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Re: A different kind of algae
It sounds to me like blue-green algae. Its fairly normal to see an
outbreak a few months after a tank is first setup. Bluegreen algae can be
controlled by treating the tank with antibiotics. Erythromycin is most
commonly recommended, but I've also seen other antibiotics work. I just
wish I could feel comfortable telling someone to use antibiotics in their
tank. I've even seen copper work well, but it is rather toxic. As to the
cause of the outbreak...
I begun treatment today with 2.5 mg of Maracyn per L.
People here might disagree a little, but in my reading and experience,
bluegreen algae are pretty much ubiquitous. They only become dominant
organisms (= a problem) when extreme conditions allow them to outcompete
the plants and green algae. Simply changing aquarium conditions is not
usually effective in getting rid of them after they've established
themselves. You need to nuke them, and then change conditions so that
they won't again become dominant.
There were really no extreme condition changes between when the algae was
nonexistent and its current control over the aquarium. The only truly
noticeable change was in filtration, causing the ph to rise sharply. This
evidence seems to contradict what George Booth had to say about CO2
outgassing by trickle filters.
I suggest going back to your original filtration.
If cyanobacteria is indeed caused by extreme water conditions (ie excess
nitrates) then wouldn't it be best to attempt to control these conditions by
a more effective filtration method?
In addition, if you
feed fish in the tank you might want to increase water changes to at least
10 gallons/week and consider whether you are overfeeding your fish.
From what I have read on the subject, 10% per week seems to be the general
A sudden growth of green algae might be a promising sign that things are