blackout failed for BGA

Aviel Livay

Junior Poster
Feb 20, 2005
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Hi,

Just wanted to share this with you,

Lately my substrate became covered with more and more grey/brown stuff. I tried to vacum it gently but it came back. Also particles floating in the water column. I know ciano - I had it in the past. I treated it several times with arythromicin and decided that this time I shall use blackout.

I cleaned as much as I could, shaked the plants, closed the CO2, added 14 ppm NO3 and 2 ppm po4, and I covered the tank with 20 blankets to make sure that no light penetrates in.

3 days blackout with no glimpsing, no food, no fertilization, nothing.

The only light that the water have seen were those of the UV filter. Also I left the circulation going to the chiller that's located in the porch. That's all.

After 3 days I turned on the lights, the tank looked cleaner, the eusteralis seemed to get out of the stunted situation, but there were specs of that brown dust on the substrate. No pearling at all.

I waited now 4 more days and my conclusion is that this thing is still alive, the substrate is covered with more and more of this stuff, very minimal pearling even after water chang and even if my PH is ~5.9.

I am doing now a 50% WC and will see how things develop.

I have already purchased the infamous arythromycin.

Tom - it doesn't work for me.

Aviel.
 

Tom Barr

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Jan 23, 2005
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Re: blackout failed for BGA

You need to figure out why.

It's not the blackout, it's something to do with your tank conditions.
pH 5.9?

When you say the tank looks cleaner, you mean no BGA or most of it had died back?

Sounds like you need to clean the tank, vac the gravel a little, clean filter, prune more offten, fluff dead spots, change circulation around etc etc.
Cyano is not brown nor grey, it is a very distict blue green with a musty odor.

Did you do at least a 50% water change before and after the 3 day blackout?
You missed something in the protocol or else this is not BGA.

I'd look there and try again.
You can use the drugs, but it still will come back(as it did in the past).
The issue is environmental, not a lack of drugs............or blackouts.........

Regards,
Tom Barr
 

Aviel Livay

Junior Poster
Feb 20, 2005
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1
Re: blackout failed for BGA

Tom,

I am suprised that you are saying that ciano is only blue/green. It definitely comes in the grey/brown colors and it definitely goes away with the use of Erythromycin.

Here's a picture of what I had a year ago -

plague1.jpg


Here's another picture -

plague2.jpg


It came now after I was low on nitrates I think - I leaned the nitrate in order to get a better red for the AGA contest...

Cavan had the same problem and used to call it "grey snot"...

So it definitely is cyano.

And I worked exactly as the protocol says: suck the bottom as much as I could, fluff the plants, 50% WC, turn off the CO2, air pump on, +14 ppm nitrate, complete darkness, 3 days, turn on CO2/light and after the first working day, fluffed again, sucked some more and replaced 50%.

Maybe if I left it 5 days in the darkness it would work - dunno.

My weekly and sometimes biweekly routine is to take 1/3 of the aquarium plants out, suck the 2 years old substrate from debris, cut the bottom of the plants, re-plant and then fluff + 50% WC + fluff again.... I don't clean the filters so much - maybe that's the problem.

Also what's wrong with a PH of 5.9?? Me and some friends from the israeli forum - we go even below that.

Aviel.
 

Tom Barr

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Re: blackout failed for BGA

This is grey slime my friend, not cyano(Oscilliitoria).
Blackout nor EM works on it.
Cavan had this stuff for a long time and tried a number of things on it.


Aviel Livay said:
Tom,
Cavan had the same problem and used to call it "grey snot"...

So it definitely is cyano.

No it's not.

And I worked exactly as the protocol says: suck the bottom as much as I could, fluff the plants, 50% WC, turn off the CO2, air pump on, +14 ppm nitrate, complete darkness, 3 days, turn on CO2/light and after the first working day, fluffed again, sucked some more and replaced 50%.

Maybe if I left it 5 days in the darkness it would work - dunno.

My weekly and sometimes biweekly routine is to take 1/3 of the aquarium plants out, suck the 2 years old substrate from debris, cut the bottom of the plants, re-plant and then fluff + 50% WC + fluff again.... I don't clean the filters so much - maybe that's the problem.

Also what's wrong with a PH of 5.9?? Me and some friends from the israeli forum - we go even below that.

Aviel.

Seems a tad off, even if you have a KH of 1-2.............
But back to the issue, this is not a BGA.
Cavan tried eM, did not work.
He also tried blackout, did not work.

I have seen this under a scope a couple of times, but all that's left is a bunch of spores(appeared more like a fungus)......most BGA's have filmanents and sheaths, there was nothing.

So we definitely do not not know what the pest is.
I'm one of the very few people who can ID algae and BGA and while is might be possible, I doubt it's a BGA.

