Unknown Algae

jonathan11

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I seem to have a white/opaque type algae in a new 46 gallon tank I've just begun to set up. It is on a sandblasted grapevine stick I purchased at my lfs. It appears to be similar to hair type algae, wavery in the water, and is sticking to only this stick, java moss, nana petites attached to this stick. Is this the onset of hair algae, or something else? Your comments (and cures) would be appreciated. Thx in advance.

Walter :gw :D
 

JoeBanks

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Re: Unknown Algae

I had the same thing on a piece of driftwood. I assumed it was a fungus, as it was completely white. It disappeared on its own after a few months.
 

jonathan11

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Re: Unknown Algae

Thx, Joe. I got disgusted and removed all plants and sticks, rinsed them off, bleach where needed, drained and refilled tank. Everything seems ok, water is clear, so are the sticks :D . Still wondering what is was and where it came from.

Walter
 

Tom Barr

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Re: Unknown Algae

It's a fungi.

Wonder if higher Boron would kill it and not harm the fish?

I know boron will mess up any thing with Chiton cell walls like ants/bugs and fungi.

Pre soak the wood good, scrub etc.

Regards,
Tom barr
 

JoeBanks

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Re: Unknown Algae

I bleached my driftwood several times to kill it, but it would always come back. It specifically grew on a part of the wood that was lighter than the rest of the branch. I would guess that the light part of the wood was relatively "fresh" and still had enough decaying matter to feed the fungus. When the fungus disappeared, the wood that it grew on darkened to the same color as the rest of the branch.
 

Tom Barr

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Re: Unknown Algae

Seems if you soaked the wood in Boric acid, that's available at a drug store, the wood will absorb it(especially if you used warm/hot water and boric acid) and that will prevent the wood from getting any fungus for many weeks/months.

This is what is done for wood to prevent fungi attack on land.

Since Boron is relatively non toxic at high levels in an Aquarium, seems it should be fine there with normal water changes.

Regards,
Tom Barr
 

VaughnH

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Re: Unknown Algae

A boric acid soak seems like a good precautionary step with any new "driftwood" added to the tank. Now, I just have to remember that. Would that drop the pH in the tank as the boric acid leaches out? Probably not, due to the tiny amount that would leach out.
 

Tom Barr

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Re: Unknown Algae

Well, Boron is not that bad to other critters(shrimps and daphnia, they have Chitonous exoskeletons etc but not fish/plants) and water changes take care of most things.

Main thing is to warm the wood, let it soak in, then add to the cooler tank, the fungi will not like it. The amount needed is likely pretty small to retard fungi, I think small enough not to both shrimps etc.


Regards,
Tom Barr
 

jonathan11

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Re: Unknown Algae

Ongoing battle with this crud. Noticed the fungus has started again. Everything you said so far, Joe, has been on the money. Removed the stick, cleaned off the fungus, immersed said stick in a 22 gallon bucket of warm water, added boric acid. Will let soak overnight, rinse off in the morning, stick it back in the tank. I'll let you know how it turns out. GRRRRRRRRRRRRRR!!

Walter :gw :D
 

jonathan11

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Re: Unknown Algae

Bah, humbug!!!! Two days after the soaking, I'm afraid the crud is back. Somewhat disturbed, the stick looked so nice in the store, didn't appear to need any cleaning at all. I've soaked other logs, roots, but it was readily apparent from the beginning that they definitely needed to be soaked/leached. So, out it comes, into another bucket for a few weeks. Any idea what solution other than boric acid that might help get rid of this crud? And would the 2 weeks or so be an adequate time frame?

Walter :gw :D
 

VaughnH

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Re: Unknown Algae

You could try boiling the wood. Maybe the heat would be enough to kill the fungi. Or, perhaps, boiling it, adding the boric acid to the very hot water, and letting it soak for a couple of hours. If all else fails, add the piece of wood, with other pieces, to the fireplace, add some paper and apply a lit match. Then, head to the LFS for another piece.
 

JoeBanks

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Re: Unknown Algae

E-bay is a good source for driftwood. Most of the people selling there are taking it out of local rivers and lakes, so it has been properly aged.