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[APD] RE: Straw hehaw

> > That one is interesting. It says that DOC produced by the decomposition
> >barley in the presence of both oxygen and light causes the formation of
> >oxygen atoms that then form hydrogen peroxide in the water. The authors
> >postulate that the peroxide kills algae, based on studies of peroxide and
> >algae. They also indicate that when algae is suppressed then plant
> >is
> >enhanced, *not* that when plant growth is enhanced then algae is 
> >suppressed.
>  Exactly, perhaps they should look at it from our perspective.
>  Not the peroxide recurring nonsense as Hieber points out, but the fact
>  that in shallow waters, like ponds, the raise in DOC gives the plants
>  the advantage and the algae decline?
>  // Daniel. 

Well you can do each of these easy enough.
Humic and Fluvic acids= DOC.
Adding table sugar to water = DOC
Adding rotting cuttings= DOC
DOC is fairly non descript. 
Adding peroxide directly to the water to kill Green water?
Does that give an advantage?

The issue here is one of the species and habitat of the algae in question,
namely green water, phytoplankton.
BS does not do anything from what I've seen and about 50% of all the 10-12
studies I looked had conflicting reports on efficacy.

Now, having said that, folks love the idea of BS, I think it's something
that's more socially accepted(it's an natural non herbicide approach),
rather than a true effective agent. But adding a bunch of rottening organic
matter to your tank is worse that a herbicide and producing a large die off
of plant/algae material is the main concern when killing/controlling weeds
or algae in lakes and ponds. 

Several bales of rotting straw in your pond that will lower O2 levels vs
some algae?
>From an aesthetic point of view that straw looks awful but you can
submerged the bales, you can also place it in a sump or filter etc.

Adding some more floating plants and that will address the issue without
the need for straw. This means actually balancing the tank/lake etc to
start with rather than trying to over load the system with few plants and a
high rate nutrient inputs, something will grow there, you have a choice of
They(researchers) don't suggest this solution of adding plants and most
often do not discuss the submersed or floating aquatic macrophyte biomass
in relation to the surface area of the lake/pond. Many only have a few
emergent plants in a relatively small littoral zone or none at all.

Sort of important don't you think in our context?
Try keeping algae at bay when you only have a few plants in a  large tank.
Few plants+ fish, other inputs from the soil, improper fertilizers => ample

One of the studies offered a better notion, adding BS increased the smaller
rotifer populations which eats algae(tiny herbivores).
These are very small and we are generally unable to see them without a

Adding Daphnia in a thicket of weeds will also provide cover for the
daphnia(preventing them from being eaten), and they are effective green
water herbivores(they typically clear water in the summer in many lakes and
ponds), or __a biocontrol agent__. Peroxide kills plants also......at the
concentrations released by BS, this will not
occur...............but...............at that same concentration, will that
influence algae at all?

That's a major question and a very speculative issue.
Algae have many mechanisims to deal with oxidative stress from high O2
levels as well as H2O2.
Sure, you can overload any algae, and plant for that matter if you add
I've added H2O2 to algae/plant tanks.
I've added high O2 as well.

As far as phytoplankton and epiphytic algae, I do not see the effect in an
The aquarium is much much more controlled than a pond.

The dynamics are different(heck, the lighting(very high lighting) for one,
one of the main things that makes GW persistant).
Correlating field studies to tank studies is not always applicable.
It does however, help to show where to look and investigate further in a
more complicated system.

I'd like to see a study that compared 5000 gal ponds with BS vs adding
50-70% floating plant cover and see which worked better.

If you have a pond with plants, well, heck, add plants!
If you have a high bioload in a non planted Koi pondand want it to remain
that way, add a UV or add a wetland bog filter.
These are nice, and easy to make and maintain.that is a long term solution
that balances the system well, unlike folks that overload the system , then
complain they have algae............

These are natural "green ways" of controlling algae rather than adding a
bunch of rotting straw to your pond, basically poullting it.
I can sell my plants(who buys mulm and rotting straw?) thus cost little,
they look better(wetland bog filters or in the pond), they are easy to
remove the excess growth, they export the nutrients that build up in the
pond(BS will never do this), folks.............add plants and address their

If you want something that works, that is non chemical, and you cannot have
plants added, I have solutions for that also.
There are many things you use in the tool box, but I think BS has gotten
more play than it deserves. 

Add more plants and less BS.

Tom Barr

3rd annual Plant Fest July 8-14th 2005!
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