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[APD] Re: SAEs, Algae fix and copper

From: "Eric Wahlig" <ewahlig at earthlink_net>
>  I don't really like Siamese algae eaters all that much
>>Is there some problem with SAE in a planted tank that I should be aware
>>I have a few in my tank and find the fascinating the way they pick at the
>>substrate and plants like chooks in a pen.
>>They don't seem to eat the live plants at all.

They do. If they don't find algae they will turn to any mosses. Since I
added three this year I just can't grow moss properly anymore. I had heard
so many other aquatic gardeners praise them that I had to keep some. The
SAEs not finding any algae have turned to the moss leaves leaving just the
thread like stems around that don't look good at all! Funnily they seem to
prefer Java to Christmas, but now that has almost dissapeared they are going
for the second choice. At least SAEs look good. And I have'nt had any BBA or

In the past I had used an algae killer by a well known German company, that
guaranteed it would not harm plants or fish. I believed them to my
detriment. The algae was killed but the plants suffered. Photosynthesis
stopped (no oxygen prodn)
Growth stopped for a couple of weeks, and the ferns (Marsilea and Java)
almost died out completely. They were starving. They only picked up again
when the effects of the chemical wore off. Plenty of water changes helped.
Never trust labels again.

I did'nt have half the trouble when I used copper sulphate before that, and
it solved my BBA and Staghorn algae permanently. (it can be bought from any
Agricultural/garden shop - its normally used as a fungi/bacteriacide in the
field/garden.) I used a syringe to direct a tiny quantity on areas that
supported the algae, never going over a total of 3ppm in the aquarium, for a
couple of weeks. NB I didn't have any livebeares then, and all snails were

It has been many months now since I had an algae problem. Nutrient
limitation is the best algae prevention in my opinion. Just enough for the
plants good growth (slower is better than faster: less pruning, less dosing,
less wasted nutrients, less work). I do have mollies( for soft
algae),ottos(diatoms) and ramshorns (encrusted types) and tadpoles but
nutrient management is what really counts.

Blaming DIY CO2 does not make much sense. CO2 is CO2, no matter the source.
Quantities may vary, but DIY CO2 is probably the easist thing to manage.


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