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Green Dust Algae

Rachel Sandage asked about Green Dust Algae -

I have been battling green dust algae since January in a new tank.  I appear
to be winning since I used to have to clean the green dust algae off of the
glass every other day in order to see the fish.  Now I have to do it only
weekly.  So the plague is finally burning out.  What did I do?  Nothing.
After reading everyone elses posts about UV, blackouts, massive water
changes, etc. I decided to just do the normal routine on the tank and see
what happened.  My reasoning was if I could get the plants to grow, that
they would suck the nutrients out of the tank and the algae would die.  My
plants are doing much better now.  They pearl after the first hour of having
the lights on and lots of new growth.  Even the anubias are putting out lots
of new leaves.

The tank is CO2 injected.  I add Excel and PMDD daily.  20% water changes
once a week to keep the nitrates down (it is a heavily stocked tank), though
with the plants growing faster, nitrate are starting to drop below 20 ppm
(I may have to start adding KNO3 which I do not include in my PMDD).  With
the faster growth, my phosphate levels are also starting to drop.  They had
been hovering around 2.5 - 3.0 ppm which is quite high.  Apparently, the
flake food I use is high in P and I do use a lot of it.

My water changes do not appear to have an effect on green dust algae, though
my plants give a little growth spurt after each water change.  Curious. I
wonder if  the tank is lacking in a trace mineral that the tap water
supplies.  There are no phosphates or nitrates in the tap water and since
the water company uses ozone for purification, no chloramine and very little

YMMV.  However, doing nothing is an option.  It does require patience, but
very little work.

Best Regards,

Roger Gordon