH4 presence does not take that long and day or two of poor plant
health, or a large influx of NH4, then it's removed by plants, filter
bacteria etc and you will never see it or measure it till after the
algae has bloomed.

But.....you can dose NH4 and urea and see this occur ansd work backward
and not have to chase this through fish loads and observations alone.

Fish kills occur in shallow lakes often when wind whips up the
sediments and reduces the O2 to nil. We have almost never measured this
while it's happening, we do see the aftermath. The same is true for the
algae.
We know this occurs in lakes because a few lakes had DO monitors on
them and the O2 level where measured during this time peroid. But these
are far and few in between.

You might consider looking back in time to see what was done when it
started.
Data is critical for that reason. Some Reef folks are very good with
this and use good test kits as well.
I've been able to look at their data and go here's where this bloom
occured? I am right virtually everytime.
I know this because I work backwards and try inducing it and then kill
it and try again. After a few times, it quickly becomes clear. Someone
else tries, and they get similar results. High fish loads or urea also
seem to help more than NH4 dosing for this alga.
Regards,
Tom Barr









..

  #10  
Old January 23rd 05, 11:06 AM
Richard Sexton
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In article . com,
wrote:
You can take the shrimp or fish out temporaily also.
Bomb the tank, then return them.
Catching them: drain 80% of the water, they cannot run if they don't
have no water.
H2O2 kills some plants, and did not do any harm to 3 species of green
algae.
So.............it's no cure all, that's for certain.

Neither is copper.....
No algicide is.


iNot having the organism ni my tanks would be a good start. I've tried
controlling it, does't work. It never died, once it'd infected
a leaf it'll always come back, and it's everywhere. Or ratehr it was
eevrywhere. I believe it gone now. We'll see. Seevrl tanks have gone
several weeks without a trace of it. The rest I just dosed with
h202.

Simple Staghorm appears due to excess fish waste and NH4, substrate
disturbances.


This doesn't explani why it has shown up here and grown very well
in fishless substrate free tanks.


Substrate free tanks with plants and lots of light?
Planted substrate free tanks? I suppose there are such things, not many
mind you


Sure. Glass pots. With flourite in them.
I made a bunch of 4.5" 3" high ones out of 5mm glass one night.

But more to the pouint, yes it does explain things, the tank have far
less bacteria, and this has less buffering of NH4.
asnything that reduces NH4 is a good thing, less light and more plants
and less fish etc.


I dunno. SInce I got an ammonia test kit a while back I've
neevr seen any readongin any tank higher than zero. I mean
geez, most of my tanks are 20 gallon with less than a dozen small
algae eating shrimp and at least a dozen crypts in each tank under
fairly stronk lights, as in as many T12 tubes as I
can physically fit over a rack of these. There's no
source of ammonia to speak of and lots of thigns to eat it out
of the water. I will buy that staghorn flourishes with
ammonia but the mere lack ot it will not IME prevent it's
contunues slow growth into some truly exotic looking shapes
(befors it becomes a baseball sized mass of stringy crap
if you let it go as I did recently for an experiment. I can
fertilize and waterchange this test tank all I want
and the worst that'll haeppen is it goes dormant for a while,
it never dies though unless I kill it. with h202.

PLus ut gets everywhere . I have utterly no problem cntirlling ebery
other form og alage but this crap acts lie a bacerial infection
not alage.

NH4 does not take long to induce algae. Once there, the algae will then
persist.
The NH4 presence does not take that long and day or two of poor plant
health, or a large influx of NH4, then it's removed by plants, filter
bacteria etc and you will never see it or measure it till after the
algae has bloomed.

But.....you can dose NH4 and urea and see this occur ansd work backward
and not have to chase this through fish loads and observations alone.

Fish kills occur in shallow lakes often when wind whips up the
sediments and reduces the O2 to nil. We have almost never measured this
while it's happening, we do see the aftermath. The same is true for the
algae.
We know this occurs in lakes because a few lakes had DO monitors on
them and the O2 level where measured during this time peroid. But these
are far and few in between.

You might consider looking back in time to see what was done when it
started.


Bloody hell that was 10 years ago. I never had it before I moved
here, and it's now in every petshop in toronto and locally that
I've seen. SO all incoing stuff is cleanes of it - 10:1 h2o2: water
for 10 minutes then TEST and OBSERVE the plant in isolation. SOmetimes
an infeceted leaf will grow it again, double the time period of the
nect dose. Add TONS of iron afterwords as it gets used up very
quickly doing this. WHen it no longer displays any sign of the cursed
stiff for a couple of weeks it's safe to put into one
of my tanks.


--
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1970 280SE, 72 280SE | Old wris****ches http://watches.list.mbz.org
 




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