Strange Algae Bloom

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Postby Milkshake » 2006-01-25 18:17

I'm having BIG probles with algae, it is no longer on the tank walls but suspeneded all through the water. My tank is no where near a window to cause phosphates. 2 of my fish have died since the waters clouded and they were not sick at all. What can cause an outbreak like this? One male guppy died and then my oto, they both looked fine the day befor but then the next mornings they were died. since I've been doing lots of water changes it has been going down, and the water is completly stable. Got any idea's?
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Postby KittyKat » 2006-01-25 18:20

is the tank established?

test your tap water. many problems can lie there.

phosphates are not caused by tank being near a window, they come from tap water.

please describe what the algae looks like so that we can ID it.
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Postby The fish shed » 2006-01-25 21:11

Have you got a tank water testing kit?
It could be caused by over feeding.
Do you have a gravel vac?
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Postby Mick e. t. » 2006-01-26 00:34

Check this <a href='http://allfishforums.com/index.php?showtopic=934&st=0&#lastlast' target='_blank'> thread </a> out it might help but, please answer the questions by The fish shed and KittyKat
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Postby -Rambler- » 2006-01-26 14:20

This will be short (for me anyway). Is this algae, for sure? Please give a description or pic. Sometimes people confuse a bacteria bloom for an algae bloom. Bacteria bloom will be brownish in color or cloudy. Bacteria blooms will indeed kill fish, algae is "usually" not toxic just unsitely. Some more info would help,ex: maintainance you preform, like PWCs. Has this tankjust established its nitrogen cycle? Plants? Lighting, how long what intensity? The main cause of algae is excess nutrients and too much light. Other sources of Phosphates besides your tapwater - Plant fertilizers. Some fish food has a "type" of phosphate as an ingredient or preservative I think. When it breaks down it adds to levels. Find another brand that doesn't have phosphates. If you use pH down or pH lowering additives, phosphate is usally the active ingredient. If you are using this, stop. Usually phosphate is the #1 culprit of green algae and green water. A remedy is to do several PWC's every other day(to dilute phosphate if the source is not your tap water), use not lighting for at least 4 days, more is better, up to a week or 2. Some people actually wrap the tank to give it a total blackout. The best way to get rid of something is to kill it. The safest way to kill algae in an aquarium is starvation. Take away its food source, light and phosphate, and done. If your levels of phosphates are from the tap the use of aluminum oxide is a solution (besides RO/DI) . Good brand names are PhosGuard or Phos-Zorb. Phos-Zorb is cheaper to use as an experiment because it is sold in small sacks that conveiniantly fit in your filtration. For long term use a large can of PhosGuard and a mesh media bag. The best way to deal with a problem is isolation. A phosphate test is a good start. So much for not being long winded aye. Good luck.
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Postby fi$hys » 2006-01-26 18:55

i have algae bloom i hate it i use KIng Britsh Green Water Control it realy does worrk
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Postby The fish shed » 2006-01-26 19:43

IMO Most seasoned fish keepers would rather find the cause than to just chuck chemicals at a problem. :)
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Postby -Rambler- » 2006-01-26 19:46

I'm not sure of that particular one, must be exclusive to UK. To put it simply the algae fix in a bottle "may" be toxic to some fish, usually kills any live plants and some are even carsinogens. A few have even destroyed bio-filters by killing beneficial bacterias. Fi$hys, if you have frequent algae blooms it is a red flag that something is not in sync. If not, before using it again I would do a little research on it.
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Postby Milkshake » 2006-01-29 05:35

