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What is this on my plants? Algae? Fungus? Protozoa?

Discussion in 'General Plant Topics' started by Cachimbo, Jul 19, 2011.

  1. Cachimbo

    Cachimbo Junior Poster

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    Hello,

    What is this strange thing on my Vallinerias?:confused: They contract and open again, just like "little white umbrellas".

    It is dispersing over to other plants also. Should it be of concern? How do I get rid of it?

    Any comments are welcome.:)
     
  2. dutchy

    dutchy Plant Guru Team
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    Looks like Hydra to me. Flubendazole kills them. Not dangerous to adult fish though.
     
  3. ShadowMac

    ShadowMac Lifetime Members
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    maybe hydra, generally the base is thicker than the tentacles and the tentacles don't look so "fuzzy". Can you provide a closer shot? Behavior sounds like hydras, too.

    I agree with dutchy, flubendazole will kill them. I only had trouble with them in a shrimp only tank. They feed on the other microorganisms in the tank. With fish, their food source tends to get eaten before they can "filter" it out of the water and don't proliferate. You may also be overfeeding your fish.

    Again, what dutchy said...not dangerous to adult fish, maybe very small fry. I'm still not totally sure on hydra... This is a good pic of hydra

    [​IMG]
     
    #3 ShadowMac, Jul 19, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 19, 2011
  4. Biollante

    Biollante Lifetime Charter Member
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    Word Does Not Maintain Format!

    Hi,

    Hydrazoan almost certainly, at first glance I thought it might be Obelia being in Costa Rica I suppose it could be a freshwater variety... Then I thought a little greener and could be hydra, Chlorohydra viridissimama...:confused:


    Without a better picture I would stick with Hydra vulgaris, sometimes called Hydra attenuata which can have from 4-12 tentacles, I cannot really tell from that picture other than there are more than four tentacles.

    I think I see “budding” that means they are happy, conditions are good (for them), budding is the quickest method of Hydrozoan reproduction.

    So many Hydrozoan, so quickly must mean a good source of food. Unless you are breeding critters, I suspect that were to look at your water closely you would find daphnia, a considerable population of copepods (Cyclops and such) or if not visible to the naked eye then rotifers and so forth.:)

    For the most part Hydra's present no particular risk to an aquarium unless you are breeding or hope to breed critters. Some of your fish are probably already enjoying them as a tasty treat.:D

    I tend to like to know the root causes before recommending any treatment.

    I yield of course to Duthcy's greater knowledge, but I dislike the use of Flubendazole aka Flubenol, Biovermin, Flumoxal, and Flutelmium (brand names), while it is an effective worm/parasite treatment it does not go to the root of the problem and can create other problems.

    • The picture implies a higher bio-load than you might imagine

    o the aggregate of Hydrozoans and their prey,

    o for that matter the prey of the prey.

    Since these are carbon based life forms they are by definition organic, a sudden die off leads to other problems. I have observed persistent algal problems some folks after using products such as Flubendazole, particularly when the underlying situation is not addressed.

    My ever-humble-potted-plant-opinion is that you should
    1. Enjoy the fascinating little creatures
    2. Reduce the amounts you are feeding your critters
    a. Consider not feeding for 4 days.
    3. Do a large water change, 50%-70%.
    a. If possible do three large water changes three days apart
    b. Continue weekly large water changes.​
    4. Clean out any dead or dying plant matter (check for dead critters as well)

    a. It is hard to tell from the pictures but I think I see some distress in your plants.
    5. Add activated charcoal, Chemi-Pure or Purigen to your filter.
    6. Give it at least two weeks.

    Should you wish to expedite the process, I recommend.
    1. 2-ppm KMnO[SUB]4[/SUB] for 4 hours
    2. With heavy organic material it may require more than one dose perhaps several.
    a. KMnO[SUB]4[/SUB] oxidizes organic material.

    Biollante

     
  5. Cachimbo

    Cachimbo Junior Poster

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    Thanks for the advice guys!!

    Here are some more closeup pictures.

    Still not sure if its Hydra. You guys know better so what do you think?

    [attachment=878:name]

    IMG_8999.jpg

    IMG_9000.jpg

    IMG_9001.jpg
     
    #5 Cachimbo, Jul 21, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 27, 2011
  6. Biollante

    Biollante Lifetime Charter Member
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    The Circle of Life

    Hi,

    Certainly Hydrozoans, I’ll stick with Hydra vulgaris.:gw

    Pretty sure those are Daphnia, probably, parvula, in large numbers, if those little white and/or orange(ish) dots are jerking around, abrupt moves, then I am pretty certain they are Daphnia, water fleas, though they are crustaceans, not fleas.

    The Hydras are going crazy because of all the Daphnia:eek:, the Daphnia, predators themselves:eek: are happy because of all the smaller critters available. :rolleyes:

    Healthy populations of Daphnia tend to indicate unstable water conditions, another clue!

    You have a very heavy bio load with unstable water conditions.

    • At minimum I would immediately add air stones.
    • A large water change.

    You should be able to identify many critters with a decent magnifying glass.

    Hint, hint--- with a decent magnifying glass you ought to be able to get a decent picture of the critters.

    • Secure the magnifying glass so your eye focuses on the edge of a leaf.
    • Focus your camera (close-up mode if it has it) on the image on the magnifying glass,
    • no flash.
    • The stronger the illumination on the leaf’s edges the better.

    Biollante
     
  7. Cachimbo

    Cachimbo Junior Poster

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    Hi Biollante,

    Just to let you know. I made a 60% water change and no fish food for 5 days and Hydrozoans are nearly gone. Very little of them.;)
    Remains for me curiosity of what effect would the air stones have on the hydras?
     
  8. ShadowMac

    ShadowMac Lifetime Members
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    I'm not Biollante, clearly, but think the airstones may be to add more oxygen to the system in order to speed up degradation of wastes by aerobic bacteria.
     
  9. Biollante

    Biollante Lifetime Charter Member
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    Bingo!---As "They" Do Say

    Hi Shawn, Cachimbo,

    Got it in one! :D

    Actually in addition to removing "stuff" from the tanks aeration is part of the "magic" of water changes.
    :gw

    When you start feeding again, feed carefully, smaller amounts.

    Biollante
     
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