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Fish Food = Green Dust

Discussion in 'Algae Control' started by Tom Wood, Jan 27, 2005.

  1. Tom Wood

    Tom Wood Guru Class Expert

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    I've been watching this correlation between fish food and green dust algae for some time and it's become very clearly related. Feed the fish, get green dust algae on the front glass. I took Tom's advice to up the CO2 and PO4 to no avail, so I'm wondering if there's something else I should look at.

    I'm feeding TetraMin dry food into a 90 gallon with pressurized CO2, NO3 at 10-20ppm, PO4 at 2ppm, PC lights at 2 wpg on for 11 hours a day. Everything else is doing well. I don't mind cleaning the GD, but it would be nice to find a way to knock it out.

    TW
     
  2. chubasco

    chubasco Guru Class Expert

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    Re: Fish Food = Green Dust

    Tom,
    Don't know what fish you're keeping, but have you tried other foods? Some
    frozen bloodworms, frozen mosquito larvae, Hikari micro-pellet, live daphnia, brine shrimp, etc...I'm trying to remember what someone said on the AKA list about Tetra foods...it'll come to me eventually :eek:

    Bill
     
  3. Tom Wood

    Tom Wood Guru Class Expert

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    Re: Fish Food = Green Dust

    Hey Bill,

    I'm not keeping anything exotic, just your basic Platies, Cardinals and Corries. So I don't particularly want to get into exotic foods.The Platies are actually the best algae eaters I've ever kept. What they leave behind, the snails clean up quickly.

    TW
     
  4. JadeButterfly

    JadeButterfly Guru Class Expert

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    Re: Fish Food = Green Dust

    I feed my tank only frozen bloodworms and brine shrimp lately.

    I still notice some green dust algae.

    my CO2 and PO4 is high....
     
  5. PeterGwee

    PeterGwee Lifetime Charter Member
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    Re: Fish Food = Green Dust

    TW, do not trust the PO4 kit. Add back the PO4 via the estimative index method and see how things go about. If you still get GD on the tank wall, consider adding more CO2 via the visual method. Like Tom Barr has mentioned, a small riccia rock is good indicator for CO2. Sometimes test kits can lead folks into trouble.. :rolleyes:

    Regards
    Peter Gwee
     
  6. Tom Wood

    Tom Wood Guru Class Expert

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    Re: Fish Food = Green Dust

    I don't do EI (heresy I know) but I'll try upping the PO4.

    Thanks,

    TW
     
  7. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Re: Fish Food = Green Dust

    GD will grow with good EI levels and dosing.
    I could not keepo it alive for more than 3 weeks.

    It could be if you simply leave it and don't wipe it off, it'll do it's cycle and then never come back.

    They are zoospores, they will swim around after you wipe them off and reattach.

    You can see this occur without a scope also. Wipe and then watch the film reappear in about 1 hour.

    When you wipe, make sure there is no current and vacuum upo any of the dust.

    The other method, preferred method, is to do a large water change, like 80-90% and remove it with a paper towel and toss the towels out after each wipe. Do this wiping when the water is drained, like wiping well, you know, like when your pants are down..........you don;t wipe them when they are on, well... most folks don't.

    This will remove them.

    Do this 2-3x as needed(either that same day later after what's left has reattched or wait 2 days etc).

    Normal nutrients.

    You can run a UV or a diatom right after as well to get any floaters.
    You can also reduce the light and pull the lights away from the front of the glass etc or where it's growing.

    Only in very bad cases does it ever attach to plants.
    Blackout will hurt it also but is not needed.

    This is a very simple thing that will help rid you of the algae, cost you next to nothing(paper towel cost) and greatly improve plant health(large water changes).

    I suppose some folks might try H2O2 and Excel, but I think the peper towel trick has those beat hands down and is perfect for targeting only the algae, rather than worrying about the plants and critters.

    You need to remove the algae that's there as best you can, then add nutrients back.

    There is no correlation between fish food and GD, I had it in tanks with no fish and with fish from what could gather.

    Same results.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  8. Tom Wood

    Tom Wood Guru Class Expert

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    Re: Fish Food = Green Dust

    Except, there is. In my tank if I feed the fish I get GD. No food, no GD. For months and years now.

    I thought you science types were trained to value evidence over theory? :p

    TW
     
  9. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Re: Fish Food = Green Dust

    Why can't I reproduce that theory/observation?

    Why don't I have it in tanks with lots of fish and cans till get in tanks with no fish at all?

    The other issue, I don't know if the paratmeters are the same as my own in your tank, I don't know if the CO2, KNO3 dosing, water changes etc are an issue or not.

    When I deal with folks in person, I can see the mistakes in 2-3 minutes.
    Fish feeding unless you have a loaded tank, I mean like a Discus per 10 gal or more, are not causing issues for folks.

    If they are not having trouble and I'm not able to reproduce things you say are true, there's something else occurring with your tank.

    That's the evidence and observations I'm looking at.
    It's like the old PO4 arguement, someone once said it causes algae, okay then....where is my algae?

    I cannot reproduce the same things you are seeing.

    I feed, so do many folks, they don't have it.
    You can inoculate the stuff to a tank, I still don't have it.
    I can't keep it alive for long.
    I feed fish food.

    I think that's a fair statement, that might not be what you want to hear, but that's what my observations about this algae are. Yours are different, you need to figure out why. What might you be doing that I am not?

    We both feed fish......I know I have the spores present, the test tank had it about a few months ago. I can go dump a bunch of food in there and not get it.

