This site is supported by the advertisements on it, please disable your AdBlocker so we can continue to provide you with the quality content you expect.
  1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.
  2. Unfortunately for Photobucket users, things have changed in a big way as of June 26th they are rolling out a $399 per year subscription fee for those who want to hotlink images from Photobucket’s servers to display elsewhere.
    This does not mean it only affects this site, It now means that billions of images across the Web now display an error message instead of the image in question. :(
    https://barrreport.com/threads/attention-photobucket-users.14377/
    Dismiss Notice

Still fighting algae

Discussion in 'Algae Control' started by DavidR, Apr 3, 2005.

  1. DavidR

    DavidR Prolific Poster

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2005
    Messages:
    38
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hi everyone! Thought I'd share some of my problems with you all. :(

    I've been keeping planted tanks for several years now with great success. I've even witnessed the beauty of the EI method (well before Mr. Barr came up with it), and it resulted in the most incredible growth rates and plant beauty I've ever seen! I literally dumped in nutrients and I got nothing but pearls and $50 credits at the LFS every week. But after a move, I've been fighting algae for about 9 months now. I just can't seem to outcompete it. So here I am to ask for some help!

    100g
    Fish: 8" Green Terror, 3-3" Green Severums, 1 3" Midas, 1 4" CL & 5 small CL's, 1 6" pleco (none of them bother my plants, but I think they appreciate them, particularly as shelter)
    Plants: Lots of large swords, incl. 2 mother plants, vals, crypts, java fern; covers 70% of tank. I've got to leave the foreground open for feeding & swim space.
    Filtration: Eheim 2026 + AC500 w/2 sponges
    Lighting: 5-55w AHsupply PC's (275 watts)
    pH: 6.4
    KH: 12-13 dH; GH: 16 dH
    NO3: varies from 5ppm after wc to 10-20ppm at end of week
    PO4: .25ppm (after wc)-? I'm stuggling keeping this up, but I'm currently dosing daily in large amounts, about 1/2 tsp now. Anytime I begin to see GSA, I dose pretty heavy.
    Trace: TMG @ 20mL every other day
    Compressed CO2

    Problems: BBA and some light green fuzz on the glass after about 4 days from wc, but usually not too bad. When I get some GSA, I dose PO4 and it's gone the next day, but now that I'm dosing PO4 daily, I'm getting none.

    My issues: I know I got the BBA while dialing in two tanks from one regulator. But I can't seem to get it to stop growing! I've gotten the pH down to around 6.0 by bumping up the CO2 before the fish begin acting funny, and have even held it at 6.2, but this damned algae just won't stop (and this is a LOT of CO2 being used!)! I prune, I bury the gravel covered in bba, I clean, do massive weekly water changes (70%), but nothing will make it stop! The plants pearl like crazy every single day, but the BBA spreading on the gravel is about to drive me insane! I do not use Jobes, but use Seachem root tabs from time to time. What do you see amiss here?
     
  2. GreenStuff

    GreenStuff Prolific Poster

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2005
    Messages:
    62
    Likes Received:
    0
    Re: Still fighting algae

    Hi David,
    I've had a battle with bba for years and have found the only sure way to get rid of it is to clean the days lights out of your tank. Remove every leaf that has it and replace plants if need be. Clean the gravel really well, along with the filter and hoses. I finally did all of that PLUS covered my gravel with some fresh stuff just to let the plants get a head start on the darn stuff.
    Then make sure your CO2 and nutrients are plentiful with lots of fast growers.
    .....and then do it all again. .....a couple more times. ....keep after it.
    How's that Tom??? :)
     
  3. Tom Wood

    Tom Wood Guru Class Expert

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2005
    Messages:
    139
    Likes Received:
    0
    Re: Still fighting algae

    If there is any driftwood in the tank, try removing it.

    TW
     
  4. Paul

    Paul Guru Class Expert

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2005
    Messages:
    169
    Likes Received:
    0
    Re: Still fighting algae

    :confused: :confused: Why?
     
