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Re:Green water notes
- To: <Aquatic-Plants at actwin_com>
- Subject: Re:Green water notes
- From: Thomas Barr <tcbiii at earthlink_net>
- Date: Mon, 27 Aug 2001 22:55:44 -0700
- In-Reply-To: <200108271948.f7RJm3M22548 at actwin_com>
- User-Agent: Microsoft-Outlook-Express-Macintosh-Edition/5.02.2022
> If I read your post correctly, you are recommending that it is important to
> have a fully functional biological filter with a healthy colony of
> nitrifying bacteria in it as a sort of hedge against green water????
It does help.
I think the notion that I'm saying is more that the bacteria and the algae
are in competition, not the plants so much (at least for the NH4).
People seem to get hung up on that part. The small amount of NH4(for a
certain amount of time ...say... 8 hours) is a signal for the GW to start
growing. The bacteria would be able normally to stop this and remove the
build of of NH4.
Give the bacteria decent home like the plants and the algae will have two
different groups beating on it. NH4 is something that's good to have at
0.00ppm readings. NO3 is not.
Bacteria typically in most competition experiments will over take and out
compete algae. These are classic competition models.
Here's some info on saltwater aquatic biologist (I'm interested more in FW
systems and the plant macrophytes added to this whole mess)
Woods Hole: My former prof worked here for some time.
Who's this sound like?
An interesting Journal BTW.
And the project director I work for/with at UC just got a job at SCRIPPS
Institute in San Diego. She didn't think she'd get but what do you know? She
did. Bully for her. She deserved it.
The Oceans and the FW environments(Water shed,drinking/irrigation/recreation
etc) are similar in many ways and both are of **extreme** importance to
There are many stones to turn over to get to the bottom of "WHY"... but is
seems plausible. N bacteria and desmids may not run each other to excluding
one or the other or compete much in the lab. I think they will though.
The lighting is key here as is the disturbance and the NH4.
But consider what happens when you run a tank at 0.0ppm of NO3's/NH4 and add
little food(No waste or NH4). Low food for the bacteria and nothing for them
to live on. Right? So the filter is not as heavily colonized. When a spike
of NH4 comes into the tank the bacteria are weakened and it takes them some
time to "get going" and this is the opportunity the GW is looking for to get
a foot hold. Perhaps.
A similar thing happens when you have a clogged filter and/or no bio media.
No food(wastewater) or/and surfaces for the bacteria. But you need the high
light combination to go with this weaken bacteria. Low light tanks will not
experience this nearly as severe.
> bacterial mass in the filter should be able to get any excess ammonium
> BEFORE the algae can go ballistic.
> The higher plants would either have to
> compete with the biofilter for ammonium
** The high lighting of PC combined with the NH4 spike.**
That's the key to much of the GW. I couldn't get it to go in the low light
tanks I have. Well, without adding lethal amounts of NH4 which I have not
done since I have fish/shrimp. Didn't try that.
But if your worried about it, get a UV and turn it on once in awhile after
you play around in your tank. That's another way. I'm suggesting good
NO3's/feeding your fish(NH4), good filter and water movement->CO2/nutrients
getting to the plants disruption of boundry surface layers on leave's
The worst that can happen is you add more fish(or feed more) and a tad more
KNO3. The other way is more about worrying if your going to get GW. Either
method requires good stable amounts
> or settle for using nitrate (which
> of course, they can do), that the biofilter would produce. In some cases
> this could require, in addition to the mechanical maintenance of the
> biofilter (flow rates, thruput, etc.) that folks might have to add ammonium
> to their tanks (in measured amounts of course, monitored by a good test
Naw, I think I'm so leary of getting into that! I think the NH4 produced
should be from fish waste only(if your going to have fish that is...some
folks have only snails etc). The NH4 is immediately sucked up and out of the
solution this way. Any real residual will cause GW. Basically it needs to be
added in very small amounts throughout the week and the best safest method
is with fish (their waste). I have NH4SO4 sitting right here. I'm not sure
if I feel that lucky:) It might be good for some real nutty folks with no
fish or life in their tanks besides plants and that really want to try and
keep a very tight wrap on it...........but I'd rather juggle some anthrax
vials. Not practical for folks one bit IMO. Someone will kill all their fish
and blame me or the APD or never grow plants again because of the NH4.......
> Either way, green water problems should be more manageable?
I think if folks can kill it first(blackout etc) then add more bio
filtration, keep decent NO3 levels, have some decent water movement and some
of the list on the last post, you should be able to get rid of it.
Remember though GW has many ways to get rid of it and it does not harm
plants. This makes it an ideal alga to look into for planted aquariums on
> James Purchase