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Re: Monster Hair Algae
I have never had this one as a plague but it was healthy and I could not
scrub it off a particular piece of driftwood I had hanging at the back of
the tank. It was protected by hornwort that kept the angelfish from it.
Every time I removed the extra hornwort the angels found it and munched
away. The hornwort was back in a couple days so the angels did not have a
chance to take it back completely. After I added CO2 using a gas tank, no
more hair algae. I do now have SAEs, swordtails and platies that enjoy fine
leaved green plants [grrr] so maybe that is the reason it has not appeared
since. That tank was not fertilized much and also had green fuzzy on the
sword leaves [in spite of otos and snails] and a little green spot on the
One of my female swordtails is a terrific algae eater, I even saw her
pecking at BGA when it was a plague in my tank. It would be nice if there
was some way you could tell which fish would be more interested in picking
at algae when you were looking at them in the store! Maybe choose ones that
are busy picking while they are in the store tank? They do seem to vary in
their interest in algae.
Why is your nitrate so high? With the few fish in the tank, plants plus
thriving hair algae it could be very low. That much nitrate is bad for fish,
is it an old test that could be testing incorrectly? Is there a lot of
nitrate in your tap water? What plants do you have in the tank beside the
non thriving sword plants?
The swords are just maintaining, waiting for conditions to improve. Are the
roots okay or rotting? New leaves put up? More light is the key thing they
would like to see first, I bet. A small piece of Jobe's fern and palm
fertilizer stick near the roots would be the next pick me up.
Kathy in Southern California
40 gallon tank. Fish population: 1Platy and 4 Ottos (that will be moving
soon) (and twenty bzillion assorted Malayan Trumpet and Pond snails).
Lighting: 2 30w fluorescent bulbs that came with the hood. Fertilization:
none to speak of except for the laterite I added when I set up the tank,
and maybe some fish food every now and then (Some Amazon swords I've had
for nearly a year are still only about 3" across!).
Water (as of 8/16/01) pH: 7.5 Ammonia: 0 Nitrites: 0 Nitrates: 125
As you can see, there's some room for improvement. :-D Besides the hair
algae, there's virtually no algae to speak of, so I think I'm going to
take to Otto's back to the store (if I can catch them...). After looking
at the suggestions, I'm starting to think about trying more platies to
see if they'll eat the hair algae. So far I've only seen one poster
I have a feeling that some people are going to start sending me ten-page
emails detailing what I'm doing wrong. :-)
Tanks a lot! ;-)
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