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Re: %&$@!&# algae

>   Ok I am having a serious algae problem. I thinks its my own fault. I wrote
>a week or two ago (rookie needs help) I was using a phosphate buffer to
>adjust ph. This causes algae bloom. ok stop using it do some water changes
>easy enough:( well I think I have more problems then that I have a new
>algae! :) It looks like black hairs growing mostly on plants, I read some
>where that this is usually caused by excessive iron. I am using a plant
>fertilizer that is high in iron. I can't seem to find a iron test kit
>anywhere in the great state of mississippi;| so now I have green algae
>growing all over my glass, rocks, and plants. as well as my new algae:) what
>should I do more water changes bigger? I was thinking 50% once a week.

What kind of plant fertilizer are you using? If it's a terrestrial plant 
fertilizer (miracle gro and the like), then that's probably your problem. 
If it's an aquatic-plant specific fertilizer than you're probably either 
short on some important ingredient (potassium is common), or the particular 
mix you're using may have too much of a particular ingredient for your 
particular tank+water combo.

Seachem makes an inexpensive iron test kit that works pretty well and is 
fairly easy to use. I think I got mine at Pet Warehouse (now drs 
foster&smith) for around $20. Most of the usual test kits you find in LFS 
places only test pH/nitrate/ammonia, sometimes hardness. The more advanced 
kits that are either more precise or test for less commonly tested 
parameters (like iron, CO2, etc.) are usually easier to get via mail order. 
Reef-oriented LFSes often have a wider selection of test kits though, and 
since most salt-water test kits are also OK for fresh water I suggest 
hunting around for a reef-oriented LFS in your area to check.

Waveform Technology
UNIX Systems Administrator