Fighting a Ghost?


Prolific Poster
Apr 4, 2005
Okay, I have a question I need an objective answer to:

Is it possible to COMPLETELY eradicate all visible signs of algae in your tank without becoming an Amano 2 hour per day pruning freak?

The reason I ask is that I have been fighting a battle to get rid of the last minute traces of algae in my tank. I have the right levels of ferts and CO2 and my plants grow like weeds yet, there's the slight trace of thread algea (1 or 2 very thin strands every day or so that I manually remove) and a brown smear type algae that grows slowly on a few of the leaves low down in the tank away from the light. The tank looks great so; is this the best I can reasonably expect it to get? Am I being a bit anal with regard to complete eradication or should that be my goal?

I think I'm fighting a ghost here and don't want to do so in vain. Maybe a tiny bit of algae is realistic?

Thanks all.


Prolific Poster
Jan 24, 2005
Sarasota, FL.
Re: Fighting a Ghost?

I gave up on trying to have a completely algae free tank. All of my tanks have very little algae and I’m happy with that. As long as the tank looks good and algae is not visible unless you really look for it I’m happy.

Look very carefully at Amano’s Tanks some do have a little bit of algae.

Ian H

Guru Class Expert
Jan 24, 2005
Shipley, West Yorkshire, UK
Re: Fighting a Ghost?

I class my plant tank as algae free but if I look really closely there is some minor growth on a few plants. This is in the upper levels where my army of shrimp and algae eaters don't go that often. Although the front glass gets about 4 hours of afternoon sun I only need to clean it every 2 weeks. I need some algae in the tank otherwise I would have to suppliment the algae eaters diet more often than I do.

The reality is that there will always be some algae in a tank, it's a natural thing. The answer is to limit it's growth and get rid of the invasive less attractive ones. To have no algae at all would require a totally sterile environment, i.e. distilled water, totally sealed from external air sources, sterilised plants and substrate,no fish. Not really feasible in a practical world.


Tom Barr

Staff member
Jan 23, 2005
Re: Fighting a Ghost?

Can you say non CO2?
Came back after 11 days, they are fine.

Tom Barr