<span style='color:purple'> Hey sorry for not replying sooner, I have many fish groups and I forgot wich one I had this thred on. So the water is green not brown, I used Pro-Clear and that took some of it out but it may also be that I've had the lights off for about 2-3 days now. I added a tablet today that is suposed to take the algae away, it said to put in 4 but that seemed so much since the tablets were huge. I have one live plant but this problem is bad enough I'm just going to buy a new one if this one dies. The water used to be so thick with green I couldnt see the back of the tank, it is 40 gallons long. I put the lights on at 8:00am and turn them off between 8:00 or 10:00pm. But they have been off altogether for the past 3-4 days. i can now see the back ground on the back glass and from the veiw on the side I can almost see the oposite side but the veiw is obscured a lot. Water changes help a lot, the water I take out is definetly algae green, I've had string algae in my other tanks so I'm asuming this is the algae blooming in the water. I somtimes get brown algae on the walls or decorations but very rarly. Nitrites are 0ppm, and pH is about 7.8. I've been slowly bringing it down to 7.0 but if that stuff uses phosphates to lower it I will stop. What can I use other wise though? My tap water is 8.0 wich is to high for some of my fish, it is a community tank. The Oto died along with a young male guppy, both very unexpectedly and over night. They were very very healthy when I saw them during the day, first the guppy died and the next night the Oto did, the oto didnt touvh the died guppy because it was floating and the oto never went to the top. got any idae's as to what this is? please help!</span>
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Postby KittyKat » 2006-01-29 14:47

it is best to use natural water conditioners to lower pH... for example wood which is commonly available in LFS. of course it does depend on how low you want pH and the tank volume, so if you post those it might help ;)
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Postby -Rambler- » 2006-01-29 16:10

What other fish do you have? Guppy's do fine in pH 7.8 , Otos prefered area is 5.5-7.5 pH . This does not mean they won't do well in a slightly higher pH. More harmful is using the pH down products. The carbonates in your water that are making your pH base dissolve the acid additives quickly. This causes fluctuation which is more harmful. As far as one dead floater and one sunken, ????, as with humans some drown victims float to sure some have to be dredged. Algae gone products can do other damage also, some use a high dose of copper which is toxic to "some" fish and invertabraes. Some use formaldehyde (or a version of it). Its best to starve algae to rid it from your aquarium rather then additives. The additives usually have bad side effects. To remove phosphates and silicates an aluminum oxide media will work (like PhosGuard and Phos-Zorb). They are safe because they release nothing into the aquarium, just remove. You mentioned you have a live plant, I guess thats the reason for the 12hrs of light? The brown algae should eventually go away. Usually after the aquarium establishes and nitrates are present brown algae (actually diatoms) is common. New aquariums and equiptment made of plastics and glass leech silicates. The combo of silicates and nutrients gives the diatoms" food". Once the "food" is gone it starves. Usually after 9 months the silicates are disipated , sometimes it could take a year. Driftwood and bogwood will help a bit to lower pH, like Kitty said, sometimes at first it could discolor your water to a yellowish/brown or tea color. The fish love it but some people dont like the look. If it is a small enough piece to fit in a large pot , boiling it will help speed up the leeching of color (tanis). I have driftwood that this worked well with, the discoloration doesn't last for ever. RO/DI water will help, perhaps a 50/50 mix with tap will dilute enough to neutralize. Boiling the water brings it down somewhat but I found not enough and more of a PITA then its worth. CO2 injection is another method, the plants will love it to.
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Postby Milkshake » 2006-01-29 17:53

<span style='font-size:8pt;line-height:100%'> <span style='color:purple'>My tank is 40 gallons. It contains neon tetra's, harlquin, hatchetfish, guppies, swordtails, pleco, and one Pelvicachromis pulcher. I have a huge peice of driftwood in there at the moment that does nothing to the pH. I have some stuff in a bag in the filter that takes out all the colour that the drift wood leaches into the water. I used a tablet to get rid of the algae and it worked and none of the fish car that it was in there, they were all hungryer then they have been since this all started, when the water was green they werent very hungry and this morning now that the water is almost clear again they were like little tigers again. I have more tanks then just this one, and some are buy windows, and none of them are having this problem, I use the same tap water for all of them. None of my firends are having this problem either. So I really don't think this is a problem with the cities water, just this one tank. So it could be the pH down I've been useing, I'll get something else for that. The plant doesnt look like the tablet did anything to it, like I said I underdoesed a lot. I think its under control now though. But it sure bloomed fast in the begining, it totoaly cloaded the water over in 2 days. </span></span>
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Postby -Rambler- » 2006-01-30 01:47

