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[APD] RE: Cyanophyta/BGA (Thomas Barr)

Hi all,

I had some BGA infestations which I could eliminate using the highly
patented TB approach. So I can attest that it worked in my case at least.
( see the grey slime thread some time ago ) I was low on nitrates and since
I cleaned up and increased N dosing it hasn't come back aggresively. The
moment I see the "first clearly visible" trace of BGA, I measure nitrate
with my worthless test kit and immediately increase the KNO3 dosing anyway.
This beats back the BGA in most cases within 24H. FWIW, when my plants are
slowing down and yellowing I can expect a BGA outbreak within1-2 weeks.( or
some plants get really red heads, hygrophilla is my main indicator )

I have gone through "thekrib" and this digest several times and could find
some controversy. From most references it is clear that BGA are excellent N
competitors since they seem to thrive in low nitrate environment.( I
believe same can be said for extremely high nitrate to a lesser degree,
but I have no evidence of that, pls correct me if wrong ). It is usually
stated that BGA can fix atmospheric N ( general BGA statement )
But Tom Barr wrote: ( and I thrust advice from experienced people ,
especially with a scientific or emperical approach)
"For our tanks, it appears as a result of high DOC with very low NO3.
 The genus that infest our tanks is Oscillitoria andf it is a filamentous
non heterocyst forming species, therefore it does not fix atmospheric
nitrogen, since heterocycst are require in this genus at least, to fix N2"

If the species we get in our tanks do not fix atmospheric N, then why are
BGA bacteria good competitors vs algae/higher plants? Are there other
mechanisms in BGA that can retrieve N from more compounded substances?  Or
do they need very little to survive and they strip the water for every
molecule that comes available from other processes? Anything else?

thanks for any advice!
suisoman Dirk

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