[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: Re: Matt's Algae

Lee wrote:

>Well, I've been lurking awhile, hoping to come across a solution to
>my own problem - this is the closest thread so far. I'm very green
>(excuse the pun) to this aquarium business, having had mine up &
>running just a few weeks: 50-gal, well planted (mostly rotala,
>valisneria, couple of amazon sword), about 30 small fish and a
>LOTS of algae. Rotala is growing like wildfire, but so was some
>long, hairy black stuff until I cut down the lights from 12 hours to 8
>hours per day. Now loads of something shorter (2-3mm), fuzzier &
>green is growing on all of the plants. HELP! Can this be stopped?
>Suggestions anyone?

We call this "New Aquatic Gardener Syndrome".  If you are using
adequate good-quality lighting and CO2 injection, no buffers other
than sodium bicarbonate, and doing frequent water changes, then
you have  probably fallen into the overfertilization trap.  Do a major
water change and don't add any fertilizer until you get a handle on
how much iron and nitrate you have.  Exceeding our target Fe level
of 0.1 mg/L by even a _little_bit will cause an outbreak of green
algae.  The collective wisdom of the list has set 5 mg/L of NO3 as
the target, although I have been operating at closer to 8 mg/L
without any algae at all.  I am not using PMDD, but rather a
combination of Duplagan water conditioner and Kent Freshwater
Plant Fertilizer in _very, very_ small amounts.  My tap water seems
to supply a goodly portion of the required nutrients, including the
NO3.  I have lots of fast-growing plants in my 20 gallon long
aquarium, including floating Lemna which probably sucks up a
lot of nutrients and seems to reproduce before my eyes.  I do weekly
water changes of at least 25% (very important) and operate my
lights 12 hours a day with a 1 hour siesta for the fish in the afternoon
(lights are on for a total of 11 hours a day).  My platys and otos
seem to help keep the algae down as well.

Hope this helps.

Jonathan in sunny but cold Maryland