  5. Tom Wood

    Tom Wood Guru Class Expert

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2005
    Messages:
    139
    Likes Received:
    0
    Re: Still fighting algae

    I've seen a correlation between driftwood and BBA in all my tanks. I think it may be a component in a combination of factors that includes local water chemistry. When I removed the driftwood I had no more BBA.

    TW
     
  6. Paul

    Paul Guru Class Expert

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2005
    Messages:
    169
    Likes Received:
    0
    Re: Still fighting algae

    Ok, I took my wood out last night and replaced it with vine wood, I will check to my BBA goes :)
    thanks for that
     
  7. DavidR

    DavidR Prolific Poster

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2005
    Messages:
    38
    Likes Received:
    0
    Re: Still fighting algae

    It's funny that you mention the driftwood. I've got a huge piece in there that is just covered. It was ok when this tank was low light/non-CO2, but as soon as I upped the light & added CO2, I've never been able to shake the BBA.

    I'm kind of thinking that I'm getting a handle on the BBA on the plants, but the BBA on the wood will not budge. Very intersting. My GT's gonna miss hiding behind it.

    In another tank, a 75g, I added some driftwood of the same type, AFTER a bleach treatment, and now I have BBA in it as well. I'm barely containing it, probably due to lower lighting & high CO2.

    If possible, could you elaborate a little more on your findings (the correlation)? I'd love to hear more about this! Time to go yank some driftwood.
     
  8. Tom Wood

    Tom Wood Guru Class Expert

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2005
    Messages:
    139
    Likes Received:
    0
    Re: Still fighting algae

    There's not much to tell really. I was fighting BBA in an earlier version of my 70 gallon and 'temporarily' removed the driftwood to leave it out in the sun. Less BBA, even on the gravel and equipment. Replaced the driftwood, more BBA. Hmmmm.... When I later set up my 90 and included driftwood, it got BBA. Removed the driftwood, no BBA. Well, well, well...

    Driftwood is a huge chunk of dead organic material. From what I can tell, BBA is an organism that is part of the 'rotting' process and is evolved to grow on dead/dying organic material. Also, if I have ANY plant that does so poorly that it sprouts BBA, that plant is yanked out and not used in the aquascape. If there isn't an organic (wood or plants) substance for it to grow on, it has a much harder time populating the non-organic (gravel, equipment) places and eventually dies off.

    Both my 90 and my 70 are now driftwood and BBA free. YMMV

    TW
     
  9. Paul

    Paul Guru Class Expert

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2005
    Messages:
    169
    Likes Received:
    0
    Re: Still fighting algae

    The only BBA I have is on my plants, didnt have any one the wood... it nearly killed all my plants at one point, I ended up starting again
     
  10. DavidR

    DavidR Prolific Poster

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2005
    Messages:
    38
    Likes Received:
    0
    Re: Still fighting algae

    Thanks for the info TW. I yanked the dwood out, pruned about 20 leaves or so off my anubias nana's, planted a nana foreground to take the place of the dw, pruned a few more leaves, did 70% water change, and dosed macros. The dw displaced a little over 5g of water. It was totally covered in BBA. This particular piece is/was essentially decaying. I don't think it was the "proper" type of wood for aquarium use.

    Interesting you say that Paul. I once had a tank decimated by BBA (first case), but the small piece of dwood I had in there (selected for aquarium use) was fine. Shortly after this, I realized the EI method, but of course, I didn't know it was a method in those days! I just kept pruning, changing water, and the CO2 pumping. The plants made a comeback in a big way!

    I just hope the same can happen to this tank. I'm looking to get some rarer swords & other rarer CA cichlid-safe plants and do an 'original' scape. I'm just afraid to get new plants with this BBA plague. I'll keep this updated. Many thanks for your suggestions.
     
