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Algae culture, a good reference for understanding how they grow...........

Discussion in 'Aquatic Microbiology' started by Tom Barr, Oct 2, 2009.

  1. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    and what Influence their growth rates:


    Algal cultures and phytoplankton ecology - Google Books

    I have Andersen's book, but this one is not bad.

    This one gives good detail to the growth phase of algae, the lag, the exponential, stationary and death phase of cultures. How might the stage of the life history affect results if you tested algae and "cures"?


    Also, there is a nice graph about the effects of light on growth rate and uptake in algae.

    Differences between species in competition etc.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  2. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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  3. Philosophos

    Philosophos Lifetime Charter Member
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    Nice link, Tom; I've got the first one bookmarked. That second link is giving me timed out connection.

    -Philosophos
     
  4. dutchy

    dutchy Plant Guru Team
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    Thanks Tom, some more good reading. The second link worked ok here.

    Regards,
    Dutchy
     
  5. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    It's a dowloadable pdf
    Takes longer to load.


    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  6. Philosophos

    Philosophos Lifetime Charter Member
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    It's working today. My pdf's respond fast; foxit .pdf reader does a good job of things.

    I gave the entire thing a first pass. Here are my primary notes:

    pg 137 - LOW nutrient availability causing algae? Being written about in a paper back in 1991? Interesting.

    pg 142 - CaCO3 is precipitated by algae? is it a byproduct or was the same CaCO3 present before the algae, too?

    pg 145 - The 550:30:1 CNP from Atkinson and Smith is interesting next to the more common 106:16:1, and actually shows that less complex algae requires less PO4 than macroalgaes. How did we become so confused as to say PO4 causes algae?

    pg 147 - If light levels effect the algae type present, is it possible that low light would not only slow growth, but induce possibly less competitive types of algae? Are there any studies on inducing algae types through altering light levels? More unicellular algae perhaps?

    151 - Regarding the loss of dissolved organic compounds, if the first hypotheses is true, wouldn't it become apparent that algaes biomass does not increase in direct proportion with light levels, if light were the only altered variable? Does this same process happen with macrophytes?

    154 - So does this page explain why we end up with a little hair algae near the base of large clusters of stem plants in the aquarium?

    159 - High plant density may reduce algae through released organic substances. Need to read more on this

    161 - Horrible graph

    163 - What prevents algae from being temperature limited? Is a hotter tank (presuming it does not stress the plants) better for out-competing algae?

    Overall I found the paper a more productive read than most of what I dig up. I'm going to give this paper a 2nd pass in a couple of days and see if I can't get my hands on some of the source studies they list.

    Nice find, Tom.

    -Philosophos
     
  7. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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  8. Philosophos

    Philosophos Lifetime Charter Member
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    Thanks for the reply, Tom; it's nice getting a little clarification on something like this. I really enjoyed this paper more than most; dealing with concepts rather than specific data about the limnology of some backwoods lake made it almost like reading a text book.

    If I can't get any of the more frequently sourced papers, I'm definitely going to look around and see what other information supports it. Or better yet, what information contradicts it.

    -Philosophos
     
  9. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Old trick: read the citations of good papers.
    Look those papers up;)

    Also, work google scholar with different key words, example, you'll get much more from something like "periphyton" vs say..."algae and nutrients".

    Be specific as you can, research is/tends to be.

    Use the species/genus name, use a narrow focus if there's too much stuff.

    Trim it down, use "macrophyte", not "aquarium plants".

    Also, see what google books pulls up.
    I have a lot of books.
    I read them too.

    Over time, and continuously looking, you gain a lot.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  10. shoggoth43

    shoggoth43 Lifetime Charter Member
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    I was recently reading someone having issues with hair algae and they referenced EI and several other methods. Accordingly he went into the CO2 and whatnot he used and how he could never quite get it under control and that the idea that once the plants get going the algae will subside wasn't the whole story. His theory was that this algae actually used large amounts of silicates and due to the high amount in his water as well as the silica sand in the tank may have been a large contributing factor for the plague.

    Any thoughts on this? I haven't really had time to chase that down any further but from all appearances his efforts were a step up from the usual "EI is bunk" naysayers.

    -
    S
     
  11. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Diatoms use Si, not the other species.
    Do you or others really, honestly, have diatom issues of any sort?

    Some get a little in the initial 2 week phase then never see it again.
    Some brown diatoms, slimy growth, long strands, Melosira typically, might also occur if you really mess things up.

    Limiting Si in tap?
    Tap is loaded with Si, lots of it.

    If they claim is true, then we should all have noxious blooms of Diatoms, and yet extremely few do.

    The claimant's theory does not hold water with the observed algae issues in the hobby, diatoms are just not that big of an issue, otto cats and most every algae herbivore loves diatoms over most other species also.

    Diatoms are always there also, at low levels.
    You just cannot see them.

    Many species of algae will persist after the focus on plant is done and growing well. This is hardly surprising we might see that. We see this often with GDA............however, I cannot induce it with good CO2.

    Plants grow well etc, but with somewhat suboptimal CO2, I cannot grow it for the life of me, and yet in another tank, I can, the difference was CO2.

    Still, GDA will hang on, so will green water, and lately, so will Spirogyra with good plant conditions and growth.

    This is not new.
    Once induced, these algae need another method to eradicate/control, good/better CO2, allowing it to run it's cycle, using a UV/diatom filter, 3 days on/off blackout cycling all can be effective at killing these algae, even if the nutrients/light are the same, reducing light helps also.

    So it's not only about good plant growth, but rather, improved plant health and growth. Then control measures to kill/beat back algae work much better.

    They need not be nearly as harsh and long term.

    While the observation is correct IMO/IME, that simply growing plants alone is not the whole story, the Si theory is so full of holes, and most anyone can see it, it's hardly a debate before it even gets started. You might argue this (Si limitation) in a central ocean gyre where the levels are very low/spartan.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
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