BGA evolution under antibiotics - Help me

jonny_ftm

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Mar 5, 2009
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Hi,

My dry started nano (signature link) got BGA in 24h after it was immersed (organics on soil not cleaned after 4.5 months of emersed phase), no other algae.


I started clarithromycine 2-3mg/l as Tom suggested, No blackout as it was limited

WC, EI dosing, reduced light by 50% (now 11W for 7gal real volume, 12gal tank), WC every 1-3 days + organics removal, CO2 flooded with extreme myst in all volume, perling like mad

Now, I'm on day 5 of antibiotics. No more growth of any BGA, regression of BGA on soil and plants. My problem is that there's still a green layer on a stone and despite 80-90% WC still that BGA smelling


Is it normal? will the BGA kick in again if I stop treatment? I'll continue it 7 days total and try to remove manually the remaining, but should I treat longer if any green part of BGA remains?
 

jonny_ftm

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Mar 5, 2009
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Sorry to insist,

I'll make tonight a new WC and I have to decide if I need to add an antibiotic dose to complete the treatment. I'm on day 6. As I said, there's a strong smelling of cyano despite I don't see any left, except on a stone. I used a cotton yesterday and the BGA on that stone went easily and looked like dead/different

Also, I see some green BGA under gravel, in contact to front glass. So, I mixed the soil there so that water rich with antibiotics affects the undergravel BGA

Is it better to add some days of treatment or give it a try and risk a new outbreak + antibiotic resistance?

Thank you for helping me decide
 

Philosophos

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I'm not much for antibiotics, but I hate to see a question go unanswered. You've also got a very nice tank started, and I know what it's like to see one of those fall apart after a ton of effort.

If the antibiotics are killing of the BGA and not harming the plants visibly, why not?

On the other hand, being patient may be more telling of what's going on. If you stop for a while, what ever the BGA does should tell you whether you've removed the prerequisites for its growth. If it clings on a little, hit it again and see what happens. If you can push it past its equilibrium, then even better. If it returns quickly, then antibiotics would be in order, and you're back to the drawing board for prevention methods.

-Philosophos
 

Tom Barr

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As far we know, there's no evidence that BGA in aquariums has ever shown any antibiotic resistance to EM.

EM should clear up the BGA in about 3-4 days tops.
If not, perhaps you did not clean the BGA off 1st prior to initial dose/treatment, did the water changes, cleaned the filter etc?

I would also add activated carbon for the soil issue.

You can also do a blackout in conjunction with EM dosing or other antibiotics that affect gram positive cell wall formation.

Should take only 3-4 days, same time frame as a blackout will.

You need to dose KNO3 after the water changes, and then consistently thereafter. EM should give you about 20-45 day window to fix the NO3 issue.

Regards,
Tom Barr
 

jonny_ftm

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Mar 5, 2009
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Thank you for answering,

Indeed, I didn't remove all BGA before 1st treatment, just what I could. It goes every where between the Eleocharis leaves, so hard to remove all. Not a big mess, but many spots of BGA in locations hard to attain

Also, didn't clean the filter with the WC :confused:

I'll do a WC tonight or tomorrow + filter cleaning and see if it kicks in again. NO3 should be fixed now as I dose EI and tested with Salifert kits, calibrated + organics removed

Eventually I'll go with a second treatment + blackout if needed, many thanks again both of you, I'll let you know
 

Tom Barr

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Main issues with BGA: organic matter, flow(sort of go together when you think about a dirty filter that has not been cleaned in some time), and lack of NO3 for plants.

Once present, fixing those will often not eradicate the BGA(fixing the root problem that caused the bloom), so a treatment like a blackout, or antibiotics is required.

There are a number of cases like this, somethings simply fixing the root issue will "cure" the problem in mild cases, while other folks kill the algae, but do not fix the root issue.

Some have to do both to fix their problem and I think this aggressive approach is best, fixes both issues and is redundant.

Regards,
Tom Barr
 

jonny_ftm

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Mar 5, 2009
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You confort me, thanks,

In deed, the filter was deeply cleaned just a week ago before it goes in the emersed setup

By the way, I'm sure the smelling of cyano was present during the last weeks of emersed phase. My wife was telling me about a strange smell but I didn't think at BGA at all, in an emersed phase. At any time the water level was above substrate.

The BGA was evident after day 1 of immersion, probably triggered by the important organic layer on surface

Could it that BGA can grow emersed but at a less invading stage? Why did I get BGA in an emersed setup, too high moisture?
 

jonny_ftm

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Mar 5, 2009
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Ok, 1 week total treatment, 3 days since WC and active carbon filtration: no more BGA traces and the smell is gone with carbon

Hopefully it never comes back

Thank you all and Tom especially. So it looks like clarithromycine was also active on BGA
 

Philosophos

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I'm glad to hear that you've got the stuff beaten back. Sometimes seeing algae disappear is almost more gratifying than not getting it.

How's the tank looking otherwise? Is everything adapting from emersed nicely?

-Philosophos
 

jonny_ftm

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Mar 5, 2009
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The P. Helferi was a total mess. They got an emersed ugly unstructered emersed form in 4.5 months. Now, I see signs of new leaves from the center, like if an immersed form will come back, so have to wait. Otherwise, not any melting at all. Even the R. Wallichii is doing great. The Eleocharis is growing very fast. The moss starts growing. The C. Parva didn't show any suffering. Only the Anubia are getting me concerned. They started to rot in emersed phase, and some continue in immersed. I think I cut the rhizome too short to get more plants from the pots, or some rhizomes dried, I don't really know. The Anubia on the root looks like they will let the leaves fall and produce new immersed leaves, hard to say because of the slow growth. But definately, the Anubia is the only one having some hard time to adapt to immersed

No algae, except some green hairs on the Christmas moss, that was present when planted, but self limited. Like when grown in the pots, immersed, the weeping moss is by far less prone to algae than Christmas, despite similar maintenance conditions
 

Philosophos

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jonny_ftm;43700 said:
The P. Helferi was a total mess. They got an emersed ugly unstructered emersed form in 4.5 months. Now, I see signs of new leaves from the center, like if an immersed form will come back, so have to wait.

Good to know. I'm playing with P. helferi in some small samples and it's growing painfully slow in both emersed and submerged forms. you know it's bad when
 

jonny_ftm

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Mar 5, 2009
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Yes, the R. Wallichii have a very beautiful growth without any algae, the eleocharis too. Some brown algae on the very slow growers, that is Parva and Anubia, but they're not a real problem and present in most new aquariums

I'll wait 2-3 months for the growth to decide on what I'm gonna keep

For now, I'm at 1.5wpg (7gals real volume) or 1wpg total volume (12gals), but the growth satisfys me