Bleach treatment of algae

On Thu, 6 Jul 1995 Aquatic-Plants-Owner at actwin_com wrote:

> From: krombhol at freud_inst.com (Paul Krombholz)
> Date: Thu, 6 Jul 1995 11:38:22 +0600
> Subject: Re: Aquatic Plants Digest V1 #165
> I really find it hard to believe that a fur-like algae survived the bleach
> treatment.  Was it a 5% dilution of liquid bleach, such as Clorox or Purex?
> This would be, for example, 50 ml of bleach in 1 liter.  Was the plant
> submerged in this solution and stirred around for a minumum of 2 minutes?
> A sword plant should be able to survive 3 to 4 minutes without serious
> damage.  Are you sure that the algae you noticed that morning had been on
> the leaves when you treated the plant?  Is there a possibility that it
> could have got on the plant after you put it in the aquarium?   Are the
> 'hairs' of the algae tough and firmly attached, or are they soft, slippry
> and capable of being rubbed off with your finger?  The fur-like algae that
> I know is Oedogonium.  It is tough and firmly attached, and I know that 2
> minutes in the bleach solution kills it.
I used "Javex" liquid bleach in a 1 to 19 solution and soaked the plants 
for 2 min.  I then rinced the plants under running tab water for a few 
minutes and then washed them in a solution of de-chlorine additive. I did 
not see algae before the treatment so it is possible that the algae got 
there after I put them in the tank. I am not sure where it could come 
from though, since it was a new tank and the algae appeared after only 2 
days. The fur-like algae appears soft and can be rubbed off with a sponge 
or something. They are still there, but I think one of my oto. affinis 
has taken an interest in them and started munching on the affected 
leaves. I just hope I cleaned the bleach off completely as not to kill my 

> <snip> 
> nitrates or phospahtes being too high.  I keep green water and soft
> attached algae (including bluegreens) from being a problem by having
> daphnia and snails.
You mean you keep daphnia in the tank? Do they not get eaten by your 
fish? What type of snails do you keep? I have been looking for and 
killing snails I find on new plants I buy because I am concerned they 
might eat my plants.

> It isn't true that the spores of hair algae are everywhere and will
> reinfect your tanks. You may pick up hair algae from soil If you collect it
> near a lake or pond.  Otherwise, the only major route of infection is by
> way of new plants, although there is a possibility that it could be carried
> in with new fish or snails.
> It is worth the effort to get rid of hair algae.  When hair algae is
> present, you are forced to crowd and starve your plants to keep it from
> taking over. It is a serious pest that we in the aquatic plant hobby do not
> have to put up with.
Hair algae is not the same as brush/red algae, right? I thought many of 
the "generic" algae eaters like hair algae and that it's not as bad as 
the red stuff.

 John Y. Ching (jyching at watnow_uwaterloo.ca)    |
 Pattern Analysis and Machine Intelligence Lab	| 
 Department of Systems Design Engineering      	| 
 University of Waterloo, Canada            	|