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Re: Algae problem, please advise (2nd attempt) "pompom" algae

    * From: Dwight <Boukmn at mindspring_com>

>First of all, I'm having some trouble identifying the algae in question,
>it looks like green fur- balls, like little cheerleader's pompons, growing on
>my plants, driftwood, tubing etc. What kind of algae is this?, I know it's not
>rare. I just don't know the name.

If the fur-balls get bigger and bigger and grow into solid masses, if you
smell an unpleasant odor when you pull a mass of it out and sniff it, if
the individual filaments have lots of side branches, and if it is tough and
harsh to the touch rather than soft, slimy, and easily broken, then it is
Cladophora, and not the kind that forms round balls that is so popular
these days.

>I don't know its Sci name (don't care to either).  But I do know this
>scourge.  Its relatively slow growing but once its established its too late
>to control it by manipulating water conditions.  Not even my vaulted
>Florida Flagfish can handle it!   I don't believe its a real algae, my gut
>tells me its some sort of photosynthetic fungi (if there is such a thing).
>It tends to pop up in aged aquariums.  It has one weakness;  very hungry
>algae shrimp.  Particularly pregnant shrimp; the pregnant females really
>seem to go for this "algae".  THey eat it down to and remove the attachment
>nub.  That is one reason I don't think it is a true algae.  The pregnat
>shrimp may be after the proteins in its structure.

There is no such thing as a photosynthetic fungus.  It has got to be an alga.

>The good news is it  takes very few pregnant females to do the thorough job
>on a fair sized aquarium.  The bad news is pregnant algae shrimp are hard
>to find and when you do, they don't stay pregnant for ever.  I'd go with
>the hungry shrimp route.  Takes many more but they do work.

I once tried a freshwater shrimp-like organism called Gammarus, and they
ate the Cladophora, but then they ate all my plants.  Not good!  Gammarus
is not a true shrimp.  I think it is an isopod, whereas shrimp are

Paul Krombholz, just thinking that it is only two months until March, when
the English version of Aquarienpflanzen is due to be released.