  11. Tom Wood

    Tom Wood Guru Class Expert

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2005
    Messages:
    139
    Likes Received:
    0
    Re: Still fighting algae

    David,

    Hope that helps, you might keep up the water changes to flush the tank out well. Anubias was also a BBA problem plant for me unless it was kept in the deep shade, at which point there was no point in even keeping it. :p

    I see that you are in Texas (I'm in Austin) and that you recently moved. You may find that water in certain locations just won't mix well with certain plants. Rather than force a plant to live in water it doesn't like, which can bring on BBA, you might want to experiment and find which plants do well in the water you have. Cuts down on the frustration level. :D

    TW
     
  12. travdawg

    travdawg Guru Class Expert

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2005
    Messages:
    102
    Likes Received:
    0
    Re: Still fighting algae

    I have BBA in my 10 gallon, & it is all over a chunk of wood I have in the tank... it is here & ther eon my sword, & maybe a spot ofit on the glass, but its really non existant anywhere else.... The DW though, is covered.
     
  13. Tom Wood

    Tom Wood Guru Class Expert

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2005
    Messages:
    139
    Likes Received:
    0
    Re: Still fighting algae

    Take the DW out and see if that doesn't lead to the rest of the BBA dying off.

    TW
     
  14. ervis

    ervis Junior Poster

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2005
    Messages:
    22
    Likes Received:
    0
    Re: Still fighting algae

    Just a data point. I'm on the other end of the spectrum. I've got the cleanest chunks of wood on the planet, thanks to my recent Ancistrus cat (bushy nose pleco). The only place I can grow tiny tufts of BBA is on some slate and the heater elec. cord. For reference, the wood in my tanks is bog wood. It reddish brown and looks like it was once a root like structure.

    The wood was covered with green fuzzy algae before the introduction of mr. sucker. I had no BBA prior to that time, it showed up later.

    steve
     
  15. Tom Wood

    Tom Wood Guru Class Expert

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2005
    Messages:
    139
    Likes Received:
    0
    Re: Still fighting algae

    Thanks Steve,

    It seems to be a combination of factors that include the type of wood and the local water chemistry. BTW, I'm using pressurized CO2 24/7 in both my tanks and I keep the ferts in good condition, so it's not always a matter of neglect.

    TW
     
  16. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
    Staff Member Administrator Social Group Admin

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Messages:
    18,443
    Likes Received:
    302
    Re: Still fighting algae

    Didn't you say that you do not keep higher levels of CO2 Tom?
    I've yet to ever have BBA when my CO2 was good.

    Wood, equipment etc should be cleaned off if any algae is on it(except a forn of Cladophora perhaps).

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  17. Tom Wood

    Tom Wood Guru Class Expert

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2005
    Messages:
    139
    Likes Received:
    0
    Re: Still fighting algae

    It's not 'fish gasping high' if that's what you mean. It's in the 20ppm range. I run a little higher than (EDIT) 1 bubble per second per 40 gallons of water into water that is about 3 KH and get about 6.6 - 6.8 pH. That averages to about 20ppm CO2. I've turned the CO2 way up and not seen any difference in the BBA. There's something else going on.

    TW
     
  18. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
    Staff Member Administrator Social Group Admin

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Messages:
    18,443
    Likes Received:
    302
    Re: Still fighting algae

    What fish loading do you have?
    The CO2 sounds fine.
    I've seen some tanks with higher loading get BBA even though the CO2 was decent.

    Softer driftwoods certainly allow better BBA sites.
    Amano shrimps are vicious to BBA on wood IME as are SAE's(young and dumb ones).

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  19. Tom Wood

    Tom Wood Guru Class Expert

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2005
    Messages:
    139
    Likes Received:
    0
    Re: Still fighting algae

    Very light fish load, I have to add a lot of the NO3 as KNO3.

    I think the Amano shrimp and SAE thing is mostly a marketing fraud, the prices are so way out of line. It's best to just not induce the algae into the tank to begin with, IMO.

    TW
     
  20. travdawg

    travdawg Guru Class Expert

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2005
    Messages:
    102
    Likes Received:
    0
    Re: Still fighting algae

    As far as I can tell, my SAE has made very little, if any, impact on the BBA on my new tank. I rarely see it on the DW at all... Now maybe it is keepin it regulated in the other areas of the tank, but for the existing farm that I have, it seems to be doing very little.

    I would like to remove the DW from the tank, & try a new piece to see if it colonized on it as well. I just hate to throw out the narrow leaf java with it. I suppose replanting it would be an option, but wouldnt I just be moving the algae along with it?
     
Loading...

Share This Page