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Re: [APD] Neglected tank

I am new to this list so sorry if I am redundant.  I had a similar problem two months ago.  I have a 150 gallon tank that had fast growing plants (mostly echinodorus).My tank had been stable for years but it was rapidly being overgrown by the swords and so I removed many of the fast growers and left only som crypts and anubias.  This created an inbalance and a hairy green algae developed on all leaves.  BTW I have about 500 watts ligthing and I am sure this helped with the algae explosion. 

I have been able to get the system rebalanced.  Here's what I did. 

I bought some fast growing bunch plants to soak up nutrients from my water column.
I have always had duck weed and riccia floating at the surface which I constantly removed.  When algae got our of control, I let the floating plants expand without removal - this blocked much of the excess light to the tank and also removed much of the nutrients in the water column that were feeding the algae.  
I also bought five 2 inch (juvenile) siamese algae eaters that looked a bit emaciated at the local hobby store.  Within one week, they rapdily plumped out and my hair algae is now gone. They have not eaten  my plants.   I have been backing off on the duckweed/riccia cover to let lite re-enter and so far everything is under control.

I have dealt with cyanobacter but I observed it to be bluish and not a bright greena while ago and antibiotics worked great (at 150gallon tank size it gets abit expensive).

Good luck and merry Christmas,


-----Original Message-----
From: Bob Baron <zxcvbob at charter_net>
To: aquatic-plants <aquatic-plants at actwin_com>
Sent: Sat, Dec 24, 2011 12:22 pm
Subject: Re: [APD] Neglected tank

I stocked the tank (20H) last week with 5 Rosy Barbs, 2 males and 3
emales, and they seem happy.  Their colors have brightened up
onsiderably from at the LFS, and whatever kind of nasty algae I have,
hey've been tearing it off the leaves much faster than it's growing
ack; they eat about half of it and the other half ends up in the
ilter.  All the plants are growing new leaves.  I did a 10% water
hange today mostly to get rid of debris on the bottom.  Looks like I
ight be back in business.  :-) I'll add a few grains of potassium
hloride to the filter canister today, and see if I can find some
otassium nitrate.
The algae starts out looking like BBA, then builds up thicker and
hicker into a gray-brown slime and the filaments go away.  There's also
ittle patches of brilliant green algae on the sand substrate; that's
robably cyanobacteria.  I wonder if the algae on the plants is a
mixture* of BBA and cyanobacteria, and maybe I need to zap the cyano
ith a antibiotic like erythromycin?  I do not want to do anything
rastic since it's all improving on its own.
Merry Christmas,
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