Help! Black brush algae

Carissa

Guru Class Expert
Jun 8, 2007
678
0
16
I have what's getting to be a serious infestation of black brush algae in my 10g. It started on one side of the tank where I didn't realize it was getting about 30 minutes a day of direct sunlight. The java fern on that side started growing it along the edges and now it has spread to my crypts in the same area and it's growing on the wall, and now it's getting to my hygro, and it's also on the other side of the tank now too in smaller tufts. I blocked the sun from that side and I'm going to step up my water changes and fertilization (lately it's been about every two weeks), but how do I eradicate this stuff besides doing what I'm doing?? It's a non-co2 tank with 18 watts of light. Excel is not an option, I can't get it here and it would cost me a fortune to ship it in.
 

Aknickolai

Lifetime Members
Lifetime Member
Jan 11, 2008
21
0
1
I am battling BBA too, tough stuff. You can make a weak bleach/water solution (1:20 I think) remove the plants from the tank and soak them in the solution for a 1-3 minutes. The BBA will change color to red/white quickly indicating it is pretty much dead. Rinse the plants in tap water, put them in a separate container with lots of dechlorinator and replant. The key is figuring out the cause and eliminating it, I can't help you too much there.
 

tinkerman

Subscriber
Dec 8, 2007
126
2
18
Moorhead,MN
Carissa can you get hydrogen peroxide where you are? A lot of stuff I've read and delt with hydrogen peroxide works about the same as excel. As far as I know it is safe to use in the tank so you can spot treat to if need be.
 

Carissa

Guru Class Expert
Jun 8, 2007
678
0
16
I tried the peroxide thing last night and today. So far, no visible change in the bba. I may try the bleach thing tomorrow if I still don't see any change. It's not infesting the crypts really bad, so I think I'll just prune the worst leaves and see what happens with that and the water changes, fert dosing etc. The java ferns are easy to remove from the tank to do a dip, better for me to do that than to just let them die as I'm afraid they will. They're really nice bushy plants. Or, the other option is, I could move them temporarily into a co2 injected tank. Do you think this would kill it or would it just infest the other tank?
 

VaughnH

Lifetime Charter Member
Lifetime Member
Jan 24, 2005
3,011
94
48
85
Sacramento, CA
CO2 only helps BBA to grow faster. The good effect of CO2 is that it allows the plants to grow at the maximum rate the light intensity drives them to, and it is the fast growing plants that discourage BBA from even starting. (My opinion)

Excel squirted directly on the colonies of BBA will kill off most of it, but I have found that it doesn't always work that way. But, squirting it on, day after day for weeks does seem to be very effective.
 

Carissa

Guru Class Expert
Jun 8, 2007
678
0
16
Yeah, that's kind of what I thought about the co2. I tried the bleach thing on a small piece of java fern and one piece of hygro, it seemed to me to lighten in color but hasn't actually died yet. Tomorrow I'll check it again and try again maybe with a longer soak if I don't see any major change by tomorrow.
 

Hilde

Junior Poster
Sep 16, 2008
14
0
1
What country are you in?

Have you looked for Florish excell on EBay?

Have you looked for glutaraldehyde? There is an artcle glutaraldehyde instead of excel here:
http://www.aquaticplantcentral.com/...iasts/31615-glutaraldehyde-instead-excel.html

How about using potassium permanganate? It is available at Sear's and Ace Hardware in water softener's and supplies section? Potassium Permanganate(pp) is a strong oxidizer. Like all chemicals you should wear protective eye wear and gloves.

I dosed 30ml of PP 9/23/6 after a water change then 10ml daily.
On 9/25/6 the angelfish spawned so it seems to have no effect on the fish.
9/27/6 the sword plant started growing fast.3-4" growth of new leaves daily.this plant has not grown much in the last 3 weeks. Allen, aquatic plant central.

I did a 20 min soak on some large sword plants that have hair algae, Crystalview , aquatic plant central.

Opps!! I just realized this thread is a bit old. But is this idea a good one?
 

Tom Barr

Founder
Staff member
Administrator
Jan 23, 2005
18,695
736
113
We used PP back in the late 1990's as a milder version of Bleach, does the same sort of thing.

Regards,
Tom Barr
 

Hilde

Junior Poster
Sep 16, 2008
14
0
1
How about potassium nitrate, KNO3, and hydrogen peroxide, for excell. KNO3 and excel helped me get rid of it. Spectride stump remover is 100% KNO3.