    Do you have a filter on the tank? Small or large? Fish food has NH4, other than that, there's not much that would induce the algae vs any other nutrient.

    You can dose NH4 to see.(you need a UV for GW).

    Some of the Evidence is good but does not always disprove nor support theory. Especially if you misapply the evidence.
    But what is the evidence really telling you? What can you really say about it and be sure?

    Misapplication occured/s with PO4, K+, NO3 and trace dosing quite often.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  10. Tom Wood

    Tom Wood Guru Class Expert

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    Re: Fish Food = Green Dust

    Well, okay, there's a correlation in -my- tank. I'm trying to figure out why.

    TW
     
  11. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Re: Fish Food = Green Dust

    Let's get down to it! :)

    Do you want to figure why or just get rid of it?
    That's the first question......

    Then go to step 2.

    I like "why" a lot. Most don't, they want to kill it and not deal with it and feed their fish.

    I think you can add a little more bio materials in the filter, water changes routines, paper towel wiping, pull the lighting or bend the reflectors away from the glass.

    I know that pesky algae bugs folks.
    Seems to occur in higher light PC systems, 2-5 w/gal.
    Old or new tanks.
    It's a zoospore former(they can swim around and reattach), it's genus is Akinosendemsus, does well at good nutrients levels for plants.
    Seldom grows on plants.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  12. Tom Wood

    Tom Wood Guru Class Expert

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    Re: Fish Food = Green Dust

    I'll go for why.

    A week ago I increased the PO4 to 4ppm, increased NO3 to 20ppm, added 20ppm K+, added CSM+B at 0.1ppm Fe, and verified CO2 is at 20+ppm. I change 20% of the water each week, test PO4 and NO3, then dose accordingly. Water out of the tap is 9.8 pH, treated with chloramines, is real cold right now, and not good for the fish at much more than 20% volume change at a time. I've been feeding relatively heavily just to provoke things.

    It's been a month since the last trim, so that needs to be done. So at the moment the tank is chock full of plants and there's little light hitting the glass. Where it does, there's a little GD. No other algae present. The plants are; lots of h. difformis and hydrocotyle, cabomba, bacopa, and a few crypts.

    I'm at 2WPG lighting using PC lamps in AHSupply reflectors. I've tried moving the lights back and it doesn't have any effect. The GD grows from top to bottom on the glass, so I don't see how bending the reflectors could ever keep all the light off of the front glass since it's just about all reflected light anyway. True, there's no GD where it is currently shaded by the heavy growth of plants, but that will change.

    Here's a pic before it got -really- overgrown (scroll down):

    http://aquabotanicwetthumb.infopop.cc/eve/ubb.x?a=tpc&s=4006090712&f=8006023812&m=5031070701

    I'm using a DIY PVC UGF under 4" of 2-3mm plain blasting grit substrate for mechanical filtration. CO2 is injected into a submersiable pump in the in-tank sump, so getting a higher concentration of CO2 would require adding a reactor, which is the last thing I can see that I've not tried.

    Thanks,

    TW
     
  13. chubasco

    chubasco Guru Class Expert

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    Re: Fish Food = Green Dust

    Tom, scrolling down, don't see a picture.

    Bill
     
  14. Tom Wood

    Tom Wood Guru Class Expert

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    Re: Fish Food = Green Dust

    It's the second to the last post.

    TW
     
  15. chubasco

    chubasco Guru Class Expert

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    Re: Fish Food = Green Dust

    Yeah, it rilly helps if you log in first, otherwise you get a red circle with a
    diagnol line thru it instead of the picture :eek: Tom, this is one of the tanks
    with UGF? What a showcase!

    Bill
     
  16. Tom Wood

    Tom Wood Guru Class Expert

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  17. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Re: Fish Food = Green Dust

    These RFUG's work quite well.
    They never really caught on that much but many Floruite, EC, FB and other substrate came out about the time I was suggesting them.

    I gave up on this after seeing that the lfourite wasd doing a better job and did not have to add anything like piping, tunes going down there, powerheads etc.Flourite was simpler and more effective.

    If you use plain sand I'd suggest doing these though and dosing the water column.

    I had a pic from way way back, before digital cameras I took of one.
    I might have it somewhere,

    It's CPVC, smaller than the PVC, cost about 10$ to make almost any size you want. I maded a simple grid pattern all the way around like a big loop and then added Tees to add the middle pipes.

    I also always made the grid about 1-1/.5 " less so it'll never show against the glass.

    Works very well.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr


    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  18. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Re: Fish Food = Green Dust

    I'd lower the PO4/up the traces.
    50% weekly water changes and get some warm water!!
    But if not possible, certainly maintain the biomass, keep it the same or as close as you can.

    I do not think the CO2 reactor vs this method will make any significant changes.

    It's not an alga that seems to be able to repress with good plant nutrient levels for many people. I wish it would grow for long peroids.
    Perhaps I can change a few things and try it again.

    You can use NH4 in place of the fish food also.
    See how it responds to that, do not add much!!!
    Tiny bit every day. Then you can remove the food issue and make it a NH4 issue.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  19. JadeButterfly

    JadeButterfly Guru Class Expert

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    Re: Fish Food = Green Dust

    Oh...no wonder why green spot has a cut off line thru the glass.
     
  20. Tom Wood

    Tom Wood Guru Class Expert

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    Re: Fish Food = Green Dust

    It's still too early to conclude, but I think the Tetramin may have been at fault all along. I recently switched to Omega One and the problem has all but vanished. Fairly high up on the list of ingredients in Tetramin is 'algae meal'. That's dried algae. Hmmm.....

    TW
     
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