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Re: Hair Algae

Matt wrote:
> I'm assuming the black hair like algae growing on the edges of the leaves on
> my microsword, jungle val, amazon sword and anubius is due to excess iron or
> nutrients, however it's very difficult to remove since it doesn't grow
> bigger than a half a centimeter and i think effects growth. My Bristlenose
> pleco dont touch the stuff, I'm wondering if there's any fish other than
> SAE's that i could fit in a 10 gallon to take care of this stuff. I also

Sounds more like BBA (Black Beard Algae).  In my experience, it's primarily due 
to excess phosphates in the water.   Excess iron normally shows as long stringy
green hair algae.  

SAEs eat it quite well, and Dwight reports that the American-Flag fish also eat
it.   I saw my japonica shrimp eat it a little, but they wouldn't be able to
eat enough to make a real dent.

> like to go away. Would increasing the light level also get rid of it, I
> heard it's a 'dark' algae, and i only have 8 hours of light.

No, more light probably wouldn't do it.  You need to resolve why your plants
aren't using up the phosphates.  

> alggae eating fish that would solve the problem in a 10 gallon tank. I have
> 0 ammonia, 0 nitrite, and 0 nitrates and a weekly water change of 50% of

The zero nitrates is a key here.  If the nitrates really are zero (or at least
very low), then the tank is "nitrate limited".  That will stop the plants from
growing, meaning all the other nutrients in the water (like phosphates) are 
available for the algae.   You might want to consider adding nitrates (using
KNO3).   That will allow the plants the grow more, using up the phosphates.  The
idea is to make your tank phosphate limited, at which point algae will be more
effectively controlled.  

> water, and dose .5 of a tsp of kent freshwater (i was doing a tsp before)
> but now i cut it in half and have risen the light to 9 hours a day.

As long as Kent Freshwater doesn't contain phosphates, it's not the cause of

I've got an article on my website discussing KNO3 dosing.   

Chuck Gadd