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Persistent cloudy water
I hate to "waste" list space with questions like this, but
I've really read all the FAQs and previous postings, tried many
different things, and I still haven't been able to get rid
of my "cloudy water". Maybe someone in this list can point me
in the right direction.
The problem is that my 29 gallon tank has somewhat cloudy water.
I assumed this is the classic "green water" or algae bloom.
- I have a lot of fast growing plants (hygros, wysteria) and
several reasonably fast growing plants (echinodorus, vallisneria,
crypts) growing at a very good rate. The plant is heavily planted
(can't see the gravel in most places).
- I have a negligible fish load (2 Ottos).
- I've been changing between 5 and 10 gallons per day over
the past two weeks.
- I am not using any fertilizer at the moment (not until this stabilizes)
- And I only have the lights on for 10 hours/day and no direct sunlight
(I have a total of 60W).
It seems that with all the water changes I've done, the plants, etc
the green water algae should have been outclassed by the rest of the
plants a long while ago.
It also doesn't seem to get better or worse no matter how much water
I even had a mild case of green fuzz algae that disappeared with all
those water changes.
So my question is, could it be something else and I'm trying to fix the
wrong thing? The water is not really that "green", it's just cloudy.
If I look from one side of the tank to the other I see things, but
not very well. More than green is almost a bit white.
All the plants are growing quite well, and some (but not all) are
bubbling away. I'm afraid that the cloudiness will cut down
in the amount of light they receive though.
Here are some more specs:
- 60W of power glos, GE plants and tank, and vitalite.
- DIY CO2
- pH 6.5-6.8
- One whisper power filter WITHOUT carbon (just a sponge and
the "bio bag")
- One power head
- Substrate of kitty litter and Osmocote underneath 1.5" of fine
Now here's something that could help: the tank was crystal clear
about a week after I set it up and introduced the plants. I was
running the power filter with carbon and zeolite. Then I learned
that the carbon might remove some nutrients from the water and
I removed it. Just a day or two later the tank got cloudy.
Should I try putting the carbon back in? Maybe I DO want to remove
those nutrients from the water column. Should I avoid the zeolites
and get regular carbon, or does it matter?
Another possibility I considered: could some of the yeast solution
have gotten in the water from the CO2 bottle? The airstone I'm feeding
it to doesn't have any of that white mold, so I imagine I didn't
get any in the tank. If I did, would it cause symptoms like the ones
I would love to hear what other people think the cause of the
cloudy water could be, and possible solutions. Is there any way
to determine if it's just an algae bloom. If that's the case I'll
just have to be more persist ant with the water changes and shortening
Thanks for your advice.
llopis at zonker_ecs.umass.edu