So blackout will not work. But blackout does work well for Oscillitoria, that's I do know.

You assumed this BGA, we do not know what it is.
Cavan has sent me samples 2x but I've never been able to culture what was left nor ID based off the spores alone.

I've never found an alga I could not beat using manual methods and water changes, cleaning, pruning and preening. On larger tanks, this becomes a lot of work though. Excel, peroxide, low copper levels, 5 instead of 3 days(I doubt this will work), etc.

You are welcomed to try EM. I recall Cavan tried it, it did not work.

Regards,
Tom Barr
 

fosteder

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Feb 3, 2005
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Rochester, NH
Re: blackout failed for BGA

I'm soooo glad I have been reading this post. I have the same thing and thought it was BGA. I did one round of EM with no success. I will do frequent water changes now.

Tom, do you know what causes grey slime?
 

Tom Barr

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Re: blackout failed for BGA

Nope, but I talked to Cavan for nearly a year about it.
I've never been able to culture it.
If you cannot culture it, you cannot figure out why is blooms or not.

But this along with Green dust have similar patterns in that area as well as rapid reinfestations.

At least I know what Green dust algae is.

There is another antibiotic someone claimed worked besides EM, I think it was oxoalic acid or something.

Regards,
Tom Barr
 

Aviel Livay

Junior Poster
Feb 20, 2005
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0
1
Re: blackout failed for BGA

After I read your reply Tom I ran home and spent 5 hours on cleaning, cleaning, cleaning - took out *ALL* the plants from my 200 gallon tank, using diatom filter hoses I sucked again and again and again tons of particles, cleaned the 3 filters, replaced maybe 80% of the water overall, and put EM. There are still particles on the ground - can't just can't get rid of them all.

Here's a link to my previous grey slime attack:

http://aquabotanicwetthumb.infopop.cc/groupee/forums/a/tpc/f/8796060812/m/134103265/p/1

And cavan won it using UV & blackout, I won it with water changes/UV/EM/god-knows -

AZET said "in my case, i changed the waterflow, what helped immediately and have added antibiotica for 5-6 days to completely get rid of the plague...
"

Cavan said "Do you have an UV sterilizer? That may work. If not, do a blackout for 3-4 days. No lights. Cover the tank with a blanket, etc. I have never been able to get rid of it any other way. Antibiotics didn't work. Once it gets a foothold, it is very, very difficult to get rid of it."

he also said "So, it may be a cyanobacteria like BGA but just a different one. I talked to Claus Christensen about this subject at length at the 2002 AGA convention, and that was his opinion. He said that he didn't think an alga could ever grow that fast."

And "You will need more than a 14 hour blackout if that's what you end up doing. The dark period should be three days at least. Not more than four. Your plants will look bad for a while afterwards, and the really sensitive ones may not survive, but things will look better in a while. What I have done before was to do a big water change, run a diatom filter, hook up the uv, and keep it running for the 3-4 days of _total_ darkness. "

That thread is a good reading... - I also consulted a slime expert "Lori Johnston" but his recommendations where to shock/starve/etc - which means death to the aquarium echology.

Aviel.
 

defdac

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Aug 25, 2006
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Re: blackout failed for BGA

I have had something similar, and this is what it looked like in a *really* old and bad microscope:
10x
picture1403.jpg

30x
picture1401.jpg

Some sort of diatom I would say. A Quickfilter on the filter-inlet was quite effecive.
 

defdac

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Re: blackout failed for BGA

Oh, and they were characteristic in that way that if I covered the tank over night, in the morning when the light came on the water was a bit cloudy and slowly they attached to side of leaves as the day progressed.

That should explain why a diatom/UV-filter would be very effective.
 

Tom Barr

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Jan 23, 2005
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Re: blackout failed for BGA

No, that is just diatoms growing on the slime.
They are common and often mixed in with a major bloom forming algae/bacteria films.

D, that looks like it but all I had was spores left by the time I got the samples.

In any event, attack it with everything and hope for the best.
I highly recommed multiple fronts for any attack.

UV, Diatom, Water changers, manual cleaning, fluffing, water flow changes, blackout, anitbiotics, none of this stuff hurts.....

But it's not the normal BGA that is blue green.

Regards,
Tom Barr
 

fosteder

Guru Class Expert
Feb 3, 2005
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Rochester, NH
Re: blackout failed for BGA

Aviel, can you give an update on your "grey snot algae" problem? Have you had any luck getting rid of it?

I have the same goo in my tank. I've done 4 days of big water changes, and I am starting a 3 day blackout. I plan to follow tha blackout with more water changes....thank God for Pythons.....

I'm just curious to see if I'm wasting my time.