Yeah, more then likely a phosphate as the ingredient for the pH down product. Phosphates cause more algae problems then anything. Live plants use a small percentage compared to nitrate and potassium. Sounds like a colorful aquarium. Are you going to get a mate for the krib? Sometimes it takes a few weeks for the plant to show any ill effects. Anyway, a percentage of RO/DI water with your tap is alot safer then the pH down. Some LFS sell it for cheap or invest in a unit. Good Luck
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Postby Milkshake » 2006-01-30 05:54

<span style='font-size:8pt;line-height:100%'><span style='color:purple'>I may get a mate for her but some of my fish would not be fast enough to escape if they decided the fry would be a tasty treat, I don't think there smart enough to stay away. The guppy males can't take a hint, even if their lives depended on it :rolleyes: . Also the Lfs doesnt usually have kribs that often, I was lucky to spot her mixed in with a huge mob of redeyed tetra's and silverdollars, she blended in perfectly, until I saw her eye spots on her fins and her purple belly when she got exited, that was her give away, when I brought her to the counter all the staff wanted her but they didnt notice her because they didnt like tetra's very much. I am very lucky to have her! :wub: I got her for $5.00 to which was pretty good I think for how beautiful she is. They had some rams there to that I was sooo tempted to get but then there pretty sensitve to ich and fungus and there was a died one in with them :( so passed on those for now.

I'm going to do a few more bucket fulls of water change and the water should be clear again. I'll get some phosphate remover next time I go to the lfs, I'm sure the'll have something. The krib has desided to be picky, she ate flakes at the lfs but now that she is home she just spits them out, I'm hoping this is just a fase that is the same as betta's get sometimes when they are put into new suroundings, I'm feeding her frozen blood worms and dried brine shrimp right now but I don't think it's good for the other fish to have this everyday. Blood worms are always on hand though because of my gobies carnivoris apitites so she can be fed these ever 4 days wich is a better fluctuation for the other fish than everyday, because of all the faty acids and stuff in the worms. </span></span>
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Postby Mick e. t. » 2006-01-30 12:12

I think a point has been missed re. lighting. It is not only the length of time you you have your tank/s illuminated, the strength of illumination also has to be taken into consideration. I am sure, or I would like to think that the majority are aware of this fact. The tables below will throw some illumination on the required lighting for tank size. Please note that this is a general guide. For those who have fish/plants that require specialist care then please research for the correct application of lights.

<div align=center> LIGHTING FOR VARIOUS
PLANTS</div>

Appearance................Intensity................Suitable for
Subdued....................<500 lux..................Cryptocoryne, Vesiclaria

Moderate..................500 -1,000 lux..........Anubias, Echinodorus, Nomophila, Sagittaria
Quite bright..............1,000 - 1,500 lux.......Bacopa, Ceratoperis, Egeria, Ludwiga
Bright.......................>1,500 lux.................Cabomba, Hygrophila, Microsorium, Myricophyllum, Synnema, Vallisneria
Very bright...............6,000 -8,000 lux........Anemones
Extremely bright......12,000 - 16,000 lux....Macroalgae (e.g. Caulerpa)
Ultra bright..............15,000 - 20,000 lux....Most corals (except for most red corals and sponges, which prefer shade)

For those not into lux then you might find the next table easier to understand.

TANK SIZE.................Surface area.............Volume of water...............Light
(LxDxW)
61x46x38..................2,322 sq cm...............106 litres.........................45 watt
24x18x15 in..............360 sq in....................23 gallons

91x38x30 cm.............2,787 sq cm...............106 litres.........................50 watt
36x15x12..................432 sq in....................23 gallons

91x46x38 cm.............3,484 sq cm...............159 litres.........................80 watt
36x18x15 in...............504 sq in....................35 gallons

122x46x38 cm............4,654 sq cm...............212 litres.........................120 watt
48x18x15 in...............720 sq in....................47 gallons

122x61x38 cm............4,654 sq cm...............283 litres.........................160 watt
48x24x15 in................720 sq in...................62 gallons

By no means my calculations but presented as what can be found through research. Hope it helps,
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